We remain open to provide care for your pets. We are following the direction of government and regulatory authorities and have implemented hospital and visit protocols to keep both you and our team safe. For regular updates on our hours and visit protocols, please follow our social media platforms.


Let’s Talk About By-Products, Shall We?

Did you shudder at the thought of the word ‘by-products,’ in the title? It is a popular ingredient source found in most pet foods? I know some people do, and I’ve often wondered, ‘why?’

What do you believe a by-product is?
In a survey done by Pet MD, states that the majority of respondents believed that animal hair, teeth, and hooves are included in meat by-products, and that is not the case. AAFCO regulations expressly do not permit these body parts to be included in a by-product used in pet food.

The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) defines meat by-products as:

  • “The non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals. It includes, but is not limited to, lungs, spleen, kidneys, brain, livers, blood, bone, partially defatted low-temperature fatty tissue, and stomachs and intestines freed of their contents. It does not include hair, horns, teeth and hooves. It shall be suitable for animal food.”
  • Meat by-products are most parts of an animal other than its muscle tissue—including the internal organs and bones.
  • By-products include some animal parts that some Americans eat (such as livers, kidneys and tripe), but also parts that they typically do not eat. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) does not deem certain by-products safe and nutritious for other animals. Safe by-products such as udders and lungs, edible for human consumption, can be nutritious for other animals.

The nutrients found in common by-products – such as livers or kidneys are well utilized in processing pet food. For the body to make the protein required, a fair amount of amino acids must be present for that end nutrient profile to be created. Muscle meat only has so many nutrients to give.

By-products are nutritious – they are a highly digestible protein source and are a great source of fatty acids that aid in skin and coat health. It is also a great source of vitamins for optimal organ health and a mineral source that can aid in blood pressure regulation and heart and kidney health.

Don’t be scared by the word ‘by-product.’ It is an invaluable source of nutrients that help to optimize the nutritional value of your pet food.

If you have any questions, please give us a call at 905.857.5057.

Written by: Josie, RVT

Pet MD



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COVID-19: Additional measures we are taking

Dear Clients,

Due to the close contact that our work requires, we have taken additional measures to protect you and our team while providing care for your furry family members.

The following changes are effective as of Wednesday, March 18, 2020:

1. We are currently operating a “closed waiting room” policy to protect our clients and staff. When you arrive, please remain in your vehicle and use your cell phone to call us at 905-857-5057. We will take a history from outside of your vehicle, and bring your pet into the clinic for an examination with the veterinarian. We will then return to your vehicle with your pet to discuss our recommended treatment plan. If you do not have a cell phone please knock our door to let us know you have arrived and then return to your vehicle.

2. We are continuing to accept appointments for urgent or sick pets, as well as time-sensitive puppy/kitten vaccinations. All other services will be scheduled for a later time.

3. If you are ordering food or medications, please allow 3-5 business days as our suppliers are dealing with increased demand and are trying to fill orders as quickly as possible. We will advise you as soon as your order arrives. Please call us when you arrive to pick up your order, but do not enter the hospital. Our staff will bring your order to your car and take payment over the phone. You can also use our online store and have your food delivered directly to your home. To sign up for the online store, visit our website.

4. For the time being, we are not accepting cash as payment. Instead, we are taking payments over the phone.

5. Online consultations are now available! If you wish to connect with a veterinarian via message, phone or video, visit our website and follow the "Online Consultation" link.

Following the recommendations of our government and medical experts, we are doing our best to practice social distancing within the constraints of our roles. As such, we have taken measures to avoid both contracting and facilitating the spread of this virus.

Thank you for helping us be diligent for everyone's safety. As we have heard from all levels of government, the situation is fluid and any updates will be provided as changes occur.

- Your dedicated team at North Hill Animal Hospital