I think that this might be one of the most controversial topics that we cover in vet medicine. If you ask 10 veterinarians, you will get 10 different opinions on the benefits (or not) of good prescription food. Some prescription diets are designed to work with specific diseases.
I am not here to get involved in the controversy but I do believe that prescription/therapeutic diets are a valuable treatment for a myriad of diseases we have to face in vet medicine.
We have found that many of our most common diseases in our pets can be managed very effectively with nutrition: obesity, urinary problems, kidney problems, GI issues, etc.
The important thing to realize is that many of these diets are formulated specifically for the disease that you are trying to treat. For instance, kidney diets are often designed to control levels of protein to help limit the amount of phosphorus in the diet which can cause progression of kidney disease.
We also know that when we use nutrition in our favor to treat a disease, the success rate is high if pet owners adopt that diet. Why, you may ask? There is nothing easier than feeding your dog or cat. You have to do it every day and they won’t let you forget, you simply don’t have to finagle trying to get your dog or stubborn cat to try and take a pill. It is a win-win. I recommend that you do the research on the diet your vet is recommending. Understand that they will likely be more expensive than the foods you pick up at your local pet store but also understand that these diets have had years of research to support their creation and can be very effective treatments for many pet-related diseases.
– Dr. B