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Nottoway River Alaskan Malamutes

Feeding Your Malamute
Malamutes require a comparably small amount of food
for their size. They have a very high metabolism so a
small amount of nutritious food will adequately supply
their nutritional needs. I was amazed at how little my dog
eats compared to my mother's Golden Retrievers.  My
malamutes tend to nibble throughout the day.  This is
because they tend to eat based on their activity.  When
they run and play they eat more.  If they work they will
eat more.  If they are having a lazy day they will eat less.  
Mals tend to eat less in the summer and more in the winter. 
 
We recommend that you purchase a Quality Grain Free Dog Food made specifically for Large Breeds.  A good web site to get some ideas is http://www.dogfoodadvisor.com  Choose from their 5 or 4 star lists. 
 
Better quality foods (Nutrient dense foods) supply nutrition efficiently so less food is fed at each feeding as compared to feeding of cheaper foods.  If your food contains corn or some other grain as a filler the dog will need to eat more of it. So it really may be cheaper to feed the more expensive food in the long run.
 
Since Malamutes are pretty active by nature they require a higher than average protein in their diet. Kibble dog food should include the following:
 
30% to 40% Protein (depending on the activity level of the dog).
18% to 20% Fat content
30% Complex Carborhydrates
 
Look for dog foods that list whole meat and meal as the first ingredient. The best proteins for Malamutes come from lots of fish and fowl based foods. Red meats like beef, lamb, or bison should constitute a smaller percentage of their protein intake. The sources of fat should also come from whole meat sources.  The dog food should have a good source of complex carbohydrates from legumes, seeds, fruits and vegatables.  It is best to be grain free (no corn or wheat).  It should also include herbs for digestion and immune system support.  Some also contain pre and probiotics.  It should include a list of natural sources for their vitamins, minerals, and supplements, not synthetic.
 
Since Malamutes eating patterns change with the temperature we recommend that you consider changing the protein base with the changing seasons. In the Summer months Malamutes have lowered energy levels and calorie requirements. So they really don’t require as much protein and fat in their diet.  In the colder months they need more weight and a fuller heavier coat for warmth. The following is our feeding schedule: 
  •   Autumn and Winter - we primarily feed a fish based kibble high in essential fatty acids to support healthy skin and coat.
  •   Spring - we start adding lighter proteins like more chicken to their diet.  
  •   Summer - we switch to a mixed protein base lower in fish and higher in chicken and some added beef protein. 
Feeding Your Puppy
The same information above applies to puppies too. However, you  not only need to make sure you feed the puppy a Breed Appropriate food, but also an age appropriate food since thier nuturitional needs are much different from that of an adult.  Puppies should be on a puppy food formula for the first year of their life. You want to use puppy food for large breeds that pay careful attention to keeping growth in check as not to overwhelm the immature skeletal and musculature system of a larger dog.  
 
It is imperative that you do not overfeed the puppy.  Larger breed dogs like Malamues grow faster and stay puppies longer (12-24 months).  Malamutes have rapid growth rates and this means that their bones must change quickly.  Overfeeding can lead to excessive weight gain and this can be a factor that can put them at risk of forming their bones improperly. 
 
The top 3 reasons dogs get hip dysplasia is 
 
Genetics
Overfeeding
Excessive dietary calcium
 
 
Some sources indicate that free choice feeding has been shown to cause a puppy to grow too fast — and lead to serious problems.  Therefore we recommend that you control your puppy's food intake for the first two years of it's life.   The puppy food bag tends to have recommendations on amounts and times per day.
 
Here is a great article about choosing dog food that lowers risk of hip displasia: 
 
http://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/best-dog-foods/best-large-breed-puppy-food/