Homemade Diets For A Nursing Dog
Homemade diets are not recommended for lactating dogs by the ASPCA or most veterinarians because nursing mamas have very specific, high nutrient requirements, which AAFCO-tested growth-and-reproduction commercial foods are guaranteed to meet. While attractive to human sensibilities, homemade pet diets are very rarely balanced and typically do not meet nutritional needs, even for non-lactating animals. Lactation is too delicate a time to experiment with your pets health. If youre determined to feed your new mama home-cooked meals, consult your veterinarian or veterinary nutritionist to work out a personalized diet that will meet her very substantial needs, and those of her puppies.
Healthy Foods To Eat Right After Labor
Sushi rolls and champagne are calling, but its best to start here.
Youve spent hours practicing your breathing in Lamaze class, have weighed the pros and cons of delayed cord clamping, and have a three-page birth plan detailing your intent on skin to skin, forceps, and drugs.
But hello, have you thought about your first meal as a mom? Sure, motherhood demands that we often put our needs last, but hey, a girls gotta eat. And when that girl just powered through the marathon of her life, she should be eating like a damn queen.
As a dietitian who loves food, its no surprise that I spent my entire pregnancy thinking about what I wanted to eat as my first postpartum meal. I imagined myself sitting in bed, babe on the breast , scarfing down beef tartar, runny egg yolks, sushi, and a glass of Dom.
Well, it didnt quite go down like that. While I was starving from not eating solids for 20 hours, throwing up for two of them, and hemorrhaging post-birth, the thought of eating much of anything gave me the heaves.
But eventually, you have to eat because labor is exactly that really hard labor. For some women, its a sprint , and for others, its a multi-day marathon.
Either way, its brutally demanding and exhausting. Its estimated to burn up to 100 calories an hour ! What we eat after delivery can help us muster up the energy for weeks of sleepless nights ahead, caring for a newborn, physical recovery, and breastfeeding.
The Results From Feeding Our Diy Dog Food
Back to the story of Bug
After only a couple of weeks of feeding her a homemade diet, the hubby and I were blown away by how much her mental and physical health improved. And we wholeheartedly believe she was able to bounce back because of her new food.
She went from an ailing, exhausted, incontinent, tail-down dog to a happy, energetic, curious, communicative pup. While she isnt miraculously walking again, her hip dysplasia also hasnt progressed or caused her any pain.
Weve learned to watch for signs that she needs to relieve herself as weve realized she knows when she has to go, she just cant get there without our help.
We feed both of our pugs the same food, with the hope that we can stave off any potential health problems for our older one.
When we travel, well bring their homemade food on the road in a cooler. On occasion, weve even ordered their dinner from a restaurant when we ran out of food .
If were camping, well usually just feed them whatever were cooking in camp they love corn on the cob, hobo packs , and the whole assortment of tri-tip, sausages, and ribs that weve usually got going on.
As you might imagine they lovecamping trips!
Homemade dog food gives us the flexibility to fine-tune their diet as needed. Im forever grateful for the extra time we were given with our beloved Bug as a result of the food we chose to feed her.
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What To Feed A Nursing Dog To Gain Weight
Puppy food is the best option to gain weight back for the nursing dog because of the extra nutrients it provides, having even more meals a day of that will help the dog gain weight back quickly. You can also give them treats to increase the fat and caloric intake the dog receives, as well as free feeding, as previously mentioned, because the availability of food to the dog allows for healthy overeating.
Feeding And Hydrating A Dog That Is Nursing Puppies
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Homemade Food For Nursing Dogs
You will need:
- 2 ½ lb or 6 legs of chicken.
- 1 cup brown rice
- 4-5 potatoes/sweetpotatoes/yams peeled and chopped
- 5-6 baby carrots peeled andchopped
- One 24 oz package of frozenpeas
- 1 cup whole grain pasta
- One can of diced tomatoes withjuice
- 2-3 quarts of chicken orvegetable broth. You can also use water.
- 2-4 tbsp good fats
- Place your chicken/lamb on abaking tray, in a preheated oven. Apply ghee or oil and roast for 30 minutes. Turnpieces over and roast for 10-15 minutes more. Cool. Remove the meat with forkand discard bones. Reserve liquid collected in the tray.
