Frequently Asked Question (FAQ)
Nutrition: When should I change my puppy/kitten to adult food?
Balanced nutrition is an extremely important aspect of your companion's overall good health and well being. This means monitoring both what and how much they eat from the start. A high quality, well balanced appropriate pet food will more than pay for itself by helping to decrease the incidence of disease and extend your pet's life span just like it does for people.
All puppies and kittens have specific nutritional requirements for appropriate growth. A high quality nutritionally balanced food should be fed during this time period. For cats and small breed dogs, the growth rate slows significantly at around 6 to 7 months of age. In addition, most of us are spaying or neutering our pets at this same age which also causes a significant decrease in the metabolic rate. The end result is a dramatic decrease in the amount of calories required to meet daily needs. These pets should be put on a high quality adult maintenance food at this time. Special adult maintenance foods also are available from your veterinarian to help control some health issues known to plague cats and small dogs such as periodontal and urinary disease.
Large and giant breed dogs on the other hand have different nutritional requirements. Because of their extremely rapid growth rate during the first year, they should be put on a high quality food formulated for large breeds. These foods are nutritionally balanced to help avoid some of the orthopaedic problems encountered with rapid growth. Puppies should stay on this special food until around 1 year of age for large breeds and 1 and 1/2 years for giant breeds when they have completed most of their growth. A high quality adult maintenance food can then be selected to help control common problems encountered by large and giant breed dogs such as obesity and joint disease.
Remember that good nutrition and weight control can extend your pet's life span and improve his/her quality of life. Ask your veterinarian which food is appropriate for your pet.