When To Switch From Puppy To Adult Dog Food
Adulthood in most breeds is reached by 1-2 year but it mostly depends on the size and growth of the dog. Since it varies drastically in each breed, its best to consult a vet for the best time to make the switch. The transition to adult food should be slow and must be started by adding a bit of adult food into the puppy food and the proportion should be increased everyday according to the response you get from your dog. Generally it takes a week or two to make the complete transition to just feeding adult dog food.
The difference between a puppys food and an adult dogs food is very real. If those differences are not taken seriously it can have some severe consequences. Puppies are at risk for nutritional deficiencies if they regularly eat a diet designed for adults. Whereas, Adult dogs are at a risk of obesity if they regularly eat a diet designed for puppies. Contacting a vet is the best thing to do whenever youre confused about the needs of your dog.
Do Puppies Need Special Treats
Puppies are special and do deserve treats, but there are a few important guidelines to keep in mind. First, most of their calories should come from their complete, balanced kibble diet. Treats are not nutritionally balanced, so a lot of them can actually alter the nutritional balance in your puppys body.
Make sure that treats make up no more than 5-10% of their daily calorie intake . Second, puppy teeth and brand new adult teeth are quite fragile, so youll want to keep away from hard, big, crunchy treats or chews. Stick to softer, easy-to-chew treats.
Finally, puppy digestive systems are generally more sensitive than adults. When you shake things up with treats, you also risk shaking up the poop harmony of your puppys GI tract! For this reason, wed like to point out that puppy kibble makes a wonderful treat, especially if you act like its the best thing ever .
Things To Consider Before Switching To Adult Food
Maturity and adulthood can be difficult to predict. To be sure about your puppys age, you can talk to the shelter, breeder, or rescue groups where you adopted your dog as well as talking with a veterinarian to be certain of when to switch your puppy to dog food. The importance of switching lies with nutrition.
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When Do I Make The Switch From Puppy Food To Adult Food
Puppies can take anywhere from 1 to 2 years to reach adulthood. Growth and development are breed specific, so it is crucial to maintain ongoing consultations with your vet about how your puppy is progressing in the maturation process. Once your puppy reaches about 80% of his growth potential, it should be fine to switch to a food formula designed for adult dogs. For most breeds, this switch happens somewhere around the 1-year mark, but larger breeds take slightly longer to mature whereas smaller breeds grow quicker.
A healthy diet is the key to a healthy life for your dog. It is important to feed your dog high-quality food with the right nutrients based on his age, weight, and breed. When determining what kind of food to give to your dog, it is best to consult your vet to gain insight into any additional canine dietary needs or restrictions your dog may have. That dog food aisle may be daunting, but somewhere amidst all those options, there is a food that is just right for your dog.
- What Is The Difference Between Adult Dog Food And Puppy Food? Dog Food Insider, 10 Jan. 2017, www.dogfoodinsider.com/difference-adult-dog-food-puppy-food/.
- Whats the Difference Between Adult Dog Food and Puppy Food? PetMD, www.petmd.com/blogs/nutritionnuggets/dr-coates/2016/january/whats-difference-between-adult-dog-food-and-puppy-food.
- Lachlei, M.B. Is There Really a Difference in Puppy Foods? Pets, 21 Nov. 2017, www.pets.thenest.com/there-really-difference-puppy-foods-9869.html.
When To Switch Puppy To Adult Food
Once you know when your puppy will reach maturity, you can decide when to switch to adult food.
If your puppy will be full grown at 12 months, you can start transitioning him to an adult formula around his first birthday. It can take 7 to 10 days to make the switch, so youll want to plan for that before you start.
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How Much Is The Most Expensive Dog Food
For the same reason that there is no straight answer as to what the most expensive brand of dog food is, its also hard to pin down an exact number for how much the most expensive type of dog food costs by brand.
Some popular brands selling dog food can probably be assumed to cost the most, such as Costco and Petsmart.
What Is The Difference Between Adult Dog Food And Puppy Food
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Adult dogs and puppies are two completely different animals. They have different nutritional needs and different levels of energy. How do you know if you should be feeding your puppy a puppy food formula or a dog food formula? Lets take a look at the difference between adult dog food and puppy food so that you can make the best decision possible.
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When To Switch To Adult Dog Food
Some typical indicators of the right time to change from puppy food to dog food are dog size, breed and age. Depending on what size breed your dog is, the right age to transition to adult food will differ. Read on to find out more.
Small or medium breed puppies
Small and medium breed puppies are considered to be an adult at about one year of age. In this case, your dogs birthday indicates when to switch from puppy food. Toy breeds can be an exception to this, as some are considered to be adults at nine months of age. In general, small breed puppies are those who weigh less than 20 pounds at maturity. Medium breed puppies weigh between 21-50 pounds at maturity.
Large or giant breed puppies
Large or giant breed puppies take a little longer to reach maturity, and many of them are still growing until they turn two years old. In general, you should switch to adult food when your puppy is anywhere from 18 months to 24 months old. Large or giant breed puppies weight can vary greatly, so it doesnt offer a great insight into when to switch from puppy to dog food.
Regulations On Adult Dog Food And Puppy Food
AAFCO, or Association of American Feed Control Officials, has guidelines and regulations for what goes into adult dog food and puppy food. They have standards in place to define what is categorized as a puppy food and what is labeled as an adult dog food. Here is a list of a couple of the main ingredients in dog food as well as the minimum requirements and how they differ between adult dog food and puppy food.
Protein 22% for puppy food and 18% for adult dog foodFat 8% for puppy food and 5% for adult dog foodCalcium 1% for puppy food and 0.6% for adult dog foodPhosphorus 0.8% for puppy food and 0.5% for adult dog foodSodium 0.3% forpuppy food and 0.06% for adult dog food
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Is Adult Dog Food Really Different From Puppy Food
If you just adopted a new puppy, you might want to just get him regular adult dog food to make it easy since there are so many options out there.
It turns out puppy food and adult dog food are actually really different, and theres an important reason why you shouldnt feed your puppy adult dog food.
The Dodo spoke to Dr. Sara Ochoa, a veterinarian consultant at Senior Tail Waggers, to find out why puppies cant eat adult dog food and how to choose a puppy food.
When To Switch A Puppy To Dog Food
According to Dr. Ochoa, you should wait until your puppys fully grown to start feeding him adult dog food.
The age at which a puppy matures will depend on his size, so when you can start feeding dog food will vary. This may be at 6 to 8 months for smaller dogs , 12 to 16 months for medium-sized dogs , and 2 years for large- and giant-breed dogs , Dr. Ochoa told The Dodo.
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Adult Dog Food Vs Puppy Food: A Food For Every Age
Age is one of the most common ways brands differentiate their products within their own variety of options. Typically the three classifications you will see are puppy, adult dog, and senior. Puppy formula is designed for dogs up to two years of age while adult dog food is typically for dogs ages two through six. When it comes to senior dog food, this variety is usually for dogs seven years and older. Each classification of food plays a particular role in the health of your dog, especially in regards to what nutrients their bodies need at certain stages of life. While the differences between a senior diet and regular adult dog food arent significant, the differences between adult dog food and puppy food are substantial.
How Do I Make The Switch
When switching to adult dog food you should allow 7-10 days for the transition. Gradually add more adult dog food and less of their puppy food to your pups dish each day until the change is complete. This gradual transition will help avoid dietary upsets.
Remember individual needs can vary. Feed your dog to maintain an ideal body condition.
Slight appetite changes and occasional digestive upsets are normal in young dogs. If upsets become severe or last longer than a day or two, contact your vet.
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Overview Of Puppy Food:
Puppy food is specifically formulated for puppies up to one year, pregnant dogs, and lactating dogs. These recipes have a lot of nutrients packed into small bites, including a higher protein content and fat content, to ensure your pup gets all it needs for healthy development in portions designed for a smaller stomach. Generally, puppies require almost double the calories that adult dogs of a similar size do, but they have a much smaller stomach.
Puppies also need between 22% and 32% of their daily intake from protein, compared to 18% to 28% for adult dogs. Puppies need the full spectrum of amino acids for all their developmental needs, which include tryptophan, phenylalanine, lysine, methionine, valine, threonine, isoleucine, leucine, arginine, and histidine. Without these nutrients, a puppy may struggle to maintain its optimal rate of growth, which is why a complete and balanced puppy food is so important.
Can Puppies Eat The Same Food As Adult Dogs
If you already own a dog and just added a new puppy to your pack, it may seem practical to feed your new addition the same food that your adult dog already eats. However, even though your puppy may chow down with no apparent issues, your puppy is not eating the diet that fits their needs. For example, would you feed a newborn baby a plate of spaghetti and meatballs for dinner? Lets hope not. Just like human babies, puppies need appropriate food for their small stature.
Your puppy has a small body, but needs big calories to support growth and development. So, while it may be tempting to let them chow away at anything they want since they’re growing, it’s important to make sure each mouthful provides the correct amount of protein and calories without overwhelming their little bodies. In addition, many small breed puppies require extra small food or else their tiny teeth will have trouble chewing.
Look at your puppy or adult dog’s food label to ensure you are buying the food that is right for them in their current life stage. Your puppy’s early growth and development are what will set them up for the rest of their adult life. Every puppy is unique, so if you have questions about their diet or feeding schedule, always consult your breeder or veterinariantheyre always ready to help!
