Puppy food is specifically formulated to meet the nutritional needs of young, growing dogs. The kibble may be small, but the nutritional value should be very high. Because they are growing so rapidly, puppies need twice the nutritional requirements of adult dogs. Their bones, muscles, joints organs and immune systems all need support while they continue to develop. That is why it is so important to make sure their needs are being met with only the best puppy food.
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How to Find the Best Puppy Food?
When considering the best puppy food there are several factors to consider. First of all, puppies need proper nutrition. Some of the leading concerns for most pet owners are the main ingredients. Start with dog foods that are AAFCO certified. Though they may not all be the best puppy food, you at least know they meet the minimum nutritional requirements.
Because there are thousands of available options on the market another thing that will help make your task easier is simply checking the ingredient list. You want the first ingredients to be high in meat-based protein, high in natural fats and oils, and lower in carbohydrates. You also want the first ingredients to be identifiable, animal-based proteins like chicken, lamb or chicken meal. If possible you should avoid fillers like corn, wheat and soy. Things you definitely do not want to see on the ingredient list include sugar, pesticides, growth hormones, or bone-meal.
Another consideration when choosing the best dog food for puppies is making sure the dog food is easy to digest. The best puppy food to use is dry, small kibble. It contains more protein, is cost effective, and is better for helping keep your pet’s teeth clean. Also, it is easy to digest. During the early stages you can start your puppy on dry kibble mixed with milk to make it even easier on the stomach. Then you can progressively move to just the hard stuff.
Finally, when picking a puppy chow, you will want to keep the breed of your dog in mind. A puppy of a mid-sized breed will not have as many needs as a larger or smaller breed. So make sure you have an idea of what size breed you have and what their demands may be. Small or toy breeds have a high metabolism, but small stomachs. As such they will eat smaller servings, and more often than larger breeds. They also require a food with more calories to burn and a smaller sized kibble. Medium sized breeds usually reach 20-50 pounds and need a food with approximately a 25 percent protein base.
For large breeds, those that reach more than 50 pounds, the puppy will grow at a phenomenal rate. However, too much protein or certain minerals will lead to bone and joint problems in the future. Making sure your pet gets the best puppy food with the right nutrition for their size and breed hill help them live a happy and healthy life. If you have questions about this, there will be a feeding chart and directions on the label of your dog food.
Reviews of the 10 Best Puppy Foods
1. Taste of the Wild Grain-Free High Prairie Dry Dog Food for Puppy
This grain-free formula is easily digestible, making it the perfect source of energy for a growing and active puppy. Taste of The Wild for Puppies includes a blend of protein sources including real roasted venison and bison. These are lean meats with great flavor. They are highly digestible proteins to help your dog maintain overall good health and muscle development. Other minimally processed fruits and vegetables are included in the ingredients. These help deliver natural antioxidants and help support a healthy lifestyle.
Taste of the Wild is a high quality puppy food without any fillers. Dogs love the taste and the smaller kibble is specifically designed for puppies. The top listed ingredients include bison, lamb meal, sweet potatoes and egg product. There is no corn or soy in this blend. Consumers say this is a top quality food at a reasonable price.
2. Castor and Pollux Natural Ultramix Dry Puppy Food
If you are looking for the best puppy food for your dog, then make sure they can start eating this food as soon as possible is important. This brand is ideal for puppies from the moment they are weaning until they can make a full transition to adult dog food. It is made with chicken and other proteins along with minimally processed vegetables and fruits.
It is a high quality, healthy food developed by people who treat their puppies like family. The safe and innovative choices that make up this formula are natural and of the highest quality. The leading ingredients of Castor and Pollux include chicken, chicken meal, turkey meal, milo and ground whole oats. There are no artificial colors or preservatives. Also there are no corn, wheat or soy fillers. Consumers who use the Castor and Pollux brand say it is a premium puppy food at a reasonable price. Their dogs seem satisfied and they love the blend of ingredients.
3. Merrick Classic Puppy Dry Food
The Merrick dog food is made with high-quality protein, whole grains, vegetables and fruits. This impressive blend provides your dog with natural nutrients and supports the overall health and growth of your puppy. The Merrick brand does not skimp on the good stuff. The number one ingredient is real chicken, making this one of the best puppy foods on the market. If you want to support a beautiful, happy and healthy pet, then this is the food you should consider. It is made from 60 percent meat proteins, 20 percent fresh produce and 20 percent whole grains.
