Just got a new puppy or kitten? Congratulations on having a new family member! Like babies; Puppies and kittens have special nutritional needs. Growing up, their nutritional requirements vary from an adult dog or cat. For them to grow into healthy adults, ensure that you feed the correct pet food that is appropriate for its age and size.
Puppies and kittens develop and grow very quickly. Their bones, joints, and immune system have different nutritional requirements which ideally, should be reflected in the food that they eat. Diets that are specially formulated for puppies and kittens contain a higher level of fats and protein for this very reason.
Your puppy or kitten would most likely already be weaned onto solid food when you bring them home. It is recommended to continue feeding the same brand of food that they are currently consuming as sudden changes may result in stomach upsets. However, if you would like to introduce new food to them, you may do so gradually.
Start by adding a small portion of the new food while reducing the amount of the current diet for a few days. Thereafter, increase the portion of the new food while decreasing the portion of the current diet until you have made a complete switch. This would reduce the likelihood of your pets experiencing tummy trouble.
Remember to get food that is appropriate for your puppy’s breed and/or size so that it will receive the right amount of food intake and not gain excess weight as it grows. Some formulas are designed for small breeds while other formulas are designed for the rapid bone and joint development of large and giant breed dogs. Also, for kittens, the best nutrients are derived from diets specially formulated for kittens.
A dog is considered an adult when it reaches 80% of its expected adult size. Whereas a kitten is considered an adult when it is at least 90% of its expected adult weight. Both tend to become adults at around a year old. They no longer require additional calories and nutrients found in puppy and kitten diets and would likely put on unnecessary weight if they continue to consume it.
Besides feeding food suitable for adult dogs and cats only after they are at least a year old, it is not advisable to feed them scraps of human food. Not only does human food lack the necessary nutrients needed for puppies and kittens, but some of them are also toxic to pets. For human food, we are referring to pork rib soup, pizza and burgers meant for human consumption! It could also potentially cause them to develop health problems.
Puppies should never be fed kitten food and vice versa as the nutritional requirements of the two species are very different. Dogs are omnivores and drive their nutrients from both plant and animal sources while cats are obligate carnivores who need meat to survive.
Here’s a feeding guide for puppies and kittens. Observe their eating habits and tweak their feeding schedules accordingly to what works best for both of you.
-Three to four meals per day until your puppy is three weeks old
-Two to three meals per day for puppies up to six months old
-One to two meals per day for dogs over six months old
-Three meals a day when your kitten is three to six months old
-Two meals a day when your kitten is six months old, and thereafter
Remember to make a conscious effort to change your puppies’ or kittens water frequently to ensure that they have access to clean and fresh water every day!
Looking for food suitable for your puppies and kittens? Give The Honest Kitchen a try!
These diets are suitable for puppies as it provides plenty of nutrients for your puppy to grow!
– Grain-Free Turkey Recipe (Embark)
– Limited Ingredients Chicken Recipe (Thrive)
– Limited Ingredients Fish Recipe (Brave)
Not just the puppies get the good food, The Honest Kitchen also produces Grain-Free Turkey Recipe (Grace) for your kittens!
If you are unsure, seek professional help. Your veterinarian will provide you with advice that suits your dog best. Any views or opinions communicated on this page belong to the author and do not represent the views or opinions of any other organizations. This article is meant for us to share our own views and opinions in general. Kindly consult a professional if would like to seek professional advice.
Adopted from sources
– Feeding tips for your new puppy or kitten as they grow. By Liherald.
– Feeding your puppy and kitten: Essential nutrition tips. By Mypetandi.
– A Guide to Ensure Happy & Healthy Puppies and Kittens. By Stkittsvet.
– What To Feed Your New Puppy Or Kitten. By Karen Cornish, Getsetpet.
– Images from Pixabay and Pexels.