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Frequently asked questions

How long can I feed Puppy food?

At around one year of age you should start moving on to normal food for adult dogs. For large and extra-large breeds it is recommended that feeding with normal food should start at nine months to avoid energy intake from being too high. It is important that young dogs are not allowed to get too round. The bones’ growth joints don’t close until after twelve months of age. Every kilogramme of extra weight causes stress to these unstable bones and joints so that if it comes to the worst, chronic joint problems could occur. In particular very large breeds must move on to food for adult dogs in good time in order to prevent the supply of energy from being too high which would cause obesity. Feeding should be carried out in such a way as to show an average, and not a maximum, growth curve.

When do I move on to normal (adult) food?

At one year of age or at nine months of age in the case of large and extra-large breeds (Great Dane, St. Bernhard, Hovawart etc.).

When do I move on to Senior food?

Dogs become seniors at very different ages depending on their breed. Small dogs won’t become part of the senior age group until about 14 years of age or older, while very large dogs such as Great Danes are already seniors at 5 years of age. It must be decided with each dog individually when it has reached a senior age. If the dog’s level of activity hasn’t changed, even though it has theoretically reached a senior age, it needn’t necessarily be fed a different food.
A rule of thumb for the senior age group
Small breeds: from 12–14 years
Medium breeds: from 8–10 years
Large breeds: from 5 years

Do I have to move on to Senior food?

Not all dogs necessarily need to move on to Senior food. If the dog is still healthy and shows the same level of activity, there is no reason why it shouldn’t continue to eat its normal food. However if there are some age-related problems and activity is becoming restricted, you should move on to Senior food in order to prevent obesity and to provide relief for these ailments through the medicinal herbs contained in Terra Canis Senior.

What is the advantage in Senior food?

As the dog gets older its energy requirements drop due to a lower rate of metabolism and the reduced level of physical activity. Fat-free body mass and muscles are broken down as part of the ageing process which means the protein reserves are smaller. As older dogs are more prone to stress due to their susceptibility and possible illnesses, it is important to compensate for the missing protein reserves by adding high-quality, easily digestible protein. For this reason the dog now requires lots of valuable meat and as little fat as possible in its diet in order to meet its changing metabolism requirements.
The main aim of an older dog’s diet is to support its health, to maintain on optimum weight and to prevent chronic illnesses. Stressful situations, sudden changes to the daily routine and every other kind of stress should be avoided.
Senior dogs should not be given any more grain in their food in order to prevent digestion and utilisation of nutrients from being put under any more strain. A perfect balance of medicinal herbs prevents or alleviates age-related problems with the heart, kidneys, joints and immune system.
How do I switch to Terra Canis food after previously feeding different food?
The intestine’s bacterial population is very different from one animal to the next and depends on age, breed, diet and many other factors. This sensitive flora means that change in diet should only take place very slowly in order to enable the bacteria to get used to the new nutrients and to prevent incorrect digestion and also diarrhoea. A transition over three to four days is ideal. The new and usual food is mixed together whereby the amount of new food is steadily increased. Don’t worry if diarrhoea still occurs. The dog’s intestinal flora will quickly get used to the new food and digestion will become normal again by itself. However cases of diarrhoea which last longer than four days should always be seen by a vet as it could be caused by an infection.

Should I switch slowly with wet food, for example in the same way as with dry food?

As dry food and wet food should never be fed together, a transition from one to the other is somewhat more difficult. One trick is at first to only feed small meals with the new wet food or to thoroughly soak the dry food in enough water before mixing the two.  Another possibility is to feed dry food in the morning and wet food in the evening. There should be at least a six hour gap between the two meals.

My dog quickly gulps down the food. What should I do?

Gulping down food is the natural way of food intake which the dog has inherited from the wolf. The anatomy of the dog’s teeth means that it is not designed to slowly chew food before swallowing. A carnivore’s teeth only serve as tool to intake food and roughly cut up the bits of meat which are then quickly pushed along into the throat. There are no molars with large surface areas which plant-eaters have in order to thoroughly grind down their food. So the dog is allowed to gulp down its food. If two dogs live in the same household they should be given separate feeding places so that jealousy over food does not cause them to choke or cause other problems.

My dog is too fat. What should I do?

It is important that the fat mass is broken down without muscles being broken down. To achieve this the dog requires high-quality protein which at the same time contains less fat. Simply halving the amount of food is not helpful as this only causes muscles to be broken down. Take a critical look at the amount of treats that are fed as they may have to be deducted from the daily amount of normal food. Some breeds are prone to obesity, such as Labradors, retrievers or also bulldogs. Neutered animals also tend to gather small areas of fat around the ribs. In order to prevent obesity, dogs which are prone to storing fat should be watched particularly carefully and given enough exercise.
The amount of food should be adjusted until the dog has reached its ideal weight. The quantity which is stated for the desired weight applies.
Example: Max weighs 15 kilogrammes but his ideal weight is 12 kilogrammes. So he should be fed the daily amount for a dog which weighs 12 kilogrammes.

