As the proud owner of a cuddly pup, you know that taking care of a fur companion is no small feat. You’ve got to keep their food bowl full, make sure they’re drinking enough water, give them lots of love, and take them outside to do their business throughout the day.
It’s a no-brainer that your pup needs to eat every day, but determining the appropriate quantity of food is a bit more involved. While most high-quality dog foods have rough estimations for how much to give your dog every day, there are some additional factors—including breed, size, body type, life stage, activity level, and environmental conditions—to take into consideration when filling your dog’s food bowl.
“For example, puppies should be fed more frequently than adult pets as dogs tend to need (and want) to eat less often as they get older,” says veterinarian Dr Carl Winch. “Consult with your veterinarian who can advise on the best diet for your pet that meets their individual nutritional requirements and is appropriate for their life stage.”
Just like for humans, dogs should consume fresh water throughout the day—every single day. “As a general rule of thumb, dogs should consume 90 mls of water per kilo of body weight per day, and additional water intake may be required on excessively hot days or after excessive exercise,” says Johnna Devereaux, a pet nutritionist.
Winch says to check your dog’s bowl throughout the day to track their consumption and to refill as needed. Also, bring plenty of water with you if you venture outdoors together. Travel dog bowls and bottles are an inexpensive investment that will ensure your pet stays hydrated. “If you find that your pet is drinking more [or less] than usual, having them examined by your veterinarian is recommended as this can be a sign of underlying conditions,” Winch adds.