The arrival of the dogs will be very exciting and exhausting, both for your dog and for you. Although it is wonderful to welcome some adorable hairballs to your home, it will be hard work for the new mother to gestate, give birth and take care of a naughty litter.
Therefore, it is very important that you make sure that your food contains all the nutrients it needs. Eating properly will ensure that both mom and her puppies are healthy and happy.
Although adult formulated food is great for your usual diet, during pregnancy you will need an additional supply of nutrients, especially if you are waiting for a large litter.
Future moms need more energy and protein, both present in a good quality puppy food. Feeding your pregnant dog with a puppy formula will provide the nutritional support your pet needs during and after pregnancy.
The physical state of your dog (and any other medical issue) can influence her nutritional needs during pregnancy. You can better know the physical state of your dog with our fitness tool.
Why should I feed my dog with puppy food during pregnancy?
Puppy food is richer in essential nutrients and provides more energy than adult formulated food. In addition, it is easier to digest. It is important to keep all this in mind when feeding pregnant dogs.
Feeding your dog with a formula for puppies from weeks 3-4 of gestation will help her stay strong, and pass the nutrients to her pups through breast milk.
You must gradually introduce the new food in your diet, to allow time for your digestive system to adapt. Start by introducing puppy food in its usual formula, a little at a time, for about a week, until you have completely replaced one meal with another.
Keep in mind the size and preferences of your dog when choosing the puppy food you are going to give her.
Per serving, dry food contains more calories than wet food. Therefore, if your dog's diet consists only of wet food, you will have to feed her more times (or in larger rations) to make sure she gets the extra energy she needs, especially if it is a breed of size big. You can also try mixing your wet food with some dry food to give you the best of both.
Make sure you always have easy access to plenty of clean, fresh drinking water to stay hydrated, especially if you are going to use a dry food formula during pregnancy.
How much food should I give to a pregnant dog?
In feeding pregnant dogs, maintain the usual size of your ration during the first weeks of pregnancy. During these early stages, your dog may get away from food or suffer from small nausea or vomiting, similar to human "pregnancy nausea." Although it may seem worrisome, it is not: it is a completely normal process. However, if you are worried about your loss of appetite or if you still have discomfort, go to the veterinarian.
It begins to increase its food intake, little by little, from the fifth week of gestation. Increase the size of your ration a little each week, so that by the ninth week the ration size is approximately one third larger than normal. By then, mom's weight will have increased by about 25%, or even more if she is waiting for a large litter.
Measure and control the rations to avoid eating too much and develop obesity, as this would cause problems during pregnancy and childbirth. If you are worried about your pet's weight during pregnancy, go to your veterinarian.
It is best to feed your pregnant dog with small and frequent rations in the last stages of pregnancy, since a belly full of puppies will not have much room for food.
How much food should I give a dog during breastfeeding?
Feeding your newborn litter is hard work for mom, since her puppies need plenty of nutritious breast milk to grow strong and healthy. In fact, did you know that bitches produce more milk for their puppies than women for our babies?
To help her get the extra energy she needs to breastfeed her hungry litter, continue feeding her with the puppy formula she started eating during pregnancy. Its higher caloric content and added nutrients will provide resistance and help you produce high quality milk for your dogs.
During weeks 1-3 of breastfeeding, increase your daily meals from two to three. In the fourth week (when your milk production reaches its peak), it goes up to four daily meals. The serving size of each of these meals should increase as follows during breastfeeding:
- First week: 150% of your usual ration
- Second week: 200% of your usual ration
- Third week: 300% of your usual ration
The amount and frequency of meals of your dog during breastfeeding will depend on your breed and the size of your litter. If you are breastfeeding a litter of more than four puppies, you will need so much energy that perhaps it is best to allow you constant access to food.
New moms will breastfeed their litter for approximately 6-8 weeks, but puppies can begin to try solid food from 3-4 weeks of age. As the puppies are weaned, gradually reduce the food intake of the mother, until it reaches again the amount prior to gestation.
If you have questions about feeding at this important stage, talk to your veterinarian about feeding your pregnant dog during all phases of pregnancy and lactation.
1. Extreme temperatures during the pregnancy of the dog
Both extreme cold and heat they are harmful to any dog and, even more, for a pregnant canine female. Extreme cold can cause you to get sick and then you will be unappetizing and decayed, which will result in a loss of appetite in the pregnant dog.
The best way to prevent the pregnant female from getting sick in winter is to protect her from low temperatures. Sudden changes are inadvisable for the pregnant bitch, so you should shelter it during your trips abroad in winter.
The extreme heat of summer is just as harmful as very low temperatures. The fatal heat stroke in the dog is more likely among certain segments of the canine population, such as pregnant females, puppies, dogs that suffer from heart or respiratory diseases and the elderly dogs.
Pregnant bitches have a faster metabolism than usual. Therefore, during the summer, it is recommended that you always have shade and fresh water.
2. The dog must always have fresh water
Adequate hydration helps the pregnant female to regulate her body temperature
Proper hydration helps the pregnant female regulate her body temperature. A pregnant dog can drink all the water she needs. Like the rest of the dogs, you should always have clean and fresh water available (warmer than cold).
