Learn the guidelines to feed puppies a species appropriate raw meat diet
Starting your puppy on raw requires two changes to the typical raw feeding requirements for adult dogs. They require more food and more meals throughout the day to sustain a healthy growth period, that’s it! Monitoring a growing puppy’s body condition is crucial – it is the best way to determine if your puppy is eating too much or not enough.
Raise a Healthy, Happy Puppy on Raw
Puppies can eat raw just like an adult can, no matter the age or breed. Providing proper nutrition when feeding a growing puppy is very important to ensure your puppy grows as healthy as can be. Slow growth is best for a puppy, contrary to popular belief. On average, people tend to want their puppies to grow fast into the biggest and healthiest puppy around; but this is the opposite of what you should do. Bone disorders begin in puppyhood and providing a balanced raw diet allows the puppy to grow slowly which ultimately avoids bone and joint issues.
Feeding PMR or BARF is a great way to provide a balanced calcium and phosphorous. Start off with poultry necks, wings, and feet – the bones in these cuts are soft and hollow. As your puppy grows larger you can introduce larger bones such as chicken thighs and legs.
Raw Feeding Amounts & Frequency
Puppies require higher maintenance percentages than adult dogs.
Additionally puppies should be fed more frequently throughout the day.
Although a puppy’s maintenance percentages and feeding frequencies are higher than an adult dog’s requirements, the recommended percentages for muscle meat, raw meaty bones, organs, and fruit/veggies remain the same for the diet option you choose for your puppy.
It is important to feed puppies fully balanced meals daily because they cannot regulate vitamins and nutrients like an adult dog can. If your puppy doesn’t eat all the food, that’s ok – weigh what is remaining and save to feed at the next feeding. If meals are continuously not being finished, you’ll need to decrease the percentage you’re feeding. It is important to keep a close eye on the puppy’s body condition during this period. Percentages and feeding schedules may need to be adjusted depending on the puppy’s requirements, these are starting guidelines.
Puppies are too young and small to have raw bones.
The same rules for feeding raw bones to adult dogs apply to puppies. Giving raw bones to puppies is totally safe when providing the appropriate size cuts for the size and age of the dog. Smaller bones are recommended to start with and work up to larger bones as your puppy grows. If you have a puppy you are weaning from the mother, raw grinds with bone mixed in is recommended in the beginning until the puppy can begin chewing whole foods.
Large and giant breed puppies should not be fed raw because it will effect their growth.
Large and giant breed puppies are no different than any other puppy. Like all puppy breeds, large and giant puppies need to grow very slow. This is to avoid developing joint and bone issues. Remember, each dog (and puppy) is different – the guidelines provided are just starting points. You must monitor your puppy’s body condition and growth very closely in their young lives. Adjust percentages and feeding schedules as needed.
Transition to Raw
Set your puppy up for success by feeding it a raw diet. By feeding raw you provide the puppy with the essential tools to develop and mature properly while building a strong immune system.