Breed-specific food should respond to the special characteristics of a breed and thus ideally supply the pedigree dog with all the nutrients it needs in the right amount. But how useful is it to make the food dependent on the dog breed and what can breed-specific dog nutrition look like?
Providing pedigree dogs with tailor-made food can be an optimal nutritional solution – but it is not absolutely necessary. In any case, it makes sense to pay attention to various factors in dog nutrition, which can be caused by the breed.
It is known that certain diseases are more common in some breeds of dogs than others. It has also been proven that certain diseases can be alleviated or avoided with the help of an adapted diet. It is precisely for this reason that it is recommended to inform yourself about the diseases of your own dog that are typical of the breed and to adjust the food accordingly.
For example, Dalmatians are more prone to urate stones than other dog breeds. It therefore makes sense to provide the animals with food that is low in purine – i.e. to avoid meat in the bowl if possible in order to prevent urinary stones.
Nordic dog breeds such as the husky often suffer from zinc deficiency symptoms – their bodies often cannot absorb this substance sufficiently. Typical symptoms such as hair loss and reddening of the skin can be prevented with an appropriately adapted diet.
Dalmatians need adapted food. © adobestock.com/fserega
How much and what a dog has to eat depends on its individual energy needs. This, in turn, is influenced by body mass: Dogs with a lot of muscle have a higher energy consumption than dogs with a high percentage of body fat. This factor can also be breed-related and thus affect which nutrients a dog really needs.
Subcutaneous fatty tissue also has an impact on energy requirements: if a dog is isolated by it, it needs less energy to maintain its body temperature – and vice versa. The same applies to thick fur – the strong Newfoundland dog cools down less quickly thanks to its thick coat and therefore has a 20% lower calorie requirement than an average dog.
Due to the external appearance, feeding can be specific to the breed: The tiny Chihuahua, for example, receives fewer large pieces of food than a German Shepherd due to its small jaw. Eating behavior can also play a role: a breed with particularly greedy eating behavior should be fed differently than other dogs.
If you would like to decide on a breed-typical dog diet, it is best to consult your veterinarian – he can provide you with valuable nutritional tips.