IMPORTANT NOTICE: Due to high demand, please be aware that we are now booking wellness exams & vaccine appointments 3-4 weeks in advance. Starting January 1, 2024, non-special order refills require 48-72 hours notice, while special orders & outside prescriptions need 5-7 business days notice.

Nutrition Counselling

Creating a nutrition plan that will promote health during all stages of your pet's life.

Once every year, your veterinarian will want to examine your pet's diet. We view pet care as a collaboration with pet parents and nutrition counselling sessions ensure that we are all on the same page. All pets have different dietary needs based on their health, breed, and age, so a nutritional consultation will cater to the unique needs of your cat or dog. By having a balanced diet, we can prevent certain illnesses and promote growth and development in your pet.

Why do pets need nutrition counselling?

Throughout your pet's life they need specific foods to stay healthy. Having a proper diet will get them through all stages of their life. Nutrition counselling is beneficial to pets because it teaches pet parents about the correct portion sizes, which foods to feed their pet and how to read food labels. This in turn ensures that pets have ample energy, strong immune system, great mental health and it lessens their chances of developing certain diseases.

What human foods are unsafe for my pet?

Before you introduce your pet to any new foods you should discuss it with their veterinarian. Many human foods are toxic to pets and can trigger a reaction that can be fatal. Here are some ingredients that are unsafe for cats and dogs:

  1. Alcohol
  2. Caffeine/coffee
  3. Garlic and onions
  4. Chocolate
  5. Grapes and raisins

How can nutrition heal my pet?

The food you provide your pet gives them nutrients and sustenance that can help them thrive. Prescription diets can be used to help pets suffering from conditions like arthritis, diabetes, and obesity. At Glenora Family Pet Clinic, we carry a large variety of veterinary prescriptions and maintenance diets for dogs and cats. In addition, we carry over the counter products like shampoos, nutritional supplements and treats. If your pet is on a special diet that we don't normally carry, call us at 780-428-8802 and we will order it for you.

Common Pet Food Myths

  • By-products
  • Natural Organic
  • Corn
  • Gluten free


By-products are an excellent source of protein and other nutrients.A by-product is any ingredient that is produced or left over when some other product or ingredient is made (broth and gelatin are examples of meat by-products in human foods). By-products in pet foods that meet Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) guidelines come from clean animal parts other than meat, such as liver, kidneys and other organs.

• By-products can be more nutritious than meat alone

• Muscle meat is deficient in many nutrients, including calcium, other minerals and vitamins. Many of these missing nutrients are abundant in meat by-products or poultry by-products

• By-products are also an excellent source of protein and amino acids

• By-products can be an excellent source of protein and amino acids (poultry by-product meal contains 60%–70% protein and can be highly digestible)

Natural Organic

“Natural” and “organic” do not mean the same thing.

In grocery stores and pet stores, the terms “natural,” “organic,” and “holistic” are frequently and freely used on packages to imply that foods with these labels are healthier than those without. Natural and organic foods are not necessarily healthier than conventional foods. The USDA makes no claims that organically produced food is safer or more nutritious than conventionally produced food. Organic food differs from conventionally produced food in the way it is grown, handled and processed. Although pet foods labeled as natural, organic and/or holistic are increasingly popular, the use of these terms can be misleading or confusing when trying to choose the best food for your pet. These terms do not guarantee better nutrition for your pet.


• The Association of American Feed Control Officials defines and regulates “natural” for pet food and animal feed

• It means that the feed or ingredient is derived solely from plant, animal or mined sources that have not been produced by a chemically synthetic process

• Natural feed and ingredients do not contain any additives or processing aids that are chemically synthetic

• However, chemically synthesized vitamins, minerals and other trace nutrients are acceptable


• The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Organic Program defines and regulates “organic” for pet food and human food

• “Organic” refers to the way a crop or animal is grown, raised and handled

• Organic crops must be grown on land free from pesticides for three years

• Organic livestock is fed organic feed, is not given antibiotics or hormones and has access to the outdoors

• Not all foods labeled organic contain only organic ingredients. There are four levels of organic foods: 100% organic, Organic (95%), Made with organic (70%–95%), <70% organic

• The USDA organic seal shows that the pet food is certified, pet foods with that seal must contain 95%–100% organic ingredients.


• It is a vague term that can have many meanings

• As it refers to pet food, “holistic” is not defined or regulated by any organization


Corn is an excellent source of many nutrients.It is a myth that plant-based ingredients (like corn) are poorly digested fillers that provide little nutritional value and can cause allergies.

• Corn provides a good source of carbohydrates, protein and essential fatty acids in the diets of dogs and cats

• Corn can be found in many forms, all of which can contribute to nutritious diets. For example, corn gluten meal contains 60% to 70% protein and is an excellent source of essential amino acids. And whole corn or corn meal provides highly digestible carbohydrates as an energy source

• Corn is a good source of linoleic acid, an essential fatty acid required by both dogs and cats

• It also contains abundant amounts of antioxidants, such as vitamin E and beta-carotene

• Corn gluten meal is easy to digest, making its nutrients readily available to your pet

• Corn gluten meal contains many essential amino acids, so when it is properly combined with other protein sources, it can contribute to highly digestible and nutritious diets

• Corn is not a common cause of allergies

• Dogs and cats can develop allergies to any protein, including meats and grains. However, it is estimated that only 10% of allergic skin conditions in dogs and cats are caused by food1

• Corn does not appear on the list of most common food allergies in dogs or cats

• The most common food allergies in dogs are beef, dairy products and wheat, followed by lamb, egg, chicken and soy

• In cats, the most common food allergies are beef, dairy products and fish

Gluten free

Gluten-free diets are not healthier than regular diets. Gluten from various grains is a nutritious ingredient that provides a concentrated source of protein in pet foods.

Gastrointestinal problems associated with gluten are rare in dogs.

• Gluten-induced enteropathy (celiac disease) is very rare in dogs and has been reported primarily in Irish Setters

• Pets with celiac disease react to the proteins (gluten) in wheat, rye and barley

• The protein in corn gluten does not cause GI problems, even in individuals with celiac disease

Gluten is an excellent source of high quality protein.

• Gluten is the concentrated protein from grain after all the starch has been removed

• Corn gluten meal contains approximately 60% to 70% protein

• It provides essential amino acids that form the building blocks for protein

• Gluten is highly digestible

Gluten provides structure to pet food.

• Just as wheat gluten is added to breads to enhance the texture, a small amount in pet food helps canned formulas, kibbles and treats hold their shape

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