Dog food nutrition is something that can be very difficult to understand due to the terminology and wording used by huge brands. Common sense tells us that the cheapest food on the shelf, even if it is labelled as a ‘complete’ dog food, cannot be of the same quality as the one five times the price.
So how do you know whether you are feeding your Bichon Frise the right food?
If you are buying packaged dog food then the first clue is the price. No matter what the blurb says cheap dog food is filled with low quality meat, high amounts of fillers and is full of colours and preservatives.
It’s important to do your own research on a brand. Have you ever been recommended a brand by your vet? Chances are they are being paid to promote it, and even if it is the most expensive dog food you have come across, don’t be fooled. It doesn’t mean it is much better.
So don’t buy cheap, and don’t just buy a brand because your vet tells you to.
Always go for kibble unless there is a specific medical reason not to. Bichons can start to lose their teeth by the time they are seven, and kibble will help them to stay strong and healthy.
The absolutely best way to know if the dog food nutrition value is high is if it uses human grade food. If we can eat it then it is definitely suitable for our pet.
Minerals and Vitamins For Dogs
Vitamin & Best Source
Vitamin A Palmitate
Vitamin B-1 Thiamine Hcl & Yeast
Vitamin B-2 Riboflavin & Yeast
Vitamin B-6 Pyridoxine Hcl & Yeast
Vitamin B-12 Cyanocobalamin & Yeast
Vitamin D D-activated Sterol
Vitamin E dl-alpha tocopherol acetate
Para Amino Benzoic Acid
Mineral & Best Source
Calcium Oyster Shell & di-cal phos (di-calcium phosphate)
Iodine Sea Kelp
Iron Ferrous Fumerate
Phosphorus Oyster Shell & di-cal phos
This is a list of the essential dog vitamins and minerals needed by your Bichon.
If you are buying a food check the packaging. Does it have these in it?
If you decide that you want to opt for a home cooked diet for your dog then all these will needed to be added to your Bichon’s meal.
You can get supplements for dogs in the same way you can get them for yourself – talk to your vet and do some brand research online or offline to find the best ones.
Food and Exercise
The amount you feed your Bichon Frise has to be proportionate to the amount of exercise he does. As a small lapdog they do not require hours of walks and are the perfect companion for apartment or city dwellers.
However, if your Bichon, or Bichon Frise cross, has more exercise than he needs then his food will need to be increased to meet his extra exertions. Being such a small dog even a few extra kibble pieces will make a difference to your Bichon and can result in unnecessary weight gain if you feed it too much.
Use an online dog food calculator to calculate the perfect amount of food needed. Input his (ideal) weight and activity level and the calculator will give you a calorie limit for the day.
Check how many calories your dog gets per so-many ounces, cups or grams and you will have the ideal amount of food!
Having a high quality food and maintaining the right amount of food for your dog’s weight, is essential to keeping him happy and healthy.
If you decide to adopt a Bichon Frise rescue dog then be sure to talk to the Bichon rescue centre about possible food allergies, possessiveness or greediness.
Dogs that have been mistreated and/or starved may require extra training with regards to protecting their food bowl or stealing food. These are both things that can be trained out of a rescue dog by using positive reinforcement.
If your Bichon or Bichon Frise x is particularly greedy then it is even more essential to have a set amount of food to give per day – extra food means extra calories, which means extra weight and a decreased life expectancy.
Dog food nutrition is just as important to them as it is to us. We don’t want to live off cheap ready made meals and neither to our dogs!
For more information about the Bichon Frise, check out the highly recommended Insiders Guide To A Happy, Healthy & Well Behaved Bichon Frise package today!