Your Puppy’s Diet is Linked to Its Health as an Adult

Once you adopt a puppy, time flies past you, and in about a year, your little one graduates into an adult. However, the larger breeds reach their full emotional and physical development when approaching two years old. Other dogs expect them to mature up and behave like adults in the animal kingdom, becoming intolerant of puppy-like behavior.

Like in many cases, your puppies’ diet plays a significant role in its health as an adult. The diet acts as a foundation of the health of your friend. As a pet owner, the responsibility to feed your pet on the right food solely lies on you. Ensure that they consume safe and healthy options, food and treats.

Your puppy may remain as playful and mischievous as always, but his needs are developing. As a pet parent, you need to make some alterations to help maintain his joy and health.

Feeding Growing Puppies

The little ones are weaned off their mom’s milk at eight weeks. When feeding the growing puppies, remember you are laying a foundation for its health as an adult. You need proper nutrition for:

Healthy growth: Healthy growth in dogs is gradual, neither too slow nor too rapid. Though the growth rate varies by breed, a puppy should have doubled the birth weight when it hits one week. This follows a consistent 5-10% increase daily. Double your pup’s weight at week six and double it again to get the estimated value expected for your adult dog in tiny breeds.

Minimize obesity: Studies show that over 50 percent of dogs in America are obese, and the trend is always growing. Obesity in pets comes with many other problems like metabolic abnormalities, endocrinopathies, cardiovascular diseases, and functional alterations. Inculcating a healthy diet in puppies saves your pet from this common problem as an adult.

Optimize immune functions: Like humans, dogs’ health is mostly as a result of what they eat. The quality of your pets’ food will affect the immunity functions and jeopardize their ability to fight ailments and diseases as adults.

Avoid orthopedic diseases: Conditions like cruciate ligament raptures and dysplasia may cost you substantially to treat and can cause your immense pet pain. Male dogs are at a higher risk of developing orthopedic diseases. Nutritional factors that contribute to these conditions include overfeeding high energy foods to dogs and excessive calcium intake. Puppies that feed on excessive minerals at a tender age may suffer from orthopedic conditions as adults, hence the need to balance nutrients provided to the little dogs.

Nutritional Requirement for Growing Puppies

Choose a diet for your puppy keenly, as this is important for the growth and quality of life. See below four essential nutrients your puppy needs.

Protein: Puppies need the highest level of proteins immediately after weaning, but the amount decreases after that. For dry foods, the recommended protein range is 22-32 percent for healthy puppy growth. Do not exceed these levels for optimal growth into adult dogs.

Although the protein levels in adult food may be adequate for the growing pups, energy content and other nutrients are not. Therefore, do not feed puppies on adult foods.

Fats: Fat, a crucial source of amino acids, carries fat-soluble vitamins as it is a concentrated source of energy. When consumed in excess, fats can lead to obesity and orthopedic diseases. Fat content for puppies should be between 10-25 percent on dry foods. When consumed in moderation, fats are crucial in the supply of fatty acids, essential building blocks for maintaining healthy normal cells.

Calcium: The levels of calcium intake recommended in small to medium breeds ranges from 0.7-1.7 percent. Calcium content for giant and large breed puppies are more stringent today. Hence it is crucial to feed your puppy a diet specific to meet nutritional levels as recommended by AAFCO.

Digestible carbohydrates: Experts recommend about 20percent of carbohydrates on dry food. In the form of whole grains, carbohydrates furnish the body with minerals, fiber, and iron. Once broken down, it is converted to glucose, which becomes a source of energy.

Minerals: Though they make up less than 1 percent of the weight of a dog, minerals are essential for many crucial functions like physical growth, healthy teeth, and strong bones.

Avoid additional mineral supplements and vitamins when feeding the dogs. Choose treats with nutritional value and ensure that they are well-balanced. Limit the treats to less than 10percent of the total amount provided.

The Right Puppy Food

Puppy food is formulated with the end goal in mind – healthy adult dogs. Puppies need a double amount of calories per pound of the weight as adults of the same breed. Feed your little pet scientifically formulated and nutritional puppy food when the mother’s milk becomes insufficient, which is from 4 weeks.

For best results, feed the puppies 2-3 times daily. Puppies that weigh less than ten pounds need to eat three times a day. Scheduling feed times for your pets as a routine also helps with house training.

Some breeds have a high appetite and will eat at every opportunity, hence best to monitor weight gain. Talk to your vet often to advise on the growth rate. Avoid overfeeding the puppy to escalate the growth as the size of an adult dog is determined genetically.


Your puppy’s diet directly affects the quality of life that it will live as an adult dog. Like any foundation, it is crucial to invest in your pets’ diet to ensure that your canine will live a long and healthy life. While feeding your puppy right may seem expensive and tempt you to take shortcuts that compromise the pet’s health, do not. Keep to the nutritional guides and ensure a balanced diet.

Buying commercial food from reputable stores like Tail Bangers comes with multiple benefits. The experts ensure that the feeds meet all your dog’s nutritional needs, is safe and pocket friendly. It is also convenient as you will need very minimal preparation time.


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