light brown puppy happy outside in the grass
light brown puppy happy outside in the grass

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Is Your Puppy Ready for Adult Dog Food?

Your puppy’s nutritional needs will change as they grow into adulthood, but how do you know when your puppy is ready for adult dog food?

 

Plan to reexamine your puppy’s nutritional needs between 12 and 24 months of age (depending on breed size). Learn when to switch your puppy from their current food to an adult formula — and how to easily make the transition.

 

When to Transition from Puppy Food to Adult Dog Food 

Your puppy’s transition to adult food should begin when they approach adult height. Their breed type will also help determine when to switch, as will their size. For instance, small-breed dogs tend to mature physically much sooner than large-breed dogs.

 

Follow these guidelines to help you decide when to switch formulas:

  • Small-breed dogs that weigh 20 pounds or less when fully grown are usually ready to eat adult food at 9 to 12 months of age.
  • Medium-breed dogs that weigh between 20 and 50 pounds as adults normally mature at 12 to 14 months of age.
  • Large- and giant-breed dogs that weigh more than 50 pounds when fully grown might not be ready to switch to an adult food until they’re 12 to 24 months old.

 

IAMS puppy to adult dog food feeding schedule transition chart

 

How to Transition from Puppy Food to Adult Dog Food 

To avoid upsetting your dog’s intestinal tract or causing diarrhea, gradually make the change from a puppy formula to an adult diet over a period of four days by mixing the two foods in your dog’s bowl. Follow these guidelines:

  • Day one: Fill your dog’s bowl with 75% puppy food and 25% adult food.
  • Day two: Mix the adult and puppy food in a 50-50 ratio.
  • Day three: Feed your dog a mixture of 75% adult food and 25% puppy food.
  • Day four: Switch to 100% adult formula.

 

day 3 of puppy to adult dog food feeding schedule transition chart

Why Feed Your Dog a Premium Food? 

You know that quality counts, so you feed your puppy a premium food that provides balanced nutrition. What food should you choose when they grow into an adult?

 

Feeding them a high-quality adult food like IAMS™ Adult Minichunks will help them maintain the same superb nutrition they received as a puppy. In contrast, switching to a lower-quality brand at this stage of your dog’s life may upset their digestive system and won’t provide them with the same level of nutritional excellence they were raised on. Check out our Dog Food Selector to find the right food for your all-grown-up pup!

 

Premium adult dog foods like the ones we make at IAMS™ are specifically designed to provide your dog with:

  • High-quality ingredients that support whole-body health
  • Balanced levels of protein, fat, fiber, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals
  • Omega-6 fatty acids that help nourish and support your dog’s skin and coat

 

What does it all add up to? A happy, healthy dog.

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    lost dog escaping a yard

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    Could Your Dog Escape Your Yard? Here’s How to Secure It

    For some dogs, a simple fence isn’t enough to keep them in the yard. Maybe you’ve got a little escape artist that’s too smart for their own good. Maybe you’re raising a brave explorer who loves to get lost. Or maybe you’ve been unlucky enough to have your dog stolen from their own backyard. Creating a safe and secure space to keep your pet can be a challenge, but we’re here to help. Understanding the common reasons dogs get out and what you can do to prevent it from happening goes a long way toward keeping your furry friend safe.

     

     

    Why Does Your Dog Want to Escape?

    Securing your yard starts with understanding the impulses that drive your dog to see what’s beyond your property. Spaying or neutering is an important first step in curbing a dog’s desire to roam, but there may be other factors at play. Creating a safe yard for a lonely Labrador in search of a friend is an entirely different exercise than securing a burrow-happy beagle on the hunt for a squirrel. We’d recommend trying to learn as much as you can about your dog’s breed and underlying instincts. The most common reasons dogs try to escape are:
     

    • Feeling socially isolated
    • Lack of stimulation (think toys)
    • Desire to escape something that scares them, like thunder
       

    Countering these behaviors starts with understanding which one is at the heart of your dog’s desire to break free. Once you’ve got a theory of what’s motivating your pup, it’s time to give your safety measures a second look.

     

     

    How to Keep Your Dog Safe and Secure in Your Yard

    Microchip Your Dog and Scan Their Nose

    If your dog is committed to getting out, your most useful tool will be the ability to track and locate them wherever they’re found. There are a huge variety of products and services designed to help you keep your dog safe, but the most important thing you can have is a plan. You’ve most likely heard of GPS tracking chips that can be implanted in your pet, but you may not know that you can also scan their nose. Through a new app called NOSEiD, you can capture your dog’s unique nose print, which will give whoever finds them a faster, simpler way of reuniting the two of you. It’s that easy! Just download the app, call your pup over and start scanning.

     

     

    The Best Defense Is a Good … Fence

    Even though they’re not technologically impressive, a sturdy wooden or metal fence still plays an important part in protecting your dog while they’re in your yard. Not only does it keep your dog from wandering, it also keeps unwanted animals and people away from your dog’s space. If your dog can leap over it, you’ll obviously need to raise the height, or you can add an overhang that makes it harder to clear. You might also consider planting some shrubs along the inside of the fence to discourage jumping. If your dog is burrowing beneath your fence, consider adding a barrier beneath it or putting a bumper collar on them, which makes it harder to squeeze into small spaces.
     

    If you have a particularly territorial dog, you may want to cover any open spots in your fence that your dog might spy adversaries through. A solid fence may help them feel safe and diminish their need to patrol their surroundings.
     

    When it comes to electric fences, using one successfully depends on your dog’s personality. If your dog has recently been ignoring the electric fence, you may want to consider retraining them or investing in a physical barrier.

     

     

    Make “Yard” Mean “Yay!”

    Making your yard a dog-friendly and entertaining space is a huge part of keeping your dog safe at home. With enough toys, space to burn energy and ideally a friend to play with, your dog won’t have any reason to see if the grass is greener elsewhere. A few popular dog-pleasers you may want to provide are:
     

    • A bit of shelter or shade
    • A source of water
    • A rotating lineup of toys
    • Their favorite playmate (you)

     

     

    Use Your Yard Wisely

    Last, but not least, if you leave your dog unattended for a long period of time in your yard, there’s a good chance they will get bored and look for a way to burn off some energy. To prevent them from getting mischievous, limit the amount of time they’re out on their own, and check in frequently. Also, for dogs with separation anxiety or that may be afraid of loud noises, your presence will help keep them calm and close to home.
     

    With your dog chipped or their nose scanned, you’ll always have an option in the event that your dog strikes out on their own. Beyond that, understand what makes your dog unique and check your yard’s safety features regularly for holes or weak points. As usual, a little preparation now can save you a ton of time and energy in the long run.

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