The Big Debate
A dogs diet, besides regular exercise, is the
most important part of responsible dog ownership.
50 years ago dogs lived on table scraps, and just 25 years ago the pet food market exploded to the multi trillion industry that it is today. Superstores cater for every pet type, age, condition. You have a choice of dry, moist, semi-moist, premium
priced and then there is the Raw Dog Food Debate.
Life expectancy of
dogs has increased as we become more and more aware of their dietary requirements.
Start right, with the correct puppy diet and keep human snacks to a minimum. Many of our small dogs, are
prone to being overweight as well as dental disease due to being over-pampered
by their doting owners.
A dogs diet should be made up of a combination of fats, carbohydrates,
proteins, vitamins, minerals and water in a balanced diet that provides
sufficient calories dependent on the activity and growth stage or age of the dog.
Major dog food companies have made enormous strides in providing a
scientifically balanced diet for dogs based not just on their weight, but
also breed specific requirements. Naturally, a high energy Chihuahua puppy diet, is going to be very different to a puppy diet for a large dog breed.
Dog food manufacturers have a variety of premium dog foods in the form of Therapeutic Diets for the ageing dog, for diabetes and the arthritic dog or for the
boisterous puppy and so many other conditions in between. There are
over 50 special dietary foods available and hundreds of "normal" dog food, for
small dog breeds as well as medium or large dog breeds.
A puppy diet should not consist of food intended for an adult dog, nor
should an overweight adult dog be given the high energy food intended for a growing puppy.
Advertisers of dog food, have bombarded pet owners with a guilt trip about buying high priced dog food. However, it is essential that you read the labels of the dog
food available in your local store, or veterinarians office and buy the best you
can afford, for the age, size and breed of dog that you own and love.
If your dog is energetic, has a healthy skin and coat and is at the correct
weight for his height and breed, then continue to buy your dog food of choice.
Consider changing your brand if your dog has health conditions, is stiff with arthritis, or is overweight. Naturally under these conditions, you would
purchase the specifically formulated dog food available for many dog health conditions suffered by our precious four legged friends.
The choice of dog food is enormous and it can be quite daunting for a loving
dog owner, deciding what choice of dog food to buy. The rule of thumb
though is premium manufactured dog food is well balanced,
nutritious, is scientifically proven to support the claims the pet food
manufacturers make. So read the labels!
Critical to your decision of what quality and type of food to give
your little pet is the quantity of dog food.
Free feeding is not
recommended as most dogs have no idea when to stop eating! Measure out his daily portion of food, correct for his age, weight and exercise level. Feed your dog in at least 2 portions per day. Our dogs are not wild, and there is no need to feed them as if they were. Wild
dogs may only eat twice a week, our dogs are domesticated (and often humanized) with totally different requirements and expectations.
An obese dog is the result of an ignorant, although probably over-loving owner. Don't fall into this trap . An overweight dog is as a result of "loving abuse". If you really love him, you will consider his weight and his health.
Overfeeding and lack of exercise is your
responsibility. An obese dogs diet is under your control.
Other Related Articles on the Dog's Diet:
Return from Dogs Diet to Dog Food
Go to About Small Dog Breeds Home Page