How to Choose the Right Food for Your Puppy

Also, if you are doing treat-based training with your pup, adjust the amount you feed at mealtime accordingly. Whenever training with treats, keep the treat as small as possible. Consider giving other types of treats to deepen the bond with your puppy. Healthy snacks like bits of carrot, green beans, or bell peppers give your puppy something to crunch without many calories. And remember, in your puppy’s mind, spending time with you is the best treat of all.

The best food for puppies contain high-quality versions of these ingredients that are appropriate for your dog’s digestive system. This puppy food by Grain Zero has no corn, soy or wheat and is easy to digest for puppies of almost all breeds. It is rich in DHA that is good for the brain and nervous system development. This food is also a good source of vitamins and essential fatty acids for puppies that keep them healthy and give them shiny fur and coat.

Even with its tried and true name, this puppy formula has made people take notice and take another look at what Purina is offering these days. If you want to be sure you are buying from a brand that cares about the health of your puppy as much as you do, JustFoodForDogs should be one of the first brands you look at. If you can afford this option, your puppy will be over the moon. You can also try this food as a supplement to your pet’s regular diet.

The formula also includes whole grains, fruits, and veggies. Like any new parent, you’re probably collecting advice on nutrition, toys, activities, pet insurance, and much more. Choosing the best puppy food for your furry pal is one of the most important choices you’ll make.

That means the tummy is tucked up when viewed from the side. We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products—learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission. Elizabeth Berry is a fact checker for The Spruce Pets and has three years experience copyediting and researching content for lifestyle publications. She has also written evergreen and SEO articles for digital and printed publications.

Feeding your puppy an appropriate diet that supports her growth and optimizes her health is not as hard as you might think. As long as you keep a few key things in mind when selecting your puppy’s diet, picking good food for a puppy is simple. This article was written by Arricca SanSone, a lifelong dog lover, who shares her home with two papillons who adore plush toys, snuggling, and barking at bunnies and delivery people. She is a health and lifestyle writer for Prevention, Country Living, Veranda, House Beautiful, PureWow, and many others. If you feel you can safely handle raw food and you are willing to assume the risks, talk to your veterinarian about transitioning to raw food when your puppy gets older. In the beginning, you might choose to offer a combination of cooked and raw foods to see how it works out.

A young dog carrying too much weight has an increased risk of orthopedic problems, due to stress on immature joints. Obesity can also lead to diabetes, diseases of the heart and other organs, and general lethargy. All of which in a more recent study found they have forever chemicals at high rates in more than half the brands recommended.

However, no individual dog food can be considered the healthiest. The foods we chose for this category are specially formulated for small breed dogs and contain healthy extras like omega fatty acids. Ollie’s chicken recipe includes chia seeds, carrots, peas, spinach, and blueberries, plus omega fatty acids from fish oil and cod liver oil. An all-meat diet won’t provide your dog with complete and balanced nutrition, but you can use a small amount of these foods as delicious meal toppers for your dog’s dry food. The same nutritional standards apply to dry and wet food, but comparing their labels isn’t apples to apples because wet food has more water content.

The food comes in a 4.5- or 15.5-pound bag, and the brand also offers a canned puppy formula, which our experts said can be great to mix into your dog’s kibble. Puppies have different nutritional needs than adult dogs, and senior dogs have their own nutritional considerations. Most dog food companies carry specially formulated puppy foods for each stage of a dog’s life, making it easier to narrow down your choices. If you are concerned about which is the best dog food for your dog’s life stage, consult your veterinarian to see what stage food is appropriate for your dog. This low-fat food has deboned chicken and chicken meal as its top ingredients, followed by carbohydrates like oatmeal, ground brown rice, and ground barley.

Despite pet food marketing that suggests that grain-free foods are better for dogs than grain-containing foods, there is no scientific evidence to support this claim. Concern over grain-free dog foods began in 2018, when several veterinary cardiologists began to notice unusually high numbers of non-genetic dilated cardiomyopathy in dogs. As of November 2022, approximately 1,400 cases of DCM in dogs have been reported to the FDA, up from several hundred cases since 2018. In its latest update, the FDA notes that this increase in reported cases does not indicate a definitive link between grain-free dogs and DCM in dogs. Generally, healthy foods meet the AAFCO’s nutritional requirements for complete and balanced nutrition and contain only high-quality ingredients.

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