If you’ll soon be bringing home your new puppy, or you’ve recently decided you’d like to extend your family by four small paws, congratulations!
You’ll probably be in the middle of researching the many different things you need to know and buy, and one of the biggest things you’ll be wondering is what to feed your puppy.
With so many different options available, check out our advice below for what you need to look for:
When can puppies be fed solid food?
Once puppies begin to wean from their mothers milk they are able to start moving onto solid food, this is done gradually. When you pick up your puppy at 8 weeks old, they will have already been weaned onto solid food ready to go to their new home.
What food is best for puppies?
When looking for food for puppies, make sure you look for something that is suitable for puppies.
Some companies make puppy specific food, however at Wilsons, all our food is suitable for dogs of all ages and sizes.
Wilsons Pet Food's Premium Cold Pressed is perfect for puppies as it's designed to promote good intestinal health with natural antioxidants, and supports strong, healthy bones, eyes, skin and coat. As we press our ingredients at a low temperature, our food retains it's essential nutrients which are passed onto your pup and it also breaks down quicker in your puppy's tum, preventing bloating.
While our whole range caters for any age, we always recommend our Clear Water Salmon as it has the highest calcium to phosphorus levels for bone growth.
Salmon is a high-quality protein, crammed with omega-3 fatty acids which provides various health benefits for dogs and puppies including brain health and function, boosting the immune system, reduction in inflammation of the joints, alleviation of symptoms of arthritis and aids joint mobility. It also helps to maintain a healthy skin and coat and a reduction in skin irritations and allergies.
Can puppies eat raw food?
Yes, puppies are able to eat raw food. When choosing the best raw food for them, you do need to be aware of the contents of the food. If it contains bone make sure you know what kind of consistency the food is, young or small breed puppies can choke on large bits of bone so it can be best to wait until they are a little older/bigger before feeding these.
Wilsons Raw Frozen is minced - a similar consistency to burgers or meatballs. It contains meat, offal and bone, and we also have a premium range which includes vegetables for added nutrition.
As our raw food contains bone, we recommend not giving to small puppies or small breed puppies to avoid choking on larger pieces of bone.
As with all raw food, ensure you treat it as you would when using raw meat and clean up bowls and utensils after use.
Should I continue feeding what the breeder/rescue centre feed my puppy?
It's always best to research dog food to make sure it's right for you and your puppy, but as long as it gives your puppy the nutrition they need to grow up strong and healthy it's fine to continue feeding.
If you decide you want to move them to a new food, always ensure you transfer them over gradually to reduce the risk of upsetting their stomach. We recommend you switch out a small amount of your old food for your new food and gradually increase over a period of around 10 days.
How often and how much should I feed my puppy?
The amount of food you need to feed your puppy will depend on their weight and expected adult size. Always make sure you read the feeding guide regularly so you can adjust as they get older and weigh out their meals so you can ensure they are fed the right amount.
You will begin to feed your puppy little and often, using rations from their recommended daily amount. The PFMA recommends that at first, feed your puppy four meals a day until they reach around 4 months old, then reduce down to three meals per day until they reach around 6 months then finally reduce down to twice a day which they will continue on for the rest of their lives.
Is there anything else I should know about feeding my puppy?
If you are feeding wet or raw food, make sure you throw away any uneaten food in the bowl after half an hour, and as with any raw food make sure you clean any utensils and their bowls after use.
Always ensure there is fresh, clean water available for your dog throughout the day.