ACS Distance Education UK
Feeding is a factor which has a great effect on the health of all animals, especially captive animals. Variations in feeding can affect animals in any of the following ways:
a) Feeding too little or too much food to the animal. Too little food will cause a loss of production from the animal, and in severe cases may lead to malnutrition and death from starvation. Over feeding can lead to animals becoming over fat and unhealthy.
b) Feeding a ration which is not balanced for the particular animal's needs. Deficiencies of protein, major minerals, trace elements, vitamins, and even water; can lead to many different deficiency diseases.
c) Feeding a ration that contains a substance that is toxic to the animal.
d) Allowing the animal to eat food, or to drink water which has been contaminated by bacteria or parasites such as worms.
e) The health of the animal can be affected positively by feeding a diet that increases its resistance to bacterial disease.
f) Changing the staple feed of animals especially young animals should be done gradually over a number of days.
g) Food must be palatable.
h) For captive animals food should be presented in an interesting way.