Tips For Making Your Dogs Food At Home:
- If youre not ready to make the leap to cooking all of your dogs food, try just adding some real, whole foods to their kibble. You can start with simply stirring in a scrambled egg, mixing in some chopped apples or carrots, or adding a small amount of the homemade dog food in with their normal kibble.
- You should be able to serve this homemade dog food to your dog either hot or cold. Ive found that dogs love this dog food so much, that they are not picky about how its served.
- Its not usually a good idea to abruptly change your dogs food. Start transitioning them to homemade food by mixing some of this in with their regular food or kibble for a few days until they are used to the new food. Your dogs belly will thank you. And again, remember to always discuss with your vet before feeding your pet something new.
- To give your dog a variety of different nutrients, use different meats, fruits, and vegetables to make your dogs food. However, if your dog has a sensitive stomach, it might be best to stick to one combination that you know works.
Nutrient Adjustments Are Needed For Senior Dogs
While some dogs may not need a change in the nutrient composition of their diet as they age, there are nutritional adjustments that may specifically benefit senior dogs, depending on a number of factors . Here are some of the most common:
Lower-calorie foods are often the way to go, because senior dogs tend to be less active than their younger counterparts. In fact, dogs’ activity levels tend to drop by as much as one-third to one-half as they age that means they do not need to take in as many calories. Portion control is key! That said, for those senior dogs who are losing muscle mass, a vet might recommend a diet higher in protein and calories.Finally, always consult your vet, who can help you determine what is right for your dog and make adjustments accordingly.
Check out this study for more reading on senior dog nutrition. Remember, there is currently no senior, geriatric, or mature dog food nutrient profile recognized by the Association of American Feed Control Officials . That means there is no guarantee that senior food will contain a certain amount of protein, fiber, or any of the nutrients mentioned here.
Choosing The Right Food For Your Adult Dog
To help you choose the best food for your adult dog, take into account the following factors:
1. Your dog’s lifestage – choose a food made specifically for adult dogs.
Because adult dogs don’t need the same nutrients to help them grow as puppies, their diet contains fewer calories to help them maintain a healthy weight during adulthood.
2. Your dog’s size – choose food matching your dog’s size .
Size also plays a big role in meeting a dog’s nutritional needs. For example, smaller dogs have a higher metabolism, which means they need more calories in their diet than larger dogs. Since large, medium and small dogs have different nutritional requirements, choosing a dog food that matches your dog’s size will be the best way to keep your pooch healthy.
Large adult dog food
3. Your dog’s breed – different breeds have unique needs.
If your dog is a pedigree breed, or a cross-breed that strongly resembles a purebred dog, there are breed-specific diets available. Certain Superior Nutrition brands like Royal Canin, offer formulas designed to meet the nutritional needs of specific dog breeds. To learn more about these special diets, visit our article ‘The benefits of breed-specific dog food’.
4. Health requirements.
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Adult Dog Feeding Schedule
Most people choose to feed their adult dogs two meals a day one in the morning and one in the afternoon or evening.
Other people will free feed their dogs. This involves leaving your dogs food ration down at all times, so he can eat as and when he chooses.
Some problems with free feeding include: dogs eating out of boredom, dogs eating excessively and becoming overweight, not noticing loss of appetite, and it being a less sanitary option.
Remember, the food amounts we recommended above count for your dogs entire daily allowance.
So, you will need to split this food up into separate mealtimes.
Best Senior Dog Food: Choosing The Best Food For Older Dogs
Senior dog food can make even the grayest-muzzled canine pal happy. Just ask Pudge, a cranky ol black Labrador from Pasadena, California. The 12-year-old dogs mom, Susanne Jeter, noticed changes in Pudge as he got olderhe took longer to rise from his bed, he wasnt as playful as he once was and he started putting on some extra weight.
We all get oldeven our dogs, Jeter says. Ive had Pudger since he was a puppy, and at 9, 10 years old, he really started showing his age. I could tell that his joints were hurting.
Following the advice of her veterinarian, Jeter switched Pudges diet to one specially formulated for senior, overweight dogs with creaky joints. She also added some fish oil to provide supplemental omega-3 fatty acids.
Hes now aging gracefully, she says with a laugh. Hes still grumpy sometimes when its cold and rainy outside, but when the sun comes out, hell grab his ball and ask to play a game of fetch again. As his doggy mom, it makes me happy to know hes not so uncomfortable anymore!
With just a few dietary changes, Pudges demeanorand his quality of lifeimproved. If youre wondering what is the best thing to feed an old dog, read on to learn everything youve ever wanted to know about food for older dogs.
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How Much Wet Food To Feed A Dog
As we mentioned earlier, the amount of wet food that you feed your dog will depend on if you are pairing the food with kibble, or only feeding them wet food.
