We have the puppies on Performatrim
Puppy (Pet Value Premium Brand Food), which is a good quality,
reasonably priced feed. We recommend that you stay with this
brand till 4 months of age. After 4 months of age, switch
over to good quality adult type dog feed, we use Pet Value
Health Diet which contains chicken first as their listed
ingredients.. There are so many good quality pet foods on the
market, choose one which is as natural as possible, fresh and fits
your budget and availability. If you prefer another brand of
food, a gradual change over is best, i.e. blend the two feeds
together at first and slowly switch on to the new food over a few
We do not
recommend that you feed your puppy – “puppy chow” after 4 months
We do recommend
that you supplement your puppy with Vitamin C 500mg daily & Kelp.
When preparing your dog’s meal, it
is a good habit to measure out the amount of dry food using a
measuring cup. This way you know the exact amount you dog is
getting and you are always consistent.
Your puppy should receive three set
meals per day and fresh water should always be available. We
don’t believe in making food available at all time since this
could lead to fussy eaters. However, while growing actively, the
puppy should be allowed to eat as much as it wants to at each
meal. Also, keep the general appearance of you puppy in mind. If
it looks skinny or fat, its diet should be adjusted. It is
healthiest to have the puppy little leaner than over weight as it
is not as stressful to the growing joints of the puppy.
The puppies are used to receiving
softened feed, which we prepare by pouring warm water over it and
letting it soak. The soaking should be reduced gradually and
quite soon your puppy can eat the dry feed very easily. Once your
puppy is about 4 to 6 months old, it can be put on two daily
meals. Do not be surprised if the puppy stops eating their lunch
meal and goes to two meals daily itself. Our adult dogs still
receive two meals per day. One meal a day is not advisable to
give to your dog, it is better to feed small amounts over a day
rather than one big meal.
The puppies are already used to
“supplements” mixed into the dry feed, such as yogurt, cooked
liver chunks, milk, broth, etc. Although this isn’t necessary,
they enjoy it greatly and we feel that variety is good for them.
Try giving your puppy or dog oatmeal (porridge with crushed flax
seed, three times a week. Flax seed is a super supplement for
skin and maintaining health. We give our dogs Kelp and Garlic in
their meals daily.
Our adult dogs receive a mixture of
Pet Value’s Health Diet Adult food (an average grade dry kibble)
dry feed and home cooked dog stew. The later is a stew of marrow
bones, ground meat or other available meats plus vegetables
available in season, such as carrots, squash and potatoes. We try
to give our dogs some natural, unprocessed foods as much as
possible which can include rice, oats, cornmeal, noodles and
bread. (Note: The marrow bones are added for flavor – thick strong
marrow bones can be given to Bullmastiffs but make sure that there
is no hair line fractures or weakness in the bone. Small bone
fragments can cause serious harm, such as a punctured intestine so
when giving a Bullmastiff a bone watch them as they chew the bone
for awhile and take the bone away when it gets too small.)
Flaxseed is an excellent source of Omega-3 essential fatty acids,
which help to keep the skin and coat in tip top shape, and
maintain lower cholesterol levels. Garlic acts as an
antibacterial agent and improves the cardiovascular system and may
also enhance the immune system functions. It stimulates appetite
too. Oatmeal supplies carbohydrates and amino acids, and is a
good source of fiber. It is also high in iron.
We try to feed our dogs a natural
diet as much as possible along with processed dog food. We feel
variety is good for our dogs and they enjoy their meals and have
healthy shiny coats.
We feel another important factor to extend your
dogs’ life is to not have an obese dog. Keep your dog fit and
exercise regularly. Bullmastiffs are not couch potatoes unless
you make them that way. WALK YOUR
BULLMASTIFF, KEEP THEM FIT AND DO NOT ALLOW THEM TO GET FAT!!
A word of caution: Never walk your
puppy or adult dog right after feeding and avoid other strenuous
exercise, such as rough play with other dogs. Bloat can be deadly
and if an emergency operation is required, you are looking at a
substantial vet fee. Play it safe and allow your dog to rest for
about half an hour.
When you receive your puppy it is
most likely still very young and it will be growing at great leaps
and bounds. Your puppy will love to be played with and this is
great for bonding. However, do not overdo it. Once a puppy lies
down and wants to rest, let him rest.
When your puppy is a bit older,
your can try to take him for short walks. If your puppy seems
fearful and does not want to leave its “home base”, don’t force
it. It is most likely in a fearful stage of its development and
it is easily scared of new things. In a couple of weeks down the
road the puppy will most likely be out of this stage.
Don’t be fooled by your puppy’s
large size. It might be already as large as your neighbor's dog,
but your young Bullmastiff is still in its “rapid growth” phase.
So if your puppy appears lazy or sluggish during a walk, he is
probably exhausted and definitely should not be pushed any
further. Otherwise, temporary lameness could easily result. Just
be patient a little longer, pretty soon you will be the one who is
tiring out on the walks!
The more time you spend on this
important task, the quicker your puppy will be housebroken.
Ideally, if you could use 100% supervision when your puppy
arrives, it should be housebroken in about a week. This of
course, is not always possible, so it will probably take a bit
Put your puppy on set meals and
make it a habit of taking him outside a few minutes later, as well
as first thing in the morning and after longer rests. Soon your
puppy will have to urinate and or defecate. Be sure to praise
puppy for a job well done. Accidents are bound to happen and your
puppy will learn from his mistakes. If the puppy has a mishap,
don’t go overboard with punishment and remember that he did not do
it out of spite. Also, you will need to catch puppy in the mishap
to associate your anger with the misdeed. For instance, if he had
an accident a while back and you started yelling at him not much
will be accomplished. Also, remember to clean the soiled area
well, so that he will not “bless” the same spot later.
Crate Training Your Puppy
We advise the use of a crate for
house training your young puppy, it makes life much easier. The
puppy will train faster and it will save your home from the damage
during those teething time. The crate should be large enough for
your dog to stand up or lie down comfortable. However, if the
crate is too large, the puppy might designate a corner as their
bathroom area. The puppy will enjoy going into their crate, it is
not a punishment but rather a safe, quiet place or bed for the
puppy. They cannot get into trouble in the crate. The crate in
later life can be used when company is expected, such as when
guests come to the home and do not want the puppy jumping all over
them. When traveling with your dog, motels require that the pet
be in a crate while in the room. The crate protects the dog when
you cannot supervise them due to some disturbance in the home such
as a large party, lots of children or moving, etc. Your puppy
will be accustomed to the crate, but reward the dog with a biscuit
upon entry to make it fun for the dog. Example, command – “Go to
your bed” then reward the dog once they have entered the crate.
They will love this command.
Put the crate in an area where the
dog is content, happy and does not feel left out. The crate will
be the dog’s bedroom. Do not let your dog or puppy have long,
extended times in the crate going beyond 4 hours; it is not fair
to the animal. Try to have a routine, so the dog can have an idea
when they can be expected to come out of the crate and stick to
it. When the dog is out of the crate, let them have fun and lots
of play time. Take your dog out for a good walk, provided they
are old enough for going on a long walk. Crate training is one of
the best things you can do for your dog! Providing your dog with
a crate or “den” is the key to having a happy, healthy pet!
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