Ensuring your dog maintains an appropriate weight is essential to keeping him healthy.  Just ask the people who write the dog insurance premiums: too fat and he’s at risk from diabetes, arthritic problems and heart conditions; too thin at he’ll likely suffer from reduced energy levels, reproductive problems and healing disorders.  However, there are so many different foods available (most of which tell you something completely different about what your pet needs) that it can be virtually impossible to know what to do and who to trust.

Trust no food providers – they just want to make a sale.  They may declare “One scoop twice a day for a dog of ten kilograms”, but clearly there is more to a dog’s food requirement that how much it weighs!  A young ten-kilo farm dog, for example, will need more food than an old ten-kilo house dog that barely moves around; check almost any food packaging, however, and you’ll see almost no reference of these facts whatsoever.  Hence, our advice to you is to do your own research and learn about dog nutrition for yourself; then you can apply your knowledge to the content of various foods, helping choose the correct type and amount of food for your dog.  Tomorrow I’ll explain the best method of working out how much food your pet actually needs.