I've been using the search function to try and find info on puppy feeding and the search return is MASSIVE. Poking around I'm not finding what I'm looking for, which is some general (not brand specific) puppy feeding guideline information. Specifically - what % of protein, fat & fiber is recommended for a lab puppy? What is too much? What is not enough?
I fed Piper Premium Edge LB Puppy with good results - switching over to adult food put us on a long rollercoaster ride finding a food she did well on. The Premium Edge adult formula simply was not cutting it, the allergy related itching and licking was under control but her coat was a wreck (dull, dry, blowing out). Now she's thriving on California Natural L&R so I'd like to consider feeding our new puppy (coming home this Saturday, yet unnamed) the California Natural Puppy food in order to stick with one brand for both dogs, but I'm not sure if the nutrition profile is appropriate.
California Natural L&R Puppy
Protein 26.0 %
Fat 16.0 %
Fiber 2.5 %
Moisture 10.0 %
Calories 1931 Kcal/lb
Calories 4247 Kcal/Kg
Calories 591 KCals/Cup
Note: the breeder recommended Purina Puppy Chow for Piper when she came home and I wasn't happy with the quality of the food. It's likely she'll make the same recommendation with this new pup and I'll not heed it this time either. I do understand a gradual change is necessary and will bring the dog home on the breeder recommended food, but if it's a low quality food I don't see myself feeding it long term.
TIA for the help anyone can offer.
~Michelle~<br />I Love my Piper & her lil' sis Cassie & My Twinkies<br />
The protien seems OK from what I have read... I am not an expert, but I give my puppy 1/2 Solid Gold wolf cub and 1/2 Innova large breed puppy formula... Multiple foods mixed seems OK for Thunder and I believe the mixture balances out the positives and the negatives of the two quality puppy foods... FYI, I believe the calcium and phosphorus % are more important than protien content (unless very excessive) if you are concerned with joint issues...
I think California Natural is a great food. I feed something very similar. 26% protein is just the right amount for a puppy.
Not all Lab owners agree that a Large Breed Puppy formula is best for the first year but from past reactions, the majority do.
Scientific nutritional studies for the last 10-20 years have been almost unanimous in advising specific low levels of Calcium and ratio to Phosphorus for Large Breed puppies to prevent joints from maturing too quickly.
Labs are among the "larger breeds" that have a lot of joint problems -- about one of every 3 dogs among Labs become afflicted.
Joint problems are caused primarily by 3 mutually interacting factors:
-- stress, injury, such as caused by jumping, leaping especially before adulthood
-- genetics such as caused by breeders not having their breeding dogs certified for hips & joints AND not checking for that in the pedigree line -- in short, puppy mills, backyard breeders, scam breeders
-- diet such as caused by feeding a large breed puppy a food that is not specially formulated for large breed puppies; a LBP food controls the amount of calciumhosphorus delivered
Once you have your Lab, you CAN fairly much control the activities that could cause stress or injury AND you can absolutely control the diet your Lab gets. Doing both of those lessens the probability that your Lab will develop joint problems.
Below are a few references on the importance of feeding a Large Breed Puppy food for the first year. The references are from a post I've made so often that I just recopy it.
My very strong preference -- for all Lab puppies under a year old -- is to feed a Large Breed (formulation) Puppy Food. Among popular widely available brands are Diamond, Eukanuba, Nutro Natural Choice, ProPlan, & Science Diet, etc., for the reasons given in the articles below:
This (just below) is a technical article (but readable) that summarizes
many of the canine nutritional and growth studies:
Within it, it contains this statement and references:
"The scientific literature is very clear on nutritional changes to "help
manage" the potential orthopedic problems in growing large and giant
breed dogs. Here are a few citations for you. As you can see from the
dates on these citations, it is “old” news to vets but pet owners and
breeders are still making dangerous recommendations."
1. Nap, et al. Growth and skeletal development in Great Dane pups fed
different levels of protein intake. J Nutr 1991; 121:S107-S113.
2. Hedhammer, et al. Over nutrition and skeletal disease: an
experimental study in growing Great Dane dogs. Cornell Vet 1974;
3. Lavelle. The effect of overfeeding of a balanced complete commercial
diet to a group of growing Great Danes. In: Nutrition of the dog and
cat. Burger and Rivers (eds). Cambridge Univ Press, 1989:303-316.
4. Hazewinkel, et al. Influences of chronic calcium excess on the
skeletal development of growing Great Danes, J Am Anim Hosp Assoc 1985;
5. Goedegebuure, Hazewinkel. Morphological findings in young dogs
chronically fed a diet containing excess calcium. Vet Pathol 1986;
6. Hazewinkel, et al. Calcium metabolism in Great Dane dogs fed diets
with various calcium and phosphorus levels. J Nutr 1991; 121:S99-S106.
Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]
Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
Actually, I wouldn't combine two different foods. Each food is balanced for itself - you are just throwing the balance off by combining the two. Find one food you like and stick with it. Solid Gold is an excellent food. I also just switched to Canidae (several of my breeder friends use it) and my dogs are doing great on it - very good ingredients at a very good price. My breeder friend feeds it to her pups and adults (same food - All Stages) although they did just come out with a Lamb & Rice.