We all want to live well, eat well and enjoy our food. And naturally, we want the same for our dogs. Just like us humans, their weight can fluctuate for lots of reasons. In this post, I share dog diet do’s and don’ts in collaboration with healthy dog food brand James Wellbeloved.
In collaboration with James WellBeloved AD
Just like me, my beloved dog Teddy has a fluctuating waistline! Especially during the colder months, he tends to put on a bit of winter weight. He prefers sleeping in his warm bed rather than being out on a wet and windy dog walk. And being such a cutie, I can’t resist giving him a treat (or two) every day. And before you know it, he’s very slightly overweight.
Sometimes it is really hard to keep his diet on track as small dog breeds (Teddy is a Maltese mix) are notoriously fussy. But when my vet explained how important it is to keep small dogs, like Teddy, slim and fit I decided to do some research into his diet and natural dog food. After nearly, four years of playing with his diet, we finally have it nailed. I’m happy as Teddy looks fit and healthy (his coat is so fluffy) and he is happy as he LOVES the foods and healthy snacks he gets.
6 Dog Diet Do’s And Don’ts
1. Sensibly treating your dog: Although dogs do anything for a treat it is so easy to overfeed them high fat treats. Look out for healthy, low fat alternatives. My dog loves a chunk of carrot or cauliflower as a little snack. I often carry a little bit of his kibble in my pockets when we go on a dog walk to help Teddy with his recall. Remember to swap out their treats for an equivalent portion of the day’s food.
2. Avoid giving human foods to your dog: Some foods that us humans LOVE can be extremely harmful to our pet pooches. Please don’t feed them grapes, raisons, onions and chocolate, as these are all highly toxic to dogs. Other foods like avocado, sweetcorn, beer, artificial sweeter, nuts are also harmful…the list goes on and on. If in doubt, check with your vet. Try not to leave your plates or food within easy reach of your dog (easier said than done, I know!).
3. Seek out dog-friendly foods: Saying all this – you can treat your dogs occasionally with small amounts (no more than 10% of their daily food allowance) of human foods. Healthy snacks, such as lean meat or fish, are suitable. Teddy loves prawns, cod, mackerel, salmon – basically anything fishy! I just make sure I check for small bones before it ends up in his dog bowl.
4. Overfeeding and how to avoid: The dietary needs of your dog will vary depending on their size, breed and the type of food. On the packet of dog food there will be guidance on the right amount to give your dog. If in doubt, always consult your vet – who can advise on your dog’s exact needs.
5. Make safe changes to your dog diet: Routine is key to maintaining your dog’s digestive health. All changes to their diet should therefore be made gradually and with the advice of a vet. With Teddy, I was used to feed him at night so he was eating, and then going to bed. Instead, I now feed him in the morning so he has a full tummy for the start of the day. He is much happier too and sleeps better as well.
6. Discover how often to feed your dog: The frequency you feed your dog will change throughout their life. They’ll need more smaller meals per day as a growing puppy than as an elderly dog. I used to feed Teddy twice a day. Now he gets one meal a day and as a result he is a much healthier weight.
After making some small changes to Teddy’s diet, he is so much happier. And so am I. If you are looking to get your pooch into shape, then you can find more helpful dog diet advice on the James Wellbeloved website.
This post is in collaboration with James Wellbeloved but all thoughts and opinions are my own