When Is It Okay to Switch My Puppies From 3 Feedings a Day to 2 Feedings a Day ?

They are currently both just over 4 months. One pup is a german sheppard rottweiler mix and the other one is a west highland terrier.

Puppies are usually switched from 3 meals a day to 2 meals a day at 6 months of age. This depends on the individual dog's weight of course. If he needs more food, then he should have it. Some people switch to one meal a day when the pup reaches 1 year of age; however, it's actually better to split up their meals in two. Their stomach will digest two meals easier, and they won't have a tendency to gulp their only meal because they're famished. Another thing is, for the large breeds, pups should be switched over to adult dog food rather than puppy food at about 4 months of age. This lessens the fast growth that commonly results in orthopedic problems later on. Our Edenrock collie puppy was started on ProPlan Puppy, then switched to ProPlan Adult at 4 months, plus plain yogurt non-fat yogurt, and plain non-fat cottage cheese. She's 44 lbs now, with a gorgeous coat, nice muscle tone, and no excess puppy fat.

Tags:
  • krystal

    i dont see anthing wrong with that…it does depend on how your puppy is acting. you should try and if its not comfortable and you see changes in a bad way..the vet should be involved.
    References :

  • Sarah

    When they are 1 year old.
    References :

  • m21

    Twice a day should be fine. I rescued my dog when she was 3.5 months and she was already eating two meals a day. Just make sure to go by the guidelines on the feeding instructions on the bag of food.

    Usually after 2-3 months they can go to twice a day.
    References :

  • Nikki T

    It really depends on the dogs themselves… but at that age I would still be feeding 3 times a day, especially for the larger puppy. Personally, around 10-12 months I ease into a twice a day schedule for larger dogs. All my little dogs (fosters mostly, my dogs are larger dogs) get 3 feeding a day, all of the time.
    References :
    Work in Rescue

  • sun_and_moon_1973

    Pay attention to how much they eat in a 30 minute time span. If they are still eating pretty good then I would wait another month or so. Pups will gradually slow down their eating when they get full. Try taking the food away after 30 minutes and see if they are still interested in it.. Smaller dogs need smaller more frequent meals while bigger breeds can do just fine with being fed twice a day.
    References :
    Mom to a Keeshond,Pit mix,GreatDane and Chihuahua

  • Victoria S

    Puppies are usually switched from 3 meals a day to 2 meals a day at 6 months of age. This depends on the individual dog's weight of course. If he needs more food, then he should have it. Some people switch to one meal a day when the pup reaches 1 year of age; however, it's actually better to split up their meals in two. Their stomach will digest two meals easier, and they won't have a tendency to gulp their only meal because they're famished. Another thing is, for the large breeds, pups should be switched over to adult dog food rather than puppy food at about 4 months of age. This lessens the fast growth that commonly results in orthopedic problems later on. Our Edenrock collie puppy was started on ProPlan Puppy, then switched to ProPlan Adult at 4 months, plus plain yogurt non-fat yogurt, and plain non-fat cottage cheese. She's 44 lbs now, with a gorgeous coat, nice muscle tone, and no excess puppy fat.
    References :

  • Beth K

    Many people advocate 3 feedings per day until the dog is at least 6 – 9 months old. I usually have my young dogs on 2 feedings per day with a small portion of food as a treat just before I go to bed, and a few kibbles or healthy treats at a time for training rewards throughout the day by the time they are 5 months. They are getting two actual meals, but are eating small amounts in addition throughout the day. Young dogs burn calories rapidly, and if they go too long without food they can suffer growth problems, low blood sugar, etc. If your dogs are only getting dog food and only eat at meal time, then 3 feedings should be continued for awhile yet. If your pups are getting food here and there through rewards, training treats, etc. you can probably go to two actual feedings per day safely.

    It also depends on how much food you need to feed at a time. If you are feeding a QUALITY food so your pups don't require a whole lot per day, you may be fine with two feedings. If the food is less than great, you want to do three feedings (and look into a better food) since the dog will need to eat so much more, and dividing a large amount of food into only 2 servings may mean the dog eats too much at one time and can't utilize the food properly. A puppy's stomach is not very large, and the dog can easily be harmed by eating too much at once.

    Your GSD/Rottie pup is also a mix of two breeds prone to gastric torsion volvulus or "bloat", a deadly problem where the stomach rapidly fills with gas then twists on itself. Bloat is a true emergency and many dogs don't survive even with prompt surgical intervention. You reduce the risk of your pup becoming affected by this terrible problem if you feed smaller, more frequent meals rather than one or two large meals for the life of the dog. Also, prevent your dog from drinking large amounts of water before or after meals, and restrict his exercise and activity for at least two hours after a meal.
    References :
    25 years dog owner/trainer/exhibitor and former vet tech