Types of Dog Food For Each Life Stage

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Dogs imageAssociation of Animal Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) statement on a dog food label verifies that the food provides complete and balanced nutrition for either:

  • puppies or kittens
  • pregnant or nursing pets
  • adult pets
  • all lifestages

Hill's enthusiastically supports AAFCO testing procedures, but we believe that no single food is appropriate for all lifestages.

Key points

  • If you see the words " ... for all lifestages" on a package, it means it's a puppy or kitten food.
  • Hill's® Science Diet® brand is committed to the lifestage concept.

The early years

In the early stages of life, young pets need high levels of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients to ensure proper growth.

Therefore, a pet food that claims to be "complete and balanced for all lifestages" must contain nutrient levels that are suitable for growth. Are the nutrient levels in foods for growth too high for older pets? We believe they are.

Too high, too low

The "one size fits all" pet food philosophy may sound attractive, but it goes against everything Hill's has learned in more than 60 years of clinical nutrition research. A food that's appropriate for growth will contain levels of fat, sodium, protein and other nutrients that are too high for the older pet. Likewise, a food that contains reduced levels of nutrients for older pets may be inadequate for growing puppies and kittens.

All things to all pets

Today, many pet food manufacturers offer lifestage foods for pets. They often tout the benefits of their foods for puppies and kittens, adults or seniors and how these foods are perfectly balanced for each of these lifestages.

However, many of these same companies also offer brands of pet food that carry the claim "... complete and balanced nutrition for all lifestages"!

Are the companies that manufacture these products truly committed to the lifestage concept? The answer is obvious.

A more than 60-year commitment

Choosing a Hill's® Science Diet® brand lifestage pet food gives you the peace of mind in knowing you're feeding nutrition from the company with a more than 60-year history of formulating pet foods with optimum nutrient levels.

Hill's Science Diet brand is committed to the lifestage concept. You will not find the words "... for all lifestages" on any Hill's Science Diet product.

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