10 Million Owners Don T Know What S In Their Pets Food

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10 million owners don’t know what’s in their pets’ food
7th January 2019

By Karen Pickwick

As many as 10 million dog and cat owners are not aware of what’s in their pet’s food, according to new research from raw and natural pet food brand True Instinct.

But, despite this, a quarter are pledging to make a healthy New Year’s resolution for their four-legged friend!
 
The poll of UK dog and cat owners reveals that the nation’s knowledge of pet food ingredients is extremely low, with more than 62% (equating to 10 million out of the 17 million total dog and cat owners in the UK) admitting not knowing what they’re really feeding their pet. More than half say they aren’t aware that mainstream dry pet foods contain sugar, meat derivatives, processed ingredients and artificial additives, and fewer than 15% are aware that ingredients such as bone ash, feathers and synthetics can be found in some of these foods.
 
The knowledge gap continues with around a third of pet owners not realising dogs can’t eat foods such as chocolate or onions, which are both toxic. Conversely, owners aren’t aware of the many ingredients that can improve pet health either, with 14% saying dogs can’t eat butternut squash, which is a nutritious vegetable, and 20% saying blueberries are a no-go when they are actually full of antioxidants. Both are found in natural and raw pet foods such as True Instinct.

HEALTHIER AND HAPPIER
 
But it’s not all doom and gloom. While only 40% of UK dog and cat owners are making a healthy New Year’s resolution for themselves in 2019, a quarter are putting their pets first and have pledged that they’ll make one for their four-legged friend – ensuring they kick start the year to get their pet healthier and happier.
 
This could be down to the fact that more than a third say their dog or cat suffers from a health issue such as bad breath, diabetes or a skin condition – and 10% are overweight.
 
While knowledge of ingredients is low, the research does show that 26% of pet parents say that when selecting their pet food brand their dog or cat must visibly enjoy it, and a quarter saying it must make a difference to their health and wellbeing.
 
Top 10 list of New Year’s resolutions for pets this January:
1    Go for more walks (45%)
2    Cut down on unhealthy treats (40%)
3    Give them a better, more natural diet (31%)
4    Spend more time with them (30%)
5    Brush their teeth more often (29%)
6    Pay more attention to their training/behaviour (25%)
7    Take them for regular health checks (21%)
8    Stop bad habits eg sleeping on the bed, eating from the table (19%)
9    Give them more regular baths (18%)
10    Ensure they socialise with other dogs/cats (16%).

POSITIVE CHANGE


Melanie Sainsbury, veterinary education manager for True Instinct, said: “January is often a time where our thoughts turn to getting healthier, be it taking part in ‘Dry January’ or just generally being more conscious about what we eat – and this shouldn’t be any different for our pets. While there is clearly a gap in knowledge of what’s really in certain pet foods, we understand that pet owners are often time-poor and often prioritise convenience.
 
“However, it’s promising to see from the research that pet parents want to make a positive change – and it doesn’t have to be difficult either.
 
“Pets could take part in their very own ‘Dry January’ but one where they enjoy a balanced nutritious diet in the form of a more natural, healthy dry food such as True Instinct. Our raw boost product includes no nasties and all the ingredients they need to thrive, while still in a convenient format.”