Preventing your dog from becoming overweight is much easier than loosing the weight once it is there. Dogs, like people can put on the pounds if they consume too many calories. Age and activity level are the two most important values in determining how much we should feed our dogs.
The calorie requirements change for all dogs during their life. Younger dogs and puppies require the greatest amount of calories, proteins, and minerals due to their growth and almost unlimited activity. Older dogs require less due to their lowered activity level. The exceptions to this would be dogs that spend most of their time out of doors especially during colder weather.
Feed your dog like you would another person. Provide food as a meal instead of having a full food bowls all the time. Dogs have different personalities; some are finicky eaters, while other eat everything in sight. The quality of the food should be considered next. Proper nutrition is the cornerstone of a long and healthy life. Not long ago, most pets were fed mostly table scraps which were usually too high in calories for their metabolism.
Today our dogs spend more time indoors with us, and it has become more practical to feed them commercial dog foods. While the quality of nutrition for dogs has improved considerably with prepared pet foods, there remains a great deal to consider when choosing the proper diet plan or formula. Choose a food that best matches your dogs age group, size, and activity level by reading the manufacturers label.
Next, try to limit or eliminate treats and table scraps. If you can't resist the temptation when their begging begins, at least find a treat that is high in nutrition, such as liver treats that trainers use. And last but never least, plenty of exercise! Most dogs would rather have your attention than a treat any day. It releases their energy, keeps muscles toned, relieved boredom, and keeps their minds active. Best of all, you will both enjoy it.
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