Yesterday Lilly and Bunk were invited to our local Pets at Home for a nutrition consultation. To be honest I was expecting a few minutes chat and some general advice on what and how to feed my dogs, instead we spent there almost 2 hours. Yea… long time but it was actually really worth it.
We were met by the lovely Rachel and she had a lot of questions for us, mostly food related but not limited to it. In addition to taking a long and detailed feeding history Rachel checked the general health state of both dogs… it felt kind of like a dog MOT 😉 – ears, eyes, joints, skin, fur, nails etc…
Bunk scored a perfect 4 whilst Lilly only got 6-7 which means that she is overweight. It was hard for Rachel to determine her perfect weight because Lilly is a cross breed but in a bulk perspective she needs to drop a kg or two.
After all the “interrogations” were done we wandered into the food section to find a perfect match for both Lilly and Bunk. Currently they eat:
- Dry kibbles, lamb based
- Nature diet pouch, lamb flavour or jelly from home cooked trotters
- Fish Oil
- Coconut Oil
This wasn’t a bad diet in Rachel’s’ eyes but she had a few suggestions. First of all change lamb to a lower fatty meat based food, secondly put them both onto a senior food and third, make it a large breed food in order to get all the nutrition they need.
I actually didn’t know that lamb based food is considered a fatty one so this was something new for me. I also didn’t know that giant breeds should be changed onto a senior food much earlier than other dogs. Bunk is only 4.5 years old. Rachel suggested that he should eat senior from year 5 but doing it earlier isn’t going to hurt him, in fact the opposite, it can only help.
So we had our main components for the food all set, so it was a time to find the perfect dinner match for them.
Pets at Home stock a lot of different brands. We looked at Wainwright’s and Burns, and Hills… At some point I asked “Shouldn’t you be recommending your own food?” I think Rachel wasn’t ready for this question but she answered me “If I thought that it will be good for your dogs I would. Every dog has a different dietary needs and not every food will be right for them. My job is not to push sales of our food, my job it to find the right food to match the needs of your dogs”. I loved the answer. Really at this point I could have given her a kiss!
Anyway… after a long discussion and detailed checking of the food contents we decided on Arden Grange Senior and NatureDiet Senior Lite. This is what Lilly and Bunk will be fed from now on… oh ok, I have to get them used to their new food, so I will be slowly adding some new food and mixing it with their current one.
I will update you on how they are doing on the new food shortly but for now I will leave you with this… if you have never had a nutritional consultation for your pet, you should book one. I think I am fairly well educated when it comes to dog food and pet care in general but during these 2 hours I did learn quite a lot of new and interesting facts.
Thank you Rachel, it was a pleasure. And we are all looking forward to meeting you again on the 26th of this month.
* Lilly and Bunk received a free consultation as well as advised dry food to last them for the duration of the challenge.