Q & A
Why do I need to feed my puppy specific food?
Puppies, like human babies require a good, well balanced nutritional start to life. Poor nutrition in early stages of life can lead to permanent problems, like skeletal deformities or joint malformation. Ideal puppy is specially formulated for the young, growing dog, and contains joint supportive ingredients, as well as carefully balanced vitamins and minerals. Ideal puppy is also specifically processed to maximize digestibility and absorption as well as a pre-biotic for healthy gut flora.
Does overfeeding effect my dog?
Weight control/maintenance is important for optimal health. Dogs vary greatly in their metabolism and activity levels, so the best way to maintain healthy weight is by observing your dogs body condition. Our feeding guidelines will give you a starting point, however fine tuning may be needed for each dog. Underweight dogs are prone to disease, as there is not enough nutrients available to maintain normal body functions eg. Immune system. Overweight dogs on the other hand, are prone to fatty livers, fatty hearts, and bone and joint disease. Feeding volumes should be adjusted so that your pets ribs are easy to feel, without being prominent, and your dog should have a visible `tuck` over the abdomen i.e your dog should have a waistline
Why is salt added to dry dog food? Is there a limit, if so what is it?
Salt (NaCl) is important in your dogs diet. Sodium and chlorine are the major electrolytes required for acid/base balance and osmoregulation of body fluids. Sodium also aids in maintenance and proper growth and development, while chlorine is essential for the secretion of bile salts and hydrochloric acid. It also makes food taste better. The minimum requirement, according to the AAFCO, is 0.3%. Even though high levels of sodium may increase thirst and water consumption, extra sodium is excreted in the urine and will therefore (short term) not affect a healthy dogs body water retention or blood pressure.
If salt levels are extremely high (levels rarely included in dog food) and fed long term, sodium ion poisoning may be a problem as your dog cannot process the salt fast enough. Also, if your dog already suffers from some kind of heart, kidney or liver disease, then high levels of salt will be a problem and decreasing the content may aid in decreasing excess body fluid and high blood pressure.
Our Ideal dog food contains on average 0.4% salt.
I would like to enquire if wheat bran is an ingredient in your dog food? If so, what ratio of maize vs wheat bran is used? I have had a ‘debate’ with someone regarding the use of a majority of wheat bran in dry dog food. I use Ideal for my dog.
Yes it is. Maize to wheat bran ratio is around 2.5:1. Maize is one of the main energy sources in the diet as it has a high carbohydrate content which is readily digestible. Wheat bran has a higher fiber content than maize which stabilizes digestion and absorbs water therefore forming firmer stool.
Does Ideal Dog Food contain GMOs?
Most of the dog foods manufactured in SA contain maize and soya, and much of the maize and soya grown in SA is GMO. Maize is taken from the farms into the large co-op maize storage silos, and from there to the manufacturer. This is why most dog food will say “may contain GMOs”. The truth is we are not sure exactly how much of the maize we use is GMO. GMO regulation in South Africa is still not clearly defined, thus some of the farmers are still buying GMO seed – usually as a way to minimize the use of pesticides and herbicides (both of which are definitely harmful to health). Sourcing GMO free ingredients is an option, but is extremely costly as many ingredients would then require import, making the price of a balanced nutritious dog food out of reach to the large proportion of South Africans. GMO testing of every batch would indicate the exact quantity, however testing is extremely complex and requires a specific test for each of the possible genetic modifications. Test results can take several weeks, and it is not practical to hold stock for this length of time. While GMO seed is definitely used in SA, in general most products stay below 5% GMO, as do we. Most human food in SA and in first world countries contains GMO (including places like Woolies), and the fact of the matter is, it is probably not possible to feed seven billion people and their pets without some tinkering with nature.
Please explain more about Aflatoxins?
Aflatoxin is the toxin released by certain species of fungi/mould. This occurs most commonly on maize that is not properly dried in the field before harvesting. With South Africa’s sunny climate, Aflatoxin is not often a problem here, though we have of late (last 18months) seen an increase in another mycotoxin (mould toxin) called DON – which caused a recent recall of one popular brand. This has occurred on lower grade maize. We buy only grade Y1 maize, which contains no or only very microscopic and harmless levels of mycotoxins. We additionally test every batch of maize we receive on site for both of these toxins before we accept the load. In this way we can be sure we never release feed into the market that has mycotoxins.
Could you send me more info on your ingredients and quality control?
Ingredients consist of 3 main groups: Processed, digestible carbohydrates like maize and bran; Proteins like meat/poultry and soya; and additives – vitamins, minerals and amino acids. Fat and a natural flavour enhancer made of liver are then coated onto the finished product. All our ingredients are strictly assessed before we buy them. Suppliers undergo audits and raw materials undergo routine testing for safety and quality as part of our food safety certification. FSSC 22000 is the “top of pops” human food safety standard that we adhere to, this system works to PREVENT problems by making sure programs are in place to reduce or eliminate food safety risks. Part of this is that our ingredients undergo routine testing for harmful contaminants like melamine and pesticides, as well as bacterial analysis for any indication of Salmonella or other harmful bacteria. The majority of our ingredients are locally sourced, though in some cases, South African quality cannot match imported quality (carcass meals being the most important one). In these cases, we import from veterinary approved plants only in South America and Spain. All ingredients are checked on arrival for consistency and quality, and to ensure that ingredients have not been tampered with or otherwise damaged in transit. The food safety and quality policy is adhered to all the way through the production process, with multiple checks and finished product testing taking place. The result is a final product that is safe for both pets and their owners.
Ideal is scientifically formulated to supply your dog with all the nutrients that it requires to promote bone strength, muscle tone, coat condition and general vitality and quality of life.
Well balanced, full nutrition puppy food, suitable for puppy's up to the age of 12 months.
Ideal Supreme Adult Cat Food is formulated with the good health of your feline friend in mind.