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Just like us 2 legged creatures, the 4 legged creatures too can suffer with many health issues when they are carrying extra baggage. Having a fat dog is not something pet owners should strive for because it just means you are putting your pet a risk for many issues as they age. But, keeping a dog in tip top shape is not easy, just like it’s not easy to keep ourselves in tip top shape.
Diet and exercise play a huge role in making sure you don’t end up wit a fat dog. Here are some great tips on how to achieve a healthy and happy fur baby.
How often to feed your dog?
How often do you feed your dog? This is an important question asked by many dog lovers and dog owners. Your dog’s age and health must be taken into account. Otherwise you risk creating new health issues. Here’s some tips about feeding you dog.
From your dog’s first birthday and onwards you have three methods of feeding your dog to choose from: free eating, portion control, or scheduled. If you dog isn’t overweight, you can try the free eating in which you keep a dish of food out for your dog all the time. Your dog can graze when he feels the need to eat. This is good for high energy dogs that burn a lot of calories or nursing mothers as we mentioned earlier.
Portion control is another common way to feed your dog. You put out enough food for a time period of 8-12 hours. Ask your vet for portion amounts. Feed that amount twice a day. And the last method is scheduled feedings. This is when you aren’t worried about overeating but you don’t want to leave food out all the time. You place your dog’s food and let him eat for 30 minutes. When he’s done eating you pick up the dish and throw out leftovers.
Remember to pay attention to changing eating habits. For example, your dog may want more food during cold weather and less in hot weather. Or if you notice your dog is always hungry, you may need adjust how much you’re feeding them. If he’s always hungry but overweight, look for a diet food which will help him fill up without gaining more weight. Something with limited ingredients in it.
Homemade Dog Food
Home made diets are important in the dog feeding. Many a times, the commercial diets consist of food items that have artificial coloring agents and flavoring agents that are harmful to the dog’s body. Home made food items have the guarantee of freshness in the preparation unlike the ready-made commercial items.
The preservatives added in the commercial food items may not be the suitable ones to the dogs from the health point of view. Even in case of renal diseases in dogs, the home made diets may be made with ground beef, slices of bread, calcium carbonate, boiled eggs etc.
The purpose is to have the restricted protein supply in the feed items prepared. This should be carried out with home made diets prepared exclusively for the dogs suffering from renal diseases. Water is added in sufficient quantities to help the proper metabolism in the digestion-impaired renal cases.
The dog may have allergic symptoms like severe itching, which may not get corrected by different kinds of medications employed over a period of time. Such cases may get easily treated once the dog food is changed from the commercial type of food to the home made food items.
Often, the home made food items are prepared using the freezing procedures to kill the germs or by adding grape seed extracts to provide sufficient antioxidants to the home made food items. Food grade vinegar is also added in many times to the meat pieces prepared in a fresh manner. All these can be enriched with vitamin supplements that are available in fruit essences, fish oil etc.
Cranberry juice, bananas, fish and meat are prepared in a quality manner and no preservatives are added during the preparation of these kinds of food items and the dog becomes more active after the consumption of such food items.
Choosing to go the homemade diet route may help with your dogs weight as there are no added fillers and stuff that your dog doesn’t need.
Exercise Your Dog
Keeping your dog in shape means keeping him/her active, just like keeping yourself in shape. If you laid around 24/7 you would be fat, out of shape and have health issues.
Dogs need things to keep them busy when you aren’t there to do so. Lots of fun toys to chase after, throw around, chew apart, etc. There are many toys we can offer to our pets, and I always make sure to have a great selection of ropes, balls, stuffed toys, squeakers, toys that treats go in, and interactive toys.
Keeping your dog healthy, active and happy is actually easier than you think. Take time every day to make smart choices for them, as you are all they have and they depend on you for everything. A walk, a kiss, a meal, a pet or scratch, a vet visit, a warm and comfy place to lay, and last – your love.
Do you have a dog? Come on over to our Shop with Poika Facebook page and share a picture of your dog.