A dog’s lifespan is divided into three stages: puppyhood, maturity, and senior years. Your dog’s food requirements change as it ages to meet its changing demands. Their metabolism may also change as they age. This is why it’s critical to understand when it’s ideal for swapping brands and varieties of kibbles to fit your dog’s health and feeding habits.
Puppy food is intended to be high in calories and critical nutrients to help pups grow their skeletal system and improve their bodies. Conversely, many older dogs require particular quantities of calories, minerals, and protein to maintain their power while maintaining a healthy weight.
Because of the differences in nutrient needs, the dog parent should feed dogs the proper food for their age. However, before introducing your pet to a new diet, you should consult vets at Virginia Beach animal hospital.
Consider the following advice for when and how to transition your dog’s diet from puppy chow to adult dog food:
Consider the Age and type of the dog.
Dogs aged six to twelve months are often ready to shift to adult dog chow. Some of these indicators include food scraps after each meal, snack, or skipped meal, indicating that the dog may have previously felt satisfied with less puppy food due to its high-calorie content.
Aside from these indicators, you should also regard your dog’s breed size while transitioning to adult dog food.
Smaller breed dogs develop faster, with several reaching maturity between the ages of 7 and 9 months. Moderate-sized dog breeds mature after 12 to 16 months of age. Finally, huge dog breeds might take up to two years to mature.
To avoid overeating and nutrient deficiencies, visit your veterinarian about the finest dog food for your beloved buddy. This step is critical to prevent feeding puppy food to developed dogs, which can lead to bone weakening, diarrhea, and undesired excess weight in the long term.
Food quantities and meal times should be adjusted.
Puppies require more nutrients to support their growth and maturation; thus, they are frequently given multiple little meals throughout the day.
Puppies below four months old, for example, may consume regular food four to five times a day. Feedings are often given between nursing sessions to aid in the adjustment to eating and weaning from milk. They can have three meals or snacks every day after four months. To keep the balance, snacks should be restricted to 10% of their regular nutritional intake.
A dog’s daily calorie need is considered to decrease as it develops steadily. As a result, switching to adult dog food that meets their needs is critical. In addition, food consumption should be progressively reduced to two daily feedings to promote good weight control and digestion. To achieve this efficiently, you must adhere to strict feeding times. This will discourage grazing and promote healthy feeding habits such as eating and chewing slowly.
Regarding quantities, each food item should be weighed and cooked precisely as directed on the package. Besides that, the dog’s body weight and the vet’s suggestions depending on its health state must be considered. Finally, snacks should be restricted to one to two daily portions to avoid overeating.
Examine Your Dog’s Feeding Habits
Monitoring your dog’s feeding behavior is another approach to determine whether it is suitable for adult food. The amount of food it intakes during every meal and any significant variations in its appetite are strong indicators that it’s ready for a diet shift. If the dog is appropriate for a lighter diet suited for adults, more infant food will remain after each eating period. Furthermore, your dog may become choosy or have a smaller appetite than normal. Because of the nutrient-dense pup chow, some dogs may miss meals, become lethargic, or experience gastrointestinal issues. If this occurs, visit your veterinarian at Virginia Beach vet hospital promptly and get treatment. Also, talk to your doctor about how you can assist your dog in the transition to an adult diet and feeding routines.