5 things you need to know about puppy nutrition

Jul 2, 2022 7:30:54 PM

5 things you need to know about puppy nutrition


When you take on a puppy’s health and wellbeing, its nutrition is a huge part of your responsibility. Nutrition covers everything that contributes to your puppy’s growth and development, specifically her bones, teeth, healthy vision, coat, organs, joints, and muscles.


“At times during their rapid growth and development from weaning until approximately 4 to 6 months of age, puppies, depending on the breed size, require approximately three times more calories, proteins, vitamins and minerals per kilogram of body weight as adult dogs of the same breed size and a higher nutrient intake to support their growing bodies.”

[Source: The Kennel Club]


Just like adults, the growing phase of a puppy’s life requires the right ingredients as so many amazing things are happening as they get bigger (and bigger!). Making sure you provide the best nutrition means you are laying some excellent foundations for the future health of your adult dog.


  • The ‘puppy stage’ depends entirely on your dog’s breed. Whilst it’s true to say that the rapid growth period might start to slow down after 6 months, many breeds continue to grow for up to 2 years. Larger breeds have a longer growth period and so should remain on specially formulated growth food for the entire time. The nutritional requirements of your puppy continue to be greater than those of a fully matured dog until the growth stage is complete. Talk to your breeder or do your research to understand your own dog’s needs.


  • The six essential nutrients your puppy needs are: carbohydrates, proteins, fat, vitamins, minerals, and water. You will find the first five in good ‘complete’ puppy food and you provide water separately – always fresh and always available. Carefully read the label of any puppy food you invest in and choose wisely as it is best practice to stick with the same brand and routine. We have a downloadable leaflet that gives details of our complete puppy food with a detailed ingredient list – link below.


  • The quantity of food is important too. Feeding the right amount is something to be aware of. Most of us are not always fully accurate with feeding and can often be prompted to alter quantities if we notice our pet getting a little fatter or looking too slim. We don’t have this luxury with a pup as we don’t know what their end shape will be. To avoid any doubt, scales are your best friend – keep weighing and feeding in line with the recommended amounts. Trophy’s Nutritional Advisers can help with this and offer a free weighing service which you will be grateful for as your puppy changes throughout the first few months. Don’t be tempted to overfeed in a bid to accelerate the growing phase – it can be dangerous and add undue strain on your puppy’s organs and joints.


  • Treats should be 10% or less of your puppy’s diet. Treats always sound indulgent and a little bit naughty but feeding small, healthy, tasty rewards can be a beneficial part of their nutrition. Creating good habits with highly nutritional treats means they are less likely to beg for food or associate human food with their own. There is a mountain of treats to choose from so check the labels carefully, never feed rawhide and consider baking your own! We loved the sound of ‘Sally’s Peanut Butter Bacon Dog Treats’ – for the dogs of course! Link below.


  • DHA (Omega 3 essential fatty acid) is vital for neurological and retinol function. This ingredient, typically derived from fish, provides the good fats your puppy needs for brain and eye development. It also aids its central nervous system and can ease some allergies, particularly skin complaints. It can be added as a supplement or you should ideally choose a puppy food, like the Trophy Super Premium puppy food, which has DHA included.


Feeding your puppy and helping her to grow into a fit and well adult is a wonderful thing to observe and doubtless you will record every step through photos and video. Use these as a diary to chart her progress and note any changes in her appearance. By following these guidelines, you should only see a happy, beautiful pet who loves her food!







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