You should always remember that all dogs are individuals, which means that a diet that’s perfectly fine for your friend’s dog could be completely inappropriate for your dog. You should consult your vet when preparing a daily diet for your beloved furry friend.
Domesticated dogs are essentially carnivores that consume some omnivorous foods. Vets recommend making sure that the food you give to your dog is not only complete but also balanced for its stage of life, and whether it has any medical issues.
It is perfectly acceptable to feed your dog a pure kibble diet. Alternatively, you can mix up their diet with some fish, raw or cooked meat, vegetables, and even rice.
Owners often feed their dogs a raw meat diet, and while it might be perfectly suited to some dogs, there are certain key considerations to keep in mind. According to experienced vets, you should do the following:
– Practice impeccable food hygiene since the risk of both you and your beloved pet getting a food-borne bacterial infection such as salmonella or campylobacter is high.
– Human-quality meat is preferable since some pet food products have preservatives that aren’t good for your dog’s health.
– The diet should be ideally formulated by a veterinary nutritionist. Many raw diets are appropriately balanced for the stage of life or medical conditions.
Cooked meat (boiled lamb or chicken) in small quantities can be a good option for your dog to eat, but cooked bones or even toxic substances, which may include onion sauces, among several others that could be present in the meat need to be avoided.
You can feed tinned salmon, tinned tuna, and tinned sardines in spring water as an occasional treat for your beloved pet, but you should always check for fish bones first.
You shouldn’t be scared to bulk out your dog’s meal with raw grated carrot or cooked pumpkin. According to vets, many dogs lack sufficient fibre in their diet, and including the grated carrot or cooked pumpkin can help in improving their bowel health. Meat-free dog treats might interest you also, with veganism becoming very popular in this day and age there is now a wide range of Meat Free Dog Treats.
Be careful to ensure that your dog does not consume the whole bone because this may lead to constipation.
One or two bones a week is generally sufficient to help get rid of plaque from teeth. Keep in mind that the bone should be large enough that the dog is unable to fit it in its mouth, and it should be raw since cooked bone can easily splinter thus obstructing the intestine or causing internal damage, which can be both fatal.
How Much Food Does Your Dog Need?
The quantity of food that your dog needs will mostly depend on the age, breed, and size of the dog, as well as how regularly it exercises. The important thing is to make sure you never underfeed or overfeed your dog. If you are unsure, have your dog’s diet, condition of its body, overall health and nutrition assessed by a vet.
Always make sure that your dog is properly hydrated, which essentially means ensuring that the water bowl is always filled up and changed on a daily, so that they can have some water whenever they want or need.
When it comes to assessing the weight and size of your dog, it is far more important to look at their body shape than their weight. You want the dog to be lean, meaning you should see a defined waist and feel the ribs after running your fingers firmly over the dog’s side. If that isn’t possible, it is diet time.
Obesity in dogs has been linked to diseases such as osteoarthritis and decreased longevity, which is rather unfortunate since it is completely preventable.