From the moment you bring home that warm buddle of fluff, you become responsible for feeding and caring for it. The dog will depend on you for its food, exercise, grooming and love. It’s a huge responsibility because your actions in regard to your puppy will determine to a large extent the longevity of its life, its health and well being.
Once your Cavalier King Charles is at your home
As soon as you bring your puppy home, make sure to have it checked out by a vet that you have selected. Your vet will guide you on the feeding requirements of the breed. The general rule of thumb for feeding your puppy is between the ages of 8 weeks to 6 months feed twice a day, morning and evening. You will have to slowly increase the quantity of food according to the dog’s weight. One of the best ways to measure your dog is to first weigh yourself, then carry the dog and get on the weighing scale. Just don’t forget to deduct your weight from the combined weight of the dog and you! Normal Cavaliers should weigh between 5 to 10 kilos or 12 to 23 pounds.
Once the dog reaches 6 months of age, feed it one main meal for the day and a treat or snack bone in the morning. After the age of one year, the dog will get an adult dog meal once a day and a treat for being a good boy or girl.
Whether you choose to feed your dog store bought commercially available food or cook for it is entirely up to you. There are many dog owners who are choosing to cook the food for their dogs rather than take any risks with commercial dog food. Dogs need a mix of dry and wet food and it is better to provide plenty of fresh meat and fruits. Please don’t ever forget to give your dog a constant supply of fresh drinking water day and night.
Watch portion sizes for your Cavalier King Charles
Cavaliers are prone to Mitral Valve Disease (MVD), but there is no specific food they can eat to eliminate the disease. What you should not do is over-feed your dog as spaniels are prone to obesity and excessive fat increases the work the heart needs to do. Each type of food is different and the amount you need to feed your dog will differ based on the dog’s weight. Foods that contain by-products and corn will make the dog gain weight.
Your Cavalier should never be given chocolate, it can kill the dog. Other foods that should not be given to your dog include onions, cooked small bones, raisins, grapes and spicy food.
Next time we will look at how to crate train your Cavalier King Charles.