Proper Switching to Adult Food From Puppy Food

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Question:

I am reading conflicting info about when to transfer our pup from puppy food to adult dog food. Our vet says anytime in between 6 and 18 months for our kind of dog (Basset hound). The dog food guide states 12 months, the 30-year pet store owner says 6 months, and our back-up vet says 12 months at the longest. My gut instinct says, because a Basset’s bone structure is not totally established till about 18 months old, keep her on young puppy food up until she’s 18 months, but she’s not interested in her puppy food any longer and as of late goes a number of days at a time without consuming. When she does eat it’s only about a cup and a half. She’s abundant and spirited and drinks a lot of water, so I am not sure what is left other than maybe she is ready for adult dog food?

Answer:

This is one of the most typical concerns that I get from pup owners. There is a lot of clashing information out there that makes it extremely hard for family pet owners to know which guidelines to trust. Making the transition from puppy to adult food at a suitable time is important since there is a significant shift in regards to the caloric needs and nutrition requirements of your pup as she approaches maturity. Young puppy food is extremely high in calories and dietary supplements, so feeding it too long to a mature dog can lead to weight problems and orthopedic problems.

In basic, you wish to make the change to adult food when your young puppy is approaching her adult height. The issue is that various breeds mature at different rates due to the large range of variation in between types. A rule of thumb to bear in mind is that smaller breeds have the tendency to develop faster than big breeds. Small breed dogs as much as 30 pounds mature around 10 to 12 months of age remembering that some toy breeds can grow even previously. Medium type dogs as much as 80 pounds mature between 12 to 16 months and your Basset hound falls in this classification. Large and huge breed dogs weighing more than 80 pounds can use up to two years to reach full maturity.

These are guidelines only and as you might have noticed they can vary from other standards out there. So which guideline is the best to follow? Should you follow the vet’s, the pet shopkeeper, or the dog food company’s? The best standard to follow is your puppy’s! In your case, she is currently rejecting the puppy food and showing a preference for the adult food. The puppy food likely has a lot of calories for her so she feels less of a have to eat when she is on the pup food. You did not specify her age however as long as you are within the general standards it is safe to make the transition to adult food.

One last suggestion for young puppy owners about altering food is to do it slowly. Mix in increasing amounts of the adult food with the young puppy food over the course of a week while decreasing the quantity of puppy food. By the end of the week you must just be feeding the adult food. Making the modification gradual makes it less most likely that your dog will experience loose stools and indigestions.

Also read: How to Switch or Transition Dog Food

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