This is the single most significant part of raising this dog to its optimum health and longevity! A breeder can offer you the best blood lines and the most healthy pup from health cleared elders and grandparents on back for generations but if you over feed or feed this dog improperly he/she will get Too Big, die early of coronary disease, have skin allergies, finish up with hip and patella Problems from carrying too much weight or will contract cancer.
Yes and No’s below..to protect your puppy:
Do not make or expect children to be fully and accountable for the care of this dog. Adults take responsibility and supervise the care for the dog.
Do not feed between meal with snacks or treats. If you’re coaching the dog you need to use treats but they count against the amount of the next meal. Don’t let the kids feed this dog nibbles, playtime, love and attention should be the offered treat.
Until the dog is 5 months old he gets fed 3 times a day with NO in between meal treats apart from small quantities of coaching treats.
After 5 months of age the dog is reduced down to two meals each day and that is what he gets for the remainder of his life. Feed twice a day. It keeps their blood sugar on an even keel and they generally tend to be more settled and quiet.
At no time in a Cavalier’s life should he get more than one to one and 1/2 cups of food per day TOTAL – spread over the 2 meals! His kibble (the dry Food), table scraps in his kibble and everything mixed together should never achieve more than 1 CUP of food TOTAL for the whole day. In a number of cases 1 cup of food is TOO much for a given dog. Some dogs have a lover basal metabolism and need LESS than 1 cup each day to keep trim. It is the rare Cavalier that is so active to need 1 1/2 cups of food. Spayed/Fixed dogs need less food!! The idea is to keep the dog lean (not skinny) and never let him get fat. They are never to go over 20 pounds no matter what their bone structure is. If you can gently push where their ribs are and you can not feel your dogs ribs he is too fat. The larger boned males can get up to 20 pounds but only after they are adults”NOT AS PUPPIES!!! The undeniable fact that he’s got a massive frame does not mean that he/she should ever carry more than 20 pounds of weight, ever. There’s no excuse for a fat dog. It is bad for THEIR HEART!!
Don’t keep food down all of the time for them to pick at. That is called”Free Feeding”. This form of feeding will either produce an especially fat dog or a very underfed dog. They are malnourished because they never put up a sufficient appetite to truly eat the correct quantity needed. I know it sounds rather like a contradiction but I’ve seen it in numerous different dogs. Free feeding usually makes picky eating, thin Cavaliers.
Some puppies ARE PICKEY EATERS. Add a spoon of Cottage Cheese or shredded chicken to the moistened (not dunked) dog kibble and leave it down for sixty minutes only (in a confined area-either in their crate with the door closed or in their exercise pen) with no distractions and whatever the young dog does not eat take away after 1 hour.
If you ever change the puppy or dog food please change the food slowly over about a week so they don’t get diarrhea. If you have any questions you should contact your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breeder.