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GRACIEGIFT 4920Pet food is a subset of animal feed.

Pet food is defined as any commercial (i.e., offered for sale, sell exchange or barter) feed prepared and distributed for consumption by dogs or cats.
1. Complete and balanced foods are pet foods.
2. Treats/snacks are pet food.
3. Nutrient supplements (vitamins, minerals, fatty acids) are pet food.
4. Nutrient-added waters are pet food.
5. Edible chews (rawhide, hooves, pizzles) are also pet food under the law, but may be exempt from state registration and labeling requirements under specified conditions.rawhidefordogs

Non-nutritional supplements (herbs and botanicals, metabolites) are not pet food, but rather may be subject to regulation as drugs. The law that allows these types of ingredients in “dietary supplements” for human consumption does not apply to animal products.

- AND -

Pet food sold - in a local farmers market is considered commercial feed.
bullysticksPet food sold - over the Internet is considered commercial feed.

Pet food sold - at a veterinarian’s office is considered commercial feed.

Pet food sold - in a local store is considered commercial feed.

Almost all of the states have some sort of registration or licensing requirements that must meet before a product can be offered for sale in the United States. Some states may exempt pet foods, but most do not.


 The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO)  a voluntary membership association of local, state and federal agencies charged by law to regulate the sale and distribution of animal feeds and animal drug remedies.