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The Importance of Show Dog Nutrition

By: Elaine Everest - Updated: 10 Sep 2012 | comments*Discuss
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It goes without saying that every dog should be fed good quality nutritional food. However, when an exhibitor is preparing a dog for the show ring it is vital that the animal is in tip top condition if he expects to prove to the judge that he is top dog.

These days there is no end of choice when it comes to feeding our dogs. Most of a dog’s diet is down to the choice of the owner as to whether it is dry complete food, wet (tinned) food, or one of the natural choices.

Feeding Your Puppy

When purchasing your future show dog your breeder will advise on what to feed the young puppy. Please listen to this person as they would have had years of experience within the breed and would no doubt have bred many good quality dogs. After all you wouldn’t be going to a novice breeder for your show dog – would you?

Your breeder will be someone that will become a close friend as you exhibit your dog around the myriad of dog shows that make up the UK dog show scene – in fact these days with the introduction of the Pet Travel Scheme you could well be travelling abroad to exhibit your prize specimen with the crème of your chosen breed on the continent.

Listen to your breeder and follow the diet sheet she supplies, if you have any doubts about the dog food she recommends speak to her first.

Ensuring Optimum Performance

Whatever dog food your future champion eats it is only part of the overall build up of a good show dog. Firstly you would have studied the pedigree of your chosen puppy, seen dogs of similar breeding in the ring and been impressed with their quality and the consistency of the good dogs in that line.

Next you will be training your dog for the ring from the day it arrives home. You and the dog will work as one in the ring. You will also be exercising the dog so that it is well muscled and toned as an athlete in tip top condition should be.

Further more the dog will be groomed and cared for by your family and ultimately treated like a well loved member of the family that it lives with. Remember that a dog’s show career only spans a few years of its life.

Natural Dog Food

You may decide to follow a natural diet for your dog. This could consist of raw meat and bones or perhaps a bones and raw food diet. Both of these diets are well followed by dog lovers and have a valid place within canine nutrition. There are groups that you can join to discuss these feeding systems and also books written by the originators and followers of raw diets.

Complete Dog Food

In these busy times complete dog food is probably the most popular of feeding fashions for dogs. You only have to read the content label of the feed sacks to know that much research and time has been spent to give our canine friends the best nutritional value possible.

There are many different manufacturers of complete foodstuffs and at the end of the day the choice is up to you. Some foods are organic others hyper allergenic, others vary in flavours and size of the kibble depending on the size of the dog.

A major step forward in present time has been the types of food to suit the age and working life of the dog. This can be very confusing but you will find upon visiting the larger dog shows that each major food manufacturer will have representatives on hand to discuss your needs and the needs of your puppy.

Some exhibitors pick a dog food because of what the manufacturer can offer them in the way of sponsorship during their show career.

Top Condition

Whatever dog food you decide is best for your dog remember that when changing to a new food to introduce it slowly over several weeks so that your dog gets used to it slowly and does not get an upset stomach. Never be tempted to overfeed your dog ass the judge will be quick to spot this in the ring and it could go against the dog on the day and he will be left out of the cards just because of your over zealous feeding.

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