Feeding your puppy
If a fluffy bundle of joy has just joined the family, you’ll already have plenty to think about. Training them, getting them used to the outside world, and making sure they’re vaccinated and healthy are all very important parts of puppy care.
Feeding your puppy is also an important part of taking care of their health and happiness. Once they are old enough to eat solid food – usually when they are six to eight weeks old – it’s time to introduce a diet specially formulated to meet their needs.
What to feed puppies
Specially formulated puppy foods are the ideal diet for the newest member of your family. This is because they are complete and balanced, which means they contain everything your puppy needs to help them grow up healthily. There’s no need for extra supplements or pieces of human food – in fact, these might do more harm than good, no matter how insistently they show you their puppy-dog eyes!
Puppy food is usually higher in calories than adult food, as puppies need a lot of energy for all the growing they have to do. Puppy foods tend to contain extra protein to support the healthy development of their organs, as well as high levels of essential nutrients like magnesium, iron, zinc and vitamin D to help with the development of strong teeth and bones.
Dry puppy food is also usually made in smaller kibble sizes, which makes it easier to chew and swallow. Puppies often love crunching their food up, and will happily eat their meal all in one go.
How much to feed puppies
When you’re feeding a puppy you should always follow the guidelines on the back of the pack, as different foods are likely to vary a little. Any specific advice your vet gives you should also be followed, as every puppy is different. For example, if your puppy is particularly energetic, they may need a little more food than usual. However, in general:
- Puppies who have just started eating solid food will need feeding up to six times a day
- By the time they are four months old, this will probably be four meals a day
- When your puppy is over six months old, they can have two meals a day.
It’s better for younger puppies to eat little and often, as this won’t overwhelm their developing digestion – no matter how enthusiastic they are about finishing their bowl of food!
Most importantly, keep an eye on your puppy’s weight. Your vet will be able to tell you what is ideal, and give you advice on helping your puppy stay at a healthy size.
Other puppy feeding tips
- When they’re old enough, make crunchy or chewy treats part of your puppy’s daily food allowance. These treats can even help their teeth stay clean
- Serve wet puppy food at room temperature so it smells attractive.
- Avoid foods such as raw meat and bones, and make sure your puppy never eats chocolate, onions, grapes, or raisins, as these are all toxic to dogs.
- If possible, feed your puppy the same food as they did before you brought them home. This will help minimise any possible upset stomach.
- If you do change food, it’s best to do so slowly, by starting with the old food and gradually adding the new food over the course of a few days.
- If you’re feeding more than one puppy, consider doing it separately so one puppy doesn’t eat more than the other, and there’s no competition.
Feeding puppies with Bakers®
Bakers® dry puppy food is made with a mixture of tender* meaty chunks and crunchy kibble. Choose from either chicken or beef for a delicious meal every time. Both recipes are complete and balanced, and they contain all the nutrients your puppy needs for their health. Vitamin D and minerals help support their teeth and bones, iron supports healthy blood, quality protein helps support the growth and development of healthy muscles, and wholegrains – a source of carbohydrate – are included to help fuel their energetic lifestyle. *softness varies with time
*softness varies with time
With the right food, your beautiful puppy will soon grow into a healthy, happy adult dog. All they need now is plenty of fun exercise and, of course, lots of attention from you.