Properly feeding your Pit Bull will not only keep them looking healthy but you will also help them avoid common health problems like joint problems.Pit Bulls are active dogs that need plenty of exercise. If they are overweight exercise can put extra strain on their bodies and their internal systems which can cause serious problems.
On the same line of thought, an underweight dog can also become ill due to not being on a properly balanced diet.Keeping your Pit Bull Terrier at a healthy weight requires that you put some thought into what you’re feeding, how much you’re feeding, and understanding your dogs energy requirements and nutritional needs.
This is a “trial and error” process that takes some experimenting to get right.
How to Keep Your Pit Bull at the Right Weight
The proper weight for your dog is unique to your dog. In other words, while my dogs are 65 lbs and 68lbs in peak condition their proper walking around weight is a few lbs heavier.
You learn this information through trial and error.
IMPORTANT: Two things you should do before you start getting your dog in shape. First, take your dog to the vet and get a full check up to ensure they are in good health to start. Second, keep them on the same diet but increase their exercise.
Some people make the mistake of reducing food and increasing exercise. This is not healthy. If you are going to get them out and start conditioning them, keep their food intake the same but increase the exercise gradually.
For example, if they get 2 cups of food and one walk a day. They should still get 2 cups of food even if they get 2 walks a day. Are you with me?
To Free Feed or Not
I started free feeding my girls because I didn’t know any better at the time.
I don’t recommend free feeding for three reasons:
- They can pick at the food all day.
- They can eat after exercise (they shouldn’t eat until at least 30 minutes after a walk or other exercise)
- They won’t eat when you don’t free feed.
I’m not saying you shouldn’t free feed. If you want to, then by all means, go ahead. I personally don’t do it anymore.
Setting a feeding time:
- Feed them a little bit at a time 2-4 times per day. If you feed 2 cups of food, break that up into half cups or smaller.
- Set an exact time and stick to it.
You can break up your cups into as many smaller cups as you want to and feed them to your dog at specified times.
One advantage to this is you can use this time to help train your dog.
Maintaining your dogs weight is an important issue. By setting a feeding time you can get a better handle on the situation and ensure your dog gets the proper amount of food at the right time.
Think about it this way…
Let’s imagine you have two little children. Instead of eating breakfast, lunch and dinner they snack ALL DAY between meals.
Do you think they will eat the food you fix them? Odds are, no. They will be full.
By setting the time your dog eats you have more control over the entire situation.
Treats and Other Snacks
I see treats just like the example above. If I give my girls a bully stick in the morning I cut their food by a quarter or two because the bully stick is in their bellies.
I try to keep treats to a minimum of one treat every other day.
I use dried liver for training every now and again and when I do I again cut their food at feeding time a little bit. Not too much though.
My point here is, if your dog is eating treats all day and you feed them the same exact amount of food you are actually adding more food to their diet that day. Which can increase their weight.
Keep treats to a minimum for optimum diet.
Pit Bull Health – Feeding Summary
You can free feed or set a feeding time. The choice is up to you. The point of this article was share with you the different ideas and approaches to keeping your Pit Bull at a healthy weight.
Keeping that in mind, monitoring your dogs food intake and reducing the amount of treats they eat daily will help you keep your dog at their proper weight.
Healthy dogs look skinny to most people.
Think about it this way, the more weight your dog has to carry around they have to carry the same amount of weight when they exercise and play.
Every gain a few pounds and try to run or exercise the same amount you did when you were lighter?
Wasn’t easy was it? It’s not for your dog either. So keep their food intake to a decent amount (1-2 cups per day for dry food) and give them plenty of exercise. They’ll have a much longer, healthier life in the end.
Dr. Pitcairn’s New Complete Guide to Natural Health for Dogs and Cats
Raw and Natural Nutrition for Dogs: The Definitive Guide to Homemade Meals
The Barf Diet (Raw Feeding for Dogs and Cats Using Evolutionary Principles)
Recommended Grain Free Dog Foods:
Taste of the Wild Dry Dog Food, Hi Prairie Canine Formula with Roasted Bison & Venison, 30-Pound Bag
Taste of the Wild Dry Dog Food, Pacific Stream Canine Formula with Smoked Salmon, 15-Pound Bag
Orijen Adult Formula Dry Dog Food