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The nutritional requirements of dogs vary greatly to those of humans. The best diets take these requirements into account and are tailored to the breed, size, age and activity level of your dog.
Feeding your dog
When you pick up your new puppy you should ask the breeder what food your puppy has been fed on you should feed that food and if you want to change it, introduce the new diet over 7 days by mixing it with the food your puppy has been fed. A sudden change of food will cause an upset stomach. Remember you puppy’s digestive system is still developing.
Divide the daily amount (the packaging will say how much to feed) into 3-4 meals and feed your puppy at regular intervals.
Dry food does meet all the nutritional requirements and if the dry food is for puppies and for the correct size of your dog, your puppy should be able to eat the kibble without any problem. You can add warm water to soften the kibble and gradually reduce the amount of water added over a couple of weeks until your puppy will eat the dry kibble.
If you wish to feed wet puppy meat a good quality wet diet should be selected.
Your puppy should be fed on a puppy diet from 2 months of age to 6-9 months of age (depending on the size/ breed of you dog). They should then move on to a junior lifestage diet.
At 6-9 months of age you should reduce the amount of meals to 2-3 meals daily. The daily amount given on the packaging will also alter month by month.
At 10-18 months (depending on size/breed of your dog) your dog should be moved onto the adult lifestage diet and the daily allowance may alter again.
If and when your dog is neutered, his/her energy balance alters which can lead to weight gain. Reducing the energy level in the diet will help by reducing the quantity fed daily by 10-20% or switching to a ‘neutered’ diet. A controlled diet and plenty of exercise will prevent weight gain.
At 5-8 years old (depending on size/breed) your dog should be moved onto a senior diet as they have reduced levels of phosphorus and sodium to maintain kidney and heart health and good quality protein to maintain muscle mass. A senior diet can help with joint support and weight maintenance, as it is tailored to the dietary requirements of older dogs.