Making the best puppy food choices can be a real challenge.... but it's easier when you have all the information you need to pick out the right food for YOUR puppy. Get it right here!
If trying to decide on the best puppy food for your new pup has you thoroughly confused, don't worry - it's easier when you know exactly what your puppy needs and what to look for in a food!
The sheer number of different brands and formulas on the market, the claims of the manufacturers, plus conflicting, recommendations from experts and other dog owners all add up to a dizzying amount of information to process.
You want to do what's best for your puppy, and you know that what he eats is going to have a big impact on his future health, but it's all so confusing.
Don't worry, this page will help you to see the 'big picture' more clearly, and make sure that you pick the right food for your individual puppy without wasting a whole lot of time, effort and money in the process....
The most important thing to know about the puppy food you choose to use is what's in it!
The manufacturing process, and how the food is stored, also play a role, but the ingredients are the key to a good food, for puppies or dogs.
There are certain ingredients you want to see in a puppy food and others you don't. The best puppy food choices 'get it right'.
Ingredients you want.....
Ingredients you don't want.....
When you're sorting through the best puppy food choices, it's not just the ingredient lists you need to look at.
Commercial dog food and puppy food are regulated by the AAFCO (The Association of American Feed Control Officials) and you need a food that adheres to the standards set by AAFCO.
There are two different types of wording that you may see on a bag of puppy food...
This means that the food has undergone certain tests (such as chemical analysis and nutrient calculations) to make sure it meets the AAFCO requirements.
This means that it's been evaluated using feeding trials to ensure adequate levels of nutrition that don't need supplementation.
Neither of these statements guarantee that a food is nutritionally complete, right for your pup, or that it's one of the best puppy food choices you can make.. but any food you consider needs to have them there at a minimum!
European dog food regulations are tougher than those here in the US. Puppy foods that meet the 'APHIS' (Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service) guidelines are acceptable for export to Europe and should be of a superior nutritional quality.
You may also see this 'complete and balanced for growth'.. this means it's a food for puppies rather than for adult dogs.
Not all puppies are created equal (in physical size anyway!) and there's a HUGE variation in size between the smallest, and largest dog breeds.
Because of this, and because big dogs and small dogs mature at entirely different rates, your puppy has his own individual nutritional needs.
Most of the best puppy food choices are designed to meet these very specific demands, and are formulated with small, medium, or large sized puppies in mind.
A puppy of a mid-sized breed will have more moderate needs than his extra big or extra small counterparts. This is what you need to know.....
As well as having individual formulas, the best puppy food choices that have been designed for different sized breeds will have pieces that are the appropriate size too!
The small breed puppy food will have tiny pieces that are easy for these little guys to chew, swallow and digest.
The large breed puppy foods have bigger pieces so that your big boy (or girl) won't inhale, or choke on them.
Making sure your pup gets a premium food with the right balance of nutrition for his size/breed not only keeps him happy and healthy - but it can have a real impact on the long-term quality, and even the length, of his life.
So, although deciding which are the best puppy food choices for your little one can take time and effort, it's most definitely worth it!