Poodle Diet and Nutrition
Part of good poodle care is managing your pet’s nutritional needs. To keep its thick, curly coat looking lustrous, a poodle must have a carefully balanced diet.
Number of Feedings
A puppy has a small stomach and will probably require three or four small feedings daily at first. A mature dog is usually fed twice a day, morning and afternoon. Fresh water should be available to your poodle at all times.
Types of Commercial Food
Most high quality commercial dog foods contain all the nutrients a poodle needs. Ask your breeder and your vet to recommend the brands of food they use.
Dry dog food is probably the most commonly used type of commercial food. It tends to be less expensive than canned or semi-moist foods. In addition, dry food is good for the dog’s teeth as it helps to break up plaque. Some dogs, however, may get tired of nothing but dry food.
Canned food tends to taste better to poodles (though it smells hideous to humans). Usually rich in nutrients, it is an excellent choice to help an underweight poodle gain a few pounds. Canned foods, however, may prove to rich for some poodles who will develop diarrhea or vomiting after eating them. A good poodle care compromise is to mix a spoonful or two of canned food into your dog’s dry food.
Semi-moist foods should be avoided by poodle owners as they are often high in sugars. Although the poodle might enjoy the taste, the sugars could make it ill.
What about Special Treats?
There are any number of special treats for dogs on the market. Again, seek the advice of your breeder or vet before deciding which ones to purchase. Treats should be used in special situations only, such as when you are training your pet. Don’t over-feed treats or they will lose their reward value.
Foods to Avoid
No dog can beg more prettily than a poodle, but don’t give into the temptation to feed your pet table scraps. This is not good poodle care. Much of the food that humans consume can be harmful or even deadly to a dog.
Especially avoid the following foods, which are poisonous to poodles: chocolate, artificial sweeteners, processed sugars, grapes, raisins, and onions. Poodles also do not do well digesting turkey or pork.
With these guidelines in mind, it’s time to decide on the right diet for your poodle.