Having more than one pet at home makes you feel good, but it can become a headache when it comes to mealtime. For example, you need different foods for puppy and adult dogs. Therefore, pet owners often ask, can adult dogs eat puppy food? We have given a short answer at the start and will answer this question in detail. So keep reading this article and don’t go anyway.
Can Adult Dogs Eat Puppy Food?
Yes, they can, and it’s perfectly safe for adult dogs to eat puppy food. Unfortunately, it’s not ideal to feed puppy food to adult dogs. The best approach is to feed your dog according to age. When we talk about puppy food, it’s formulated to help young dogs grow. Moreover, it’s vital to feed puppy food to them when they’re just transferred from mother’s milk.
Puppy food contains a higher percentage of calories, fats, and protein. Young puppies need all these for proper growth. On the other hand, feeding this type of food to adult dogs isn’t wise because they have already grown to their ideal height. Moreover, they receive extra protein, calories, and fats.
Is There Any Risk of Health Problems?
Yes, feeding puppy food to adult dogs can result in many issues, and weight gain is the first one. When dogs eat food rich in fats, they gain excessive weight, and it leads to other health issues. General mobility difficulties, joint issues, and diabetes are the major issues caused by weight gain.
For pickier dogs, vets recommend keeping them on puppy food for a long time period or even permanently. But it happens rarely and only when the vet recommends it. This practice is only recommended for underweight dogs and especially when they’re transforming gradually from puppy to adult dogs.
When Should You Consider Feeding Puppy Food to Adult Dogs?
As mentioned at the start, you can feed puppy food to adult dogs in some situations, and it can also be beneficial. But you need to consult your vet before making any changes in diet. You can consider puppy food for adult dogs in the following situations:
Pregnancy and Weaning
During pregnancy, dogs require more energy. There are two reasons for feeding puppy food to adult pregnant dogs. The first one is it helps puppies to grow and nourish properly. Bones, muscles, and other body parts get nutrients and energy from the mother. The mother also needs lots of energy during the pregnancy for walks and play sessions. Therefore, it’s recommended to feed a diet rich in calories, fats, and proteins during this time.
When mothers feed milk to puppies, they also need the energy to continue milk production for several weeks. As you know, when puppies get high-quality milk, they will be stronger and healthier. Therefore, puppy food can benefit both mothers and puppies during pregnancy and even after birth.
When dogs suffer from illness or injury, they become weak. Moreover, the weakness increases when they get older. Remember, puppy food can’t help every dog overcome weakness because older dogs have different requirements from puppies and adult dogs. But for older dogs, a low-fat diet can do the trick because they don’t need much energy. But before making any decision, it’s essential to consider your pet’s individual needs.
Higher percentages of calories, calcium, protein, and fats in puppy food can help adult dogs quickly recover from illness and injuries. Puppy food is ideal for growth, recovery, and energy. Remember; don’t experiment with their nutrition much when pets are ill or injured. Follow the vet’s advice or recommendation.
As mentioned earlier, underweight dogs can take advantage of puppy food. But again, you need to be careful about excessive weight gain. Weight gain foods contain elevated calcium levels, but they can be dangerous for pets. They can result in increased drinking and urination, listlessness, loss of appetite, and weakness.
Using this type of food for a long time can cause the formation of kidney stones. So, before feeding this type of food for weight gain, it’s essential to consult the vet for expert advice.
How Long Do You Need to Feed Puppy Food to Puppies?
Until the puppies reach maturity, they need a completely balanced diet. When dogs get one year old, people start to consider them adults, but it’s not always true. Adulthood in dogs depends on their breed size. Large dog breeds take time to reach maturity; therefore, you need to feed puppy food to them for longer times.
- Small and toy dog breeds reach maturity when their age is between 9 and 10 months.
- Medium-sized dog breeds reach maturity when their age is 12 months.
- Large and giant dog breeds can take up to 18 to 24 months to reach maturity. Therefore, you need to feed puppy food to them for a longer time.
If you’re not sure whether your dog has reached maturity or not, consult your vet to make the best decision about their food. Another thing that can help you is to monitor their food consumption. When puppies leave more food in the bowl, it means they need fewer calories.
Can Adult Dogs Eat Puppy Food? One should have been clear that yes, you can feed puppy food to adult dogs under certain conditions. Puppies and adult dogs have different nutritional needs; therefore, you need to feed your dog according to age. As mentioned above, when your dogs stop growing and reach maturity, stop feeding puppy food to adult dogs and feed a balanced and nutritious diet to your adult pet. If you want to ensure that your pet remains healthy, consult an expert vet before making any changes in the dog’s food.