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Up to what age to soak the food for a puppy

Feeding puppies under one month of age

In order to control the growth and development of puppies, in order to know how they eat, they should be weighed daily. This procedure should always be carried out at the same time and preferably before meals. But sometimes this can be difficult due to the fact that hungry puppies are horny and difficult to keep them on the scales. Then you should try to weigh the puppies after eating: the well-fed behave calmer. But in this case, you will continue to weigh them after eating.

In order to make it easier to distinguish between “babies”, it is necessary immediately at birth to put colored woolen threads around their neck, which must be changed as the puppies grow, so as not to cut into the neck. Weighing results should be entered in the table.

During the first day, puppies may not gain weight, this is not scary. But on every next day there should be stable gains. Those puppies that do not gain weight well should be placed more often on the back, the milkiest nipples, making sure that they are not pushed away by the stronger ones. If you are feeding puppies “in two shifts”, these puppies should arrange “extraordinary” feedings.

For newborn puppies, the ambient temperature is very important. Hypothermia in puppies is very dangerous and can lead to their death. The temperature should be maintained at 22-24 ° C. Starting from 6-7 days, the temperature is gradually reduced. Drafts must not be allowed.

Puppies should always be full. If no more than six puppies were born or left behind, then they are with the mother all the time. You only need to make sure that strong puppies do not push back the weak.

Puppies that are losing or poorly gaining weight require special attention. Perhaps they should be fed. The weakest, especially if there are fears for their lives, can be supported with aminovit or gamavit (0.3-0.5 ml intramuscularly once). Well-fed puppies sleep, hungry ones crawl and squeak. However, it happens that puppies become so weak that, despite hunger, they lie quietly.

The following indicators should serve as a guide in the development of puppies:

  • 9-day-old puppies should double their daily weight;
  • 15-day-old puppies should triple their daily weight;
  • by the 25th day, puppies increase their daily weight by 5-6 times;
  • by the 30th day, they increase it 6-7 times;
  • on the 5-8th day, the puppies open their auditory canals, they begin to hear;
  • on the 10-15th day, the puppies open their eyes;
  • by the 14-16th day, hearing becomes normal;
  • on the 20-25th day, the puppies erupt milk teeth;
  • after that, within 8-10 days, the canines and incisors completely erupt;
  • by two months milk false-rooted teeth appear;
  • the puppy’s limbs begin to grow in length from four weeks of age.

In the first two weeks of life, the development of puppies largely depends on the nutrition of the mother. Their only food is mother’s milk. How to increase the amount of milk in a bitch. see the chapter “Feeding a lactating bitch”.

If there are more than eight puppies, they should be divided into two batches. The first batch of puppies is under the bitch and eats, the second batch is in a box and sleeps. It is necessary to take care of those puppies that will lie in the box. It is very good to cover the bottom of the box with a piece of fur, under which you place a heating pad. If there is no fur, any natural shaggy fabric will do. You can also cover the puppies from above, but the main thing here is not to overdo it, otherwise the puppies may suffocate. The heating pad should be placed before the 8-9th day.

If your puppies are divided into two parties, then before placing the “babies” from the non-feeding part to the nipples, you should first give them to the bitch so that she licks them. At this age, the puppies are not able to do their own thing, so the help of the bitch is necessary. If the bitch is not good at licking the puppies, then either you have to do the massage yourself to simulate the mother’s licking (using a piece of cotton wool dipped in vaseline or vegetable oil), or make her lick the puppies. To do this, you can resort to trick. If, after your massage with vegetable oil, the bitch does not start licking the puppies, then you can try to lubricate their tummies and anus with honey, sour cream, butter, then surely the “mother” will get down to business.

What to feed 4 week old puppies when starting to wean onto solid food part 1

In the absence of such massage, the puppies will not be able to go to the toilet and gastrointestinal problems will begin, and so serious that the puppies may even die. Puppies with stool retention are immediately noticeable. they are anxious, refuse to eat, they have a swollen belly.

Comparative composition of milk from domestic and farm animals

With numerous litters, due to a lack of milk, puppies may gain weight poorly, daily weight gain will be very small and, inevitably, you will have to start early feeding. In this case, it is very important that the bitch feeds the children on her own for at least the first 3-5 days, while she is producing colostrum.

If there is a need for early feeding, another nurse bitch is the ideal solution. This may be a bitch who has few puppies or who has false puppies at this moment.

If a wet nurse cannot be found, artificial feeding should be resorted to. Not knowing the composition of the bitch’s milk leads to the use of inadequate substitutes.

It is not recommended to feed newborn puppies with infant formula. Infant formula contains a lot of sugar. Their use often leads to the development of severe forms of diathesis in puppies, and sometimes to the death of puppies.

For feeding newborn puppies, experts offer various options for mixtures, the closest in composition to the milk of a bitch.

For example: take 800 ml of cow’s milk (pasteurized), 200 ml of 20% cream and one raw egg. Mix all this and add, with rapid stirring, 4 g of citric acid dissolved in a tablespoon of boiled water.

Or: 800 ml cow’s milk, 200 ml 20% cream, one yolk, two drops of a multivitamin.

Such a mixture is prepared for a maximum of a day, stored in the refrigerator, and heated to the dog’s body temperature (38-39 ° C) before feeding. Puppies of this age are fed often, after two to three hours, not forgetting every time about a belly massage.

And although Western experts assure that cow’s milk is not suitable as a complementary food for newborns, since it can cause severe allergies, during the fifteen-year practice of breeding schnauzers by the author of this book, this has never been noted. Possibly allergy-prone breeds such as Chow Chow or Shar Pei cannot tolerate milk.

Currently, Western feed manufacturers produce milk powder that best suits the bitch: W1, Bosch, Germany; A1, Royal Canin, France, etc.