My dog has kidney problems. What do I need to be aware of?

In the case of kidney problems the amount of protein in meals should be reduced to protect the kidneys as this is where all the breakdown products in protein are metabolised.
In order to reduce the amount of protein you can combine different Terra Canis products:
Wet food Terra Canis ‘Senior range’

‘Terra Canis Senior range’:
particularly easily digestible, grain-free and supplemented with medicinal herbs.
When combined with Garden Mix or Garden Pot at a ratio of 50% wet food Senior to 50% Garden Mix or Garden Pot, the amount of protein is reduced to the ideal level and the dog is provided with a large portion of additional vitamins and minerals.

‘Terra Canis Garten Mix’:
Consists of dried fruit and vegetables, gently dried and rehydrated by mixing with water
Suitable for feeding with wet food when the reduction of protein is required for medical reasons

‘Terra Canis Garden Pot’:
consists of 80% vegetables, 20% fruit, puréed and cooked
Suitable for feeding with wet food when the reduction of protein is required for medical reasons
It is important that the sick animal is regularly seen by a vet to check the kidney values.

My dog defecates too much and too often. Why is this?

Increased defecation can have many causes. There is often an intolerance to one or more parts of the food. Allergies and intolerances are defined as ‘immediate type’ and ‘delayed type’. In the case of the immediate type there is a reaction to show an intolerance to the food immediately after eating. In the case of the delayed type the immune system steadily produces antibodies to combat a certain food, for example a kind of meat. This can occur over days, weeks or years until it actually causes a reaction which is noticed by the owner or vet. One symptom could be the increased defecation.
Even for healthy dogs it is fundamentally important that there is a gap of at least eight hours between feeding wet and dry food. This is due to the digestion times of the two kinds of food. Wet food is broken down and digested in only six hours. Dry food needs 10–12 hours to be digested due to its different composition. If these two digestion processes overlap, sediments and fermentation occur in the dog’s gastrointestinal tract which attack the dogs mucous membrane. This can cause bloatedness and intolerances as well as increased defecation.

What is important about the amount of protein in a food?

A food’s protein content must always be seen in relation to its energy requirement. The correct ratio of these values is taken into account in all Terra Canis menus. All menus contain lots of valuable and very easily digestible protein thanks to their very high muscle meat content. The Light range with its reduced calories and fat is suitable for somewhat fatter dogs. The amount of protein remains the same as we wish to reduce the amount of excess fat mass, not the amount of muscle mass.
In the case of liver or kidney illnesses, the amount of protein must be reduced. This must be carried out in agreement with the vet.
When considering the amount of meat, it was our aim to have the optimum protein value for the dog in all Terra Canis menus. Veterinary medicine gives a clear recommendation here of an 18–33% protein content which we use as a basis for all our products.
In order to be able to more easily compare foods with each other, it is normal for vets and nutrition specialists to compare the content of each product’s dry mass after the natural fluid in the food has been removed. This is the only way of accurately comparing the protein values of each product with each other.
Lots of pet food on the market use less meat than we do. Instead they use meat meal or other sources of vegetable protein. As the information on the amount of protein is only a quantitative value, this statement does not provide any information of the quality of protein. This is why it is important to look at the composition of the product. High-quality dry foods should always have the amount of meat listed first as ingredient.

What is important about a balanced content of calcium and phosphor?

The ideal calcium-phosphor content is a value of 1.3–1.4: 1 and is used as basis for all our Terra Canis menus. The increased calcium requirements for young dogs is already included in our Puppy food range so no additional calcium supplements are necessary.

Is Canireo good for dental hygiene?

A dog’s set of teeth, as with a wolf’s set of teeth, is that of a predator which is made up of long fanged teeth and thin chewing areas. The belief that dry food has a cleaning effect on teeth is therefore wrong. The hard pellets in dry food are not chewed thoroughly, but are swallowed so that no cleaning effect can occur. Bones or solid dog chews are suitable for dental hygiene.

My dog is too thin. Which range should I feed?

If your dog does not have a sensitive stomach we recommend that you feed our Classic range with a low amount of gluten-free, nutritional pseudograin to provide extra energy. Otherwise the Puppy food range is suitable because it contains more energy. The feeding recommendation stated for the desired weight always applies.

Can I mix dry food and wet food?

Even for healthy dogs it is fundamentally important that there is a gap of at least eight hours between feeding wet and dry food. This is due to the digestion times of the two kinds of food. Wet food is broken down and digested in only six hours. Dry food needs 10–12 hours to be digested due to its different composition. If these two digestion processes overlap, sediments and fermentation occur in the dog’s gastrointestinal tract which attack the dogs mucous membrane. This can cause bloatedness and intolerances.

