When you shop for puppy food, you'll find hundreds of different foods to choose from. It can get a little overwhelming as you're faced with a sea of brands, but remember, NOT all puppy food delivers equal nutritional benefits.
While it would be too complicated to compare each brand of pet food available in your local grocery store, at the super centers, and online, we can explain a few fundamentals that you can use to help you make a good selection.
Puppy Food vs. Adult Dog Food
Puppy food and regular dog food are not the same. Puppy food is specifically designed to meet the nutritional needs of puppies. Puppies grow at a rapid rate, therefore, they require twice the daily nutrients of adult dogs.
A puppy's bones, joints, muscles, and internal organs are growing, so they need a well-balanced puppy food to meet their nutritional needs. Puppy food is higher in fat than adult formulas, which is why it is not recommended for adult dogs, who can experience health issues if they eat diet too high in fat.
Once the puppy finishes growing, they are better off with regular adult dog food. When is a puppy ready to transition to adult dog food? Assuming the puppy does not have any weight issues, usually around one year.
What is the best puppy food?
- Dry puppy food because it has the most meat protein.
- Dry puppy food because it keeps teeth clean.
- A combined diet of dry dog food with moist dog food.
- Semi-moist is another option because it's easily digested, but it doesn't have the same dental benefits as dry food and it can be expensive.
- Dog foods with ingredients you recognize and can read are usually higher-quality.
- The more expensive brands usually have better ingredients.
Pet owners beware: semi-moist dog food has been linked to hyperactivity and obesity in dogs due to its high concentration of salt, sugar, and preservatives. So, be sure to read ingredients labels carefully.
To find out which type of food is best for your puppy, reach out to a local veterinarian!