Lactating bitch: special features of the diet
In the postpartum period, a lactating bitch is responsible not only for herself, but also for her offspring. Because she needs a lot of energy for this, you need to properly adjust the diet of the new mother.
A lactating bitch needs more nutrients than usual and even more than during pregnancy. After all, the young mother not only feeds herself, but also has to make milk for her puppies, which is very rich in proteins, calcium and energy. All this is very energy consuming. Therefore, the bitch’s energy needs can increase by up to 5,000 kilocalories per day. Since this value varies depending on the breed and size of the animal, you should discuss your bitch’s diet with a veterinarian.
A nursing bitch needs lots of energy
Basically, for a healthy diet, you should also rely on particularly high-quality dog food during the lactation period, so that the dog mama can take good care of her litter without being weakened herself. High-quality dog food usually has a high energy content, so that a nursing bitch does not necessarily have to eat much more of it to meet her increased needs. The new mother could not eat enough of normal food to meet her increased energy needs – if she does, you risk overfeeding her.
Nutrition with moderation
Dry food is almost always recommended for the nursing bitch – provided your four-legged friend tolerates it well. It should be one-third protein and almost as high in fat. It is best to leave food for the nursing bitch throughout the day so that she can help herself at any time. As a guide to proper nutrition, experts say the mama dog should not lose more than ten percent of her body weight while nursing. Once the puppies are weaned, the bitch should return to her normal weight within a month.