Nutrition of a pregnant dog is very important for the dog as well as for its puppies. That is why the weight of the dog should be controlled before, during and after the pregnancy itself. Malnutrition or improper food intake can lead to miscarriage or stillborn puppies, while too much food can cause obesity and increase the risk of prolonged delivery.
During the very beginning of pregnancy, possible loss of appetite is likely to occur, which is considered normal, while the energy needs of a pregnant dog are the same just like in non-pregnant dogs for the first 42 days. That is- without changes.
It is only during the last third of this period that the fetus begins to grow rapidly which increases the need for food in a pregnant dog. Energetic needs increase up to 10 % each week, starting from the 6th week until the very delivery itself.
Depending on the size of the dog, it is possible for it to gain from 25 to 30 % more weight during this time. A dog in gestation should also be provided with enough quantity of fresh and clean water.
It is especially important that you give your pet enough high quality food containing balanced nutritional ingredients to ensure its good state of health. Otherwise the dog will be overeating itself and becoming more prone to obesity, without getting all the necessary ingredients for the proper development of its fetus. An ideal diet regime should contain 29% of protein and 17% fat, while larger amounts of easily digestible carbohydrates are ideal to avoid the risk of hypoglycemia.
Apart from food, it is recommended you add nutritional supplements, taking care of adequate calcium and phosphorus intake to ensure the production of milk and proper development of puppy’s bones.