nutrition

The marvels of gravy food

Unless properly formulated by a nutritionist, diets made at home are not likely to be nutritionally complete and balanced. For this purpose specially manufactured gravy foods match the feeling of home-prepared food with four potential advantages – nutritional, physiological, emotional and behavioural.

In the emerging markets where commercial petfood penetration is very low (e.g. in India), feeding nutritionhome-prepared diets is so prevalent because of a variety of factors, including: cultural attitudes, owner compliance, economics and low awareness on prepared pet foods. Pedigree

Today the domestic dog has become elevated to near family-member status. Concurrent advances in the knowledge of canine nutrient requirements (NRC, 2006) have resulted in sophisticated, balanced and nutritionally complete prepared diets for dogs. Prepared diets offer advantages in terms of convenience, cost and nutritional content, and in many countries, the majority of pets are fed these diets.

Research states

Introduction of commercial pet foods from reputed manufacturers in the 1950’s has been associated with increased health and longevity throughout the pet population (Watson, 1997). A preliminary study in India suggested that the incidence of disease was lower, and survivability of pups higher, in those dogs maintained for a year on a commercial diet compared to home-prepared diets (Abdul Rahman and Yathiraj, 2001).

None of the home-prepared diets fed to dogs in India were adequate in meeting recommended nutritional requirements and all diets were deficient in at least four essential nutrients (potassium, vitamin E, vitamin D and calcium).

Nutrient deficiency causes classic diseases that can be severely debilitating or in some cases rapidly fatal. Besides, there are questions regarding digestibility, safety and palatability of home-prepared diets. Homemade diets may also contain contaminants and food-borne microbes if the pet parent is not careful.

The customised gravy food thus ensures health and happiness by providing key nutrients which are essential for the dog’s overall well being.

Advantages of specially manufactured gravy food

  • It offers more of a feeding experience for the pet parents as they feel good about having to prepare the food for the dog.
  • It is more like real food, same mouth feel, looks like human food. It allows a greater variety of feeding behaviour, in terms of flavours, textures and formats.
  • It contains high quality proteins and dietary fibre, which aids digestion and ensures your dogs absorb all nutrients from his food. One can see the result in smaller and firmer stools.
  • It provides all the key nutrients needed to meet the daily needs of a dog with the quantity of energy required to sustain his body condition and health.
  • It offers potentially reduced risk of overfeeding as the amount of wet food looks substantial and more satiating.
  • It can be warmed up on a cold day or if the dog is ill or simply just for a change.
  • It has all advantages of dry and wet food – good oral health, palatable and water. Dogs lose water through panting and central heating may also have an impact on water loss. A healthy water intake is good for the skin, cells and urinary tract, including kidneys.
  • WCPN has showed that when water is added to dry food (amount of water added is similar to the amount of water found in home food), the risk of stone formation is reduced in small dogs, urine volume is increased and it is also good for urinary tract health.
  • It can help to keep dog hydrated, especially during the summer or in hot climates, or if the dog doesn’t drink enough water.
  • It contains comparatively reduced calorie levels and can help to maintain a normal healthy weight.
  • It may encourage the dog to eat other food as well, i.e. if the dog does not take to dry food, you can add Pedigree Gravy to encourage the dog to eat the dry dog food.
  • Gravy food may encourage the dog to eat more slowly.
  • It provides more choices for the dog – he can pick the kibbles out.
  • It is cheaper and also balanced. For example, the cost of feeding a 20 kg dog per day is Rs 70 for Pedigree Gravy and Rs 92 for home prepared diet (non-veg).

Pawfect dietary care for mother & puppies

The arrival of a litter of puppies is always an exciting experience and to make everything go well, you can rely on your vet’s experience and ‘Birth & Growth’ programme from Royal Canin.

You need to provide the mother, and the litter she is carrying, with a range of nutrients essential for development. They must be found in her diet, otherwise your female dog’s body will draw on its own reserves. Two-thirds of the way through gestation, at around 6-7 weeks, is when foetal development really begins, because this is when they gain weight, increase in size and their skeletons harden. Both the mother and puppies’ needs increase and she can gain around 25 percent of her weight in the week before delivery.

