While it’s tempting to feed your furry pal lots of treats, it’s best to feed them food that is specifically made for dogs. Feeding them table scraps means they may also be consuming more calories and fat than necessary and, if they become overweight, are at greater risk of health complications such as diabetes which is not only hurting your best friend, but a costly disease.
Puppy dog nutrition
Generally young puppies eat three times a day and older puppies twice a day. The first year of a puppy’s life is critical – they need protein for muscle growth and organ development; calcium for growing bones and joints; and Omega fatty acids for energy and a healthy, shiny coat.
Wean your pup on to new food gradually, ideally over 7 days. Choose a puppy food that is made from quality ingredients with a high protein content to help provide the energy and protein they need, and meet their vitamin and mineral requirements. Look for a range that contains DHA, which is important for brain and vision development.
Adult dog nutrition
For many dogs, all food is good food! Dogs generally love to eat, but you need to make sure your pet is getting the correct balance of vital nutrients they need to live a happy, healthy life. When your dog’s digestive system is functioning smoothly, a typical meal takes 7 to 10 hours to pass through the digestive system. Check packaging and nutritional panels for ensure for a complete and balanced meal.
Feeding your dog wet vs dry food
Wet food offers different benefits to dry food. Wet food often contains less fillers and preservatives, the nutritional quality is generally higher, and most dogs prefer the taste, so there is less spoilage. However, dry food helps to scrape plaque and tartar off your dog’s teeth and is easy to store.
Foods to avoid
Human digestive systems work differently to those of the canine family, so foods that are considered healthy for human consumption could actually be deadly for your pet. As you may have already discovered, your furry pal will try to devour virtually anything put in front of them. Unfortunately, this includes foods that can be dangerous or deadly. Here’s a just some of the foods that dogs should avoid:
Even minor spills by humans are a health risk for pets. Just a small amount of alcohol can result in a change in behaviour, breathing problems, cardiac arrest, induced coma or death.
- Chocolate and caffeine
Chocolate contains caffeine and theobromine, which are both poisonous for dogs. The chemicals are diuretics and can cause dramatic fluid loss through vomiting, diarrhoea and excessive urination. Be extra careful during Easter!
Avocados contain persin, a fatty acid that is hazardous for dogs. Symptoms of avocado poisoning include vomiting, diarrhoea and respiratory distress.
Onions contain thiosulphate causing damage to the red blood cells causing them to burst.
- Sultanas, raisins and grapes
Whether they are fresh grapes or dried as sultanas and raisins, keep these out of reach.