The long life and health of a pet is related to a properly composed diet. Not only one type of menu will serve our pet. It is necessary to follow the basic rules. We present a few of them.
Dog – a domesticated mammal, a subspecies of wolf. What follows from this?
First of all, the fact that giving him to eat the same food that people eat is a mistake. The type of human food that the quadruped receives can affect the health of the animal. It is true that the digestive system of the dog in some respects has adapted to what humans eat, but our pet should primarily feed on meat. Usually, food remains in its stomach for up to 6 hours, which translates into less frequent feeding than e.g. in case of a human. And absorbing too much fibre makes the digestion time longer, which can lead to health problems
What should I feed my dog?
You can choose from ready-made dry or wet food. Sometimes a special type of feeding is also used, namely the BARF meat diet. Ready-made dog foods of good brands are complete food. This means that they provide the dog’s body with the necessary nutrients and trace elements. Their dosage depends on the weight and breed of the dog; we should follow the indications on the label. Sometimes they are divided into products designed for small, medium, large and giant breeds. The factors that characterize the type of food are:
- age: we have food for puppies and juniors (6 – 12 months), adults (up to 8 years old), seniors (over 8 years old),
- special physical effort – e.g. sports dogs, working dogs,
- castration: for dogs after such a procedure, a diet is designed that does not allow too rapid and harmful weight gain
Veterinary foods, or what kind of foods?
There are times when our pet’s health declines. Proper diagnosis by a veterinarian allows to choose the right type of treatment and support the convalescent with an appropriate diet. It is especially important in case of liver and kidneys problems, sometimes also in case of skin disorders, e.g. due to food allergy. Then the indicated veterinary food will be appropriately selected for the state in which the animal is. Also in case of obesity of the animal it may be necessary to implement food with the inscription “obesity”, which can be recommended only by a vet
What about supplementation and bones?
If you feed your dog raw meat, it’s important to make sure it’s in the right proportions. It should make up 50% of the meal volume, with 25% fillers and 25% vegetables. The appropriate supplementation for your pet is also given in consultation with your veterinarian. Feeding your dog bones is problematic. He should not be given cooked bones to eat, which lose their hardness and break, leaving chips; these can damage the pet’s digestive tract. The same goes for poultry and rabbit bones, which must be completely excluded from the diet. Raw beef bones can be given, but not in very large quantities.
Feeding your dog – how often should you feed him?
The frequency of feeding depends largely on the age of the animal. Feeding puppies is introduced gradually from the age of 3 weeks. After that, the frequency of feeding changes with age:
- 5 weeks: 5 – 6 times a day,
- 6 – 8 weeks: 4 times a day,
- 9 weeks: 6 months – 3 times a day,
- from 7 months: 2 or 3 times a day (especially in winter).
An adult dog should be fed twice a day; preferably in the morning and in the evening. This should be done 12 hours apart. Some people prefer a more generous feeding of once a day. This is not wrong, but can lead to stomach problems in large dogs
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