How to Choose the Best Dog Food for Irish Wolfhound Puppies
The distinguished Irish Wolfhound makes for an adorable little puppy. A fuzzy ball of wiry fur, this delightful little pup is an affectionate and loving family companion.
A pup with only moderate activity needs, the Irish Wolfhound puppy traces its history back as far as 400 B.C. A hunting breed, the Irish Wolfhound originally was put to work accompanying its owner on hunts for wolves, a job at which it excelled.
The Irish Wolfhound puppy is extremely gentle by nature, making it well-suited to life with children. However, care must be taken that the Irish Wolfhound puppy does not overwhelm kids due to its massive size.
Unfortunately, giant breed dogs suffer from very short life expectancies, and sadly, this is also the case for the Irish Wolfhound. The average life span for this sweet natured breed is 6-8 years.
As with all dog breeds, the Irish Wolfhound is prone to many different inherited ailments. Sadly, the breed’s immense size makes it especially prone to certain illnesses. Thankfully, a premium quality diet can help support health and wellness in the Irish Wolfhound puppy and can even assist with keeping certain health problems at bay for a time.
The main health conditions that can befall Irish Wolfhound puppies include:
- Hip and elbow dysplasia
- Anesthesia sensitivity
- Bone cancer
- Dilated cardiomyopathy
- Fibrocartilaginous embolic myelopathy
- Osteochondrosis dissecans
- Portosystemic shunt
- Progressive retinal atrophy
Choosing the Correct Calorie Count for Irish Wolfhound Puppies
Determining the amount of food to feed an Irish Wolfhound puppy can be a daunting task. It is always a good idea to use the suggested serving size on the bag of food as a starting point. This portion can be adjusted as needed until the proper amount is found. The dog’s weight and appetite will serve as helpful guides.
Though the breed is not typically prone to weight gain, it is a good idea to always measure and monitor all intake. Free feeding is strong discouraged.
Since the Irish Wolfhound puppy is naturally predisposed to bloat, it is important to feed a puppy food that has been designed specifically with large and giant breeds in mind. These pieces of kibble are larger thus naturally encourage slower eating. Though it is not yet known what factors must combine to result in bloat, experts generally agree that eating too much and/or too quickly may be contributing causes.
Large and giant breed puppies like the Irish Wolfhound have a much longer period leading up to full maturity. With this in mind, this breed should be fed the best dog food for Irish Wolfhound puppies only until the breed reaches one year of age or 75 percent of its full adult size. After this, the breed should be transitioned to an appropriate adult diet.
Most Irish Wolfhounds do not reach full maturity until the dog is three years of age.
One of the most critical elements to look for in a diet for the Irish Wolfhound puppy is that the correct ratio of calcium to phosphorus is included. This is a vital support to encourage the proper rate of bone growth. The proper proportions of these nutrients are 1.2 parts calcium for each part of phosphorus.
As a general rule of thumb, Irish Wolfhound puppies should be fed a high quality diet that contains a minimum of 22 percent protein and 8 percent fat.
Dietary Requirements for Irish Wolfhound Puppy Foods
Irish Wolfhound puppies need a diet based on a lean meat-based protein to thrive. Whole meats are the best option, but meat meals also offer all of the vital amino acids this breed needs to enjoy excellent health.
Experts agree that by-products and plant-based proteins such as corn, wheat, and soy do not contain enough nutritional value to be of benefit to the developing puppy. The best dog foods for Irish Wolfhound puppies also avoid such poor quality additives as artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives.
Irish Wolfhound puppies are not prone to allergies, and thus, can enjoy a diet that contains whole grains or fruits and vegetables without suffering any ill effects. The best choices for carbohydrates in a diet for the Irish Wolfhound puppy are foods that are high in dietary fiber and antioxidants to support good digestion and a strong immune system.
Healthy fats are a critical part of any exceptional quality diet for the Irish Wolfhound puppy. These help provide puppies with the daily energy they need and also provide vital support for many systems including coat and skin health and eye and cognitive development. These fats are best obtained from animal sources including chicken fat and oily fish like mackerel, herring, salmon, sardines, and anchovies.
Supplements added to an excellent food help to make it more efficient and well-rounded. The most beneficial supplements to look for to boost the health of the Irish Wolfhound puppy are glucosamine, chondroitin, prebiotics, and probiotics.
Things to Look for in the Best Dog Food for Irish Wolfhound Puppies
Here is a basic list of the most important things to look for in a food for an Irish Wolfhound puppy:
- Whole proteins heading up the ingredients list
- Prepared without the addition of chemicals, flavorings, fillers, or mystery ingredients
- Enriched with probiotics and helpful supplements
- Meets AAFCO nutritional requirements for a complete and balanced food
- Includes the correct rate of calcium to phosphorus to support a healthy rate of bone growth