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Diet

There’s a lot of information on the internet about diets for dogs. The choice of food products designed for all types of dogs is almost endless and has dramatically increased over the last 20 years. Check out www.BestDogDiet.co.uk for an interesting review of available options.

There are advocates for self-prepared meals and fresh food only diets. Others believe a balanced diet can more readily be achieved by adding a supplement to an already ‘scientifically formulated’ dry food.

The purpose of this page is not to determine that any one food or diet is best for a particular dog, but to suggest that some common sense is applied to your selection.

Your dog is from the wolf family and is a natural scavenger as well as a hunter. This means they are naturally disposed to eating meat and bones, but will also eat almost whatever they can get their paws on.

Dogs need a balanced diet that includes a mixture of nutrients such as proteins, fats, carbohydrates, minerals and vitamins. So a diet of meat alone is likely to be deficient in essential elements such as calcium and iron. Additionally, there are some foodstuffs that are naturally poisonous to your dog including: chocolate, high sugar content foods (sweets etc.), garlic, onion, tofu, high salt content foods (bar snacks etc.).

Dogs of different sizes and age require different diets. For example, puppies generally need about 50% more calories per pound of body weight daily in order to meet growth requirements. In mature dogs, larger breeds typically need around 20 calories per pound whilst smaller breeds can require 40 calories per pound of bodyweight per day.

However, every dog is unique and whilst you should always follow your vet’s advice and read the labelling on the packaging of any foods you decide to give to your dog, you should observe your dog and monitor its weight to reasonably understand their requirements. Obesity is far more common in the UK than malnourishment and can lead to complaints such as diabetes and arthritis.

Ultimately, you are responsible for feeding your dog, so take the time to select what you believe will be best diet for you and your dog. Every dog is an individual and every dog owner has individual circumstances to take into consideration.

You may consider supplementing your dog’s diet either to treat an illness or injury or to simple keep them in top condition. We recommend Barker and Wags LeapDOG as a treatment for hip dysplasia.