Animal Proteins In Feed - Why Is It Important For Dogs And Cats?
Recently, the amount of animal proteins indicated on the packaging of dry feeds for dogs and cats, can be seen more and more often. Read on to find out why it matters and how animal proteins benefit your pet.
Differences Between Plant and Animal Proteins
Proteins in pet food can be derived from animal or vegetable origin ingredients. Common sources of animal proteins are salmon, lamb, poultry, etc. and vegetable proteins are usually derived from corn gluten, peas or potatoes. Although there may be many different kinds of proteins in the feed, the benefits of each kind will be different to the pet. For example, high quality animal proteins contain all the essential amino acids while some essential amino acids may not be present in the plant protein.
IAMS Company conducted a research study on adult and aging dogs. Each category was divided into two groups: one was fed with feed containing 100% chicken proteins and the other was a feed containing 50% chicken proteins and 50% corn gluten proteins.
The results showed that the body fat of adult dogs that ate low-proteins animal feed increased and the amount in the proteins in the blood decreased. The body structure of aged dogs eating 100% animal feed proteins was consistent with that of young adult dogs.
Importance of Animal Proteins
Proteins in the bodies of dogs and cats have many important functions but it is best known for being providers of amino acids for hair, nails, skin, muscles, tendons, ligaments and cartilage.
It is very important that the pet receives all the essential amino acids it needs. For example, taurine is the indispensable amino acid for cats, its feline body does not produce taurine. Taurine deficiency in cats can cause visual impairment, weakening of the heart muscle, indigestion, impairment the growth and development of the offspring during pregnancy.
Thus, high levels of animal proteins are important at all stages of the pet's life – for the youngest, for pregnant and breastfeeding mothers, for adults and for aging dogs and cats. Look for the specified amount of animal proteins on the feed packaging – likewise, you can be assured that choosing a high animal protein feed will give your pet a long and healthy life.