Puppy to Adult: A Transition Guide

Puppy to Adult: A Transition Guide

Your puppy has its own unique personality and appearance; but it also has unique nutritional needs. As puppies mature, and become adult dogs, their nutritional needs will change and it’s important to feed them a diet that meets their new requirements.  But what exactly do they need, and when are they officially an adult dog?

Transitioning from puppy to adult, what do puppies need from a diet?

The nutritional needs of growing puppies are very different from those of adult dogs. Puppies need a diet with a higher energy and protein content, and the right balance of vitamins and minerals.

You should ensure you are feeding a complete and balanced puppy diet until your puppy reaches adulthood.

When does a puppy become an adult?

 The age at which your puppy becomes an adult dog will depend on its breed and size; with smaller dogs reaching adulthood much sooner than large or giant breed dogs. Your puppy will become an adult dog at the following ages:

  • X-small breed (adult bodyweight 4kg): 8 months
  • Small breed (adult bodyweight 5 – 10 kg): 10 months
  • Medium breed (adult bodyweight 11 – 25kg): 12 months
  • Large breed (adult bodyweight 26 – 44kg): 15 months
  • Giant breed (adult bodyweight 45kg and up): 18 to 24 months

If you are unsure when your puppy will become an adult, please speak to your vet who will be able to advise you.

Why do you need to switch to an adult diet?

 Adult dogs don’t have the same nutritional requirements as puppies. An adult dog’s nutritional needs depend on factors including their size, breed, activity levels and whether they’ve been neutered.

Puppy food is energy dense and if you continue to feed this to your adult dog, they may consume too many calories, and become overweight.

Feeding a complete and balanced diet can help your dog to maintain their ideal weight and shape.

Which diet should I feed?

 At Royal Canin we understand that every dog is unique and so is the nutrition they need. All our diets are complete and balanced; with each formula created to provide nutrition tailored to meet your dog’s needs; whatever their breed, age, size or lifestyle.

ROYAL CANIN® BREED HEALTH NUTRITION range offers tailored health nutrition, by providing adapted nutrition to support key breed related characteristics such as a unique coat or musculature. Breed Nutrition also features uniquely adapted kibble, tailored not only to the dog breeds size but also its facial morphology and appetite.

The ROYAL CANIN© Size Health Nutrition range addresses each size to cater to your dog’s nutritional needs from extra small to giant! From a 3 kg Papillon and a 90 kg Mastiff, different-sized dogs have very different nutritional needs.

 ROYAL CANIN® CANINE CARE NUTRITION diets are formulated to provide optimum nutrition to support several common sensitivities found in adult dogs, including weight, skin, coat and digestive health.

How do I change my dog’s diet?

 Once your puppy reaches adulthood, you can start to transition them onto their adult diet. You can also move from feeding 3 meals a day to feeding 2 meals a day. We recommend introducing their new diet slowly, as this will help to reduce any digestive upsets.

Day 1-2: Feed 25% of the new diet with 75% of the previous diet

Day 3-4: Feed 50% of the new diet with 50% of the previous diet

Day 5-6: Feed 75% of the new diet with 25% of the previous diet

Day 7: Feed 100% of the new diet

You may need to extend these transition stages depending on how well your dog responds.

Top tips for feeding

  • To ensure an accurate daily food portion, weigh your pet’s food using digital scales
  • Treats/extras/rewards should make up no more than 10% of an adult dog’s daily calorie allowance
  • Wet food could be used as an alternative to extras. The ROYAL CANIN© ranges offer both dry and wet food, which helps support mixed feeding.
  • Use interactive feeders and slow down bowls to slow down greedy eaters and provide mental stimulation.

Blog sponsored by The ROYAL CANIN©