Feeding your Bullmastiff the right amount is more than just filling their bowl or reading a food label.
How much food your Bullmastiff needs depends on several important factors such as their size, age, energy level, and the type of food you’re giving them.
This comprehensive guide will help you understand the specific nutritional needs of this large and muscular breed. We’ll also break down how to determine the right amount of food for your dog.
What Factors Impact How Much to Feed a Bullmastiff
Determining the right amount of food for your Bullmastiff involves considering several factors to ensure the dog maintains a healthy weight and good overall health. Here are the key factors to consider:
- Age: Bullmastiff puppies, adults, and senior dogs have different nutritional needs. Puppies need more calories and nutrients to support growth, while older dogs may require fewer calories to prevent obesity.
- Weight: Bullmastiffs come in a variety of sizes. Despite being large canines in general, some might grow up smaller or larger than average. With a smaller frame, your Bullmastiff may not be able to eat as much as its larger counterparts.
- Activity Level: Active dogs will require more calories than less active ones. If your Bullmastiff is a working dog or gets a lot of exercise, it will need more food.
- Reproductive Status: Pregnant and nursing Bullmastiffs may have different requirements since they must provide certain nutrients to their offspring. In contrast, spayed or neutered dogs may require fewer calories due to a lower metabolic rate.
It’s important to start with the feeding guidelines provided by the dog food manufacturer and then adjust as needed based on these factors.
Regular vet check-ups and monitoring of your Bullmastiff’s health and weight are also important to ensure its diet is appropriate.
How Much to Feed Your Bullmastiff
Feeding a Bullmastiff correctly is vital, considering their fast growth and large size. These dogs reach their full size quite quickly, usually by two years of age, which means their dietary needs change rapidly during their initial years.
As a result, you would need to adjust the quantity of food you give your Bullmastiff on a monthly basis.
Bullmastiff Puppy Feeding Chart (1 to 12 months)
For Bullmastiff puppies, nutrition in the early stages is primarily provided by the mother’s milk, which is rich in essential nutrients and antibodies. This natural diet is crucial for their initial growth and immune system development.
However, given their rapid growth, Bullmastiff puppies need to switch to a solid, balanced diet soon after weaning, typically around three to four weeks.
Choosing the right puppy food is essential. Look for high-quality options that are formulated specifically for large breeds like the Bullmastiff. These foods are designed to support their rapid growth and development needs.
Here’s a chart to help you understand how much to feed a Bullmastiff puppy at various ages:
|Daily Food Quantity (Cups)
|Caloric Intake (Per day)
|1 – 2 months
|1 ¼ – 3 ¼
|605 – 1,413
|3 – 4 months
|3 ¾ – 3 ½
|1,648 – 1,561
|5 – 6 months
|3 ½ – 4 ½
|1,542 – 2,019
|7 – 8 months
|4 – 5 ¼
|1,830 – 2,326
|9 – 10 months
|4 ½ – 5 ¾
|2,079 – 2,537
|11 – 12 months
|5 ¾ – 6 ¼
|2,537 – 2,769
Remember, these are general guidelines, and it’s important to adjust the portions based on your puppy’s individual needs and other factors mentioned previously.
Adult Bullmastiff Feeding Chart (1 to 4 years)
When your Bullmastiff puppy reaches adulthood, it’s time to switch to adult dog food, which is key for maintaining a healthy weight and overall well-being during their adult years.
To figure out the right amount of food for your adult Bullmastiff, check out this feeding chart:
|Daily Food Quantity (Cups)
|Caloric Intake (Per day)
|1 – 4 years
|4 ¾ – 6
|1,930 – 2,384
For active Bullmastiffs, a diet tailored to support an active lifestyle is a good choice. Incorporating foods rich in vitamins B12 and E is beneficial, as they help in energy release and muscle recovery after physical activity.
Senior Bullmastiff Feeding Chart (5 years and above)
Bullmastiffs mature faster than many breeds, entering their senior years around age five. During this life stage, they might need food that is easier to digest and softer to protect their teeth.
The following table can guide you on how much to feed a senior Bullmastiff:
|Daily Food Quantity (Cups)
|Caloric Intake (Per day)
|5 years and above
|3 ¾ – 4 ¾
|1,544 – 1,907
Remember, the goal is to keep your senior Bullmastiff healthy and comfortable in their later years, adapting their diet as needed for their age and health condition.
Regular veterinary check-ups are recommended to ensure their dietary needs are being met and to make any necessary adjustments to their feeding.
How Often Should You Feed Your Bullmastiff?
Determining the optimal feeding frequency for your Bullmastiff depends largely on their age, size, and individual health needs. Here are some general guidelines:
- Puppies (1 to 12 months): Bullmastiff puppies generally need to be fed more frequently than adult dogs. It’s common to feed puppies three to four times a day to support their rapid growth and development. This frequent feeding can also help prevent issues like hypoglycemia, which is especially important in larger breeds like Bullmastiffs.
