Though your dog’s genetics play a huge role in determining his weight, having a well-balanced nutrient diet can also make a difference. You will see faster growth in your dog when you feed him the right food.
As a nutrient-rich diet will help your dog grow healthily and reach his genetic potential, it is essential that your dog’s meal plan should be nutritious and high in protein.
Protein is crucial to the building of muscle and bones, as well as to the maintenance of a healthy metabolism.
The diet should also contain carbohydrates and fats. Carbohydrates are the main source of energy for your dog’s body and fat is needed to help maintain his muscle mass.
The fat content of a dog’s diet will help him to have a healthy coat and to be free from skin problems.
You should make sure your dog’s diet is balanced, because dogs require specific nutrients to grow and develop properly.
Your dog’s health depends on high-quality food, and nutrition should always be at the top of your list when you are shopping for his food. It should be free of artificial ingredients, additives, and preservatives.
Types of dog food for your dog : Dry (Kibble) Or Wet (Canned)
You should look for a dog food that has the right amount of protein and fat.
Dog food that is too low in protein and fat will not provide your dog with enough energy. On the other hand, dog food that is too high in protein and fat will cause your dog to put on weight.
When it comes to dog food, there are two different types that are available: dry (Kibble) or wet (Canned).
Kibble is made with meat by-products, as well as cereals and grains, whereas wet or canned dog food is prepared by mixing animal meat, vegetables, vitamins, and other ingredients into a pre-cooked, sanitized stew or loaf.
Generally, dry dog foods are less expensive, and canned dog foods (while more expensive) are more nutritious. In fact, some dry dog foods contain additives that make them more palatable.
High-quality canned foods are balanced nutritionally since they contain both meat and vegetables. They are low in sodium and additive-free.
For canned foods, it is recommended that at least 50% of the ingredients contain meat, and 25% contain vegetables. Natural and wholesome ingredients should constitute the remainder.
Canned foods would be a better choice if you are looking for a high-quality food that is both affordable and of high quality.
What Should I Feed My Dog for Growth?
Dogs with the genes to grow big will need to be fed the right food during their growth stages in order to achieve the best results.
Each breed of dog grows at a different pace. Some breeds grow very quickly, while others grow very slowly. Knowing your breed and feeding your pet the right food is the key to successful pet breeding.
You should feed your dog a healthy and nutritious meal at his stage of growth when you want him to grow well.
Certain foods are for the growing stage, while others are for the maturing stage. Knowing what foods are good for your dog during the growth stage will allow you to feed him appropriately.
Your vet can help you determine the best diet for your developing dog.
Generally, your dog will need a diet regime that is made up of the following elements:
Water plays a vital role in your puppy’s metabolism. In fact, 70% of the puppy’s body is made up of it.
You probably know your dog needs more water if he exhibits signs such as panting, puffy eyes, dry nose, thick saliva and sticky gums.
If your dog enjoys playing in the sun, and he eats dry food every day, make sure to provide him with fresh clean water, at least one ounce for every pound of his body weight daily.
The most important source of muscle nutrition is protein, and while grains, rice, and potatoes are a decent source, meat has the highest concentration and enables your puppy to grow faster.
Fat is a good source of energy and helps absorb vitamins. It also contributes to the health of your dog’s skin and coat. Too much fat, however, can lead to your dog’s obesity.
Most of the energy that dogs obtain from their food comes from carbohydrates, such as rice, grain, and pasta that is precooked.
The amount of calories a highly active puppy needs per mouthful is more than twice that of an adult dog.
Minerals are crucial for your puppy’s growth. Puppy’s bones and muscles require calcium and phosphorus, and the red blood cells need iron.
Vitamins play a crucial role in maintaining a healthy metabolism. Vitamin A contributes to eyesight, vitamin B to nervous system function, and vitamin D to bone density.
Vitamin E keeps the skin healthy, while vitamin K helps clot the blood.
A lack of dietary fiber will lead to constipation, which will not be a pleasant experience for your puppy.
When it comes to puppy nutrition, it’s vital to provide the right combination of the above elements.
There should be at least two meals per day for your dog, about 12 hours apart. An active breed who is NOT receiving treats between meals may benefit from a breakfast, lunch, and dinner schedule.
