Balancing the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Feeding your cavalier the optimum amount of a nutritious food is essential to its health.

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How Much?
How much should you feed your Cavalier? That depends on a number of factors, including:  

 Age: Pound for pound, Cavalier puppies need more food than adults. Senior dogs often need less food than they did when they were younger, but some senior dogs need more.

 Activity level: A high-energy Cavalier burns up more calories than one that sleeps all day.

 Metabolic rate: Some Cavaliers metabolize their food more rapidly than others, even if other factors are the same, so they'll need more food. 

 Food quality: Your Cavalier shouldn't need as much premium dog food, because the manufacturers tend to use high-quality ingredients that are more digestible than bargain food ingredients.

 Reproduction: Pregnancy (in the last few weeks) and lactation can double or triple the mothers food consumption.  

 Size: Larger dogs usually need more food than smaller ones, as long as the other factors are similar. 

Its important to understand the factors that influence nutritional requirements, but you don't have to be a nutrition expert to figure out how much your Cavalier needs to eat. Simply start with the manufacturers recommended amount (you'll find it on the package label), then adjust it according to your Cavaliers response.

For example, if you feed the recommended amount for a few weeks and your Cavalier loses weight, increase the amount by 10 to 20 percent (unless your Cavalier needs to shed a few pounds). If your Cavalier gains weight, decrease the amount. It won't take long to determine the amount of food that keeps your Cavalier in optimal condition. Keep in mind that you'll need to adjust the amount to compensate for changes in the factors listed above. 

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Janet   Bethlehem, PA

4/2/2012 5:13:40 AM

good article, thank you

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