Five questions: Dr. Gary Richter from Ultimate Pet Nutrition

When and why did you start Ultimate Pet Nutrition?

After I published my book The Ultimate Pet Health Guide in 2017, I realized I wanted to do more. I wanted to help as many people as possible keep their pets healthy and happy for as long as possible – that starts with proper nutrition. That’s why we created Ultimate Pet Nutrition to make it easy for people to get the best nutrition for their pets, with a range of advanced, scientifically researched products made from only the highest quality ingredients. I wanted to make sure these were products that I would feel good about giving to my own pets and recommending to my veterinary customers.

What are the dangers of poor animal nutrition?

Diet is the foundation of health. Without good nutrition, good health is very difficult to achieve. That goes for humans and it goes for our pets. I cannot emphasize enough how many animal diseases, including cancer, result from a body that has functioned at sub-optimal levels for years, and diet is an integral part of that. What pets eat every day contributes to how efficiently they deal with internal and external stress, prevent disease and ultimately maintain the “vehicle” in which they live. I always tell my clients that the important thing is that they don’t wait for their pets to be sick and think about their diet. I am so passionate about getting this message out that I created the very first public television animal health special on PBS called The Ultimate Pet Health Guide, in which I talked about the importance of optimal pet nutrition for longevity Pets speak. living healthy.

How would you describe the importance of pet health care?

Preventive care is vital to the health and longevity of pets. Of course, once an animal already has a disease or illness, it is much more difficult to get it back to health. Unfortunately, there is often a lack of preventive care in conventional western veterinary medicine. Conventional medical care is great when it comes to trauma, surgery, infection, etc. But for pets with long-term chronic problems, the treatment options are much more limited, and sometimes the long-term side effects are almost as bad as the condition we are treating. Many of the diseases of older pets are preventable conditions that represent the cumulative effects of years of poor diet – metabolic diseases such as diabetes, arthritis, and premature aging. For this reason, I take an integrative approach to veterinary care that focuses on prevention and proper nutrition.

What do you think is an overlooked area of ​​animal health?

One of the biggest and most overlooked problems I see in pets today is obesity. According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention in 2018, 59.5 percent of cats and 55.8 percent of dogs were classified as overweight or obese. My longtime clients have told me that they have been chastened by strangers for not feeding their “skinny dog” enough when their dogs are perfectly healthy – only people are so used to seeing overweight dogs that they are healthy animals now appears malnourished. Obese pets suffer from many of the same diseases as humans; Diabetes (mostly cats), arthritis, joint pain, and various chronic inflammatory diseases have been linked to obesity. But the good news is that we can solve the obesity problem in pets much more easily than we can in humans because we are in complete control of our pet’s diet.

Does being a veterinarian change the way you look at your own pets?

The short answer is yes, I always monitor the general health of my own pets, probably more than most. Owning my own pets also influences my veterinary practice. When advising clients, I often ask myself: “If that were my pet, what would I do?” Just because you can do something doesn’t necessarily mean in modern medicine that you should too – for example an animal at the end of its life To maintain life when it no longer has a good quality of life. I also always ask myself, “What can I do to improve the quality of life for my pets?” When it comes to new animal technology, I think about using it on my own pets. If the answer is yes, then I am ready to use it on my clients’ pets.

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