Top 5 Signs You Are Feeding Your Dog Right
Feeding Your Dog Right
Determining what food and how much to feed your dog can be difficult since food requirements vary between weights and breed. If he eats too much, he will become fat; if he eats too little, on the other hand, he will grow thin and weak.
Feeding guides are incredibly useful to gain an idea of the correct portions to give for each meal. For example, if your vet recommends the Eukanuba dog food brand for your pet, the Eukanuba dog food feeding chart will give you an estimate of how much food to start giving your dog.
It’s also good practice to look at your dog’s body condition to determine if the amount of food you are giving should be adjusted. Basically, there are two ways to tell if your pet is getting the right amount of food: by checking the ribs and checking the waist.
When checking the ribs of long-haired pets, you must feel the ribs under the coat and not see their outline. For short-haired pets, you must see some outline of the ribs, but they should not be predominant.
When checking the waist, dogs must have a narrowing area between the hind legs and the ribs when seen from above. When seen from the side, there must be a noticeable tuck. Remember that the waist is the first thing to disappear when a pet gains excessive weight.
It can get confusing and you might have a tendency to overthink the appearance and behavior of your pet, so to help you out, here are signs indicating that your dog is properly fed and healthy:
1. Clean, Shiny Coat
Healthy pets will have clean, shiny coats because of natural oil and shedding. Make sure to bathe your pets routinely or as needed whenever they get dirty.
If your dog is often chewing, scratching or licking, this can be a sign of skin irritation, the presence of fleas, or a bug bite. Itchiness can also be caused by a bad reaction or allergies to some ingredients in your dog’s food. Furthermore, this can be a sign that your dog is uncomfortable. You will need to schedule a vet check-up to address such a problem.
2. Regular Bowel and Bladder Movements
Checking out your pet’s’ poop is the best way to know if they have a tummy ache. Healthy bowel movements do not come with mucus, worms, blood, a tarry appearance, a chalky white discoloration, diarrhea, or a greasy coating. A change in your dog’s stool consistency may be a sign that the food you’re giving him is not right for his digestive system. This can also be caused by allergies, a bacterial infection, stress, colitis, an obstruction, inflammatory bowel disease, pancreatitis, or ingestion of toxic substances.
It is also important to check the color of your dog’s urine. Transparent yellow is a sign of good health. Bright or dark yellow can indicate dehydration. Orange is usually associated with icterus or jaundice, pancreatic problems, gallbladder problems, damaged blood cells, severe dehydration, and liver disease. If it is pink, cloudy or red, it can be a sign of more serious illnesses like clotting disease, cancer, or urinary tract infection. Visiting the vet for further testing is crucial.
3. Steady Lean Weight
A top health concern for vets today is pet obesity. Excessive weight will also cause similar problems in dogs as it does in human beings like heart and lung disease, joint and bone diseases, diabetes, cancer, and skin conditions.
Your dog must have a consistent, lean weight that does not change much. Pets will also need portion control in terms of treats and meals. A sudden increase or drop in weight can be the result of a lack of proper nutrients or an excess of carbs. Speak with your vet and discuss your dog’s meal plan.
4. Odor-free, Clean Ears
Clear ears indicate good health – no discharge, no waxy build-up, and no pungent smell. Routine cleaning is recommended since it is normal for your dog’s ears to get dirty. Having clean ears can also help maintain a normal body temperature.
Smelly ears are a tell-tale sign of an ear infection. Chronic ear issues can also be caused by food allergies. Whenever you suspect that your dog is suffering from an ear infection, schedule a checkup with your vet right away.
5. Alert and Engaged Manner
A dog that is fed properly is always eager to spend time with the family, come to you for playtime, greet you at the front door, and observe and watch with interest.
If your dog suddenly becomes disengaged and spends time alone after you switched his food, this may be because his food is not giving him the essential nutrients he needs. Food will affect everything, so once he starts acting in a way he hasn’t been before you changed his food, his new food may be the culprit. Pay attention to such changes and have him checked by your vet.
Whenever you notice that your dog is unwell, schedule a checkup with your vet immediately. Furthermore, always check with your vet before buying any new food, supplements or vitamins, and rely on reputable providers of pet supplies and accessories. Remember that your dog cannot always tell you if something is wrong. Vets can give you more insights on what is happening with your dog and share tips to make your pet healthy and happy at all times.
Farah Al-Khojai is the Managing Partner of Pet’s Delight. A passionate entrepreneur, Farah holds a Bsc in Government from the London School of Economics. She is always on the lookout for new opportunities to develop and grow the pet and equestrian retail and wholesale market in the UAE and beyond, and is proud to be at the helm of the first and the largest pet care provider in the market representing world-class brands including Orijen, Applaws, Hunter, Savic, Flamingo, Ruffwear and Rogz.