Video: Basic Principles Of Feeding Dogs And Cats
2023 Author: Molly Page | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-07-31 03:34
Karl Marx wrote that human life is unthinkable without three things - food, water and clothing. The life of dogs and cats in this regard is somewhat simpler, at least they do not need clothes. But our four-legged friends also cannot do without food and water.
In order for an animal to grow and develop normally, the diet must contain all the components necessary for its metabolic processes(proteins, fats, carbohydrates, minerals, vitamins and water). Feeding is one of the major determinants of animal health, productivity, usability and longevity, which is where I start a conversation with pet owners who are having trouble feeding their pets. Every year I notice that my instructions are becoming more concise. It is possible that the years take their toll and much is forgotten. Or maybe the reason for this was the massive transition to dry food and canned food. Indeed, the wave of ready-to-use pet foods has divided the "dog lovers" and the "cat lovers" into 2 irreconcilable camps. Some argue that they will not calculate how many different components of the diet are required for his pet in different periods of life - there is no time, and to do it just as accurately,as specialists involved in the production of ready-made feed, they will not be able to. Others, foaming at the mouth, argue that they have raised generations of dogs (or cats) on natural products. At the same time, they will definitely point a finger at some shabby St. Bernard or a cat with urolithiasis from a neighboring apartment, who in their lives have not eaten anything other than these “ready-made surrogates”.
Both opinions are not groundless, but we will not discuss them now because:
- the principles of composing the diet in both cases are the same;
- they are based (or should be based) on the physiological needs of the animal.
Principle 1. Optimal ration volume. Puppies and kittens who still “do not know what to do” feel that they have satisfied their hunger only after filling most of the stomach with food. Sometimes this happens with adult animals, especially if they get some tasty food. An excess amount of food is poorly processed by the secretions of the digestive tract (saliva, gastric and intestinal juices, bile) and simply cannot be fully digested. As a result, most of the nutrients are not absorbed. Disposal of fodder filling the stomach and intestines comes with vomiting or diarrhea. Their consequences can be very different, but they do not exhaust all possible troubles. An overcrowded stomach has a high degree of inertia and when the animal moves sharply, it twists around its axis. It is only possible to save the life of a carnivore with gastric volvulus with a timely visit to a veterinarian, and even then not always, because to do this, you must first cut off and then sew this organ to the esophagus and duodenum, on which it hangs.
The required amount of the ration is determined for each animal individually. It varies widely, both between animals of the same weight of different breeds, and between individuals of the same breed. In general, the amount of food should be such as to satisfy the feeling of hunger, but not have a long-term significant negative effect on the activity of the animal. In most cases, when an animal gets used to a constant feeding regimen, its body itself limits the amount of food taken.
Principle 2. Optimality of calorie content. Food for an animal is primarily a source of energy that allows you to maintain a constant body temperature, the work of muscles and all organs of the animal.
Experts at the Waltham Research Center recommend determining the average daily energy requirements of animals in moderate climatic conditions using the formula:
E = 125 M (0.7) kcal, where M is the body weight of the animal (kg).
The energy requirements of animals depend on the temperature of the environment, the state of the coat, sex, age, physical activity and the physiological state of the animal. Indoor animals also consume 8-10% less energy than animals constantly living outdoors or in open enclosures. In the latter, energy needs decrease by about 15% in summer and increase by the same amount in winter. Long-haired dogs and cats need, all other things being equal, less (by about 10-15%) amount of energy than short-haired ones. Small animals have a more intense energy metabolism than large ones. Males spend 5-7% more energy than females. Greater mobility requires more energy supply.
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Even Karl Marx wrote that human life is unthinkable without three things - food, water and clothing. In this regard, the life of cats is somewhat easier, at least they do not need clothes. But our four-legged friends also cannot do without food and water