The puppies should be fed before they suckle the mother. Fed until the puppies eat, after which they are placed under the bitch.

If the bitch has enough milk, then complementary feeding begins with a decrease in daily weight gain. This period can even fluctuate in one bitch in different litters. The approximate time for starting complementary foods in large litters (10-12 puppies) is 5-6 days; for litters up to seven puppies, complementary foods begin from 14-16 days. It is advisable to start feeding the puppies no earlier than their eyes open.

Typically, puppies are recommended to be fed from a bottle with a nipple, in which the hole should be such that the liquid drips on its own. But practice has shown that it is much more convenient, especially for feeding newborn puppies, to use a children’s 50-gram syringe with a rubber tip. If the puppy does not suck well, you should lightly squeeze the sides of the syringe with your fingers, making sure that the puppy does not swell.

If you start feeding the puppies at the right time. on the 14-16th day, then at this age the best complementary food is calcined cottage cheese, removed with a certain amount of whey and mixed until smooth. It’s a good idea to add two drops of multivitamins and yolk to this mass, if the mass is thick, you can add a little milk. Puppies can be given kefir.

You will have to cook the calcined curd yourself. To do this, the milk is brought almost to a boil and calcium chloride is poured into it at the rate of 4-5 tablespoons of 10% calcium chloride per 1 liter of milk. The milk is immediately removed from the heat and allowed to stand for a while with constant stirring. As soon as the milk is separated from the whey, it is removed with a slotted spoon or filtered through cheesecloth, without squeezing, and given to the puppies. Serum is given to drink to the bitch.

Complementary foods begin to give the puppy once a day, then two, three, and so on. During this period, you should not introduce more than one new product per day in order to know exactly how the puppy’s body perceives it. If a food is causing a disorder, it is temporarily removed from the diet.

Your task during this period is to accustom the Puppy to a variety of foods, so that when he gets to the new owner, he does not have digestive problems. By 1-1.5 months, the puppy should be accustomed to a wide variety of foods.

From the 18th day, cereals are introduced from well-boiled cereals in broth or milk. For puppies whose complementary feeding began in a timely manner, milk porridge from finely ground cereals can be introduced into the diet. It is best to prepare “assorted” from them: oatmeal, buckwheat, millet, rice, grind in a coffee grinder, add a little semolina there and cook liquid milk porridge from such a mixture. They should be well boiled and liquid enough to flow out of the nipple or syringe.

From the 20th day, when the puppies have teeth, they begin to give ground meat. “Shop” minced meat is not suitable for this purpose. it contains too much fat, and pork is very often added to it. Meat should be given as follows. The ground meat should be divided into equal portions, rolled into balls and given to each puppy his “share”. Meat is initially given once a day. Meat feed can be substituted with ground boiled boneless fish, boiled rabbit or poultry. After a few days, you can already give scraped meat or fish. After five days, they switch from minced meat or scraped meat to finely chopped meat. At the age of one month, puppies of large breeds should receive 100-150 g of meat per day.

From the 20th day, you can feed soups with vegetables, pre-mash the vegetables with a fork.

From the 25th day, you need to give raw grated vegetables with animal or vegetable fats. Best of all. grated carrots with sour cream.

When feeding, you should alternate meat feeding with dairy and vegetable. Complementary foods should have a temperature of the bitch’s milk. about 38 ° C.

Feed the puppies one at a time. The puppies do not master the technique of self-feeding at once. They either dip their nose to the very eyebrows, then slap their tongue in the air, so the first days you should feed everyone, holding in their hands, substituting a bowl under his nose and correcting the baby’s actions. When each puppy has mastered the process independently, sitting in the owner’s arms, you can feed them on the floor, and it is more convenient to feed each one from a separate bowl. After the puppies have mastered independent food from the bowl, the food should be made thicker.

With age, the number of feedings is gradually increased so that by the month the puppies eat six times at regular intervals. At night, at the age of one month, you no longer need to feed them.

Sometimes puppies, especially weak or “artificial” puppies, have indigestion. The reason for this may be the mother’s inadequate diet. In this case, it is necessary to give a decoction of chamomile with a few drops of dill water. Five-day-old puppies are watered with a decoction for 36 hours, gradually adding the milk mixture (first 3/4 of the decoction of 1/4 of the mixture, etc.) in order to go to normal feeding by the second day. The already mentioned “Heel” preparations can come to the rescue: “Diar-heel”, “Echinacea compositum”, “Berberis-gommakord”. (How to give them. see above).

If the puppies are three weeks old and eat from a bowl, oak or elm bark powder added to the food works well. Good results are obtained by using bifitrilac on the tip of a match.

If diarrhea begins in several puppies in a litter and does not respond to usual treatment within a day, this may be a symptom of a formidable disease. colibacillosis, from which the entire litter can die. Overfed “artificial” people are most prone to this.

As soon as you start feeding the puppies, you need to take care of the water, otherwise the concentration of salts in the urine increases, irritation of the mucous membrane of the bladder may occur and mucous secretions may appear from the urogenital organs, sticking together the wool. Several times a day you should give them water, first pouring it into their mouth from a syringe or from a nipple, gradually accustoming them to drinking independently.

As the puppies grow, the bitch will move away from them more often and the intervals between feedings will increase. You should not force the bitch to constantly be near the babies. As she accumulates milk, the dog will come to them on its own.

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During this period, the puppies very quickly grow sharp claws, with which they are able to severely scratch the bitch’s nipples. This, by the way, can also serve as a reason for the fact that she will not be very willing to go to the puppies. Therefore, as long as the puppies suck their mother, they should trim their claws once a week. The very tip of the claw should be shortened without touching its sensitive and painful pulp, after which the claw should be well processed with a nail file.

