Why is there so much meat in the foods?
Humans are omnivores and can eat plants and animals. We are used to eating meals containing meats, vegetables, fruits, and starches. However, if you look up “dog”, “cat” or “ferret” in the dictionary you’ll seem them defined as carnivorous animals. Carnivores are animals that primarily eat meat. Cats and ferrets are further classified as Obligate Carnivores, meaning that they must eat meat in order to survive.
As carnivores, dogs have a small underdeveloped caecum which is a pouch at the end of the large intestine used to break down vegetable matter. Cats and Ferrets as Obligate Carnivores don’t even have caecums. Therefore whatever plant matter goes in, is eliminated without any benefits.
In the wild, ferrets and cats would be eating animals such as rabbits, mice, and birds. They would eat their intestines, stomachs, and hides. Any plant, vegetable, or fruit matter contained on or in those parts would also be eaten, thereby giving the cats and ferrets some non-meat products as part of their diet, but not a large percentage.
By offering foods containing 100% meat or a very small percentage of non-meat ingredients, your pet will be able to get the nutrients it needs more quickly. Additives and fillers just add bulk to the food. All-meat diets mean that your pet’s stomach isn’t having to work around the non-digestible ingredients to get to the good stuff. This means that your pet will be getting the necessary nutrition quicker, undiluted, and naturally.
Knowing that our pets need meat to survive, and that cats and ferrets cannot even digest non-meat items, why do so many commercial pet food packages show robust tomatoes, bright beautiful beans, or heads of lettuce on their packaging? To tug at our heartstrings of course! We look at the packaging and say to ourselves, “Wow, I want the best food for my pet and this looks so healthy!” Unfortunately, the foods contained in these packages may not be the best for our pets. Be sure to read the labels, and find foods that can be digested by your pet – you’ll want to make sure it has a lot of meat in it, and not fillers such as corn, wheat, or rice.
All the foods sold here at Casey’s Hidden Pantry have been developed by veterinarians and animal nutritionists to make sure your carnivorous pets are receiving a complete and balanced diet. They all meet and exceed AAFCO standards. The ingredients are all human-grade. Canine blends tend to have more fruits and vegetables added, but no more than 4%. Feline products have little to no non-meat ingredients and can be served to ferrets and dogs. On the flipside, there are also some 100% meat canine products in this list, which may be a nice addition to cat and ferret’s diets.