As pet parents and pet pals, mostly the first timers, people often are ignorant of some very basic facts about their pet’s physiology, psychology and behaviour as well as their very natural species/breed inherited instincts. Here are various commonly uncommon facts related to the feeding habits.
Here are the common dietary anomalies and their detrimental effects on our pet’s health and well being.
Milk: The most common dietary constituent or food which is otherwise taken as a very healthy and complete food accompaniment by most pet parents is milk. It is a clinically proven fact that most of the dogs, say about 88 percent of them, are lactose intolerant as their gastrointestinal (GI) tract lacks the enzyme which is responsible for its breakdown to simpler digestible molecules. In fact, milk on the other hand, is the best source of most common infections, mainly gastric and enteric ones, which can very commonly cause acidosis and gastritis accompanied by enteritis or common diarrhoea as the bare minimum.
Green vegetables: Feeding raw vegetables specially tomatoes and other salads to your pets may lead to severe and premature/untimely osteoarthritis, and ataxia which is generally irreversible and responds very poorly to corrective measures.
Fruits: Grapes, raisins, apples and other citrus fruits have their own list of damages like kidney failure, cyanide poisoning, severe acidosis, ulcers, tooth decay, etc.
Sweets: Most pampered pawfect-pals are being fed very unusual foods like chocolates and candies, cookies & sugary treats. Candies generally contain Xylitol which is an artificial sweetener and is a potent agent to cause liver dysfunction and damage. Chocolates cause gastric upsets, irregular heart rhythms, and convulsions of neurogenic order.
Fermented dough: Fermented dough preparations cause excessive gas production, its accumulation and hence rupture of the GI tract. Being mono-gastric carnivores, bloat or tympanitis is inevitably fatal in dogs.
Raw eggs: Raw eggs contain a Biotin inhibiting factor which antagonises the absorption or synthesis and assimilation of vitamin B1 from any dietary source or within the body itself, causing visible deficiency syndrome.
Meat and bones: Feeding of raw meat, natural animal bones, and fish can cause fatal food pipe and intestinal obstructions, acidosis, pancreatitis, food poisoning and multiple internal worm infestations which in turn give rise to numerous secondary complications.
Salt: Addition of salt even in the quantities appropriate for humans can be fatal to dogs, least, causing excessive thirst, urination and sodium poisoning.
Human medicines: Human medicines like Acetaminophen, Ibrufen, Diclofenac, etc can even cause death of your pet.
A little care and lots of love with a tinge of extra caution regarding the above can definitely enhance the beauty of the extra long relationship shared with your valuable and most loving pet for the more happy times to come.
(Dr RD Mishra is senior veterinary officer and he runs Pet Care & Kennels at Ajmer, Rajasthan)