The American Water Spaniel is one that loves to be on the go and it is likely that he or she will see most of their activity out in the field. Many do not realize just how demanding a sport like hunting can be, especially on the medium sized American Water Spaniel. Whether in the field or in the water, retrieving on just a half day trip of hunting can burn up a good amount of calories. A dog that has poor nutrition will not only tire easily but will most certainly fail to perform effectively out on the field. Owners must always be sure to give their Water Spaniel good calorie support before, during and after hunting trips. This ensures the proper levels of proteins and carbohydrates are replaced, allowing the body and its organs to function properly.
As many hunters have come to find, getting their American Water Spaniel to eat on a hunting trip can be very difficult. The Spaniel gets so focused on doing its job, it will often pay no attention to a food dish whatsoever. However, not eating after strenuous activity can sometimes lead to hypoglycemia in hunting dogs. This occurs when sugar stores are depleted before they have a chance to be replaced. To keep this from occurring, most hunters not only feed their dog a high protein and complex carbohydrate diet several days before the trip, they also offer the dog quick but nutritious snacks during the hunt. When this is done several times throughout the day, the dog is then able to keep its strength and do what it loves best.
Many assume doubling up on food rations before a hunt is good enough for their American Water Spaniel. However, this can also lead to overeating that in turn leads to illness or bloat. The last thing a hunter wants to do is put his or her dog out of commission days before a hunt. Rather than focus on quantity, owners should instead focus on feeding their dog a quality food with plenty of protein and carbohydrates. To help with this, there are not only a number of pre made dog foods available, there are also recipes and pre-made snacks. While some believe it is a good idea to also offer supplements, this is highly debatable and owners should first seek the advice of their vet.
When it comes to determining diet, the Spaniel's age and activity level should always be considered. As the American Water Spaniel is a breed known for its ravenous appetite, even the non hunting Spaniel will seem like it needs more than the average dog. The tendency to gulp down food is simply a trait of the breed and feeding them more then they require will eventually lead to unnecessary weight gain. When weight gain is a problem, many owners temper this voracity by supplementing with small amounts of canned pumpkin. Not only does the fiber make the Spaniel's stomach feel fuller, it is low in calories. Once the weight goes down, owners can resume feeding their Spaniel with a regular diet.