Why we know gundogs

Hiedi Hutchinson

Blog , +1

October 13, 2017

Complete and Balanced Nutrition

Diet has a critical role in enhancing of energy utilization and maximising performance in the sporting dog.

Our products have been formulated to meet the nutrient profiles of specific life stages, and energy requirements of any sporting dog. We have designed specialist diets suitable for all breeds of dog, of any age, or activity level. It’s just a case of finding the most suitable diet, within the Skinner’s product range, for your dog.


The palatability and acceptability of a food is a crucial consideration; your dog must find the food palatable to actually eat the food, and hence gain optimal nutrition. Here at Skinner’s we use only the finest natural ingredients which make our diet’s incredibly palatable. We do not include any meat digests, a processed bi-product which many other manufacturers may use to increase diet palatability. This is because our formulations are of such a high quality and specificity that they are tasty on their own.


As a company we dedicate ourselves to producing only the highest quality products. We pride ourselves in each aspect of quality; from the suppliers and the raw ingredients to the diets we manufacture, this is something that will never change.



There is much debate about the use of grains in dog food; in actual fact there is nothing wrong with using grains for carbohydrate. Those found in Skinner’s are only of exceptional quality, many of which have been sourced from the fields surrounding the Skinner’s Mill!

Each grain has a “glycemic index” or G.I. which is the ability of that particular carbohydrate to raise blood sugar level. For example, the rice found in our hypoallergenic products has a relatively high G.I. and so can stimulate a rapid rise in blood sugar whilst wheat or maize found in the Field & Trial Muesli, Working 23 or Crunchy has lower G.I. and so will cause a lower blood sugar level.

In the optimal diet for hunting dogs, rice is an excellent carbohydrate source for this reason. The rapid rise in blood sugar provides a fast release of energy before the dog begins burning glycogen (fat stored within muscle).

Grains with a low G.I (wheat, barley, maize) provide a much slower burning source of energy, as they do not provide the dog with the instant sugar high from more easily digested carbohydrate. Wheat, barley, maize and oats can be found in many of our diets, largely because they are a vital source of complex carbohydrates and a great source of fibre. Dogs working out in the field for several hours will rely heavily on glycogen and glucose stores, and in this case complex carbohydrates within the diet can prove to be extremely beneficial. These carbohydrates in essence, are key in providing stamina and endurance energy.

The product range at Skinner’s caters for both those dogs which require a low G.I. and those which require a more instant source of energy, as we are aware that each dog is different.


A lot of focus of gundog nutrition is on the protein content of a diet, and to some degree this recognition is justified.

Surprisingly the break down and oxidation of proteins actually only accounts for 5-10% of the totally energy burned during exercise.

Elevated protein levels are essential for the sporting gundog because these dogs utilize protein in the creation, maintenance and repair of muscle tissue in particular; the muscle size, volume of blood plasma and red blood cells and the density of blood vessels within muscle all increase with training. Cells, tissue and enzymes are formed from amino acids, the constituents of protein and so, the dietary requirement of protein should increase to facilitate this.

The products within the Skinner’s product range contain only single sources of animal-based proteins; these are all of the highest quality as we only use meat that is fit for human consumption. Using a single source of protein puts less strain on the dog’s digestive tract. Because we use only animal proteins, which have a much higher biological value than plant based proteins, the dog is able to digest and utilise these proteins more effectively and as a result will gain much more nutritional benefit.

The percentage of protein within the Skinner’s products range from anywhere between 17.5-30%, and so we are able to provide sufficient nutrients for all gundogs at any point of the year; most feed a lower protein diet in the off season switching to a higher protein content a few weeks before the shooting season begins.


Fat is not a bad word when it comes to keeping an athletic dog healthy. We include either chicken fat or sunflower oil within our range of products. These fats are rich in of an omega 6 and 9 fatty acids, oleic and linoleic acid, which offer many canine health benefits and provide significant quantities of vitamin E, sterols, and other aliphatic hydrocarbons, terpene and methyl ketones.

Fat also acts as a more efficient energy source for dogs, so a high-performance dog requires food with a high quality fat content, such as that found within our product range.


  • A nutrient-dense diet that provides enough energy within a small quantity
  • High quality single animal-based protein source
  • A fibre source to promote intestinal health
  • High palatability
  • Easily Digestible
  • High metabolizable energy content
  • Good dental health and contribution
  • Little preparation, easy to store

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