3. Obesity is dangerous during the pregnancy of the dog
Obesity and overweight are not recommended for a pregnant female canine. Excess fat increases the risk of difficulties in expelling puppies through the birth canal (dystocia).
According to José Capacés, veterinarian, "excess abdominal fat makes muscle contraction difficult during childbirth".
The dog must have a weight adjusted to its size, age and race before beginning gestation.
4. Sedentary lifestyle does not benefit the pregnant female
Sedentary lifestyle and obesity cause problems during the birth of the dog
Sedentary lifestyle causes obesity and overweight that will result in joint and cardiorespiratory problems. A pregnant dog can walk, play and run, unless the veterinarian indicates otherwise. It is what happens when there is a risk of abortion or uterine rupture.
Until 45 days of pregnancy, the dog will not be bulky or feel more clumsy or upset. Moderate rides and games help maintain your physical health, to tone your muscles and improve your mood.
Why does my pregnant bitch not eat?
As we always say, Before trying to solve a problem, we must look for the cause. In this case, it is essential to decide what are the reasons that our dog does not want to eat.
The first thing to understand is that, although she is a dog, her pregnancy does not differ much from that of the human being. Therefore, their hormones are revolutionized, nausea appears, heaviness, heat and many other factors influence your mood and appetite.
So, due to these reasons, it is very likely that a pregnant dog does not want to eat for a few hours or even a few days. This should not alarm us more than the account. Nausea, especially, is one of the main reasons why our pet would refuse food. Is it normal, or do you eat when you feel like vomiting?
Of course, these symptoms will be normal as long as they appear after the third week of pregnancy. If it happens before, it is better that you go to the veterinarian, because the cause could be more serious.
Another reason could be that as your physical activity decreases, your food portions do too. When you look at his bowl you will see that he eats less than usual, but this does not have to be a major problem. It could also be that due to the changes in his body he no longer likes the feed you give him.
What do I do if my pregnant bitch doesn't want to eat
Once we have identified some of the best known causes for which a pregnant dog does not eat, it is time to take action to solve the problem. Although some of the causes are not of major concern, it is true that, after a while, this becomes a danger to moms and babies, so it is our time to take action.
Here are some tips you can follow if your pregnant dog doesn't eat:
- Put smaller portions. You know that pregnant women sometimes get disgusted, so to speak, to food. It is possible that if your dog goes through such a moment, and sees too much food on her plate, it makes her nauseous and doesn't even want to get close. You could put small portions in several shots a day.
- Change the feed. If you think you might not like feed anymore, try looking for another one with a different flavor. If the one you have is chicken, switch to veal or fish. Ask a veterinary shop for advice on specialized feed in pregnant dogs.
- Try the soft diet. If even after changing the feed, your pregnant dog does not eat, try the BARF diet. Maybe a change is what you need.
- Clean your feeders. Both the trough and the trough must be clean and always have fresh food and water. Pregnant women become more delicate with the issue of cleanliness.
- Try to exercise. If you think you simply eat less than usual, it may be due to lack of exercise. Walking is not bad for pregnant bitches, but quite the opposite. Take long walks at a slow pace with her and see if this increases your appetite.
- Take her to the vet. If after trying all these measures you do not get results, take the dog to the veterinarian, especially if it has been 24 hours since the last meal. In the case of drinking, do it before this time elapses, as it could become dehydrated.
Quiet, with a little effort you can get your dog to eat And, if not, you already know that veterinarians are specialized in any type of problem that our pet could present. Take good note of these tips and everything will have remained in a slight scare.
Other causes of loss>
In addition to nausea, a pregnant dog may stop eating for other reasons that should be known to deal with this situation:
- It is possible that theirfood preferenceshave changed and be waiting for more menu changes or a more succulent food.
- If there is a sedentary lifestyle, in absence of physical exercise The stimulus necessary to arouse appetite will not be provoked.
- A pregnant dog may stop eating because she is given a take too much of food, in this case will not respond with appetite to the subsequent intake.
- Stomach problems, especially if they had already occurred before pregnancy.
What can I do to stimulate my pregnant dog's appetite?
Here are some simple tips that will help you get your dog back to recover good eating habits despite the different situation that causes pregnancy in your body:
- it's possible change the feed more frequently. If we do not want to take this action, it will be necessary that we never change the usual food, only then will the dog understand that this is what she should eat, otherwise her behavior will be very similar to that of a child who knows that she will be rewarded with a dessert .
- It is important keep a routine, that is, always feed him at the same times and preferably after the walk, as appetite will be more stimulated. In relation to this point, you can consult our article on "Walking the dog before or after eating?" and inform you of everything, not only for this stage of your dog, but to establish the best routines.
- We should not leave the food that the dog has not taken in the feeder, that is, if after 10 minutes she has not eaten more, then it is time to remove the food until the next take.
If, despite taking these actions, the dog's appetite does not improve, it is important go to the vet, since it can recommend the use of a nutritional supplement, which must surely be removed once the animal regains its normal appetite.
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