Kapi-Mana News : February 5th 2013
20 KAPI-MANA NEWS, FEBRUARY 5, 2013 REVIEW Healthy Diet, Healthy Pet The most important thing you can do for your pets' health is feed them a good, healthy, balanced diet. Whether you have a dog, cat, rabbit, guinea pig or bird, they all need to be fed. Why not feed them a good diet then? The main reason that people don't is the higher price of good quality foods. Unfortunately, if your pet has problems that a good diet could have prevented or at least reduced, then it was probably a false economy to feed them a cheaper food in the first place. There is a huge variation in options and quality of food. And it is sometimes actually difficult, even for veterinarians, to say what foods have in them. The lack of strict requirements on labelling and ingredients is actually quite horrifying. Pretty much anyone can make up a pet food, put a label on it and sell it. In some supermarkets in New Zealand you can buy a pet roll that says it provides all the necessary nutrient values for cats, kittens, puppies and dogs, including older ones! Amazing and total rubbish. The nutritional requirement for a growing kitten is very different to that for an older dog. Growing animals, just like human babies and growing children, need specific dietary requirements to ensure the proper development of their bones , brains , muscles , intestinal system and immune system. As vets we see animals on poor or inadequate diets get bone and joint diseases as young animals or that are prone to infections and parasite infestations. Cats are not small dogs and should never be fed dog food routinely. Cats have much more specific protein and vitamin requirements and will get sick if constantly fed dog food. The raw diets are very popular at the moment. People think that dogs particularly need to eat a more natural diet. This may sound logical but the main problem with this is that it has been shown that domesticated dogs fed on premium commercial dog foods will actually live twice as long as their natural counterparts. It is not that the natural diets are necessarily bad, just often the commercial diets are better, because they have been scientifically researched and have all the requirements needed for better health at specific life stages. Don't get me wrong. I still feed my dog leftovers but 95% of her diet is a high quality completely balanced AFFCO approved food. Why have a pet if you are not prepared or even able to feed them properly? A healthy pet is a happy pet, and surely we own pets primarily to have and enjoy their happiness and the happiness they bring to us as pet owners. Next month I will go into more detail about food as it is the foundation to having a healthy, happy pet. By Dr Ian Schraa, Rappaw Veterinary Care senior veterinarian and owner By Dr Ian Schraa, Rappaw Veterinary Care senior veterinarian and owner 5152015AA rappaw VETERINARY CARE 15 Paremata Crescent, Paremata 224 Main Road, Tawa 28 Whitehouse Road, Titahi Bay 0800 RAPPAW 0800 727 729 Purchase any bag of Hills Science Diet or Vet Essentials Kitten food and go in to the draw towinaCat Climbing Tower. Ends 28th Feb 2013 Purchase any bag of Hills Science Diet or Vet Essentials Puppy food and go in to the draw to win a Puppy Pack Ends 28th Feb 2013 5152034AA Congratulations to our competition winners: $50 Rappaw Voucher - Robyn Gardiner Rappaw/Frontline Breville Coffee Machine - Lorraine Leamy Rappaw/Frontline $500 Farmers Voucher - Margaret Hobbs DISCOUNT VOUCHER WORTH $5.00 rappaw VETERINARY CARE • Valid until Friday 15th February 2013 • One Voucher per Purchase Books to get the little critters reading Here's a round-up of the children's books we intended to review in late 2012 but never happened. Released mid-year, Colour the Stars (Scholastic ) is a touch- ing tale from Dawn McMillan about two friends, one blind, teaching each other what colour means to them. Keinyo White's painted art is quite striking. Rec- ommended for kids 3-plus, I'd push it a little older due to the plaintive tone -- there are few laughs to be had. Save it for when the kids are in a thinking'' mood. Manukura --The White Kiwi (Random House ) tells the true story of Mt Bruce National Wild- life Centre's rare critter. Sweet and informative, it offers a few Maori words for families to add to their vocab, but Joy Cowley's words and artwork are pretty mawkish. Few kids' books flew higher in 2012 than Madison Moon and the Hot Air Balloon (Scholastic ). Mad- ison Moon takes to the skies, so fed up is she with traffic jams, but soon the entire town is getting on on the trend, fill- ing the big blue with all sorts of crazy shaped air balloons. While Catherine Foreman's vibrant images are what initially enchants young eyes, Chris Gurney's kooky, tongue-twisting rhyming tale as an absolute delight. It wasn't until about the 20th read that I picked up on some of the little visual gags - such as the shark balloon chasing the fish balloon. Instant classic. Keri's Party and Piri's Picnic (Lighthouse Media ) were the first two books in Donna Blaber's Kiwi Critters series. The simple, straight-forward quick- fix'' nature of these pocket-sized reads make them useful for bring- ingoutatacafeorinthecarin moments of need. And Rupert Shaw's thick-outlined illustra- tions do the trick. Irish author and illustrator Oliver Jeffers has created his share of treasured reads and This Moose Belongs to Me (Harper Collins ) is right up there. Though visually a depar- ture from his minimalistic style -- in which Jeffers' scrawls are min- gled with dreamy landscape prints -- the usual level of cheek and wit remains.
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