How Often Should You Feed A Puppy?


It is truly a very precious moment when you decide to bring a new 4-legged cute pet to your house. I completely understand that trepidation and excitement, which comes with it. Now, it is equally important to take care of your pup all the time. As a pet owner, it is your responsibility to keep it clean and feed with right nutrition. And if you are new to all this, you might often wonder how often should you feed a puppy. To help you know better, here is something important for you to read.

How Often Do You Feed A Puppy?

How Often Should You Feed A Puppy

Here is a quick answer to the question – how often to feed a puppy.

Usually, puppies eat plenty of food. Right from its birth to 6 months, puppies require eating 2 or 4 times in order support its overall development. Puppies should usually be fed 3 to 4 times a day. If you’re at present feeding ¾-cup of food two times in a day, try spacing it by feeding ½-cup 3 times per day. Since they are just little, experts suggest offering smaller meals so that it becomes easier for them to digest. This will avoid energy levels to peak & fall with repeated meals. After 6 months, 2 times per day feedings are good. And for any reasons, if you cannot feed your puppy 3 times per day, do not worry because they have the ability to adapt themselves.

I hope you now know how often should you feed a puppy. This is not the end of this article though. There are still few things that are important for me to explain here.

As said earlier, puppies require taking plenty of calories for a faster growth. In the beginning, it means around two times as many per pound as adult dogs eat (of same breed). Puppies rapidly grow up in their initial 5 months. Pay attention to the food labels. This will help you feed it right. On the other hand, don’t feed your puppy in excess. You can find this by observing them keenly.

You must be able to feel their ribs and not see. This is a clear sign that you are feeding it with right proportion. Moreover, your pup should have visible waist. This is very true for puppies of all breeds – big / small. Generally, you need to follow the guidelines given at the back of dog food’s bag. Adjust up / down based on your pup’s appetite & body condition.

How To Know If Your Pup Is Consuming The Correct Amount?

Veterinarians normally evaluate dogs by using the so-called “body conditioning” score. This ranges from 1 (for emaciated) – 5 (for obese). It is normal for young pups to have baby fat, however, after their initial 8 – 10 weeks, “pups must be a two”. Learn to judge your puppy at home. With a score of 2, it is supposed to be relatively thin. This is exactly when a pup’s ribs are clearly seen. In fact, one can clearly see its backbones. On the other hand, you shouldn’t feel fat over its ribs. By 5 months, your puppy should appear lean.

A Perfect Daily Routine For Your Puppy

Time What To Do?
6.30 AM Quick exercise
7.00 AM Outdoor walking, morning meal, playtime & back to its crate
10.00 AM A small walk, bonding time with the owner & back to its crate
12.00 PM Healthy midday meal
1.00 PM A small walk, playtime & back to its crate
5.00 PM Outdoor walk, evening meal and playtime
7.00 PM Small walk, playtime & back to its crate

When Should Your Puppy Begin Consuming Solid Foods?

Puppies must get solid foods when they are around 4 weeks or when they aren’t getting all the necessary calories they require from their mum’s milk. Also, you might require moistening dry foods until it is spongy. Keep in mind, the solid food feeding to your puppy shouldn’t be an overnight attempt. The process has to be gradual. Perhaps, within a 2 to 3 weeks course.

What Foods To Give Your Puppy?

Generally, a pup’s food has to be enriched with proteins, minerals, fats and vitamins. These are very essential for its growth. Let me also tell you that ingredients among brands can differ largely. Commercial puppy foods should meet “Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO)” nutrient standards. It is best to ask a vet about the basic guidelines of what your pup should be fed and what to not. Small dogs mature much faster than bigger ones. Regular food with the label — “for all-life levels” is great too. In the initial 6 months, the nutritional requirements for any pup changes very quickly. So it is wise to ask your vet regarding the recommend diets.

Move From Pup Foods Once It Matures

There is needless to say that puppy’s food come with whole lot of proteins, minerals, calories and other nutritional supplements. Therefore, you have to switch to adult-dog food once it starts approaching maturity. There isn’t any definite age as to when this switch must be made. This timing varies for every dog breed. Basically, smaller the dog breed is, faster it reaches its maturity. While making a switch to adult-dog food, it is important to do it gradually. Perhaps, within 1 to 2 weeks by slowly mixing in rising proportions while decreasing the puppy food.

What Foods To Stay Away From?

Try avoiding foods, which lists meat by-products or corn as its primary ingredient. Usually, meat has to be the first one. And stay away from feeding puppy food for a long time than it is supposed to because this can lead to obesity & other orthopedic problems.

Don’t Allow Your Pet To Get Chubby

Again, this comes to the way you judge your pet. It is vital to judge its body condition so that you can know when and how much food to give. Recommendations on food labels are just guidelines and won’t apply to all dogs. You might require feeding little more / less based on its body condition.