Monday, December 29, 2008

Don’t let feeding your pet turn into a science: Vet setting base nutrient intake values for cat impossible to meet by pet owner

A couple days ago one of my customers gave me a brain workout. Quite some homework he gave me there. I have been calculating for hours out trying to find what he is looking for in my assortment. His vet wants his cat to get every day 27g of protein but at the same time restrict the caloric intake to 210 kcal/day. Here is how far I got to this point and my response:
“The bottom line is simple: I do not know where your vet got his numbers from, but finding a food matching those markers is quite a challenge. In general either we are ok in protein values but then can’t match the calories or vice versa.
I looked at my raw foods (all figures based on 10 lbs body weight of the cat, which is what the 210 kcal requirement set by your vet translates to in my calorie tables):
The AFS Chicken/Beef formula (the freeze dried version) is perfect in calories (220), though high in protein, 40g.
Primal makes a Turkey/Veggie Mix (80% meat, 20% organic produce), calories are 196, but with 19g/feeding there is not enough protein.
They also make a, what they call “Frozen Raw Formula”. The Chicken/Salmon Formula (85% chicken, 5% salmon, 10% produce) has 252 calories (high) providing 25 g protein. A Pheasant Formula (95% meat, 5% produce) provides the same value in protein, 25 g but has a lower caloric content of 236. This would be the closest one I can get with my products.
Aside from frozen raw, I was checking into other options as well. And this is where my problem starts: Are we sure we have the right numbers from your vet? Basically when using the protein and calorie figures I come up with the fact that nothing would match your requirements. That just seems awkward. Our foods have proven themselves to be helpful for hundreds of pets, regardless what their conditions may have been. Over weights lost weight, under weights gained, diseases and allergies have been helped, pets become more lively and simply over all healthier. Just last night I got a call from a customer. Her cat was underweight and has a kidney problem. We put her on a strict Wysong diet with Archetype and Geriatrx, the cat now is gaining weight (after 3 years of losses and 2 months of feeding my food), after being totally inactive, she now plays with the kittens, talks a lot and it is just amazing and easy to see that the food took care of a lot of problems. My diet plan, which is a varied feeding of a Wysong dry formula like Geriatrx, any Archetype TNT processed variety (TNT processing is a proprietary method of preserving raw food, it is similar to freeze drying just does not utilize heat, which destroys important food elements) and any Wysong canned Meat Au Jus flavors combined with various supplements and fresh food like fresh, whole meat, veggies and fruit, is simply a working solution. Yet, if I run the numbers and compare them to what you told me you need for your cat, they are way off. This in turn would mean it is not a working solution in general, but we know that the opposite is the case. One of the problems we are running into with my plan is that it is going to be extremely difficult to figure out the numbers since so many different components are involved.
I understand that every animal is different from the next one. But I want to help you out here and I am sure that ultimately we will come up with the right plan for your cat. It is as simple as that. Let’s just make sure, before putting in all this work, we start out with the correct numbers. Also, please let me know as much as you know about your cat, like age, breed, any specific health conditions, what does she prefer to eat (i.e. fish, poultry, lamb, beef, etc.), etc.
Like I said, you can rest assured together we are going to figure this out. That is what we are good at and what ultimately will become our trademark.”
What I really want to know and asked the customer to find out is if the vet has any food recommendation. It doesn’t look like it, otherwise my customer wouldn’t ask for help. Pet food by the book and straight down to the most particular detail? An interesting approach. Especially since much of today’s commercially mass produced pet food is quite the opposite of what we should have learned from the books. Sounds to me like this is taking it from one extreme to another one. I am anxiously looking forward to the continuation of this story coming soon.

No comments: