Wednesday, November 29, 2023

When Do You Switch Puppy Food To Dog Food

Timeline For Medium/large Breeds

How to Change your pets food

The first portion of the timeline for small breeds applies to larger breeds, but the difference is that large breed pups have to stay on puppy food for a longer amount of time. You can begin to switch your large or giant breed puppy adult food at around one year of age, or a little longer if yours does not seem ready to make the switch to adult formula yet. Each dogs diet is a bit subjective, so pay attention to when the puppy formula doesnt seem to quite be having the same effects on your dog as it once had. If youre unsure, simply ask the dogtor as they know best!

When To Switch From Puppy Food To Adult Dog Food

So, what is the best time to switch from puppy food to adult dog food?

Like humans, dogs have different nutrition requirements for different life stages. Puppies need food that has two and a half times the calories of adult dog food to provide the energy they need in order to grow as quickly as they do. They also need more protein to build muscle and more calcium and phosphorous to grow strong, healthy bones. And since their stomachs are small and their digestive systems are immature, they need food thats easy to digest.

Puppy food fills all of these requirements, but switching over to adult dog food at the right time is essential to prevent obesity, the number one nutritional disease and a top cause of death in adult dogs, as well as other health problems due to inappropriate nutrition.

Puppy Food Has Nutrients Growing Dogs Need

Puppy food has a lot of extra nutrients and protein that adult dog food may lack.1 A growing dog thats building muscle and bone needs more nutrients and calories to maintain healthy development. Puppies, especially those of a larger breed, need the right amount of fatty acids, fiber, and protein, along with controlled amounts of calcium so bones grow at the proper rate. They also need certain omega-3 fatty acids for proper development.2 This is why puppies need food formulated for their nutritional needs, rather than adult dog food.

AvoDerm Natural dog food offers two formulas created especially for puppies. The canned Puppy Chicken & Rice Formula has chicken as the first ingredient to help any puppies with food sensitivities to other proteins. Its also made with avocado, which is rich in antioxidants that can help promote a healthy immune system.

If you prefer dry kibble, AvoDerm Natural dog food offers a Puppy Chicken Meal & Brown Rice Formula. This has just the right balance of protein, fat, and nutrients that puppies need. Its also corn- and wheat-free, which is great for puppies with more sensitive stomachs.

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Tips For Transitioning: How To Switch Dog Food Safely

There comes a time in every dogs life when they need a change in food. Maybe you are switching dog food because your dog has grown from puppy to adult, or adult to senior. Or perhaps your dog has a new need, or their tastes have simply changed. Whatever the reason for changing dog food, its important to know how to switch to a new dog food gradually.

What Kind Of Puppy Treats Should I Give

When Should I Change My Dogs Food?

Many pet owners like to reward their dogs with treats, but its best to limit them. Because puppies need so many nutrients to grow, its important to give them food that provides complete and balanced nutrition. A puppy should get most of their calories from puppy food rather than from treats, which typically dont provide complete nutrition.

Aim for no more than 5% of calories from treats, say nutrition experts at the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Choose treats that are the right size for your puppy. A Yorkshire terrier, for instance, doesnt need an extra-large dog biscuit. And avoid table scraps, which teach your puppy at a young age to beg for treats at the table and can cause digestive upset and pancreatitis, a serious illness.


Consider giving other types of treats to deepen the bond with your puppy. Healthy snacks like bits of carrot, green beans, or bell peppers give your puppy something to crunch without many calories. And remember, in your puppys mind, spending time with you is the best treat of all.

Play is a treat, training is a treat, learning tricks is a treat, Buffington says. Dogs are a pack species, and they want to be a member of the pack. Anything a member of the pack does with them is positive reinforcement.

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Dry Food Wet Food Or Both

Many pet-food companies have worked with canine-nutrition scientists to develop special formulas for both large- and small-breed puppies.

  • Canned food is the most expensive to feed, and dogs often find it most palatable. Be careful of all-meat claims, though. Your dog should have a complete, balanced diet to fulfill nutritional requirements. Meat alone may not do it.
  • Semi-moist food is available in one-serving packets. It is usually made to look like hamburger.
  • Kibble is the most economical, and the major makers offer a complete and balanced diet for dogs of all sizes and ages. Dry food can be fed exactly as it comes from the bag.

Some dog owners say there is an oral-hygiene advantage in hard kibble because the friction produced helps to keep the gums and teeth healthy. Kibble can be moistened, either with water or canned food. Although unnecessary, that addition may make food tastier.

How To Transition Puppy To An Adult Dog Food

When you stop feeding puppy food, you must change more than just the food he eats. The number of meals and portion sizes will shift, too.

Most puppies eat three meals a day, but adult dogs can eat just two meals per day. The feeding guide on your dogs food label will tell you how much to feed your dog each day and to split the amount into two meals.

