|Barked: Thu Jun 17, '10 9:11pm PST |
|Your first question regarding diet, this is crucial for a Saint puppy. A lot of dry foods like purina and pedigree have animal by-products. By products can mean any part of any animal, including parts and organs of other dogs, cats, and rodents. Also, grain free is a good way to go, Saints don't really have smallish piles of poop, and corn and other veggies can cause massive piles....Might want to stock up on some bounty paper towels, steam cleaner and disinfectants.
You mentioned you feel feeding a 30 pound bag of dog food for 70 bucks is outrageous, with high quality dog foods such as this, you feed less. Much less than what you would feed if you were feeding pedigree or purina. High quality dog foods are also more nutritionally balanced in nutrients and minerals which saint puppies NEED. You can feed puppy food, however you need to be cautious when doing so. Large breed dogs can develop ailments from growing to fast, and this occurs when the puppy is being fed a calcium level that is too high. Not feeding enough calcium will likely cause the dog to have problems as well.
I feed my 13 week old saint puppy a prey model raw diet, absolutely no grains, veggies or fruits. I spend less than $70 dollars a month feeding my saint puppy a raw diet, which consists of 3 pounds of raw meat a day.
2- Saints and outdoors- Saint bernards should NOT be outside in the sweltering heat. I am from Iowa where temps can reach over 100 degrees with humidity placing the heat index of 120, at this temp any dog or animal can and usually do over heat. Saint's were winter dogs, made to rescue people from the wintry mountains where human rescuers could not go. I have to give my saint a full body clip every summer, and he is an inside dog. He even pants and gets extremely hot with the air conditioner on. Try getting all bundled up in winter gear while its 90+ degrees out with humidity and sit outside all day. Your likely to get heat stroke which is deadly to dogs like it is for humans.
Saint Bernards are not a breed for the typical dog lover. It takes a lot of work to have a saint. Big dogs usually also mean bigger vet bills, they have a ton of genetic diseases that can strike up at any time, including cancer, bloat, hip/elbow dysplasia and a ton more. Training a Saint can be tricky, it's like training a mule, they are and can be extremely stubborn, although they aim to please their owners....it takes a while to get them to do things. Large breed dogs also mentally mature slower than your average sized dog, so bad behavior can sometimes take a while to show, and by that time your dog could very well be over 120 pounds, which would make correcting a problem much harder.
I would suggest doing a pup load of research on the breed, because they take a lot of effort to keep happy and healthy.
I will never own another breed of dog as long as i'm alive. I will always have a Saint by my side...they are wonderful family dogs, especially with my 3 young children, and highly protective, very leary towards strangers which makes socialization crucial at a young age.
If you have anymore questions...please feel free to e-mail me. I have made Saints my life....because they saved mine.
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