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How To Feed Your Dog (Duh)

You may be reading the headline and thinking…duh, I know how to feed my dog.  I put down the bowl, he eats it.  I think we’ve got our system worked out pretty well.

What I’m mostly referring to here are the two ways to feed a dog; free feeding or scheduled feeding.

Free feeding is when you leave food out all day.  The dog is free to eat when he or she wants.

Scheduled feeding is when you put down the dog’s food dish for a determined period of time whether or not the dog eats it.

You want to schedule feed, free feeding is a bad idea.  Let me tell you why…

Health reasons

When food is left out all day lots of dogs become ‘grazers’.  They’ll eat a bit here or there, never sitting down to a full meal.  Dogs weren’t meant to be grazers.  Herbivores were meant to graze.  That’s why you see cows, rabbits, horses, etc. grazing throughout the day.

Dogs are most carnivorous.  Carnivores were meant to eat a big meal and then it digests over a certain period of time.  That is how their body is set up and that is the best way for their metabolism to work.

Not only that, lots of dogs get too skinny when they are free fed.  You would think it would be the opposite, that a dog would overeat when free fed.  What happens, though, is that the food is always there.  As a plentiful and not scarce resource the dog gives food a much lesser meaning and holds it with less import.  Nearly every time when I’ve seen a dog that is too skinny that dog has been free fed.

Relationship reasons

It’s important for your dog to know that food comes from you.  You are the giver of food.  You control this all important resource.  By placing down his bowl and then collecting it 10 or 15 minutes later you send a subtle signal to your dog that you are in charge.

For those of you who are currently being held hostage by your dog let me tell you, being in charge of your dog is a good thing.  Scheduled feeding is just one way of communicating that to the dog.

House training reasons

Does your dog have any house training issues?  Dogs are FAR easier to house train when they are schedule fed versus free fed.  If you know when your dog is eating you start to know when your dog needs to go out.  If your dog is eating whenever and however much he or she feels like you’ll find that it is much more difficult to housebreak your dog.

Moral of the story, scheduled feeding is so much more valuable for a variety of reasons.

If This Is In Your Dog’s Food, Watch Out

 

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Too Much, Too Little Fat in Dog Diets

Fat has an undeservedly bad reputation among pet owners since it is seen as the main contributor in obesity and its many health issues. Just as in humans, fat is an important macronutrient in a dog’s diet, and too little of it results in health problems just as too much of it leads to obesity. The trick then is to know the right balance so that your dog will get proper nutrition where fat is concerned.

Functions of Fat

Let’s first discuss the importance of fat in the maintenance of proper health in canines. As a macronutrient, fat is a highly concentrated form of energy with a capacity to supply nearly as much energy as protein and carbohydrates combined. Other important functions of fat include improving the texture and palatability of the dog food, as well as carrying fat-soluble vitamins.

The final result is a healthier body for the dog by fostering an improved appetite, higher levels of energy and a shinier coat. Therefore, eliminating fat altogether or greatly decreasing it from a dog’s diet can likely lead to an early death.

Sources of Fat

Now that the importance of fat has been established, the next issue is the sources of good fat. Most commercial dog foods have varying amounts of good fat with the most common sources being tallow, lard, cottonseed oil, poultry fat and hydrogenated vegetable oils. Veterinarians do not recommend fish oil and hydrogenated coconut oil to be fed to dogs mainly because of their non-digestibility. In contrast, the fat content in commercial dog food is 90% digestible.

Requirements of Fat

Unfortunately, many commercial dog food products contain too much or too little of the required amount of fat for dogs. Most of these animal products may even have higher-than-required amounts of fat because the manufacturers want to improve on the palatability of the dog food.

The outcome is obvious: A dog that can potentially end up overeating due to the palatability, which may encourage a dog owner to continue purchasing the dog food. Sadly, the effect can be harmful in the long run with a dog slowly, but inevitably, becoming obese as time passes.

So, what are the requirements for fat in a dog’s daily diet? The answer depends on the age, physical condition and energy demands of the dog with the fat requirement range in percentage of total diet are as follows:

  • Puppies: 8 to 17 percent
  • Adult Dogs: 5 to 15 percent
  • Performance Dog: 8 to 20 percent
  • Racing Sled Dog: 50 percent
  • Lactating Dog: 8 to 17 percent

Too little fat and your dog will suffer from impaired reproduction, slower wound healing, drier coat and scaly skin, higher risks for skin infections and other growth deformities. Too much fat and your pet will suffer from obesity and pancreatitis along with other complications.