Taking care of the mother

From the 6th week of pregnancy, the mother’s energy, protein and mineral requirements are significantly inline with her puppies’ rapid growth and in preparation for lactation. A very rich, highly digestible, easy to rehydrate and very palatable food meets the needs of the mother and her little ones perfectly right up until weaning. Starter Mini, Medium, Maxi or Giant, according to the mother’s ideal adult weight, fits the bill! Once the puppies are born, they will feed every 3 hours; lactation is an incredibly demanding time for mothers, and her energy needs multiply 3 times in order to produce her very rich milk and rebuild her bodily reserves. Let her eat as much Starter as she likes, always with a bowl of fresh water alongside. She will also need to escape from time to time to stretch her legs – this is a good opportunity to make sure she is in good form and not losing weight.

Weaning made easy

Gradually, driven by curiosity, the puppies will taste their mother’s food, and wean themselves by imitating her. Starter food is easy to hydrate with a little warm water or a special dog milk (Babydog milk) – little by little, from 3 weeks of age to around 7 or 8 weeks, this will be the ideal transition from mother’s milk. With all the nutritional qualities your puppies need, and very palatable, it is also ultra-digestible and meets this very high needs for energy, fats, proteins, vitamins, essential fatty acids, and carefully controlled amounts of minerals and starch. The size of the kibble is specially adapted to the size of the puppies’ jaws, making it easy for them to eat.

Growing up safely

Depending on the puppy’s size or breed, growth is quicker or slower and takes place in successive stages. The Junior Breed Health Nutrition provides him with everything he needs – concentrated energy and digestive security, which help him grow harmoniously and reinforce his own natural defences while taking the specificities of his breed into account.

Dog professionals have chosen Royal Canin for over 40 years. Dogs – and cats – are at the heart of every Royal Canin innovation, because new foods are made for them and them alone, taking account of their real needs, based on proven scientific facts.

nutrition

Royal Canin’s nutritional diet for urinary disorders

Cystitis and bladder stones are two of the most common urinary diseases and lead to various clinical signs that are sometimes poorly understood by the owner. The main role of urine is to eliminate body wastes and toxic products that accumulate in the bloodstream. It also plays a role in maintaining the body’s equilibrium by regulating the quantities of water and minerals that are excreted.

Produced in the kidneys where nephrons carry out blood filtration, urine passes through both ureters to the urinary. It is released to the outside via the urethra when the pet feels the need to urinate.

How can I detect a urinary disorder in my pet?

The clinical signs of urinary disorders are various and sometimes subtle. Irrespective of their intensity, they always indicate discomfort or pain.

Your pet may show one or more of the following signs:

  • urinates more often and passes small quantities, or fails to urinate
  • licks the genital area frequently
  • crouches longer in the urinating position
  • strains or shows signs of pain while urinating
  • pinkish urine, indicative of the presence of blood
  • loss of appetite
  • behavioural changes

Does a urinary disorder necessarily mean a urinary stone?

NO. Low Urinary Tract Disease (LUTD) may have various causes and there are also some differences between cats and dogs. In fact it may be caused by:

  • cystitis (bladder inflammation) of infectious origin
  • urinary crystals/stones: these aggregates mostly form in the urinary bladder of pets.
  • neoplasm (tumour)
  • behavioural disorder etc.

To make his/her diagnosis, your veterinarian may suggest performing further examinations such as urinalysis to determine the urine pH, detect the presence of inflammatory cells, blood or protein…

What is a urinary stone?

These crystals occur when urine is saturated in minerals, either because the pet’s metabolism is abnormal or because his diet makes the urinary environment favourable to crystal formation. Urinary stones consist of aggregates of urinary crystals that are present in the bladder. They can be of four types: struvite stones (very common), calcium oxalate stones (most common), ammonium urate stones (much less frequent) and cystine stones (rare).

These stones may vary in size, be alone or associated with other stones, be of one type or mixed. Identification of the stone is very important in planning the most appropriate treatment.

What are the factors that promote stone formation?

As a general rule, the factors involved in stone formation are:

  • the degree of urine acidity (pH)
  • urinary concentrations of minerals
  • infectious cystitis

Small breeds such as Bichon Frise, Miniature Schnauzer, Poodle, Shih Tzu and Yorkshire Terrier are known to be more prone to developing urinary stones. Dalmatians have a higher risk of ammonium urate stones due to a metabolic abnormality leading to excessive urinary excretion of urate. In general, male dogs are more affected by urinary calculi than female dogs (except for struvite calculi).

