Pets and Schedules
Is your pup on a regular daily schedule? I recently picked up a couple of pups for boarding and asked the owner what their schedule was for eating. I was surprised to hear that a large bowl of kibble was out all the time and the pups just ate when they wanted.
While this may be a simple and easy solution for a pet owner, it’s certainly not the healthiest or best solution for your pets.
Just like humans, pets will live their happiest and healthiest lives if they are on a regular schedule. A schedule for your pet should not only include regular feeding times, but should also include walks, play time and down time.
It is suggested that, on average, you should feed your pet twice a day. However, young puppies generally need to be fed three times a day while they are growing and developing. Once your pup is mature, twice a day is generally sufficient with the food measured for each feeding to help maintain a healthy weight.
As your pet ages and he is getting less exercise, it may be advisable to feed your pup a little less or, alternatively, feed him only once a day.
This being said, if your pup is on any type of medication or has a medical condition, such as diabetes, where it is imperative to keep sugar levels constant, then the routine should be altered accordingly. In cases like this, it’s always important to go on the advice of your vet.
When trying to get your furry friend on a regular and consistent schedule, try to set times for feeding and walking which will work with your daily routine.
Ideally you should feed your pet breakfast, allow at least fifteen minutes for digestion, and then take your pup for a walk so that he can relieve himself. The same thing should happen in the evening when feeding dinner.
This regular routine will encourage your pup to look forward to his meals and his exercise time, thus keeping him happy. It will also get your pup on a regular schedule to relieve himself and, this in turn, will help with potty training and less accidents.
When setting up a regular schedule with your pup, don’t get to the point whereby you change your whole lifestyle to revolve around your pet and he makes demands on you for feeding and walking. But instead try to strive for a certain amount of consistency each day. Sometimes things come up that we can’t control and your schedule may be thrown out of whack, but things will generally revert back to normal quickly.
Keeping your furry friend on a fairly regular routine including down time in a crate, play time, indoors or outdoors, and a consistent sleeping schedule will make for a happy and healthy pet and, that in turn, will keep you a very happy pet owner.