Generally, puppy food is specially formulated to help the growth and nourishment of a puppy. It is filled with higher amount of protein, vitamins, minerals and fats as compared to adult food of the same brand. Puppies tend to be more hyperactive than adult dogs, which is why they require a lot more energy!
Buying food for your puppy can be stressful especially if you are a first-time dog owner. There must be tons of question running through your mind as you look at all the brands out there.
Should you go for the cheapest? How much to feed your puppy? Which brand should you go for? When should you stop feeding puppy food?
Not to worry, PerroPet got you covered in this article. We will be sharing a guide in choosing the right food for your puppy!
Know Your Puppy
Before you start researching on food, visit the vet for a check up. You need to know the needs of your puppy in order to cater the right food!
You may check with your vet if your puppy has any allergies to take note of. This helps to prevent any allergic reaction to food in the future. If your puppy is adopted, you may also check with the former owner. If not, you can always do a trial and error with food.
Age of Puppy
It is important to take note of the age of your puppy! Once they have reached the adult stage, you should start feeding them with adult dog food instead. Different stages of live require specific nutritional needs intake.
For small breeds, you can start feeding adult food when they are around 9 to 12 months. Larger breeds tend to take longer (19-24 months) before switching. If you are unsure, consult your vet or any friendly neighbourhood salesperson!
Activeness of Puppy
Puppies that are more active require higher amount of protein. If your puppy runs around a lot and loves to play, consider puppy food with higher meat content and protein to supply them with sufficient energy to play and grow.
One factor to take into consideration is the kind of diet your puppy needs.
Small and toy breeds usually need higher protein thanks to their high metabolism rate. Generally, all puppy food will satisfy their protein requirement.
Medium breeds are in-between small and large breeds, so higher protein food is necessary. However, certain breeds have a higher chance of getting orthopaedic issues such as large breeds. It will be best to consult your vet for advice on their dietary needs.
Large breed puppies require slow, steady growth which helps to prevent orthopaedic issues when they reach adulthood. Their diet should contain lesser protein, fat and calorie. As most puppy foods have high protein and fats, it is essential to buy puppy food, which are specifically for large breeds.
Choosing the Right Food for your Puppy
After knowing what your puppy needs, you can start looking for the right food. At this point of time, loads of research and homework are to be done. There are many brands to choose from, but not all will suit your puppy. In order to get the best food for your dog, here are some factors to look at!
1. Ingredient List
Economical food is not as great as higher grade puppy food. Just take a look at their ingredients and you will know why!. Economical puppy food does not contain high-quality ingredients that help in digestion.
It is best to check the first 5 ingredients in the puppy food. High quality food will contain meat as their first few ingredients. If the food has ingredients such as rice or sweet potatoes, the meat content for that food is not high. Manufacturers use such ingredients to replace meat in the food.
You should check their protein level as well to ensure its suitability for your dog! Feeding your puppy food with a protein level too high for him/her to digest will cause loose stools. When that happens, it is advised that you switch to a brand of food that has lower levels of protein.
2. Special Needs
Once you know the needs of your puppy, you can source for puppy food specially catered for your puppy. If your puppy is very active, higher protein puppy food will promote growth. For large breeds, it is recommended to look for large breed specific puppy food.
3. Brand Recalls
Although there is nothing to worry about, it is a good thing to check the brand’s reputation. Was there any recall for their dog food in the past? Why was it recalled? How long ago was it?
These information will allow you to know the consistent quality of the food and manufacturers.
When choosing the right puppy food, you should seek advices from experienced dog owners. As they have done their research previously, they will have an idea of which food is better. They can give feedbacks on the food they have been feeding their dogs when they were younger.
As we live in a connected world of information, it is easy to get reviews on the internet! Usually, the food are reviewed by real life owners who have already fed their dog. Reading up reviews will give you a rough idea on how the brands are performing, be it good or bad!
After reading this guide, we hope you have gained more knowledge in choosing the right dog food. If you are still unsure, you can contact any salesperson to enquire more regarding puppy food. All puppies are different, therefore it will be good to know if your puppies require any special dietary needs before seeking help. Some basic information you could provide are your puppy’s breed, weight, age, allergies, and special requirements.