By Sherri Romig CPDT-KA

Dog's Caloric Needs Chart

RER(kcal/day) = 30 (wt. in kg.) + 70

So, for a 40# dog, RER = 30 (<40/2.205>) + 70 = 614.21 kcal/day

We then multiply this number by our figure from Table 1.

So, for our 40#, neutered, normal activity animal, we would

multiply 614.21 kcal/day by 1.6 to get our daily caloric intake of 982.7.

* This number includes ALL calories for the day, including treats.

My veterinarian recommended using 1.3 as the figure to multiply

RER to help prevent overfeeding the dog.

The next step is to look at our dog food bag and find out how many

kcal/cup are in our food. We will then divide this number into our kcal/day

to get the number of cups per day we should be feeding our dog.

So, for example, if our food has 407kcal/cup, our math would look like this:

Kcal/day divided by kcal/cup = 982.7 / 407 = 2.4c/day.

* It is important to remember that this is just a guideline for the amount to feed. The actual amount of calories that your pet needs will vary based on many factors, including activity level, age, and individual metabolism. These figures are just a starting point and the amount that you feed should be adjusted based on your dog’s body condition.

* When weight reduction/gain is needed, calculate calories based on IDEAL weight, not CURRENT weight.

Calculating the Price of Food

Unfortunately, there is no quick and easy way to do this. The best method is to buy a bag of food and record the date that you open the bag and the date that you finish the bag. Then divide the price of the bag by the number of days it lasted to get price per day.

If you enjoy using the numbers, or would prefer to do the math before you buy, there is a somewhat complicated formula you can use. (based on formula at

1. kcal/kg x kg/bag = kcal/bag 3570×13.6 = 48552kcal/bag

2. kcal/bag divided by kcal/cup = cups/bag 48552/407 = 119.29c/bag

3. cups/bag divided by price/bag = price/cup 119.29/49.49 = 2.41/cup

4. cups/day (see above) x price/cup = price/day 2.41×2.41 = $5.78/day