A better way to understand your pet

Side By Side’s Pet Assessment creates a thorough health picture

Humans are living in an age of food enlightenment where the quality and balance of ingredients is considered crucial to optimal health. And yet when it comes to pet food, most people, guided by little more than broad industry recommendations mixed with vague notions of nutrition, purchase bulk kibble.

At Side by Side, founder Marney Prince knows that imposing a one-size-fits-all diet on the rainbow of animals that exists in this world is to underserve pets at best and invite health problems at worst. Like each person, she says, each pet comes with a unique set of health considerations, historical circumstances, genetics and lifestyle factors. The East meets West health approach packs herbs and nutrients into whole food nutrition. The assessment, now in an easy-to-use online format, asks about age and breed, but also about the animal’s temperament, the appearance of its tongue, their body condition score. It wants to know details of the animal’s  feeding rituals, how it socializes, where it likes to sleep and how much activity and exercise it gets in day-to-day life.

The goal, Prince said, is to be able to tailor each pet’s diet to its unique needs. And as a bonus: “Our assessment is a way to learn and understand what is going on with your pet and become a little closer and more bonded too”

Side by Side CEO Carol Bramson experienced this firsthand when she underwent an assessment for her dog Wrigley.

“I felt like I was getting acquainted with my pet like I never had before,” Bramson said. “The assessment session involves an owner in a way that a vet appointment falls short of.”

And instead of just using the data to spit out a diet recommendation, Side by Side uses it as a basis of understanding to begin building the right nutritional plan for each individual animal. The company also plans to keep in touch with owners and optimize a pet’s diet if lifestyle changes call for important modifications.

“Because it only makes sense,” Bramson added, “to apply the standards we have for ourselves to the pets we love like children. Quite frankly, here at Side by Side, we’re Moms and Dads too, and we want to take good care of our babies, including our fur babies –  and we want to help you do the same,” she said.