Right now I feed my dog morning and night. I've heard that it takes up to 12 hours for the food to be absorbed the food. So I've been told to feed him after working him at night the daily amount instead of twice. What does everyone here do?
I find at night works best, my pup is a bit overly attached to me so I tried having the kids take turns feeding her but she seems to only really want to eat at 10pm or later any time earlier and she does not eat much. Also found "good luck getting her to work in the few hours after a meal"
During summer months I feed my dog in the evening. He won't eat until it cools down outside anyway. In the winter months I have food available for him at all times. I don't worry about him over eating, he works hard from October-January and needs all the supplement he can get. He tends to get a bit heavy in weight during the summer, but by November he is a muscle machine. BTW, my dog is outside year round.
I read a study that dogs run the best 15 to 20 hours after they have eaten. This is for big running upland/field trial dogs (pointers/shorthairs) so it probably wont matter concerning a duck blind retriever dog. I feed once a day-->each evening, earlier the better if I am running them the next day but I haven't seen too big of a difference between feeding at 5PM or 7PM.
There was a big study and article done in Gundog magazine recently about this and it is what I have been doing for quite a few years. If you are going hunting the next day, feed the night before. It takes up to 17 hours to fully digest the food and hunting a dog that just ate is like putting a set of keys in a sock for a dogs stomach, just asking for trouble and twisting around. If a dog has hunted hard all day feed them within an hour or 2 for recovery and they should be ready to go the next day.
Feeding a dog too soon after a hunt can be as bad as feeding them right before a hunt. I know...I lost a Pudelpointer due to GVD (twisted gut) AFTER a big day of Chukar hunting. You never want to see a dog go through that....
My dogs, Police Service Dog and personal dogs, get fed at night. Research shows that dogs perform best with 12+ hours to digest and process the food. Also, you should not feed a working dog within 2 hours of doing any intense work. This can cause bloat, or twisted gut as many call it now a days. Basically what happens is if the stomach is too full of food/alot of water, it will twist itself around the opening and exit, throat and intestines. Closing those causes major issues and is often fatal.
Does "when to feed" depend on the breed? Or just how hard your dog will be working the next day? I have never really put that much thought into it. I never feed my dog when we are sitting in the boat duck hunting. He will occasionally get hold of someones sandwich or pizza when we are not looking, other than that he gets fed when we get home. It's always at least an hours drive home and he is in his crate sleeping most of that time. I have always immediately fed him upon arrival to the house. He works hard retrieving ducks, but nothing like hunting Chukars with a pointing dog.
I can definitely see where you guys have set feeding times with your Pointing dogs that run hard all day.
Hard days hunt- mine get their replenishment treat and then they sleep quite a few hours before I feed, Seems to me the big deep chested dogs are more susceptible to the gut twist- I worry about both my PP's and watch very closely on how and when I feed and their body language during the hunt. Almost lost one on a hike , as a pup, due to heat - something I should have seen earlier but interpreted as something else. Luckily no permanent damage done. My WW vest carries a lot of dog medical crap---- just in case and hope it is never needed stuff.
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