Getting your dog to a perfect weight - without starving them
When it comes to dogs eating habits, there are two types of dogs, and it is important for you to define which type your dog is. Defining this, lays the groundwork for how to feed them.
Here are the two types:
Dog Type #1: Dogs who love food, live for food, are constantly looking for food, dreaming about food, begging for food… you get the point. These dogs are in the kitchen when you are cooking. They inhale their bowl of food and then are at the table when you are eating. They love their treats and always want more, more, more!
Dog Type #2: These are the dogs who have a take it or leave it, pickier relationship with food. They eat the food they are given, but without stuffing their faces. They even may or may not like their treats depending on what it is.
If your dog fits into Dog Type #1 then there is something you need to accept:
If they are in perfect body condition……They are hungry!
If they are morbidly obese…..They are hungry!
Stop and dwell on this for a moment. You will NEVER be able to satisfy them! Once you accept this, you will understand the power of this concept and realize that it is easy to get your dog to lose weight and live a healthy life. All you have to do is simply feed them what they need and no more because it doesn’t matter to them…. they are STILL HUNGRY.
If you are wondering how much to feed Dog #1, here are some guidelines.
1. As a rule of thumb, do not believe instructions say on your bag of dog food. In today’s society with the average dog’s lifestyle, these pet food manufacturers are recommending way too much food.
2. First off, be aware that in animal nutrition, Kilocalories (kcal) are used instead of calories. On average, an 8oz cup of dog food has 350kcals. Obviously, this is an average, so make sure to look on the bag and find out how many kcals per 8oz cup your dog food contains.
3. As for the treat factor: This ritual is so important to the relationship the client has with their pet, so it doesn’t necessarily need to be cut out of your dog’s life.
Here are some ways to not overdo it thought:
- Break the treat in half or into smaller pieces. Again, the dog does not care at the end of the day how big the treat is; remember they are going to want more no matter what size it is.
- Also, you should know that their stomachs are not even feeling the whole treat you typically give them. You would have to feed them ten treats in order for their stomach receptors to feel it.
(Several years ago, the candy bar industry started making those tiny candy bars…bite size Snickers. If you eat one of these, do you even feel it? No way…so what do you do? You eat five more or even seven, in order to get any stomach satisfaction. Holy cow, did they fool us. For some reason, we feel guilty buying a full Snickers, but we feel better about eating five tiny bars. The point is, at the end of the day, break the treat into pieces, but never stop giving them treats.)
Whatever the reason, if you truly want to show your Dog #1 (and Dog #2) love and make them happier in the long run by giving them a longer, healthier life, start with getting them to their ideal body weight, and keeping them there.