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Free Feeding: Should Your Dog Always Have a Full Dish?

November 12, 2014

Should Your Dog Always Have A Full Food Dish?



Free feeding, as it is called, has been a staple of convenient dog care in the lives of pet owners.  Fill your pup's dish to the brim, and your conscious mind is thinking that he is happy, well fed and will never go hungry. It allows him to eat whenever his tummy growls, and you never have to worry about remembering to give him meals.  However, he not only eats when he's hungry but he also eats when he is bored. He eats when he wants to, even for fun or relieving stress. Just like with some humans, dogs overeat and quickly become obese. Is the convenience of free feeding worth your dog's health?




Free Feeding and Your Dog's Health



According to statistics by the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention over 52% of pet dogs in America are overweight or obese.  That is incredibly alarming and should be disturbing to pet owners.  Most see a fat dog as healthy and happy, but the reality is that he will most likely suffer preventable diseases such as type 2 diabetes and / or early on set arthritis and organ failure because of the excess fat in his body. Providing a constantly full food dish for your dog is literally killing him with love!



Dogs are naturally opportunistic feeders. Their wild ancestors would eat at any and every chance they got, as they never knew when the next meal would present itself.  To keep themselves energized and healthy, a wolf would both scavenge and hunt when he could.  Your dog's instincts are not that much further from his wolf ancestor, and every time there is food in a bowl he is most likely going to eat until he physically cannot do so anymore.  A plethora of health problems, and behavioral problems, will soon follow as your pet's body gets wider, heavier, and more strained to perform basic functions such as breathing, digesting, or even walking.



So, How Should I Feed My Dog?



Now that you have been warned against the dangers that come from free feeding your canine companion, you should be wondering about the healthiest and most efficient way to feed your dog.  Once you have a high quality food picked out, be it a raw diet or quality kibble you should assess your dog's age, size, and workload.  A growing dog or puppy will need more fats and proteins while a lazy senior will need slightly slower proteins and more oils.  A young adult who is very active will use a high protein with medium amounts of fats and a low key adult would use a diet more closely related to that of the senior pet.  Not only do these ingredients matter, but they should help you decide when and how much food your pet should be eating on a daily basis.



It's not as hard as it sounds!  Don't fret over making your dog's diet perfect.  You can use your dog's weight to compare to the feeding chart posted on the label of nearly every pet food manufactured.  You can also search online for a feeding schedule recommendation based on your dog's needs. If you are using a homemade or raw option, then you may find yourself struggling with the trial and error option. If your dog becomes too thin, feed him a little more per serving or more often. If he gains, then feed him a little less!


A typical rule of thumb, though, is based on a dog's age, size and energy level.  Most puppies up to about 6 months to a year old will eat three times a day. The total amount of all three meals should add up to the amount his body needs to survive and continue growing.


Growing up is hard work, and a puppy needs lots of energy to do that!  A dog from 1 year to 5 or 6 years of age may eat only twice a day. One meal in the morning and one meal in the evening will satisfy most adult dogs.  Senior dogs also greatly benefit from 2 meals instead of one big one.  It is theorized that dogs provided with only one meal a day have a higher tendency to develop a condition called bloat, which is very deadly and requires an intensive and invasive surgery. Your time spent providing smaller meals instead of 1 big one a day can really save your best friend's life!



Fresh, Portion Controlled Meals Are Best


One of the common worries of pet owners whenever they leave home is their cats and dogs. Often, pet parents also need to feed their pets even in the most inconvenient or impossible situations. The great news is that the Catzenpup Automatic Pet Feeder is now available. The Catzenpup automatic wet food feeder is an amazing new device to feed your cat or dog to improve your pet's nutrition and feeding behavior,and to bring you, the pet parent, peace of mind.



Pet parents will soon be able to feed their pups with the food they want while on vacation, at work, at the gym, running errands or wherever they may go.

This is great news for busy pet parents who have been trying to juggle healthy feeding schedules for their pups. The Catzenpup Automatic Pet Feeder will do the job for you.


For His Own Good


End the boring monotony of leaving your dog's dish filled with kibble and provide him a more nourishing and healthy habit of having meals at specified times each day. Aside from saving him from an early death or disease, it also reinforces your relationship! He will look forward to each meal you provide and your bond will only grow! Catzenpup Automatic Pet Feeder will open a fresh sealed pet wet food automatically at a specified time of day of your choosing. Your pet will hear the machine opening her wet food and come running to enjoy her lunchtime meal while you are at work or early in the morning when you are not ready to get out bed yet!



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