For example, the Pedigree Chopped Ground Dinner food suggests giving of a can per 10 lbs that your dog weighs.
So, you could use the following guide:
- 10 lb dog: feed of a can daily
- 20 lb dog: feed 1 cans daily
- 30 lb dog: feed 2 cans daily
- 40 lb dog: feed 2 cans daily
- 50 lb dog: feed 3 cans daily.
Of course, this daily ration will be split into your dogs meal times!
How To Convert The Resulting Calories To A Serving Size
After you have entered your dogs ideal weight, their activity level, and hit Calculate above, you are presented with the daily energy requirement in the form of total kilocalories your dog needs per day.
But you dont just feed your dog all that at once, right? You need to break/divide the total down into the amount of feeding sessions in a day. What to do?
The amount of calories in a particular amount of dog food is called its metabolizable energy or ME. To spot it, look for one of the following on your dogs food label:
- Calories per cup
- Calories per kilogram
It should look something like this:
From there, you simply take the total DER kcal from the calculated results above and decide how many cups to give your dog per serving.
Heres a very basic made up example: Using the image above . If your dog required 696 kcal per day, youd simply feed them 2 cups of food a day.
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How Health Can Affect Your Dogs Appetite
There are a lot of different health problems which can have loss of appetite as a symptom.
You can find out all about these on this page. Older Dog Not Eating?
Because it can be difficult to tell the difference between a minor problem and a serious one, your first step towards ruling out disease/illness should be a thorough veterinary check up.
Basic tests often start with blood tests plus urine and fecal tests, and a dental examination.
These are usually affordable and can diagnose urinary tract problems, some organ-related diseases, thyroid problems and dental issues. Major ailments such as these should be treated directly, which in turn should increase your dogs appetite.
When the results are ambiguous or indicate that there may be a health issue, abdominal and chest X-rays or ultrasound is a logical next step.
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This also applies if the first tests dont find anything definitive, but your old dog continues to refuse to eat.
If your veterinarian doesnt find any serious health problems, thats great news for everyone, but doesnt necessarily mean that your pet is going to start eating normally again just because the vet says hes doing well
There are a host of minor issues that can make your old dog feel like he doesnt want to eat.
These can include:
- One of the symptoms of Old Dog Syndrome
- Medication side-effects
Did You Make This Recipe
Tag on Instagram and hashtag it #thismessisours
Home Made Dog Food recipe for the Holidays
This 100% human grade home made dog food recipe utilizes some of the best fall produce for your dog like sweet potatoes, cranberries, rosemary, and sage. Its perfect for every day feedings and does double duty as a really delicious holiday meal for your dog!
Pumpkin and Yogurt Bowl for Dogs Recipe
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day for all of us, even our dogs! Get your dogs day off to a great start with a healthy dose of protein, vitamins, and minerals by feeding him/her a delicious Pumpkin and Yogurt Bowl for Dogs. These yogurt bowls are filled with good for your dog ingredients like fat free Greek yogurt, 100% pure pumpkin puree, plant based vitamin and mineral powder, and my Homemade Dog Food Seasoning which is a blend of 5 herbs that have extraordinary health benefits for your dog!
Homemade Dog Food Seasoning Blend recipe
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How Much Should Adult Dogs Eat
Dont let your dog trick you into more mealtimes with adorable puppy dog eyes. Most dogs only require two meals a day, but if you catch your dog begging, an occasional healthy treat can help.
The trick is to make sure youre not feeding your dog more than is recommended. Food labels can be misleading or confusing. Generic feeding charts may over-calculate how much to feed a dog, or use outdated information.
To determine how much food to feed your dog, you should start by knowing your dogs estimated adult weight. Most large breed dogs will weigh between 50 to 150 pounds, while small breeds weigh under 20 pounds. Knowing the weight of your dogs same-sex parent can also be an excellent guide.
From there, you can use the estimated weight to determine how many calories dogs need per day.
Calories In Vs Calories Out
Its a term we are all familiar with – calories in must equal calories out. While its not exactly an all-encompassing term, it does make the point that we should be cautious of feeding our pets more calories than they are capable of using.
As our pets age, its common for them to slow down. Weight and activity levels should be monitored to help you identify the need for a change in diet, feeding guidelines, or routine.
While not every senior dog will slow down the same way, you should be prepared for subtle changes, and be able to respond accordingly.
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Dogs With Health Conditions May Need Special Diets
There are many senior dog foods on the market. These may be suitable for healthy dogs that are just getting older – but they are not designed for dogs with health problems.
If your dog has a health condition, you may need to adjust his diet to provide the nutrients he needs. You should always ask a vet for advice, but here are some common examples:
On a related note, make sure you take into account your dog’s teeth when choosing a food. Hard kibble is uncomfortable to eat for a dog with poor or missing teeth.
