Table of Contents
Preparing the Kibble
The best nutrition for your puppies can be found in the kibble you choose. Puppies come in a smaller size than adults, but it may still be too large for some pups. The next step is to grind the kibble.
• Using a food processor, grind the kibble to a grainy powder. • Begin adding it to baby cereal mix by gradually substituting more of it for the dry cereal, essentially replacing the cereal in an effort to get the puppies solely on kibble and water. • Once the puppies are eating the kibble mix, you can offer them whole kibble that has been soaked in warm water for a couple of hours. It’s important to make sure all the pups have cut their first teeth before you proceed with this step. • If the puppies do well eating the soaked kibble, you can eventually begin adding less water and soaking it for shorter periods until the puppies are finally eating dry kibble and drinking fresh water. Weigh the pups each day to make sure they continue to gain weight and grow. • Marchstone Labradors suggests a ‘formula’ of around 100g of good quality puppy kibble, soaked overnight in warm water, then blitzed to a porridge consistency in a blender. This is sufficient for one meal for an average sized litter of Labrador Retriever puppies. You should adjust the ‘formula’ based on the size and number in your litter. • If all goes well, offer the pups a porridge meal four times a day.
Follow the tried and true. Do’s and don’ts are needed for a successful start.
There is a Don’t give the puppies cow’s milk. According to the dog food advisor, many puppies are unable to digest Lactose and will develop GID. There is a If the puppies are slow to catch on, make the gruel more watery. There is a Don’t leave food unattended on hot days. It’s better to offer less than you need and replace it with fresh food every few hours. There is a Keep an eye on the puppies’ poop. It’s a sign that you’re taking things too quickly. If the pups seem well and the mother is still feeding them, then take things back to the beginning. If their tummies don’t settle in a day or two, see a vet. If a puppy is quiet and withdrawn, it’s time to see a vet. There is a Keep an eye out for signs of snoozing in the pups. If the puppy seems well, try gently syringing water into their mouth, this will help the hard fecal matter to pass. To give the pup a chance to swallow so he doesn’t inhale fluid into his lungs, be careful not to flood his mouth. If the pup stops eating, it’s time to see a vet. There is a Make sure the pups are getting a chance to eat. Some may push others out of the way as the pups grow stronger. It is possible to prevent this by providing several feeding stations.
Teaching Puppies to Lap
The puppies are being taught to lap. They have only sucked, so lapping is a new skill.
The puppies will discover and experiment with less water. A shallow water pan is more inviting for the pup to drink from. There is a Adding ice cubes to a shallow water dish encourages pups to play and investigate the water. There is a Try dipping a finger in dog food to get the attention of the pup. Allow the finger to rest on the surface of the water. As the pup attempts to suck your finger, he will encounter the water and begin to experiment with licking. There is a The pup will lap rather than suck if you hold your finger below the water. There is a Some pups learn to lap quicker when something tasty is involved, such as submerging your finger in a watery cereal mix.
Tempt the Pups With Watery Food
Liquid feeds can be offered after the puppies are taught to lap water. From three to four weeks you can offer sloppy foods that are easy to eat. These include:
There is a Puppy milk replacers include Lactol, Welpi or Royal Canin Babydog milk. The same makeup of a female dog’s milk is used in these. The puppies will lap and drink from the shallow bowl. There is a You can make baby cereals with either water or puppy milk replacer. There is a Adding water or milk to the canned puppy food will make it soup-like.
Start with a sloppy wet mix to give the puppy time to adapt to the new source of food. Puppies that take a lot of food may overload their guts and develop CSD as a result, so take several days to make the soup thicker.
Once the pups are eating the consistency of pudding, it’s time to mix in puppy food. They will go through the final conversion to solid food. Marchstone Labradors are like many breeders who skip the cereal step and start with a porridge made of kibble. Either option is fine. Do you want to go with what feels right to you?
When to start feeding puppies wet food
When the puppies are eating solid dry food consistently and are no longer nursing from their mother, wet food can be introduced into their diet. Puppies can be introduced to wet food around 8 weeks of age. If you are going to increase the amount of wet food you are giving to the puppies, you need to make sure there is no gastrointestinal upset.
Because wet food has a high moisture content, you may notice that the puppies drink slightly less water than they did when they were eating a solely dry food diet. This is normal and is not cause for alarm as long as the puppies remain well-hydrated.