What is the treatment for urinary stones?

Treatment may consist of the administration of antibacterial agents to fight against a possible bladder infection, anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce inflammation of the urinary tract, or urinary pH modifiers.

Nutritional treatment

Some calculi, such as struvite, can be dissolved by a specific diet, such as Royal Canin. This diet is higher in sodium (in proportions safe for the pet’s health), resulting in increased water intake and therefore urine dilution. Moreover, this diet is specifically designed to reduce the urinary concentrations of minerals (magnesium, phosphorus) and urea, and to acidify urine.

Ammonium urate and cystine stones can also be dissolved. Dissolution requires a diet that alkalinises urine. Royal Canin diet is particularly indicated.

Other stones, like calcium oxalate, cannot be dissolved. Therefore they need to be removed by your veterinarian, under general anaesthesia.

What can I do to prevent stone recurrence?

  • If your pet has already had urinary crystals/stones: do not change his diet before consulting your veterinarian, even if he seems to be cured.
  • Do not withdraw the medical treatment prescribed by your veterinarian before the end of the treatment period. If you encounter difficulties in administering drugs to your pet, consult your veterinarian: he/she will give you some advice and may adjust the prescription. Your pet may seem to be completely normal even though crystals are forming again.
  • Ideally, divide your pet’s daily feeding amount into several small meals: this minimises fluctuations in urine pH.
  • Make sure that your pet has fresh and clean water available at all times.
  • Ensure that your pet does not have to wait to urinate. When your pet holds on, it concentrates its urine as well as the minerals that are contained in urine. Remember to take your dog out often.
nutrition

Antioxidants: key to a healthy immune system

At birth, the puppy’s immune system is not fully developed. Rather, it matures during the first few months of life. The immune system is important for protecting puppies from disease and infection. A mature immune system is necessary for an effective response to vaccination. The immune system can be divided into two major components:

Cell-mediated Immunity: Cells (T- and B-lymphocytes and macrophages) that recognise foreign agents (antigens) and initiate a rapid defense.

Humoral Immunity: Antibodies that circulate throughout the body binding to and thereby neutralising—toxins and microorganisms.

What are antioxidants?

Antioxidants are important, naturally occurring nutrients that help maintain health by slowing the destructive aging process of cellular molecules. They can also be important in improving immune responses and vaccine recognition in dogs and cats. They can reverse decreases in immune-cell function for senior dogs and cats. A blend of several antioxidants in moderate amounts may be more effective than high levels of one antioxidant. Antioxidants are nutrients found naturally in the body and in plants such as fruits and vegetables.

Why do puppies need antioxidants?nutrition

Antioxidants, such as vitamin E, beta-carotene, and lutein, have been shown to boost both cell-mediated and humoral immune function in dogs. Lutein and beta-carotene have also been shown to optimise vaccine antigen recognition, an effect that is very important for puppies undergoing their initial vaccination series.

The study: A group of 40, six-week-old puppies were randomly allotted into two subgroups. For 120 days, puppies were fed either a control puppy diet or the same diet formulated with added vitamin E, beta-carotene, and lutein. During the study, all the puppies received their normal vaccinations. At the end of the 120-day feeding period, all the puppies were vaccinated against distemper and parvovirus, and antibody responses were measured. Following that, all the puppies received an injection of a novel antigen and the antibody responses were measured.

Findings: Compared with puppies fed the control diet, puppies fed the diet with the antioxidant combination had enhanced responses to vaccination (see chart below). There were more antibodies present following injection with a novel antigen, indicating that the immune systems of puppies fed antioxidants may be better able to respond to challenges from infectious agents. There was greater cell-mediated immune response, indicating that feeding antioxidants to puppies increases both T- and B-cell activity.

How antioxidants work?

As cells function normally in the body, they produce damaged molecules—called free radicals. These free radicals are highly unstable and steal components from other cellular molecules, such as fat, protein, or DNA, thereby spreading the damage. This damage continues in a chain reaction, and entire cells soon become damaged and die. This process is called peroxidation.

