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Dog Nutritional Requirements: Basic Dog Nutrition You Must Know

You must be fed your dog a proper diet that supplies all of the essential dog nutritional requirements. It completes dog dietary requirements in their correct quantities and proportions to maintain health throughout all stages of life. The primary goals of feeding your dogs include maintaining optimal health, supporting gestation and lactation, promoting a regular growth rate, and, in some cases, contributing to high-quality performance. 

Dog Nutritional Requirements


Proper feeding throughout your dog’s life also contributes to long-term health, longevity, and vitality. It is essential to recognize that individual nutrients do not function in isolation; interactions among crucial nutrients are necessary for your dog’s normal cellular metabolism. It affects nutrient absorption, use, and excretion. 

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Energy Balance in Dogs


All healthy animals must meet their bodies’ energy needs. The energy balance of your dogs is achieved when glucose expenditure is equal to carbohydrates ingestion, causing minimal changes in the body’s store of glucose. 

Energy Expenditure in Dogs


The body’s energy requirements can be partitioned into three major components:

  • The energy expended during rest or basal metabolic rate.
  • The energy expended during voluntary muscle activity.
  • The energy/heat produced by thermogenesis.

Factors Affecting Energy Expenditure


Various factors influence your dog’s total dai.ly energy expenditure. Body composition, age, caloric intake, and hormonal status affect an individual dog’s BMR. 

  • Gender.
  • Reproductive status of dogs.
  • Hormonal status of dogs.
  • Autonomic nervous system function,
  • Body composition of dogs.
  • Body surface area.
  • Nutritional stage.
  • Age of dogs.
  • Weight-bearing activity. 
  • The intensity of exercise.
  • Duration of exercise.
  • Size and weight of the animal.
  • Caloric and nutrient composition of the meal.
  • Nutritional state.
  • Ambient temperature. 
  • Alterations in food intake.
  • Emotional stress.

Food and Energy Intake in Dogs


The other half of the energy-balance equation is energy intake. Many studies have invested in the internal signals that govern food intake in your dogs. 

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Factors Affecting Energy Intake in Dogs


The factors affecting energy intake in dogs are of two types; internal controls of food intake and external stimuli of food intake

  • Gastric distention is due to many diseases.
  • Physiological response to sound, sight, and smell of food
  • Changes in blood concentrations of specific nutrients, hormones, and peptides.
  • Food availability.
  • Timing and size of meals.
  • Food composition and texture.
  • Diet palatability.

External Controls of Food Intake


Your dog’s social environment can be influenced by feeding behavior and food selection by the owner. For example, dogs often respond to the presence of other dogs by enhancing their rate of food intake and are also capable of learning food preferences from other dogs. Similarly, the dog owner’s behavior can influence a dog’s food choices.

Dog Nutritional Requirements

Dog Nutritional Requirements: Water


The daily drinking water requirement of your dog depends on a few factors. Water intake in dogs will increase in response to any change that causes an elevation in fluid losses from the body, such as increased physical activity, increased body or environmental temperature, changes in the kidney’s ability to concentrate urine, or the onset of lactation.

The best method of ensuring optimum water intake in dogs is to provide fresh, clean water, regardless of your dog’s physiological state, caloric needs, or DM intake. 

Carbohydrate for Dog Nutrition

Carbohydrate Requirements of Dogs


Your dogs have a metabolic requirement for glucose, and this requirement can be supplied either through endogenous synthesis or from a dietary source of carbohydrates. The female dog’s needs increase during gestation because glucose provides a significant energy source for fetal development.

Fat Requirements in Dogs


The dietary fat requirement of your dogs depends on the animal’s need for energy and essential fatty acids. Dietary fat gives a concentrated source of energy that is highly digestible. Dogs can thrive on foods having a wide range of fat content, provided that other ingredients are adjusted to be responsible for the changes in energy concentration. 

Fat in Dog Food

Dog Nutrition Requirements: Protein


Several studies have been conducted on the minimum protein requirement of your adult dog. However, differences in the aminoacid sources, energy densities, and amino acid ratios of the experimental diets have confused this requirement. Early studies showed that when diets containing a very high-quality protein source are fed, dogs need between 4% and 7% of their digestible energy calories to be supplied as protein.

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Vitamin and Minerals Requirements in Dogs


Vitamins are organic dietary constituents necessary for your dog’s growth and the maintenance of life. Still, they are not used by the body as an energy source or incorporated as part of tissue structure. The fat-soluble vitamins are vitamins A, D, E, and K. These vitamins enter from the small intestine to systemic circulation in much the same way as dietary fat and are stored primarily in the liver. 

Vitamin Rich Food for Dog

Calcium and phosphorous are necessary for the formation and maintenance of the skeletal system. These minerals are also involved in a wide range of digestive reactions. Magnesium is present in both soft tissue and bone. It is essential for your dog’s normal muscle and nervous tissue functioning and plays a crucial role in several enzymatic reactions. The body needs copper for iron absorption and transport, hemoglobin formation, and the normal functioning of the cytochrome oxidase enzyme system.

Your dog’s requirement for sodium is primarily influenced by the unavoidable daily loss of this mineral from the body. Zinc is essential for normal carbohydrate, lipid, protein, and nucleic acid metabolism, and it is necessary for the maintenance of epidermal integrity, immunological function, and taste acuity. 

Final Advice on Dog Nutrition Requirements


Your dogs require an adequate intake of nutrients each day to maintain optimal health. Requirements for energy and specific nutrients can vary significantly during the lifetime of your pet. In my article, I have to discuss with you all about information for the dog’s nutritional requirements that are very helpful for your lovely pet. Thank you for your time.

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