This is a topic very close to our heart at My Beagle Training.com because the right food can be a total game changer for a beagle: it means radiant health and a longer and happier life. The wrong food, unfortunately, deprives you of the joy of having your beagle friend around for long and can even affect their behavior. In addition, beagles have a strong tendency to get overweight, which leads to other diseases, such as diabetes, and strains their joints and ligaments.
In this blog post we are going to cover the nutritional requirements of your beagle at the different stages of their lives; what food is the right food (and what not to give to your beagle EVER) and how often to feed them. After reading this brief article you will have a good plan and you will be well-prepared.
When should you start with solid food and how often?
Up to their eighth week of age, the puppies stay with their mother and the rest of the litter. Solid food is introduced in weeks 4 to 5 and homemade food is highly recommended.
By week 8 to 10 when you take your puppy home, your beagle should already be used to solid food and it is a good idea to stick to a 3-meal-per-day schedule.
When they are 6 months to 1 year old, they only need 2 meals a day and later on, just one. As soon as your beagle reaches the age of 2 years, you have an adult dog and you should start checking out their diet to avoid weight problems.
What to feed your beagle? The dilemma is to buy or not to buy.
Food is actually one of the first very serious decisions to make because of the consequences that implies. If you thought that a trip to the supermarket would cut it, you would need to think again.
Commercial dog food is not as nutritious as we would wish it were. Not only the nutrients are not there and it is just full of empty filler, but it also contains elements that are really not healthy for your dog, such as conservatives, additives and colorants.
If you still decide that you are going to get commercial dog food, try to get the best possible quality.
Don’t despair. There are two more alternatives to consider. Yes, two.
Of course, homemade food is one of them. And, it doesn’t need to be difficult; because the good news is that your beagle is not a child who requires a variety in their menu. They will happily eat whatever you serve. You just need clear guidelines of what to buy to make sure you are meeting the nutritional requirements of your dog at every stage of their development and a plan.
The third alternative is dog food at your organic pet store. This could be the best solution if you can afford it, since you can get natural freshly made food without having to do the work.
To make your final decision, this video about commercial dog food is a must.
Components of the right diet
40% good meat
(This means that the quality is good. You can always buy in bulk, use some of the meat for your family and reserve some for your dog).
30% vegetables (and fruits)
(Stick to fibrous but non gassy veggies, fruits like apples and whole grains. carrots are always good).
(Rice and pasta will do the trick).
What NOT to feed your beagle
- Human food
Full of salt, sugar, flavoring, spices and additive, your beagle won’t benefit from eating human food. Don’t give in EVER, because the first time you give in you create a habit very difficult to correct and you will always have your dog begging for food.
- Garlic, onions, chocolate, mushrooms, raw salmon, caffeine, fish with bones and gassy food in general
BONUS TIP – In the wild, dogs work for their food. You can also make your beagle work for theirs, by exercising them before eating, making them practice their commands and tricks and requiring that they sit and wait for their food bowl. You can also play hiding and seeking games by hiding their food bowls or treats.