Puppy Nutrition and Dentition

Like human babies, puppies also have early teeth. Whether you like calling them baby teeth, deciduous teeth or first teeth, those small yet sharp pieces of cute teeth are very important in the health of your puppy.

It ensures that your puppy will have the tools that it will need to grow into a healthy and happy dog in just a few months.

Early Stages

Puppy TeethingBaby teeth for your puppies do not appear until they are about three weeks old. Molars will not yet be present and these baby teeth will all be gone and replaced by permanent teeth at eight months of age.

Your cute puppy will then have a complete set of 28 teeth with incisors, premolars and canines.

These early teeth are understandably more fragile and can be prone to infections when fractured. They can be slow to appear and might not even show at all. Sometimes, baby teeth are present along permanent teeth and all of these scenarios need veterinarian interventions.

Nutrition Path

Considering the fact that these baby teeth are not strong at all and missing the crushing power of molars, it is important to choose an appropriate way of nourishment without using these fragile teeth too often.

Pupyp milk ReplacerIdeally, puppies get their nourishment from their mommy’s milk up to the first eight weeks of their life. Hence there is no need for much teeth action but if this is not possible, then that is where milk replacements come in.

Milk replacement should have the right balance and levels of nutrition to ensure the young pup’s proper development.

This milk replacement should provide the puppy high levels of calories, protein and especially calcium. Transitioning the puppy from milk to dry food should also be a slow process and definitely not done overnight.

This process should involve decreasing levels of milk and slowly increasing levels of dry food. This will allow the puppy to get used to the smell and taste of dry food as well as give time for the teeth to grow and be able to handle dry food.

This process should take about three weeks.

If you opt to go the homemade diet path, and then make sure that you consult your veterinarian on how and what to provide your growing puppy to ensure their proper and balanced nutrition.

Feeding your young puppy purely leftover food from your table is not the best way to provide such needs.

Commercial Puppy FoodNutrition is the one strongest factor that can affect your puppy’s future. If he is going to be a healthy and well-balanced dog or a sickly and thin adult dog will pretty much depend on what steps you take at this stages of its life.

To ensure he get the proper nutrition required to grow strong and healthy bones and muscle, be sure to feed him proper, organically formulated dog foods such as the Acana variants for adult and puppy dogs or even the Orijen foods for puppies.

Final Thoughts

Teething can be a trying time not just for the puppy but for you, with all the slippers that you might lose. But remember that taking care of a puppy requires patience, understanding and a whole lot of hard work. Just because you are taking care of a puppy, does not mean you can relax.

Some say, Relax, it’s just a puppy”. Well, your world might not revolve around that puppy but for that puppy, you are the world. Remember that.

Orphaned Puppy Nutrition

Orphaned PuppyTaking care of an orphaned puppy is one that is very demanding and yet equally rewarding tasks there is. Even though you are taking care of a young puppy and not a human baby, the demands of these two tasks can be very similar.

The young puppy will depend on you and the decisions you make if it is going to survive or not much like a baby would. The biggest, if not the only major, concern when it comes to young puppies is nutrition.

This dictates if this puppy will grow to be a healthy and happy dog or it will not. So here are a few things that we need to know when it comes to orphaned puppy nutrition.

The First Feedings

Ideally, the puppies will receive their first feeding from their mother and will get what is known as colostrum. It is a yellowish looking cream-like substance that is rich in antibodies to jump start the protection of the puppies from diseases.

But if the puppy is not able to nurse from the start, it will need to be provided with oral doses of blood serum from a healthy dog to compensate for the absence of colostrum. After their first day in life and they are not able to receive colostrum, then the blood product will have to be injected to the puppy.

If this is not done, and in most cases it is not, then you will have to be especially sanitary when feeding and handling the orphaned puppy. It is also worthwhile to give daily probiotics, bene-bac paste or even yogurt.

Moving Forward

Obviously, the puppy cannot process dry puppy food yet so you will need to provide a replacement milk product like that of Esbilac, PetLac or Hartz that can either be found in the nearest vet or pet shop. If your local vet or pet shop does not have any, you can always order online in websites like Amazon.com.

Make sure that you read the instructions and it is also good to ask your vet on how to produce a homemade formula in case you ran out of replacer milk. Never feed cold formula to puppies since they cannot regulate their body temperature yet. You can keep the milk in the fridge but always warm it up before feeding it to the puppies.

You can use canned formula which is a lot more convenient if you can get your hands on some of it since it already is ready for consumption. But whatever you do, do not feed the puppies cow’s milk or dairy because it has too much lactose and can cause diarrhea and consequently, dehydration.

Final Thoughts

The first four weeks will be the challenge since you have to keep a close eye on that young orphaned puppy much like you would a human baby. It has to be fed six to eight times a day at an average of 2 to 3 hour intervals. Some also get up in the middle of the night to feed their puppies but this is not completely necessary if your puppy is adequately healthy.

What Do I Need to Know about Using a Milk Replacer For My Puppy?

Puppy Milk ReplacerIdeally, puppies will be suckling from their mother until about 8 weeks but there are times that some puppies are not doing so. Either they are rejected by the mother or not able to suckle because there are a lot of them to be able to suckle at the same time. But this does not mean that a puppy is doomed and will not have a chance to survive.

There are milk replacement formulas and products that can be exactly what they sound, a replacement for the mother’s milk. The mother’s milk provides all the nourishment that the puppies will need from digestion to their immune system so that is why it is important to have a good idea on what a good milk replacer has.

Stay away from the Moo

Do not feed your young puppies’ cow’s milk. That is basically the general rule because cow’s milk have too much lactose in it that it can cause stomach ache and diarrhea to puppies. This might not sound like a big deal for humans but if your only source of nourishment is what’s causing the problem when you are that small, that can be deadly.

Don’t be cool

Do not feed a puppy chilled formula. Puppies do not have the capability to regulate their own body temperature yet so feeding them right off the fridge can be very harmful. This puppy will depend on you for a lot of things including keeping it warm during this fragile time in its life.

Commercial

There are a lot of milk replacement formulas out there and it is up to you which ones you will choose. Just make sure that you get the ones that have colostrum which is an element that is usually found on a mother’s milk that contribute to boosting their immune systems.

Look for brands like GNC Pets Ultra Mega Premium Milk Replacer, Pet-Lac, Farnam, Just Born, Nuturall, Breeder’s Edge, All Star and a lot more. It is also a good idea to consult your vet about your choices but do additional research too.

Homemade

If you live in a somewhat rural area where milk replacement formulas are not always available, you can go ahead and create a milk replacement with a few ingredients. Sure you can always order online but then again if you have a hungry group of puppies, you might end up having to make some yourself anyway.

There are a lot of recipes online just make sure that you do not use a whisk or blender in mixing them because that creates a lot of bubbles and you don’t want that in a milk replacement formula.

So there you, you should be able to handle the task of feeding your puppy a milk replacement by now. It is not that unusual to have to feed them replacers since a lot of mother dogs start rejecting puppies especially when they are getting bigger and starts growing teeth.

Just make sure that you always ask your vet’s advice whenever you will go use a milk replacement so that he can give you a good idea on how to provide a properly balanced and nutritious milk for your fur-babies.