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What to feed puppy?

(March 9, 2010)

Puppyhood is a time for rapid growth and development, so it is important you provide your puppy with all the essential nutrients. You must realise that puppies have different nutritional needs from adult dogs. Hence, you must choose foods that provide the appropriate balance of nutrients to your puppy. Puppies get ready for weaning between 6 to 8 weeks and start taking interest in solid foods at around 3 to 4 weeks. However, you shouldn’t switch exclusively to solid foods too soon, as it can harm your puppy’s stomach. It is recommended to seek your veterinarian’s advice before switching to adult food. Below are a few tips for feeding your puppies to ensure proper development and growth.

•    If your puppy is under six months of age, you should feed it three times a day. As they grow, after 6 months, they may be fed twice daily.

•    The types of commercially produced dog foods are: dry kibble, semi-moist (sealed packages), and moist (canned). You must feed your puppy dry foods that are only 9 to 11 percent water. You can also try mixing three parts of dry food with one part water or puppy replacement milk when the puppy is 3 to 4 weeks old. This will facilitate digestion.

•    Avoid serving canned food that has more calories and is mostly water. Canned food will also not give your puppy the chance to get its teeth clean.

•    Give your puppy with high-quality puppy food that has 25 to 30 percent protein, as this supports healthy tissue and organ development.

•    Provide your puppy with food that has higher levels of essential minerals such as calcium, phosphorous, magnesium, zinc, iron, as well as vitamin D, to help build strong bones and teeth.

•    Avoid giving table scraps to your puppy as they are usually high in calories and can cause diarrhoea or other gastrointestinal problems. Also, they aren’t fortified with the vitamins and minerals that dogs require.

•    Feed your puppy on a set schedule, as this will make housetraining easier and faster.

•    Puppies tend to drink large quantities of water and should not be deprived of it as it keeps its body hydrated. Provide fresh water to your puppy to prevent diseases such as leptospirosis, E. coli, and Cryptosporidium that gets transmitted through contaminated water sources.

•    Avoid over feeding your puppy.  It is advised to check the package of puppy food, to know the portions of servings required. Overfeeding may lead to painful bone problems later because of poor indigestion. Also your puppy may become overweight that again may lead to serious health problems.

•    Add carrots that are good for your puppy’s eye sight and organic yoghurt that is a good source of protein to your puppy’s kibble.

Submitted by A on March 9, 2010 at 10:26


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