How Active Should Your Senior Dog Be
To answer this, you need to understand your dogs current physical and mental state. Just like people, your dogs routine needs to be adjusted according to what they are currently capable of.
A lazy, old dog cant just jump into an advanced physical routine without overexerting itself. Adjustments need to be made slowly. Think baby steps. The less active your pet currently is, the slower you will need to introduce new activities.
In this article, What Does My Dog Need, we clarified different classifications of activity level in dogs:
- Low Activity – 30 minutes of physical activity + casual playtime
- Moderate Activity – 30 minutes-1 hour of physical activity + regular playtime
- High Activity – 1+ hours of physical activity + active playtime
While these categories still stand true for senior pets, the types of physical activity and playtime may change.
A 30 minute run for an active dog, might be a 30-minute walk for a senior. A high-energy game of fetch in the backyard might be a slow game of hide and seek instead.
If you have a senior pet that is still quite spry, thats great. Maintaining physical activity should be a breeze, but make sure you monitor your pet in the hours or days after high-energy playtime.
For most senior dogs, dividing playtime into shorter segments and spreading them throughout the day is a great way to maintain their activity level without taxing their bodies too much.
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Making Homemade Dog Food
Are you an owner who has the time and resources available for making homemade dog food?
Weve got just the tool for you!
Using the meal calculator below is an incredible time saver and a cooking partner of sorts. Start by selecting the food source, entering the amount of ounces, and leave the rest to our app! To add more, simply hit the Add Another button, and add to the creation of your meal.
Also: We carry your dogs Daily Energy Requirement from the first calculator above, so you can always easily reference it as you are creating your pets meal.
How Much Food Should I Feed My Dog
And its an especially important question, too.
Thats because research confirms
Overweight dogs dont live as long as normal weight dogs.
According to a recent university study, overweight dogs suffer from a higher incidence of life-shortening illnesses. These diseases include
So, how much should you feed your dog to ensure his health?
Well, dont just blindly follow the directions on a dog food package. Thats because manufacturers like to hedge by suggesting an overly broad range of serving sizes.
For example, a bag of kibble might readfor dogs from 5 to 15 pounds feed 1/2 to 1-1/2 cups a day.
Wow. Thats a monstrously wide range a 200% variation! Its simply not precise enough.
If you follow that advice youll be guessing. You could be significantly overfeeding or underfeeding your dog.
Misjudging a serving size by even a small amountand then feeding that same amount day-in and day-out multiplies the error. And it could have a devastating effect on your dogs health.
Dont Guess Follow These Three Easy Steps
When deciding how much to feed your dog never guess. Be scientific. Always calculate and measure.
Use our Dog Food Calculator and follow these three simple steps
- Step 1 Enter your dogs ideal weight
- Step 2 Select your dogs life stage and activity level
- Step 3 Insert your dog foods calories per serving
Then, use a measuring cup or a scale and feed the calculated amount.
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Dog Feeding Chart: How Much Should I Feed My Dog
Determining how much food you should feed your dog isnt always straightforward.
Bringing a dog home for the first time, getting another dog or changes with your dogs weight, age or health can all warrant a closer look at how much food youre feeding at mealtimes.
Although complete and balanced dog food packages have feeding recommendations on the label, every dog is unique so you may still need to adjust how much and how often to feed your dog.
Adult Dry Dog Food Feeding Charts
The IAMS Proactive Health dry dog food suggests that you should feed your dog the following:
- For 5 lb dogs: ½ to ¾ a cup daily
- 10 lb dogs: ¾ to 1 cup daily
- 20 lb dogs: 1 ¼ to 1 ½ cups daily
- 30 lb dogs: 1 to 2 cups daily
- 40 lb dogs: 2 to 2 cups daily
- 50 lb dogs: 2 ½ to 2 ¾ cups daily.
This is based on each cup weighing 104 grams.
Alternatively, the Diamond Naturals Real Meat Recipe suggests the following.
- For 5 lb dogs: ½ a cup daily
- 10 lb dogs: 1 cup daily
- 20 lb dogs: 1 ½ cups daily
- 30 lb dogs: 2 cups daily
- 40 lb dogs: 2 ½ cups daily
- 60 lb dogs: 3 ¼ cups daily
- 80 lb dogs: 4 cups daily
- 100 lb dogs: 4 cups daily.
For dogs heavier than 100 lbs, they suggest adding ½ cup for every extra 10 lbs.
Differences in how much dry food to feed a dog depend upon things like the ingredients they contain, and the shape of the kibble.
A cup of large kibble pieces has more air spaces in it than a cup of small kibble pieces, so it can also weigh significantly less.
So always check the specific feeding instructions for your chosen brand.
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