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What is an all life stage diet?
An all life stage food is exactly what it says. It is a food which is nutritionally sufficient for all stages of your dog’s life. From puppyhood to adult and senior. Puppyhood has the highest nutritional requirements of your pet’s life. Therefore, an all life stage food can be the same as feeding a puppy food for your dog’s whole life.
Often all life stage foods are an 80:20 style. This means 80% meat ingredients and 20% other ingredients, which can include carbohydrates, vegetables, vitamins and minerals. These foods, containing large quantities of meat, are often presented as all life stages foods due to their high energy contents. Especially energy from protein and fat.
Is an all life stage food suitable for my dog?
For highly active dogs this high level of nutrition can be necessary! These dogs require this elevated level of nutrition through adulthood. Energy which they expend can be replaced increased protein intakes help their muscles to recover from intense activity. While for many pets these all life stage diets greatly exceed their nutritional requirements once they reach their adult size. This can contribute hugely to weight gain if not fed carefully.
How much all life stage food should I feed?
As with all foods, how much to feed depends upon your dog’s lifestyle. Very active working dogs will require much more than family dogs with a more laidback lifestyle.
Comparing an all life stage diet to an adult or senior specific diet: a far smaller quantity of the all life stage food would be needed per day to supply all of your pet’s nutrition. The smaller quantities of all life stage food required may not seem enough to feed your dog each day. Especially when your dog can wolf it down in seconds! Which may make these all life stage diets more likely to be overfed.
Are all life stage foods really suitable for my dog’s entire life?
It is likely that one diet will not suit your dog for its entire life. For example, an all life stage diet would be unsuitable for many senior dogs. This is due to the need for them to maintain a healthy body condition and avoid overfeeding and obesity. All life stage foods, however, may be the best choice during periods of high activity or energy expenditure.
All life stage diets can be ideal for dogs requiring a higher level of nutrition for their active lifestyles. However, for family pets they may be too energy rich and cause them to pile on the pounds. As always different foods suit different dogs better than others. When fed in balance with your pooches’ lifestyle all life stage or life stage specific diets can be fed with success!
If you would like some help and advice specific to your dog’s diet, please do not hesitate to get in touch and a pet nutritionist will be more than happy to help you.