Mix Wet Food With Dry Kibble
If your dog is an overeater, mix wet dog food with their dry kibble. This will increase the moisture content of the food and makes the dog feel full quicker.
You can also wet the dry kibble before feeding which will make them bigger and make your dog feel full quicker.
There are also specially formulated diets that are high in fiber, designed to help dogs lose weight.
Consider Wet Food Diet
Wet food is also quite a good option for fussy eaters. Feeding your fussy dog wet food or mixing it with their dry kibble can get their appetite going.
While some dogs are able to graze throughout the day without issues, it is still healthier for your dog to get used to a feeding routine. This is especially useful if you decide to get another canine addition to the family in the future.
How Much Should My Dog Eat Based On His Age Or Health Condition
As you can guess, puppies eat more, and there are special diets for puppies with higher minerals and proteins for growth. An adult dog needs to eat less than a puppy to prevent them from getting fat. Senior dogs are elderly and start to have weaker jaws, hence they may prefer softer food and started to eat less as their metabolism decreases.
If your dog suffers from health conditions, you may also take precautions on his food. You may have to consult a veterinarian about the type of food, amount, and schedule for your dog. There are a few common health conditions, such as urinary stones, kidney diseases, weight issues, or heart and liver problems that trouble dogs.
Diamond Naturals Dry Kibble
Diamond Naturals Extreme Athlete is one of 13 kibble recipes included in our review of the Diamond Naturals product line.
- First 5 ingredients: Chicken meal, chicken, ground white rice, chicken fat, cracked pearled barley
- Type: Grain-inclusive
- Other recipes: Large breed, small breed, puppy, senior, lamb, beef and more
- Price: $
- See all 13 available recipes
This Diamond Naturals formula derives most of its animal protein from chicken meal and fresh chicken. Our dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 36% protein, 28% fat and 29% estimated carbs which yields a fat-to-protein ratio of about 78%.
Diamond Naturals was recently selected as one of our most affordable dog foods. Highly recommended.
Sample buyer reviewI own competitive English setter females. Im always looking for the best value per pound in what I feed my dogs. Over the past 25 years Ive tried many different foods and found that 30/20 or higher works best based upon the condition, looks, stamina, palatability and stool size, consistency and frequency. Ive fed this food before and found it is very close to, if not better than the Sport/Performance food it competes with!
This Nulo Freestyle recipe derives the bulk of its meat protein from turkey, as well as turkey and salmon meals. Our dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 37% protein, 20% fat and 35% estimated carbs which produces a fat-to-protein ratio of about 55%.
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How Much Food Does My Dog Need Based On Their Body Weight
The amount of dog food a dog needs is not directly proportional to your dogs weight.
This means that if you feed your 20-pound dog 1 cup of dog food, 2 cups of the same feed will usually be too much for your 40-pound dog. This is because smaller dogs often have:
- A higher metabolic rate
- A bigger surface area to volume ratio that would result in more body heat loss
Therefore it should not come as a surprise that small dogs have a higher energy requirement per pound of body weight than large dogs.
Wet or dry food products usually have feeding guides printed on their packaging. These can provide you with a fairly good idea on the amount of food you should feed your dog per day, however, these estimates still have a margin of error of around 30%.
While your dogs weight can give you a fairly good idea on the right amount of food to feed your dog, every dog is an individual and the metabolism of one dog varies from that of the next one.
This is where using body condition scoring and muscle condition scoring methods is important.
These methods allow you to calibrate how much food you should feed your dog. You can also use a feeding calculator such as this one which is verified by both veterinarians and animal nutritionists.
Victor Classic Dry Dog Food
Victor Hi-Pro Plus is one of 4 kibble recipes included in our review of the Victor Classic product line.
- First 5 ingredients: Beef meal, grain sorghum, chicken fat, pork meal, chicken meal
- Type: Grain-inclusive
- Other recipes: Chicken, puppy, active sporting dog formula and more
- Price: $
Victor Hi-Pro Plus derives the bulk of its meat protein from beef meal. Our dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 33% protein, 22% fat and 37% estimated carbs which creates a fat-to-protein ratio of about 67%.
An affordable, all life stages kibble recently added to our budget-friendly dog foods list. Highly recommended.
Sample buyer reviewI have 5 active dogs of all different ages. Its been a struggle to find a quality, decently priced food that kept a good weight on all of them and didnt mess with their allergies. Theyve been on this food since April and its been amazing! No bad reactions when switching to Victor, no allergies, and they are all a good weight. Highly recommend.
Annamaet Ultra is one of 7 kibble recipes included in our review of the Annamaet product line.
