How Much Should I Feed My Dog?

Feeding Dog

Are you one of those who are concerned 24/7 for your pet’s health and feed. If so, then this article might just be the right thing for you. Keeping a dog is something many of us adore. Dogs can be your best buddies, your partner in crime, your mood boosters, and so much more.

If you want your dog to be energetic, playful and exciting, it is essential to observe what you feed him and how much you feed. On that note, one of the primary factors that determine the health of your dog is the amount of dog feed.

To maintain a healthy lifestyle for your dog, you must keep a closer check on the amount of food intake as well as the metabolic rate of your dog’s body. Determining the serving size for your dog type can be tricky and not so simple.

Health Problems That Could Be Caused By Your Dog Food

The portion size will determine what health category your dog falls in. You should feed your dog until dog satisfies. If too little, your dog will stay hungry, and it will make your dog nutrition deficient thus resulting in weakness, stunted growth, making your dog dull and inattentive and

It will cause many other health issues too. However, if fed too much, it will still do no good but harm to your dog. In that case, it will cause weight gain, thus become obese, which, as a result, will contribute to several health issues such as:

It is sad to tell you that if your pet ever got above health issues, eventually leading to a decrease in the life span of your beloved pet. So let’s discuss more, and if I ever miss some vital point, please share your thoughts in our comment section.

How Often Should I Feed My Dog?

In general, dogs should feed twice a day, but that can vary.

Age, breed and health conditions contribute to determining this. But the thing to remember is that dogs are very smart in demanding food again and again by making that cute little puppy face. It can easily create a fool of you so, beware of that.

Usually, two meals a day are enough, but if you find your dog begging for food, a little snacky treat will not harm. Regular feedings at any time should stop as it will disturb the schedule of your canine friend, leading again to obesity and stuff you do not want to happen to your pup.

How Do You Measure Dog Food Portions?

Now the question arises, how can someone determine the exact amount of food for a dog? The answer is, you have to find it by yourself. Because what your friend feeds her poodle per day might not be enough for yours. Moreover, the needs differ from dog to dog and breed to breed. Food intake of an average female Collie will be different from a pregnant one. Similarly, The nutritional demands of a 2-month-old Yorkshire will differ from those of a 2-year-old Yorkie. For that, you need to be a keen observer of your dog’s daily activities. Following a few necessary steps can help you know more about your little partner.

Steps are as follows:

STEP#1:

First of all, you need to have a separate diary to write all the activities and all-important points determining the health of your dog. Not only will it help you to know the exact amount of food that your dog requires, but, it will also help you to learn and understand more about the likes and dislikes of your dog. It will help you to make your relationship with your pet even stronger.

Diary and dog
Image by Amanda Truscott from Pixabay

The food intake of a dog can be determined by observing several parameters, namely;

  • Gender
  • Physical activity of the dog
  • The type of food
  • The number of times you feed it in a day
  • Their body size and weight
  • The metabolic rate
  • And still more.

To start, you can observe the feeding guide on your dog’s food label. This feeding guide is usually presented in a tabular form and looks something like this;

Recommended Daily Feeding Chart

Below image will shows you the amounts of feed generally recommended for a dog over one day. However, it can be different for different age groups (adult dogs should usually be fed two times a day, whereas little pups may require more servings). So you can divide the amount of food given as per the number of times you feed your dog in a day.

Photo credits to PetMD

STEP#2:

The information given in the food labels can differ according to the specific dog type. It is understandable now that different dogs have different requirements.

When we combined the above information with our dog’s lifestyle, It will be easier to determine the portion size for our dog

Eg. For a 35 pound corgi with weight gain tendency, we might start with 2 cups of food per 24 hours. Whereas, for a hyper 35-pound Border Collie the amount of food required will increase a bit. So sticking to the guidelines on the food labels and diet charts are a good thing. But it’s better to put in some effort and time to observe the eating habits of your little friend before deciding their meal plan.

Dog Foods
Photo by Sam Moqadam on Unsplash

STEP#3

The next step should be to tweak the amount by using a scale or body condition scoring system.

Keeping a track on your dog’s weight-gaining progress is necessary to know the results. If you notice an inappropriate gain or loss in the bodyfat and weight of your dog, you can accordingly, adjust the portion sizes.

In general healthy dogs have:

  • An hourglass figure ( It means that the dog’s abdomen is narrower than the hips and the chest )
  • Are tucked up when observed from the side. This means the dog’s chest is closer to ground when he is in the standing position.
  • Have ribs that are easily felt with light pressure under palpable fat except for some breeds.

Every time you incorporate some new food in your dog’s diet, you’ll need to repeat the entire process.

STEP#4

Visiting a veterinarian regularly is also very important to keep your dog healthy and fit. It will assure no risk regarding your dog feed or anything related to your dog’s health. In case, your dog suffers some medical issue; your veterinarian will help you to know their specialized feedings techniques and other requirements.

Moreover, planning a meal schedule becomes easy when guided by a professional. Following the above steps will make the health journey of your pet more comfortable and very simple to achieve.

Nutritional Requirements Of A Puppy And An Adult Dog

It is preferable to regulate the food intake of an adult dog strictly. Doing this is not difficult. Check out on your pet’s weight and make sure the BMI of your adult dog remains normal. Make sure not to feed him more than what is recommended by the veterinarian.

Over eating will also make your dog lazy and inattentive. Know your dog’s weight and calculate the calorie intake your dog should have per day, then divide it on the number of meals in a day and then you are good to go. For your ease, healthy body weights for different breeds have been given in the tables below.

Average Adult Weights For Common Small Breed Dogs:

BREEDWEIGHT
CHIHUAHUA5lbs
SHIH TZU12lbs
MINIATURE POODLE12lbs
PUG16lbs
DACHSHUND/MINI DACHSHUND10lbs/10lbs
POMERANIAN5lbs
BOSTON TERRIER18lbs
MALTESE6lbs
YORKSHIRE TERRIER7lbs
FRENCH BULLDOG22lbs

Most of the small breed dogs have weight lying in the above-mentioned range. However, larger breeds have a different and broader range of weights. Even it differs for male and female dogs of the same breed. Following are some of the leading large breeds of dogs and their weights

Average Adult Weights Of Common Large Breed Dogs

BREEDMALEFEMALE
LABRADOR RETRIEVER75lbs65lbs
GOLDEN RETRIEVER70lbs60lbs
DOBERMAN PINSCHER85lbs75lbs
ROTTWEILER115lbs90lbs
POODLE(STANDARD)65lbs45lbs
GERMAN SHEPHERD75lbs60lbs
COLLIE70lbs60lbs
GREAT DANE160lbs130lbs
MASTIFF200lbs150lbs
GERMAN SHORTHAIRED POINTER65lbs50lbs

Food Intake For Puppies

Since puppies are in their growing age, they need to take a diet rich in calcium to promote their bone growth.

Puppies require frequent small servings in their early months when they are switching from mother feed to solid food. After about four months of their early life, they will need three servings of food per day, and then it will be quickly reduced to only two meals per day.

When fed 3-4 times a day, it gets more comfortable for the young puppies to digest their food properly and thus maintain their energy levels. Despite their quick growth rate, it is essential to maintain their calorie intake to keep their weight under control as obese puppies are more likely to grow into overweight dogs.

Share among friends

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *