Have you ever thought about when the best time of day to feed your dog is?
Some pet owners believe that it simply doesn’t matter. Food is food, right? Others, like myself, find that it’s important to set up a good system of when you will feed your dog to make sure they can make the most of their meals.
I recently received a question about feeding times from a concerned owner who only feeds their dog one time per day. While there may be nothing wrong with feeding once per day, there is some info out there that suggests owners should do otherwise. Let’s break down the facts and figure out what to do about feeding times!
The Controversy: One Or Two Times Per Day
The main point of conflict that comes up when people discuss the best time to feed their dogs is whether or not you should feed your dog two times per day. Some people even put their dog’s food out all day long, which is called “free feeding.”
In most cases, you should feed your dog two times per day. By doing so, you are helping their digestive system work more effectively, and you are ensuring that their energy will remain consistent throughout the whole day.
If you only feed your dog in the morning, their digestive system might be weighed down by too much food at one time, and they won’t be able to process the food as efficiently. Feeding half the amount in two controlled portions will help your dog live healthier.
One big exception to this is puppies. Puppies should eat three times per day in smaller portions to help them gain weight properly and to help their digestive system develop. Feeding them at specific times will also help you to train them more efficiently.
So, what is the best way to feed?
There is no “right” or “wrong” answer, but I recommend following these guidelines to decide if you should allow your dog to free feed or if you should feed them a set number of times per day.
Free feeding: This is recommended for nursing dogs who need a constant supply of calories and for highly active dogs that need to replenish their calories throughout the day. If you have a dog that lays around most of the day or is diabetic, do not do this.
Control Portions: This is the best method to feed your dog, particularly if they are the type that will eat anything you put in front of them and would quickly get obese while free feeding. The best way to control portions is to feed your dog two times a day at about 8 to 12 hour intervals.
What Time Should I Feed My Dog?
If you are feeding your dog one time per day, you should feed them in the morning, but feeding them two times a day is probably better for them so that they do not get hungry by the end of the day.
If you are feeding two times per day, feed your dogs once in the morning when you both get up and again between 8 and 12 hours later. Keep the timing consistent from day to day, as your dog’s body will become accustomed to eating at a certain time.
Consider These Conditions…
There are some cases where you may want to change how you are feeding your dog and how much you are feeding them. If any of the following cases happens to your dog, adjust their diet and meal times appropriately:
- Diagnosed with a food related condition; may need to set specific meal times to manage it
- Dog becomes more active; may need to feed them more times per day or free feed
- Weather is very hot or cold; their bodies may need more food at each meal time to regulate their temperature
- Recovering from surgery; may need to eat a specific diet
- Pregnant or nursing; will need to eat more throughout the day
It’s important to always adjust how much your dog eats and when they are eating to fit their current lifestyle. If your dog always seems hungry but is gaining weight, you may even need to change their food to a high-quality, filling dog food (here are some reviews) that will keep them from being hungry all the time.
Consistency Is Key
As you can see, there can be arguments made for or against feeding your dog two times instead of one time per day. Every dog is different, so you should make your choices based on your dog’s particular needs and preferences.
No matter when you choose to feed your dog, consistency is key. The best time to feed your dog is at the same time you feed them every other day! To create a proper feeding routine, you should always feed at the same meal time. This will help your dog’s body digest more regularly and set good expectations for your dog’s meal time.
Do you feed your dog one or two times per day? Let us know what your preference is; after all, every dog’s situation demands a unique approach!
Dogs, just like humans are your friends and the least they want from you is to feel wanted or a sense of belonging. Besides eating together, your dog will have the time and appreciate the love and friendship you share when you include them in your travel plans. So, where are you traveling to next? Have you gone through the dog culture at your travel destination? Do you have your dogs and your travel documents? And, how will you reach your destination? Having these in mind is important if you don’t want to leave your dog with your babysitter.
If you are like most of us, you die a little every time you leave your dog whining, don’t you? Well, then, let’s take a look at some of the dog-friendly countries you and your furry friend should tour:
France is a magical travel destination that offers the best sights and sounds, as well as food. But, that isn’t all. It is the nation of dog lovers – no wonder the French are always happy! On your first trip, you’ll most probably see several canines walking down the streets. You will also spot a few resident dogs napping at shop counters, markets, cafes, and even bars.
Going to central Europe soon? Make your destination Austria. This country is a popular travel destination although it is commonly overlooked due to its beautiful neighbor Germany. Austria’s dog-friendliness means that you will have the best outdoor experience walking and swimming in the pristine lakes and hiking the scenic Austria hills. All you have to remember if you are planning to take a scenic hike is to get adequate protection for your dog’s paw because of the rocky landscape.
But that isn’t all, Austria is among the best dog-friendly countries, and it has some of the most progressive animal rights laws. Pet stores do not sell dogs and cats, and there are some training accessories deemed harmful to pets. So, in Austria, you will be on the wrong side of the law if you give your pooch shock collars or install invisible containment systems. Austria has several dog-friendly hotels and holiday inns.
If you are looking for an alternative destination to Austria, go to Hungary. There, dogs are part of the family, and there are strict dog protection laws to protect your furry friend. Hungary requires you to microchip your dog as a resident, and for the dog’s protection, tail docking isn’t allowed.
You will get to walk through Hungary’s beautiful historic city centers of Budapest. Dogs are welcome in parks, restaurants, and hotels. Some parts don’t require leashing as long as your dog recognizes voice commands.
This picturesque country will be home to you and your pup in the next few days if you make your travel plans now. The climate is ideal for your pup in the warmer months and dogs are allowed in public transport. In some parts of Sweden, you will come across food bowls and water dishes for pets. So, get ready to explore the rugged coastline or the sites in the modern-day Stockholm.
5. Great Britain
This is an advanced country that makes dogs and pets feel protected. Pets are welcome in trains across the country, and you can easily plan your trip with your dog. With your dog, you can discover the most amazing historical treasures like medieval castles, prehistoric sites, and ancient forests. How about a chance to visit Wales, England, Northern Ireland, as well as Scotland? You just may get back home with an accent!
This post was contributed by Pete Decker, the Lead Editor at The Goody Pet. Pete loves to share his passion for pets through snippets of interesting and helpful information. You can find more of Pete at his website, Twitter or Facebook.
7 Tips For Moving With Your Dog
Moving house is a stressful experience for most people. But perhaps even more so for your dog, who doesn’t understand what’s going on.
From the comings and goings of the move itself to living in a new, unfamiliar environment, it’s important to consider your dog’s needs and plan how to approach the situation carefully.
Here are some tips on how to keep your dog calm and happy when you’re moving:
1. Get her ready for the journey
Chances are, you’ve got a ride ahead of you, and it could be a long one.
If your dog isn’t used to long car journeys, it will make both of your lives easier if you start to acclimatize her well in advance of the big day.
Dogs should always be secured in the car, either with a seat belt harness or a crate, so you will need to get her used to this, too.
You can start with short trips at first, and gradually increase how long she is in the car by 5 minutes each time.
If her only experience of being in the car has been for a trip to the vets, you will probably need to create a positive association for her.
Take her on trips to the dog park, the forest, and the beach. Seeing that the car has more to offer than an unpleasant check up with the vet will soon make her feel much more comfortable about traveling.
2. Keep up her routine
During a time of disruption and upheaval, it’s important to continue with your dog’s usual routine.
Take her for walks, feed her the dog food she’s used to at the usual time of day, and ensure she has her favorite toys and a sleeping area around her.
This familiarity will help your dog feel more comfortable in a changing environment.
3. Take her to stay with friends or family on moving day
If possible, it’s a good idea to take your dog to stay with friends or family on the day of the move. This will prevent her from getting stressed by constant movement, noises, and unfamiliar people, not to mention keeping her out of harm’s way.
If this is not an option, you can keep her in a closed room in the house. Providing her with water, a comfortable sleeping area and some familiar toys will help her feel less anxious.
Putting these measures in place will not only keep your dog calm but also stop her from getting under everyone’s feet or even running away while people are distracted loading up the moving van.
4. Keep it consistent
Once you have moved into your new home, try not to change her environment too much from the previous one.
For example, if her crate was next to the door in the living room, place the crate in the same position in the new house. Put your dog’s usual bedding inside it and fill it with her favorite toys.
A similar setup and familiar smells will help her settle into her new home much quicker.
5. Ensure she is safe in the new home
Just as packing up can stress out a dog, so can unpacking, especially in an unfamiliar place. So, once you arrive, it’s a good idea to keep her confined to one area as you did when moving from the previous house.
Keeping her out of the way will also prevent her from chewing on or knocking over objects that have yet to be put away.
Once you’ve unpacked, you can allow her to sniff and explore her new abode, but you should supervise her at first to ensure the house is safe for her to roam in. This is especially important if you have a yard, as you’ll want to make sure it’s “escape proof.”
Dogs can sometimes try to run back to their old homes. So, until you feel she has fully settled and adapted to her new home and surroundings, keep your dog on the leash when you let her outside or take her for a walk.
6. Stay calm
Dogs very quickly pick up on our feelings, so if you are tense or nervous, it’s likely that your dog will be, too. Packing and moving can indeed be a very stressful experience, but to keep your dog at ease, you need to try to stay as calm as possible.
If you plan thoroughly, you will be prepared and in control, and everything will go smoothly – for you and your dog!