Do not forget that up to four days of age it is necessary to dock the puppies’ tails (if you are going to do this), and remove the dewclaws on the hind limbs (recently they have been removed on the front ones as well).

The growth and development of a dog is divided into several stages. Over the period from 2 to 6 months, the length of the puppy‘s limbs increases and in fact ends there. The most intensive growth of the puppy occurs generally up to 6 months. The height at the withers from birth to 4 months increases by an average of 87-108%, from 4 to 6 months by 3-7%, from 6 to 8 months by 7-8%. At 8-10 months, growth actually ends, although the dog develops and forms before two and a half, and sometimes up to three years. From this we can conclude: the younger the puppy, the faster it grows, and therefore, it needs more energy, and only proper nutrition can provide a sufficient amount of energy.

By the age of one month, puppies should gain a certain weight, typical of their breed. The breeder should know about this in advance, and you can get this information at the club from the leader of this breed. As a rule, if dogs are knitted according to plan, then the latter must promptly inform the owner of the requirements for the weight of the puppies. In case the puppies have not gained such weight, the litter may be rejected and not activated. In a month, the puppy should be well-nourished, but not fat, active and be able to eat well on its own.

If you decide to feed the puppies with ready-made foods, then complementary foods, as a rule, begin at about the same time as when feeding with natural products, that is, from the moment the puppies open their eyes. Dry food is soaked in water and kneaded to a mushy state. The density of the feed should be medium. The lips are smeared with the puppy and a bowl of mashed food is offered. Usually puppies start eating this food. As the puppies grow older, the amount of liquid in the feed is reduced and gradually taught to dry. If, in terms of dry matter, the amount of calcium in the feed is 1.8% and phosphorus is 1.6%, then these mineral salts should not be added additionally. Higher levels of these minerals in the diet can only harm growing puppies.

Growing puppies should only be fed super premium food. It is impossible to save on feeding during this period, since what the puppy cannot receive during this period of life will never be compensated for in the future.

The use of low-calorie or economy-class food when feeding puppies, especially large breeds, leads to the fact that the animals may develop conformation disorders, such as a saggy belly, lack of muscle tissue and bones, and growth retardation. The use of low-protein feeds (no more than 20%) at this age can lead to the development of hip dysplasia. Optimal for puppies are foods with 29% protein.

However, do not chase the high m of protein in feed, which is especially characteristic of Royal Canin products. This company produces some types of feed with such a large m of protein that no other company has analogues. When using such feed, it should be remembered that although protein does not have a direct harmful effect on skeletal development, its excess amount is broken down by the liver and used as an energy source, increasing insulin-like growth factors in the body, which contributes to accelerating the growth rate of animals. Therefore, feeding large breed puppies with high protein foods (more than 32% protein) can cause serious orthopedic pathologies.

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Different breeds of dogs increase in size in different ways. The rapid growth of the puppy continues up to 6 months, and after that it slows down. In some breeds, growth is noted up to 3 years.

How old do dogs of different breeds grow??

When a new little resident appears in the house. a puppy, all attention becomes riveted to him. We try to do everything to keep him healthy and comfortable. Of course, special attention is paid to the growth and development of the puppy.

In fact, this is very important: the sooner a problem is revealed, the easier it will be to solve it.

In this article, we will look at the age to which different breeds of dogs grow, and also find out what factors affect the proper development of an individual.

Factors affecting growth

Some dog owners may be worried about whether their pet is growing normally. Most often, they simply do not notice the development of the puppy, since after six months it begins to grow evenly and slowly. But still, some factors can influence the development of the dog.

  • The size of the pet and the speed of its development depend primarily on the breed of the dog: small ones develop faster than large species.
  • It is important to remember that males are larger in size and weight than females.
  • Nutrition of the puppy plays an important role in development. If you provide the correct diet for the baby, then perhaps he will be even slightly larger than other representatives of his breed.
  • Health is the key to high-quality growth of a pet, because a sick puppy will spend all its strength on healing and maintaining the body, and not on the process of growing up.
  • In order for the puppy to be in normal tone, so that his muscles and skeleton are formed correctly, it is necessary to give him constant physical activity. This concept includes: playing with a pet, walking in the fresh air, training.
  • The presence of genetic diseases.


In order for the puppy to develop and grow correctly and quickly, it is necessary to carry out disease prevention on time.

Deworming is carried out every 3 months and only when the puppy is already 60 days old. Also, during this period, the baby can be vaccinated against a number of diseases, treated against parasites: fleas, ticks. It is necessary to make scheduled visits to the veterinarian.

To avoid an eye infection, you need to wash the puppy’s eyes with a decoction of chamomile every few days.

The diet

Throughout its life, a dog must eat properly in order to maintain its health. But, as mentioned earlier, it is for the puppy that it is important that only useful substances are in its diet, since during this period the bone skeleton and the body are formed.

When feeding a pet, the owner must adhere to a number of rules.

  • You need to feed a pet up to three months old 5-6 times. From 3 months to six months, the frequency of feeding is reduced to three. After six months, the dog needs to be given food twice: in the morning and in the evening. These are average values, but they can vary depending on the breed. Remember that overfeeding, like underfeeding, is detrimental to your pet’s body.
  • The first complementary food should be introduced somewhere in 2-3 months, but the puppy should be taught to new food gradually. You can start with dairy products, cereals, boiled vegetables, meat (boiled). In no case do not give the baby offal: small bones, skin, offal, etc., since his body is not yet able to digest such heavy food.
  • Food can be given to a puppy from 3 months, while buying super-premium or holistic types: such ready-made food contains all the necessary substances.

If you want your pet to eat natural foods, then you need to know what food you can give and what not. The fish on the puppy’s menu should only be boiled; it is advisable to heat the meat too, since it can be infected with helminths. Tubular bones, overly fatty, spicy and salty foods, as well as sweets, potatoes and pastries should be excluded. You can give dairy products, cereals, vegetables, dried fruits. Large pork or beef bones are also good for the dog.

