In 1985 Professor Wolter of the Alfort National School of Veterinary Medicine, France came up with what he called the “ten commandments” to feeding your dogs.
1. Ensure there is always plenty of water to drink
Water should always be available for your dog throughout the day. Always make sure when it’s feeding time that the dog has clean fresh water available. Water should always be clean and fresh and readily available especially on hot days.
2. Change the food gradually
This subject has been covered many times. When changing a dog’s food it should be done over a period of time so not to upset the dog’s stomach. By doing the change this way the dog will adjust to the new food over a small amount of time.
3. Feed regularly.
Dogs love routine and being fed their dog food at roughly the same time every day would suit them the best. Also using the same dog bowls and if you can keep the feeding to one area, such as a place in the kitchen so they know that’s where they go to eat. The number of meals per day is up to you and the dog, the most recommended is to feed twice a day. Once at breakfast and once again at tea time.
4. Control the amount of food consumed.
Portion control is critical. If you have a dog that hasn’t exercised that day you would then need to reduce the amount of food so that the dog doesn’t gain weight. If you have been out all day on a long hike then you could look at increasing the food slightly.
5. Give the dog a balanced diet
Whether the food is homemade or commercial, you need to ensure the dog is getting all the nutrients they need. A good quality dog food will do that. Named brands such as NatureDiet, James Wellbeloved and Hills Science plan are all good named brands.
6. Choose the food carefully
Look at the packaging and what the food contains. You wouldn’t feed child lots of e-number, colours and preservatives as it would send they hyperactive. This can be the same for dogs. Look for a balanced diet with a protein level of around 20%.
7. Use the food properly.
Make sure your dog has a good balanced diet and doesn’t have the option to pick and choose his food. This happens when you feed the dog and then eat at the same time. The dog comes to see what you are eating as the smells will probably be stronger than his own food. You then think he doesn’t want his food and feed him scraps off the plate. If you don’t feed them scraps, they will eat their own food which is far healthier for them.
8. Cleanliness is next to godliness. . .
Always make sure that any tinned dog food is kept fresh if not all used in one feeding and always makes sure that the dog bowl and water bowl are kept clean.
9. Keep track of individual results
Even though you dog can be eating his food and seem to enjoy it doesn’t mean you cannot occur problems. Keep an eye on their weight, teeth and coat. This will give you indications if there is a problem. If you dog is loosing weight but is still eating the same amount then you would have to get this checked with a vet.
10. Do not hesitate to contact your vet
By watching what you feed your dog and what it eats you are more likely to see any issues. If the dog doesn’t eat etc you will be ready to get your dog checked out by the vet.
Karren Newton works for Swell Pet. Swell Pets.co.uk is one of the UK's leading retailers of pet supplies, including dog food including Eukanuba dog food and James Wellbeloved .