Peroxidation is useful because it helps the body destroy cells that have outlived their usefulness and kills germs and parasites. However, peroxidation, when left unchecked, also destroys or damages healthy cells. Antioxidants help prevent widespread cellular destruction by willingly donating components to stabilise free radicals. More importantly, antioxidants return to the surface of the cell to stabilise rather than damage other cellular components. When there are not enough antioxidants to hold peroxidation in check, free radicals begin damaging healthy cells, which, in turn, can lead to problems. For example, free radical damage to immune cells can lead to an increased risk of infections.

Because antioxidants play a key role in minimizing damage to cells, their addition to high-quality puppy diet can help maintain good health and protect against viruses, bacteria and parasites.

Antioxidants and aging

Recent research also examined the effect of aging on immune responses. The findings indicate that as dogs and cats age, immune cell responses may decline. Including antioxidants in the diet can reverse the age related decrease in immune cell function.

The solution

All Eukanuba and IAMS dog and cat foods and Eukanuba Veterinary Diets contain added antioxidants to help support a healthy immune system.

Royal Canin’s nutritional diet for urinary disorders

Cystitis and bladder stones are two of the most common urinary diseases and lead to various clinical signs that are sometimes poorly understood by the owner. The main role of urine is to eliminate body wastes and toxic products that accumulate in the bloodstream. It also plays a role in maintaining the body’s equilibrium by regulating the quantities of water and minerals that are excreted.

Produced in the kidneys where nephrons carry out blood filtration, urine passes through both ureters to the urinary. It is released to the outside via the urethra when the pet feels the need to urinate.

How can I detect a urinary disorder in my pet?

The clinical signs of urinary disorders are various and sometimes subtle. Irrespective of their intensity, they always indicate discomfort or pain.

Your pet may show one or more of the following signs:

  • urinates more often and passes small quantities, or fails to urinate
  • licks the genital area frequently
  • crouches longer in the urinating position
  • strains or shows signs of pain while urinating
  • pinkish urine, indicative of the presence of blood
  • loss of appetite
  • behavioural changes

Does a urinary disorder necessarily mean a urinary stone?

NO. Low Urinary Tract Disease (LUTD) may have various causes and there are also some differences between cats and dogs. In fact it may be caused by:

  • cystitis (bladder inflammation) of infectious origin
  • urinary crystals/stones: these aggregates mostly form in the urinary bladder of pets.
  • neoplasm (tumour)
  • behavioural disorder etc.

To make his/her diagnosis, your veterinarian may suggest performing further examinations such as urinalysis to determine the urine pH, detect the presence of inflammatory cells, blood or protein…

What is a urinary stone?

These crystals occur when urine is saturated in minerals, either because the pet’s metabolism is abnormal or because his diet makes the urinary environment favourable to crystal formation. Urinary stones consist of aggregates of urinary crystals that are present in the bladder. They can be of four types: struvite stones (very common), calcium oxalate stones (most common), ammonium urate stones (much less frequent) and cystine stones (rare).

These stones may vary in size, be alone or associated with other stones, be of one type or mixed. Identification of the stone is very important in planning the most appropriate treatment.

What are the factors that promote stone formation?

As a general rule, the factors involved in stone formation are:

  • the degree of urine acidity (pH)
  • urinary concentrations of minerals
  • infectious cystitis

Small breeds such as Bichon Frise, Miniature Schnauzer, Poodle, Shih Tzu and Yorkshire Terrier are known to be more prone to developing urinary stones. Dalmatians have a higher risk of ammonium urate stones due to a metabolic abnormality leading to excessive urinary excretion of urate. In general, male dogs are more affected by urinary calculi than female dogs (except for struvite calculi).

What is the treatment for urinary stones?

Treatment may consist of the administration of antibacterial agents to fight against a possible bladder infection, anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce inflammation of the urinary tract, or urinary pH modifiers.

Nutritional treatment

Some calculi, such as struvite, can be dissolved by a specific diet, such as Royal Canin. This diet is higher in sodium (in proportions safe for the pet’s health), resulting in increased water intake and therefore urine dilution. Moreover, this diet is specifically designed to reduce the urinary concentrations of minerals (magnesium, phosphorus) and urea, and to acidify urine.

Ammonium urate and cystine stones can also be dissolved. Dissolution requires a diet that alkalinises urine. Royal Canin diet is particularly indicated.

Other stones, like calcium oxalate, cannot be dissolved. Therefore they need to be removed by your veterinarian, under general anaesthesia.

