Helpful Dog Feeding Tips

Dogs come in all shapes, sizes and personalities. As you watch your pet pooch grow from puppy-hood to full grown canine, there are several feeding Do's and Don'ts that can be the make or break of your dog-master relationship. Feeding your dog is a special time for you both, and as such it must be done right. Here is a list of our most helpful tips on how to best feed your dog.

  • Never feed your dog from the table or from your plate. This will encourage drooling and attention seeking acts like barking loudly and begging.
  • Large breed dogs should be feed from raised bowls to prevent them from swallowing air while eating, which can lead to bloat.
  • After you've placed the food in its bowl, let your dog eat in peace. Removing the bowl while it's still eating will cause distrust, which can lead to food aggression from your dog. Make sureyour dog feels comfortable during mealtimes and can see you as an asset and not a threat.
  • Supplementing your dog's food can be harmful to its digestion and lead to an upset stomach or diarrhoea. A dog's digestive system is very different from that of a human and cannot handle food changes. Unless you are advised otherwise by your vet, we suggest you stick with one variety of good quality dog food and do not add in any supplements.
  • Consult your vet if you notice your dog is not responding positively to a certain brand/type of food. Under the direction of your vet, you may consider changing its diet gradually over a period of a couple days or a week.
  • When adjusting your pet to a different food make the transition gradual by mixing portions of both foods until you are able to slowly phase out the old. Doing so will limit the chances of diarrhoea, that usually come if the food is suddenly changed.
  • Follow the feeding amount guidelines on the dog food package.
  • Don't over-feed your dog. If a dog does not eat its entire meal at a go, chances are you are feeding it more than it can handle. Not all dogs will eat the full amount of food that is advised by the manufacturer. If this is the case, monitor your dog's weight and activity level and make adjustments to its feeding accordingly.
  • If you are feeding your dog the right amount of food, it should be producing stool that is firm, dark brown, and crinkly. If it is firm, but softer towards the end, this is a sign of overfeeding.
  • If you are monitoring your dog's diet, but it has an upset stomach, you could try feeding it sweet potatoes or sweet potato chips from the pet store. Sweet potatoes act as a natural stool hardener and do not make your dog constipated like most medicines do.
  • Feed your dog at the same time each day. Maintaining a set routine for when your dog eats will make it easier for you to keep him on a bathroom schedule. Depending on the breed, consult your vet on how many times you should feed your dog.
  • If you mix water into dry food, the normal ratio should be 4 parts dry food to 1 part water.
  • Feeding your dog before a long drive can lead to car-sickness. Do not feed your dog an hour before or after exercise either as this can contribute to stomach bloat, which can be life threatening.
  • Drinking water should be available at all times. Because most dogs drool excessively, keep tabs on the water making sure it is fresh and pure.