How Many Calories Does My Dog Need A Day

After the second most important requirement (water), dogs need energy to grow, work, play, reproduce, recover from illness, maintain healthy lifestyle, and enjoy old ago. Dogs use energy all the time but their “exact” requirement depends on their age, level of activity, metabolic rate, physiological status, and size. Unlike humans, dogs eat mainly to satisfy their energy requirement. Consume anything more than it requires, is purely lacking in discipline, human discipline! Many owners tend to over babying their dog base on their own eating habits.

Here are some basic facts:

Energy :

Energy comes in several forms such as heat, light, mechanical, electrical, and chemical energy. The food our dogs consume contains chemical energy and it is stored in their body until they release it through their daily activities including sleep.

: Energy comes in several forms such as heat, light, mechanical, electrical, and chemical energy. The food our dogs consume contains chemical energy and it is stored in their body until they release it through their daily activities including sleep. Calorie : One Calorie (1 Kcal or 1000 calories) is the amount of heat (energy in food) required to raise the temperature of 1 kg of water through 1°C.

: One Calorie (1 Kcal or 1000 calories) is the amount of heat (energy in food) required to raise the temperature of 1 kg of water through 1°C. RMR : Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) is the amount of energy (calories) a dog needs to burn in order to keep vital organs functioning endlessly with no activity *RMR is similar to BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) and often used interchangeably but technically different.

: Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) is the amount of energy (calories) a dog needs to burn in order to keep vital organs functioning endlessly with no activity *RMR is similar to BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) and often used interchangeably but technically different. MER: Maintenance Energy Requirement (MER) is the amount of energy (calories) a dog needs to burn under these conditions: exercise, growth, work, gestation, lactation, cold and warm temperatures. To know the amount of MER your dog needs is to multiply RMR by various ME depending on different conditions.

How To Calculate Resting Metabolic Rate

To calculate resting metabolic rate for individual healthy adult dog is not that clear cut, mainly due to two factors.

All dogs have different metabolic rates even within the same breed. The relationship between size and maintenance energy requirements (MER). This is based on the correlation between the dog’s weight and surface area. The greater surface area the dog has, the higher is his RER. For example, if you’d to put a Chihuahua and a Great Dane in the same room, obviously the Chihuahua has a greater surface area as compare to the Great Dane. Hence the Chihuahua will require greater energy replacement due the higher loss in body heat.

The size factor also comes into play here as the Chihuahua is smaller in stature while a Great Dane is bigger but when it comes to energy levels sometimes both need it in equal measure irrespective of the size like for example a High quality Black Golden doodle requires just as much as a dachshund.

FYI, if you’d to use formula 1 as your guide to feed your Chihuahua and Great Dane, the Chihuahua will eventually accumulate an extra of 18,600 calories in a year. If his activities remain unchanged, over time your Chihuahua will become obese. Hence the two RER formulae for different weight group.

Again I stress, to calculate resting metabolic rate (RMR) is basically to know the daily calories needed for your dog to remain alive with “zero” activity–such as sleeping 24 hours throughout the day.RMR is used only in extreme situations so do not use it even your dog does not nothing much all day long.