Transitioning Your Dog to Adult Food

Your puppy turns into an adult dog in the blink of an eye. Alongside a change in activity, a change in diet is necessary to keep them adventurous and healthy. But how do you decide when it’s right to make the transition, and what’s the best plan of action?

Here are a few things we think you should consider.

When to Switch

When your pup has fully grown, you can begin the transition into adult food.

Smaller breeds mature faster than larger breeds. For example, a dog weighing 30-50 pounds might take anywhere from 10-12 months to reach maturity, while dogs weighing 50-100 pounds could take up to two years. If you need help determining whether you dog's fully grown, just ask your veterinarian.

Slow and Gradual Change

Like us, dogs thrive on routine. So create a gradual transition to prevent stress and digestion issues.

It can take 7-10 days to get your pet comfortably acquainted with their new food. Keep the same bowl in the same place to keep the environment consistent. Use the rule of fourths by gradually mixing the puppy and adult food. For example, you might start with 75% puppy food and 25% adult food on the first day. After a few days, change the ratio to 50% of each until your dog reaches 100% adult food. Then reward your dog with a treat or a high-five: They made it!

Evolving Nutritional Needs

Dogs become more susceptible to health issues as they age, so it’s essential to provide them with the best nutrition. A couple things to keep in mind:

  • While puppies have no problem burning off calorie-dense food, older dogs are more susceptible to weight gain, so their food should have an optimal balance of protein, fat, and calories to maintain proper body condition and weight.
  • As your dog ages, their immune system weakens, so they need vitamins and essential trace minerals to support key body functions such as immune response.

Choosing the Right Recipe

No matter your dog’s breed, our stores carry nutritious products with complete and balanced recipes to help transition your dog into a healthy adulthood. We have Nutrena brand Loyall Life and True products sure to fit your dog's evolving needs, and our friendly staff is eager to take care of you today. Call or stop in anytime!



NOTE: This post is adapted (with permission) from content proudly brought to you by our partners at Nutrena and Cargill Animal Nutrition. The original article appears here.

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