When its time to transition your puppy to an adult dog food, do so gradually. A gradual transition helps prevent stomach upset.

Heres a sample transitional feeding plan:

  • Days 1 to 2: Feed 3/4 of the normal amount of puppy food and add 1/4 adult dog food.
  • Days 3 to 4: Serve half puppy food and half adult dog food.
  • Days 5 to 7: Feed 1/4 puppy food and 3/4 adult dog food.
  • Days 8 to 10: Serve only adult dog food.

If your dog resists eating the adult food or experiences an upset stomach, extend the transition time as needed. Consult with your veterinarian for more help if needed.

For more information and tips on puppy and dog nutrition from our experts, visit our Pet Expertise page.

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Do Puppies Still Need Milk After 8 Weeks

Puppies usually do not need milk after 8 weeks of age and in fact, stop taking milk a few days before then. However, depending on the breed and the specific health of your puppy, he might need some amount of milk until about 6 to 10 weeks of age. During the weaning period, the best form of milk for the puppy is his mothers milk, if available. The change from this nursing milk to commercial puppy milk to ultimately no milk should be gradual and well calculated.

Avoid feeding your puppy with cows milk because it doesnt suit most breeds of puppies, especially those that are lactose intolerant. Also, your puppy needs certain levels of phosphorus and calcium to fulfill his nutritional needs at this crucial stage of his life and growth. Cows milk does not contain the required levels and is also diluted, implying that your puppy can suffer from diarrhea and get quickly dehydrated.

The commercially-available puppy milk replacer formulas, if chosen well, are good options for your puppy. They can be available in liquid form or as a powder that needs to be reconstituted. Consult your vet for the precise brand of formula to be given, depending on the age, breed and overall health of your puppy.

Read next

How To Transition Dog Food

How to Change your dogs food

Your dog may enthusiastically dive into their new dog food, but their system will likely need some time to adjust to a new diet. When switching dog food, our nutritionist Sara recommends making a slow, measured, and gradual change between over a 7-10 day period to help your dog avoid digestive upset. Thats something that both you and your dog will appreciate!

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When Is The Right Time To Switch To Adult Dog Food

Determining when to make the switch from puppy to adult dog food depends on your puppys size and breed, as well as his metabolism. Simply put, small and large breed puppies develop at different rates, meaning that some dogs will make the switch to adult food at different life stages. At Bil-Jac, we agree with our friends at and recommend the following guidelines:

  • Smaller breeds mature more quickly and can be switched at about 9 months to 1 year
  • Medium breeds can be switched at around 1 year of age
  • Large and giant breed dogs can transition anywhere from 1 year to 18 months

Of course, one to two years is quite a wide range of time. Every dog is different, so keep an eye on how much food your dog eats. Skipping meals or leaving some food behind is one notable sign that your furry friend is ready for a switch. If you notice that your best friend is regularly leaving some of her puppy food behind in the bowl, its probably time to make the jump to an adult formula.

Your dogs body condition can also help you figure out when its time to switch to adult food. Since puppy formulas are designed to support rapid growth, once a puppy is first weaned, splitting up meals info three feeding a day si recommended.

When To Transition Your Dog’s Food

Remember these tips when switching your dogs food:

  • Puppies become adults at 12 months of age and should transition to an adult dog food to ensure they are receiving proper nutrient levels for adult dogs. If you have a large breed dog, talk to your vet first, as they may recommend keeping them on their puppy food a few months longer to ensure they get the proper calories to grow to their full adult form.
  • Remember large and small breed puppies should be transitioned to the appropriate breed-size adult dog food to ensure that their special needs are met.
  • For small and medium size dogs who are older about the age of 7 they should transition to a mature adult or senior dog food to ensure they are receiving the appropriate level of nutrients for that older lifestage.
  • Larger breed dogs should transition to a senior dog food around the age of 6 as their bones and muscles age a little quicker than their smaller counterparts.
  • Follow the feeding guidelines: when mixing the old and new food together, it is important to continue to feed the proper amounts, so be sure to use measuring cups and do your best to get the instructed calorie count correct.

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Reasons For Changing Dog Foods

Its okay to switch dog food. In fact, at some point, it may be necessary. Here are a few reasons you may need to switch up your dogs food:

  • Age: Around their first birthday , puppies need to transition to an adult dog food. Around age seven, most dogs are considered senior and may benefit from switching to a senior formula.
  • Weight: If your dog is not his ideal body condition, your veterinarian may recommend a weight management formula. Not all weight changes need to be addressed through a change in the food itself. It may just require feeding more or less of the current food. Your veterinarian can help you determine whats best for your dog.
  • Activity Levels: Dogs who participate in shows, sporting or agility events or who have demanding jobs may need a formula to support those activities. These types of dog foods often have higher levels of protein and calories. As dogs retire from these activities, they may need to switch to a lower-calorie food to avoid unnecessary weight gain.
  • Health: Some foods have been formulated to help veterinarians nutritionally manage certain health conditions. For example, your veterinarian may prescribe a therapeutic formula to help support the unique nutritional needs of dogs with GI conditions.