The top listed ingredients include deboned chicken, chicken meal, turkey meal, brown rice, peas, barley, and sweet potato. There are no ingredients from China and no corn, wheat, or soy. The food is suitable for all breeds and all stages, but is specifically geared to nourish those growing puppies. Because Merrick dog food so packed full of quality ingredients your dog will feel satisfied with less kibble, but still get all the nutrients they need.
4. Wellness Complete Health Puppy Recipe
Puppies have mighty souls and little bodies. As such your puppy has certain needs for proper growth and development. The carefully chosen ingredients of the Wellness puppy food uses deboned chicken, oatmeal & salmon meal. They are authentic ingredients to provide whole-body nutritional support. With this puppy food your dog gets the right mineral balance. It ensures bones grow properly, DHA helps support brain development, moderated carbohydrates give your dog energy and increased amounts of protein promote healthy muscle growth.
Customers who purchased The Wellness Complete Health Recipe are pleased with how well their puppies like the food and how nutritious it is for them. It is a wonderful, natural choice if you want to start your puppy off right and encourage lifelong health.
5. Purina Pro Plan Dry Puppy Food
All the high-quality ingredients of this puppy food are selected to help support your dog while they grow. The number one ingredient in Purina Pro Plan is chicken. The formula uses natural sources of glucosamine to help support joints and cartilage as they develop. It also contains fish oil to help nourish the brain and eyes. Other natural ingredients include antioxidants, calcium, and phosphorus. These help to develop an efficient and vital immune system and skeletal structure. Also, OptiStart are easy-to-digest natural milk proteins meant to support your puppy develop their immune system and promote easier digestion and absorption of nutrients.
If you want complete and balanced nutrition for your puppy then you want to take a closer look at Purina Pro Plan Dry Puppy Food. The top listed ingredients include chicken, brewers rice, and poultry by-product meal. This is a great food for puppies and they will readily eat the kibble. Also, Purina offers complete satisfaction or your money back, guaranteed.
6. Hill’s Science Diet Puppy Healthy Small Bites Dry Dog Food
The ingredients of this puppy food are precisely balanced. It is an easy-to-digest formula meant specifically to nourish growing dogs. The smaller kibble is great for puppies. The dog food promotes a healthy immune system, is optimal for brain and eye development, and encourages healthy joint development and enhanced mobility. The gentle and healthy digestion gets nutrients into your dog’s system efficiently. It gives them the energy they need to play and the vital nutrients they need to grow. Hill’s Science Diet also helps your puppy maintain an ideal body weight. The Hill’s Science Diet experts have been working on perfecting their formula since 1939. Over 150 veterinarians and pet nutritionists are involved in developing and perfecting these products.
With this puppy food you can help your dog’s health, energy level and quality of life. The top listed ingredients include chicken meal, cracked pearled barley, whole grain wheat, and pork meal. Puppies love and thrive on the Hill’s Science Diet for Puppies. Also, it is a high quality puppy food at a reasonable price. It is a healthy choice for your pet, and that matters.
7. Blue Buffalo Dry Food for Puppies
Puppies love this tasty chicken-based dog food. It is packed full of valuable nutrients and minerals to help your growing dog develop all the essentials for a happy and healthy life. The high quality protein of Blue Buffalo for Puppies provides necessary amino acids to help with muscle development. It also includes wholesome whole grains that are complex carbohydrates and supply the energy any playful puppy would need. Also some healthy garden veggies like carrots, sweet potatoes and peas are included and full of nutrients.
The top listed ingredients include deboned chicken, chicken meal, whole ground brown rice, and whole ground barley. This dog food does not contain any corn, wheat or soy. It is a healthy and nutritious blend that your puppy is sure to benefit from and enjoy. Customers say Blue Buffalo for Puppies is a great dog food, full of great ingredients and comes highly recommended. Though it is a bit more expensive, it is full of ingredients that are good for your puppy and well worth the price.
8. Royal Canin Mini Puppy Dry Dog Food
The Royal Canin brand focuses on size based nutrition, which is important for any growing puppy. Different sized dogs require different things by way of nutrition. This is why finding the right food for your puppy is important. For example, puppies have a greater need for intensified energy. Royal Canin Mini Puppy is developed to support those high energy levels and sustain them through their intense growth period. The highly digestible proteins and probiotics make it easy to get proper nutrients into your dog’s system.