How do you carry out an elimination diet?

The basic idea of an elimination diet is to avoid all potential allergic substances which are known to the immune system. If different sorts of meat are used which the animal has never yet eaten there are no antibodies for this sort of meat. Consequently an immune response cannot be triggered. For this reason ‘exotic’ or generally unusual kinds of meat such as kangaroo, ostrich or buffalo are fed to allergic animals. One of these must be chosen at the start of an exclusion diet. Only this meat is then fed over a period of ten to twelve weeks. It must be ensured that during this time the animal cannot eat other kinds of animal protein, for example from the rubbish bin, the neighbour’s food bowl, or dog food. If symptoms improve it can be assumed that this kind of fresh meat is good for the dog.
Other foods, in addition to different meats, can also be a potential cause of allergy for the dog. Grains which contain gluten are very often a cause of an allergic reaction. But artificial preservatives, soya products or artificial aromas can also provoke reactions.

My dog doesn’t drink enough. What should I do?

Just as with food, tastes are different when it comes to water – one dog may prefer water fresh from the tap while another dog would rather wait until it has been standing in its bowl for a while before drinking. Particularly tough candidates need to be made to drink using special tricks – water fountains may prove useful here. Dogs which don’t drink much should always be fed wet food or soaked dry food to ensure that a large portion of water is consumed with every meal. In addition to wet food each dog requires roughly 10 ml of water for every kilogramme of its weight every day.

Why are the menus without grain softer and moister than those with grain?

Fresh meat, fruit and vegetables consist of up to 80% water when raw. A part of this water leaves the raw materials when they are heated. The water which is released during cooking quickly evaporates and the mixture in the pan becomes thicker. As our ingredients are cooked in closed cans, this water cannot evaporate and remains in the can. When there is no grain, starch and binding agent the content of the cans are always somewhat softer. However when the menu contains 5–10% grain it soaks up the water released from the meat, fruit and vegetables and binds it. The mixture becomes much firmer and more homogeneous.
The moisture from the raw materials is still contained in these menus but it is less visible because it has been soaked up by the grain.
Fresh water should always be provided together with food as it contains many nutrients

Why are there no 10–15 kg packs of dry food?

Canireo only came onto the market a few months ago. As a completely new quality concept has been realised in the dry food segment with Canireo we decided to first produce smaller packaging units to enable our customers to first get to know and test Canireo. Larger packaging units are planned any time now.

Why can’t I swap individual flavours in the gourmet packs or test packs?

Our gourmet and test packs are prepared in advance so that there are always enough of these packs available. Swapping menus after the packs have been prepared is therefore very time-consuming.

Is the food balanced or are additional supplements required?

All Terra Canis menus are balanced. No additional nutritional supplements are required. In addition to the fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs all menus are supplemented with sufficient organic eggshells, seaweed and mineral earth in order to guarantee sufficient nutrition. The value of these vital vitamins, minerals and trace elements are regularly checked by an independent laboratory and evaluated by our own veterinarian Hanna Stephan.

Can filling volume: Why don’t I get the specified weight?

All our menus are filled with an extra 5–10 grammes by our butcher. The most reliable way of testing if the actual net weight is the same as the grammes stated on the label is to weigh the can while it is still closed. The empty weight of the can including the lid should then be deducted. This value is the net weight of the contents of the can. Here are the weights of the empty cans with lid: 100g: 30g; 200g: 36g; 400g: 50g; 800g:92g

Why is Canireo so expensive?

All of the dry food currently available on the market is not made from 100% raw materials in genuine human grade quality, they are made on the basis of category 3 material (= waste material which is fundamentally or no longer, due to lack of freshness and quality, approved for human consumption). Dry food is primarily made from meat meal, animal meal or feather meal which is normally produced from so-called waste material (slaughter waste, substandard animal by-products). This animal and meat meal is much cheaper than the fresh meat in genuine human grade quality which we use.
In addition, most dry foods contain an extremely high amount of grain or starch consisting of wheat, barley, maize meal, rice flour, peasemeal or similar. These grain types and flours are also extremely cheap raw materials and are used in large amounts which makes this kind of dry food product much cheaper to produce than our Canireo.
In comparison, Canireo is made from 64% pure fresh muscle meat in genuine human grade quality. This costs 5–6 times more than the material described above. Even the vegetables, fruit and herbs are much more expensive than wheat, maize meal or beet pulp.
The result is that the costs of our raw materials are much higher than normal dry food brands due to their quality and species-appropriate composition, which also makes the price more expensive for our consumers.
In return Canireo provides you with a dry food on the basis of genuine fresh meat in 100% human grade quality.