How to Choose the Best Dog Food for Portuguese Water Dogs
The Portuguese Water dog is an active working breed that traces its roots to the Atlantic coast where it served alongside its owners to assist with the catching of fish, retrieval of lost items, and transmission of messages between fishing vessels. Of medium build, the Portuguese Water Dog is easily recognizable by its plush, curly coat.
A dog known by several different names including Cao de Agua and Portuguese Fishing Dog, this delightful pooch is well renowned for its cool, steady head and innate intelligence. A breed that loves the water, the Portuguese Water Dog makes an excellent swimmer because of one unique physical trait: its webbed feet.
The Portuguese Water Dog is sociable, happy, and always eager to take on an adventure. A breed that enjoys learning new skills, the Portuguese Water Dog is a joy to train and excels at many different activities including obedience, agility, Rally, tracking, scent detection, and therapy work.
A dog with high activity requirements, the Portuguese Water Dog, a dog sometimes affectionately referred to as a Portie, needs regular daily exercise, whether by land or by sea. If sufficiently exercised and not overfed, owners need not fear their dog becoming overweight. However, it is still not a good idea to allow this dog type to free feed.
A low shedding dog, the Portuguese Water Dog is a good choice for families with allergies to pet hair and dander.
As with all dog breeds, there are a few health problems the Portuguese Water Dog is naturally predisposed to developing. These include GM1 storage disease, hip dysplasia, distichiasis, Addison’s disease, juvenile cardiomyopathy, and progressive retinal atrophy. To help support optimal health and wellness in the Portuguese Water Dog, it is a good idea for owners to select a diet that includes supplements that support eye, joint, and cardiac functionality such as glucosamine, chondroitin, taurine, DHA and ARA.
The best dog foods for Portuguese Water Dogs contain a minimum of 18 percent protein and 5 percent fat.
Choosing the Correct Calorie Count for Portuguese Water Dogs
A highly energetic pooch, the Portuguese Water Dog needs a high performance food that is well-balanced and comprised of exceptional quality ingredients to achieve optimal health and wellness. Once the food has been selected, it is then time to try to understand how much of a diet that a dog needs each day to maintain a healthy body weight. The best dog foods for Portuguese Water Dogs list suggested serving sizes based on age, weight, and sometimes breed on their packaging. These are an excellent starting point that can be adjusted until the proper amount per meal is found.
Though the Portuguese Water Dog is an active pooch and is unlikely to become overweight, experts agree that this dog type should not be free fed. To attain and sustain the ideal body condition, all food should be measured and all intake monitored. For busy breeds like the Portuguese Water Dog, this strategy also helps to ensure that the dog does not become underweight from forgetting to eat at regularly scheduled mealtimes.
Dietary Requirements for Portuguese Water Dog Foods
A breed that is highly physically active, the Portuguese Water Dog needs a diet that is based on a lean meat to truly achieve optimal health and wellness. The best dog foods for Portuguese Water Dogs make a whole meat or meat meal the foundation of their formula. Though by-products are included in many commercially prepared diets, these ingredients can be difficult for dogs to process well, and thus, diets containing them are best avoided.
Likewise, the plant-based proteins soy, corn, and wheat are common allergens for many dogs and are not of sufficient nutritional quality to benefit energetic breeds like the Portuguese Water Dog. Other ingredients unsuited to the nutritional needs of the Portuguese Water Dog are chemicals, additives, fillers, artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives.
The whole grains, fruits, and vegetables included in any well-balanced diet for the Portuguese Water Dog contribute to the development of a strong immune system and healthy digestion. Though any combination of these ingredients makes an excellent foundation for a carbohydrate profile in a high performance food, dogs that have expressed allergies to grains in the past may do best on a grain-free formulation.
Healthy fats help the Portuguese Water Dog to enjoy the fuel needed to maintain a busy lifestyle and the support required for coat and skin health. The ideal source for these fats is found in animal-based ingredients such as chicken fat and oily fish. The plant-based oils safflower, canola, and coconut also offer adequate servings of the essential fatty acids the Portuguese Water Dog needs.
Supplements help a diet to work its most effectively. The ideal supplements to look for in a food for the Portuguese Water Dog are prebiotics, probiotics, glucosamine, taurine, and chondroitin.
Things to Look for in the Best Dog Food for Portuguese Water Dogs
Here is a basic list of the most important things to look for in the best dog food for a Portuguese Water Dog:
Lean, meat-based proteins heading up the ingredients list
The carnivorous Portuguese Water Dog requires a diet based on a lean meat to enjoy ideal health. Lean whole meats or meat meals are the easiest to digest and are the most nutritionally viable options for dogs. By-products and the plant-based proteins soy, corn, and wheat 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 the Portuguese Water Dog. Diets which include any of these items in their formulation are undesirable for this breed and can lead to skin issues or future allergic reactions.
Enriched with probiotics and helpful supplements
The most beneficial supplements for the Portuguese Water Dog include prebiotics, probiotics, taurine, glucosamine, and chondroitin.
Meets AAFCO nutritional requirements for a complete and balanced food
All foods appropriate for the Portuguese Water Dog should bear the AAFCO seal of approval, indicating it meets the standards for a complete and balanced food.