What can I do to prevent stone recurrence?

  • If your pet has already had urinary crystals/stones: do not change his diet before consulting your veterinarian, even if he seems to be cured.
  • Do not withdraw the medical treatment prescribed by your veterinarian before the end of the treatment period. If you encounter difficulties in administering drugs to your pet, consult your veterinarian: he/she will give you some advice and may adjust the prescription. Your pet may seem to be completely normal even though crystals are forming again.
  • Ideally, divide your pet’s daily feeding amount into several small meals: this minimises fluctuations in urine pH.
  • Make sure that your pet has fresh and clean water available at all times.
  • Ensure that your pet does not have to wait to urinate. When your pet holds on, it concentrates its urine as well as the minerals that are contained in urine. Remember to take your dog out often.
nutrition

Happy Meals !

Ever so often we can observe a dog day dreaming about his next meal? Head on paws, eyes wistful and tongue lolling… the picture is hard to ignore. But be warned, dogs don’t dream about the same food that we do. They don’t wish for tubs of ice-cream or bars of chocolate. Dogs need healthy nutritious meals that suit their metabolism. Feeding behaviour

Dogs are carnivorous by nature, although they do show considerable flexibility in their diet and in the wild they may also eat plant materials, such as grass and berries. Although the means by which domestic dogs obtain their food is rather different from their wild ancestors, the underlying behavioural mechanism on which food selection is based may still be intact, if somewhat modified by the process of domestication.

Although some dogs appear to be largely indiscriminate in their choice of food, others, especially dogs of the smallest and the largest breeds, can be selective feeders. Dogs prefer a meat to a cereal-based diet although they may prefer one type, such as beef, over another. They enjoy a wide range of tastes and are often partial to sweet foods, as well as foods with a salty or sharp taste. The smell of the food is also important and has a considerable effect on its palatability.

Most dogs will quite happily eat the same type of food every day. This is perfectly reasonable provided that it is a balanced diet and contains all the essential nutrients. However, many dogs enjoy some variety in their diet, although unfamiliar foods may be rejected at first or can result in a bout of diarrhoea. An alternative variety of their usual brand is the best option. Although in the wild, it is common for several days to elapse between meals, most dogs would prefer to receive their food ration in more than one meal per day. Whatever regime you follow, problems may be avoided if you match your dog’s total food consumption to his energy requirement and, of course, ensure that the overall diet is nutritionally complete and balanced.

Most dogs will tend to overeat, if allowed unlimited access to food, although there is considerable variation between breeds and between individuals. This may be related to the tendency to gorge-feed in the wild, when they may have to last several days between kills. They are protective about their food and will even fend off more dominant individuals while eating. In the home, your dog must be trained from an early age to relinquish his food to you, if requested. However, children should be taught not to approach a dog who is eating or chewing a bone.

Home food vs prepared food

While your dog may be a lot like you in many ways, he doesn’t need the same food that you do. Home cooked meals may leave a dog with nutritional deficiencies. Such a meal may also not keep abreast with life-stage requirements. For example, puppies not only need significantly more protein than adult dogs and babies (approximately six times each day) but also require highly digestible proteins and energy dense food for optimum growth.

12 ways to face a fussy eater

A fuss over meals once in a while is quite okay. There are a number of reasons for a pet to turn up his nose at his bowl. Sometimes a fear of new food, a bad experience with the food or poor palatability may cause the fuss. At other times, a dog may fuss when he has consumed more energy than required. Small breeds in general are fussy eaters. Make sure that you are not over feeding your dog and monitor his body weight regularly. If your dog continues to kick up a fuss at meal times, follow these steps:

  • Offer a small amount of your dog’s normal food.
  • Put it down for a maximum of 20 minutes and leave the dog alone.
  • If the food is not eaten within 20 minutes, pick the food up and let the dog see you throw it away.
  • Do not talk or fuss over the dog, just ignore him. This is really important.
  • If you do make a fuss over your dog at this stage, he will start associating not eating with getting attention.
  • Do not offer any snacks or tit bits
  • A couple of hours later, repeat these steps, don’t give him any attention or alternatives.
  • Keep repeating this process every couple of hours throughout the day.
  • If by the bedtime, your dog still hasn’t eaten, let him go to bed on an empty stomach, no sympathy.
  • The following morning, repeat the same steps.
  • By the end of the second day, he will probably be hungry and when you offer the food, he should eat it.
  • Don’t forget to show your appreciation to your dog when he does eat.

