How to Choose the Best Dog Food for Neapolitan Mastiff Puppies
The Neapolitan Mastiff puppy is a wrinkly ball of fun. Loving and affectionate to its family members, the Neapolitan Mastiff’s imposing appearance belies the heart of a true gentle giant.
A breed believed to trace its roots back thousands of years ago to ancient Tibet, the Neapolitan Mastiff was originally intended to function as a guardian of its owner’s property and a protector in battle. In time, the breed was further developed in Naples, Italy, where the breeder’s primary intent was to create a dog that was loyal, loving, and gentle with its family and friends and that also bore a unique physical characteristic: weighty, wrinkled skin to provide protection for the dog when under attack at war.
The Neapolitan Mastiff pup is sometimes affectionately referred to simply as a “Neo.” This charming breed can reach up to 200 pounds in total weight. A dog breed that thrives on close companionship with its owner, the Neapolitan Mastiff puppy firmly believes it is a lap dog, a trait that can be problematic for its family when the pup is fully grown.
A breed that is known for being quite messy; even as puppies, Neapolitan Mastiffs drool a lot, particularly after eating or drinking. In addition to this, the breed can be predisposed to regular flatulence.
Not an overly energetic breed, the Neapolitan Mastiff puppy does well with a daily walk of average length. A lover of food, this pup can become overweight if not sufficiently exercised or fed too much. Free feeding the Neapolitan Mastiff puppy is strongly discouraged.
A dog breed that typically enjoys good health, there are several genetic conditions that can befall the Neapolitan Mastiff. Among the most common problems affecting the breed are bloat, hip and elbow dysplasia, eye problems, and overheating. Though diet alone cannot cure genetic disease, it can lay an excellent foundation for future health. The best dog foods for Neapolitan Mastiff puppies are large breed puppy formulations that include supplements to support eye and joint health.
Bloat is a life-threatening problem that can affect many large breed dogs. At present, experts do not know what factors must combine to result in this condition. It is commonly accepted that eating too rapidly or too much may play a contributing role. It is recommended that the Neapolitan Mastiff puppy be fed a large breed puppy food that contains big kibble pieces as this helps to prevent the issues associated with bloat.
As a large breed pup, the Neapolitan Mastiff has a very long maturation rate. To prevent structural problems from too rapid a growth rate, this pup should be fed a large breed puppy formulation until it reaches one year of age or 75 percent its full adult size. Once these milestones have been met, the dog should be transitioned to an appropriate adult diet.
The best dog foods for Neapolitan Mastiff puppies are comprised of approximately 22 percent protein and 8 percent fat. In addition to this, the ideal diet for growing pups should have the proper proportions of calcium to phosphorus, an amount rated as 1.2 parts of calcium for each part of phosphorus.
Choosing the Correct Calorie Count for Neapolitan Mastiff Puppies
The Neapolitan Mastiff puppy is a carnivore, and thus, does best on a diet that is based on lean, meat-based protein and that is well-balanced to support optimal wellness as it grows. Trying to figure out how much of a diet to feed a pup can seem like a daunting task. Fortunately, the best dog foods for Neapolitan Mastiff puppies include suggested serving sizes based on age and weight. As the pup grows, these amounts can be increased or decreased until the proper amount per serving is found.
The Neapolitan Mastiff puppy enjoys food and will overeat if given the opportunity to do so. Since this breed can be predisposed to hip and elbow problems, it is vitally important that this pup remain at a healthy body weight. To achieve this, all intake should be carefully measured and all meal times and treats monitored.
Dietary Requirements for Neapolitan Mastiff Puppy Foods
The Neapolitan Mastiff puppy requires a diet that prioritizes the use of lean, meat-based proteins. The best dog foods for Neapolitan Mastiff puppies include a whole meat or meat meal as their foundational ingredient. By-products are commonly utilized in commercial dog foods as a protein source. These are often taken from inferior cuts of an animal that are more difficult for dogs to process and utilize effectively, and thus, foods containing them are best avoided.
Plant proteins such as soy, corn, and wheat, are common allergens for many dogs. Diets utilizing these protein sources are best left on the shelf. In similar fashion, chemicals, additives, fillers, preservatives, artificial flavors, and colors are sometimes added to a food to improve its shelf life and appearance. These ingredients offer no nutritional benefit to the Neapolitan Mastiff pup.
Carbohydrates furnish pups with the antioxidants and fiber they need for good digestion and a healthy immune system. These nutrients can be found in whole grains, fruits, or vegetables.
Healthy fats are an important part of every Neapolitan Mastiff puppy’s diet, fuelling coat and skin health, brain and eye development, and healthy energy reserves. The ideal source for these fats is animal-based and includes such foods as chicken fat and oily fish. Some plant-based oils offer excellent alternatives, providing bountiful amounts of these essential fatty acids.
Things to Look for in the Best Dog Food for Neapolitan Mastiff Puppies
Here is a basic list of the most important things to look for in the best dog food for a Neapolitan Mastiff puppy:
Lean, meat-based proteins heading up the ingredients list
The best dog foods for the Neapolitan Mastiff puppy list a whole meat or meat meal as their main ingredient. By-products and plant proteins such as soy, corn, and wheat are of lesser quality and foods containing them are best avoided.
Prepared without the addition of chemicals, flavorings, fillers, or mystery ingredients
Chemicals, fillers, artificial flavorings and colorings, and mystery ingredients provide no nutritional benefit to a growing Neapolitan Mastiff puppy. Diets containing any of these items are best left on the shelf.
Enriched with probiotics and helpful supplements
The most beneficial supplements for a Neapolitan Mastiff puppy are prebiotics, probiotics, glucosamine, and chondroitin.
Meets AAFCO nutritional requirements for a complete and balanced food
All foods appropriate for the Neapolitan Mastiff puppy should bear the AAFCO seal of approval, indicating it meets the standards for a complete and balanced food.