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Category Archives: Diet

What to do if your dog is overweight


Do you have a chubby Collie? Is your Puli looking a little roly-poly? You’re not alone: canine obesity is a common problem. Vet Marc Abraham explains the tell-tale signs of an overweight dog and offers some tips getting your pet in shape

You’ve probably heard about the ‘obesity crisis’ in Britain, but you may not be aware that it is as much of a problem among our canine population as it is in humans.

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Five things you should never feed your dog

Chocolate: don't feed this to your dog

Here’s PetPeople vet Alison Logan’s top five no-nos when it comes to your dog’s diet:

1. Chocolate should never be given to dogs, and must be safely stored out of their reach. Dogs are very sensitive to the theobromine found in chocolate because they can’t break it down efficiently. Signs of toxicity occur within twelve hours of eating the chocolate, and include diarrhoea, vomiting, excitement, seizures and coma. The amount of chocolate eaten to cause a problem depends on both the size of the dog and the level of theobromine found in the chocolate. The theobromine dose increases with the cocoa level, so cocoa beans and powder, dark and continental chocolate have higher levels of theobromine than milk chocolate, and white chocolate has the lowest.

2. Dogs are really partial to cat food, primarily because of the high protein content, but it is no good for them in the long term. They are different species

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Four canine ‘superfood’ for 2012

Puppy feeding

We’ve asked vet and nutrition columnist Alison Logan for her top “superfood” recommendations to help get your dog fit in 2012. The best news of all? A lot of them cost nothing…

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Diet: are you feeding your rabbits the right way? Read this to be absolutely sure


With digestive system disorders so common in rabbits, it’s important to feed them the right diet. Here are vet Alison Logan’s essential recommendations

Grass – but make him work for it
Letting your rabbit graze on your lawn not only provides him with nutrition, but also mental stimulation and exercise. No rabbit should spend all his time in a hutch. Do not, however, be tempted to feed grass mowings, which may have started to ferment.

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Can’t eat, won’t eat? Why your pet may be off its food

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Julie Hunt reports on what steps to take when your beloved pet starts refusing its food. From the Petpeople magazine archive You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink, goes the old saying. But how …

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How to make a tasty Christmas dinner for your dog


We’ve invited writer Elaine Everest, author of hit book Canine Cuisine (£8.99, How To Books) to give us this extra-special recipe for a festive meal for your dog. Hope your dog likes it! Ingredients             …

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Debate: should dogs only eat raw meat? Part 2


Last week, Dr Ian Billinghurst told us about his view that dogs should only eat a Biologically Appropriate Raw Food (BARF) diet. Now here’s the other side of the argument, from vet Brian Faulkner

“The BARF diet is based on the assumption that dogs are the same as their ancestors: wolves. But they are a domesticated species with different DNA to wolves; a distinction going back many thousands of years.

Furthermore, all dogs are not the same. A Great Dane or a St Bernard may grow more in one week than a Yorkshire Terrier will grow in its whole life. The nutritional requirement of these dogs is significantly different.

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Debate: should dogs only eat raw meat? Part 1


The use of Biologically Appropriate Raw Food (BARF) – a simple diet of raw meat and bones – is dividing vets worldwide: some swear by it, while others advocate caution. In this first of two posts, BARF-devotee Dr Ian Billinghurst tells us why it works for him.

“I believe that the healthiest diet for dogs and cats is a natural one. Raw meat, bones, vegetables and organ meats – anything that mimics the diet of a wild or feral animal is ideal. I call this the Biologically Appropriate Raw Food (BARF) diet and it’s what our cats and dogs have evolved to eat.

My views come from almost 35 years as a practice vet, witnessing the harm that commercially produced food can do to pets. It also comes from seeing at first han

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Is my rabbit eating too much?

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Q: My rabbit is looking a wee bit chubby. I was wondering if this is because we are letting him on the lawn to eat grass? A: Or could it be that you have been feeding him a little bit …

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What is the best dog training reward?

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Q: I’m going to begin training my dog soon. Which foods are best to use as rewards during training? A:  I always recommend using the lowest-value treats that your dog will work for. Using part of your dog’s daily dry-food …

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