Water should always be available for the pet, and whey and broth can also be given.

Growing up periods

To track a dog’s growth, you need to know how it develops with age. There are 5 main stages.

  • Embryonic. This is the time the puppy spends in the womb. In him, organ systems are laid, the individual itself is formed. The puppy gains weight from 6 to 500-600 grams (depending on the breed).
  • Sucking puppy. This is the period from the birth of the dog to 1.5–2 months. the time when the puppy is completely dependent on the mother: she feeds him and spends most of the time with him. Teeth begin to erupt, the puppy learns the world around him, grows up about twice.
  • Puppy. From 2 months to 6. At this time, the baby usually has new owners, it is very important to properly adapt him to new, unfamiliar food.
  • Young growth. At this stage (from six months to a year), the character of the dog is laid. It is very important to start training your pet during this period. Also during this time puberty occurs.
  • An adult dog. This is the last stage of development. from one to three years. The dog practically does not grow, mainly muscle mass is built up. By the end of this period, the dog’s skeleton is fully formed.


Small breed owners often become concerned that puppies stop growing after six months. But this is normal, because small individuals develop much faster. Some dogs reach puberty at 7-8 months.

  • Yorkshire Terrier is one of the most popular small breeds. They are called Yorkies for short. Development lasts up to 8-9 months. Their puppy appearance does not change until old age, these dogs are perfect for keeping in an apartment.
  • The pug is a friendly but very lazy dog. Its weight can reach 6-8 kg, and its height can be up to 32 cm. This dog develops mainly up to 9 months, actively gaining weight.
  • The Pekingese is a Chinese breed. This dog is good-natured, but stubborn and wayward. She has a very long coat and therefore requires careful maintenance. The height at the withers is up to 23 cm, and the weight is up to 5 kg. Development. up to 8 months, sometimes up to a year.
  • The Pomeranian has a toy appearance. These mini-dogs can be 18 cm tall, in some cases reach 30 cm, weighing up to 3 kg. It grows only up to six months, and after that bones and muscles become stronger.
  • Staffordshire bull terrier. Its height is from 30 to 40 cm, and its weight is up to 15 kg. Staffs are very intelligent, loyal and loyal dogs. They should always be in the company of a person. An adult becomes at 10-12 months.
  • Dachshunds are famous hunters. They grow up to 8 months in height and length, and then in breadth.
  • Toy Terrier is a smooth-haired, cute and playful dog. She is known for her furry ears. Growth. only 25 cm.It grows up to six months.
  • Chihuahua is the smallest dog breed in the world. Her height does not exceed 23 cm, and her weight is 3 kg. She is a very loyal, energetic and graceful dog. Grows up to 8 months.

Puppy development stages

It is customary to distinguish between several main stages of development of dogs.

How old is a dog considered a puppy?

There are no clear time boundaries that determine until what age a dog is considered a puppy. It all depends on the breed, as well as a number of related factors: genetics, housing conditions, training, nutrition, etc. On average, the main physical growth and psychological formation of an animal occurs in the first year of life.


From one to three years. The final formation of the exterior and character. The dog ceases to be a puppy and establishes a clear position of behavior in the pack (among other dogs) and at home. Challenging leadership or, conversely, trying to “rebuild” the animal’s temperament is almost impossible.


From one and a half months to six months. During this period, there is an active growth of tubular bones, teeth, muscle muscles and sternum. With proper care and proper nutrition, the animal grows at the withers and approximately doubles its body weight.

The character is also changing. The emotional connection with the mother is finally broken, more independence and self-confidence appear. It is important to start training the dog on time, otherwise it may feel permissive and try to establish its own rules of the game in the house.

Young growth

6 to 12 months. Against the background of a noticeable decrease in growth rates and weight gain, hormonal changes in the body begin. In males, testosterone levels increase, and in females, their first estrus. The attitude towards other dogs changes, the so-called flight instinct arises.

On the one hand, the call of nature and the natural search for a mating partner, on the other, is the duty to obey the owner and be obedient. This period is similar to adolescence in humans. approximately 13-15 years. Therefore, the behavior becomes not always adequate: the dog may be nervous, not respond to commands, show anxiety and give out other reactions that were not previously characteristic of it.


It starts from birth until the moment when the mother stops feeding the puppies with milk. Until about 14 days old, babies develop sense organs. they learn to move on four paws, explore the environment, try to play with their littermates and get a different experience of “communicating” with reality.

After the first two weeks of getting used to extrauterine life, the puppies begin to socialize. The more they become like dogs, the more clearly their natural instincts are manifested. In the process of games, teeth begin to be actively involved and an understanding of the force of the bite is formed, and, consequently, the restrictions “can” and “must not”. Leadership qualities are shown in the struggle for the most delicious milk nipple located in the groin area of ​​the lactating bitch.

Differences in development in different breeds

Depending on what breed of dog, you can judge the approximate timing of its growing up. Large breed puppies grow and form much more slowly than small dogs. For example, Yorkshire Terriers, Pekingese, Chihuahuas and Dachshunds reach sexual maturity between 7-9 months. Pugs can stop growing as early as 6 months, and then actively gain weight, enlarging in width. Rottweilers need about two years to become adult dogs, and German Shepherds, although they finish active growth around the end of the first year of life, are fully formed only by two years.

If we correlate human and canine age, then the proportion will be approximately 1: 7. Cynologists have deduced the following pattern:

  • Puppy 6 months old. 10 years old child;
  • Dog 1 year old. teenager 14-15 years old;
  • 3 years old. young man 28-30 years old;
  • 10 years old. “beginner” pensioner;
  • 21 years old. a deep 100 year old man.
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How to soak dry puppy food?

