While having a new puppy is both fun and adorable, the reality is that adding a new pup to your family is a tremendous amount of work. You must take the proper steps when your new dog is young to give them the very best foundation that you can.
Did you know that properly weaning your puppy doesn’t have to be difficult? It’s a crucial step to ensure that your new dog develops properly, and it can be relatively simple. Nevertheless, there is a lot to know about the process of weaning a puppy, and if you’re unsure of where to start, we get it. Today, we’re going to share everything that we know about this process.
It can be intimidating to figure out where to start, especially if you don’t want to upset your puppy's stomach. Before you attempt to wean them, however, doing some research can make a tremendous difference.
Let’s go over everything you need to know about getting started with weaning your puppy and any supplements that can help young dogs after the process of weaning is complete.
What Is Weaning?
First, let’s define weaning. This term refers to the process of transitioning your new puppy from their mother dog’s milk to solid dog food. This should be a gradual process, as weaning your puppy too quickly can lead to problems down the road. Therefore, take your time, and be sure you’re doing it correctly.
If you have any specific questions about weaning, you should always reach out to a trusted veterinarian that knows your puppy and their mother dog. This is an excellent way to ensure that you’re getting accurate advice and insight.
Weaning is a natural process, and it happens for several reasons. For one, milking can be physically demanding for a mother dog. It also allows your dog to make the transition from dependent puppy to independent successfully. When your puppy starts, they need their mother for everything, from basic care to food.
Once they are successfully weaned, they will no longer rely on their mother for food. This allows the pup a greater sense of independence.
When Should You Start Weaning A Puppy?
When dogs are out in the wild, weaning naturally happens as soon as puppies develop their teeth. Because this typically happens at around three to four weeks of age, that’s when you could expect wild dogs to begin the weaning process.
In the wild, suckling will then begin to irritate or hurt the mother. She will move away and then leave the puppies, starting for short periods of time and then gradually increasing.
Naturally speaking, weaning involves the mother dog regurgitating food for the puppies, who will then consume it. Sometimes domesticated dogs attempt to replicate this, and it concerns their owners. Don’t panic if you observe this behavior; it is normal and nothing to raise an eyebrow over.
For domesticated dogs, weaning usually begins when the dogs are somewhere around three to four weeks old. Think of it this way: the faster puppies are weaned, the faster the physical strain on the mother dog ends.
If your puppy has been hand raised instead, you can start the weaning process sooner. As soon as the pup’s eyes are open, begin to offer the dog soft foods.
What Is The Process For Weaning A Puppy?
You must follow the correct process to wean a puppy successfully. It takes a while to complete this process, so start slow and take your time. Again, consult your veterinarian to ensure you’re doing this properly.
Begin by removing the mother dog from the puppies for just an hour, two to three times per day. During this time, you will attempt to make the pups begin to try eating solid foods.
Step One: Create A Gruel
Your first step is to create a gruel. You can do this using canned or dry puppy food. Mix it in with a puppy milk replacer or water. Look for reputable puppy food and be sure it is grain-free.
Ideally, you would use the same food brand that the puppy’s mother consumes. If the puppies don’t take that, you can mix two cups of puppy food, two cups of water, and 12.5 ounces of puppy milk replacer.
Step Two: Give The Puppies The Gruel You Created
When your puppies are away from their mother during these hours, you can give them the gruel.
Be sure to feed this in a shallow dish or a baking pan; either works. Put the puppies near it. If they don’t have any interest, simply dip your finger in and touch the pup’s mouth. This will allow them to taste it. Beware: this could get a bit messy!
Step Three: Reunite The Puppies With Their Mother
Once you have reunited the puppies and their mom, you can let the mother dog kick the rest of the food from the dish. Then, she will likely clean the puppies by licking them. Gradually, you can increase the amount of solid food that you’re giving the dogs.
To begin, start with just 10% solid food. Then, transition it to more solid until they don’t need dry food diluted. Increase the amount every week until their diet is entirely solid.
This will likely happen when they are around seven to eight weeks.
When Is The Right Time For My Dog To Take Supplements?
There are a few things to know about dog supplements. The first thing to know is that they are an excellent way to support your pet’s overall health. They can really help your dog live its healthiest, happiest, most active life.
While certain types of dogs don’t require supplements until they get older, we know it is essential to be proactive. This means that you can find a supplement that works for your dog in their youth, and then you can change it as they age. WINPRO supplements are safe to give your dog after the weaning process is complete.
Of course, reaching out to a vet to get their seal of approval is a great idea before giving your new puppy any supplements. This will help ensure that you’ve selected the right supplements to give your dog. Regardless of the supplement you choose, you should always make sure that it is puppy safe.
Why Choose WINPRO Pet?
For younger dogs, we suggest WINPRO Pet’s Gut Health Supplements. This helps support their digestive health as well as their immune system. Therefore, this supplement could prove helpful when attempting to eat new food and try different things.
This product was formulated with clinically proven animal blood proteins. It will help your dog have normal gut function while protecting them against stressors that could lead to negative immune impacts. This product is suitable for dogs of all ages (after weaning) and is especially useful during times of stress.
When taking care of your puppy, you must be well-versed in when it’s the perfect time to start weaning them and afterward, giving them supplements. This will help ensure their success during their puppy days and beyond.