A recognised authority on pet nutrition, WALTHAM research encompasses multiple disciplines to investigate:

  • nutrient requirements for pet life stages and lifestyles
  • gastrointestinal health
  • energy requirements
  • immune function
  • skin and coat condition
  • oral health
  • feeding behaviour
  • clinical nutrition

Since the 1960s we have issued over 600 peer reviewed publications on companion animal nutrition. We share these key findings with the scientific and pet care communities, providing  benefits to pets across the globe.

Oral health

The WALTHAM™ oral health research group has been working with leading veterinary dentists and academics across multiple scientific disciplines for over 25 years to investigate oral diseases in pets.

Gum disease is one of the most widespread conditions in cats and dogs. If not detected, and left untreated, irreversible damage occurs that results in the loss of teeth and significant pain to the pet.

To design oral care solutions that are effective for pets, we need to understand the specific mechanisms underlying oral diseases in cats and dogs. WALTHAM™ research underpins Mars Petcare oral care brands and key insights are published in peer-reviewed journals to highlight the importance of pet oral care.

Since 2012, the WALTHAM Oral Health research group has published 12 peer-reviewed papers on gum disease in cats and dogs.

Human animal interaction (HAI)

“The human-animal bond is a mutually beneficial and dynamic relationship between people and other animals that is influenced by behaviours that are essential to the health and well-being of both. This includes, but is not limited to, emotional, psychological, and physical interactions of people, other animals, and the environment.”
JAVMA, 205(11)L:1675,1998

For over 40 years WALTHAM has been driving ground breaking research that explores the special relationship between humans and companion animals. This has been instrumental in understanding the benefits this relationship brings to both people and pets. As part of this commitment, we work with leading scientific institutions to advance and share knowledge of the positive and lasting benefits of pet ownership on human and pet health.

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Equine research

The WALTHAM Equine Studies Group, which is headed by Professor Pat Harris, is dedicated to advancing the science of horse nutrition and provides the science behind the SPILLERS®, BUCKEYE® NUTRITION and WINERGY® brands.


The WALTHAM Equine Studies Group partners with international collaborators to research equine nutrition and its role in the health, welfare, behaviour and performance of horses. We are committed to sharing the work with veterinarians, scientists and horse owners all around the world through journal papers, lectures and articles.
Between 2010 and 2016, the Equine Studies Group and its external collaborators published more than 200 scientific papers and articles in peer reviewed journals, textbooks, conference proceedings and educational manuals, in addition to numerous magazine and online articles.

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WALTHAM welfare standards

At the heart of our success is an approach that strives to look after our pets in an enriched environment with a high standard of care that ensures both their health and happiness, an approach we call Caring Science.

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Our pet welfare committee and researchers proactively work together to embrace the 3Rs of humane animal research: 

Replacement - we use alternatives to animals wherever possible: in vitro, in silico or human studies.

Reduction - Guided by our statisticians, studies are designed to use the minimum number of animals necessary for a clear outcome thereby avoiding study repetition.

Refinement - Animal welfare is a priority in all study designs and we aim to make research an enriching experience for our pets so that they are willing partners.

More on our welfare policy

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