Caring for a dog is a big responsibility, and dog ownership is not something to enter into lightly however this work will help you to successfully build a bond of love and trust with an important new member of your family.
How to Feed Your Dog? How Many Times a Day?
Nurturing a dog (Top 10 Best Blue Wilderness Dog Food Reviews) or cat is not as easy as it looks from the outside. Suddenly, you find yourself fretting over collars, shampoos, treats… Once you have finally picked the right food, then you have to decide which method of feeding you are going to use.
To keep them happy and healthy, and to maintain their optimal body condition, your dog’s regular adult diet needs to include an incredible 37 specific nutrients! These need to be carefully balanced across the five major nutrient groups: proteins, fats and oils, minerals, vitamins and carbohydrates. And of course, their diet needs to include water.
HOW MUCH TO FEED YOUR DOG:
The amount you feed your adult dog should be based on his or her size and energy output. For example, an animal with a normal activity level should receive what we call “maintenance” energy. A pampered lap dog may require just 10% of that, while an active pet who exercises regularly outdoors may require maintenance plus 20 to 40%.
You may need to adjust portions as you learn your dog’s ideal “maintenance” amount. Pet owners should always consult with their dog’s veterinarian to determine the best feeding schedule and types of foods for their pets.
Outside factors, like the temperature, can contribute to how much your dog should eat. Since keeping warm and cool require extra energy expenditure, extreme hot or cold weather can also increase a dog’s energy needs. Talk to your pet’s veterinarian about what to do when the mercury dips or soars.
CORN-as a dog diet:
If you look at the ingredients of the vast majority of major brand dog foods sold in your local grocery store you will see most of them contain some type of corn such as cornmeal. Fact: dogs are meat eaters; even their teeth tell us this. They do not have grinding molars, they have ripping canines. Have you ever heard of a farmer having issues with dogs raiding their corn fields? No, what we might hear is a dog raiding the chicken coop for meat.
Corn has been linked to many dog ailments such as allergies, joint swelling, bloat and there have been some cases of aflatoxin contamination associated with corn in dog food. The corn that is used in dog food is sometimes contaminated with mycotoxins (toxins from mold or fungi). Corn metabolizes in dogs similar to the way sugar metabolizes in humans. It’s like feeding a child foods high in corn syrup. The dog is not going to be as healthy and may experience energy rushes, crashes, hyperactivity and a hard time concentrating. Studies have also shown that high doses of corn can inhibit serotonin in the brain. Serotonin is an important chemical that reduces stress and anxiety.
Free feeding is when you fill a bowl and leave it out for your pet, allowing her to eat as much as she chooses when she chooses to. This method works best with dry foods since they do not spoil as quickly as wet foods. One of the obvious advantages of free choice feeding is that you do not have to worry about making it home in time for meals, a challenge for people with very busy schedules or who are confined to the vagaries of commuter traffic. Also, if pets were given the option, it seems apparent that they would choose to have food available whenever they wanted it. It could also serve multiple pets’ needs since they would be able to eat from the same bowl throughout the day.
Of course, there are disadvantages. One being that in multiple pet homes, one pet might hoard and bully over the bowl, not allowing the others to have a turn. There is also the risk of the animal becoming overweight from eating too much. Some breeds of cats and dogs are particularly known for eating well beyond the feeling of fullness.
“Only when feeding puppies,” says Melissa Carreker, DVM, owner of Leland Veterinary Clinic in Mableton, Ga. Puppies should eat four times a day.
And speaking of feeding puppies, Wendy Winquist, a certified trainer and dog behavior specialists in Austell, Ga., suggests you start out feeding them by hand. “That way,” she says, “the dog identifies you as the food provider.”
Winquist, who is an active member of the International Association of Canine Professionals (IACP) and owner of Pups in Progress dog training, says that feeding a puppy by hand is also a bonding mechanism. “It’s intimate, and it lets you and the puppy get to know each other better.” It also helps prevent future development of problems such as food possessiveness and aggression.
The general recommendation for adults of all breeds is that they be fed twice a day. “Of course, as dogs get older,” Carreker says, “they may make the decision for us how many times they should be fed. Some dogs don’t want to eat twice a day.”