- Bring the water or stock toboil and add rice. Cover and cook until grains completely absorb the rice. Turnoff heat and allow the rice to rest.
- In a stock pot, boil water,tomatoes and chicken stock. Reduce heat and add carrots and potatoes.
- Add pasta and cook for 10minutes.
- Now add the rice and cookedchicken. Finally add frozen peas and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Add reserved liquid from tray. Serve thisstew over high quality dog food for nursing dogs.
- Drizzle some oil or ghee on topif needed.
Use one part stew to 4 parts dry dog foodformulated for nursing dogs. You can make a large batch and freeze orrefrigerate the excess.
A General Guideline For Preparing Homemade Dog Food
My DIY dog food recipe is more of a general guideline, rather than an exact meal plan that I follow each week. My dogs diet changes the same way ours does, depending on what we do and what we buy or grow.
However, we almost always stay with this basic formula:
- 50 percent cooked protein
- 25 percent cooked complex carbohydrates
- Fats and supplements
Protein is always meat and usually chicken, though weve also used turkey, pork, and beef. We feed any and all parts of the animals, but most commonly, we saute chicken breasts or chicken thighs in coconut oil and ground turmeric.
Coconut oil has a host of health benefits for dogs, such as improving the skin and coat, increasing energy, aiding digestion, reducing allergic reactions, promoting wound healing, preventing yeast and fungal infections, and supporting arthritis or ligament problems.
Turmeric has long been studied for its powerful medicinal properties, including its use as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.
We add it to the coconut oil since it is fat-soluble, and use it to support our pugs joint health.
Speaking of dark meat, we feed thighs and breasts interchangeably. While well remove the skin from poultry and trim off excessive fat from red meat, we dont worry about buying the leanest meat possible for our dogs.
A little fat is necessary for a well-rounded diet.
They tend to be the leftovers in our produce bin, so we never have to buy, say, a whole head of cauliflower just for the dogs.
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Also When Choosing Food There Are A Few Things To Keep In Mind:
- Should be high in calories and fat, but have fish oils to keep the fatty acids balanced
- Lots of nutrients high in vitamins, minerals, calcium, and protein
- Easy to digest
- If have supplements, make sure theyre vet-approved
- If you have never given your pet the ingredients that are in the new food, be sure to check with your vet to see if your dog is not allergic to it
What Is The Best Food To Feed A Nursing Dog
Dog pregnancies can be a challenging timefor pet owners and their dogs. However, it is also an exciting time and shouldnot be viewed as being something that is full of stress. You dog needs youright now during this important milestone in her life. The young litter is alsocounting on you for many things. Primary factor in taking care of a pregnant orlactating bitch is feeding her a healthy diet. Each dog pregnancy is unique andhence the nutritional needs are also different. Be diligent with the weeklycheckups and work with your vet closely to feed the best food to your dog aftershe gives birth. Let us discuss nutritional needs of a new mother and also thebest homemade food for nursing pets.
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Urinating In Your House
Your dog, who was so well-housebroken, may seem to forget her training in the days after she gives birth. Some mother dogs are so focused on their litters that they are reluctant to leave them for any reason, even to go outside to relieve themselves. You’ll probably notice this behavior the most in the first 24 hours or so after your dog has given birth.
After 24 hours have passed since your dog gave birth, you can take her outside to encourage her to relieve herself. Just don’t keep her away from her puppies for too long. She should gradually relax with this arrangement, realizing that you’ll quickly reunite her with her puppies again. If your dog continues to relieve herself in the house, or has trouble relieving herself, then it’s time for a trip to the vet to get her checked out.
My Dog Is Pregnant And Is Getting Ready To Deliver Her Puppies I Have Heard That Nursing Her Puppies Will Be Even More Energy
It is correct that during nursing , a dog needs the greatest amount of energy calories of any life stage. Optimal nutrition for a dog having puppies is essential to support:
The various stages of reproduction heat , pregnancy, lactation , and weaning provide unique stresses to the body. Each has specific nutritional concerns that should be addressed to maximize both mother and puppy health.
Dogs are pregnant for 63 days, plus or minus two days. The pregnancy is divided into trimesters, and a healthy, well-fed dog will gain about 15 to 20% beyond her weight at breeding.
