When you buy or adopt a puppy, it is common nature to get excited and caught up in buying cute toys, stylish collars, dog beds, and treats. However, one of the most important purchases is often paid the least attention: Food. Choosing the right food for your puppy should be of more concern than buying anything else as the food it eats is what determines how healthy he/she will grow up being. In particular, choosing the right food for large breeds is more important than for small breeds because large breeds develop quicker and their bones are forced to change quickly. It may be wise to check with your veterinarian on whether the breed of puppy you own is prone to any diseases like hip dysplasia, so that you can purchase nutritional food or vitamins for prevention.
All types of dog food are not the same
Large dog breeds grow and develop quickly, changing from puppies to big dogs fairly quickly and buying dog food that is appropriate for large breeds is critical. What you feed your large breed dog is really important and it will either pave the way for a healthy future or a sick one. Make sure that the food you give to your furry friend is nutritionally balanced and contains enough calories to sustain him or her. There are various brands of dog food on the market and it can be intimidating trying to select the right one. The best thing to do is to read the ingredients and nutritional values on the back; try to stay away from food that contains by-products and food dyes, as these are not generally healthy if consumed over extensive periods of time.
A Nutritionally Balanced Diet is Important
If you neglect to feed your dog nutritionally dense and balanced food then you may be exposing them to disorders like hip/elbow dysplasia, developmental orthopedic disease, and osteochondritis – all of these affect bones and joints which could create intense pain in your pet’s body. When dogs develop disorders that prevent them from enjoying the most out of their lives, such as chasing their toys, playing in the water, doing agility, and even walking to their food dish, their quality of life deteriorates. Large breed dogs are very sensitive to nutritional imbalances, but there are ways you can ensure they are balanced and stay thriving.
Bone and joint disorders occur in large breeds due to genetics, over-consuming dietary calcium, and overfeeding. And while genetics is a little hard to combat, the other two are fairly easy to prevent. Your dog only eats what you give him, as he is unable to make himself a snack. Overeating is the owner’s fault, and a common example of this is constantly leaving a full food bowl for your dog to chow down on whenever he feels peckish or bored. It has been discovered that this form of feeding can cause puppies to grow too fast which in turn, can lead to bone problems because the bones are growing at a high rate. A healthier alternative is implementing restricted feeding, where the owner dishes out food at specific times and does not leave a bowl of food out all day.
Calcium is Important for Big Dogs
Calcium is beneficial for dogs but only in specific amounts. For large breed puppies, their food should contain a calcium/phosphorus ratio of 1:1 to 1.8:1, but it is always smart to show your veterinarian the food you are feeding your dog. It is also important to understand that canned foods tend to contain higher fat and calorie levels than kibble. Some large breeds are also sensitive to high fat foods that can cause pancreatitis, so always monitor your dog to make sure they are feeling and acting healthy.
Large dog breeds can develop serious disorders more than small breeds, and it is imperative that owners do their research on the dog and the different types of available food before bring their puppy home. You want to ensure that the food you give your beloved pet is nutritionally balanced, measured out, and contains necessary vitamins to ensure prevention against hip dysplasia and other related issues. While there is no guarantee that your dog won’t ever develop these disorders, at least you can feel confident that you are taking precaution with his or her food. Our dogs love us unconditionally and we must return the love by feeding them the very best possible.
There are many reasons why it’s important to feed your dog the proper type of dog food, and if your dog could speak they would thank you for it.