It is important to remember however that these figures are guidelines only, and there are several factors to be taken into account when assessing your pet’s nutritional requirements :
- Activity level.
- Temperament (stressed animals burn off more calories than relaxed ones).
- Metabolism (every animal is an individual with his or her own speed of metabolism; this means that 2 dogs of the same age, breed and weight could have different daily calorie requirements).
In order to provide the correct portions when feeding your dog or cat, it is also helpful to assess your pet’s appetite, visual appearance and stools. Whilst poo watching does not sound particularly pleasant, it is one of the best indicators of health. Increased frequency of passing faeces, production of large quantities of stools of loose motions are often frequent signs that an animal is receiving more food than he or she requires.
It is important to obtain an accurate weight for your dog, and also to weigh out the food. Guessing on both accounts gives a large margin of error.