English Bulldogs are not the healthiest of dog breeds. They are riddled with many health issues due to their exaggerated physical features and shallow gene pool. Their predisposition to ailments largely affects their food options.
Finding the best dog food for English Bulldogs is critical. It not only keeps their bodies well-nourished but also prevents setting off certain illnesses common to the breed.
Specific Nutritional Needs of English Bulldogs
The best dog food for English Bulldogs should hit all the breed’s nutritional requirements to ensure proper growth and development. Here is a quick rundown of the ideal nutrients your dog’s meals need to contain:
Fats usually get a bad reputation because they tend to be associated with canine obesity. However, they are a crucial part of an English Bulldog’s diet.
He needs them to have enough energy to get through the day. Fats are also necessary for good cognitive health as well as retaining healthy skin and shiny coats.
When looking for the best dog food for English Bulldogs, inspect their fat content. Adults English Bulldogs must have 5% fat, while puppies require more, at least 8%.
Ensure that most of the fats your dog consumes are a good balance of healthy fats. Omega- 6 and omega- 3 fatty acids help mitigate joint pain caused by inflammation.
The best food for English Bulldogs with skin allergies is also products with healthy fats. Omega fatty acids promote clear skin, a shiny coat, and less shedding.
Proteins provide English Bulldogs with essential amino acids. They play a big role in various body processes, from muscle and tissue repair to antibody and hormone production.
The English Bulldog breed requires more proteins compared to other canines because of their high muscle mass. Ideally, full-grown EB s need to have 2 grams of protein per 1 pound of body weight.
On the other hand, puppies and pregnant Bulldogs need twice as much. It means they should be getting 4 grams of protein for every pound of body weight.
English Bulldogs have little need for carbohydrates in their diet since they get most of their energy from fats and proteins. Moreover, most of them tend to be less active than other dogs. Thus, it is best to limit their carbohydrate consumption.
Complex carbohydrates must make up most of your dog’s carb consumption. They are slowly broken down in the body, which promotes better digestion and decreases the frequency of hunger pangs.
Avoid simple carbohydrates because they get quickly digested and absorbed into the English Bulldog’s system.
As a result, he is more likely to feel hungry sooner, leading to food begging. It can contribute to obesity, which is a persistent health issue in the breed.
4. Vitamins and Minerals
The best dog food for English Bulldogs should not miss out on other essential nutrients. A wide range of vitamins is necessary to ensure that the breed develops a strong immune system and normal body functions.
The vitamins your dog needs include but are not limited to B vitamins, vitamin A, vitamin E, and vitamin K.
Minerals are also a critical part of the English Bulldog’s diet. Nutrients such as potassium, calcium, and phosphorus promote healthy teeth and bone growth.
Zinc and selenium act as antioxidants that work to prevent cell damage caused by free radicals. Iron is essential for the production of red blood cells and proper blood circulation.
What to Look for in English Bulldog Food
Not all dog food in the market has your best interest at heart. Some of them are made from low-quality ingredients that hasten the development of breed-specific issues in the English Bulldog.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind when searching for the best dog food for English Bulldogs:
1. Pick products containing high-quality protein.
It is a common practice for many dubious dog food manufacturers to list vague protein sources in their ingredients list. So watch out for non-specific meat ingredients.
You will want to steer clear of dog food containing “meals,” “by-products,” and “digest.”
Chances are they often contain low-quality protein sources coming from leftover body parts of slaughtered mammals. Some are even harvested from roadkill or sick animals.
Make sure that the protein source is listed as one of the top 3 ingredients of the dog food. This ensures that the meat makes up a large part of the dog food.
2. Look for high-quality organ meats.
Organ meat or offal refers to the internal organs of animals, excluding muscle meat. Many people are put off by the idea of consuming animal entrails, so there is less demand for them. Hence, they are often considered animal by-products.
Although offal may seem like it has nothing to offer to canines, in truth, certain varieties are an excellent source of nutrients. High-quality organ meats for dogs, such as the liver, kidney, heart, and green tripe, are packed with protein, vitamin A, iron, and zinc.
