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Rethinking Your Pet’s Plate: The Benefits of a Raw Food Diet

When it comes to your furry friend’s food bowl, things can often feel overwhelming. From sifting through an endless aisle of kibbles to managing the needs of picky eaters, one thing remains your guiding force—you want your cat or dog to be healthy and well nourished. Enter: raw food. It’s a diet that is minimally processed, protein-packed, and never cooked to keep more nutrients intact.

Feeding cats and dogs a well-balanced, raw-food diet can have many positive impacts on a pet’s health and well-being. The problem? In the past, preparing raw meals for pets wasn’t as easy as it is today—it used to require combining raw meat and other ingredients yourself. Besides being time-consuming, it was nerve-wracking too. Not getting the proper balance of nutrients in the bowl can lead to malnutrition in pets. Another concern? Homemade raw food is subject to food-borne pathogens, which can make pets sick.

But these days, premade raw meals from a reliable company like Instinct Pet Food are safer than ever. Instinct’s frozen and freeze-dried raw foods are complete and balanced and a stress-free way to give your pet a whole-food diet. Here’s what you need to know about making mealtime the most nutritious (and delicious!) for your furry pal.

Raw Pet Food is a Healthy Choice

Anytime you’re considering a new pet food, it’s important to evaluate both the brand and the product itself. The World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA) provides guidelines about what to look for when selecting pet food. Tips include checking if pet food companies have a board-certified veterinary nutritionist on staff and if they conduct third-party testing of nutrient levels.

Instinct Pet Food meets these high-level standards, as well as other stringent WSAVA criteria, to provide raw food that gives cats and dogs exactly what their bodies need in the most natural state as possible—with no fillers or artificial preservatives.

Besides meeting and often exceeding the WSAVA guidelines, Instinct’s raw food is backed by science. Instinct recipes are intentionally crafted by pet nutrition scientists for guaranteed nutrition at every life stage. Feeding raw while pets are young can actually lead to lifelong health benefits. For instance, research has found that puppies who are fed a raw diet are less likely to develop environmental allergies or inflammatory bowel disease later in life compared to kibble-fed puppies.

Traditional pet foods undergo a cooking process, destroying many beneficial nutrients with heat. Raw food isn’t exposed to high temperatures, so it retains more nutrients to help your pets thrive. Pet parents rave that the protein-packed, pure-food meals improve their pets’ digestion, the condition of their skin and coat, and results in smaller, more solid stools.

Originally published by Real Simple

The Safe Way to Feed Raw

Cold pressure (or high pressure) processing is a method of killing bacteria like salmonella and e. coli without using heat. It’s used on cold-pressed juices and store-bought guacamole so food remains raw but safe to eat. Instinct Pet Food uses cold pressure on its raw food too and, as an added safety measure, tests every batch of food before it goes out to ensure it’s pathogen-free.

The brand also follows the strictest food safety standards. Instinct is the only raw pet food company in North America to earn Safe Quality Food’s highest level of certification: an “Excellent” Food Safety rating and certification in Quality. It’s the most rigorous food safety certification available for human or animal food producers.

The only thing you need to worry about when it comes to handling their raw pet food is taking the same precautions you would when handling raw meat: Wash your hands and affected surfaces with soap and hot water afterward.

It’s Easy and Convenient

Forget having to shop, chop and pull everything together at feeding time, which is what’s involved for those who make their own raw pet food. With pre-made raw pet food, feeding raw is far simpler these days. To keep your same routine, you can trade traditional kibble for Instinct Raw Freeze-Dried Meals for cats and dogs. The tasty morsels are 100 percent raw but freeze-dried so you can store them in your cupboard like usual. Just scoop and serve!

For the most minimally processed option, choose Instinct Raw Bites and Patties for dogs and Raw Bites for cats. They’re frozen pieces packed with whole food ingredients including real meat, organs, vegetables and fruits that even the pickiest eaters find hard to resist. Store in the freezer until close to mealtime; then, just thaw and serve!

Looking to test the waters? That’s no problem either with Instinct’s yummy Mixers. Combine them with your pet’s regular kibble or use them as treats. You’ll quickly find out just how much your four-legged friend likes them.

Just like eating a good, healthy meal or a pile of junk food can make us feel better or worse, so it goes with pets, too. What you choose to feed your cat or dog can make all the difference.

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