We all love to treat our four-legged furry friends but are you giving your cockapoo too many treats and are they healthy. It is hard to resist that cute little face looking up at you I know, but although I try to keep to just a few a day, I must admit my wife does tend to give more.
There a few reasons to try and not to give too many treats, the first being that you risk them becoming overweight, secondly dog treats very rarely have the same nutritional value of pet food and lastly, I personally feel that if you give too many they are no longer dog treats.
How many treats are too many
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Most veterinarians will advise you that 10% of your cockapoo’s diet is about the right amount of treats, but how do you know what that 10% is I hear you ask. Well, it all comes down to calorie counting.
If you have your cockapoo on a good feeding regime and know exactly how many calories you are giving them you will easily be able to work out the 10%, but if not then this can be a difficult one as you will need to find out the number of calories your dog receives.
How to work out 10% of your cockapoos diet
The number of calories that individual cockapoos require will never be the same, even if they are the same weight and size. For example, if one cockapoo is very active and one not so, then the recommended amount of calories for the active dog will be greater as they will be burning calories throughout the day.
Almost all dog food will tell you the number of calories per cup (there are approximately 224 grams or 8 ounces if you are old school in a cup) and recommend how many cups a dog of a certain size will require but this may vary between dogs, ask your vet to get the best advise.
Once you know the total number of calories you are giving your cockapoo you can work out your 10% and this 10% in calories must then be taken from their normal food and can be given as treats.
Are you giving your dog the right treats?
Now that is dealt with, hands up who gives to many treats, truth be known that will be a lot of us, but, will knowing the correct amount ensure that you do not over treat?
Maybe, but maybe not for a lot of us, so let’s take a look at the best dog treats that you can give to your dog to keep them healthy and avoid the weight gain while still letting us spoil them.
The best will be some of the natural food that we humans eat daily to stay healthy, such as green beans or baby carrots etc. as these contain few calories and contain beneficial vitamins for your cockapoo. There are quite a few of these food types, but please do your research before giving your dog human food.
If your cockapoo won’t eat veg though be sure to find treats that contain more natural ingredients with plenty of protein and vitamins. There are some very good treats on the market that will not harm your pet and contain healthy ingredients, always check the packaging for natural elements.
What treats do you need to avoid
As with any pet food products that are available there are both good and bad on the market and just because some may be well known and advertised, it does not always follow that they are the best.
Again I say, check the packaging for the details of all ingredients and be sure to avoid the treats that contain high calories and additives such as artificial colours and flavours, sodium, along with any sugar that may have been added.
Which chew treats are the best for your cockapoo
Chew treats are great for keeping our pets occupied for a while if we are busy, but they can also present a choking hazard that must be taken into consideration.
Avoid rawhide treats as these are chemically treated and carry with them a great choking hazard as your pet can tear off large parts and swallow. In fact, some people have even called it the ‘deadliest chew’ for this reason, along with the fact that these can also upset the digestive system.
If you really do want to give your dog a chew treat then try to go for a natural treat, but be careful some packaging will fool you into thinking a product is natural when it actually isn’t. As with the little treats always read the packaging so you know what you are giving to your gorgeous cockapoo.
I appreciate it is a bind looking at ingredients and that we are not always as good at doing this as we should be, but remember, once you have found the treats for you, you won’t have to do it again.
All dogs love a good chew but vets will normally recommend that the best way to let them do this is with a high-quality chew toy, but try to find something that is not too hard, as this can damage or break your pet’s teeth.