The Best Online Pet Nutrition Resources
BY DR ANNABEL ROBERTSON - AUGUST 12, 2019 - VETERINARY PRACTICE
Enjoy reading our blogs and want to further your knowledge in companion animal nutrition? The following is a list of my favourite free online nutrition resources. With this concise list, you’ll soon be the go-to person in your clinic for all things nutrition.
WSAVA have developed a series of pet nutrition resources to help vets and nurses in practice. These include: A nutritional assessment checklist, dietary history form, body and muscle condition scoring charts and feeding guidelines for hospitalised patients. In addition, they have also developed some fantastic resources for pet owners such as the savvy dog and cat owners guide to nutrition on the internet. Let’s face it; we are all guilty of using Dr Google. We are never going to be able to stop people from researching on the internet but at least we can provide some guidelines on how they should be interpreting this information.
The Mark Morris Institute (MMI) is a leading education companion animal nutrition education provider. MMI was founded in honour of Dr Mark Morris Snr, a pioneer in the field of companion animal nutrition. If this name sounds familiar, it’s because Dr Mark Morris founded Hill’s Pet Nutrition back in the early 1940s. MMI also publishes the Small Animal Clinical Nutrition (SACN) text book, which is one of the most well-known and trusted pet nutrition resources by veterinary practitioners. The soft copy of the book can be downloaded for free via the MMI website.
This site provides a series of tools and resources that the whole veterinary healthcare team can use. Of particular use are the sections covering communicating nutritional recommendations to clients, patient assessment and creating nutritional plans.
With around 50% of dogs and cats classified as overweight or obese, getting pets to successfully lose weight is one of our biggest nutritional challenges. Talking about weight with clients can be a difficult conversation, but the problem of pet obesity cannot be left unaddressed. The Hill’s Healthy Weight Protocol is an objective and clinically proven diagnostic tool to help you talk about weight and reinforce your recommendations with clients. The site allows you to accurately assess an overweight patient’s ideal weight using body fat index charts and morphometric measurements, create a customised feeding plan and monitor progress in order to keep patients on track to successful weight loss.
Not only do Tufts offer a Clinical Nutrition Service, but they also have a blog. The blogs written by veterinary nutritionists cover a range of popular and sometimes controversial topics including updates on diet-associated dilated cardiomyopathy, home cooking, supplements, feeding pets human food, nutritional needs of cats and more. This site will equip you with the answers to all your clients’ nutritional queries.
If you are after a concise guide to pet food standards, ingredient definitions and descriptive terms, it is all available via this website. The site also provides information on how to read a pet food label if you need a quick refresher.
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Dr Annabel Robertson BVSc (Hons) MANZCVSc MBA, Hill’s Professional Consulting Veterinarian
Annabel graduated from the University of Melbourne with honours in 2008. Since then she has worked as a small animal veterinarian in private practice in Australia and the UK. She also completed an internship in small animal medicine during this time, sat her membership in small animal internal medicine in 2012, and finished her MBA in 2015. Annabel joined the Hill’s team in 2015 as a professional consulting veterinarian in Melbourne.