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How Much Pet Food Should You Be Feeding Your Dog?

Blog Home Nov 22, 2021

How much should you feed your dog?

You’ve come here for a straight answer but, just like our pooches themselves, every dog’s dietary requirements are unique. So the answer is: it depends!

There’s a few things to take into account when figuring out how much dog food to dish out. Don’t worry though, we’re here to walk you through everything you need to know so that you can keep your buddy in tip-top shape. 

What’s so important about the amount of food your dog eats?

Feeding your hairy friend too much or too little can cause a number of health issues, including joint and musculoskeletal problems, diabetes, heart disease and various types of cancer.

Dishing out measured portion sizes taking into account the factors listed below will help your doggo to maintain their ideal weight and stay active.

And it’s not just the amount of food you need to think about – it’s the quality too! Just like you, your buddy also needs a balanced, nourishing diet. Feed them a high quality dog food so they can remain happy, healthy and full of beans (not literally though, imagine the guffs!).

What can influence the amount of food your dog needs?

Your pooch’s ideal portion size will depend on the following factors:

Breed

From galumphing great danes to tiny terriers, your dog’s breed will have a big impact on how much food they need! 

Their ideal healthy weight

Maintaining a healthy weight is super important for keeping them fit and healthy.

Life stage

Your dog’s needs will change throughout their lifetime. 

Metabolic rate

Smaller dogs burn energy faster because they have high metabolic rates, whereas big dogs have slower metabolisms.

Health

Your pooch might require a special diet if they have medical problems or food sensitivities.

Activity levels

If you have a working dog, they’ll need more food compared to a fairly sedentary pooch.

Pregnancy

If your dog’s pregnant (first of all congrats!) she’ll need more calories and key nutrients to support her growing litter. 

Type of food

Not all kibble is created equal. Make sure you choose a high quality dog food like our very own Clean Bowls range that’s made with the same nutritious, responsibly sourced ingredients you’d find in your very own kitchen.

Recommended portion sizes for adult dogs

Portion sizes for adult dogs vary from product to product and are based on calorie content and ingredients. The best thing to do is to follow the guidelines for each dog food. Always check the feeding chart which you’ll find right on the back of your dog’s food packaging but keep in mind that every dog is unique so you might still have to adjust how much to feed them. If you have any questions about this, it’s worth checking in with your vet! 

Recommended portion sizes for puppies

Puppies need to be fed puppy-specific food which is packed with all the good stuff to help them grow up into strong, healthy adult doggos.

The amount of food puppies need depends on how much they’ll weigh when they’ve reached maturity. For example, a dobermann will weigh more when they’re fully grown than a cocker spaniel so they’ll need to eat more food as a puppy.

As with adult dogs, your food should come with a guide so you can feel confident you won’t end up overfeeding or underfeeding your pup. 

Happy hounds all-round!

What about dog treats?

Whether you’re training using their favourite biccies (a great incentive – works for humans too), or sneaking them some tasty chicken off your Sunday roast, remember to compensate for treats by reducing your pet’s daily meals.

Basically, treats and chews should make up less than 10 percent of your dog’s overall diet. If you go over this and don’t adjust their other food accordingly, your pooch will start to pile on the pounds…

How often should you feed your dog?

Vets recommend that most dogs should be fed twice each day – once in the morning and once in the evening. Puppies, on the other hand, should eat at least 3 or 4 times a day until they’re around 6 months old. 

Doggos thrive when they have structure so they love having set mealtimes. Wait for an hour before and after exercise before feeding your dog though – some bigger breeds can be susceptible to bloating and can even develop a twisted stomach if they’re fed too soon after exercise. This can be dangerous.

If in doubt, check in with your vet!

If you ever have any questions around the right amount to feed your dog, it’s never a bad idea to check in with your vet! They’ll point you in the right direction, give advice on how to switch dog food – say if they’re transitioning from puppy to adult pet food – and help with any special dietary needs.