Feeding Prepared Dog Food and Puppy Food
By Sandra Dinkins-Wilson
If you have decided that you will feed your dog or puppy prepared dog food or prepared puppy food, then your next decision is what type of food should you be feeding your puppy? You will need to do some research on the prepared puppy foods available if you decide not to pursue feeding puppy a raw food meal.
Become a label reader. The higher priced puppy foods will usually come from a company that is or has conducted extensive research on providing the best nutritional food to your puppy. So a rule of thumb is that the inexpensive stuff is not going to be as good as the more expensive puppy foods.
Do not buy any puppy food or dog food that lists a starch or sugar in the first four ingredients. You want a premium puppy food that lists a protein source as one of the first two ingredients. (As a note based on recent studies into human nutrition, do not have that source be soy-based.)
Providing carbohydrates in the form of green vegetables when puppy feeding is quite all right. Even raw foods advocates add some non-starchy vegetables to the dog food they mix. So this is an ingredient you may expect to find on some puppy food labels. However, animal nutritionists have found dogs derive no nutrtional value from carbs such as sugar and starches even if many dogs foods are 50% or better carbohydrates. Carbs are less expensive than protein sources, generally, and are used as fillers in dog good.
As canned puppy and dog food can be as much as 75% water, we are mostly discussing dry puppy food mixes. Canned preparations are not cheap so you are paying a lot for water. Best to use a premium dry puppy food and add to it.
A suggested menu is the dry puppy food with a little canned dog food, which is mostly meat, and moistened with a little warm water. Usually, canned puppy food will have enough fat for the puppy as well. A couple times a week, you might replace the meat with some cottage cheese or a cooked egg. Some trainers who have raised dogs for a very long time even suggest adding a tablespoon of yogurt with live culture a couple times a week.
Less than six months, feed three times a day when puppy feeding and then go down to two times a day. Give your puppy about 15 minutes to eat his food and then remove and refrigerate it. At the next feeding warm it up before feeding puppy. The 15 minutes goes to your puppy training efforts as you can read in other articles.
As your puppy develops over the next few months up to his first birthday when he should start on dog food as appropriate for him, keep an eye on him. Be aware of over feeding your puppy and beware of him growing too fast. It is possible for a puppy to be growing too fast and this can impact his health, so double check his growth with your veterinarian.
Copyright 2005, Sandra Dinkins-Wilson
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