Nutrition for the Best Basset Hound

Balanced nutrition and portion control can help your food-loving Basset battle the bulge.

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On the other hand, studies at Purdue University show that feeding dry dog food containing rendered meat meal with bone products among the first four ingredients decreases the risk of bloat by 53 percent. Dogs fed canned food or homemade diets are at a significantly lower risk of developing bloat than dogs fed exclusively on kibble.

To help prevent the possibility of bloat in your dog, feed it at least twice a day. Smaller, more frequent meals are the key. It may also be helpful to add some canned food, broth or leftovers to your dogs dry food, although the reasons this helps are not yet completely understood. It was formerly believed that strenuous exercise immediately after meals increases the risk of bloat, but current studies do not support this. However, strenuous exercise after meals is not a good idea for other reasonsit can interfere with proper digestion.

A newer study implies that eating gas-producing foods, such as soybeans or brewers yeast, may also increase your dogs chance of bloating. Some owners advise feeding gas-reducing herbs, enzymes or other such products. I give each of my Basset Hounds a simethicone tablet (an inexpensive, over-the-counter drug that helps prevent the formation of gas) with every meal. Always check with your veterinarian before giving your Basset any new drug or supplement.

Gassy Bassets
Suddenly, that foul, unmistakable odor drifts through the living room and the human occupants glare suspiciously at each otheruntil the true source of the disturbance is discovered sleeping under the coffee tablethe family Basset. Obviously it was something it atebut what?

One dogs feast is another dogs flatulence, but we can pinpoint a few top suspects, most of which are not a natural part of a dogs diet.

 Milk and dairy products: Many dogs are lactose intolerant, because milk is not a natural food for an adult dog. Omit cheese and milk from your Bassets diet. Yogurt, on the other hand, may actually help flatulence, if you buy the kind with active bacterial cultures, such as lactobacillus. 

  Corn products: Lots of dog foods contain corn, especially weight-loss formulas that are designed to make your dog feel full. Among carbohydrates, corn (and soy) is more likely to cause an allergic reaction in some dogs.  

  Impacted anal sacs: The problem may not be gas at all, but infection or impaction of the anal sacs. If you notice your dog paying a lot of attention to its rear end, including butt-scooting on the ground, check with your veterinarian.

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Janet   Bethlehem, PA

5/12/2012 8:51:59 AM

good article, thanks

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