Frequently Asked Questions
Choosing the best food for your pet can be a tricky business – there are so many brands to choose from. Here is a selection of some of the most common questions we get asked about feeding cats and dogs.
We are frequently asked to suggest a diet from our range to support dogs or cats with kidney disease. Our foods are made using the very best ingredients, grain and additive free but are not designed specifically for renal conditions. The Little BigPaw Range is very palatable so if a pet is refusing a specific prescription kidney diet then Little BigPaw is a good second choice. Read our Blog for more information.
We now state Calorie and Phosphorus content under Composition on all of our product pages. Whether you are watching their weight or are being careful because of dietary requirements, Little BigPaw provides you with all the information you need to choose the best food for your pet and remember it’s more about what we don’t put in our recipes than what we do !
Did you know that the worst meats for carbon footprint are beef, lamb and then pork, which is one of the reasons we don’t use these in any of our recipes !! We do use lots of locally sourced, high quality British meat in our recipes with absolutely no grains.
Good quality pet food should be scientifically formulated to provide optimal nutrition for the pet. By this, we mean that it should provide all the necessary nutrients in sufficient quantities and in the correct balance. The ingredients should also be very digestible (>90%) and easily absorbed and utilised by the body. Since cats are carnivores, and dogs utilise meat proteins far better than vegetable, high quality food should also contain a significant quantity of meat, and should be free from materials that are commonly associated with dietary intolerances and allergies, such as beef, wheat, soya, and artificial colours, flavours & preservatives. It should also be very palatable and cooked correctly, to eliminate harmful microbes and maximise the digestibility of the starch.
Little BigPaw only contains the best quality wholesome ingredients prepared with love and to the very highest production standards.
While a diet free from grain is not necessarily essential for every dog and cat, an increasing number of pets are developing intolerances to an increasing array of grains. Therefore, to be absolutely certain that the carbohydrates do not cause any adverse reactions, grain-free diets are the best option.
Little BigPaw contains no grain and no wheat – we use gently steamed vegetables to provide essential carbohydrates.
A complete food is one that is nutritionally balanced and does not need to be supplemented with anything else. By feeding a complete food you know that your pet is getting all the nutrition it needs.
All Little BigPaw foods are totally complete.
A hypoallergenic food is a food that has been designed to minimise the possibility of causing an allergic response as it contains relatively few or no potentially irritating substances. At Little BigPaw we try to use single source meats in all our recipes to reduce the risk of allergic reaction in your pet. We only use natural ingredients and our recipes remain constant. We do not use meat derivatives which can contain many different types of cheap meats. So all our recipes are hypoallergenic which means they can be fed to all pets – even ones with very sensitive stomachs.
Ingredients that would constitute a compromise in quality would include: poor quality meat & fish meals, a lower inclusion of fresh meat & fish, the addition of inexpensive filler (e.g. cereal by-products), high levels of carbohydrate (>30%), higher density/poorly cooked food, and unbalanced and poorly formulated nutrients. All of these things would lead to poor skin & coat condition, excessive faeces volume (and poor consistency), reduced appetite, and less vitality.
Little BigPaw only uses the best ingredients – none of our recipes contain any of the above inferior quality ingredients. We know that your pet deserves the very best!
For cats, a high percentage of meat is not just desirable. It is essential. Whilst they can exist on diets with a lower content, many long term health issues can be associated with this, such as urinary tract disease & crystals, obesity, and renal problems. There is no doubt that the higher the meat content; the better it is for the health of the cat.
Whilst dogs are more versatile and can cope better with lower levels of meat and animal ingredients, they will also have better health and overall well-being when fed a diet high in meat. Their anatomy, digestive system and physiology has evolved to eat, digest and utilise meat protein far better than vegetable material. However, having said this, there is certainly a nutritional benefit from incorporating other nutrients into the dog’s diet, such as vegetables and botanicals.
All our foods contain very high levels of meat and are 100% Natural – even down to little things like the Calcium content. To ensure we can stick with this important ethos and meet your pets nutritional needs we also add ground, cooked bone to each recipe. It is in no way harmful to your pet (they won’t even know it’s there!) and the natural acids produced by their stomach will break it down, but most importantly it ensures their calcium requirements are met.
