Well, I'm here to tell you that we have been conditioned "wrong" in many instances.
The truth is...........puppy foods contain high levels of certain vitamins and minerals that your puppy needs. One of these minerals is: Calcium which builds healthy strong bones and teeth. However, your puppy doesn't need to be eating these high levels for nearly as long as the puppy food container states. The real motive here is "MONEY". Puppy food costs the consumer more and well... the longer your puppy eats the "puppy" food.........the more money the "pet food" company makes...bottom line!
Since I raise German Shepherds, a very large breed of dog, the issue of puppy food is very important to me and to those I have sold puppies to. Why? Well, large breeds of dogs grow quickly and are prone to issues like hip and elbow displasia. From my research I have found that puppies that consume large prolonged amounts of calcium in their diets are more prone to these health issues. In fact, it's the leading cause and these health risks can be drastically reduced by shorting the period of time that your puppy eats a diet of puppy food.
HOW LONG IS LONG ENOUGH?
I asked my veterinarian this question on the first visit to her office with our first litter of puppies. The answer was strongly, "Large breed puppies should start transitioning from puppy food to Adult Dog Food by AGE 16 WEEKS." Humm.. I thought, "Does this sound right?" Since I'm one to always check things out thoroughly, I started doing a little digging. I also asked several other veterinarians and they confirmed what she had told me. My research backed this up, so we started educating every new puppy owner that we sold a puppy to.
Then, I started thinking, "Maybe I should keep one puppy from this first litter to monitor his development." This would afford me the opportunity to verify for myself all the new and important information that I was learning about large breed dogs. It would also help me as a breeder to raise the healthiest German Shepherd puppies that I possibly could and then, in turn, I could share what I've learned with others, including all of our new puppers owners.
Since then we have raised several litters of AKC German Shepherd puppies, NONE HAVE EVER HAD ANY HIP OR ELBOW DISPLASIA! All have been born healthy and alive. We've never lost even one pup even in the extremely cold winter climate that we live in. All are healthy with no genetic defects or health problems. Why? It all comes down to..........the proper nutrition and care.
What brand of puppy food do I personally feed and recommend. Any of those brands that I mentioned in last weeks blog: Blue, Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul, Diamond Naturals(except beef flavor). There are obviously others, but these three rank high in all time favorites for balanced nutritional value and are relatively reasonable in price. Cherrybrook.com carries these brands at a very competitive price.
"CLICK" on the banner at the top or bottom of this page to review their products or prices.
or "CLICK" on the BlueBuff.com link in the Google Ads portion in the lower part of this page.
*Some smaller puppy breeds aren't so prone to the conditions that I've discussed here, so please check with your own veterinarian for his/her recommendations on when to transition over to adult food.
Raising healthy, happy canines does take quite a bit of education. That's why I decided to write this blog... to share what I've learned with you dog lovers, so that you may have years of happiness with your favorite canine friends. Wouldn't you agree... they deserve it? :)
PLAY : "WHAT BREED IS THIS?"
Each week I'll post a picture of a specific AKC Registered Dog Breed. See if you know it's name and leave your answer in the comment post. The answer will be posted on next week's blog post...
This one is easy.... it is the Number 1 Top Favorite dog breed registered by the AKC in 2008.
**If you would like to share with our readers a picture of your dog or puppy please email or snail mail me a photo. I will be starting to post pics next week on a weekly basis, depending on the quanitiy of photos that I receive. My email address is: firstname.lastname@example.org