5 Essential Nutritional Tips for your Canine Companion

carbohydrates diet fats minerals nutrients proteins vitamins weaning Nov 11, 2021
Dog's healthy dinner

A balanced diet is vital for your dog’s overall health, wellbeing, and development. Below are five nutritional tips to help give your canine companion the essential ingredients they need to hopefully live a long, healthy, and happy life. We hope you find this article helpful, especially if you are a new owner and starting a puppy training programme.

1. Essential Nutrients

Nutrients are elements attained from food and used by a dog as a vital source of energy. Nutrients are so important because they help your dog maintain and repair body tissues which is crucial for their body’s development. There are six important classes of nutrients your pets require for optimum health. These consist of water, vitamins, proteins, fats, carbohydrates, and minerals. 

Water

Water is essential for your pet’s digestive system. Water enables your pet to break down the food they consume and then helps in the absorption of nutrients.

Vitamins

Vitamins help your dog maintain a healthy coat, good skin, as well as strengthening their bones and teeth, and giving them the energy that they require to function each day.

Proteins

Proteins like vitamins enable your pet’s body to properly function. Proteins contain essential amino acids which also help provide them with a healthy coat, good skin, strong muscle development and tissue repair.

Carbohydrates

Dogs can convert certain carbohydrate sources into simple sugars that the body can easily absorb into the blood system. The most essential function of carbohydrates is to provide your dog with sufficient energy.

Fats

Balancing fats is very important. Fat provides necessary energy as well as helping aid in supple skin and the maintenance of a healthy and strong coat.

Minerals

Minerals such as calcium, sodium and potassium, are important as they act as structural components that help to make up your dog’s bones and teeth. Minerals are also helpful for retaining fluid stability and for ensuring your dog’s muscles, heart, and brain work properly. A mineral deficiency can be exhibited by a dog displaying signs of fatigue, extreme dehydration, excessive salivating, joint disease, and weight loss.

2. Weaning and Feeding

The first few months of your dog’s life is so important for their future development, as you will need to help them gradually reduce their dependency on their mother’s milk and begin feeding on regular puppy food. This process is known as weaning and should generally start when your puppy is aged between three and four weeks old and is preferably completed by the time the puppy reaches seven to eight weeks old.

3. Eating Plans for Adult Dogs

Adult dogs need adequate nutrients to sustain their energy and to maintain and repair body tissues. Dogs come in many shapes and sizes and their energy levels vary and so the amount you feed your adult dog will depend upon these factors.

4. Eating Plans for Senior Dogs

As your dog gets older, they will need a good, well-balanced diet that is lower in calories, higher in fibre and has adequate protein and fat. When it comes to feeding your senior dog, your goal should always be to help maintain their health and body weight, whilst reducing the onset of any chronic diseases or present diseases that they may be experiencing.

5. Dog Obesity

As a responsible dog owner, you should avoid overfeeding your dog. Obesity in dogs can lead to a host of health problems. Consider moving your pet in to another room when you eat, reduce snacks and treats, and ensure their meals and treats are placed in their own bowl. As well as following a healthy nutrition plan, your dog should also exercise daily. A dog walk is a great way of introducing exercise into your dog’s daily life and it is vital for their overall health and wellbeing.

Final thoughts

Your dog’s nutrition is essential for them to survive and maintain a healthy body. By following these nutritional tips and selecting a healthy nutritional food plan for your pet, you are giving them the best chance to live a long, healthy, and happy life.

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