The addition of water to dry puppy foods is usually practiced during the training phase of industrial diets and the transition from natural food to a more convenient and complete for the pet type of food for the owners. There is nothing complicated in this procedure, but a few nuances still need to be considered.

How to soak dry puppy food: instructions

The main rule when soaking dry food is not to harvest it for future use. Dry food, to which water has been added, deteriorates very quickly at ambient temperature, losing its beneficial properties and causing a pet’s risk of digestive upset. You will have to prepare food just before feeding and in the amount that you plan to give your pet at a time. Therefore, before soaking dry puppy food, determine the daily value recommended by the manufacturer of the diet for the specific age and weight of the animal.

Next, divide it into portions (the planned number of feedings), and measure the grams already received on a kitchen scale. How many times a day you need to feed puppies at 2, 4, 7 months and older, we talked about in this article.

Now on how to properly soak dry puppy food:

  • Add boiled or purified water heated to about 40 ° C to the granules.
  • Wait 20 to 40 minutes and offer food to the puppy.

The extent to which dry food is soaked depends on the time you take to soak. The longer you wait, the more the feed will become soaked, but nevertheless, it most likely will not turn into porridge, and the more meat in the diet, the longer the pellet density will remain. Therefore, if you need to get semi-liquid food, then it is better to grind dry food in a blender, and only then soak.

If the puppy has not eaten a portion, then its leftovers must be stored in the refrigerator for no more than 12 hours, and before the next feeding, it is better to slightly warm the soaked dry food in the microwave, because cold food smells weaker, and the pet may refuse it.

There is no need to feed the puppy with soaked food on an ongoing basis. As soon as he gets used to the new diet, it is advisable to start adding dry granules to the bowl, gradually increasing their proportion, until your pet begins to eat only them. Dry food is a complete and healthy food for both a puppy and an adult dog, which your pet can eat throughout its life, while remaining healthy and active.

Why do you need to soak dry food

Why is it necessary to soak the feed? After all, puppies have itchy gums and they like to chew on something hard. The problem is that when puppies’ milk teeth begin to wobble, and this happens at the age of 4 to 5 months, attempts to crunch dry granules are accompanied by uncomfortable and painful sensations.

After, the stage of eruption of milk teeth begins, and feeding with dry granules at this stage can lead to their curvature.

In addition, soft food in the form of porridge is more suitable for feeding dogs for a number of reasons. Your pet’s gastrointestinal tract has yet to adapt to the digestion of dry food.

It is interesting! Dry food is produced in several stages. The products are obeyed, crushed, enriched with vitamins and minerals, moistened, pressed and dried again. That is why the structure of the granules is somewhat similar to a sponge that absorbs all the moisture around.

After birth, puppies drink colostrum, because their microflora is sterile, that is, free of beneficial and harmful bacteria. Colostrum bacteria help babies digest dairy products.

Later, as the puppy gets older, he tries new foods, which helps the beneficial bacteria to adapt to the digestion of unfamiliar food. If dry pellets are introduced into the diet abruptly, the bacteria simply cannot cope and the puppy will have indigestion.

How to soak dry puppy food

When puppies are born, they feed on colostrum, and then, on mother’s milk. The situation does not change until the puppies open their eyes and begin to leave the nest. Natural curiosity makes babies curious about the food their mother consumes. After opening the eyes, babies’ sense of smell is also exacerbated, which they are guided by, determining the edibility of products.

At the age of 1–1.5 months, supplementation is introduced into the diet of puppies. Depending on the preferences of the breeder, supplementation can be industrial or natural.

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  • As a natural supplement, babies receive boiled minced meat, broth, milk and dairy products.
  • The commercial diet consists of puppy food (pâté or chunks with gravy) and powdered milk replacer.

By the age of three months, babies have erupted all milk teeth. Before moving to a new home, puppies receive the first, basic vaccination and parasite prophylaxis.

Important! Immediately after moving to a new home, it is not recommended to change the diet and frequency of feeding the pet, since stress has a detrimental effect on the functioning of the gastrointestinal tract.


How and what to soak puppy food?

There are several options for how and what to soak dry food. The main rule is that the soaking liquid should be warm, but not too hot. If you put the pellets in cold water, they will be saturated with moisture for about half an hour. If the temperature of the liquid is close to 38 degrees, 10-15 minutes will be enough.

Pour the granules into a metal bowl and cover with warm liquid. When the food swells and increases in volume, it must be chopped with a fork or blender. The resulting gruel is mixed in the required proportion with the usual food. If the puppy refuses mixed feed, chop (loosen) it again and warm it up a little.

Note! Warm food has a more attractive smell, which stimulates the pet’s appetite.

How to soak dry puppy food

It is undesirable for puppies to give too much load on the gums, so dry food is introduced into the diet soaked. How to properly soak dry puppy food and why is it needed? When is it better to use milk or kefir for soaking? Let’s take a closer look.


Warm milk can be used to soak the feed. Depending on the usual diet, they use:

  • Natural goat milk diluted with water (1: 1). if the puppy eats natural food.
  • Lump milk substitute. if the puppy eats industrial food.
  • Powdered milk. if stunting or poor appetite is observed.

After soaking in milk, the granules will infuse for a little longer. You will also notice that the food cools down longer. Milk-soaked pellets cannot be stored until the next feed, so a fresh portion must be prepared each time.

Up to what age to feed the puppy with soaked food

To what age should dry food be soaked? The answer to this question depends on the individual characteristics of the pet. Large dogs take longer to form, so the process of changing teeth can be delayed. Teeth change faster in small dogs, but problems with bite curvature and two rows of teeth are common. In addition, some dog breeds are prone to oral pathologies and gum problems.

