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ANSC 1403 Lecture Outline 2/19

Feeding Puppies Nursing period: First seven to ten days of life the newborn puppys eyes will remain closed yet during this time puppies double their birth weight and become increasingly more active Rule of thumb during nursing period each puppy in a litter should gain approximately its birth weight each week (the first week may be slightly less and the final weeks may be more Nursing puppies after birth A. first milk (colostrum) - will be high in antibodies and growth hormones - It is critical that he newborn puppy consume this colostrum in the first 24-72 hours after birth - Antibodies provide passive immunity and are necessary to temporarily protect the puppy from common canine diseases B. special attention - Nervous or inattentive dams may require attention to calm them and accept their new offspring - placing pups near nipples at feed time C. meeting the nutrient needs of the young puppy - Milk will meet all the nutrient needs - Until weaning, the mothers diet and milk from nursing is adequate for the puppy D. supplementation of milk - No other supplements are needed unless the female is not producing sufficient milk for the number of pups or the pups are orphaned - High calcium supplementation has been linked with osteochonrosis (inflammation of bone and cartilage) resulting in structural defects of bone

Weaning of Puppies: Six weeks of age

not unusual for puppies to begin to wean themselves at 3-5 weeks of age by 6 weeks of age, the puppies should be eating dog food almost exclusively

Between seven and eight weeks of age puppies should be ready to be placed into their new home ideal time within primary socialization (5-12 weeks)

Proper feeding and nutrition are essential are essential during this time period because puppies experience rapid growth and development during the first 6 months of life: The rate at which dogs grow and age that they reach maturity is dependent on breed and size Large and giant breeds attain mature size between 12-18 months Small and toy breeds, between 7-12 months Growth and development require high energy and quality protein during the first 6 months By the time a dog reaches maturity, birth weight has increased 40-50 folds

After the puppies are completely weaned A. change from mothers diet to a commercial puppy diet - Mothers lactation diet helps alleviate some of the stress from weaning - Switching to a high quality commercial puppy diet should be gradual over a 5-7 day period to prevent gastrointestinal distress B. palatable and well-balanced - Palatability is important to ensure high consumption - Homemade recipe can be expensive, time consuming and often deficient in nutrients - A commercial well balanced diet needs no supplements C. feeding the puppy - Establish routine eating habits feed the puppy in the same place at the same time each day

- offering human foods from the table is not recommended, may encourage begging; and creates a finicky eater

The Growing Puppy Pet food should be guaranteed to be nutritionally adequate for growth or for all stages of life as tested by the AAFCO protocol. Meeting the growing dogs nutrient needs nutrient needs are supplied by an increase in the quantity of the food the animal consumes

Important considerations because growing dogs need to consume greater quantities of food, the diets digestibility and energy density are important

Concerns with puppies and growing dogs: Have less digestive capacity Have smaller mouths Have smaller and fewer teeth than adults

Limited food consumption if the diet is poorly digestible or has low energy and nutrient density, a larger quantity must be consumed the limits of the dogs stomach may be reached before adequate nutrients and energy have been consumed

Long-term result Impaired growth Impaired muscle and skeletal development

Feeding Growing Dogs

Feed amounts of diet that will support: Normal and skeletal development A typical rate of growth for the dogs particular breed

Feeding for maximal growth rate can lead to: Increased number of fat cells Obesity later in life

Feeding moderately restricted levels of a well-balanced diet: Does not affect final body size and Will positively impact skeletal and muscular development

Growing dogs should have an ideal body condition (use Purina Body Condition System as a guideline) where the animal would be lean and well-muscled with their ribs easily felt but not seen. A properly balanced diet that is formulated for growth should not require supplementation and use of supplements that are provided in excess amounts to the puppy can have serious deleterious effects. For example, calcium and phosphorus, both important to bone development, should not be supplemented to commercial well- balanced diets because excess levels can lead to skeletal deformities, especially in large and giant breeds.

Feeding Strategy 5 to 6 months three to four pre-measured meals per day

6 to 12 months two meals per day 1 year dogs can be fed one or two meals per day; however most dogs, especially large breeds adapt best to two meals Smaller breeds discontinuation of puppy food is recommended at 1 year when they are physiologically mature Larger breeds pet food manufacturers recommend puppy food to large breeds until 2 years of age when they are physiologically mature. Large or giant dog breeders feel that feeding a puppy diet past the first year can lead to structural deformities