When To Make The Transition

How Do I Switch or Transition Foods for My Dog?

Decipheringwhen to make the switch from puppy food to adult food can have a bigimpact on your dog’s health. You want to make sure that your puppy isstill getting the nutrients that he requires, and at the same timeswitching him to adult dog food when his nutritional needs change. Buthow do you know when your dog’s nutritional needs have changed?

Theanswer is relatively based on the size and breed of your dog. Whilemixed dogs can be a little more complicated to gauge, you can still usethe overall size of your dog as an indicator of when his food needs tobe changed. So, the first thing you will need to do is determine whichof the following categories that your dog fits into: small-breed,medium-breed, large-breed or giant-breed.

Dogsthat are considered to be small-breed dogs typically do not grow toweigh more than 20 pounds. Small-breed dogs can safely be switched toadult formula around nine months of age. A medium-breed dog is the nextstep up, averaging a full grown weight of 20 to 50 pounds and requirewill require that their food be switched at around one year of age.

Largeand giant-breed dogs, on the other hand, will both fall into the sametime range for having their food switched. These breeds of dogstypically grow to be anywhere from 50 to 150 pounds and they should beswitched to adult dog food around one to two years of age.

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How To Know When To Switch To Adult Dog Food

How long should a puppy eat puppy food? Maybe youve wondered this yourself, and rightly so. It can be a confusing topic, but its important to know when your puppy is ready to make the transition to adult dog food.

The important thing to realize is that because puppies are still growing, they need more calories and nutrition than adults. In fact, feeding an adult diet to a puppy could lead to nutritional deficiencies.

Likewise, feeding a puppy diet to an adult could cause excessive weight gain and its related issues. This is important to avoid, since obesity is the most common nutrition-related issue for canines. Knowing when to switch to adult dog food will help your puppy grow into a happy, healthy dog.

That being said, theres no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. Instead, youll want to change from puppy food to dog food based on your dogs breed, size, and age. Read on to learn how and when to switch to adult dog food.

How Long Should A Puppy Eat Puppy Food

Raising a puppy can be so much fun. Your cute, little fur baby is all over the place playing, wagging his tail, and bringing joy to your home. But as he grows, you eventually find yourself wondering how long your puppy should keep eating puppy food. Depending on your dogs breed and size, you typically want to switch from puppy food to dog food sometime between seven and 14 months of age, although there are outliers.

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Switching Raw Or Homemade Dog Food To Kibble

Many owners may try a variety of diets for their dog over the course of their life. If your dog has been eating raw, fresh food, or homemade dog food, and you would now like to switch them back to kibble, you may be wondering the best way to transition your dog. In this article, well take a look at the best ways to transition your dog to kibble to minimize an upset stomach and other concerns.

Perhaps your dog was eating raw in their prior home, and you would prefer they eat kibble now. Maybe you switched your dog to raw hoping for health benefits, but raw food was not a good fit for your dog.

You might even be needing to switch from raw to kibble for health reasons, such as if your dogs condition now requires a specially formulated kibble.

No matter the reason, not much exists on transitioning your dog from raw to kibble. Especially when you compare the amount of information, or misinformation, out there on how to transition your dog the other way round, from kibble to raw.

Toy Teacup And Tiny Dog Breeds

BEST WAY TO SWITCH TO RAW DOG FOOD: Tips and Tricks to Start Your Dog on a DIY Raw Food Diet

Toy, teacup and tiny dog breeds include breeds such as Yorkshire Terrier, Maltese, Chihuahua, Shih Tzu, Pomeranian, Miniature Pinscher, etc. Fully grown, these cute little canines generally weigh 12 pounds or less. Most tiny dogs should reach their adult weight, such as it is, around 8-10 months old.

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How To Transition From Puppy Formula To Adult Formula Or All

When that one-time ball of fluff is done growing, its time to transition to an adult formula. Sudden changes in food can be upsetting to a dogs gastrointestinal system. For that reason, many brands recommend a phased approach, starting with a small ratio of adult food to puppy food, and gradually increasing that adult ratio.

However, if youre feeding your puppy NutriSource brands from the start, the phased approach isnt necessary. in particular NutriSource chicken and rice recipes transition exceptionally well from puppy to adult formulations.

If youre feeding your dog a brand that does require a phased approach, heres a basic formula to follow:

  • Day 1: 80% puppy formula to 20% adult formula
  • Day 3: 50-50 mix of puppy and adult formula
  • Day 5: 20% puppy formula to 80% adult formula
  • Day 7: 100% adult formula

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