Transitioning adorable puppies from mommy’s milk to solid food is a significant step in their physical development and emotional growth. The gradual switching from mother’s milk to solid food is called the “weaning process.” It is a natural process that enables your sweethearts to become sovereign feeders and decreases feeding demands on the mom as they grow. It also helps them to get ready to move into their new residence.
If you have brought a puppy at home who has not already been weaned, then you might be wondering when to start a puppy on solid food and how to select the best food that can help them grow healthy and stay fit.
Well, you can begin to switch them from their mom’s milk to solid food when they are around 3 to 4 weeks old. This procedure may take several weeks or approximately a month to be finished, no matter what type of solid food you are feeding them.
During this period, you need to keep track of how much amount of food you provide them and how much they eat. After supervising, you should adjust their food accordingly. In this detailed guide, we will tell you everything you need to know about weaning young doggies.
When To Start Puppy On Solid Food?
Your pooch will only drink his mother’s milk in the first month of his life. If the mother feeds multiple puppies or your canine is not growing properly, then you will need to contact your vet, find the milk alternative, and feed it to him manually at least 2 to 6 times a day. Remember, in the first 4 weeks; he will be gaining 5% to 10% body weight daily.
After 4 weeks, you can start the weaning process and gradually transition him from mother’s milk or milk replacer to solid food. We would recommend mixing wet or dry food in milk replacer in equal percentage. This is because he still needs those essential nutrients. Plus, it is easy for him to chew the milky mix.
Around the 4 to 6 weeks, his teeth will start growing; you can gradually lower the percentage of milk in his food and just give him solid food instead. Once he turns 6 months old, you can offer him only solid food 3 to 4 times a day. After that, you can serve him food twice a day, once in the morning and once at night.
How Much To Feed Your Puppy Every Day According To His Weight?
- If his weight is around 5 pounds, give him ½ cup to 5/8 cups a day.
- A 10 pounds puppy will need to eat ¾ cup to 1 cup every day.
- If his weight is 20 pounds, give him 1 ¼ cups to 1 ¾ cups every day.
- A 26 to 50 pounds puppy will need to eat 2 cups to 2 2/3 cups a day.
- If his weight is around 75 to 100 pounds, then 3 1/3 cups to 4 ¼ cups are enough for him.
When he becomes an adult, then you can transition him to adult dog food. He will reach adulthood around the age of 12 months to 24 months, depending on his breed type. You can ask your vet to know if your canine has reached its mature age.
How To Make A Paste And How Much To Feed It To Pooches?
To make the paste, you need to mix puppy food into water or milk alternative. The final consistency should be soft and smooth so that your dog can easily consume it. It would be better if you slightly heat it at around 20 degrees. Heating will enhance food’s taste and make it more tempting for your pooch.
The perfect time to give them food as paste and the exact amount to feed them is reliant on the weight gain of your dog. You must check the food’s nutritional information that you want to feed him as a paste and the formula milk you want to use to make the paste. During the weaning process, growing mutts need twice as many calories and energy per kg of weight as mature canines.
Bear in mind; all dogs have different energy and caloric requirements. How much amount of paste you need to feed to your pup will depend on his age, weight, health condition, and breed type. During weaning, dogs can suffer from digestive problems such as diarrhea and vomiting. Therefore, it is better to feed them paste in small quantities, divide into 4 to 6 servings a day.
How To Determine What Food Is Best For Your Mutt?
Vets recommend feeding high-quality breed-specific food to dogs. When you feed him superior quality and highly nutritious food that is suitable for his current phase of life, he will stay happy, healthy, and grow properly. When he is young, you should provide him puppy food because it is loaded with all the necessary nutrients he requires to grow healthy.
Best of all, it has more calories than dog food, and at the age of 2 to 4 weeks, he needs more calories. If you notice that your pup is experiencing health issues, you should get in touch with your vet to know if you need to transition to a different type of food or brand.
What Should Be Included In The Puppy Food?
Vegetables, grains, fruits, and meat will be included in a premium quality puppy food. It won’t contain artificial flavors, oil, soy, corn, and other unnecessary things. However, good quality food is expensive, but it will be better for your precious furry friend and will also protect him from serious health problems in the long run.
Now, after reading our article, you know that when to start a puppy on solid food. You can start the weaning process around 4 weeks of age and feed him good quality food during this period. When he gets used to solid food, you can finish the switch by feeding him little to no milk replacer at all. Typically, at the age of 2 months, he may have already been familiarized with solid food such as dry kibble or homemade food.