WHAT'S THE BEST DOG FOOD FOR A SHIBA INU?
Are you wondering what’s the best dog food for your Shiba Inu? Well, you’ve come to the right place! We believe that to feed your Shiba Inu well, first you need to know all about them. Diet plays a huge role in a dog's health and wellbeing, so be sure to research carefully. The Shiba Inu is a small, lively, and energetic dog breed, with a few particularities that need to be taken into account when it comes to dog food. So, if you're thinking of adopting a Shiba Inu, check out our tips below to help you understand the specific needs of the breed and select the best type of dog food for your furry friend.
Shiba Inu: Specific Dietary Needs
Dog food that doesn’t cater to the nutritional needs of your pooch can lead to health problems, deficiencies, and digestive imbalance. In order to keep your Shiba feeling happy and healthy, you need to provide them with everything they need. Here are some characteristics specific to the Shiba Inu that you should consider when choosing their dog food:
The Shiba Inu is a very lively and energetic dog: From an early age, Shiba Inus are very active and playful. As such, their energy expenditure is quite high, so your Shiba’s dog food will need to provide them with enough energy to last throughout the day.
The Shiba Inu has a thick, mid-length coat: This dog's beautiful fur does not take care of itself! Along with regular brushing, a healthy diet plays a crucial role in maintaining your dog’s gorgeous coat.
This dog breed is prone to digestive troubles: The Shiba Inu is known for its fragile stomach. For digestion to go as smoothly as possible, and for your dog to suffer no discomfort, you will need to provide them with suitable, easy-to-digest dog food.
Dry dog food has many advantages, which is why it’s the type of dog food most often recommended by veterinarians and animal nutrition specialists. Dry dog food is a comprehensive, all-in-one food type, unlike homemade dog food which can be difficult to prepare. It is also usually cheaper than preparing your dog’s meals yourself and ensures a good nutritional balance, provided that the dry food is high quality and suitable for your dog.
What Type of Dog Food Should I Give My Shiba Inu?
Now that you know a little more about your Shiba Inu, you can begin to think about the ideal dog food for this breed. Manufacturers offer a huge selection of dog food in supermarkets, and it can sometimes be difficult to navigate. Be aware that basic requirements, such as minerals and vitamins, are specific to each dog and must appear on the packaging label.
When choosing the ideal dog food for your Shiba Inu, keep an eye out for:
Dog food that effectively meets your Shiba’s energy requirements: To provide your dog with all the energy they may need during the day, their dog food must contain a sufficient amount of protein, as well as a controlled amount of fat. It’s important to remember that the Shiba Inu is a small dog that can easily gain weight.
Dog food that promotes good skin and coat health: Look for food with a high level of amino acids and Omega-3 and -6 fatty acids to effectively preserve the health of your dog's skin and coat. You can also find Omega fatty acids in food supplements for dogs, like quality fish oil. These should, of course, be accompanied by regular brushing.
Dog food that facilitates digestion: The Shiba Inu has a delicate stomach, so opt for dog food with rice as the sole source of starch. Prebiotics are also good for maintaining the intestinal flora, which helps improve digestion.
The Hector Kitchen Motto
Every dog is unique, so their diet should be too!
We can’t stress it enough: each dog has their own specific dietary needs. And these recommendations are not the only things to take into account when choosing the best dog food for your Shiba Inu. Your dog’s age, weight, activity level, and any potential or reported diseases are equally important factors. No one is better qualified than an animal nutrition specialist to help you create a suitable diet for your Shiba Inu.
How Often Should I Feed My Shiba Inu?
Now you’ve chosen the perfect dog food for your Shiba Inu, you need to learn how often to feed them. To feed your dog well, there are certain key rules to follow. For example, keep in mind that eating too much or too quickly can cause digestive problems for your dog, such as gas. Follow these simple tips to best feed your Shiba Inu:
Give your Shiba Inu their meals at the same, fixed time each day in a quiet place, away from possible sources of distraction: It's important to create a pleasant environment for your dog’s mealtimes, as this facilitates digestion and promotes a balanced diet.
Divide your dog’s daily food ration into two or three small meals: This way, you distribute your Shiba’s food throughout the day and avoid overloading their digestive capacities.
Give your Shiba the correct amount of dog food: This will vary according to different factors, such as your dog's age, weight, and activity level (normal or sustained). Ask your vet or an animal nutritionist expert to help you determine the right amount of food for your dog.
Treats: Offer your Shiba Inu a healthy dog treat from time to time. Little pieces of fruit or cooked vegetables are a great, natural option! However, be careful with this if your dog tends to gain weight easily.
Toxic foods: Some foods are toxic to dogs and should be forbidden. Cold meats, chocolate, onion, garlic and sugar are especially dangerous for dogs. Chicken and rabbit bones are also not recommended. As always, if you’re not sure, seek advice from your vet.
Finally, remember that hydration is essential and plays a significant role in your Shiba Inu’s health. If your dog doesn’t drink enough, this can lead to health concerns, such as urinary tract infections. Make sure you fill your dog’s bowl with fresh water every day. If you want to encourage your Shiba Inu to drink more water, get creative! Try placing a few ice cubes in the water bowl to tempt your dog to drink.
Shiba Inu: Characteristics of the Breed
A Brief History of the Shiba Inu
The Shiba Inu is an ancient, primitive dog breed that originated in Japan and was originally bred and developed as a hunting dog for small birds and game. In the late 19th century, however, Western dog breeds were imported to Japan and crossed with the Shiba Inu until almost no pure Shiba remained. After the war in 1928, a programme was developed by Japanese breeders to preserve the original pure breed.
The first Japanese breed standard was established in 1934 and, in 1936, the Shiba Inu was recognised as a "Natural Monument of Japan". The breed was definitively recognised by the World Canine Organisation (FCI) in 1964.
Shiba Inu Temperament
The Shiba Inu is an independent, spirited dog breed. These smart doggies won’t trust just anyone; trust is to be earned! Shibas are often compared to foxes due to both their appearance and intelligent nature. However, if well trained and socialised from an early age, the Shiba Inu shows great loyalty to its master, of whom it can be very protective. These doggies are also very playful and enjoy the company of children.
Shiba Inu Health Issues
The Shiba Inu is a robust and resistant dog breed that, thanks to its primitive nature, is not predisposed to many health issues. However, the breed is subject to digestive concerns and allergies.
Diet plays a huge role in your Shiba Inu's health, which is why it’s so important to pay attention to what your pet eats. Any change in your dog’s behaviour or coat, or something like a suspicious-looking stool, should alert you to a possible food imbalance, so keep an eye out!
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