If your dog continues to refuse food, contact your vet.

nutrition

Towards trouble-free weaning

Weaning is a dramatic period for puppies. It is probably the most demanding few days in the first six months of their rapid development. They need to go from a 100 percent liquid diet (mother’s milk at 77 percent moisture) onto a 100 percent solid diet (at 8 percent moisture). Eukanuba offers Puppy Small Breed, which makes weaning easier for the lil one.

 

Why do you need a weaning product?

The transition phase of weaning occurs while the puppies are undergoing tremendous growth as their organs nutritiondevelop. The weaning needs to be as smooth as possible, especially on the gastrointestinal system which is undergoing dramatic changes. If a puppy develops diarrhoea in the weaning period, the fluid loss in the stool is potentially very harmful, even life threatening, so weaning is a critical period.

What changes take place during the weaning period to puppies?
The exact age when puppies are weaned will be determined by the breeder. Internationally, breeders start at 6-7 weeks of age, with weaning being completed by 8-9 weeks.

If early weaning is chosen, then puppies can start to eat a soft gruel (porridge consistency) from 3-4 weeks and this coincides with the eruption of their deciduous teeth (+21 to 35d). By 5 weeks of age they can take semi-solid food and at 6 weeks of age they can take solid food with weaning being complete by 7 weeks. However, some breeders may want to extend the weaning period for longer.

At the time of weaning there are many changes happening. The composition of mother’s milk changes during the lactation period with protein levels staying fairly constant over seven weeks while fat levels will initially increase over the first two weeks and then drop off after six weeks. Other changes include:

  • The diet goes gradually from liquid to solid during weaning.
  • They will change their gut bacteria profile as they mature and develop the adult ‘ecosystem’.
  • Enzymes are developing to digest solid food.
  • Mothers’ milk is very digestible and so provides energy.
  • The protective immunity (called passive immunity) obtained from the mother’s first milk (Colostrums: this is the milk rich in mother’s antibodies that puppies must suckle in the first 24 hours after birth).

What makes Puppy Small Breed beneficial as weaning diet?

  • Protein: high quality, highly digestible animal based. Supports growth and tissue accretion. Puppy Small Breed has 32 percent protein dry matter and mother’s milk has 26-33 percent dry matter, so it’s at an ideal transition level.
  • Fat: high quality, highly digestible at 21 percent dry matter. Mother’s milk is 22-42 percent dry matter. The moderate fat levels will ensure smooth transition as the digestive system of the puppy starts to develop enzymes needed to digest fat.
  • High quality, highly digestible carbohydrates.
  • Beet pulp for gut health.
  • Highly digestible nutritional matrix.

At what age should you use Puppy Small Breed as weaning diet?

Packaging guidelines show from six weeks onwards, but it can be used from 3-4 weeks of age if the breeder decides to wean at this age. Please see table :

How do you feed Puppy Small Breed as weaning diet?

Do not use Cow’s milk or any other species’ milk as their composition is not suitable to feed puppies. The mother is also able to eat Puppy Small Breed if she wishes.

Puppies should be allowed access to the Puppy Small Breed gruel for 30-60 minutes three times a day. Mix it with warm water in the proportions indicated in the table above.

If your puppy is three weeks old, mix one part Puppy Small Breed with three parts warm water. If your puppy is four weeks old, mix one part Puppy Small Breed with two parts warm water. If your puppy is of five weeks or older mix one part Puppy Small Breed with one part warm water. These guidelines amounts are a starting point and your puppy may need more food depending on age, size activity and temperament. Do not allow the gruel to remain with the puppies for more than one hour. Clean, fresh water must be available at all times. Gradually, incorporate Eukanuba puppy food Kibbles in the gruel at 5-6 weeks of age and remove the milk replacer to allow complete transition to Eukanuba puppy food by 6-8 weeks of age.

In order to reach optimal body condition, you may need to adjust food intake. This represents the total recommended volume of feeding amount by the number of times you feed your dog per day to get the actual portion size per feeding.

How long can you feed Puppy Small Breed as weaning diet?