Statistically, a puppy is ready for dry food from the age of 7 months. To make the transition to dry food comfortable, the granules begin to be mixed into the soaked food or given as a separate feeding. In the first stages, the amount of dry granules should not exceed 25% of the total daily food intake. Before adding dry food to the diet, make sure that the puppy is able and willing to drink water.

Tip: as soon as you start feeding the puppy dry food, make sure that there are always several voluminous drinking bowls with fresh water available to him.

Introduction of soaked feed into the diet

Industrial feeds are divided into economy, premium, super premium and holistic classes. If the puppy grows and develops normally, the best choice will be super premium class food. All products for puppies are available in the form of pates, pastes or chunks with gravy.

Dry food is also available for puppies from 4 months of age. Their difference from adult products is in the size of the granules and their density. Dry food for puppies shines a little, which indicates that they are higher in calories and fat content.

Despite the availability of dry food for puppies on the market and the recommendations of the breeders, veterinarians insist on soaking the food until the pet’s teeth change.

When to switch from puppy food to dog food

Diet is one way to tell the difference between a puppy and an adult dog. Puppy food has more calories than adult dog food because growing puppies need more energy to fuel the day. When your puppy stops growing, you will gradually switch to adult dog food.

In general, you should start switching to adult formula dog food when your puppy stops growing. The exact “when” depends on the size of your dog:

  • Small breeds: 9-12 months.
  • Medium breeds: about 12 months.
  • Large breeds: 12-16 months.

But remember: just because your puppy has stopped growing physically does not mean that he is fully mature emotionally and mentally.

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How to find out a dog’s age?

If your dog came from a shelter, you may not know exactly when it was born. Wondering how to tell if your new puppy is really a puppy?

Younger dogs tend to be more active and energetic. Dogs slow down with age. But even an older adult dog can have puppy bursts of energy! The best way to know your dog’s age is to watch for the physical signs of aging.

Start with their teeth. If your new puppy has shiny white teeth that feel a little small for his jaw, he may be less than 16 weeks old. By the time dogs become adults, they already have permanent teeth.

Other physical signs of aging include:

  • Graying around the muzzle
  • Cloudy or pale eye color
  • Decreased energy or lameness

For dogs that are on the line between puppyhood and adulthood, it can be difficult to guess their exact ages. You can always ask your veterinarian to assess your dog’s age.

Emotional maturity of dogs

On the other hand, emotional maturity is when a dog acts like a dog and not like a puppy. As with any other aspect of a puppy’s development, the process of becoming emotionally mature occurs over time. You may not see it, but one day you will realize that your puppy has become a dog.

Emotional maturity coincides with the alignment of your puppy’s hormonal surges. As puppies grow and mature, they can act, check boundaries, and “get in trouble.” But somewhere between one and a half years old, your puppy will calm down and his adult personality will emerge.

Puppies mature on their own, so it is difficult to determine the exact moment when a puppy becomes an adult. As your puppy grows, watch for signs of emotional maturity:

  • Listens and responds adequately to training
  • Calms down easier
  • Listens to and responds to social cues from other dogs.

Sometimes the answer to the question “when the puppy is no longer a puppy” is simple: “when can you say that he is an adult.” It depends on your specific puppy and can happen over time.

Growing up is a process

It goes without saying, but your puppy is unique! Although puppy development follows a general schedule, don’t be alarmed if your puppy doesn’t mature at the same rate as his littermates.

Usually puppies become adult dogs between the ages of one and two years.

But that doesn’t mean they wake up on their first birthday in the morning and suddenly become adult dogs! In fact, puppy maturation is a process and it varies from dog to dog depending on size, breed, socialization, and more.

When a dog becomes an adult?

Puppies grow up so fast. One day they fall asleep in your lap, and the next day they are too big to fit in! But when the puppy stops being a puppy and becomes an adult dog?

Read on to learn about the aging process of a puppy and how to know when your puppy is no longer a puppy.

Puberty and physical maturity of dogs

Most dogs reach sexual maturity at around six months of age. Puberty is the physical stage at which a dog can physically give birth to puppies. Having puppies may seem like a very adult, but if you’ve ever spent time with a six month old puppy, you know he hasn’t grown up yet.

Likewise, a puppy can become physically mature even before it is fully mature. Physical maturity is when your puppy reaches adult height, which depends on the breed. In general, small breeds are fully reared at around 12 months of age, while larger breeds may take one to two years to complete growth.

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In fact, if you’ve raised a puppy, you’ve probably experienced the frustration of having a physically mature pet that doesn’t quite know how to control its body.

Still not sure if your puppy is an adult? Here’s a checklist:

  • Sexually mature
  • Physically adult
  • Emotionally mature
  • Responsive to learning
  • Other dogs look at them and react to them like other adult dogs.

Some puppies become dogs at the age of one year, and some dogs take up to two years to fully mature. If you are unsure how old your dog is, ask your veterinarian.

One way to get your puppy to grow into a well-adapted adult dog is to keep him socialized throughout his puppyhood.!

Up to what age to soak the food for a puppy

Containing all the essential nutrients, mother’s milk is the best nutrition for puppies as they grow up. Although complete cessation of breastfeeding usually occurs at 6-8 weeks, most puppies begin to show interest in adult food as early as 3-4 weeks. During this period, you may notice how your little pets are spinning around mom’s bowl or licking food from her paws.

It is during this time that it is best to begin the gradual transition to food intended for puppies. If your choice fell on dry food, then at first it is advisable to stir it with a little water. As the puppy gets older, it will be possible to add less water to the food. However, remember: do not sharply wean your pet from mother’s milk and immediately feed him dry food. this can negatively affect the puppy’s digestive system.