The best dog food for English Bulldogs must contain these types of organ meats, and they should be listed high on the ingredients list.
3. Be picky with grains.
Dogs don’t necessarily need grains in their diet, as they are primarily carnivorous animals that can thrive on a diet that is high in protein and fat.
While some grains can be a healthy and nutritious addition to an English bulldog’s diet, it’s important to keep in mind that not all grains are created equal. Some grains may be empty fillers that offer no nutritional value to English Bulldogs, such as corn bran, wheat mill run, and hulls.
Many dog owners ask: “Is rice good for English Bulldogs?” Rice can be a carbohydrate source for English Bulldogs.
4. Check the dog food’s fat sources.
Be wary of dog food that uses broad terms for its fat sources; for example, vegetable oil or animal fat. It does not provide you with clear information about the specific oil or fat used as an ingredient.
This becomes a convenient loophole for manufacturers to use fats from ill or dying animals. Because they are of poor quality, they get spoiled and rancid quickly.
The best English Bulldog food should be transparent about its fat sources. Their names must be specified in the ingredients list, such as coconut or salmon oil.
5. Avoid products with additives.
What should I not feed my English Bulldog? The worst dog food for English Bulldogs is one that contains plenty of food dyes, artificial flavorings, and preservatives. Providing it to them can trigger food allergies and intolerances.
Many of these additives are linked to other health issues in dogs and even humans. For instance, dog food colorings like red 40 and yellow 5 & 6 are found to be carcinogenic.
The chemical preservatives butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA), and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) also carry the same risks.
Ideally, the best dog food for English Bulldogs is made from all-natural ingredients. As we have discussed earlier, check the ingredients to be sure that the manufacturer is transparent with the ingredients used.
We also suggest looking for an AAFCO statement on the product. It should state that English Bulldog food is nutritionally complete and balanced.
Choosing the Right Diet for English Bulldogs with Allergies
English Bulldogs are prone to developing some type of food allergies and sensitivities throughout their lifetime. So selecting dog food for them must be done cautiously to prevent adverse reactions.
Prevalent Causes of Food Allergies
In relation to this discussion, let us answer the question: “Is chicken good for English Bulldogs?” Chicken is a healthy source of protein for English Bulldogs.
However, this meat might turn out to be off-limits for some of them due to causing allergies or intolerances.
With that said, while these types of food are common food allergens in the breed, not all English Bulldogs develop a sensitivity to them.
Many of these food types are rich in essential nutrients. Thus, keeping them out of your dog’s diet is unnecessary unless a proper allergy diagnosis is made.
Diet Options for English Bulldogs with Allergies
Some of the most common diet choices given to English Bulldogs with food sensitivities and intolerances are:
- Limited Ingredient
This type of dog food is typically made up of a single protein source, such as duck, kangaroo, and venison, and one carbohydrate source.Reducing the number of ingredients lessens the chances of triggering allergic reactions. It also helps determine potential allergens in your dog’s meals.
Note that some types of limited-ingredient dog food you find in retail stores are susceptible to cross-contamination. Hence, they can potentially cause allergies in English Bulldogs.
For this reason, veterinary limited-ingredient dog food is a safer choice. Stringent health and safety protocols are carried out to make sure that these products are free from food contaminants.
- Hydrolyzed Protein
Hydrolyzed protein dog food is made by breaking down the food’s protein molecules into a minute size. Doing so prevents the English Bulldog’s immune system from detecting them.
Moreover, it also contains additives such as pea fiber, beet pulp, potatoes, and cornstarch. These ingredients can trigger allergies in some English Bulldogs.
Thus, switching to this diet calls for meticulousness in measuring your dog’s food. Feeding him too much can lead to undesirable weight gain and obesity.
Each type of diet for English Bulldogs with allergies comes with certain pros and cons. Talk with the vet to find the most fitting healthy diet for your canine companion’s condition.
FAQs on Diet for English Bulldogs
What Is The Recommended Diet for English Bulldog Puppies?
