Does your furry friend perk up when he knows it’s time for dinner? We’re guessing the answer to that one is a yes. Fido is very, very enthusiastic about food, and he isn’t shy about letting us know it. While filling your pup’s bowl isn’t exactly rocket science, there are some things to consider. A local Langley, BC vet goes over some of them below.
Pay Attention To Labels
One of the best things you can do is get into the habit of reading labels. Choose brands that list meat, fish, or chicken first and most frequently. Avoid products with long lists of ingredients that read like science experiments. This applies to both food and treats!
Consult Your Vet
Our canine pals are all unique, and their diets should reflect that. Fido’s exact needs will depend on his age, weight, breed, and health. Ask your vet for specific advice.
Make Changes Slowly
Changing your furry pal’s food too rapidly can cause tummy troubles. Make any adjustments to Fido’s diet slowly, over the course of several days. Start by mixing the old and new brands together, and slowly increase the proportions of the new food.
Always Measure Portion Sizes
Overfeeding your canine buddy by as little as ten calories a day can lead to a weight gain of a pound a year. Giving Fido a hundred calories too much a day can translate to an extra pound a month. That’s a lot for a dog! Use a measuring cup or pitcher to portion out kibble.
Choose A Life-Stage Food
Fido’s nutritional needs will change over time. Check in with your vet about your pet’s diet regularly. Ask for advice on portion sizes and suitable snacks, as well as tips on switching over from puppy food to adult formula and then, later, to senior formula.
Slow It Down
Bloat is a very dangerous condition, and is particularly common in large breeds. If your pooch eats too fast, get a bowl that will slow him down. You can also consider putting a tennis ball in his bowl. He’ll have to move it around to eat. However, this only works for medium-sized pups. Tennis balls are a choking hazard for big dogs, and may be too heavy for small ones.
Choose Healthy Snacks
Fido is very, very good at convincing us to hand over treats. There’s nothing wrong with giving your furry buddy snacks, but don’t go too crazy. Treats should only make up about 5 percent of your pet’s daily caloric intake.
Tricks For Treats
Speaking of treats, have Fido do a trick for his treats. Many dogs actually love to please their humans, so this will give your pooch a boost of confidence! Plus, it’s a great way to reinforce his training.
As your Langley, BC pet hospital, we’re dedicated to providing great veterinary care. Contact us for all of your dog’s care needs!