Obesity can prove to be a major health problem for many Shiba Inus. Therefore, you need to make sure you maintain your dog’s weight so he remains healthy and slim all of its life. Obesity can lead to serious health problems, including joint discomfort, digestive distress, metabolic disorder, heart disease, or back pain. While you may be tempted to give in and feed your dog human food, don’t do it. Instead, prepare a diet from raw dog food recipes and take your Shiba for a walk instead.
Check Your Shiba’s Weight
To see if your Shiba needs to lose weight, feel around his spine and ribs. You should be able to feel the dog’s bones through a thin layer of flesh. If you can see the ribs, he needs more to eat. However, if the bones are hidden under a thick layer of flesh, you need to put your Inu on a reducing diet. If those soulful eyes are causing you to cave in to your Shiba’s requests for treats, you only have yourself to blame for your dog’s weight gain.
To manage your Shiba’s weight, you need to be aware how much you are feeding him. Therefore, get into the practice of measuring his food. Keep a diary – like the record you might keep if you were trying to lose weight yourself. Observe how some of those excess treats could be getting him into trouble. By writing down the information, you can keep track of your Shiba’s snacks and treats and make the appropriate reductions if he is getting too much food.
Next, you will need to figure your Shiba’s ideal weight. Most Shiba Inus weight between 17 and 23 pounds, depending on their height, gender, and age. To ensure your pet’s continued health, you need to keep his weight range in mind.
The Shiba Inu Maintenance Diet
A Shiba Inu is not considered a highly energetic dog, nor is he considered high-maintenance. Therefore, you can keep your dog on a maintenance diet to maintain its weight in a normal range. A maintenance diet means that your dog is not losing or gaining weight, so if you feed the same amount of food each day and keep your dog exercised, he will not become obese.
If you prepare raw dog food recipes for your dog, it will give you a chance to significantly increase its protein. Protein repairs muscles, creates new cells, improves the looks of your dog’s coat, and regulates the Shiba’s endocrine system. By giving your Shiba Inu raw dog food, you will boot up its energy and keep its immune system in check.
The more your Shiba is exercised the more protein it will need. If your dog is older, you can give it less of the nutrient. Protein is the building block of life for good reason. It contains 22 amino acids. By giving your dog the right amount of protein in its diet, it will receive the amino acids it needs to stay healthy and strong.
Carbohydrates, another energy source, produces energy in the form of glucose. However, you have to be careful about giving your Shiba too many carbs because glucose, when produced in high amounts, turns into the fatty deposits that lead to obesity. With that said, you still need to make sure your Shiba gets enough fat. Healthy dietary fats provide energy to the body and supply your dog with the fatty acids that his body cannot produce itself.
Probably the best way to maintain your Shiba’s weight so it stays normal is to talk to your vet. Your dog will need more dietary energy if it is active or if it is a puppy. Additional energy is also needed for pregnant and lactating dogs.
Getting the Right Vitamins and Minerals
While vitamins and minerals may be overlooked, you need to supplement your dog’s diet so it contains the right amount of these elements too. Dogs need minerals, such as calcium, phosphorus, iron, manganese and selenium, and vitamins like A, D, and E. These nutrients are good for your dog’s eye health, motor functions, and brain.
If you do need to put your Shiba on a weight loss plan, you might check with your vet about placing your dog on the Show Dog Diet. This diet features a regular raw meat diet in the morning and a meal that is made up of mostly low-sodium green beans. Include the green beans in your dog’s diet while supplementing the plan a multiple vitamin. You can switch back to a more conventional diet later by cutting your dog’s normal meal size by approximately 10%. Use a low-calorie kibble so your Inu can eat more kibble while consuming fewer calories.
If you also would like to lose weight or stay fit and trim, you will find it fun and helpful to exercise with your Shiba Inu. You and your companion dog can play ball, hike, walk, and jog together. By putting the brakes on your Shiba Inu’s appetite and exercising with your dog, you can ensure that he will continue to remain trim and healthy.
Figuring the Calories
To figure you Shiba’s daily calorie intake, use the following standard formula:
30 x (Your Shiba’s weight) + 70 = the daily calorie intake
For example, let’s say your Shiba weighs 20 pounds. 20 x 30 = 600 + 70 = 670. If you want to maintain your dog’s weight, 670 represents its daily calorie intake. Maybe you want your dog to be lighter. If so, you can use the same formula to determine the calories for reducing your Shiba’s food intake.
While you can use the above formula as a guide, you cannot make it a template. You also need to figure out what and how much you can feed your dog according to its engagement in activities, age, and physical condition.
What You Can Give Your Inu in Fruits and Vegetables
Shibas can eat fruits and veggies as well. Some of the fruits and vegetables you can add to your dog’s diet include bananas (a good source of potassium), green beans, seedless watermelon, sliced apples, cucumbers, and blueberries.
Now that you know a little bit about weight loss and maintenance for your Shiba, you can work with your vet in setting up a meal plan and exercise regimen. If you want to keep your own weight maintained, exercise with your companion dog by walking, jogging, or hiking. It’s the ideal way to forge an owner-dog bond that will keep both of you happy, slim, and active.