One good way of treating your dog right is by keeping close attention to his food intake. Aside from keeping him well-fed, his diet and nourishment is also a very important factor you should consider. However, how much food should a dog eat? This is the question that concerns most dog owners.
In this article, we’re going to discuss how much food to feed a dog, how often should dogs be fed, and what kind of foods dogs should eat. Through these questions, you will surely be guided on how to provide the right diet to your dog.
How Much Food Should You Feed Your Dog?
In the projected pet population made by the American Pet Products Association in 2018-2019, an estimate of 50 million dogs were found to be overweight. This means that a huge number of dogs are at a high risk of health problems. Compared to dogs who have a normal weight, overweight dogs have a lesser life expectancy. Therefore, it all boils down to the question: “what is then the leading factor of dogs’ obesity?”
A recent study made by the University of Liverpool reveals that the feeding habits of most dog owners have a crucial contribution to the obesity of their pets. Dog owners love to pamper their dogs with big chunks of food, and while doing this, they may not realize that their dog is starting to become obese. The sad thing is that it can have a critical impact on their health.
The most common problems suffered by overweight dogs include:
- Difficulty in breathing
- Joint diseases
- Oral diseases
In order to help you manage the weight of your dog and give you the right idea about how much food to feed a dog, here are some tips you want to consider:
1. Visit your nearest veterinary clinic
Start by asking your local vet about the ideal body weight of your dog (since it varies depending on the dog breed). Once the dog’s ideal weight is determined, the vet could then advise you of the feeding amount as it can be adjusted as your dog ages.
2. Use the Portion Control method
For commercial dog food, you can follow the serving size printed on the pack that fits your dog’s ideal weight. Some instances, however, would suggest a lesser portion of this serving since dog food packs are likely to suggest bigger food serving to boost bigger sales. To be certain, you can ask your vet on the ideal amount of serving to be given.
3. Skip the table food and other extras
Although you love sharing your food with your dog, just be reminded that not all human foods are healthy and even safe for pets. Some can seriously be fatal to dogs without you knowing it. Also, you can skip those extra dog treats if they are not nutritious at all.
How Often Should You Feed Your Dog?
One good way of monitoring your dog’s feeding time is by using the feeding time method. This is done by giving your dog a certain time amount, say 20-30 minutes, to finish his food. Once the time is over, throw out whatever’s left on the bowl.
For most dogs, however, at least feed them twice each day – once in the morning and once also in the evening. It’s ideal to feed them at the same time. This frequency is true for adult dogs.
For puppies, however, they need to eat more frequently so their growth is not hampered. It’s also best to determine the quality of food best for these puppies. To understand more about puppy foods, you can check out our list of the best puppy foods.
What Kind of Food Should You Feed Your Dog?
Aside from the amount and frequency of feeding, another crucial consideration in ensuring the well-being of your dog is the kind of food you feed to them.
“Is it okay to feed your dog a homemade dog food”? “If yes, how much homemade dog food to feed”? “Is canned food advisable also”? “If yes, how much canned food to feed a dog per day”?
These are only a few of those concerns that most dog owners have. Fortunately, the following ideas will help you decide which food is right for your dog:
1. Read the label
The ingredients printed on the dog’s food pack will give you a head start as to whether that dog food can suit your dog’s needed nourishment. You can’t generalize all dog food as containing the same ingredients, so you better read the label carefully.
2. Research on the brand
Be mindful when buying food for your dog as there could be brands out there in the market that might not have a decent reputation. You should be cautious of the brand you’re using. One way of doing that is to seek reviews from customers who have already tried using the product brand.
3. Know your dog well
The breed and activity level of your dog will help you better understand the right food for them. For a dog who is active and full of activities, foods that are high in protein and calories, often wet dog foods, are what they need best to sustain their energy level. For the idle ones, regular dog food is enough.
Additionally, you want to make sure to feed your dog in a nice feeding bowl to further enhance his eating experience.
By considering the tips above, you’re not only keeping your dog healthy, but you’re also keeping him happy at the same time. After all, it is your responsibility as a dog owner to always keep your furry friend in good shape at all times.