TORONTO, Sept. 18, 2013 /CNW/ - Do you know what your pet is eating? A new survey of American pet owners found that, while they have their pets' interests at heart, it's difficult to keep pets from testing their taste buds on household items.
Additionally, when it comes to the food pets are eating, there is still confusion telling good pet food ingredients from bad. The survey by Petcurean, maker of GO! and NOW FRESH recipes for dogs and cats, found that while most (89 per cent) pet owners are concerned with the health and nutrition of their pets, they could still be dishing out foods that aren't good for them or missing out on some ingredients that are beneficial for pet health.
Underwear, zippers and shoes, oh my!
While not on the typical list of dietary options for dogs or cats, pet owners admit to their pets trying to consume a vast assortment of non-food items around the home. While underwear (12 per cent), books (eight per cent) and wallets (three per cent) were among the most common items mentioned by pet owners, their list also includes zippers, back scratchers, hair brushes, flip flops, video games, shoes, socks and jewelry.
No bones about it
Only 44 per cent of pet owners believe cooked bones are unhealthy and nearly a quarter (24 per cent) think they are healthy for pets, yet experts say they should be avoided. "Possible broken teeth, mouth or tongue injuries and bones getting stuck in your dog's windpipe are just a few reasons why they are a no-no for pets," says Michele Dixon, Health and Nutrition Specialist with Petcurean.
On the other hand, only four per cent of pet owners have fed their pets cranberries and only nine per cent have given them pumpkin, yet both could be worthy additions to a dog or cat's diet and are found in both GO! and NOW FRESH recipes. "Pumpkin is good for your pet's digestion and is high in Vitamin A and beta-carotene, while cranberries are high in antioxidants and are a good source of fibre, Vitamin C and Vitamin K," says Dixon.
Overall, the survey found that pet owners have a good handle on some of the worst treats for pets. For example, only six per cent of pet owners have fed their pets chocolate and only eight per cent have fed them grapes. "Both can be toxic to dogs," says Dixon. Still, there's some uncertainty surrounding them. Nearly a third (29 per cent) of pet owners are not sure if grapes are healthy for their pets or not.
Petcurean is an independent, Canadian-owned family business. Since its beginnings in 1999, Petcurean has been committed to creating unique, nutritionally-balanced recipes for dogs and cats, using premium-quality natural ingredients. Petcurean pet foods are made in Canada, available only in pet specialty stores, and are savoured by dogs and cats all around the world. For more information, please visit www.petcurean.com.
About the survey
From August 13 to August 14, 2013, an online survey was conducted among a sample of 1,356 U.S. adults that own a cat or a dog, and who are also Angus Reid Forum panel members. The margin of error — which measures sampling variability — is +/-2.4 per cent, 19 times out of 20. The sample was balanced by age, gender, region and education according to the most recent census data.
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