The Healthy Dog Diet Plan
By Patricia Bulzan
â€ Heaven goes by favor. If it went by merit, you would stay out and your dog would go inâ€. â€“ Mark Twain –
A healthy dog is a happy dog. We dog â€œownersâ€ are almost solely responsible for our dogâ€™s eating habits. Of course Fido wants those left over doughnuts, but by NOT feeding them to your dog, you have done her a great favor. Dogs want whatever we eat. Some are more obsessed about food than others, but most will eat people food. Weâ€™ll start with the basics, quality dog food. Feeding a quality dog food, with some quality dog treats, keeps them in shape and extends their lives. My dogs believe they NEED to eat every time they come in from outside. During the warmer months this isnâ€™t a problem as theyâ€™re outside most of the day. The winter months pose a great risk of them getting fat. Yes, the fat word. For a dog, even a few extra pounds makes them fat. Keeping the weight off is crucial to your dogâ€™s health.
If you can â€œpinch and inchâ€, or canâ€™t feel his ribs, then your dog is overweight. There should be a loose covering of fat and muscle over your dogâ€™s ribs and spine. If your dog is fat, start with a commercial weight-loss diet higher in protein and fiber, and lower in carbohydrates and fat. Any additional weight puts incredible strain on joints.
STOP giving all table scraps and treats, and switch to low calorie ones, or even vegetables. Control the feedings. Feed twice a day. Free fed pets are often overweight.
Lastly, make sure your dog gets enough exercise. Obese dogs will move slower and may need encouragement to get moving. Dogs are made to run all day, not spend their days inside eating human food. If you canâ€™t let your dog run free, commit to walking her twice a day for at least 30 minutes each time. If you can make it aerobic by jogging or bike riding, thatâ€™s even better. If this wonâ€™t work for you, consider hiring a dog walking service in your area.
If you really want your dog to lose weight, and see dramatic results, feed a high quality, calorie reduced, or elevated fiber diet. Increasing his exercise is important. Remember, itâ€™s not a favor giving your dog high calorie human food, even though heâ€™ll have you believe he really needs it.
Instead of commercial food, you can prepare a homemade diet like the one included here.
Natural Homemade Dog Weight Loss Diet
Macaroni 2 cups
Carrots 2 cups
Chicken (no skin) 1/3 lb
One a day vitamin 1 tablet
Calcium Carbonate (Tums) 1 tsp or 1 tablet
Ground Flax Seed 4 tsp
Cook all ingredients and mix together to produce a mash. The average 20 lb dog should get 2 cups per day.
Your dog will live longer and be happier if kept at a healthy weight, so get started now.
â€œTo his dog, every man is Napoleon; hence the constant popularity of dogsâ€. â€“ Aldous Huxley –
Patricia Bulzan publishes a newsletter and web page that teaches people how to care for their dogs at home. Do it yourself knowledge enables people to rescue more dogs by reducing the cost of owning them. Visit diydogs.com for more information.
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