Special Nutritional Needs for Dogs

What Should I Feed an Overweight Dog?

Weight control is accomplished by maintaining the required dietary nutrients while reducing caloric intake to the level necessary for metabolic energy demands. This is done by feeding recommended portions at least twice a day and weighing the dog on a regular basis to monitor weight loss.

Because dogs metabolize differently and have different activity levels, it might be necessary to adjust the amount fed several times. Keep in mind that it will take a lot longer for a 15-pound dog to lose one pound than it would a 200-pound person. Keep things in perspective and be patient. Our reduced fat and weight control products, such as IAMS® ProActive Health™ Adult Weight Control, are recommended for overweight adult dogs. Before putting your dog on a weight-loss program, however, it is always a good idea to consult with a veterinarian.

Do You Have Products for Older Dogs?

We offer foods for older dogs that help address the special lifestyle changes associated with aging. As dogs grow older, activity levels often decrease and muscle mass diminishes. These changes can result in the need for a product with fewer calories and more protein. In addition, older dogs also might prefer a food that is easy to chew. Products such as IAMS PROACTIVE HEALTH™ MATURE ADULT LARGE BREED are well suited to meet the nutritional needs of older dogs.

Do You Have a Hypoallergenic Dog Food?

Allergies are unique to each individual animal, so no one food could be considered truly hypoallergenic. Depending on what allergies a pet has, switching to a diet that contains highly digestible proteins sometimes can help. We have several products that address different allergic symptoms in dogs. They are available exclusively from veterinarians and have been used effectively in the nutritional management of allergy symptoms.

Can Your Foods Be Fed to a Dog with Diabetes?

The diet for a diabetic dog should be low in simple sugars and be the same composition every day. Our products meet these criteria. No sugars are added, and energy is supplied through fat, complex carbohydrates, and protein. Our foods are fixed formulas, which means the food does not change from one batch to another.

Our veterinary nutritional weight-maintenance formula has been specially formulated with unique ingredients for dietary management of dogs with impaired glucose metabolism. It is available exclusively from veterinarians. Remember that before changing a diabetic dog to a different diet, it is always important to discuss the change with a veterinarian.

Veterinary-exclusive products include statements such as, "This product is intended for intermittent feeding only" and "Use only as directed by your veterinarian."

What Should I Feed a Pregnant Dog During Early and Mid-Gestation?

When selecting a food for a pregnant dog, you must take into consideration her condition and weight. Because gestation places additional nutrient demands on the body, a food that contains optimum amounts of protein and fat is recommended.

What Should I Feed a Pregnant Dog During Late Gestation and Throughout Lactation?

Late gestation and lactation are some of the most stressful times in a dog’s life. Dogs need considerably more nutrition during these times because fetal growth requirements are very high and a mother’s milk must meet the nutrition needs of her litter.

Generally, a pregnant dog should be fed approximately 125 to 150% of her normal amount during late gestation, and she can be fed free choice (as much as she wants) throughout lactation. After the puppies are weaned, and the mother is back to her normal weight, she can be transitioned back to her maintenance diet.

How Can I Learn More About Pet Nutrition?

The answers to these and other questions about pet nutrition are available by calling the IAMS Customer Service Center toll-free at 1-800-863-4267.