The English Bulldog breed is predisposed to orthopedic deformities due to their natural body structure. Many young puppies gradually develop hip and elbow dysplasia as they grow older.
This leads us to the question: “What is the best dog food for English Bulldog puppies?” Look for puppy food formulated explicitly for English Bulldogs.
It must contain high-quality ingredients that provide chondroitin, glucosamine, and omega-3 fatty acids. These nutrients work together to strengthen bones and joints.
Be cautious with the calcium and phosphorus content of the puppy food. High concentrations of these minerals can lead to abnormal bone development in English Bulldog puppies. Food with a 1:1 calcium and phosphorus ratio is recommended.
Puppy food is naturally high in calories to fit the nutritional requirements of young dogs’ growing bodies. Keep your English Bulldog from becoming obese when reaching maturity by transitioning to adult dog food once he reaches 12 months old.
How to Transition English Bulldog Puppies to Adult Food?
English Bulldogs have very sensitive stomachs, especially puppies. Switching from the old to the new food should be done slowly to avoid gastric distress.
Follow this simple guideline for gradual food transitioning:
- Day 1 to 2: Mix 75% old food with 25% new food.
- Day 2 to 4: Mix 50% old food with 50% new food.
- Day 4 to 6: Mix 25% old food with 75% new food.
- Day 7: Fully switch your puppy to new food.
Do not rush the transitioning process. It does not have to be successfully done within a week.
Decrease the amount of the new puppy food for 1 to 2 days if your young English Bulldog suffers stomach upset after meals. You can increase it incrementally once his digestive issues subside.
What Is the Recommended Daily Calorie Intake for English Bulldogs?
The number of calories an English Bulldog needs in a day depends on many factors, including his life stage and activity level.
Active adults require 1,200 calories per day, while sedentary adults need less, approximately 1,000 calories daily.
On the other hand, English Bulldog puppies need a large calorie intake to keep their growing bodies healthy. Ideally, they should have the same calories as active full-grown English Bulldogs daily.
The daily calorie needs of the English Bulldog breed are not set in stone. Changes might be necessary as your dog grows older or when he develops a health issue.
How Much Dog Food to Feed English Bulldogs?
English Bulldogs have a hearty appetite, so it is easy for them to overeat. Stick to feeding your dog a consistent amount of food to prevent him from consuming extra calories.
Here is the recommended feeding amount for the English Bulldog according to his age:
- 2 to 3 months old: 2½ to 3 cups of food per day
- 4 to 5 months old: 3⅛ to 3¼ cups of food per day
- 6 to 8 months old: 3 to 3¼ cups of food per day
- 9 to 12 months old: 2¼ to 2 5/8 cups of food per day
Full-grown English Bulldogs need to be fed 2¼ to 2 5/8 cups of adult dog food daily.
Once they reach their senior years, they become more inactive. Old English Bulldogs require less food to maintain a healthy weight. Give them 1½ to 2 cups of dog food specifically formulated for senior canines each day.
Having flat faces makes it hard for English Bulldogs to pick up and chew food. So consider feeding him semi moist dog food or mixing dry dog food with wet dog food.
How Often to Feed English Bulldogs?
Splitting meals into smaller portions helps keep your English Bulldog at a healthy weight.
This method discourages him from gorging on food and teaches him hunger control. Most importantly, it decreases the chances of dog bloat from occurring.
The meal frequency of English Bulldogs will depend on their age. Puppies 3 months and below should eat 4 times a day. When they reach 4 to 6 months, make it 3 times a day. 7-month-old puppies to adults can eat twice a day.
If your English Bulldog tends to eat his meals swiftly, consider changing his food bowl. Replace it with a puzzle feeder, which is designed to have obstacles to slow down fast eaters.
This type of dog dish also sharpens your furry pal’s problem-solving skills and provides mental stimulation. It makes mealtimes a rewarding and fun activity for him.
Being nitpicky is a must when searching for the best food for your English Bulldogs. Knowing extensive details of various pet food brands helps you avoid products that may potentially trigger or worsen breed-specific ailments.