The weaning period should be fully over within 21-28 days and puppies can transition from the Puppy Small Breed onto their Eukanuba breed size puppy nutrition.

What about puppies with loose stools?

For puppies with occasional loose stools, you can feed the Puppy Small Breed. If the loose stools persist then, consult a vet. Poor stool quality in young dogs can be caused by dietary indiscretion, parasitic and viral disease and therefore a vet needs to be involved if the problem does not get better within a few days.

What about weaning large/giant breeds?

Puppy Small Breed does have relatively high calcium at 1.2 percent. As Puppy Small Breed will be mainly fed for a short time then we do not think this is such a critical issue for large/giant breeds when used for weaning. Its lower energy at 4007 KCal/kg will aid with controlled growth in these breeds.

nutrition

Guide to health, nutition and feeding…

Traditional concept of nutrition, i.e. developing, sustaining and providing energy to the body, now has a preventive and, in certain conditions, a curative dimension. This new dimension marks the birth of health/nutrition. Read more about the objectives of Nutrition and the Commandments for feeding your pooch, just the right way.
Nutrition aids in body development and maintenance, provides energy, contributes in prevention (renal infections or digestive disorders), helps in curing (certain nutrients added to food, support the therapeutic or convalescence process).

Foodie facts…

  • It is estimated that the life expectancy of dogs, for instance, has increased by three years in the last fifteen years.
  • Scientists and the major pet food manufacturers now acknowledge that dogs should be fed differently depending on whether they are puppies, full-grown or old, and on whether their size is small, medium, large or giant!
  • The size and shape of a carnivore’s organs are very different from ours. Even nearly 10,000 years of domestication have not changed these carnivores (our pooches) into omnivores!
  • Making a balanced food is like making a complex jigsaw including about 50 pieces, each piece containing a nutrient indispensable to the animal, all the ingredients being formulated in adequate proportions and complementing one another to contribute to a small or larger piece of the jigsaw.Cheap foods only contain 15 nutrients.

 

 

nutrition

Pawfect nutrient mix for your pooch

Everyone desires of a well built, healthy and good looking dog. The primary requirement to achieve this is good nutrition. Often the nutritional demands of dogs are explained in a very complicated way, making things difficult to understand. Through this article an attempt is being made to simplify the subject of dog nutrition so that pet parents can make a right regimen of food to keep their dogs healthy and happy.

Let us understand what are the nutritional requirements to keep a dog healthy.

Important nutrients in dog’s diet

Nutrient Function
Protein Protein has many functions in the body, but is best known for supplying amino acids to build hair, skin, nails, muscles, tendons, ligaments and cartilage
Carbohydrates Carbohydrate is the source of energy required for various functions of the body
Fats Fats also provide energy. Fats are important for maintaining skin and coat condition, supports healthy brain cells, helps absorption of fat soluble vitamins
Minerals Calcium and Phosphorus are required for bone development. Minerals are required for various metabolic and physiological functions
Vitamins Vitamins are required for metabolic functions, skin and coat health, enzymatic functions and oxidative processes.
Water Water forms liquid medium required for all the body functions. Water functions as a solvent that facilitates cellular reactions and as a transport medium for nutrients. Water maintains body temperature.

 

Nutrient sources

Protein: Various non-vegetarian and vegetarian sources are available and can be chosen as per convenience.

nutrition

Angel and Chubby

Boiled meat, boiled egg, milk, curd, cottage cheese, cereals and grains can make a good choice.

Carbohydrates: Rice, wheat, oat, barley and sorghum in any form can make a good choice. A provision should be made to add fiber in diet that is important for intestinal health. Wheat flour, vegetables, beetroot are also good fiber sources.

Fats: Chicken fat, Fish, egg yolk and vegetable fats (flax seed, borage seed, evening primerose) are sources of good fats. A spoon of refined oil (sunflower, mustard) or ghee can also help.

Minerals: All the sources of protein and carbohydrates described above will also provide varied minerals. Fruits and vegetables are also good source of minerals. Milk and meat are good sources of Calcium & Phosphorous that is required by growing dogs in high amounts.

Vitamins: Vitamins can be derived from vegetables and non-vegetarian sources described above along with fruits.

Water: Fresh clean water available all the time can fulfil the water requirement

Additional supplementation of minerals, vitamins and fats, however, are recommended as per the life stage and life style. Do contact your veterinarians for the same.

