Bringing a Labrador Retriever into a home can come with many questions, not the least of which is how much or how little to feed it.
With serving sizes varying based on the food in question, the size of the dog and any special needs that might be present, picking just the right amount to maintain health can be a task.
It is always a very good idea to get serving size and food type recommendations from a veterinarian especially if there seems to be an issue with a dog weighing too little or too much.
Advice is particularly smart to seek out in the case of a Labrador retriever puppy, a pregnant or nursing female lab, an older dog or a sick one. There are some generalizations, however that can be made based upon the dog’s age and size.
Growing puppies generally require more calories and a slightly different food composition than mature labs.
In general, puppies should be fed twice a day, according to dog food instructions, from the age of eight weeks on. There are different recommendations for younger puppies.
Around the three-month mark, the teething process will be very much under way. As this takes place, the puppy’s appetite might shrink a little. Don’t worry too much unless he doesn’t eat at all.
Continue puppy food throughout the first year, but it’s generally okay to cut back to one serving a day after about nine months. Recommendations on when to switch fully to adult dog food will vary, depending on size.
Larger dogs tend to require puppy food through year two. Some vets will require puppy food continue through to the second year no matter the breed or size.
Dogs that have reached the two-year birthday mark are generally considered adults. They might still act like puppies, but they are not and they no longer need to eat quite as much.
In most cases, adult dogs require food only once a day. Some breeds will, however, require food twice a day. Considering this, in most cases its recommended that a dog owner obtain advice from a veterinarian on exactly how much to feed a particular breed and how many times a day.
In most cases, it is also suggested that dogs be fed the same food at the same times each day to establish a routine that promotes healthy digestion.
Older Labrador Retrievers
Just like puppies, older dogs have special nutritional needs.
It is generally suggested that senior dogs eat foods blended to offer the right balance of nutrients and calories. Generally, older labs require only one meal a day.
The amount will vary depending on the size of an individual dog and the type of food thats being served.
Feeding dogs the right food in the right amounts is one of the best things an animal lover can do to ensure their best friend stays healthy.
While there are some general rules of thumb on serving sizes and types of food to feed, its generally best to seek out a vets advice if questions arise.