You can avoid inflicting these aggravations on your dog by asking the veterinarian about the proper diet with the right fat content. Your pet will then be able to reap the benefits of having fat in his body and you can avoid the expenses that are associated with treating dog obesity.

Content written by Philip Harris of www.ohmydogsupplies.com, look for current discounts on car seat covers for dogs online.

Passion for Protein in Dog Food

Dogs and their ancestors have a storied love affair with protein with meat being the primary source. In the wild, prey was hunted down for their meat while only a very small portion of other food items were eaten to make up for the equally tiny amount of fats, carbohydrates and fiber needed by the canine’s body. Even in modern commercial dog food products, protein forms the majority of the nutrient content since the domesticated dogs’ metabolism have changed little, if at all, from their wild ancestors’ metabolism from thousands of years ago.

Indeed, to say that there is passion for protein in dog food is an understatement. But with such passion also comes the discussions that make protein a controversial topic in the industry. This article will attempt to shed light about the passion for protein in your pet dog’s diet.

It’s Not the Protein Per Se

Lest misconceptions develop, one thing must be made clear first. It is not proteins per se that dogs require but the building blocks in these macronutrients – the amino acids.

There are 22 amino acids in protein sources, which are then divided into essential and non-essential sources. Take note that these terms refer to the body’s capability to naturally produce the amino acids instead of their critical functions for, indeed, each amino acid is important in the maintenance of good health. Thus, the twelve essential amino acids can be synthesized by the body while the ten non-essential amino acids must be consumed from natural food sources as the body cannot produce them on its own.

Importance in All Systems

These amino acids perform a wide variety of functions too numerous to enumerate in this short article. Suffice it to say that proteins are essential for all aspects of good growth and development including the circulatory, nervous, digestive, excretory and skeletal systems. Plus, proteins are converted to energy and stored as fat, which will be used later on for energy as well.

It is then no surprise why dogs require protein in large quantities. With their active lifestyle, fast metabolism and other unique nutritional requirements, your pet dogs rely on their owners – you, none other – for their protein sources on a daily basis.

Not Just Any Protein

Keep in mind, however, that not all protein sources are created equal. You must be careful about the kinds of proteins provided to your pet lest health complications occur. For example, raw meat may look yummy to a dog because it appeals to primitive instincts but it’s not the best protein source for a pet canine. Raw meat may contain harmful bacteria like salmonella and E. coli that leads to symptoms like extreme dehydration, diarrhea and vomiting, among other signs.

Veterinarians suggest fish meal, bone meal and other protein-rich commercial dog food products instead. These products have been especially formulated to address the nutritional requirements from amino acids to zinc of dogs.

Despite all the passion for protein in dog food, we suggest not overdoing it either since kidney function can be impaired with too much protein. Ask the veterinarian for the currently accepted levels of daily protein requirements for your pet dog just to be on the safe side.Information provided by Sarah Rhodes ofohmydogsupplies.com, where you can find a incredible assortment of raised dog bowls online.

Too Much, Too Little Fat in Dog Diets

Source: http://www.dogbehavioronline.com/public/658.cfm

Fat has an undeservedly bad reputation among pet owners since it is seen as the main contributor in obesity and its many health issues. Just as in humans, fat is an important macronutrient in a dog’s diet, and too little of it results in health problems just as too much of it leads to obesity. The trick then is to know the right balance so that your dog will get proper nutrition where fat is concerned.

Functions of Fat

Let’s first discuss the importance of fat in the maintenance of proper health in canines. As a macronutrient, fat is a highly concentrated form of energy with a capacity to supply nearly as much energy as protein and carbohydrates combined. Other important functions of fat include improving the texture and palatability of the dog food, as well as carrying fat-soluble vitamins.

The final result is a healthier body for the dog by fostering an improved appetite, higher levels of energy and a shinier coat. Therefore, eliminating fat altogether or greatly decreasing it from a dog’s diet can likely lead to an early death.