- First 5 ingredients: Chicken meal, brown rice, chicken fat, whole dry eggs, herring meal
- Type: Grain-inclusive
- Other recipes: Puppies, salmon, small breed, senior, weight loss and more
- Price: $$
Especially popular with sporting dog professionals. Enthusiastically recommended.
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Supplements To Add To Homemade Dog Food
Most of the homemade dog foods dont fulfill the nutritionalrequirements of your canine. This problem has nothing to do with the selectionor quality of ingredients that you use in these recipes. Instead, its down tothe nutritional needs of dogs that cannot be reached without adding too manycalories. Therefore, you have to add supplements to these homemade diets tomake them balanced.
Unfortunately, it can be much harder than it seems to find a suitable dog supplement for homemade dog food. An ideal supplement that could ensure a balanced diet must have the following three characteristics.
- Should have useful Vitamins and Minerals
- Should have Digestive Enzymes
- Must provide Skin, Coat, and Joint Support
Some of the supplements that you can safely add in yourhomemade dog foods are discussed below.
Want to know how to tell if a dog is healthy? Check out our post How to Tell If Your Dog is Healthy.
Dog Eating Habits And Behaviors
Will My Dog Be Bored Eating the Same Food All the Time?
No. Boredom with food is a human trait. Dogs are creatures of habit and usually are happy with just one food. Dogs generally eat to meet their energy or nutritional needs. They have very short digestive systems, and if their diet is abruptly or constantly changed, digestive disturbances can occur. Also, constant changes can make your dog a finicky eater.
Is It OK to Moisten Dry Food?
Adding water will not change the nutritional value of a dry pet food. However, once moisture is added, make sure your dog eats it relatively soon and also discard any uneaten portion to avoid spoilage. Feeding dry food is usually encouraged because of the benefit to your dogs dental health.
Will It Hurt My Dog If They Eat My Cats Food?
Cats and dogs have different nutritional requirements and should not eat each others food. For example, cats require a much higher level of taurine in their diet. An occasional venture into each others bowls will not be harmful, but is not recommended on a regular basis.
Can I Supplement Your Dog Foods with Vitamins, Minerals,Oils, etc.?
Our foods are nutritionally complete and balanced. Adding vitamins, minerals or oils can offset the balance the food provides. One of the benefits of feeding a high quality product is that it has been carefully balanced in proper ratios to provide optimal nutrition nothing needs to be added.
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Are There Any Other Things To Consider
We have learned that bad nutritional practices can harm your dog. However, nutrition can also be of help to dogs suffering from a number of pre-existing conditions.
Several companies nowadays formulate a number of veterinary formulated diets that aim to help with the treatment of a number of health conditions like:
- neurological diseases.
These diets can be bought for veterinary clinics or by obtaining a veterinary prescription. This is because these diets would otherwise be nutritionally inadequate for healthy dogs.
Assess Your Pets Health
Before changing anything, you need to take stock of your dogs weight and overall health. Its wise to get a vets opinion but the basics can be done at home. Weigh your dog or cat and, if he has a short coat, take a couple of photos to show his overall physique. Your goal is to keep your dog at a healthy weight or ideal weight and avoid obesity and having to manage overweight dogs in your household.
Feel around his ribs, hips, and backbone and check if there is meat over them or if your dog is boney. Their bones may have disappeared under a layer of fat. Each breed has different characteristics but the general rule is that you should be able to feel your dogs bones through the skin and muscle. Your pet should also have a waist without too much tummy.
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Dogs With Medical Conditions
There are certain conditions that can be treated or managed by feeding your dog a prescription diet, including diseases such as kidney disease or diabetes. Some dogs can also develop allergies or intolerances to certain ingredients in their food, with symptoms such as itchy skin or diarrhoea. To help reduce your dogs symptoms, there may be certain types of food that youll need to avoid. Always speak to your vet if youre not sure what your dog should be eating, and always follow your vets advice. They may recommend a diet trial to help with your dogs diagnosis and management.
Take Lifestage And Activity Levels Into Account
If you consider dog food measurements calculated based on weight alone, you’ll have too much of a margin for error. Much like a human’s, a canine’s body goes through a series of changes with age that call for different nutrient levels. Puppies need more protein, calcium, and phosphorus to build strong bones and lean muscles, while adult dogs need much fewer calories per weight unit. Senior canines’ slower metabolism calls for a less calorie-dense diet with increased protein.
Energetic dogs which can never sit still need more energy to remain active, while couch potatoes need fewer calories to support their idle lifestyle. That’s why our calculator includes an extra filter to let you choose the activity level of your canine to calculate the right daily serving size.
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How Much To Feed Your Dog
According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, in 2017 about 56 percent of dogs in the United States were overweight or obese. To put this into perspective, thats about 50.2 million dogs that are too heavy and at risk for health problems.
