A proper Chug diet is vital for avoiding health issues. Find appropriate eating schedules, choose the right food, and the truth about specialty food and supplements. We’ve put everything you need to know into this one article so you can refer to it through the stages of your chug dog’s growth.
A proper Chug diet is vital for avoiding common health issues and weight gain. Find appropriate eating schedules, choose the right food, and the truth about specialty food and supplements. We’ve put everything you need to know into this one article so you can refer to it through the stages of your chug dog’s growth.
Chugs are popular small breed family pets with big hearts. The Chihuahua Pug mix is very playful and affectionate and is very good with kids. They’re perfect apartment dogs because they don’t need a lot of space although they have so much energy, you’ll want to take them out to exercise often.
With their boundless energy levels, it’s no surprise that your chug can have an enormous appetite. But beware: they tend to gain too much weight, leading to many health issues and potentially shortening their life span.
Keep your chug healthy and strong by sticking to the right diet and schedule of feedings, and choosing high-quality food. Here’s what you need to know.
Not sure if your little buddy is actually a Chug and not a relative breed? Check out our DNA test resource page and learn how to get a full breakdown of your pet’s genetic profile!
How often should you feed your chug? It depends on his age, weight, and general health but 2 meals per day is common. You can use this chart as a general idea of the best feeding schedules, but be sure to consult your vet he may adjust the time and portions if he thinks your dog is overweight/underweight or has health issues.
Newborn puppies will need milk from its mother. At about 6 or 7 weeks, you can start giving proper puppy formula. Do not give a puppy cow’s milk meant for humans – they will have trouble digesting it and may experience stomach aches and vomiting.
Chug puppies weigh about 2 pounds. He doesn’t need a lot of food, but since this is a critical part of bone and muscle development, make sure you give a high-nutrition formula designed for puppies. Feed him 1/3 cup of food three times a day.
In dog years, your chug is technically a teenager and will be around 6-8 pounds. Increase his food portion to ¾ cup, but reduce feedings to twice a day. With your vet’s go-ahead, you can now shift to adult dog food or introduce some homemade dog treats.
Note: This is the time to start proper training! Just like obedience training, proper eating habits should be taught to your growing pet.
Your chug is now an adult (although we all know chugs will always act like puppies at heart) and should weigh around 12-14 pounds. Give ½ cup of food twice a day, but make sure he gets enough exercise too! Without enough walking, playtime, and other everyday activity, your dog can still gain weight despite controlled portions.
Your chug is now a senior dog. Because of possible digestion problems, lower metabolism, and less activity, he needs fewer calories now. Give 1/3 cup twice a day.
A reminder while you’re here, by now you should absolutely have pet insurance for your dog! Check out our pet insurance page to learn about why it’s a must for your dog.
Dogs need a balanced diet of proteins for growth, vitamins and minerals for digestion health and a robust immune system, carbohydrates for growth, and omega fatty acids for a shiny coat.
High-quality dog food usually offers your pup the right balance of nutrients. Some brands like Blue Buffalo also have specific formulas for small breeds, though they can cost more. Your vet can always recommend what’s best for your pup and should always weigh in before changing your pets’ diet.
Raw Dog Food
Raw food diets are gaining popularity and they can be an excellent choice for your pet. We have an entire page about raw dog food and grain-free dog diets so make sure to check it out!
Dry dog food is easier to store and more durable, so it can be cheaper by allowing you to buy in bulk. It also won’t stain or stick to the fur on your pup’s face, which can eliminate the need for post-meal grooming. You should be very careful about choosing brands: some cheaper, generic kibbles contain a lot of salt and other preservatives. Dry food isn’t necessarily bad, but it’s easier to make cheap dry food than cheap wet food, so you have to be a little more careful.
Wet dog food has more moisture, which can help your dog stay hydrated on boiling days. Chugs are more prone to heatstroke and dehydration, so if he’s the type who “forgets” to drink when he’s excited, either use wet food or mix it into the kibble.
Wet dog food also has a stronger smell and taste. That can be a pro and a con, depending on how you look at it: it stimulates your dog’s appetite, but it can also make the room stink.
Your dog’s nutritional needs depend on his age. Puppies need more nutrients because of the growth spurt, while senior dogs need fewer calories because of the decrease in metabolism and activity.
Some brands also carry weight loss formulas, which will have higher protein but less fat and calories. But how do you know if these fancy (and often pricey) kibble can really help your chubby chug?
The trick is to look at the first three to five ingredients in the label. They may have healthier protein sources like chicken or fish liver and include filling but non-fattening ingredients like barley or oats. There are also grain-free formulas, which are the equivalent of a human going on a no-carb diet.
Remember: If your pet has excess weight or beings to have weight gain, always examine their activity level and make sure they get the exercise required to maintain a healthy weight.
According to PetMD, most commercial dog food already has all the nutrients that your dog needs. Unless your vet prescribes additional vitamins or supplements, it may actually be dangerous to give him those pills and chewables no matter how natural or organic they may be.
You can ask the vet if you can give vitamins for a healthy coat or skin, especially if your chug seems to be prone to itching or scratching. But before giving anything orally, try to switch to less invasive treatments like dog shampoo for sensitive skin.
There has been a recent interest in glucosamine-chondroitin supplements as a natural treatment for osteoarthritis. Studies show that they can reduce inflammation and pain and may eventually increase mobility. This is especially because toy breeds and both a chug dog’s parent breeds are prone to joint issues and hip Dysplasia.
Fish oils are a delicious (to your dog at least!) way to get extra Omega-3 fatty acids which are great for both heart and coat health.
Care should be taken when changing your pet’s diet. Watch for changing health conditions, changing body weight, and allergic reaction from food allergies.
Consult your vet before switching to specialty food. They are the best person to know the best diet based on your dog’s weight and unique nutritional needs!
With the right diet and proper exercise, your chug can stay healthy and live a longer life. Be sure to always monitor your little friend’s eating habits, note any sudden changes, and regularly reevaluate your diet plan. In mixed breed dogs, food and nutrition requirements will depend on the specific parent breeds. Always consult your vet before making dietary changes or if you have any concerns about your pet’s feeding habits.