Aim to feed the last meal between 7pm and 8pm – this will allow time for digestion before pup goes to bed for the night.
Feeding should be carried out at about the same times each day, but don’t get to particular about feeding at, say, exactly 8pm every day – it’s ok to vary it. If you miss a meal, do not make up for it by feeding double at the next meal time. Pup has a small stomach, remember!
It is not necessary to add extra additives to balanced or complete feeds as these have been carefully formulated to provide the correct balance of protein, oils, minerals etc.
It’s important that a dog is fed from its own bowl or dish. We recommend a stainless steel dish for feeding.
Do not allow vigorous exercise after a meal, it may make pup sick or even worse suffer a twisted gut.
In all circumstances, please do not allow your collie to become overweight. It will shorten life-span and create health problems. If a pup starts missing meals and is losing weight, seek veterinary advice. A young pup should be well fed so that he/she has reserves to fall back on.
A fresh supply of clean drinking water should be available at all times. This is vitally important for dogs that are fed dried food diets, even if pre-soaked.
We prefer to use the ceramic type of water dish as it keeps the water cooler than metal or plastic bowls. Keep the water dish in the same place, so that pup knows where to find it!
Rock Sulphur can be added to the drinking water in hot weather – follow the manufacturers instructions!
If you prefer to change over to a different make of food, it is important to make this a gradual change. This can be done over a period of a few days by mixing the new food in with the serving in increasing ratios until the changeover is completed.
Whichever food you choose, refer to the manufacturers instructions for guidance on the amount suitable for your collie.
Refusing Food/ Loss of Appetite.
A healthy pup should have a good appetite. If you find that pup is turning his nose up at the usual meal, it could be because he’s feeling off colour. Dogs that have a tummy upset instinctively starve themselves to address the problem. Coaxing a young dog to eat who will tell you ‘no’ by turning way from the food when you offer it. Let him be and you’ll probably find that the next day he’ll have loose motions as the problem passes through. Monitor the situation closely and consult your vet if the problem persists.
Of course, it may simply be that he’s latched on to the smell of some chicken or other interesting item! Trying the offer of a small tidbit will confirm whether it’s being fussy or a real loss of appetite. As a general rule, don’t give in to fussy eaters who want you to give them human food – it’s not good for them and will reinforce the unwanted behaviour.
Introduce a bit of variety by mixing a little bit of one of these with the meal from time to time!
Keeping pup on the correct food is the best policy. And, if you are feeding a ‘complete’ dried food, you can always introduce a bit of variety from time to time by mixing in a little something that is good for the dog. Our dogs’ favorites include:
- Tinned Pilchards or Sardines in Tomato sauce
- Tinned Mackerel or Tuna
- Minced Tripe (which can be purchased frozen).
Refusing Food - Young Adults
Its quite a well known phenomena for a young adult to go through a phase of being off their food. They seem hungry enough and interested in eating, but when you put their food down they sniff it and look at you as if to say “I can’t possibly eat that!”
After a couple of days this can become quite disconcerting. Most people will then try and make the meal more interesting, adding tripe or pilchards, or a bit of cooked chicken. If you are sure there is no medical condition underlying the behaviour, then the chances are that they are simply ‘going through it’ and will get back to eating what you put down for them on day three. If you do try adding extras to the food to make it more interesting, be careful that you don’t inadvertently find that the dog has trained you to add extras to the dinner!
Of course, if you are in any doubt, consult your vet.