Puppies enjoy learning about the world around them, but they need a lot of energy to do so. If you are faced with the question of how to feed your growing pet, try giving him special food for puppies. it contains all the nutrients and vitamins necessary for the body of your four-legged friend for its full growth and development. Foods intended for puppies are high in calories, which means that the average serving size should be small to prevent overloading your pet’s sensitive stomach and entire digestive system.

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High-quality puppy food contains easily digestible proteins and all minerals necessary for your pet’s body, including calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, iron and vitamin D. All of these ingredients help to strengthen the bones and teeth of your four-legged friend. Another advantage of specially formulated puppy food is that it does not need to be supplemented with any nutritional supplement unless there is a specific medical indication. PURINA has developed a range of products specifically designed for feeding puppies:

Keep in mind that puppies have small mouths, so small pads in dry food are easier for them to chew than large pads. In addition, puppies enjoy chewing and chewing on hard pads. this helps their teeth stay strong, clean and healthy.

You shouldn’t change your puppy’s diet often, as this may well provoke stomach problems for your pet. Therefore, try not to transfer your puppy to a different species or even brand of food without appropriate medical advice provided by your veterinarian. If you still need to make certain changes to the diet of your four-legged friend, see the appropriate section of this site dedicated to the transition from one type of food to another.

Shelf life of soaked feed

If dry food can simply be poured into a bowl and left. the dog will eat when it is hungry, then this is how much soaked dry food is stored?

Experts do not recommend keeping it soaked for too long. (What in this case is too much and what is not. no one can answer you. After all, as we said above, the feed manufacturer does not imply such manipulations with his products.) Therefore, prepare such a portion at a time so that the pet can eat it right away. The leftovers will need to be thrown away. Since, especially in hot weather, they can quickly deteriorate, and cause upset stomach and poisoning in your four-legged friend.

It is also not recommended to store food soaked in the refrigerator, as the moisture that gets in will gradually destroy their structure, and your pet is unlikely to want to eat “porridge”.

Do I need to soak dry dog ​​food?

Should dry dog ​​food be soaked? This question is of interest to many owners who have previously transferred their pets to “drying”. The talk that solid food pellets can injure the mucous surface of the gastrointestinal tract and provoke gastritis and even an ulcer in a dog frighten many responsible owners. But our today’s article will try to answer this and related questions, and clarify whether it is worth, why and how to soak dry dog ​​food.

We have talked about the benefits of a monotonous but balanced diet more than once. Feeding dry food has become, to a certain extent, a necessity for people living in large cities and are not ready to devote much time to compiling a balanced diet for their dog on their own. Nevertheless, there are opinions, or we can say doubts about whether it is possible to take and feed the pet with these dry crunches “just like that”? Is there a catch here? Dry dog ​​food may need to be soaked or not. Or vice versa. can dry food be soaked? Will it spoil the feed itself??

In general, there are many questions. let’s try to figure everything out in order.

When you need to do it?

When should dry dog ​​food be soaked? By “need” we mean the need to do this. So, in order:

  • The dog has problems with the oral cavity (see above), but she loves this food very much and refuses it very hard;
  • You have been advised to do this by a veterinarian on the basis of one or another individual diagnosis made to your pet;
  • You can do this for puppies;
  • The dog loves soaked food and cannot live without it

When you start feeding your pet with soaked food, do not forget about the following rules:

  • Follow the rules for brushing your dog’s teeth. If you do not brush her teeth for one reason or another, then at least supply your ward with functional treats.
  • It is impossible to leave dry food soaked for a long time, since no one will give you guarantees that certain pathogenic bacteria will not develop in the food. After all, the manufacturer of the food, releasing it, implies that you will feed your dog in a dry form.

How Much Water Does Your Dog Need??

By their nature, dogs are predators, so their diet should contain at least 80% water. Where did we get these numbers? The composition of meat contains just so much water, everything else is useful substances. An animal whose diet consists exclusively of dry food must consume the required amount of liquid in order to enable it to digest properly. If this does not happen, the dog drinks little or does not have access to unlimited water, he may have digestive problems.

In dry dog ​​food, the moisture level is no more than 10%. for us this is a signal that when feeding dogs only dry food, it is extremely important that you have access to a significant amount of water with food.

Is it possible or not?

Can dry dog ​​food be soaked? Yes you can! But let’s not rush to immediately run and do it. let’s look at the question rather from a position, and in what case do we really need it? In essence, eating food soaked or dry, but drinking it down with water, is almost the same thing. Except for the chewing process (contact with teeth and oral mucosa), as well as primary contact with the gastric mucosa.

Preparing A Dog’s Dinner By Soaking Their Food

For adult dogs

How to properly soak dry adult dog food? After we have learned whether it is necessary to soak dry dog ​​food. it is desirable to do this, we suggest that you familiarize yourself with the features of this procedure. How to properly soak dry food for adult dogs so that it does not lose its nutritional value and at the same time looks appetizing and suits your pet’s taste. find out right now.

  • Pour some water into a bowl of dry dog ​​food so that it covers the food and allow it to infuse and swell, and then offer it to your pet. At first, dogs are rather reluctant to sniff such food. soggy food does not smell so much, but once tasted, they eat it with pleasure.
  • It is very important to select the correct maceration water temperature. Veterinarians recommend pouring liquid no hotter than 35 degrees. And although at this temperature the food swells a little longer than if you poured boiling water over it, in this case the nutrients in it are not destroyed.
  • In order for the dog to eat more willingly the breakfast offered to her, you can warm it up a little.

When not necessary to soak?

As you know, the usual way of feeding a dog with dry food is to serve it naturally in a bowl of water. When do we continue to adhere to this approach?

  • The dog eats and drinks with appetite;
  • You do not observe any abnormalities in her mood, coat or gastrointestinal reactions;
  • Dogs have no problems with the oral cavity (teeth and gums are intact and there are no signs of damage. redness, bleeding, etc.).

