Prescription Diets for Pets
If your pet has a health condition, your veterinarian may prescribe a prescription diet. You may be wondering how these diets differ from standard pet food, or if your pet can benefit from a prescription diet. At Costa Mesa Animal Hospital, in Costa Mesa, CA, we use Royal Canin and Hills Pet Nutrition as part of a prescription diet to treat or manage certain health conditions.
What are Prescription Diets?
Royal Canin and Hills Pet Nutrition may seem similar to standard pet food, but there are some important differences. Prescription pet food is formulated to treat or manage a specific condition and must be prescribed by a veterinarian. Pet food is overseen by the Association of American Feed Control Officials, or AAFCO. They regulate the labeling and ingredients of pet food, and set the standards for the industry.
Prescription pet foods must meet the AAFCO standards, but they are overseen by the Center for Veterinary Medicine, or CVM. The CVM is a branch of the Food and Drug Administration. The pet food manufacturer must prove the diet is effective for the treatment of the specific condition or conditions it claims to treat.
In some ways, it is similar to medications and supplements designed for humans. For example, a food or supplement can claim to support joint health, but it cannot claim to treat joint issues without going through the FDA process. Pet foods can claim to support a certain aspect of health, but they cannot claim to treat a condition without approval from CVM.
What Conditions are Treated by Prescription Diets?
Royal Canin and Hills Pet Nutrition diets are most often prescribed for digestive issues and allergies. Diets for digestive issues are carefully balanced and easier to digest than standard pet food. They are ideal for pets who experience vomiting or diarrhea. They may also be prescribed for pets with infection, colitis, pancreatitis, and difficulty digesting food.
Hypoallergenic diets are formulated for pets who have food intolerances or allergies. Common signs of allergy include itchy skin, rash, and stomach upset. If allergies are suspected, your veterinarian will test your pet for allergies. Then they can prescribe a diet that does not include the foods your dog is allergic to, while still providing adequate nutrition.
Other types of prescription diets include:
- Kidney diets
- Urinary tract diets
- Weight management
- Diabetes diets
- Joint support diets
Veterinary Care at Costa Mesa Animal Hospital
If you think your pet could benefit from Royal Canin and Hills Pet Nutrition, contact us at Costa Mesa Animal Hospital. We provide veterinary care for Costa Mesa, Newport Beach, and Fountain Valley residents. Our full-service animal hospital can provide complete care for your pet, including wellness and preventive care and emergency treatment.