Pet food marketing gimmicks: sorting fact from fiction

When looking at a bag of pet food, it’s so easy to get overwhelmed with the amount of persuasive marketing and trendy buzzwords slapped on the package. So many pet owners come to me with pre-concieved ideas of the best food to feed their pet, that are based on marketing tactics and human nutrition, rather…

Joint care for dogs – to supplement or not?

With many dogs suffering from some form of joint condition or disease, many pet owners turn to supplements or alternative treatments to help ease the pain. However not all supplements or home remedies are effective, or even safe. So let’s explore the current research on joint supplements and joint diets in dogs, both what works…

Protect the kidneys: feeding cats with CKD

Chronic kidney disease is a common condition in senior cats. In fact, it is the number one cause of death in cats over the age of 7. The condition can’t be cured, but the progression of this disease can be slowed, symptoms reduced and quality (and length) of life improved – with nutrition. The primary…

Going against the grain: grain free diets

You may have heard the lastest buzzword in pet food is “grain free”. However, grain free pet foods came into the market with little to no scientific evidence to support the trend that was largely led by consumer demand following an increase in the popularity of gluten free diets for humans and an incorrect assumption…

Don’t fear the feed! How to use feeding tubes

Following on from my last post, sometimes animals simply will not eat on their own and are now at risk of deteriorating even further as a result of prolonged anorexia. This is where feeding tubes come in! I promise you they are not scary, they are superheroes of the nutrition world. Sometimes the only way…

When nutrition is critical: preventing malnutrition in hospital

Did you know that patients of any age can become malnourished from inadequate nutrient intake? Malnutrition is defined as any disorder with inadequate or unbalanced nutrition associated with either nutritional deficiencies or excesses. This can occur in a variety of ways, but we often see patients come through to the clinic already in some state…

The balancing act: preparing your own pet food

Home cooking meals for your pets is not all it’s cracked up to be. There are often many unbalanced, dangerous recipes floating around the internet that owners who don’t know any better decide to try out and the proponents of these diets continue to reinforce the misconception that making your own pet food is simple…

Feeding puppies, great and small

One of the biggest decisions you will make as a new puppy owner is what to feed your pet. In my opinion, there isn’t anything more important than considering a diet that will provide all the necessary nutrients to support your pet’s growth and avoid serious health consequences in the long run. When assessing a…

Everyone’s an expert in animal nutrition

There’s a common misconception that veterinary professionals don’t know anything (or very little) about animal nutrition and that self-professed ‘experts’ are who you should be asking for nutrition advice. Let’s break it down – who are the real experts and what do their titles mean? How much study have they done in animal nutrition and…

Taking the pain out of pancreatitis

Pancreatitis is a painful condition where the pancreas becomes severely inflamed; this usually occurs when the pancreas has been damaged somehow thus causing a release of digestive enzymes that are usually held within the pancreas. This release then harms the pancreas where by the enzymes begin to digest the pancreas itself. The patient may then…

Vegan pets – is it safe?

Can my dog or cat eat a vegetarian or vegan diet? It’s a common question that doesn’t necessarily have a simple answer. Usually owners wish to feed a vegan or vegetarian diet because they themselves are vegetarian or vegan and feel uncomfortable feeding meat or animal products to their animal whether for moral reasons or…

What the FLUTD?

Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease is a condition we see frequently in clinic and following medical management, the ongoing prevention of urinary conditions reoccuring is heavily reliant on nutritional management, and strict compliance is necessary to save your special cats from unnecessary pain and suffering. So what is FLUTD? Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease describes…

Feeding for dental health

Dental health is vitally important to our pet’s overall health and wellbeing; if we allow dental disease to go unchecked, we are setting our pet’s up for heart disease, kidney disease, pain and of course above all else, lack of proper nutrition. Throughout August, veterinary clinics in Australia are celebrating Pet Dental Health month so…

Decoding pet food labels – part 2

Continuing from my last post, decoding pet food labels is an involved process. There’s a lot of information on the label and not all of it is as important as manufacturers will have you think. This post explains, in simple terms, the guaranteed analysis panel and ingredients list; it is by no means comprehensive, particularly…

Decoding pet food labels – part 1

Pet food labels can contain a lot of helpful information for owners and the vet team alike, but can also contain a lot of marketing. I often get asked what you should look for on a label; this is a loaded question. While the label tells you a lot of things, it doesn’t always tell…

Scratching the itch – managing atopy

Itchy pet? You’re not alone. We see so many itchy pets every day and understand how frustrating it is when it’s not a simple fix. Diet is quite often blamed as the cause, however this isn’t necessarily the case. Often the allergies are environmental in origin, however I will discuss both in this post, as…

Transitioning made simple

So, you want to start a new diet, or your vet has sent you home with a new food, but you’ve been told to transition slowly. What does that even mean!? Transitioning simply means phasing out one food while gradually adding in the new food. “But why,” you may ask, “I don’t transition when I…

Upset tummy? Now what!

One of the most common things I come across in clinic is pets with upset tummies; I’m talking diarrhea. Despite it being one of the most common reasons for presenting, it’s also often where I see the biggest nutrition mistakes being made. Chicken and riceThis ‘bland’ diet recommendation is the age-old adage that is a…

All about fibre!

People are becoming increasingly aware of the importance of fibre in their pet’s diet. However, in clinic we still see so many patients suffering from conditions as a result of poor fibre intake. Let’s explore this a bit further as to why fibre is a vital part of the animal diet. Fibre is a broken…

About Me

My name is Jessica. I am a Registered and Accredited Veterinary Nurse, working as a Practice Manager in Australia. I hold a Bachelor of Animal and Veterinary Bioscience from La Trobe University and a Certificate IV in Vet Nursing, with a burning passion for Animal Nutrition. I have completed countless hours of veterinary continuing education…