At Little BigPaw we work with leading nutritionists to ensure that your pet gets a perfectly balanced wholesome diet that they will thrive on. And that will always be our promise to you.
The quality of the meat is certainly as equally important as the quantity. A single named meat source is much better than a diet that contains ‘meat derivatives’ or ‘meat meal’.
Fresh meats should be exactly that. Fresh. Many foods contain frozen and pre-processed meats, which will not provide optimum nutrition, as many nutrients will be lost or denatured. Again, fresh poultry and fish are able to provide this. Also, as with grains mentioned above, there is increasing belief that beef can cause intolerances in dogs, and so this is best avoided.
At Little BigPaw we use single source best quality meat, we keep our ingredients constant and we declare everything we use on the packet. We can guarantee continuous high quality and your pet will love you for it!
The fresh meat and fish used in Little BigPaw are truly fresh. They are obtained from fish and poultry (chicken & turkeys) that are killed for human consumption less than two days prior to their inclusion into the pet food. During this period they are maintained at a temperature of less than 4°C to ensure that there is absolutely no deterioration in quality. Also, as mentioned above, the materials used in the production of the meat and fish meals are equally fresh, and we work very closely in partnership with suppliers to ensure this is always the case.
In our view absolutely not. Dogs and cats cannot detect colour, and so this serves no nutritional purpose. Instead, many of the colours used in pet foods that are also used in human foods have been associated with neural problems in children, leading to their removal in many countries. Whilst similar scientific investigations have not been carried out in dogs and cats, it can easily be expected to be the same for puppies and kittens.
All our recipes are produced from natural products – we don’t use anything artificial at all – just natural goodness.
We believe that the high content of hypoallergenic animal-based ingredients is perhaps Little BigPaws number one benefit however, their UK provenance is possibly a close second place. The reasons for this can be summarised in three ways:
- Meat and meat meal from the UK is quite probably the best in the World. This is because it is a relatively affluent country, where there is an abundance of high quality meats that are surplus to requirement in the human food chain, and so these are available for pet food use. The moderate climate and small size of the UK also means that materials are transported and processed quickly and in cool conditions, which ensures less deterioration.
- Secondly, whilst the UK adheres closely to strict EU Regulations concerning safely and honesty, the meat industry also adheres to additional welfare and quality standards imposed by a strong supermarket sector. As a consequence, the human-grade meats that are used in Little BigPaw are provided under the same conditions.
- The processing technology and production knowledge utilised to prepare ingredients and cook Little BigPaw foods are amongst the best in the world. New technologies and techniques are frequently implemented in the UK first, as the super-premium pet food sector is growing strongly and is very receptive to these advances.
There are four simple rules:
- Meat should dominate the ingredient list. This will ensure that they receive the most appropriate nutrients for their digestive and metabolic systems.
- The food should be free from the main causes of dietary upsets, namely beef, wheat, soya, dairy, and artificial colours, flavours and preservatives.
- Whilst grain-free diets are not essential for all dogs, they are the least likely to cause digestive problems, and is a sign that the food does not compromise on cost.
- The recipe should contain some carefully selected vegetables and botanicals that have specific health benefits. A long, long list of many fruits & vegetables can often be an indication that they are added in minute, unhelpful quantities for marketing purposes, so check that their benefits are stated and understandable.
Little BigPaw foods are high in meat, grain free and totally natural: everything you need to be assured that you are feeding the very best to your pet.
Fussy pets tend to prefer a wet food. It smells better and it often tastes better to them. However, it is the quality of the ingredients that really matters. So whether you are feeding wet or dry it doesn’t matter so long as the ingredients are good.
Many wet foods contain poor quality ingredients and artificial additives which can cause problems to your pet. Read the label and understand what your pet is being fed so that you know you are feeding a good quality balanced diet.
We are delighted our products are available to buy from many of the best pet retailers in the UK. Currently you can find Little BigPaw in such stores as Pets Corner, JustforPets, Kennelgate and Dobbies. To find out where your nearest stockist is, contact us and we will be happy to help!