Moab Happenings Archive
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PET HAPPENINGS - February 2024

The Cost of Pet Food
Provided by Jessica Turquette, owner of Moab BARKery

Everyone is feeling the pinch of rising costs – including pet parents. Inflation, supply chain challenges, raw materials shortages, labor and transportation issues have all have factored into higher prices for pet products. And while some items are luxury goods for special occasions, every dog and cat has to eat, making pet food an essential – and expensive – element of pet ownership.

One may think saving on pet food means picking the cheapest bag. But that’s not necessarily the case. All pet food is not made equal. And selecting food based simply on the price tag may ultimately impact the overall health and wellness of your pet.

In general, kibble will always be the least expensive. More expensive is wet (canned), then fresh made cooked (refrigerated), then raw and freeze dried as the most expensive. Often kibble is used as a base and higher quality foods are added as toppers, or a small portion of the meal to enhance quality without breaking the bank.

Food is all about ingredients, so read the label. A good pet food is high in:
Whole, natural ingredients like meat, fruits and vegetables
Digestible, ancestral grains like barley, oatmeal, rice, millet, milo, chia or quinoa
For pets which cannot tolerate grains, then pumpkin or sweet potato
And avoiding corn, wheat, soy and by-products or rendered ingredients

Think of your own eating habits. Fast food may seem to cost less per meal for our family, but we know the nutritional value isn’t ideal for everyday consumption. Just like we wouldn’t feed our children fast food for every meal, we shouldn’t feed low quality diets to our four-legged family members. A healthy meal may cost a few cents more but ultimately leads to a better lifestyle for both pets and people.

Several factors weigh into your overall cost of pet food, its not just the price of the bag. Consider these 3 factors:
Feeding Guidelines – A better food can be used less per feeding due to the higher nutritional value and caloric density. As such, a 25 lb bag of higher quality food can last longer…and ultimately cost less per feeding…than a 25 lb bag of pet food produced of fillers and lower quality ingredients. Do the math! Determine the cost per meal:
· Price of Bag / # of lbs or cups = Cost per lb or cup
· Determine optimal daily feeding guideline from packaging based on your pet’s weight and activity level
· Multiply Cost per lb / cup x daily feeding amount = Cost per day

Bioavailability - The term bioavailability refers to the proportion or fraction of a nutrient, consumed in the diet, that is absorbed and utilized by the body. Foods with higher meat protein content, as well as pre- and pro-biotics for digestive support, will have a higher bioavailability. And a pet food consisting of more bioavailable ingredients can be fed less (and a bag last longer) while still providing optimal nutritional value for a robust body, strong bones, and shining coat.

Vet Bills – When factoring the cost of pet food, consider other expenses you may be able to avoid. Vet bills are a huge component to pet ownership. And while sometimes you find a dog or cat who luck out with great genetics, healthy food can contribute to better overall pet wellness and optimal weight management. And that can result in fewer vet visits, surgeries and other expensive medical procedures. A few dollars spent upfront on quality food can equate to ‘preventative care’ to avoid future bills and possibly allow them to lead a longer, healthier life.

We choose the food we eat because it’s good for us AND tastes good. Your pets deserve the same. High quality food, filled with natural ingredients, will be something your dog or cat wants to eat. Looking forward to meal time. Giving them more energy while keeping them satiated and feeling full rather than hungry all day. Providing a foundation for solid bone growth, dental care and optimal weight. And did we mention less poop? All while saving money over their long, healthy life.

Dog-Friendly Walks/Hikes
in the Moab Area

Corona Arch - Easy/Moderate. 1.3 Miles one way. Trailhead is 25 minute drive from Moab.
North on US-191 to Potash Road (Utah 279).

Mill Creek Pathway - Easy. 1.1 Miles. Little to no driving. Starts at the intersection of 100 South and 100 West,
a block off of Main Street.

Portal Overlook - Hard. 2.0 Miles one way. Trailhead is 20 minute drive from Moab.
North on US-191 to Potash Road (Utah 279).

Grandstaff Canyon - Moderate. 2.0 Miles one way. Trailhead is 10-minute drive from Moab.
North on US-191 to the River Road (Utah 128)

Visit MoabBARKery website

Dog Friendly Walks/Hikes in the Moab Area
Trail or Walk Difficulty Length
(one way)
Proximity to Downtown
MillCreek Pathway
easy 1.1 miles Little to no driving
Starts at 100 S & 100 W
Portal Overlook
(trailhead @ Jaycee Park)
Hard 2.0 miles 25 min drive N on US-191 to W on Utah 279 (4.2 miles)
Moab Rim Hard 3.0 miles
(to Hidden Valley trail)
8 minute drive 2.6 miles down Kane Creek Blvd from US-191
Negro Bill Canyon
(aka William Grandstaff Canyon)
Moderate 2.0 miles 10 minute drive N on US-191 to
W on Utah 128, 3 miles
Hunter Canyon Easy 2.0 miles 25 minute drive (mild off-road)
7.5 miles down Kane Creek Blvd from US-191
Corona Arch Trail Easy/Moderate 1.5 miles 25 minute drive N on US-191 to
W Utah 279 (10 miles)
Hidden Valley
(trailhead at end of Angel Rock Rd)
Hard 2.0 miles 10 minute drive S on US-191
3 miles to Angel Rock Rd
Fisher Towers
(trailhead 2.2 miles off Utah 128)
Moderate 2.2 miles 35 minute drive N on US-191 to Utah 128, then 21 miles

Tips for enjoying your time with your dog here in the Moab area:

  • Bring lots of extra water for you and your dog.1 gallon per day for every 60lbs of dog!!
  • Don’t let dogs chase wildlife (especially coyotes, they can lead dogs into an ambush).
  • In the city, dogs are required to be leashed, but on public lands off leash with voice control is allowed.
  • Slickrock and sand is very abrasive!  Check paw pads often, or buy and use booties.
  • If it’s over 85 degrees only consider early AM or late PM hikes, daycare or leave your dog at home.
  • Pack out my poop!  Seriously or the other hikers without dogs will eventually demand no dogs allowed!

To see past articles about animals, pets and their care check our archives.

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