Feeding your new puppy and beyond will help you when you bring home your new puppy and how to care for him. As you take care of him, are you aware of what his nutritional needs and how much to feed him? This article will provide answers to these questions.
Before you bring your puppy home you will have to be sure that your home is puppy ready.
Your new puppy will experience rapid growth and development. Puppies require different levels of nutrients than older dogs. Basically, provide your young pup with puppy food for his first year.
Watch the video below on feeding new puppies.
The topics that will be covered below are:
- Feeding for the first few days
- Types of dog food
- Feeding my dog table scraps
- Cow’s milk
- Puppy’s feeding schedule
- How Much Should I feed my puppy?
- Dog Treats
- Puppies growing into adulthood
When you bring home your new puppy, it’s a good idea to continue to feeding the same type and brand of food and use the same feeding schedule the puppy was on before you brought him home. Then, slowly start using the food you have chosen based on information you received from the breeder or veterinarian.
When you need to change a pet’s food you need to switch to the new food slowly to prevent intestinal upset. Slowly means over a course of 7 to 10 days where you go from 100% of the old food to 100% of the new food. Here is a sample schedule to follow:
- Start with a mixture of 25% new food 75% old food for the first three days.
- Next, 50% of old and 50% of the new for the next three days.
- Next, 75% new and 25% old for the next three days.
- Then on the tenth day, give him 100% of the new food.
If at any time you should observe your puppy vomiting, or have loose stools or appears constipated, slow the rate down at which you are switching him over to the new food.
There are three types of dog food processed commercially and they are: dry kibble, semi-moist (sealed packages), and moist (canned). Most trainers and veterinarians recommend dry kibble food. Canned foods are typically higher in fat and have more water as much as 80%. Semi-moist dog food has 55% water and has a higher content of salt or sugar levels for preservation.
Dry dog foods contain between 9 to 11% water and are made of the same quality ingredients as the other types. Another benefit of dry kibble dog food is its helps with controlling tartar build-up on their teeth.
With dog food, you pretty much get what you pay for. Economic brands are cheap and made of the cheapest ingredients. This means that their energy values are lower and importantly because they use poorer grade proteins with lower digestibility, so the food passes through their system without being absorbed. This will cause poor health in your pet at they age and increase the amount of food you are buying to provide your dog with the proper vitamins and minerals they require in the food they eat.
Premium brands provide a higher quality of ingredients that provides your dog with the greatest digestibility and will not need to eat as much (less to pick up in the yard). Regular brands fall somewhere in between. Check with your veterinarian for the best food for your dog to buy.
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Under no circumstances should you ever feed your puppy or dog table scrapes. Why? Because once you start you will have a difficult time in stopping. Besides, table scrapes do not provide your dog with the proper nutrition and minerals. Table scrapes are usually higher in calories and are not well-balanced. This is the purpose of the dog food you purchase. This can also be a cause in your dog becoming overweight and obese.
Table scrapes lack the vitamins and minerals that dogs require. Table scrapes may cause diarrhea or other gastrointestinal problems. Training your dog will become more difficult when feeding him table scrapes. The best thing you can do is do not start. Plan his meals around your eating times which will help him not to go to the table to beg for food.
If you should see your pet beg for food, give him one of his favorite treats. Over time, he will stop his begging.
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Cow’s milk has sugar lactose which can be harmful for dogs. Dogs do not have the enzyme lactase that is necessary to digest it. Most dogs will develop diarrhea or softer stools with milk. The bottom line here is not to give your dog cow’s milk at any time. They don’t need it.
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What should the proper feeding schedule be? Your puppy’s feeding schedule will be dictated by your own personal schedule. You do not want to leave his food out so he can eat whenever he wants. You need to be there for the feedings because you want him to be on a set schedule. Also, this will help in developing a normal routine to do his business outside and not on the floor or anywhere else in the home.
Puppies under six months should be fed three times a day. After six months, twice a day. After his feeding, he will need to go to out and do his business. If you leave is food bowl out, you may be surprised when you get home.
Your vet can also help you in determining his proper feeding schedule.
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Very important, do not let the label on the back of the bag or can dictate how much your puppy should eat. This is just a starting point. Usually, puppies will eat less than what the label says. Adjust the amount fed to maintain your puppy at an optimal weight. You can let your veterinarian assist you in determining the proper amount to feed your pet. Also, have plenty water available after every meal.
A dog’s breed will also play a role in determining how much to feed him.
Do not be tempted to feed your dog more than what they really need. Let the dog’s body dictate the amount of food to be eaten. By giving him more, you may artificially accelerate his body growth which can cause problems. Consult your veterinarian first before feeding your puppy more food.
You also want to be sure not to cause your puppy to gain more weight than for his breed. You must control any overweight issues if your puppy should show any signs of weight gain that’s more than his breed and age should be and can lead to obesity.
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Can I give dog treats to my dog? Yes! Treats should never exceed more than 10% of your puppy or dog’s total caloric intake for the day. The food should be his main source of his nutritional needs. Do not fill your puppy up with treats before meal time.
Hard to chew treats can be helpful to improve dental health by exercising the gums and scraping the teeth. It will satisfy his need to chew. Treats are to be used for the training sessions you will have with your dog and reward him when he displays the right behavior. Never, give your dog a treat when he does not show the proper behavior. Be careful not to overdo treats as he can become overweight.
Use only the healthful treats for your dog made with good ingredients. They may cost more, but they will be healthier for your pet.
Never, I say never, feed your dog table scrapes as these are not nutritious for him.
Puppies will need to drink a lot of water. They need water and should not be deprived of it. The puppy cannot lose more than 15% of his body water or he will die. So, it’s very important that his water bowl be full and he be hydrated at all times.
A rule of thumb, all dogs need one ounce of water for every pound of body weight.
Always be sure that when you are away from home that his water bowl is full of fresh water. Having cool water is inviting for dogs. It is your responsibility that your pet receives sufficient water through the day.
Puppies will need more water because of their growth. As they grow into adult dogs, their water needs will diminish. Be sure to change his water bowl daily with fresh water. This is vital for having a healthy puppy.
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As puppies grow into adulthood, usually by the end of the first year for small dogs and up to two years for medium to large size dogs, you probably will be feeding him less food and in most cases twice a day. The amount of food will be based on his weight, breed and size. You want him to maintain his proper weight.
During this period, observe if your dog is gaining weight. An overweight dog can will develop health problems if it’s not corrected. If you should notice your dog gaining weight, feed him less and let him exercise more until the excess weight is lost. Then resume is normal feeding schedule. If you should notice obesity, contact your veterinarian to ensure it’s not disease or medical related.
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As you can see, carrying for your puppy needs will require some attention from you and other family members. It’s vital that you begin his training as soon as you bring him home. He has certain behaviors that come natural to him and will need some time to break him of them.
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