How to cater to your pet's nutritional needs in winter
During winter, the appetite of your four-legged friends may change. Pets need extra fat to stay warm and avoid freezing, so they would want to eat more. With the drop in mercury, their mobility reduces too, resulting in a slower metabolism. To understand in-depth how pets' nutritional needs change during winter we touched base with Dr. Shantanu Kalambi, chief vet at Supertails.
Always serve warm food
We warm up our food many times during winter, because who likes their food served cold? It works the same way with dogs. Warm meals provide an immediate sense of internal warmth as they travel through the mouth via the food pipe into the stomach, while also helping improve blood circulation. Therefore, always provide your dogs with warm meals.
Increase the calorie nutrition in their diet
Dogs love to play and stay active, however, during winter their mobility reduces. Research confirms that the dogs exposed to colder temperatures require two to three times more calories than those who stay in moderate temperatures. The increased calorie intake produces greater fat storage and insulation while minimizing and balancing the calorie loss caused by shivering.
Notice their coats and behavior for signs of nutritional deficiencies
You know how your knees and back ache, and how you have spots on your body due to deficiencies? Like humans, pets can exhibit indications of malnutrition as well. Their malnutrition can manifest as dull, brittle coats, and dry and flaking skin. So, watch out for these signs and symptoms and consult a trusted veterinary doctor to make the necessary dietary changes.
Give supplements or a nutrition topper
Here is another important factor that will make you understand how similar dogs are to you. Just the way humans need some extra supplements in between their meals, pets require these supplements to get their complete daily dose of nutrition. To ensure that they are getting the proper amount of nutrition, add supplements or top up their meals with a nutrition topper.
Increase water intake
Just like your mother is always reminding you to drink more water, pets too need someone to keep reminding them to stay hydrated even if they have no urge to drink water. Since most pets don't drink enough water in winter, be sure to include it in their meals so they stay hydrated and always have access to fresh water.