Diet is an essential factor in pet care. There are a wide variety of diet plans available today. It’s important to understand the dietary requirements of your pet
This can be a challenging task at times; subsequently, it’s recommended to consult your vet or a specialist to understand the need. Various parameters should be considered for choosing the diet including, breed type, size, age, gender, physical activity, allergies, etc. Different stages of a dog’s development have different needs, and their diet changes as they grow in age.
Puppy: Decisive stage for their development; that is why it is very important to give them adequate nutrition so that they grow strong and healthy.
Adult: As they grow, their activity level increases, and now, they need a high-nutrition diet with an adequate level of protein and calories to keep fit.
Senior: At this stage, they are not active as much, their health starts taking a toll. They need special nutrients and vitamins at this stage, so the diet should be planned accordingly.
As in humans, allergies in dogs are abnormal immune reactions to specific foods or substances. Something acceptable to most dogs can be harmful or even fatal to another dog. Fortunately, true allergies are rare, which are not to be confused with “food intolerances”, that is much more common and less serious.
Although most true allergies are diagnosed in young dogs, it can be due to genetics, underlying disorders, or exposure to a particular substance that can cause allergy, irrespective of age. So, watch out for any unusual symptoms.
Around 33 per cent of dogs in the world are overweight or obese. The cause is simple: they eat a lot and do not move enough to burn off excess calories.
The owner can resolve this problem by looking at how many calories your dog eats with food and how many it burns with exercise. Thus, one can adjust their diet to a diet formula and increase the exercise rate with extra walks.
Remember that reducing the amount of usual food is not always a solution since one could be breaking the ideal balance of nutrients. If you have performed a body-mass test on your dog and are in a perfect physical state. Then it will remain well fed and lose weight more effectively with a dog food specially formulated for weight loss. Moreover, they will not have to give up the pleasure of eating a fully satisfying portion.
Diet according to the breed
When it comes to feeding small breed dogs, it’s important to understand that they need a lot of energy although their mouths and stomachs are small. For example, a Pomeranian needs more than twice the calories per pound (approx. 450 g) than a Great Dane?
Small breed formulas are designed specially to meet these different needs.
They are dense in nutrients and high in calories (which is suitable for faster metabolism and lower stomach capacity), with more protein, more fat for extra energy, and easier to digest carbohydrates, plus B vitamins to stimulate metabolism. The dry kibbles are also smaller in size to accommodate their smaller mouths.
Give your dog raw food
Dogs are obligate carnivores, i.e., they consume meat to survive but require plants too in their diet. Hence, they have anatomical structures, like teeth to rip meat and the digestive system are prepared to digest
However, with the passage of time and domestication, these animals have gradually adapted to the consumption of processed foods. Still, their type of diet will remain unchanged irrespective of forms of consumption.
Therefore, dogs can be fed complete raw dog food without a problem, as long as this diet is not exclusively meat and is varied. Consumption of raw food also depends on life stage, physiological state, and activity level.
The heart of the matter is that a diet should include raw meat, bones, and waste, which mimics the food of a wild animal. Experts proposed in a rather transgressive way that some diseases could be related to industrial food and is best to avoid most. Henceforth, a diet similar to a wolf or a wild dog is much healthier for our dogs.
The benefits of those who give their dog raw food
Among those who give raw food to their dogs, it is common to hear the following observable benefits:
- They ate with more appetite even when they were rejecting other foods
- They have more energy and a better mood
- Suddenly they stop smelling and bad breath
- They had white teeth even when there was the previous presence of tartar
- Their fur is denser, smoother, and shinier
- They stay at their ideal weight
- Rheumatic and/or joint pain is reduced
- Itching and allergies are reduced and disappear
Though these are some basic requirements to be noted while planning the diet for a dog, it’s always important to understand the bodily needs and then make the necessary changes. Always look out for your dog and seek professional help as soon as it’s required.
Growing up with a dog is a luxury. Growing, changing, and evolving is an exciting experience for both the dog and the owner as it develops into bonds. Only those who have lived it can understand it. And on this path of growth, you must give them the best. For that, you have to understand what’s best for them to adapt to their nutritional and emotional needs.
Adapting its diet to the different stages of its life and guaranteeing physical activity according to its condition and needs are the two central pillars of caring for a dog. And it’s not wise to skip them.
Make sure to have a routine checkup with the vet to ensure their strong growth. Moreover, pets are more of a family than just someone to play with or guard you. Always keep your pets close and shower them with love. It’s important to understand that they also carry emotions. Maintain a healthy diet and a happy mind for your dog to stay active all long.