I just adopted a “puppy” from a rescue. We aren’t exactly sure the breed, he is a lab mix but we don’t know what he is all mixed with. And they estimated him around a year old. Now that he is home, he seems to have a lot of puppy traits and did gain 5 pounds in about two weeks, so we aren’t sure how old he is. The shelter told us that we could switch him to adult food after he finished the mix of adult and puppy that they sent him home with. I have been researching online and it seems that dogs, especially large breed should be on puppy food for longer. So now I am completely confused what I should be looking for for him. Because I had to get food I got a bag that was highly recommended for labs, but I don’t like it that much and want to switch it, but I don’t know if I should be doing puppy food, a mix of puppy and adult or what I should be doing.
Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!!
I hope that you find this site helpful
Also, find a vet that you like and trust go in for routine checkups, an initial evaluation.
Go from there.
Congrates on your rescue puppy,
look at “Wellness Complete Health Puppy Formula & “Wellness Core Puppy”
“Canidae” Turkey Meal & Brown Rice Large Breed Puppy
Thank you both for your replies and suggestions. My next question. Should he still be on puppy food and if so how long. We have always done it up to a year and then transitioned to adult food but then u read that may be too soon and large puppies should have puppy food up to two years.
Again, I defer to the veterinarian that has examined your pet, he can give you the best estimate of age and nutritional requirements for your dog.
Did you read the article (link) I sent you?
That’s the best advice you will get from a veterinarian that has NOT examined your dog.
I for one don’t bother with “puppy food” and go straight to adult.
The large breeds puppies needing this and that is a new thing. Discuss with your vet.
PS: “The shelter told us that we could switch him to adult food after he finished the mix of adult and puppy that they sent him home with”.
Sounds like sage advice.
Fromm Classic Adult is a good food (my vet agrees) https://www.gofromm.com/fromm-family-classic-adult-dog-food
Add a topper ( a tablespoon of canned food or cooked chicken or scrambled egg) and a splash of water and you’re good to go!
Always have fresh water available 24/7
Oh, and please do not free feed (leave food down all day) that would explain the rapid weight gain, not good. Two meals per day, measured amounts, and an occasional snack is enough.
Exercise, start walking every day! Start brushing the teeth once a day, check YouTube for how to videos.
Here’s a good article about why puppies should be fed as puppies, large breed puppies as large breed puppies, and adults as adults. All have different nutritional needs with large breed nutrition adding focus to specific Ca/P ratios to help avoid serious health issues later in life. This knowledge about large breed nutrition, with research to back it up, has been known for well over 30 years.
Hopefully our large breed enthusiasts will stop by with more info for you. The link to the article is at the bottom of this post. Here’s a few Q & A’s from it:
“Q: What are the recommendations of veterinary nutritionists for switching pups and growing dogs onto adult maintenance diets?
A: Dietary requirements of puppies differ from those of adult dogs. Mostly, they have different requirements for amino acids and for vitamins and minerals, especially calcium and phosphorus, which are required for bone growth, and Of course, puppies also have a higher calorie requirement than adult dogs of a similar size — pups simply burn more energy!
The standard recommendations are to feed a diet with a Nutritional Adequacy Statement indicating that it is appropriate for growing puppies or for all life stages (this information is required to be on the label); if the complete and balanced claim was substantiated by the formulation method, the statement will also indicate if the diet is adequate or not for puppies expected to be > 70 lb adults. Diets that have successfully passed feeding trials as indicated by the Nutritional Adequacy Statement will not include the breed size distinction.
Regardless, an appropriate diet for growth should be fed until the dog reaches approximately 80% of the anticipated adult size. This generally occurs by 12 months of age for small and medium-breed dogs, and by 18-24 months for large and giant-breed dogs. Current conventional recommendations are to feed growth diets until this time, but feeding such a diet for a longer period will not be harmful. Care should be taken to ensure the dog maintains an ideal (lean) body condition, so keep in mind that growth diets may be fairly energy dense and could contribute to unwanted weight gain.
Q: Is it necessary to feed puppies “puppy food” and adult dogs “adult maintenance food?”
A: Yes – puppies have distinct nutritional needs. However, checking the Nutritional Adequacy Statement on the label is the best way to determine if the diet is appropriate for the specified life stage. Some foods marketed as maintenance diets based on the name or other front panel information are appropriate for “all life stages” as specified by the Nutritional Adequacy Statement on the back or side of the package.” ~ Jennifer A. Larsen, DVM, PhD, DACVN
More info in the full article here. Good luck with your pup!
Thank you again! I really appreciate it. I have read all of the articles and I found a vet that I really like. He didnt really comment as to whether or not he is full grown. We said we switched to a fully adult diet and he seemed to agree with it. We do only feed twice a day. He has been back to visit the vet to get comfortable there. That’s how we got the second weigh in. The vet seems to think most of the weight is from him gaining muscle since coming home. He said he is in no way overweight.
Thank you again for all of the advice. I had figured this all out for my last pup but he was a small breed and I didn’t expect to have to do it again so I’m A bit overwhelmed as this all happened to fast that I wasn’t prepared with my food research
like I would have liked to be
From your description it sounds like there’s a good chance he’s past the puppy stage. Sounds like you’re all set. Again, good luck lab mixes are one of the best breeds!! 😉
Maybe this will help:
We feed our puppy Gosbi
Gosbi sounds like a boutique food.
“Spoke to my vet the other day and his advice was to stay away from small companies, boutique, grain free. They are more inclined not to hire veterinary nutritionists or do feeding trials and testing as they should”.
PS: Adorable puppy
Gosbi is just a new name for exclusive, which has been around forever.
I’m not trying to publish them or something, I just know my puppy preferred them over other brand names.
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