How to choose dog food?
1. Decide what kind of food you need – basic (everyday) or therapeutic.
If your dog does not have health problems, a regular complete feed is suitable. Clinical nutrition must be acquired in case of diseases, for example, for animals with arthritis, with digestive problems and a tendency to allergies.
When choosing a food, many factors are important – nutritional value, taste, shape and texture of croquet, cost, etc. What suits your friend’s dog will not necessarily suit your pet. If the dog does not like the food purchased, do not force him to eat. Get small packages of different feeds so that the pet chooses what he likes. High-quality feeds contain all the necessary vegetables that the dog will not eat fresh, but they are useful for her body.
2. The age of the pet.
At different stages of life, the dog requires a different type of feeding. Among the feeds of premium and super-premium class stand out entire series for all ages. From two weeks from birth, Starter feeds are offered, from 2 to 10 months – Junior, from 1 year to 8 years – Adult, from 6-8 years and more – Senior. It is this division that allows satisfying all the needs of the animal at different stages of its life.
3. The size of the dog.
For owners of medium-sized dogs, this criterion is not fundamental, but for miniature and large animals it is better to purchase food specially created taking into account their characteristics.
If you choose food with large granules, it may be too tough for a small dog. A dog, for example, needs more calcium than a cocker spaniel of the same age, which is why these foods for dogs of different sizes are the best choice for caring owners.
4. A way of life.
When choosing food you can not ignore the lifestyle of your pet. If the animal is official or constantly walks, plays, he needs food for active dogs. Typically, such a product is labeled “Active” or “Energy” on the package. The food will provide additional energy, support the body, weakened after illness, stress and help the bitches recover after feeding.
If the pet sleeps most of the time on the bed or in the sunbed, with a sleepy gaze escorting you to work, gets out for short walks, you can safely purchase dog food with a normal level of activity. Usually they have the signature “Normal” or “Standart”. For dogs that have lost their former shape and are prone to obesity, “Light” food is suitable.
5. Feed class.
Dry feeds are divided into classes. The most popular and advertised are feed of economy class. However, it is better to pay attention to the premium and super-premium class. They differ not only in price, but also in the quality of the ingredients that make up the composition. Premium and super-premium feeds contain high-quality protein and a minimum of grain (some feeds do not have them at all), as well as preservatives that do not harm. As a rule, economy-class feed is made from the remains of other feed or offal, low-quality grain, and soy.
That is why it is better to immediately feed your pet with high-quality food in order to avoid future health problems. By the way, good feeds have a higher nutritional value, and therefore even a small portion will completely satisfy the daily need for nutrients.
How to feed a dog?
This question always worries a happy dog owner . Each of us wants to pamper our tailed friend, but at the same time maintain his health and vitality. And we all know that a lot depends on what and how our pet eats. And with the modern rhythm of life, it becomes important that feeding a dog does not require a lot of trouble. Let’s try to figure out what key points to consider when compiling a dog menu.
General Dog Nutrition
There are several general rules for feeding a dog:
- The pet should be fed after a walk, as eat before bowel and bladder emptying is harmful to health.
- In dogs, unlike cats, food should not be freely available for the whole day. If your pet has not eaten his breakfast or dinner, remove the food after a while until the next feeding.
- Try to show courage and resist this begging and sad look and not give the dog tidbits from your table. Otherwise, the gastric juice will be secreted by the dog during the owner’s meal, which is harmful.
- If possible, adhere to the regime and feed the dog at about the same time of the day. Most veterinarians believe that small and medium dogs should be fed twice a day, and large dogs weighing more than 30-35 kg – once a day.
- Avoid active games and great physical exertion immediately after feeding – this is fraught with the risk of an inversion of the stomach in the dog.
- If your pet has an indigestion, it should not be fed until the symptoms have stopped or the veterinarian has made a diagnosis.
- Do not overfeed the dog! Remember that your pet is an evolutionary descendant of predatory animals and it may practically have no feeling of satiation directly with food. And obesity and overweight not only worsen the quality of life of the dog, but can also lead to serious health problems.
- It is advisable to always keep bowls with water and food for the dog in one place of the apartment. It is very useful to use bowls on a stand with adjustable height – for a dog (especially a large one), eating without tilting your head down is much more natural and pleasant. In addition, the bowls on the stands will not slide on the floor and this is also convenient.
- Keep your dog calm while eating. No need to distract the dog, talk with her, explain to the children that the pet is having lunch and does not need to disturb him.
- Always ensure that your dog has fresh drinking water in the bowl that should be replaced regularly.
What ’s the difference between age-specific foods?
Dogs and cats become almost adult dogs and cats in their first year of life. From birth to one year of age, puppies and kittens require more nutrients than adult dogs and cats because they require more nutrients for growth. Pet age-specific foods are displayed in three levels according to the following situations (Exhibition: Partially reorganized the Pet Food Association website).
1.Pregnancy / lactation food
It is a so-called milk substitute that is given until about 4 weeks of age. There are powdered milk and liquid milk based on the components of dog and cat breast milk. There are also high-nutrition foods designed to meet the nutritional standards that mother dogs and cats need for breastfeeding.
2.Food for pregnancy / lactation / food for puppies / kittens / growth
Until around 8 weeks of age, we give so-called baby food. If the mother and the weaning child live together, they may imitate the mother and start eating dry food, but if not, instead of suddenly giving granular dry food, It is a good idea to increase the size of the grains, paste the flake or powdered food, or make it into a wet type.
From about 8 weeks of age to 1 year old (up to 1 and a half years for large dogs, up to about 10 months for ultra-small dogs), give food indicated for puppies and kittens, growing or growth . Vitamins, minerals and amino acids required for bone and body growth are fortified, making it a comprehensive nutritional diet designed to provide sufficient protein and lipids.
After 1 year old, it is displayed as adult dog / cat or maintenance period, maintenance, etc., and there are various types of food.
In addition, from the age of 6 to 8 years old, attention has been drawn to the increase in dogs and cats who live longer, such as “food for elderly dogs and cats”, “food for elderly dogs and cats”, and “food for long-lived dogs and cats”. There is also a “food” (how to divide the age and how to write it depends on the product and manufacturer). This food is adjusted to low fat and low calorie according to the decrease of the amount of exercise and metabolism, and the component is adjusted in consideration of the decrease of each function of the body and the supplement of nutrition.