Tuesday, May 28, 2024

When To Stop Giving Dog Puppy Food

Follow The Feeding Directions On The Bag

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Theres no universal portion that will meet the needs of every pup. Whether youve opted for a puppy formula or an all-stages formula, follow the feeding directions provided by the brand to guide you. High-quality brands, like NutriSource, are dense in calories and nutrients, which means youll need to put around 30 to 40% less food in the bowl than you would, say, a supermarket brand. Using your puppys age and weight as a guide, you can adjust the portion as they grow.

Make The Change Gradually

Regardless of your pups age at the time of the food transition, it is important to make said transition gradually.

Start by mixing in a little adult dog food with your pups typical puppy food diet. About 10% 20% is of the new food is ideal. If your pup tolerates that well , you can double the amount of new food the next day. Always try to minimize intestinal distress, and dont be afraid to slow down the transition if necessary.

It should usually take about a week or so to make the full transition from 100% puppy food to 100% adult food.

When Should A Puppy Start Eating Solid Food

Puppies should get solid food starting at about four weeks, when theyâre not able to get all the calories they need from their motherâs milk. Most puppies are weaned by six weeks.

Joseph Wakshlag, DVM, PhD, is assistant professor of clinical nutrition at Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine. He says that for puppies younger than 8 weeks, you may need to moisten dry food until it feels spongy.

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Stage Two: Add A Tasty Treat Then Step Back

Build off the first step by adding a tasty treat to their bowl, and immediately stepping back to your original distance after placing the treat.

Consistency is key here. Each day, have a goal of moving forward one step. If you are able to stand two feet away after placing a treat for ten meals in a row, your dog is ready to move on to the next step.

When To Talk To Your Veterinarian

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If your dog is displaying any of the above behaviors, its important to talk to your veterinarian. They will be able to rule out any medical conditions that may be causing the behavior and help you develop a plan to address it. Remember, food-dropping habits are often normal dog behaviors that can be addressed with patience and training.

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How Often Can You Give A Dog Benadryl

Always talk to your vet before introducing your dog to new medication. The amount of Benadryl you give your dog depends on your dogs weight and health status.

Call your vet or poison control immediately if you think your dog got into Benadryl while you werent around. Having a pet emergency preparedness plan in place in case this ever happens can be helpful, too. Some quick steps to get you started are:

  • Write down the phone numbers for poison control, local 24-hour emergency pet hospitals and animal ambulances in your area.
  • Put together a pet emergency kit including latex gloves, an information card with your vets address and phone number and towels.
  • Practice for emergencies by familiarizing your pet with riding in the car.

How To Choose The Best Adult Dog Food

You should choose an adult dog food formula from a dog food company that has undergone AAFCO feeding trials. This means that the specific formulation of the diet has been fed to dogs to make sure there are no deficiencies. As surprising as it may seem, many dog food companies make their food based on a recipe and never feed it to actual dogs before sending it into the stores. You want to choose a pet food company that invests in scientific research and consults with veterinary nutritionists to provide a dog food that is specially balanced for the pets lifestage.

You will also want to pay close attention to the AAFCO statement on the adult dog food formula. If the food is labeled as an All Life Stage food, the formula may have more fat and phosphorus than your adult dog needs. Discuss with your veterinarian what is best for your dogs specific needs.

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Can A Puppy Eat Adult Dog Food

Adult dog food for puppies you might be thinking that like an all life stage formula, you can just feed larger quantities of adult food to your puppy. Problem solved, right?

Not quite. The little differences in dietary needs, like vitamins and minerals, are specifically measured in an all life stage food to meet a puppys needs. When feeding an adult food, the nutrients arent properly balanced for a puppy therefore you might be able to feed enough to meet some of their needs, but could be feeding too much of another.

This is why we recommend sticking to either a puppy specific diet or an all life stage formula for your young dogs.

How Long To Feed Puppy Food

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Puppies need a complete and balanced puppy food until they reach maturity. Although dogs who are one year or older are often considered adults, this isnt always the case.

For dogs, adulthood depends more on breed size than their age. Because large and giant breeds take longer to mature, they need to eat puppy food longer than small- or medium-sized breeds.

Heres how long to feed puppy food based on breed sizes:

  • Toy and Small Breed Dogs: Many toy and small breed dogs weigh less than 20 pounds at maturity and reach this size between 9 and 10 months of age.
  • Medium Dog Breeds: Medium-sized dogs weigh between 21 and 50 pounds at maturity. They tend to reach maturity around 12 months of age.
  • Large & Giant Breeds: Large breeds and giant breeds weigh between 50 and 100 pounds, respectively, and can take 18 months to 2 full years to reach maturity. They need to eat puppy food longer than small- and medium-sized breeds.

