How food requirement changes with age in dogs?

You may be aware that it makes no sense to feed an infant the same food as an adult. The case is similar for canines! A puppy has different dietary needs than an adult dog, or a dog that is pregnant, or an older dog. And as a pet owner, you will need to consider these changes and modify the food as needed. The first thing to know about a dog’s diet is the basics. Water, protein, fatty acids, carbohydrates, minerals, and vitamins are the six nutrients that all dogs require in sufficient amounts to live well and healthy. A dog’s nutritional needs change throughout its lifespan depending on the age, reproductive status, level of activity, overall health, and environmental variables. It is essential to buy pet food based on the dog’s age and health condition. Look at how food requirement changes with age in dogs:

Optimum diet for puppies

The time it takes a growing puppy to reach adult body weight varies greatly, with larger breeds needing more time than smaller ones. At about 9 to 10 months, small, and medium breeds reach 99% of their adult weight, whereas large and giant breeds do so at about 12 to 24 months. A puppy’s dietary needs differ from those of a human and are almost twice as great as an adult dog’s. Puppies need a higher protein intake than adult dogs or newborns and highly digestible proteins for optimal growth. Adult dogs should eat at least 25 g of protein per 1000 calories. However, this recommendation rises to 50 g/1000 calories for pregnant and lactating dogs and 56 g/1000 calories for puppies.

Nutritional requirements for dogs

Too soon, the puppy stage will complete. Depending on the breed, your puppy can entirely transition to an adult diet after around a year. However, you should implement this modification gradually to prevent disturbing a dog’s digestive system. Start by adding a small amount of adult dog food into the puppy diet, and gradually increase the proportion of adult food each day.

Because vitamins and minerals are essential, some dog owners consider it safe to supplement their dogs’ diets. No supplements are needed in a dog’s food unless a doctor advises doing so. It might even harm the dog’s delicate calcium and phosphorus balance. Best to consult a Bangalore pet hospital for dog nutritional requirements if you are unsure about the food to add.

Food for aging dogs

An aging dog has reached the third quarter of its expected lifespan. Once a dog reaches a particular age, the aging symptoms will start to show more. The symptoms might become more noticeable at 12 years old for small dogs, 10 years for medium-sized dogs, and 8 years for large dogs. When dogs reach this stage of life, dietary efforts to fight the effects of aging need to be stepped up. They will benefit from this by remaining healthy for as long as feasible.

Pregnant and lactating dogs

The female dog typically goes through a 63-day pregnancy. Until the last third of the pregnancy, when most baby weight gain occurs, energy needs don’t significantly increase. As a result, it is essential to prevent overfeeding in the early stages of pregnancy. Overfeeding might cause the dog to accumulate extra fat and could put at risk for injury during whelping (the process of giving birth). The amount of food should be increased by 15% of the dog’s normal ratio every week, starting in the fifth week of pregnancy. This reasonable schedule will allow for a steady rise in food intake over the second half of pregnancy.

The dog will consume 60% more food at whelping than they did at mating. The dog has to eat enough during the first four weeks after whelping to sustain the increasing family of puppies. Depending on the size and age of the litter, they may need to consume up to four times the recommended daily limit of calories and other nutrients during her peak breastfeeding, which occurs three to four weeks following whelping.

Final Thoughts

You should always talk to a veterinarian about the food you are feeding your pet because dogs have different dietary needs through different life stages. Also, it is essential to consider the food mentioned above requirement changes with age in dogs.