The kibble also helps reduce the tartar and will preserve your puppy’s teeth. The antioxidant complex of the Royal Canin Mini Puppy will help support your dog’s natural defenses. The top listed ingredients include chicken meal, brewers rice, and chicken fat. This dog food comes highly recommended by vets and breeders alike, and will help your small puppy thrive.
9. Beneful Healthy Growth for Puppies
You want healthy growth for your little buddy, which is why you need a dog food that is made with real chicken, wholesome rice and real milk. This is one of the best puppy foods available and is specifically formulated to keep little puppies happy, healthy and strong. Beneful Healthy Growth for Puppies is high in protein to help with growing muscles. It is also enriched with calcium for teeth and bone development, and rich with vitamins and nutrients that will develop a healthy immune system. This is a dry dog food made of small kibble that is easy for your puppy to chew and enjoy.
The delicious chicken and rice flavor will interest your pet and help them gain proper weight while they grow. The top listed ingredients in this puppy chow include ground yellow corn, chicken by-product meal, corn gluten meal, whole wheat flour and animal fat. This is a great value dog food that pleases both owner and pet alike.
10. Pedigree Puppy Complete Nutrition Dry Dog Food
Puppies need to develop a strong immune system, strong bones and muscles, and healthy organs. For that they need proper nutrients that can only come from the best puppy food. If you want to treat your puppy to a good meal, then the Pedigree puppy chow is a viable option. It is packed with minerals and vitamins that cover the four essential needs of a growing puppy. Things like skin and coat, digestion, immunity and oral care will also benefit when you choose the complete nutrition kibble.
The leading ingredients include ground whole corn, meat and bone meal, corn gluten meal and animal fat. Customers who have purchased the Pedigree puppy chow for their pet say it is a great pet food and their dogs have loved it. It is a great price for a good sized bag and many plan to always buy Pedigree. It has never been easier to help your little bundle of fur grow up.
How to Get the Best from the Best Dog Food for Puppies
Finding the best puppy food is one of the simplest and most reliable ways to get your puppy the nutrients they need to grow up and be healthy. As you might guess, puppies go through a lot of developmental stages. You want to make sure the dog food you choose can help them get through those phases and their changes in appetite. Some days it might seem like your dog is starving and some days they will appear to be the pickiest eaters. These types of changes are normal and the right dog food will help them all along the way. Unless your puppy is completely refusing food and shows other signs of being sick, you have nothing to worry about. For the most part, if you have the right kibble, your dog will not ignore food that is being offered.
One thing to do is to set up an eating regimen for your puppy. This will allow your dog to get the most from their diet and their dog food. When you feed a measured amount of food to your puppy at specific times of day it will keep your dog from becoming obese and will disperse Proper Nutrition for Puppies as they were intended. If you have any questions about portion size or number of meals, just consult the label on your dog food. They will recommend meals based on the size and weight of your puppy.
Also, keep in mind that most dogs do not like to change up their meals. Though we enjoy a variety of foods and flavors, your dog will actually prefer the normalcy. If you have the best puppy food your dog will enjoy it meal after meal and day after day. Don’t forget that your puppy needs continued access to fresh water throughout the day.
Final Summary on the Best Puppy Food
If you want to avoid filling up your puppy’s little tummy with rubbish then you want the best puppy food. Though it might seem daunting to find the best dog food for your puppy, you can be up to the task. Look for foods that are high in natural proteins and other nutrients a growing dog will need. The more ingredients you readily recognize on the label, the better it will be for your puppy. Other things to look for include natural fats, Vitamins A, C and E, priobiotics, Omega 3 and 6 oils. Dry kibble is one of the most popular choices for puppy food and you can mix it with moist food or milk for very young puppies. Just because the commercials say so, it does not mean you are in fact buying the best puppy foods on the market. Finding the best puppy food for your pet may require a little leg work, but it will be well worth the effort to improve the health and happiness of your puppy.
I've been a dog lover since the day I was born but it's the current four legged love of my life, Phoebe who inspired me to create the Munch.Zone.
We moved together from Israel to New York in 2013, love hiking together, and never pass up a trip to the dog park. Watching her over the years sparked so many questions about dog behavior and health needs, and it wasn't always easy to find answers. Thus, the Munch.Zone was born.
On any given day you'll find me watching Netflix originals, eating popcorn, and thinking about how to get into house flipping.