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The Bloodhound is a large breed of dog that is easily recognized for its dark brown coloration and long, droopy ears. This breed was originally developed to hunt deer and wild boar, but it has also been used to track humans. Bloodhounds are a type of scent hound which means that they have an extremely strong sense of smell – they can track scents that are several days old and can even follow them across bodies of water.
In addition to being a talented scent hound, the Bloodhound is also an affectionate and gentle breed which makes him a good family pet. In order to keep your Bloodhound in optimal shape, you should be careful about what you feed him. Below you will find valuable information about meeting your Bloodhound’s nutritional needs as well as some special considerations to make. You will also find recommendations for commercial dog foods for this breed.
Nutritional Needs for Bloodhounds
The Bloodhound is a large-breed dog that typically stands about 23 to 27 inches tall at maturity and weighs between 80 and 110 pounds. Bloodhounds may look lazy with their wrinkled skin and droopy ears, but they are actually a very active breed. This being the case, they need a diet that will meet their requirements for both energy and nutrition. Although the Bloodhound is most famous for its scenting ability, these dogs are very gentle and they do very well as family pets because they are sensitive and patient around children. When properly cared for, the bloodhound can live about 11 to 15 years. You can help to maximize the lifespan of your Bloodhound by choosing a high-quality commercial dog food diet.
Like all dogs, the Bloodhound requires a healthy diet that provides a balance of protein, fats, and carbohydrates. Protein is the most important nutritional consideration for dogs because it helps to promote muscle and tissue growth, especially when the dog is still young. Protein should come from high-quality animal-based sources like fresh meat and fish, not from byproducts or byproduct meals. Meat meals from named sources (like chicken meal or salmon meal), on the other hand, are a valuable addition to a commercial dog food diet because they have already been cooked down to a low moisture level around 10% – this makes them a more highly concentrated source of protein than fresh meat which has a moisture level around 70% to 80%.
In addition to protein, Bloodhounds require animal-based fats in their diet as well. Fats are the most highly concentrated form of energy available to dogs and they also help to support immune system function as well as skin and coat health. Fats should come from animal-based sources as well, like chicken fat and salmon oil, because plant-based fats are less biologically valuable to dogs. In terms of carbohydrates, dogs do not have any specific requirements but complex carbs provide dietary fiber as well as various vitamins and minerals. Your dog would also benefit from glucosamine and chondroitin supplements to support his bones and joints as well as prebiotics and/or probiotics to support healthy and regular digestion.
Special Considerations for Bloodhounds
In addition to making sure that your dog’s diet provides a balance of protein, fats, and carbohydrates you should also look for a formula that provides vitamins and minerals. Vitamins are best sourced from fresh fruits and vegetables because they will be easier for your dog’s body to absorb. Chelated minerals are also very valuable – they are minerals that have been chemically bonded to protein molecules to increase absorption. Carbohydrates also provide valuable vitamins and minerals but you need to make sure they come from digestible sources like whole grains. Some Bloodhounds have a tendency to develop food allergies, however, in which case you might want to consider gluten- or grain-free options like tapioca or sweet potato. If your Bloodhound does suffer from food allergies, consider a limited ingredient diet made with a novel source of protein.
Another consideration you need to think about for Bloodhounds is the risk for gastric dilation volvulus, or bloat. This condition is most likely to affect large-breed dogs – especially deep-chested breeds – and it can be extremely dangerous, even fatal. This condition occurs when the dog’s stomach fills with air and it could lead to decreased blood flow to vital organs as well as breathing problems. If the condition is allowed to progress the stomach could actually twist, cutting off blood supply to the stomach and increasing your dog’s risk for death. To prevent your Bloodhound from developing this dangerous condition you should spread his meals out in two or three feedings during the day and keep him from eating too fast or drinking too much water immediately after eating.
Top Recommended Dog Foods for Bloodhounds
If you need some help in finding the right food for your Bloodhound, consider one of the commercial dog food brands discussed below. Be careful when considering a breed-specific formula for your dog – do not just assume that the formula will meet your dog’s needs without evaluating the product for yourself. Consider the ingredients list to make sure that the product is of high-quality before offering it to your dog.
1. Natural Balance LID Large Breed Bites Lamb Meal & Brown Rice Formula
The Natural Balance pet food company was founded in 1989 with the goal of producing the highest quality pet food on the market. This company produces top-quality formulas made with fresh, nutritious ingredients in recipes that are based on sound scientific principles and nutritional truths. Natural Balance offers a wide variety of different product lines including high-protein and grain-free diets as well as limited ingredient diets (LIDs) and vegetarian formulas. If you are looking for a large-breed formula for your Bloodhound, consider the Natural Balance LID Large Breed Bites Lamb Meal & Brown Rice Formula. This formula is made with a limited number of ingredients to help prevent the development (or exacerbation) of food allergies. This recipe is made with lamb meal and brown rice as the top two ingredients – other notable ingredients include fresh lamb, canola oil, and various supplements. Not only does this formula provide high-quality proteins, but it is formulated for large-breed dogs to ensure that your Bloodhound gets the nutrition he needs without getting too many extra calories.
2. Blue Buffalo Freedom Large Breed Adult Chicken Recipe
When it comes to natural pet foods, no name is more recognizable than Blue Buffalo. This company is known for using only the highest quality ingredients and for providing a wide variety of different recipes and flavor options. Blue Buffalo offers four different product lines of dry foods for dogs – the Life Protection line of natural foods, the Freedom line of grain-free foods, the Basics line of Limited Ingredient Diets, and the Wilderness line of high-protein foods. If you are looking for a formula to feed your Bloodhound, consider the Blue Buffalo Freedom Large Breed Adult Chicken Recipe. This formula is specially designed for large-breed dogs and it is made with fresh chicken and chicken meal as the top two ingredients, followed by tapioca starch and peas. The Blue Buffalo Freedom Large Breed Adult Chicken Recipe is made with high-quality proteins, animal-based fats, and grain-free carbohydrates. It is also supplemented with glucosamine and chondroitin for healthy bones and joints as well as a balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids for skin and coat health.
3. Merrick Classic Large Breed Adult Recipe
The Merrick pet food company recognizes that the best pets deserve the best food, and it is this company’s aim to provide the best diet for dogs and cats. This company uses only the freshest, most wholesome ingredients to create their foods – all of their ingredients are locally sourced and combined in ideal blends to provide optimal nutrition. The Merrick Classic Large Breed Adult Recipe is made with deboned chicken, chicken meal, turkey meal, brown rice, and peas as the top five ingredients – this should be enough to convince you that this product is an excellent source of protein and fiber for your Bloodhound. Additionally, this recipe is made with 20% fresh produce to ensure that your dog gets the essential vitamins and minerals he needs. Furthermore, this product contains chelated minerals as well as probiotics.
The Bloodhound is a loyal and affectionate breed that also happens to be extremely talented at scenting. In order to make sure that you get to enjoy your Bloodhound’s company as long as possible, provide him with a high-quality diet like one of the formulas reviewed above.