Chihuahuas are cute little dogs, one of the smallest breeds out there. Loyal, intelligent and feisty, these little creatures are highly energetic. In order to keep your Chihuahua healthy and strong, not only do you need to provide him with regular exercise, but you also need to make sure he eats a proper and well-balanced diet. Like all dogs, Chihuahuas also have very specific nutritional requirements that must be met through proper dieting. Finding the best dog food for Chihuahuas can be quite tough. In this article we will discuss the nutritional needs of your little buddy and some of the top quality dog foods that will help meet those requirements.
Diet Needs of Chihuahuas
Toy breeds like the Chihuahua have a fast metabolism and they burn calories much faster than larger breeds, at almost three times the rate of a large dog. This may lead to problems if you don’t understand how much energy your dog is burning. So it is very easy to underfeed or overfeed these little dogs. Moreover, since the Chihuahuas have smaller tummies, it is easier to lose track of his food intake. So it is very important to do some calorie counting while feeding your Chihuahua. Chihuahuas need 40-50 calories per day for every pound of body weight. So a moderately active 5 lbs Chihuahua typically requires 200-250 calories per day.
While purchasing dog food, look for one that has at least 25% protein. Older dogs require even more protein. So the trick is to find a food with good taste and having the right protein-to-calorie ratio. As with any dog food, it is important to ensure that the protein comes from meat and meal, without using any byproducts. Lean meats such as bison, chicken, venison and fish are all good for your dog. Since chihuahuas are prone to hypoglycemia, you need to include good, complex carbohydrates such as sweet potatoes or brown rice in his diet. Providing him some good fats will help maintain a healthy coat. Lastly, giving your dog plenty of fruits and veggies provides him with the much needed vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
Given below are some of the best dog foods that you can consider buying for your chihuahua:
Orijen Adult Dry Dog Food
This is probably one of the best dog foods for your chihuahua as it contains a high protein content of about 80%, all of which comes from various high-quality meats such as free-run chicken, eggs and fish caught in the wild. A great thing about this food is that it doesn’t contain any preservatives whatsoever. In addition to meat, the food also contains high-quality fruits and vegetables, like juniper berries, marigold flowers and kelp.
Natural Choice Wholesome Essentials Small Breed
Although this dog food contains some essential ingredients that are really healthy, it is short on a wide range of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. Most of the calories in the food comes from brown rice, chicken, and oats. However, it contains lesser amount of fruits, vegetables and fats, when compared to many other dog foods. Still this is a great option that contains high-quality ingredients. As for fruits and veggies, you can always add them to your pup’s diet in other ways.
Wellness Healthy Weight for Toy Breeds
The Wellness brand is amazingly rich in a variety of good stuff. The Wellness Healthy Weight for Toy Breeds contains chicken, turkey, barley, brown rice, peas, tomato, oatmeal, flaxseed and many other awesome ingredients. Chicken fat and flaxseed oil in the food offers plenty of fat, which helps keep your dog’s coat healthy and shiny. It is a great option for hypoallergenic Chihuahuas, as it has no corn, wheat, soy or animal byproducts.
Choosing a good dog food can sometimes be tough, especially if you are not familiar with the basic nutritional requirements of your dog. Feeding your Chihuahua a high-quality diet is very important as otherwise it can lead to a variety of health problems such as diabetes, obesity and dental problems. If you are having a difficult time finding the perfect dog food for your Chihuahua, consider buying any of the top recommended brands of dog food reviewed above.
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