“Meal feeding is the best way to control body condition and weight gain during pregnancy.”
Overfeeding can result in obesity at the end of pregnancy, increasing the risk for difficult or prolonged labor and extra stresses on the puppies. Meal feeding is the best way to control body condition and weight gain during pregnancy. A high-quality puppy formulation designed for high digestibility is generally recommended during the third trimester, and multiple small meals may be the best way to make sure the mother can eat enough calories and nutrients.
“Periodic assessments of her body condition provide opportunities to fine-tune feedings.”
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Dry Dog Food For A Nursing Dog
The basis of your nursing dogs diet should be high quality dry dog food. The food must have an AAFCO label that states for growth and reproduction or for all life stages. These foods are tested to ensure that they meet the requirements of pregnant and lactating dogs, as well as those of growing puppies. Puppy foods are also appropriate for nursing mothers. Free feed your mama dog, keeping fresh kibble available to her at all times. Dont worry about overfeeding a lactating dog.
Canned Dog Food For A Nursing Dog
Canned food may be fed in addition to high quality dry dog food. Too much, however, is implicated in diarrhea and dental problems. Most canned dog foods state the amount to feed per pound of body weight on the label. A good rule of thumb to nutritionally support nursing mothers while preventing digestive upset is to feed two to three times the amount recommended for your doggys non-pregnant, non-nursing body weight. Remember, canned food isnt necessary for a balanced diet, and its not a replacement for high quality kibble.
Start Socializing The Puppies
At this point, if the mother dog will allow it, you can get the puppies used to your presence. Socializing them at an early age can help ensure that they fit well into a household.
Watch for poor doers or runts of the litter , as they could have underlying health conditions affecting their ability to grow. If you notice that one of your puppies is smaller or has less energy than the others, consult your veterinarian.
Puppies should not be taken away from their mother and sent to their new homes too quickly, as they learn very important social rules and behavior from their mother and siblings. Puppies should not be separated from their mother if they are younger than 8 weeks old. Wait until they are 10 weeks old so they will have had the maximum benefit of social interaction with their mother and littermates.
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How Much To Feed A Nursing Dog
Nursing dogs need twice the quantity of food that they regularly eat. Sometimes, even 2.5 or 3 times more food than usual.
New nursing mothers need a large quantity of food to keep their puppies fed. Some trainers and vets even suggest that a nursing dog should have a bowl full of kibble accessible at all times . So ideally, you should let your dog eat as much as she wants. This is one time that you simply cannot put a limit to how much she eats and dont worry about overfeeding her.
However, what you must worry about is that while nursing dogs require large quantities of food, they have very little appetite. So getting them to eat more is a problem. An easy solution to this is to feed her food that is calorie dense.
For those who feed their dogs homemade, fresh food the number one rule is to never leave any of it out. Contrary to the kibble, that can be left out all day long for the dog to keep eating, home cooked food needs to be given frequently and fresh. Ideally, a pregnant dog will eat 1/5th of her body weight every week.
How To Make Sure That Your Dog Is Okay After Giving Birth
This article was co-authored by Kateryna Zabashta. Kateryna Zabashta is a Dog Breeder and the Owner of Emmas Frenchies in the San Francisco Bay Area. With over five years of experience, Kateryna specializes in dog nutrition, general care, and breeding French Bulldogs.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article received 23 testimonials and 86% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 628,673 times.
The best way to make sure that your dog is okay after giving birth is to learn more about what typical canine whelping is like. Remember, dogs have been giving birth for thousands of years. It is a natural process, but there are things you can do to help. A vet check up is strongly advised after whelping so that you can be sure she has birthed all the puppies.
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When Labor Is Imminent
An expectant mother dog will usually stop eating when labor is imminent. Her first meal after giving birth will be the placentas and membranes from around her pups. This may cause mama to have some loose stools, but she isnt sick. She needs the nutritional boost provided by this recycling project, and it helps get milk production off to a good start.
What Food Should I Feed My Dog After Giving Birth
To help your nursing dog get enough nutrition, you can try several tactics: Feed a nutrient-dense diet such as puppy food. Without increasing the amount of food offered at a meal, increase the number of meals throughout the day. Free-choice feed her, offering unlimited access to dry food throughout the day.
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