7. Update her tag and microchip
While it sounds obvious, updating your dog’s ID tag and microchip could be something you overlook during a busy time. It’s important to do so, especially during a period when your dog could potentially become nervous and get away from you.
While you’re transitioning from house to house, you may want to make a temporary tag with the contact number and address of a friend or family member, just in case.
Dogs can find moving stressful, but by putting measures in place, you can make the transition much smoother for her.
Remember to get her ready to travel in the car well in advance of moving to save you both stress on the big day. When you start the packing and organizing process, keep her calm by continuing with her routine as normal. On moving day, it’s a good idea to take her to stay with a friend or family member, or, if this isn’t possible, confine her to a room in the house with her bed, toys, and water.
Once you’re in the new place, keep her confined to one room as you did when moving from the previous house, and, when you’ve unpacked, supervise her as she explores the new environment. It’s also best to try to set up her crate or sleeping area in the same way as they were to give her a feeling of familiarity.
Lastly, make sure you update her ID tag and microchip with her new address and contact number.
For pet friendly air charters to make your relocation easier visit PetJets.com for a quote!
Dog Air Travel Tips!
Planning on traveling across Europe? Moving across the globe? Or going on a quick cross-country jaunt to see the family for the holidays? How about making it even better and bringing your dog along for the ride?!
But, where do you start? Sure, booking air travel is getting easier and easier for us humans – but for our little furry companions, it’s mind boggling. Or is it?
In fact, prepping your dog for air travel, booking him in, and making sure he’s comfortable on the flight is as easy as following these six steps.
Then, pretty soon you’ll be holding up a “Welcome Fido” banner at arrivals, waiting to scoop him into your arms! Just kidding, dogs can’t read, silly.
1. Clean Bill of Health
For all small pets departing the US to travel internationally, they require an “Interstate and International Certificate of Health Examination for Small Animals.”
Whereas, if you’re departing from Europe, small pets will likely require a “Pet Passport” issued by a national governing body, and stamped with up to date vaccination records from your veterinarian.
This is to prove that they are of no risk to the animal population in the destination country.
Contact your local veterinarian to ask whether they can provide you with the necessary documentation, or point you in the direction of someone who can!
2. When To Travel
We all prefer to fly direct, but it can be ever so tempting to book that flight with three stop overs and save 50% of the ticket cost. When traveling with pets, it’s never worth the saved money.
Flying is a stressful experience for us, and at least we know how long we’re going to be in the air, and that the destination is worth it!
For our pooches, as much as we try to prep in advance, flying is a stressful experience, and as loving owners, we owe it to them to make this as quick as possible.
Booking flight during off peak times, for example during the week, or first thing in the morning can also be a good option to make it aboard a quieter plane hopefully.
3. Crate Training
When you fly your pet, you have the option of using your own crate or renting one from the airline. I always suggest using your own. Having a little nest that smells like home will help to minimize your dog’s stress.
It’s essential to crate train your dog well before the date of departure. You want to create happy experiences so that in your dog’s mind – the crate is great!
Different airlines have different rules when it comes to the size allowed. Based on the size of your dog, you can check the exact dimensions when making your booking.
Playing airplane sounds, such as takeoff and landing. And gradually increasing the volume of these can help to desensitize your dog to the potentially scary sounds and prep him for a calm day of travel!
4. On The Day
On the day of travel, your dog should already be well accustomed to being in the crate, and the noise of air travel. Now all you need to do is keep your own energy calm. Taking deep breaths and avoiding caffeine on the day of the journey – at least until your fluffball in onboard.
Feed your dog four hours before travel; this will give him time to relieve himself before going into the crate and make for a more comfortable journey.
5. PREPPING FOR CABIN TRAVEL
- Clean your dog’s water resistant carrier but not so much that it loses the smell of home
- Put a good quality potty pad into the base of the bag and bring extras
- Bring a roll of diaper bags, and baby wipes so that you can quickly and discreetly change out potty pads if need be – your pup and row buddies will thank you!
- Bring a no spill water/food bowl combo
- Take along plenty of treats to help distract and calm your dog if he becomes nervous
- Be sure that you have all of your complete health certificates OR passport
- Have a collar tag with your contact info – accidents happen, and dogs do get loose
- Arrive at the airport an hour earlier than you would without your dog
- Bring along some doggy travel sickness tablets just in case
- Introduce yourself to your seat neighbors!
Don’t forget about doggie travel insurance!
No Excuse Now
Air travel with your dog is probably easier than you thought! There’s a whole world out there to discover. So hop to it! Still not sold on the idea? I understand. Traveling your pet is a significant, and expensive decision. And one that only you can make. Hearing from other people that have already gone through it is a great way to make your mind up. Hop on to a dog forum and ask for experienced travelers opinions!