What Food Should a Terrier Be Given?

Jack Russell terriers are known picky eaters.

Jack Russell terriers are known picky eaters.

Yorkies are prone to tooth decay. Bostons become sick when fed soy. Different terrier breeds have different needs, and that can make it difficult to determine which food is right for your terrier. Many terriers have common issues, like allergies and sensitive stomachs, so they're best fed natural foods that contain no grains.

Brown Rice, Oats and Vegetables

Brown rice, oats and veggies are beneficial to all dog breeds. If you choose to make your dog’s food at home, you’ll want to include a healthy mixture of vegetables, brown rice and oats. Mix vegetables like fresh carrots and potatoes with a handful of brown rice and oats. Boil meat and add it to the veggies to make a delicious stew of sorts. Many terrier breeds are prone to overeating. This is especially true of the bull terrier, so ensure that you don't overfeed. If you’re going to purchase dog food, a well-balanced meal will include one or all of these ingredients, without any filler or additives.

Home Cooking

The food you cook at home is free of additives and fillers, both of which cause irritability and sickness in many terrier breeds, especially the finicky Jack Russell and West Highland terrier. Only use 100 percent meat. Consult your vet about your home-cooked dog food recipes to determine what supplements you should add to keep your dog in optimal health.

Dry or Wet Dog Food

Most veterinarians would recommend that you feed your terrier dry dog food, because it’s known to improve dental health by keeping teeth strong and clean. Yorkies, especially, are prone to early tooth decay. Tooth decay can cause bacteria to enter the bloodstream, which can be quite dangerous. On the other hand, your veterinarian may recommend wet food, because it's a great source of water. Some dogs just don’t get enough fluids, and feeding them wet dog food ensures they’ll get the hydration their bodies crave.

Foods to Avoid

Grains can be difficult to digest, especially for terriers. Each breed has its own nutritional necessities, but grains, like wheat and corn, can be harmful for all terrier breeds. Grains are very difficult to digest, which could lead to after-meal grouchiness or upset tummies. Some terriers have been known to be allergic to grains. Boston terrier owners are encouraged to avoid any dog foods containing soy, white rice and acidic foods, because these can cause stomach issues, allergies or worse. Avoid feeding foods with yeast to terriers, as many have been known to develop yeast-related allergies.

 

About the Author

Caryn Anderson combines extensive behind-the-scenes writing experience with her passion for all things food, fashion, garden and travel. Bitten by the travel bug at the age of 15 after a trip to Europe, Anderson fostered her love of style and fashion while living in New York City and earning her degree at New York University.

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