healthy-dog-challengeGlobal Pet Foods, the largest Canadian-owned chain of specialty pet food and supply stores, is currently running a Healthy Pet Challenge to encourage pets and owners alike to decrease inches from their waist. I chatted with Global Pet Foods’ Director of Operations, Sarah Beaton, to learn what exactly this challenge is all about, what the best diet-conscious pet foods are on the market today and why being aware of body condition can extend a pet’s life.

Could you tell me in your own words what the Health Pet Challenge is all about?
The Healthy Pet Challenge came about because our franchise sees a lot of people coming through doors looking for healthy product recommendations.

Over 50% of pets are overweight and as our catchphrase is “Canada’s healthy choice for pets” we want to be a leader in terms of helping people help their pets.
Global-Pet-Foods-healthy-pet-challengeWhat will this challenge help change?
This sort of challenge is to get people to help their pets get moving. Conditions like diabetes and cancer are also increasing in pets, and the human population is becoming more sedentary. This is a challenge for people to be mindful of those things, while challenging them to be active with their pets for a minimum of 45 minutes a day.

We know the bond between pet and owner is so strong; we want people to be able to enjoy their pets for a really long time. Of course, by participating in this challenge, it’s not to say that a dog or cat won’t develop health issues, but embracing a healthy lifestyle can minimize those risks.

How can people participate in this challenge?
People register their pet profile through Global Pets. All of our stores have a scale so pet parents can weigh their pets. We also measure a pet’s body conditioning score, which is a way of following key indicators to see if pet is overweight, because weight doesn’t always say everything.

The challenge runs until end of August, but we hope pet parents will continue afterwards. We hope this challenge will kickstart a lifetime of healthy habits.

Will this challenge help humans live healthier too?
Yes, this should also help people with their own health. Typically pet parents are healthier, because they have to go out and walk the dog. Hopefully this challenge will have a dual benefit.
dog-foods-for-overweight-dogsWhat foods would you recommend the most for overweight pets who are going on a diet?

1. Canine Caviar – only alkaline based pet food on the market. The benefits of that are because of the alkalaine base it helps reduce the risk of pets getting cancer, becaue the acidity of one’s diet

2. Natural Balance – (this company is sponsoring the challenge and supplying the weight scales in Global stoes) Fat Dog and Fat Cat foods are targeted towards pets who are very overweight. They also have another reduced-calorie formula that can help pets lose the weight.

3. Nature’s Harvest – exclusively carried in Global Pet Foods – made in Canada, intended to help pets get a nutritionally balanced meal.

Why don’t you think more people view obesity in pets as the danger it really is?
I think a lot of people don’t realize what healthy body condition is. If people don’t know better, how can they live better? It all comes down to education.

Global is more than just a store, we are a group of educators. The people who run our stores are very involved and passionate about world of pets. They complete all sorts of training to really understand the benefits of a proper pet diet and then pass that information along to pet parents. If you don’t know, you don’t know, but we always encourage a learning process.

Can pet parents visit your store with health questions beyond this challenge?
Overall we just want pet parents to be very mindful of pet health. We feel that as a pet specialty retailer it is our duty to help pet parents with health concerns. Healthy Pet Care Specialists are in any of our stores — ready to help.


I should also mention that the Healthy Pet Challenge comes with all sorts of amazing prizes, including free Natural Balance Pet Food for a year as a grand prize!

Here’s to healthy living ladies and gents! xo

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