Maintaining the right balance

The question often posed is how to provide a balance of all the above nutrients. However, certain general rules are to be followed for growth and maintenance phase.

Growth phase: The maximum requirement is of protein followed by the other nutrients. Carbohydrates and fats will fulfil the energy requirement. Minerals and vitamins will be required in a greater quantity during this phase. The entire requirement will be met if the listed ingredients are included in diet in a right proportion.

Maintenance phase: All the above ingredients are required in a smaller quantity since the demand of the growth is reduced.

Pet parents should focus on providing a good mix of all the nutrients.

Gap in the nutrients fed and utilized by the body

This is a common problem encountered in pet animals. Inspite of providing a good nutrition, the dog does not take shape, or suffer from various disorders like poor skin and coat condition, bony weakness, digestive disturbances etc. The nutrients fed to the dog are digested in the digestive tract by the help of several enzymes (Protease, Lipase, Amylase, etc). Due to some intrinsic factors the enzymes may not be secreted in the right concentration. This leads to improper digestion of nutrients. Not only this, at times the dog suffers from malabsorption syndrome. Even after proper digestion, the nutrients are not absorbed by the intestine because its absorptive surface is not in a healthy state. Improper digestion and absorption will lead to less bioavailability of various nutrients and the dog will lose health inspite of best nutrition. It is hence needed to assess if the dietary nutrients are being properly digested and absorbed in the body. In case of any gap in digestion and absorption, advice of a vet is a must who may recommend a change in diet, addition of extrinsic enzymes etc.

Practical tips to formulate a dog’s diet

  • Puppy diet should contain highly digestible food like cerelac, curd, porridge. Especially formulated puppy diets should be preferred during this critical stage.
  • Milk should not be given in case of lactose intolerance (such dogs suffers from diarrhoea after milk intake).
  • Not all listed ingredients are to be given in same meal but need to be divided in different meals as per the requirement of the dog.
  • The quantity of the diet will vary according to the age, body weight and activity level.
  • The food should be offered at fixed time and in a fixed place.
  • The frequency of food should be maintained as follows: Small pups – at a gap of 4-5 hours, Growing pups – 3-4 times and Adult – 1-2 times.
  • Dogshould finish the food in one go and it should not be left for long if the dog does not take it. Fresh food should be offered next time.
  • Fresh water should be made available all the times.
  • Vitamin and mineral supplements should be given as per the vet’s advice.

(Dr S K Pandey of Vamso Pet Health, India is a post graduate in Veterinary Medicine with an experience of over 20 years in pet health, nutrition and behaviour.)

Joint disorders in Dogs

Joint disorders are relatively common in dogs. Benefits of special nutrients can help manage health and joint mobility.

Nutrients a key to good health

Nutrients such as chondroitin sulphate, glucosamine; minerals such as copper, manganese and zinc protect the joint cartilage and also play a role in the repair process. The anti-inflammatory and pain relieving properties of EPA/DHA (Omega-3 fatty acids) help to ease joint complaints. A combination of antioxidants (vitamin E, vitamin C, lutein and taurine) helps protect the body against the harmful effects of free radicals. The Green Lipped Mussel (GLM) is a special mussel harvested in New Zealand. GLM is a natural source of chondroitin sulphate, EPA/DHA (Omega-3 fatty acids.) GLM also contains amino acids, vitamins (E and C) and minerals (zinc, copper and manganese).

Royal Canin offers mobility support diet nutrition

Which is a complete diet for adult and geriatric dogs. The most important characteristics are:

Green Lipped Mussel (GLM)powder obtained through an exclusive patented process. It helps maintain joint health and retain activity levels. GLM contains a number of active ingredients, all working together.

Omega-3 fatty acids – Fish oil and Green Lipped Mussels contain omega-3 fatty acids.

Antioxidants – a special combination of antioxidants (vitamin E, vitamin C, lutein and taurine) helps protect the body against the harmful effects of free radicals. They also help immunity and slow down the ageing process.

Moderate energy content helps avoid the risk of excess weight. Thus, an optimal body weight helps limit stress on joints.

The positive effects of GLM can be seen after three to six weeks. When use is discontinued, the positive effects gradually disappear within a few weeks. So, regular use is necessary to obtain optimal results.