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Learn : Research and Development

About the Nom Nom Health Assessment

In November of 2018, we launched our health assessment, an in-depth survey that 15,000+ pet parents like yourself have completed to date, creating one of the largest and most extensive repositories of dog and cat data anywhere. The information shared with us has helped contribute to peer-reviewed pet science, develop new products and better understand your unique needs. Now, it’s time for us to give back to everyone who’s generously taken the time to tell us about their pets.

What we’ve been up to lately

Over the last few months, we’ve been hard at work using both traditional statistics and machine learning techniques to uncover interesting information from our data. In our analyses, we’ve asked many different important questions, such as:

  • Which pets are more likely to develop which medical issues?
  • What are risk factors for health conditions that pet parents can proactively address?
  • What are some early warning signs of disease that pet parents can look out for?

In the meantime, we’ve also taken some time to unearth some fun facts about our pet population, such as:

  • What are the most common pet names?
  • Does dog personality differ by breed?
  • What are some differences between dogs and cats?

Some of our findings have corresponded with what pet scientists have already discovered in the past, meaning that our data and analyses are reliable. However, we’ve also uncovered some facts that have never been published before, which we believe can guide pet parents in better caring for their furry friends.

Introducing our Insights Reports

You spoke, and we listened. Before developing our Insights reports, we conducted extensive interviews with pet parents to understand what they wanted out of their reports. We identified some common themes that appeared over and over again, including:

  • How does my pet compare to others within its breed?
  • How can I adopt lifestyle changes that will make the biggest difference in my pet’s health?
  • How can I find personalized information and products tailored to the needs of my pet?

We wanted to develop a best-in-class health report that would answer these questions and more. Unlike other pet health information that can be found on the internet, our reports are 100% based on real data, statistically valid, and personalized for each pet. Moreover, all of our recommendations have been developed by our team of board certified veterinary nutritionists & PhD animal nutritionists, alongside our expert in-house R&D team.

What you get in the report

Currently, there are three reports for dog parents, with two cat reports in active development. For our very first batch of reports, we wanted to focus on topics that mattered to our pet parents: weight, gastrointestinal distress, and joint issues.

Weight Report

While some pets are more likely to be overweight or obese, all pet parents can benefit from implementing healthy practices that can help our pets maintain a healthy weight. In this report, we share the relationships we’ve identified between risk factors and weight issues. 

Some of our findings are unsurprising — we found that the more exercise a pet receives, the less likely they are to be overweight. Some of our findings validate our work in pet health — we found that pets eating fresh food are less likely to be overweight than those eating kibble or canned food. 

Some of our findings are completely new — we found that pets who receive probiotics are less likely to be overweight. Given the importance of these findings, we’ve already submitted a manuscript for peer review, but you can read it here first! 

Gastrointestinal (GI) Report

Many of the pets in our database show signs of GI distress, whether it’s a diagnosed medical condition or symptoms such as diarrhea and vomiting. We wanted to help you understand what’s within the normal range, what signs to keep an eye out for, and when to take your pet to the vet. In addition to identifying risk factors for gastrointestinal disorders, we break down some commonly observed symptoms and their relationships with actual GI conditions. 

We also offer further insights into your pet’s condition, for example whether diarrhea is originating from issues in the large or small intestine, and what could be causing different kinds of vomit. While your vet is the ultimate source for diagnosis and treatment, this report can help guide you and let you know what to expect.

Joint Issues Report

Many pets will develop some type of joint issue, especially as they advance in age. In this report, we show how the risk for certain conditions such as arthritis, dysplasia and luxating patella change over the course of a lifetime for dogs of different weights. We identify the best strategies for preventing the development of joint issues, as well as how to manage joint issues that may already have developed. 

What’s next for Insights

While the very first versions of our reports are currently live, we have big plans for improving current reports and developing new ones. In addition to more reports for dogs — allergies, oral health and behavioral issues are currently underway — we’ll also be releasing similar reports for our cat parents. 

For pet parents who have purchased the microbiome kit, we’ll start to integrate information between our reports to deliver a totally personalized experience. The more data we receive, the more value we can add to these reports, so make sure to take our health assessment if you haven’t already!