Dog Food

Having a puppy is one of the best feelings in the world. And taking care of them can be burdensome, but it’s worth it. Speaking of care, it is important to talk about a puppy’s nutritional needs. As most of you know, a puppy’s nutritional needs are way different than adult dogs. But as puppies grow older, you will need to make that change from puppy food to adult dog food. But how and when to do it? Well, the answer isn’t that straightforward. Yes, age plays a key role in this but there is more to it than just that. Hence, read on as we discuss more on this.

The Difference Between Puppy Food And Adult Dog Food

There is a vast difference when it comes to puppy food and adult dog food. Puppies need more nutrients, proteins, and calories in order to function well. They utilize more energy and thus, they need richer foods. Also, puppy foods have higher concentrations of calcium, sodium, and potassium in them than adult dog food. They are also enriched with different enzymes that are essential for growth in young puppies. However, as puppies mature and grow, their energy levels drop down by a considerable rate. And they no longer need diets that are rich in protein, calcium, etc. At this point, feeding them adult dog food is the better bet. That’s because feeding them puppy food can lead to obesity or other health issues. Moreover, it can contribute to hip or elbow dysplasia or other deformations. Hence, it is imperative to recognize when your pupper is ready for the change in diet.

When To Make The Switch From Puppy Food To Adult Dog Food

Unfortunately, there isn’t one particular time to make the switch from puppy food to adult dog food. But the good news is, you can hunt for clues to make those changes. A general rule regarding this says that when puppies reach about 75 to 85% of their adult size, their growth rate slows down considerably. The age at which this happens will obviously depend on the breed and predicted size of your buddy.

For instance;

Toy or tiny breeds (less than 4.5 kgs to 5.5 kgs when grown) – 6 to 7 months of age.

Small breeds (about 9 kgs to 11 kgs adult weight) – 9 to 11 months of age.

Medium breeds (about 11 kgs to 22 kgs adult weight) – 12 to 14 months of age.

Large breeds (about 22 kgs to 34 kgs adult weight) – 15 to 18 months of age.

Giant breeds (over 36 kgs when grown) – 18 to 24 months of age.

The above ages are mere guidelines for understanding. However, you will also need to take into account your dog’s activity as well while making the switch. Dogs that are generally more active and energetic will require more energy from puppy food. While dogs that are less active need to be fed adult dog food to meet their requirements. Moreover, your canine buddy will give your clues when he is not happy with puppy food. And when they start eating less or refuses to eat puppy food, you know it’s time for that all-important switch.

How To Make The Switch To Adult Dog Food?

So now you’ve figured that your buddy needs a change in their diet. But how do you go about it? Well, it is highly recommended to make the transition process slow and steady. Making the switch quickly can lead to digestive problems like vomiting and diarrhea. And when you make that switch gradually, it can help your dog ease into its new diet. So when the time is right for the switch, begin by offering your canine 75% puppy food and 25% adult dog food. Give this formulation for a few days, then change the ratio to 50/50. Later, feed your buddy 25% puppy food and 75% adult food. Thereafter, after a few days, make it 100% adult dog food. Ideally, the transition from puppy food to adult dog food should not be more than 7 to 14 days.

You may also be interested in reading: 4 Benefits Of Giving Proper Nutrition To Your Dog