Softening Puppy Food
Puppies like wet food. If you are reading this article, you probably already know that, but you may not know why. Puppies require higher protein and fat content than adult dogs; the best way to deliver these nutrients in a palatable way is to make sure they are soft (for example, by adding water).
However, there comes a time when you need to wean your pup off of his beloved wet food and switch him over to dry puppy kibble for good. For this reason, you need to know how to soften dry puppy food. Luckily for you, we’re going to go over the best method here in a moment. For most people, switching from wet to dry food is a relatively straightforward process.
However, it’s worth noting that certain dogs have difficulty making this transition between moist and crunchy diets, so you will need to consult your vet before beginning this process if your particular pup needs a prolonged weaning process. If you suspect little Fido may have a sensitive stomach, please consult your vet before beginning this process.
First, it’s essential to explain why you would want to soften dry food in the first place because it isn’t always necessary. For example, some breeds (like Labrador retrievers) can be prone to dental problems and may benefit from hard foods that help scrape away plaque while they eat; others (such as pugs and Bulldogs) tend to develop respiratory issues related to the food bowl so a slow approach might prove best in these cases too.
Why Soak Puppy Food? What Are the Benefits?
Dry kibble – especially hard and crunchy varieties like kibbles that contain large chunks (which some vets recommend to help clean your pup’s teeth) – may be difficult for a pup to eat, especially one that is teething or just learning how to eat solid food. When a dry dog or cat food is softened with water, it becomes more palatable and easier to chew; in addition, some puppies may try to wolf down their food without chewing enough, making them choke – but this won’t happen if you soften their kibble first.
This method also makes it easier for your pup to digest, especially if he has an upset tummy. Think about all the things that happen with food in your pup’s body: they chew it, swallow it, and then their stomach breaks down what’s left with powerful acids and enzymes. This process works the same way whether you’re talking about wet or dry dog food, but it’s easier on your pup’s system if the former is already partially broken down.
A softened meal also makes it easier for him to absorb nutrients and vitamins from his food – so be sure to keep this in mind if you feed him commercial pet food that has been formulated to meet specific nutritional standards. Again, the same applies to dry vs. wet dog food; digestion will be easier and more effective for your pup if you soak it first.
Soaking dry puppy food isn’t just a habit that pet parents develop out of convenience – there is an actual purpose behind this practice that we’ll discuss now:
How to Soak Puppy Food
The best way to soak or soften dry food is to follow the instructions above. You can use one of your pup’s bowls if you want, but make sure it’s clean first. Just put in two cups of warm water for every three cups of kibble, stir well for about ten minutes, and then let the mixture sit for about an hour.
A great way to ensure you don’t forget is to use a digital timer or your smartphone’s alarm clock; it doesn’t take that long, but you don’t want the food sitting around in the water for longer than necessary – especially if some of it is still dry (and therefore more likely to get gross and moldy).
If you’re worried about bacteria in the food, don’t be. According to petMD, if your puppy is healthy and his immune system is robust, he will not get sick from eating wet food that has been left out for up to six hours at room temperature. If you want to be extra careful, just put it in the refrigerator and change out the water every two hours.
How Long Should I Soak Puppy Food?
After your pup’s food has been sitting in water for about an hour, it should be easy to mash with a fork. If you’re able to do this, it’s ready – no need to let it sit overnight or any other time.
You might have also heard people say that dry dog food shouldn’t be soaked at all – or that it doesn’t help to soften it. However, the fact is that soaking dry puppy food does provide several benefits for your young pup’s health and happiness.
When Should I Stop Soaking Puppy Food?
Now you know how to soften dry puppy food and how long it should be soaked for. The last thing you need to know is when to stop soaking your pup’s kibble; this is simple: once it has been submerged in water long enough, there’s no reason to soak his kibble any longer. While older and larger dogs can benefit from a longer soak time, this is just a precautionary measure if your pup eats too quickly.
How Often Should I Feed My Puppy?
Young dogs need to eat more frequently than adult dogs. Your pup may be ready for his next meal within an hour after finishing his last one. For this reason, some pet parents choose to feed their dog twice a day instead of once. If you decide to feed your pup twice a day, we recommend spacing the two meals apart by at least four hours.
Is It Ok to Soften Puppy Food With Water?
You now know that the answer is yes; it’s perfectly safe and healthy for your pup to eat moistened kibble. However, we want to stress again that you should only do this if a veterinarian has checked his health and he has no digestive issues (which may be exacerbated by feeding him soft food).
Finally, keep in mind that although wet food may be processed more efficiently by your pup’s stomach than dry, there is still some risk that he could eat it too quickly – which can lead to vomiting or other digestive problems.
Soaking dry food can make it easier for your pup to digest and enjoy his meal.
When you soak kibble, keep an eye on the time, so it doesn’t sit in water for longer than necessary.
Puppy food should be soaked for 1-2 hours before being fed to your pup.
Once the food has been soaked, discard the water and give it to your pup as soon as it is ready.
Feeding your pup soft or moistened kibble can be a healthy choice, but only if a veterinarian has checked his health and does not have any digestive problems (which may be exacerbated by feeding him soft food).
You should continue to do whatever you usually do with your pup’s food unless your veterinarian instructs otherwise.
If your puppy eats his meal too quickly, he could experience digestive issues, such as vomiting or diarrhea. Be sure to monitor how quickly he finishes his meal and adjust the serving size accordingly.