Sources of Fat

Now that the importance of fat has been established, the next issue is the sources of good fat. Most commercial dog foods have varying amounts of good fat with the most common sources being tallow, lard, cottonseed oil, poultry fat and hydrogenated vegetable oils. Veterinarians do not recommend fish oil and hydrogenated coconut oil to be fed to dogs mainly because of their non-digestibility. In contrast, the fat content in commercial dog food is 90% digestible.

Requirements of Fat

Unfortunately, many commercial dog food products contain too much or too little of the required amount of fat for dogs. Most of these animal products may even have higher-than-required amounts of fat because the manufacturers want to improve on the palatability of the dog food.

The outcome is obvious: A dog that can potentially end up overeating due to the palatability, which may encourage a dog owner to continue purchasing the dog food. Sadly, the effect can be harmful in the long run with a dog slowly, but inevitably, becoming obese as time passes.

So, what are the requirements for fat in a dog’s daily diet? The answer depends on the age, physical condition and energy demands of the dog with the fat requirement range in percentage of total diet are as follows:

– Puppies: 8 to 17 percent – Adult Dogs: 5 to 15 percent – Performance Dog: 8 to 20 percent – Racing Sled Dog: 50 percent – Lactating Dog: 8 to 17 percent

Too little fat and your dog will suffer from impaired reproduction, slower wound healing, drier coat and scaly skin, higher risks for skin infections and other growth deformities. Too much fat and your pet will suffer from obesity and pancreatitis along with other complications.

You can avoid inflicting these aggravations on your dog by asking the veterinarian about the proper diet with the right fat content. Your pet will then be able to reap the benefits of having fat in his body and you can avoid the expenses that are associated with treating dog obesity.Content written by Philip Harris ofwww.ohmydogsupplies.com, look for current discounts on car seat covers for dogs online.

Passion for Protein in Dog Food

http://www.dogbehavioronline.com/public/657.cfm

Dogs and their ancestors have a storied love affair with protein with meat being the primary source. In the wild, prey was hunted down for their meat while only a very small portion of other food items were eaten to make up for the equally tiny amount of fats, carbohydrates and fiber needed by the canine’s body. Even in modern commercial dog food products, protein forms the majority of the nutrient content since the domesticated dogs’ metabolism have changed little, if at all, from their wild ancestors’ metabolism from thousands of years ago.

Indeed, to say that there is passion for protein in dog food is an understatement. But with such passion also comes the discussions that make protein a controversial topic in the industry. This article will attempt to shed light about the passion for protein in your pet dog’s diet.

It’s Not the Protein Per Se

Lest misconceptions develop, one thing must be made clear first. It is not proteins per se that dogs require but the building blocks in these macronutrients – the amino acids.

There are 22 amino acids in protein sources, which are then divided into essential and non-essential sources. Take note that these terms refer to the body’s capability to naturally produce the amino acids instead of their critical functions for, indeed, each amino acid is important in the maintenance of good health. Thus, the twelve essential amino acids can be synthesized by the body while the ten non-essential amino acids must be consumed from natural food sources as the body cannot produce them on its own.

Importance in All Systems

These amino acids perform a wide variety of functions too numerous to enumerate in this short article. Suffice it to say that proteins are essential for all aspects of good growth and development including the circulatory, nervous, digestive, excretory and skeletal systems. Plus, proteins are converted to energy and stored as fat, which will be used later on for energy as well.

It is then no surprise why dogs require protein in large quantities. With their active lifestyle, fast metabolism and other unique nutritional requirements, your pet dogs rely on their owners – you, none other – for their protein sources on a daily basis.

Not Just Any Protein

Keep in mind, however, that not all protein sources are created equal. You must be careful about the kinds of proteins provided to your pet lest health complications occur. For example, raw meat may look yummy to a dog because it appeals to primitive instincts but it’s not the best protein source for a pet canine. Raw meat may contain harmful bacteria like salmonella and E. coli that leads to symptoms like extreme dehydration, diarrhea and vomiting, among other signs.

Veterinarians suggest fish meal, bone meal and other protein-rich commercial dog food products instead. These products have been especially formulated to address the nutritional requirements from amino acids to zinc of dogs.

Despite all the passion for protein in dog food, we suggest not overdoing it either since kidney function can be impaired with too much protein. Ask the veterinarian for the currently accepted levels of daily protein requirements for your pet dog just to be on the safe side.Information provided by Sarah Rhodes ofohmydogsupplies.com, where you can find a incredible assortment of raised dog bowls online.

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