The eating habits of the Belgian Malinois have been a puzzle to many dog owners. The question on everyone’s mind seems to be what should I feed my Belgian Malinois. How much to feed them? How often? And so on. So many questions.
As hard-working dogs, the Belgian Malinois needs to have full and nutritious meals on a regular basis. They are hyperactive and burn a lot of calories. So the food they get should help them give them enough energy to maintain their high octane lifestyle.
As you can imagine, the topic of what to feed your Belgian Malinois is rather complicated. So let’s simplify it for you and give you comprehensive answers to the questions that keep you up at night. We’ll talk about the diet of the Belgian Malinois at different stages of their life and which foods they like. We also cover the types of food you should never give to your Belgian Malinois.
Typical Feeding Requirements for Belgian Malinois (Puppy and Adult)
Food to the Belgian Malinois is more than a meal to fill its belly. We already saw how they like to stay active most of the time. This is not a couch dog who likes to lie around like the lazy cat. From the moment it wakes up early in the morning it remains on the move. Jumping up and down and making a big fuss. But a good fuss though.
What this means is that your Belgian Malinois needs a lot of calory intake to stay healthy and active. Food not only gives it energy but also keeps it healthy and makes its body stronger to fight diseases. Malnutrition is the number one cause of several canine diseases that we covered before when talking about this energetic dog.
That said, the feeding requirements of your Belgian Malinois vary depending on their age. The puppy usually will eat little amounts but will need to have more than 4 meals a day. So you need to keep their bowl full since they are in a growing phase and need to eat a lot of nutritious food. Focus on protein-packed food that builds their muscles and bones. Calcium is also crucial for their bone density at this age.
Once the Belgian Malinois reaches maturity and becomes an adult, you don’t have to feed them more than 3 full meals a day. Treats are ok but focus on lean and nutritious snacks. Cut down on fat and carb to avoid obesity. Even though the dog enjoys a lot of activity, most of the commercial food brands you get at the store are packed with fats and carb which is more than what your dog needs.
Do Belgian Malinois Have Sensitive Stomachs?
Some dog breeds can go through a stack of raw bones and come out smiling. They thrive on any type of food and will never have trouble no matter what you put in their bowls. Others are more finicky and will complain if you give them anything less than the top brand food they’re used to and love. This last group are high maintenance and are not easy to please.
The Belgian Malinois belongs to that last group. If you try to just feed it any scraps, it will suffer badly. Its sensitive stomach doesn’t accept all kinds of trash food that you and I can handle. As such, be careful what type of food you give it. This goes for the snacks full of sodium and fat and starch that we like to stuff our faces with. These are not good for your Belgian Malinois.
Belgian Malinois Gastrointestinal Problems
Besides the sensitive stomach, the Belgian Malinois also struggle with gastrointestinal problems. These are often caused by the type of food the dog devours. Any sub-standard food or junk food the dog comes across will give it problems from gases to indigestion. It’s not a pleasant experience and both you and the dog will suffer.
Other gastrointestinal problems are just part of this breed’s genes. You can’t help it when your dog becomes ill. It might not be something you gave it. If it catches a caterpillar in the back yard and eats it, it will give it problems too. So you really need to be on the lookout for the first signs of trouble and take it to the vet right away.
How Often Should Belgian Malinois Eat?
The frequency of the Belgian Malinois meals depends on two things. The first is their age. A young puppy less than one-year-old should have at least 4 meals a day. It will eat little but more often. So keep visiting that food bowl and filling it up for it. As a puppy, there’s no risk of it getting obese. Focus on protein and calcium to strengthen its bones and build its muscles.
An adult Belgian Malinois doesn’t need to eat that often. 2 to 3 full meals a day are more than enough. Make sure to give it food supplements to make it healthy. Still focus on calcium and a high-protein diet since this is an energetic dog with an athletic body. Cut on carb and fatty snacks and meals. Cardiovascular problems are common with this breed and you want to cut down the risk.
How Much Should Belgian Malinois Eat?
The amount of food that your Belgian Malinois needs to eat is another issue that many people get wrong. Some would dump have the food packet into the bowl and let the dog eat its fill. They do that because they won’t want to the dog to go hungry or because they worry they might forget to feed it.
Either case, this is the wrong way to feed your Belgian Malinois. You should pay attention not just to what your dog eats but how much it eats as well.
Obesity in adult Belgian Malinois is a problem when the dog eats the wrong kind of food and doesn’t get enough exercise. So give it three full meals a day and pay attention to the snacks you feed it. They also count. If the dog gets a large snack, then you should factor that when you give it its next meal.
What Foods Belgian Malinois Can’t Eat?
Just like many dog breeds, your Belgian Malinois should never be allowed to eat certain types of foods. These include chocolate, coffee, or any snacks that contain caffeine. Both of these are very dangerous and you need to take the dog immediately to the vet if they ingest either of them.
Other food items that we can consume but your dog should never try are onions and garlic. While some dogs might enjoy and even thrive on raw meat and bones, you should never feed that to your Belgian Malinois. Uncooked meat is full of germs and bacteria that could give your dog a lot of health issues.
Foods to Avoid (Not Dangerous, But Not Great for Belgian Malinois)
Not all types of food are dangerous for your Belgian Malinois. However just because they’re not dangerous doesn’t mean your dog should eat them. Nuts and salty snacks for example fall under this category. Make sure that you don’t give your dog any food high in salt. Alcohol is another no. Don’t let your dog lick your glass of wine or have a taste just for laughs.
Other Safe Human Foods
Other than that, you can feed your dog almost anything as long as it’s not processed or have high volumes of salt in it. Avoid fatty snacks and potato chips as well. But fruits are good along with any other food that you enjoy. Pasta and pizza are a favorite that both you and your dog can enjoy safely. Just don’t give him too much and watch the dog’s weight.
Special Diet for Pregnant Belgian Malinois
That’s all fine and dandy. But what if you have a pregnant Belgian Malinois? Should you give her the same type of food and the same amounts and frequency of meals as the normal adult dog? The answer is no of course. You need to prepare a special diet for your pregnant Belgian Malinois.
That diet should be mainly dog food and food supplements. Cut down on any kind of junk food that you give to your dog normally. Protein and calcium should feature high in that special diet. The amount of food needs to be increased as well. Your dog needs a lot of nutrition during her pregnancy. Don’t worry about excess weight. After giving birth, your dog will lose all that fat as she becomes more active again.
Why Your Belgian Malinois Won’t Eat？
There are reasons why your dog won’t eat. Mostly it’s stress and anxiety. When the dog is stressed over something it won’t eat. Check to see what’s causing the dog to be anxious. It could be noise, or something getting it agitated. Once the cause of the stress is over, your Belgian Malinois will start to eat again normally.
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