Dogs can’t talk, but they sure do have their own ways of letting us know that they’re excited to eat. Some do the raw dinner dance, others get vocal, and others even bring us their food dish.
But when it comes to feeding time, switching your dog to a raw food diet can lead to some questions about the amount of food you need to give him.
This handy guide will help you figure out how much you should be feeding your dog so you can feel more confident that you’re not overfeeding, and you’ll always make sure he gets the nutrients he needs.
How Much Raw Food Should I Feed my Puppy?
If you’ve ever owned a puppy before, you know how fast they grow. It seems like every time you turn around they get bigger and bigger, no matter how badly you wish they’d stay little. As a result of this growth, puppies need the right portion of raw food to provide them with the nutrients to keep them going.
We recommend using the following guideline as a start when feeding your puppy. Keep in mind this is based on their age only. Toy breed dogs grow at a different rate than large breed dogs and as such will be at a different physical development state at 8 months. Consider that at 8 months of age a Great Dane or Mastiff will be in prime growth at 8 months while a Yorkie or Shi Tzu will have much less to develop physically. It is important to keep in mind that the below - especially for puppies - is only a starting guideline and adjustments must be made based on individual needs, development and diets.
- 2-4 months old: 8-10% of their current weight in pounds per day
- 4-5 months old: 6-8% of their current weight in pounds per day
- 6-8 months old: 4-6% of their current weight in pounds per day
- 8-12 months old: 3-4% of their current weight in pounds per day
How Much Raw Food Should I Feed my Adult Dog?
When it comes to adult dogs, there are other considerations and needs you should factor in. An adult dog’s diet is based on maintenance instead of the growth support that they needed as a puppy.
Just like humans, a dog’s portion depends on their weight, metabolism and their activity level. Of course, you should talk to your vet if your dog has any special dietary needs or medical requirements that affect her food intake.
Here are some general guidelines for feeding your adult dog raw food:
- Active, underweight adult dogs should eat 3% of their current weight in pounds per day.
- Senior, less active, overweight adult dogs should eat 1.5% of their current weight in pounds per day.
- Adult dogs at an ideal weight should eat 2-3% of their current weight in pounds per day.
If you are wondering how often you should feed your dog, we recommend 2-4 times per day for puppies and 1-2 times per day for adult dogs. Again, this will depend on if your dog has any specific requirements set out by your vet.
Finding Your Dog’s Ideal Weight
Sometimes it takes more than just looking at your pet to determine their ideal weight. Many long haired and double coated breeds can be harder to gauge by just looking at them. Breeds differ in shape and build, so that can complicate things when you are trying to figure out their weight.
We encourage you to feel them to best determine their physique. Besides, it’s another great reason to pet your dog!
You can determine whether your dog is overweight by using your fist as a guideline.
Feel your dog’s ribs and compare it to your fist. If your dog’s ribs feel like the spot between your palm and your thumb, he is overweight. If his ribs feel like the area of your knuckles, he is underweight. His ideal weight should have his ribs feeling like the back of your hand.
Infographic: Raw Feeding Guide for your dog
If you still aren’t sure how much raw food to feed your dog, get in touch with us. We’ll answer your questions and give you the best advice to help you make the transition.