The monks grew the puppies big back in the 1800s on purpose. After all, Saint Bernards had to be large and powerful enough to seize full-grown men, then pull them through the frozen Alpine tundra to safety. These gentle giants, which weighed upwards of 220 pounds when fully developed, braved blizzards and saved lives.
There’s not much record of how the monks fed the breed to create such larger-than-life heroes, but we do know science then wasn’t what it is today. They probably gave the animals what food was available—and a lot of it—without much consideration to the nutrition of the cocktail they were offering up. Today, we know that Saints and other large-breed puppies have different dietary needs than their smaller canine cousins.
In fact, the physical well-being of these lovely behemoths depends upon a special formula. Without the right balance of protein, calcium and phosphorus levels, such puppies tend to overdo it. Simply put, they grow too fast and their developing bones can’t handle the weight. Their skeletal systems bend and break. Many of these beautiful creatures are hobbled for life as a result. Here’s what you need to know to grow big and healthy puppies:
• Large-breed puppies (defined as those animals which are expected to weight more than 50 pounds as adults) should eat TK? per serving, TK three times per day.
• The makeup of their food should include 27 percent protein, 15 percent fat, 0.8 to 0.9 percent calcium and 0.7 percent phosphorus to ensure good health.
• The perfect balance of protein, energy and minerals for large-breed pets is available in Eukanuba puppy formulas.
As the ancient monks knew, big puppies are better dogs. Now make sure you give yours a healthy foundation for life.