While we cant say that overfeeding based on confusion regarding how much food to feed dogs is the entire reason that dogs suffer from weight issues, its certainly a factor.
Learning the mathematics behind how much your dog should be eating is a powerful tool for helping your dog stay happy, healthy and trim.
But determining the right amount of food isnt as easy as placing a dog bowl in front of him and letting him eat until hes full. Many dogs will eat what you put out, no matter what. Its up to you to figure out whats a healthy amount. So, how can you determine how much to feed a dog?
Canine Complete By Wholistic Pet Organics
This all-in-one vitamin mix is made with natural food ingredients. It covers all the necessary bases for a dogs nutritional requirements, ranging from vitamins and minerals to digestive microflora. Similarly, it supports the health and longevity of your pup with an abundant supply of antioxidants. This supplement is completely safe for your dog as it is regulated by NASC.
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Why Tracking Your Dog’s Calories Matters
Why is measuring your pets food and knowing how many calories they’re eating every day so important? Because the pet obesity rate in the U.S. has truly ballooned to epidemic proportions.
Obesity in pets contributes to other health issues such as osteoarthritis in dogs or potentially diabetes in cats. And while overfeeding a pet their regular food isnt the only contributing factor, it certainly is a big one and its one thats typically easy to change.
There are HUGE advantages to measuring your pets food. For one thing, your pet will be much healthier. Animals at ideal body weight are easier for your veterinarian to examine and it also allows more accurate bloodwork results. Additionally, since medications are based on weight, you not only have to administer less medication but you also save money.
While some medications are based on your pets exact weight because of how they are distributed throughout the body, others are based on your pets ideal body weight. If your pet is overweight or obese, your pets veterinarian has to make assumptions as to what their ideal weight is. Therefore they may be safe, be using a slightly higher weight than the true ideal of your pet. This can make a big difference in the cost of medications.
How Often Should I Feed My Puppy
Feed your puppy frequently in the beginning at least 3 to 4 times per day and more often if they’re very young. At 5 to 6 months, you can slowly transition to 2 to 3 meals per day by gradually reducing the mid-day meal and slightly increasing breakfast and dinner. Keep in mind that at around 6 months, or at the time of spay/neuter, their growth process slows down, so watch your companions waistline and reduce the amount of food if necessary. Overfeeding your puppy can set them up for health problems such as joint issues and obesity. Puppies should be trim and fit, not chubby and round.
Puppy Feeding Chart
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Pregnant And Lactating Dogs
These two life stages are unique to female dogs. Dog pregnancy spans over a period of 9 weeks and is divided into three trimesters.
In order for a female dog to conceive it is important that she is at optimal body condition. The first two trimesters of the pregnancy are not very energy-demanding as during this time the developing embryos grow at a slow rate.
However, the third trimester sees a marked increase in embryonic growth, and the mothers nutritional requirement rise accordingly. It is normal to see a 15% to 20% weight gain throughout the pregnancy. It is important to maintain the mothers optimal body condition.
Excessive weight loss might lead to small litter sizes, weak pups, and still-birth. Excessive weight gain can cause difficulty giving birth and greatly reduce the puppies chances of survival after birth.
The lactation phase has an even greater energy requirement than pregnancy particularly between the third and fifth weeks after whelping. During this time a nursing mothers energy requirements might increase twofold to fourfold than that of a non-pregnant and non-nursing female. It is suggested that during these weeks dog food should constantly be available so she can eat whenever she needs to.
How Do Age Lifestyle And Health Factor Into The Mix
Lets start with age. Growing dogs need more food than adult dogs. And it takes dogs about two years to be considered full-grown, although toy breeds may be done growing by six to nine months, Romine says.
Older dogs, on the other hand, may require 20 percent fewer calories to maintain their ideal weight due to metabolic changes. So they may benefit from eating a food thats lower in fat and calories. Sometimes, though, dogs lose weight as they transition from old to very old. Thats often because their appetite decreases, maybe due to a diminished sense of smell or taste or difficulty chewing or swallowing. Such dogs may benefit from a higher-fat diet thats more palatable and includes more calories.
Lifestyleor how active a dog is on a regular basiscan vary greatly from dog to dog. Compare the energy level of a border collie, who wants to stay busy, with a canine couch potato who is the same age and weight. The border collie absolutely needs more calories than his inactive friend. Other dogs, like hunting dogs, dont live the same lifestyle all year long, Romine says. A dog who is out in the fields all day hunting with his owner will burn 25 to 35 percent more calories than during the days of the year when hes just a family pet. Calculate his feeding amounts accordingly.
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