- Adult Dogs (1 to 4 years): As your Bullmastiff reaches adulthood, you can usually reduce the number of meals. Most adult dogs do well with two meals a day. This not only meets their nutritional requirements but also helps in maintaining good digestive health.
- Senior Dogs (5 years and older): When Bullmastiffs become seniors, they might require adjustments in their feeding schedule. While some older dogs continue to thrive on two meals a day, others might benefit from smaller, more frequent meals, especially if they have digestive issues.
It’s important to consider that these are general recommendations, and individual needs can vary. Always observe your Bullmastiff’s eating habits, weight, and overall health.
If you notice any changes or have concerns, it’s a good idea to consult with your veterinarian. They can provide tailored advice based on your dog’s specific needs and health status.
How to Transition Your Bullmastiff to a New Food
A Bullmastiff will need to adjust its diet from time to time over its lifetime. This can be because of changes in its life stages, possible medical conditions, or simply that its current diet has become dull.
So, how do you switch your dog’s diet?
Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you do this smoothly and safely:
|1 – 2
|3 – 4
|5 – 6
|7 – 10
If you notice any concerning symptoms in your Bullmastiff during this transition, such as digestive upset, it’s advisable to slow down the process.
In some cases, dogs might need a more gradual change over a longer period, especially if they have sensitive stomachs or other health issues.
Tips on Feeding an Overweight Bullmastiff
Feeding an overweight Bullmastiff is not as simple as putting less food in the dog’s bowl. You must keep some things in mind so that your dog can properly reach its ideal size with few to no issues.
To assist you with that, here are some tips on feeding your overweight Bullmastiff:
- Feed healthy meals: Avoid simple carbohydrates as they put a lot of pressure on the digestive system and can cause many health problems other than obesity, such as diabetes and cancer. Instead, choose whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, which are good sources of essential nutrients.
- Add fiber-rich foods: Fiber makes your dog feel full without adding calories. However, it doesn’t imply that you should feed your Bullmastiff cellulose or other fillers common in commercial dog food. Instead, feed it fiber-rich foods that are all-natural, such as brown rice, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin.
- Increase daily exercise: Bullmastiffs need at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day to keep their bodies and minds in good shape. Taking your pup for a short walk around the block is a great way to encourage your dog to be more active and shed some pounds.
- Keep track of treats: While using treats to train or reward your dog is fantastic, you should limit how many treats you offer an overweight Bullmastiff. Instead of cookies or other starchy snacks, you may also consider using nutritious treats like freeze-dried meats or vegetables.
Take note that the tips mentioned will not take effect in just one day. You and your Bullmastiff will both need to remain patient, as it will probably take a month or two before any significant improvements will appear.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do I Know If I’m Feeding My Bullmastiff Enough?
The rib cage of your Bullmastiff is a good indicator of whether you are feeding it enough food or not. A way to check this is by placing your fingers on your dog’s ribs and running them through the area.
As a general rule, if you can’t feel your Bullmastiff’s ribs, you’re probably overfeeding it. However, if you can see its ribs even without touching them, your Bullmastiff is actually starving and needs more food.
Why Is My Bullmastiff Not Eating?
If your Bullmastiff is not eating, it could be due to a variety of reasons. Loss of appetite in dogs can sometimes be linked to emotional factors like unhappiness or stress.
Often, a dog may resume eating normally once they feel better, typically within a day or two.
However, if your Bullmastiff continues to refuse food and exhibits other symptoms such as discomfort, nausea, fatigue, or seems stressed, it’s important to take these signs seriously.
These symptoms could indicate a health issue that needs professional attention.
Can I Feed My Bullmastiff With Human Food?
Feeding your Bullmastiff human food should be approached with caution. Some human foods, like lean meats and certain fruits and vegetables, are safe and can be beneficial.
However, foods like chocolate, grapes, onions, garlic, and anything with xylitol are toxic to dogs. It’s crucial to keep human food to a minimum, ensuring it doesn’t exceed 10% of your dog’s daily caloric intake.
Do Bullmastiffs Eat a Lot?
Bullmastiffs are large dogs with big appetites. They eat a lot, most likely to fill and satisfy their tummies. In addition, these dogs are very energetic, so they need to eat more to replenish their energy.
Keep a close eye on your Bullmastiff’s weight and size to spot obesity early. You may use the body conditioning score chart to evaluate your pup’s situation.
Can Bullmastiff Eat Bones?
Bones are a risky snack for dogs, regardless of how much your Bullmastiff loves them. However, not all bones are harmful; only those that have been cooked should not be given.
Raw bones, on the other hand, are safe to eat for Bullmastiffs. These bones are unlikely to crumble into sharp fragments that could harm the digestive system.
I hope this article has provided some helpful information and guidance on determining the right amount to feed your Bullmastiff. Please leave a comment below if you have any additional questions!