If you have a mixed breed dog or arent sure how big your dog will be at maturity, its best to consult with your veterinarian. They can tell you when to switch to an adult dog food and help make it a successful transition.

As puppies get older and reach maturity, it is important to monitor their food consumption. Leftovers in a bowl could signal that your puppy is getting full and needs less calories throughout the day. Start by offering less food per feeding and continue to monitor his body condition, says Purina Nutritionist Karina Carbo-Johnson, MS.

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Speak To Your Vet For Advice

Does choosing food sound a bit complicated? Dont worry its normal to feel overwhelmed at first. Its a good idea to speak to your vet or a dog nutritionist, but it will all get easier once youve chosen a brand that you want to stick with. Dont forget that you can always change to something else if your dog isnt thriving!

When your puppy is getting its vaccinations and check-ups, its a great time to ask your vet about what age you should switch them over to an adult diet. After all, every dog is an individual. The transition should happen when your particular dog has reached maturity, not just when they reach a general age milestone.

Move On From Puppy Food

Puppy food is very high in calories and nutritional supplements so you want to switch to adult food once your puppy begins to approach maturity. There is no set age when the switch should be made because it will vary with the breed and individual dog.

In general, the smaller the dog the faster they reach maturity. Small breeds up to 30 pounds mature around ten to twelve months of age although some toy breeds reach maturity even sooner. Medium breed dogs up to 80 pounds will reach maturity between twelve to sixteen months and I believe your puppy may fall into this category. It really depends how much Great Pyrenees she has in her. Large breed dogs weighing more than 80 pounds can take up to two years to reach maturity.

When making the switch to adult food, do it slowly over the course of one to two weeks by gradually mixing in increasing amounts of the adult food with decreasing amounts of her puppy food to minimize gastric upset.

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Dog Benadryl Dosage Chart

Talk to your veterinarian about determining the right amount of Benadryl for your dog. High doses of Benadryl can cause dry mouth, difficulty urinating and constipation. If you think your dog is overdosing on Benadryl, contact poison control or get to your emergency animal clinic as soon as possible. These are the key signs that your dog had too much Benadryl:

  • Sedation and depression

Puppy Feeding Schedule: Everything You Need To Know


If youre bringing home a new puppy, get ready for lots of fun, affectionand food. Puppies grow fast, and they need steady, balanced nutrition to keep them active and healthy. But how often should you feed a puppy, and whats the best kind of puppy food?

Dont worry, weve got info to help you feed your puppy the right stuff at the right time throughout their development.

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Why Adult Dog Food Is Important

Puppy food is nutrient rich and high in calories to support your puppys growth, development and high energy levels.

Continuing to feed puppy food past the point of maturity could cause him to become overweight, which can lead to other health problems.

Choose a complete and balanced adult dog food formula once your puppy reaches maturity to help him maintain his ideal body condition.

Video Answer: When Should Puppies Start Eating Food

Chihuahua puppies should begin eating solid puppy food around three to four weeks of age to supplement their mother’s milk.

Puppies under three months of age or that weigh less than 2 pounds can have constant access to puppy food or be fed at least three to four times per day until the dog is six months old.

Medium-breed dogs normally mature at around 12 to 14 months of age.

Large-breed dogs might not be ready to switch to an adult food until they are between 12 and 24 months old.

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Stop Feeding Puppy Food


At what age is it appropriate to stop feeding my dog puppy food and do I need to phase it out gradually?


In general most, most dogs mature into adults at about one year of age. Large and giant breeds puppies initially grow more slowly and are considered adults by 18-24 months of age. Wean your puppy gradually over a period of two to three weeks onto her new diet. Dogs of all ages need a balanced, high quality, natural diet that agrees with them no matter how old they are.

Instead of focusing on a puppy, adult, or senior diet as dictated by the pet food industry, I recommend feeding your dogs a high-quality, balanced and natural, organic or homemade dietregardless of age. Provide them with the extra nutrients they need in the form of a good vitamin-mineral supplement, which offers longevity and wellness benefits for your dog that last a lifetime.

How Do I Know If Im Feeding My Puppy Enough

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Your puppy should be eating enough to grow and gain weight at a steady, healthy rate. Puppies that grow too quickly or become overweight are more prone to develop orthopedic problems, so you do not want to overfeed your puppy. Ideally, your puppy should maintain a healthy lean body weight.

To determine whether you are feeding your puppy enough, ask your veterinarian to evaluate your puppys Body Condition Score, or learn how to evaluate the Body Condition Score at home . If your puppys Body Condition Score is too low, you may need to increase the amount of food you are feeding your puppy. If the Body Condition Score is too high, your puppy is overweight and you will need to decrease the amount of food you are feeding to reach an ideal score.

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How Often To Feed Your Pup

Puppies should be fed three to four times a day therefore if you are currently feeding ¾ a cup of puppy food twice a day you should consider spacing it out by feeding ½ cup three times a day.