Rules for soaking feed

Let’s go further. Since you still decided to soak the feed, then let’s figure out how to do it correctly.

Is soaking acceptable

There is an opinion that this can only be done if the package has the appropriate permission. In any other case, the liquid will dissolve the vitamins contained in the granules. However, veterinarians say that this is a myth: if necessary, you can safely soak any food. Some vitamins can actually dissolve faster, but, regardless of whether the dog ate regular or soaked croutons, they are still excreted from the body along with urine. this is inevitable.

The fact is that all vitamins contained in dry food are divided into fat-soluble: A, D, E, K and water-soluble: B, C, and all other vitamins that do not belong to the first group. Water-soluble vitamins are removed from the body faster, but at the same time they still have time to be absorbed, since they are first absorbed in the intestines, and then enter the blood.

It turns out that there is nothing wrong with soaking food, if such a need arises.

Instructions: how to soak properly

In order for dry food to become soft, just add water to it. In this case, you need to follow a number of simple rules:

  • the water temperature should not exceed 50 degrees;
  • the water should completely cover the granules;
  • add water 30-40 minutes before feeding: so much time is needed for the granules to swell.

If the feed needs to be made into a creamy soup, it is recommended to grind the granules in a blender before adding water.

The bowl should be washed before each feed, even if the puppy has thoroughly licked it. Dry food soaked in water is a more fertile ground for bacteria to spread.

It is not forbidden to soak the feed for a longer time. For example, you can pour dry granules in the evening and put them in the refrigerator until the morning when the next feeding period comes. However, do not leave a bowl of soaked food outdoors or in a warm room for a long time: raw food deteriorates much faster.

Puppies: When to Introduce Dry Food

At the beginning of their life, all babies feed on mother’s milk, and then liquid food. After two months, you can transfer your pet to solid food. It is during this period that it is recommended to feed the puppy with soaked foods. Gradually, you can add croutons to them, each time increasing the proportion of their presence in the bowl. Over time, the dog will completely switch to solid food, and his body will get used to digest it without stress.

In addition, do not forget that puppies are teething in the first 1.5-3 months of life. There is a widespread belief that it is easier for a puppy to relieve itching during teething if he chews on dry food and “scratches” his gums on it. However, the hard granules can damage the puppy’s mouth. It is much more important that he gets the amount of nutrients he needs without discomfort. It is worth completely transferring the puppy to solid food only after the final change of teeth.

Some puppies refuse to eat dry food even if they transition gradually. In this case, you can spread the dry granules on a flat surface and spray them with water from a spray bottle. The smell of the food will become stronger and will whet the pet’s appetite.

A natural question arises: to what age should you soak dry food for a puppy? No veterinarian will give an unambiguous answer, since this value is due to the individual characteristics of the puppy‘s body, as well as the level of its metabolism.

Adult dogs: soak or not

Before answering this question, it is worth clarifying whether it is possible to constantly feed the dog only with dry food.

There are two types of dog food: dry food and natural food. In the first case, the dog gets all the nutrients and vitamins from the pelleted food. In the second, you will need to prepare food for the dog yourself, carefully selecting and weighing the products. Depending on the feeding method, the puppy’s digestive system is formed, therefore it is not recommended to use both types of food together. The owner decides on his own which way of feeding to choose, but a veterinarian’s consultation will not be superfluous.

  • Saving time. No need to spend it on finding and preparing dog-friendly food.
  • Quality assurance. Granules contain a balance of all nutrients and vitamins necessary for the correct development and functioning of the dog’s body.
  • The key to health. With dry food, the dog receives the entire vitamin and mineral complex, which would have to be purchased additionally in the case of natural feeding.
  • Material benefit. Even premium food will be cheaper than quality natural food alternatives.
  • Convenience. Crackers can easily be taken with you on the road if you have a trip, or even for a picnic in the park.

It is important to remember that on such a diet, you must drink a lot of water.

Dog weight x 20 mg = minimum amount of water per day Dog weight x 70 mg = maximum amount of water per day

Based on this formula, a dog weighing 10 kg should drink 200 to 700 ml of water. This amount is influenced by the temperature, activity of the pet, as well as the individual characteristics of his body.

So, in the heat, you need to try to give the dog more water so that the natural heat exchange is not disturbed.

Despite all of the above benefits, there are situations in which food needs to be soaked:

  • the dog has damage to the mouth, teeth, or throat;
  • on the advice of a veterinarian;
  • if the dog refuses to eat dry pellets, but loves them in a framed form.

Some dogs do not wash down their meals with the required amount of water, and then digestive problems can occur. Soaked feed in this case will help solve them.

Whether to soak dry food for a dog and a puppy: how to properly and until what age

Dog nutrition is a topic of concern to all conscientious breeders. In this article you will find the answer to the question whether it is possible and necessary to soak dry food for puppies, in which cases it is relevant.

How to soak dry food?

Contrary to popular belief, you can only soak dry food for puppies and adult dogs with water. Neither milk, fermented milk products, nor broth are suitable for this purpose, as the nutrients contained in these liquids can upset the balance of the feed and harm the pet’s digestive system.

In addition, it is important to maintain an acceptable water temperature in which the feed is soaked. For example, boiling water should not be used as it can destroy some of the vitamins in the feed.

How long the soaked food is stored?

It is recommended to soak dry granules before each feeding. There is simply no point in doing this for future use, since it is impossible to store food soaked in water for more than 12 hours. If, nevertheless, the portion was calculated incorrectly and there is excess food left, it should be refrigerated until the next feeding.

It is important to remember that water will increase the total feed volume, so the dog will be satiated faster. In order for the pet to fully receive its daily food intake, it will have to be fed more often.