Diet

 
Like most Pug parents we are only too familiar with the 'what to feed' dilemma. When we were new Pug owners, we were so paranoid about 'doing the right thing'. This really is a minefield. This is a HUGE area, surrounded with much debate. However, this is a crucial part of your Pugs care.
 
Some vets do appear to be very 'keen' to promote certain brands. but there really are a number of options available to you.
 

Canine nutritional experts suggest the very best diet, is an organic home made, free from antibiotics, hormones etc.

Home cooked diet. Can be time consuming, but, you can cook in batches and freeze. NEVER give your dog onions as a certain chemical in them, can be toxic. I wouldn't recommend this type of diet for a growing puppy, simply because it can be difficult to get the right nutrients. I would only attempt this except under expert guidance. Most dogs will enjoy a diet of brown rice, wholemeal pasta, fish and lean meats. You can also offer them a good selection of fruit. NEVER offer grapes, raisins etc. these are toxic to all dogs.

 
Lets get real, most of us do not have the knowledge or resources to carry out the above to the full.
 
Most people, ourselves included, find a good commercial diet the most practical. We feed our boys a complete dry diet. George is on Ekanuba Prescription Intestinal Diet, as he has intestinal problems. Archie is on James Wellbeloved, (cereal free). This food is free from additives and flavourings. We also used to give this to George before his condition occurred. A dry diet helps promote healthy teeth & gums. Contrary to popular belief, dogs do not necessarily require a huge variety. Archie loves it and never leaves a crumb. Don't be afraid to ask for small samples. That way, you can offer your dog a variety, until you find what he seems most attracted to. Try to avoid addiditives at all costs. We tend to find, that with all commercial foods, the manufacturers' recommended feeding guide can be on the generous side. We tend to just undercut the suggested amount. Of course, one needs to take into account the level of exercise of each individual dog. Our boys are both very active. We live in the countryside and they run across fields and into farms, (George) twice a day. So for Pugs, ours are quite slim. No doubt somebody, somewhere will contradict everything I've said. I can only speak from personal experience. Our boys are healthy, happy and very disobedient!!!!
 
Always weigh the daily amount of food out. Take any 'treats' from this amount. We tend to feed 3-4 times a day as opposed to 1-2 large meals. We find this suits our Pugs better. It also keeps their blood sugar levels at a more constant level, so you get generally happier dogs. Obviously, they'll require more to drink. As I am home most of the time, I realise that not everybody can be available to feed their dogs every 4-6 hours. I'm just telling people what I do. Many dogs are quite happy to be fed 1 or 2 larger meals.
 
Providing you Pug is of a healthy weight and you're wanting to use a commercial diet, I would use an adult maintained. If he's a little 'Puggy', you might want to consider a 'lighter' option. When he's achieved his goal, then gradually change to maintained.
 
3. Commercial canned food is something that we were told never to use. However, there is a lot of evidence to suggest, that it can be less processed that some dried foods. I would also stay clear of supermarket brands. As a general rule, buy the best food you can afford. When introducing a new food, do it gradually, perhaps over 5-7 days. Adding small amounts each day to existing food and increasing the new/ decreasing the old, everyday. This way, you're less likely to cause your dog unpleasant tummy upsets. Some people find that their dogs are happy with a half mix of dry and wet.
 
Short of physically going to the processing factory where the food is made, we can only suggest that you try to find as natural diet as possible, without by products. The best compromise we came to, is to throw in raw products, like fruit etc. Our boys love raw carrots and apples. Archie adores oranges, George hates them! A few times a week we give them cooked vegetables and meat without salt or gravy. Natural, sugar free yoghurt, (e.g. a few tablespoons), used as a treat, 2-3 times a week, can also be beneficial due to the bacteria that also keeps us healthy. Adding fresh garlic to the diet is very beneficial, can be given every day. Cottage cheese, is an excellent source of protein and easy to digest. As are scrambled eggs. Only add new things gradually and individually,. That way, if they have a reaction, you'll soon know and can stop. No doubt, someone will say, 'you shouldn't mix complete food with other stuff, you risk knocking off the balance'. George nearly died in Jan 06. He had a massive part of his colon removed, twice!! The first surgery broke down. He was in intensive care, in a humans baby's incubator, in a specialised hospital for 10 days. How he survived really was a miracle. We were told we'd never get him to put on weight and he'd suffer from diarrhoea for the rest of life, that was if he even survived. He lost more than half his body weight.That was 14 months ago. He's now back to perfect weight, with perfect muscle tone. His shiny coat gets lots of comments. Yes, we give him prescription food, but we supplement with all the things I've mentioned.
 
Good luck and if you have ANY questions, please just ask. If you would like some doggy recipes please Contact Us.

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