High Calorie Dog Food

A high calorie dog food is an essential addition to the diet of certain dogs. High calorie dog foods are often suggested for dogs with a certain lifestyle, or affected by certain conditions. While most dogs should be fed a balanced diet of high quality dog foods and sufficient protein, a high calorie dog food isn't necessarily advantageous for all dogs. 

Active and Working Dogs

If your dog is very active, outdoors or inside, a high calorie dog food is recommended. Active dogs burn high amounts of calories daily from working, running, playing or exercising. An addition of a high quality, high calorie dog food is essential to keep active dog's protein levels up, and to help keep joints healthy. High quality dog foods will contain healthy protein products, rather than meat byproducts.

Pregnant and Nursing Dogs

It is recommended, when female dogs are pregnant or nursing, to provide a high calorie dog food full of protein, vitamins and minerals. Mother dogs carrying or caring for puppies convert much of their own diet to essential needs for their young. Many of the important vitamins and minerals for the mother dog are depleted during the process of pregnancy and nursing. In order to help replenish proteins and vitamins, a proper selection of a high calorie dog food will be of great benefit.

Dogs with Certain Illness or Disease

Occasionally, upon diagnosis of certain illnesses and disease, a high calorie dog food will be suggested. If you dog is afflicted with a disease or condition that causes severe weight loss, or mismanagement of proteins, a high quality, high calorie diet could help. Older dogs will often benefit from a high calorie dog food as well, as long as they are not already obese or overweight.

Know the Ingredients

High calorie dog food comes in all shapes and sizes, and sometimes isn't all it promises to be. When you own a dog requiring a high calorie diet, that doesn't mean junk food, treats and high fat content. High calorie dog foods should provide essential minerals and proteins from high quality sources, and not simply contain loads of carbohydrates and fat. Protein derived from grains is considered incomplete, as it does not provide all the the essential amino acids required by a dog's body. Ingredients should always include protein from a real meat source. Avoid meat byproducts or "meat and bone meals."

High Calorie Dog Food and Obesity

Dogs who are overweight or obese should avoid high fat, high carbohydrate and high calorie dog foods. Obesity contributes to many diseases and conditions that can shorten the lifespan of your dog. Always check labels and know the ingredients when selecting the proper diet for your dog. If your dog has a problem with weight, check to be sure you are not using a high calorie dog food, limit the offering of unhealthy treats and increase exercise. A well-balanced lifestyle, with proper protein intake, will significantly increase the well-being of your pet.