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How To Use a Dog Food Calculator?

Confused dog with tilted head, gazing directly into the camera

Would you like your dog to be happy and energetic, have a full, shiny coat and live a long healthy life? Then it is important to feed them the right amount of food daily. One way to do just that is by using a dog food calculator. Dog food calculators are pretty easy to use, and you can find a number of them online. When you use a dog food calculator, there are a few things that you need to keep in mind.

While food calculators are easy to use, remember that dog food calculators only estimate the amount of food that your dog needs. You’ll need to observe your dog’s reaction including any weight changes. And the numbers a calculator provides aren’t helpful unless you measure their food accurately and factor in any treats and table scraps.

Food calculators should be used as a good way to estimate the amount of food to give your doggo each day.

Information that Dog Food Calculators Use

Basically, what a dog food calculator does is put your dog’s information into an equation to calculate the number of calories that you should be feeding your dog daily. Some use more information about your dog than others. So if you use different calculators, you will come up with different results; however, they all should be similar.

Some information that you may need to provide about your dog includes:

  • Current Weight
  • Breed
  • Gender
  • Age
  • Activity Level
  • Underweight/Normal/Overweight
  • Spay/Neuter Status
  • Pregnant/Nursing
  • Working/Non-Working

This information is related to how many calories they burn each day. Your dog food packaging should include information about how many calories are in what volume or weight of food.

Follow the Instructions

Various dog food calculators are set up in a variety of ways, so you need to enter your dog’s information according to the instructions. Remember, if you don’t follow the instructions correctly, you won’t have an accurate estimate on the amount to feed your doggo.

Measure Food Accurately

Make sure that you use a measuring cup when you are portioning out your dog’s food. Too many people guestimate instead of measuring, and they end up over or underfeeding their dog.

Limit Treats

Why bother to calculate and measure your doggo’s food if you are going to lavish them with treats and table scraps? If you are giving your dog either, make sure that you deduct the calories from the total food allotment.

Weigh Them Regularly

It is important to keep your dog near their ideal weight. Packing too many pounds or too few can cause health problems, such as

  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Hypertension
  • Joint pain
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Urinary bladder stones

Low weight or quick loss of weight can be a sign of health problems that need to be addressed by your vet.

Limitations of Dog Food Calculators

Food calculators only measure the calories that your dog needs daily–they have nothing to do with the nutrients that your furry pal needs to to stay happy and healthy. So make sure that you are feeding your forever friend a quality dog food that contains the right balance of protein, carbs, fat and fibre, along with the needed vitamins and micronutrients they need to build a strong and healthy body.

Keep your dog healthy by feeding them the right amount of food each day and giving them enough exercise, and the two of you will have many happy years of companionship to look forward to!