Pet food becomes even more tailored
Consumers can already buy food specially made for old and
young dogs, large and small dogs and dogs battling the bulge. Now comes food and
treats based on a dog's lifestyle, bite strength and
Pet food manufacturee Royal Canin
what it says is the first "lifestyle" dog food, for small dogs who live indoors.
The food is lower in fat to battle obesity and has a little something extra to
reduce stool odors, says spokeswoman Ann Hudson. The company has nine dog foods
specially made for certain breeds, including products introduced last year for
Shih Tzus, dachshunds and Chihuahuas. While a Labrador retriever benefits from
more protein and less fat to battle obesity, the picky-eating Chihuahua needs
flavor enhancers. The poodle gets sulfur-containing amino acids to help hair
curl, and the square-jawed bulldog gets an
S-shaped kibble for easier grasping.
Dog food and treat sales will be $10 billion this year in the USA, says
researcher Euromonitor International. Premium dog food is expected to account
for 50% of US dog food revenue this year, up from 35% in 1998, it says.
Texas veterinarian Bob Rogers urges consumer caution. Some foods are
based on excellent science, but others are just marketing-driven, he says. "I
don't know who to believe," he says.
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