At first, it may seem that feeding dogs is the simplest because you just have to put the feed in its feeder and that’s it. However, canine feeding has to be guided by guidelines that are not always followed and that, on occasions, can have bad consequences for the pet. Some of the most common are:
Mistakes in feeding dogs
FEED HIM ONCE A DAY
There are people who consider that feeding their dog once a day is enough. The needs of pets are not always the same and, while some dogs only need a single meal a day, most of them will need 2 or 3 throughout the day. Of course, it should not be the same amount of food that is given to the dog that only eats once as the one that does it a couple of times, since the rations must be distributed proportionally. An error in this aspect can cause the pet to develop problems when it comes to correctly assimilating nutrients or intestinal and gastric conditions.
NOT CORRECTLY CALCULATING SERVINGS
The amount of food a dog should be given is directly related to its size, weight, and daily physical activity. A chihuahua who is at home most of the time does not have the same need as a German shepherd who spends the day running in a garden. A great help is the indications that usually come in the bags of feed, where the amount in grams that a dog should consume per day is stated depending on its characteristics. And is that a dog that eats more than normal can end up becoming overweight.
CHANGE THEIR FOOD REGULARLY
Dogs tend to have a very delicate digestive system, so the slightest change of food can be a problem. For this reason, it is recommended that the pet always consume the same brand of feed or wet food. In case of having to make a change, then it will be necessary to mix it with the previous food, decreasing more and more the amount of it until only the new feed remains.
NOT KEEPING FOOD IN THE BEST CONDITION
The feed bag should always be kept closed and in a cool and dry place, while wet food should be kept in the fridge. And is that sometimes the owners do not pay too much attention when it comes to storing their pets’ food and leave it anywhere they can end up rotting or developing bacteria.
LEAVE LEFTOVERS IN THE FEEDER
When a dog does not finish its ration, the plate must be removed. One of the reasons is that, as indicated in the previous point, the food cannot be out in the open, developing bacteria and filling with dust, as the dog will probably eat it even when it is in poor condition.
NOT LOOKING AT EXPIRATION DATES
Feed tends to last longer, but wet food should be consumed more quickly before its expiration date has passed. And it is that as much as you may think that nothing happens if the dog eats it once it has expired, the truth is that it can have consequences for your health. And keeping the expiration date in mind is also related to the amount of food that is bought for the dog. Going to get the bag of feed and realizing that it is practically empty can be a headache, which is why many people choose to store several bags. However, this can be a mistake if it is a small dog that does not eat too much, as they feed or food containers will end up expiring and it will be wasted money.
DO NOT WASH THE FEEDER
In the same way that dishes are put in the dishwasher or washed after eating, the dog’s feeder must also be washed. The remains that accumulate will end up rotting and, if a new food is thrown on it, the dog will end up eating it. Your feeder must be scrubbed at least once a day with a little detergent and warm water. In addition, when choosing the type of trough, metal ones are usually recommended more than ceramic ones – since bacteria proliferate better in them as they are more porous – or plastic ones – which usually end up being nibbled.
ADD HOMEMADE FOOD TO FEED
This is usually one of the most common mistakes, especially when the dog does not show much interest in eating and the leftovers are added to give it a little incentive. This is a mistake in several respects. On the one hand, dogs should not eat human food on a regular basis as it is too fatty for them. In addition, many dogs will set aside the feed and eat only the leftovers, so the expected result will not be achieved. Finally, when a dog gets used to the fact that the feed is accompanied by remains of food or a portion of wet feed, it will no longer accept the feed alone.