How to Feed an Adult Pitbull
Properly feeding your pitbull is important for several reasons including
overall health, disease prevention throughout the dog's life span, and
making sure your pitbull stays strong and looking healthy.
Properly feeding a pitbull goes hand in hand with the fact that they are very active dogs. A properly fed pitbull will absorb the right amount of protein and nutrients without being malnourished, but will not be overfed to the point where they become excessively overweight and lose their overall stamina. A lack of exercise and excessive feeding often causes pitbulls to suffer from extra bodily strain, thus causing internal illness and injury.
Once you take a pitbull home and start a feeding regimen, it is important that you take your dog to the vet to get a routine check up, get up to date on booster shots, and talk to the veterinarian about the ideal feeding regimen for the dog. The type and amount of food that should be fed to a pitbull varies from dog to dog, so once your veterinarian looks over the dog it will be easier for them to determine a specific routine that is best for your pitbull.
As you begin following the feeding regimen for your pitbull, make sure they are receiving regular exercise in conjunction with a balanced diet. Once your pitbull becomes an adult, they will often become accustomed and comfortable to their feeding and exercise routine, and their body will adjust and develop in a healthy manner.
Avoid feeding your pitbull more food just because they got more exercise one day. If your dog typically receives two cups of food and one walk a day, the dog should still receive two cups of food even if they receive two or three walks one day. Keeping a balanced diet that is not altered according to exercise is important for a healthy and happy pitbull.
Rather than free feeding your pitbull and letting them pick at their daily food intake whenever they please, set a specific feeding schedule. The amount of food your dog should receive can be determined by your veterinarian, so take that amount and divide it into two or three servings throughout the day. If your pitbull requires two cups of food per day, break it up into four half cup servings or two one cup servings in the morning and in the evening. Setting an exact feeding time for your pitbull is also ideal, as it will help with training your dog to stick to a schedule and handle discipline more efficiently.
Not only does feeding your pitbull at specific times help to create a schedule, but it is an easier way for you to regulate your dog's weight. Sticking to a specific schedule prevents your dog from eating whenever he pleases, and regulates their digestive tract so they have a more regular and healthy bathroom schedule. Feeding your pitbull at specific times also allows exercise to be more efficient, as you will be less likely to feed your dog on an empty stomach if he has already eaten for the morning or evening. It is not unusual for dogs who are free fed to eat nothing until the evening because they simply lay around throughout the day or get distracted, so it is healthier to maintain a strict eating schedule.
Another way to maintain a healthy feeding routine for your pitbull is to limit treats and only give them to the dog on certain days each week. Three or four treats a week at the maximum is ideal, but if you prefer to give your dog more treats, particularly during training, cut down slightly on the amount of food they receive in a serving for each treat the dog receives. The treat will already be sitting in their stomach, so if your pitbull is still receiving two cups of food, that is adding to their diet which is less likely to be burned off and more likely to contribute to inconsistently increasing their diet. Keeping treats to a minimum or cutting down on food intake if treats are a regular part of the pitbull's diet is integral to maintaining a healthy weight.
An adult pitbull feeding routine is also dependent on the amount of exercise your dog gets. Dogs who are regularly outside in a large backyard, especially with other dogs that encourage them to play and interact, are more likely to get a bigger amount of exercise, therefore requiring more food to make sure they are receiving nutrition aside from what is being burned off. If you walk your dog twice a day every day and regularly have them playing outside, your dogs diet will be considerably larger than a dog that is walked once a day and does not play outside or interact with other dogs as much. Dogs who live in a household with other dogs also receive more exercise, and if there are multiple dogs, it is important to make sure they are both trained on the same feeding schedule to prevent their schedules from interfering with the schedule of the other dog. If you have a group of dogs, it is easier for you and them if they all come to dinner collectively, rather than free feeding them or allowing them to eat whenever they please.
Once you have your pitbull on a regular diet and exercise schedule, it is important that you monitor them regularly to make sure they are remaining healthy and are at a regular, consistent weight. If your dog appears to be malnourished or packing on excessive weight, talk to your veterinarian to find out if a change in diet or exercise is necessary. There are a wide variety of dog foods available on the market, so the type of food that works best for one pitbull may not be the best choice for another dog of the same breed. It is not unusual for pitbull owners to go through several types of food before discovering the brand that is best for their dog.