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Why Is Fat Content In Puppy Food So Important
Fat keeps skin and hair healthy, and supports brain and eyesight development. Fats are highly digestible and provide fatty acids to your pet.
All fats are made of fatty acids, according to PetMD. These fatty acids can be thought of as the building blocks of the different types of fats.
PetMD notes that fat is an energy source for dogs fat provides twice the amount of dietary energy that protein and carbs do. In addition, fats:
- Transport nutrients across cell membranes
- Produce metabolites that help control inflammation
- Help form hormones like estrogen, testosterone and progesterone
- Provide a barrier against bacterial and viral invasions
- Help your dog feel full
- Help your dogs body absorb fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K.
What Is The Difference Between Puppy And Junior Food
Puppy and junior food are both formulated for growing dogs. All puppies once weaned at around 6-7 weeks should be fed on James Wellbeloved puppy food. Depending on the adult size of the dog your puppy may benefit from being fed a junior food designed as a follow on food for medium and large breed dogs. Its all to do with the age at which dogs mature For example small dogs will be mature at 6 months and can gradually move onto their own small breed adult food then whilst large dogs will continue to grow well into their second year and will benefit from being fed a large breed junior food. Check out our feeding guides for more details.
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Is There A Difference Between Puppy Food And Dog Food
Yes, there is a difference between puppy and adult dog food, and it’s more than the calorie count, though calories are an important factor.
Dogs at different stages of development have vastly different needs:
- Puppies use A LOT of energy, so they need a lot of calories, and they have special nutrient requirements to build healthy muscles, bones, eyesight, etc.
- Adult dogs need protein, calories, and nutrients in certain amounts to maintain the proper weight and energy levels and preserve their health.
- Senior dogs use less energy, so they need a very particular amount of protein and calories to maintain their weight, and special nutrient requirements can prevent the onset of diseases and health conditions that become risks as the dog ages.
Puppy Food Has More Calories
We all know that puppies can be rambunctious and full of energy. Their bodies are busy growing and becoming strong.
Because of this, they need more calories because they burn more!
Puppy food is more calorie-dense, meaning its ingredients have a higher calorie count to meet the puppy’s needs.
Puppies need four key ingredients to have an optimal nutritional diet. These ingredients are:
Depending on the breed and size of the puppy, the amounts of these nutrients that are needed may vary.
However, puppies need more of these nutrients than adult dogs do.
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Can A Puppy Eat Adult Dog Food
Yes, but it is not recommended because there are significant differences between adult and puppy food. Puppies need a host of vitamins, minerals, proteins and calcium that adult dogs dont. While feeding a puppy adult dog food may not seem important or show any immediate health concerns, it could very well manifest itself as serious issues later in their lives.
How To Choose A Puppy Food
When looking for a puppy food, a good place to start is by asking your vet for recommendations.
According to Dr. Ochoa, you should look for a food where the protein levels are 22 to 32 percent. This lines up with the AAFCO recommendation for puppy foods to contain at least 22 percent protein and will ensure that your puppy gets all the nutrients he needs to keep up his energy and grow up to be a healthy dog.
In addition to protein, you should check the food bag to see what the nutritional analysis is. Most dog foods will include a breakdown of the percentage of protein, fat and other important nutrients to let you know that the amounts are aligned with those recommended by the AAFCO.
And make sure the food is made with real ingredients, such as lamb, beef and corn. The first ingredient in the food should ideally be a natural ingredient.
Youll also want to be sure to choose food thats made for the size of your puppy. Foods for small puppies and big puppies are formulated differently because they have different growth needs. Small dogs also need smaller pieces of food because they have smaller mouths.
Some brands that Dr. Ochoa recommends include Purina Pro Plan, Royal Canin, Eukanuba and Hills Science Diet.
So its really important to feed your puppy the right food so he grows up to be a healthy dog and has enough energy for the puppy zoomies.
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Adult Dogs & Puppies: Food Ingredients
This is where the debate over puppy food vs dog food can vary. On the surface, puppy food vs dog food seem to include the same ingredients many people dont realize that there are differences between puppy food and dog food at first glance. Dont let that color your opinion on the matter. While the two different foods may contain similar ingredients, its the quantity that makes all the difference. When you look at the meat proteins and fats that are in adult dog food, youll notice that the percentages are much less. Thats because your adult dog requires more specific nutritional values, while puppies need more of others. They wont require the heavy levels of protein and calcium that your puppy does. Once a dog reaches adulthood or becomes more senior, they will only require enough vitamins, proteins and minerals to maintain their energy levels. If you have a lap dog, they will require even less as they do not exert the amount of energy a more active adult dog or puppy will. The AAFCO has ensured that all dog food suppliers at least meet the basic needs of nutrition before they allow a product to reach the market. Its imperative that we, as pet owners, educate ourselves on the best practices for raising our pets as healthy as possible.