Unlike larger-breed dogs that are considered mature at age 5, medium-breed dogs are usually called mature or senior at age 7. By this time, their nutritional requirements are changing. You can help keep your medium-breed dog active, happy and healthy with a specially formulated mature or senior diet that delivers highly digestible, enhanced nutrition.
The Signs of Aging in Medium-breed Dogs
Your dog might be aging in a number of ways. He may have a dull, dry coat and flaky skin, declining activity or weight gain, decreased immune system response, more frequent intestinal problems, joint stiffness and a loss of lean muscle mass. It’s true that a mature or senior dog generally needs fewer calories, but to address special mature or senior concerns, your dog still needs high-quality protein and carefully balanced nutrients.
What to Look for in a Mature or Senior Diet
What your medium-breed dog needs is a high-quality, balanced maintenance food formulated for his changing metabolism. Look for options with these age-essential dietary components:
Vitamin-rich fish oils for healthy skin, a shiny coat and overall health
Antioxidants such as vitamin E and beta-carotene to help boost the immune system
High-quality animal-based protein sources to help maintain muscle mass
A special fiber source, such as beet pulp, to help maintain intestinal health and enhance your dog’s ability to absorb age-essential nutrients
A special carbohydrate blend of healthy grains for sustained energy
These ingredients are the keys to mature or senior nutrition whether you feed dry or wet dog food or give your dog treats.
Special Needs in Medium-breed Mature or Senior Dogs
Older, less active dogs are prone to weight gain. Controlling your dog’s weight can help minimize health complications such as diabetes or joint stress. Your dog can benefit from a weight-control diet with these key characteristics:
A reduced fat level that still offers essential nutrients for skin and coat health
L-carnitine, a key nutrient that helps burn fat and maintain muscle mass during weight loss
Special carbohydrate blends that help maintain energy while managing weight
Vitamin-rich fish oils for overall health
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How much do you know about the food you’re buying for your puppy? When shopping for puppy food, pay attention to these three sections of a dog food label.
1. The Ingredient Panel
This section lists all the ingredients that make up the product. The ingredients are listed in descending order according to weight before cooking. In dry food, look for a source of high-quality animal-based protein: chicken or lamb, for example. Dogs thrive on animal proteins.
Manufacturers who use large amounts of vegetable proteins might be saving money by providing basic — but not optimal — nutrition. You should also avoid artificial colors and flavors, which offer no nutritional benefits.
2. The Guaranteed Analysis
Near the ingredient panel should be a chart of percentages called the "guaranteed analysis." These figures reveal the basic nutrient makeup of the dog food's formula and protein content. The minimum percentages of protein and fat and the maximum percentages of fiber and moisture (water) should be listed.
3. The Manufacturer’s Name and Address
This information must be included on the label by law. A toll-free number or web address for the manufacturer may also be listed. Manufacturers who list a phone number, such as IAMS™, generally have a high-quality product and welcome consumer calls and questions. If you would like information about IAMS products, visit our website or call us toll-free at 800-525-4267.
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