If your dog is not fed for more than 12 hours, his stomach becomes hyperacidity, resulting in nausea. Keeping the feeding schedule consistent will ensure your dog stays healthy.
What Size Will My Puppy Grow To?
By the time dogs reach 12 months of age, they will weigh about 2.5 times as much as they did at 14 weeks and twice as much as they did at four months.
This information is based on the average growth rate of a medium-sized dog at 12 months of age, and may be different for your dog.
And of course, the following factors are going to affect the size of your growing dog as well:
- Depending on breed: Dog breeds differ greatly in their growth and size at full maturity.
- Toy (approximately 12 lbs)
- Small (about 12-25 lbs)
- Medium (around 25-50 lbs)
- Large (between 50-100 lbs)
- Giant (more than 100 lbs)
- Gender: Male dogs tend to be larger than female dogs.
- Neutering/Spaying: Spayed or neutered puppies tend to weigh a bit more and have a taller stature when they are adults. This is because the surgery somehow alters the chemicals that regulate their growth.
- Food and Exercise: A dog’s weight can be affected by the amount of food he eats and whether he is getting a sufficient amount of exercise.
It is believed that toy breeds mature between 8 and 9 months of age and grow faster than their larger counterparts. Most of their growth occurs within the first 11 weeks of life.
In general, they gain about 1-5 ounces per week (around 5-10% of their body weight). You should double the 6-week weight of your dog, then double it again in order to best predict its adult size.
In other words, a puppy that weighs 3 pounds at 6 weeks will weigh approximately 12 pounds as an adult (3*2=6, 6*2=12).
Some popular breeds of toy dog include: Chihuahuas, Yorkshire Terriers, Toy Poodles, Pekingese, Dachshunds, and Papillons.
The growth of small breed dogs usually stops between the ages of 8 and 12 months. Their growth takes place mostly between 0-11 weeks, just like with toy breeds.
On average, they gain 5 to 8 pounds a week. To predict their adult weight, apply the same formula you use for toy breeds: multiply their six-week weight by two, then multiply this by two again.
Some popular breeds of toy dog include: Pug, French Bulldog, Beagle and Miniature Pinscher.
It takes medium-sized dogs 9 to 12 months to reach adult weight, with the fastest growth happening between 0-16 weeks.
You can calculate medium-sized breeds by multiplying their weight at 14 weeks by 2, then adding that figure to 1/2 of their 14-week weight.
Let’s say you have a puppy that weighs 14 pounds at 14 weeks, his adult weight will be 35 pounds (14*2=28, 28+7=35).
Some popular medium breeds of dog include: Australian Shepherd, Basset Hound, Beagle and Border Collie.
Generally, large breed dogs need 12 to 18 months to reach their adult height and weight, with the fastest growth happening during the first 20 weeks.
To calculate their adult weight, use the dog’s weight at 20 weeks and dividing the value by his current age (in weeks) and multiplying by 52.
Using this formula: for a puppy who weighs 40 pounds at 20 weeks. (40÷20=2, 2*52=104 pounds).
Some popular large breeds of dog include: German Shepherd, Rottweiler, Doberman Pinscher and Labrador Retriever.
While most giant breeds are able to reach their full adult size within 12-18 months, some can take up to 2 to 3 years. They usually grow at the fastest rate during the first 25 weeks of their lives.
Giant breeds follow the same calculation methods as large breeds.
Some popular large breeds of dog include: Irish Wolfhound, Saint Bernard, Mastiff, Newfoundland and Great Dane.
When Does A Dog Reach Full Size?
At what age is a dog considered fully grown? The following will be the general guidelines:
Small Breed: The growth of small breeds usually ceases between 6 to 8 months of age.
Medium Breed: Most medium breed puppies reach adult size after about a year.
Large Breed: The growth of large breed dogs tends to stop between 12 and 18 months of age.
Predicting a Dog’s Height
Predicting your puppy’s adult height can be done by measuring him at 6 months of age. Multiply this figure by 100, then divide that result by 75.
The formula uses the assumption that puppies are approximately 75% of their adult height at 6 months old.
Do Dogs Reach Their Full Height In A Year?
Once a puppy reaches one year of age, he or she is considered a fully grown dog.
However, for large breeds of toy, they will still continue to gain height and size till 18 months old.