Living Beings MUST have proper nutrition! They MUST! When you are raising a puppy (or child) you must fill all the needs for nutrients. There are websites and books and videos and Dr.s that can tell you the proper way to feed. There are Dog Food Companies that swear to you that their food is the very best! But the bottom line is, know the basics and READ THE LABELS ON THE DOG FOOD BAGS BEFORE YOU BUY THEM!
Dog Food. Dog's Diet. This is a topic that can be heard at any dog event. And sometimes in a heated discussion. There are many, many, opinions on the subject. "Research has shown.".....can mean a lot of different things to a lot of different caring people.
A Working Dog is going to need a higher calorie count than a house dog. But you do not want to serve empty calories. Nor do you want to overload any one ingredient.
My Father had working dogs. We always had Beagles that were hunting dogs. Strongheart Dog Food and anything left over from meals, and a lot of Bacon Grease was the mainstay of our dogs meals. All of our dogs lived to be over 13 years old....and most hunted that long too.
I did not know as a child feeding this canned food to our dogs, that Strongheart was not only a Real Dog, but was also a Movie Star. This is a photo of (one of the) Strongheart with co-star Julie.
What type of food and brand do you think this dog ate?
Many times a Breeder is Blamed for things an Owner did or did not do to make sure their dog was safe and healthy. Did you know that diets as well as flooring, as well as too much jumping (coming down on the back legs), as well as a laundry list of other things can cause a dog to develop Hip Displacia????! That's right. Many, many, far too many times a Breeder gets a bad name, when in truth, it was the dog owners own fault for how the dog developed. And it is not just Hip Displacia, other faults and health problems can and do develop from a poor diet, especially in a growing puppy.
The X-Ray on the right are good, what we call, Normal Dog Hip X-Ray, hips, photo on the left, hip Dysplacia or Bad Dog Hips.
Not feeding your animals correctly can lead and does lead to all sorts of heath problems. Some of those problems show up right away, some problems do not show up until later and later, is too late to do something about it.
If you ask 8 GSD Breeders and 8 Veterinarians the best Dog Food to feed your working dog, you are probably going to get 16 answers...but the theme will be the same. A High Quality, High Protein, Vitamins, Minerals, and yes, even vegetables within.
Many Breeders and people who Work Their Dogs are now feeding a Raw Meat Diet. This is a good diet as long as you include vitamins, minerals, vegetables and other foods the dog needs in it's diet. Be warned feeding a Raw Diet to your dogs can be expensive and a mess. You need to be SURE to clean up very well after with hot water and soap, not just your hands, but any surface the raw meat was on...including the dog bowls.
Why feed a dog vegetables and eggs? The idea of the Raw Meat Meal is that it is what wolves and coyotes eat. These prey animals, that eat vegetation are killed and their stomachs and guts are eaten first. When eating birds, the wolves and coyotes also eat all the eggs as in all the processes of eggs from the day before being laid back to the beginning of the form. Thus, the canine predators are eating first their vegetation, eggs, then the meat, then the bones.
Many people call this, or something similar "Biological Appropriate Raw Food" or....BARF....seems appropriate when you see how it looks in the bowl.
Personally, Deron and I eat a variety of foods fixed a variety of ways. Living Beings need to get all of their vitamins and minerals, and it needs to taste good to them. Deron and I feed our dogs the same way we eat, and most days, they get a bit of what we eat. Vegetables and all. Yes. We do feed leftovers to our dogs. Is it their meal? No. It is either a snack or mixed in with a good quality dry food.
Like so many things about raising a child or dog, or any pet really, how to feed them changes. For a while it was TABU to feed your dogs leftovers, now, "they" say it is very good for the dog. Dry Dog Food was all the rage at one time, and it will be again. It is like Solomon said way back in the Old Testament of The Holy Bible, "Nothing is new under the sun...."
It comes down to what I say about training and training equipment and housing and everything else animal related....What works for one, may or may not work for another. But make sure that whatever you feed has the nutrients and requirements that dogs and or puppies NEED.
I would like to invite you to join us on a Yahoo Group that I host called Working Big Dogs.
-- The Working German Shepherd Dogs Team
Tue, 30 Jul 2013 14:24:16 -0400