Nutrients and high-quality ingredients are both important in a pet food. However, high-quality nutrients are especially vital because the body absorbs nutrients, not ingredients. The optimum nutrient blend is the result of quality ingredients that, along with careful input from our expert veterinary community, are formulated with these principles in mind:
- Ingredients should be selected for nutrients, quality and taste
- A balance of quality ingredients delivers protein, fat, carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins and minerals to meet a dog's nutritional needs
- No single ingredient makes a food better or worse; a dog food is the sum of its parts
- You can't assume a dog food is right for your dog simply by reading the ingredient list, because appropriate amounts of precisely formulated nutrients are just as important as ingredients.
A delivery vehicle
Nutrients include proteins, carbohydrates, fat, fiber, vitamins and minerals.
Ingredients are the delivery vehicles for these nutrients. For example, corn delivers carbohydrates, essential fatty acids and protein — nutrients needed for good health. As ingredient quality increases, so does a dog's ability to absorb and use the nutrients for optimum health.
Here's a close look at dog food ingredients, the primary nutrients they deliver and the health benefits they offer to dogs.
- Corn, rice, barley, sorghum — Carbohydrates for energy and other nutrients for healthy skin and coat
- Animal fat, fish oil and vegetable oil — Fats and essential fatty acids for energy, improved taste and healthy skin and coat
- Fresh meat, chicken, chicken meal, soybean meal and egg — High quality protein for muscle tone and development and healthy skin
- Cellulose, soybean mill run and beet pulp — Fiber sources that promote intestinal tract health; some are helpful in weight control
The optimum blend
You can't assume a food is right for your dog simply by reading the ingredient list, because nutrients are just as important as ingredients. Making a high quality dog food requires a precise blend of ingredients to meet a specific nutrient profile based on a dog's lifestage, lifestyle or disease condition. Hill's combines nutrient-rich, high quality ingredients to create balanced foods that have been trusted and recommended by veterinarians for more than 60 years-- just one of the reasons that Hill's Science Diet is the #1 veterinarian recommended dog food over any other brand.