Smaller meals are easier to digest for the puppy and energy levels dont peak and fall so much with frequent meals. At around six months you may start feeding twice a day for convenience but because your dog is a mixed large breed dog I would recommend sticking with a 3-4 times a day feeding schedule if possible to minimize the risk of gastric dilatation volvulus.

  • One 34 lb. Bag – Purina Pro Plan Large Breed Dry Puppy Food, Chicken and Rice Formula
  • Formulated to support an appropriate growth rate for large breed puppies
  • Glucosamine supports developing joints and cartilage

Transition Time: When To Switch Puppies To Adult Dog Food

Puppy food is specifically formulated to support the rapid growth and high energy needs of a puppy in his first year. However, your little furry friend isnt going to be a puppy forever.

At some point, every puppy needs to make the switch from puppy food to adult dog food. Adult food is designed to help maintain your dogs good health through his prime, but it can be tricky to figure out exactly when your precious puppy is ready for some big boy food. To help, weve put together some tips on when and how to switch your dog to adult food.

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How Old Is Old

To call a dog “old,” one mustn’t consider chronological age, but rather physiological condition. Aging begins when the body’s systems start to slow down when cells deteriorate faster than the body can repair them. Though the process is different for every animal , dogs are generally considered seniors beginning at around 7 years . If you feed your dog a diet designed to address the nutritional needs of his age, you can best maintain your dog’s overall health and well-being. As your dog ages, detecting and addressing signs of wear and tear or disease early might help your dog adjust more readily to his condition.

How your dog ages has much to do with genetics and environment, but nutrition plays an equally important role. The quality of the food and its ability to maintain and nourish your dog’s cells can slow or delay the effects of aging and help promote a long, healthy life. As your dog ages and his systems become less efficient, he relies increasingly on the food you provide to make up for his body’s shortfalls. According to Michael Hayek, PhD, a research nutritionist at The IAMS Company who specializes in geriatric nutrition, “Aging dogs need the same nutrients as younger dogs however, the quantity or the way the nutrients are provided may change.”

Fructooligosaccharides are a unique fiber source. FOS is a moderately fermentable fiber which can help maintain a healthy intestinal environment.

Can Puppies Eat Adult Dog Food

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Puppies and adult dogs have different nutrient needs. To help puppies grow into adult dogs, they require more protein, micronutrients, and carbs. Puppies also require a high amount of calories to help them grow, so its essential to purchase a high-quality food brand for your puppy.

A puppys mouth is smaller than an adult dogs mouth, which helps explain why their food is not as big as adult kibble. Feeding puppies adult dog food can be dangerous because the kibble is larger and the texture is harder to chew. Giving a puppy adult dog food, it can cause damage to their teeth, jaws, and overall health.

If youre looking for high-quality food for your little friend, perhaps you could try The Farmers Dog, one of our top picks for fresh dog food. Its a healthy solution for dogs of all ages.

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Grated Fruits And Vegetables

You can add certain fruit and veggies to your dogs food to help get rid of worms. Theyll make your dogs digestive tract less welcoming. Good choices include carrots, cucumber, watercress, greens, squash, and fennel. Pineapple is also a good choice. Its full of bromelain, an enzyme that digests proteins. It can also boost your dogs immune system to help him fight off the worms. Another enzyme called papain, in papaya, can also help combat worms.

Pomegranate is useful for fighting off tapeworms. Compounds in pomegranate help expel worms from the digestive tract.

Add at least 1 tsp of any of these fruits and veggies per 10 lbs of body weight to your dogs meals twice a day. Veggies in your dogs diet can also provide a much-needed source of fiber.

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Do All Puppies Have Worms

Intestinal parasites are very common in puppies. Symptoms of intestinal parasites include poor overall condition, chronic soft or bloody stools, loss of appetite, a pot-bellied appearance, a dull, dry haircoat, and weight loss. Some parasites are transmitted from the mother to her offspring either in utero or in the milk and others are carried by fleas or other insects. Some are transmitted through the stool of an infected dog. Very few of these parasites are visible in the stool, so their eggs must be detected by the veterinarian with a microscope.

Intestinal parasites are very common in puppies.

A microscopic examination of the feces will reveal the eggs of most of these parasites. Generally this test should be performed at the time of the first vaccinations. However, it may be performed as early as two to three weeks of age if an intestinal parasite problem is suspected. The Companion Animal Parasite council recommends deworming puppies for roundworms and hookworms every two weeks starting at two weeks of age. Other treatment may be needed based on the results of a fecal examination. Your veterinarian should be consulted for specific recommendations for your puppies. You should not administer any over-the-counter deworming compounds without first consulting your veterinary hospital.

Contributors: Krista Williams, BSc, DVM Ernest Ward, DVM

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