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How Much to Feed a Lab Puppy

Labrador puppies need different amounts of food as they grow from puppyhood to adulthood. Find out how much to feed your lab puppy here.

When your puppy is at 8 weeks or younger, it needs to feed on its mother’s milk or puppy formula. Once it reaches 6 weeks of age, you can start feeding your Lab puppy dog food. How much to feed your puppy will depend on its age and weight.

What to Feed Your Labrador Puppy

Most veterinarians recommend feeding your lab puppy with high-quality dry food. There are several brands that offer puppy food that can provide your Lab puppy with all of the nutrients that they need every day.

It’s recommended that you feed your puppy kibble because it’s easily accessible, easy to store, and easy to portion for your Labrador puppy. Dry food is complete, balanced, and contains the correct amount of important nutrients for your puppy.

It’s also a good idea to feed your puppy kibble because it’s great on its own. If you’re feeding your Lab puppy, it’s best not to feed it anything else because that can upset the nutritional balance that kibble provides. Kibble lasts much longer than canned food or raw food so you don’t have to worry about it going bad or stale.

Kibble also promotes oral health because it strengthens your puppy’s teeth with its solid structure. Kibble normally has an abrasive texture that has a natural cleaning effect on your puppy’s teeth.

When choosing a brand of kibble for your puppy, you should lean toward brands that have formulas that are specifically for Labradors. Your puppy’s kibble should have the right amount of protein, calcium, carbohydrates, and fat to promote healthy and stable growth.

Below are some of the best brands of kibble that you can get for your lab puppy:

  • Royal Canin is the best and most highly recommended brand of kibble for Labrador puppies. This is because they have a formula that’s specifically made for the breed. This brand of kibble meets the nutritional needs of Labrador puppies from ages 8 weeks to 15 months old. It also features a unique shape that helps Labrador puppies eat more slowly to avoid choking or bloating.
  • Wellness is perfect for Labrador puppies. It’s made with healthy proteins and grains that make up a balanced diet for your puppy. This kibble is formulated to promote brain development, a healthy immune system, and healthy skin and coat.
  • Hill’s Science is a brand of kibble is also highly recommended by veterinarians. It’s made with a formula that has the right amount of calcium for optimum bone growth for large breed puppies. It also supports healthy brain and eye development for large puppies. It’s made in the United States with high-quality ingredients from all over the world. This brand of kibble is also great for Lab puppy owners that are on a tight budget because it has a lower cost than other brands.

Raw Feeding

Another option for feeding your Lab puppy is providing it with a raw feeding diet. Raw feeding consists of raw meat, edible bones, animal organs, fruits, and vegetables. This is a popular type of feeding that some pet owners prefer because it closely resembles what a dog would be eating in the wild.

Raw feeding pet owners would argue that this is the best and healthiest way to feed your puppy. However, taking this path is a lot more time-consuming and requires more effort than feeding your Lab puppy kibble.

If you opt to put your Lab puppy on a raw feeding diet, you must do plenty of research to figure out the best way to feed it. You will need a deep understanding of your Lab puppy’s nutritional needs to know just exactly what to feed your puppy and how much to feed it. This is important because a Lab puppy goes through rapid periods of growth.

How Often to Feed Your Labrador Puppy

It’s important that you don’t feed your puppy too much because this can easily lead to an upset stomach and diarrhea. To avoid upsetting your puppy’s stomach, you should be dividing their daily food intake into several small meals.

Dividing your Lab puppy’s food into small meals will make them easier to digest and allow them to have a stable amount of energy throughout the day. For large breeds like a Labrador Retriever, you should be feeding them 4 times a day when they’re 3 months old and below. Once they’re 3 to 6 months old, you can bring it down to 4 meals a day. At 6 months old and above, your Lab puppy can have its meals 2 times a day.

A good rule of thumb is to space out your Lab puppy’s meals evenly. Their meals should be 3 hours apart when they’re eating 4 meals a day. 4 hours apart for 3 meals a day, and 6 to 7 hours apart for two meals a day.

It’s all good practice to avoid feeding your Lab puppy in the 2 to 3 hours before bedtime to avoid them feeling the need to go out or go potty in the middle of the night. If your puppy is struggling with soft stool or diarrhea, frequent small meals should remedy it.

Labrador Puppy Feeding Chart

Puppy agePuppy weightQuantity per dayMeals per dayQuantity per meal
2 to 3 months15 to 18 lbs1 1/4 cups41/3 cups
4 to 5 months24 to 26 lbs1 3/4 cups31/2 cups
6 months onwards50 to 60 lbs3 cups21 1/2 cups

This feeding chart is based on several feeding charts from different brands of dry food. To be sure if you’re feeding the right amount of food to your Lab puppy, you can check with the specific brand that you choose. You can also consult with your local veterinarian to decide on the healthy amount for your Lab puppy.

Keeping Your Labrador Puppy at the Right Weight

As your Lab puppy grows, it’s important that you keep it at the right weight. Your Lab puppy shouldn’t be getting too fat or too thin during its primary growing stages. Although there are recommended amounts to feed your Lab puppy, you should have some leeway.

Depending on how much your Lab puppy weighs, you should decrease or increase his food intake to make sure that it is at the right weight. Different elements can affect your Lab puppy’s weight such as how much exercise it gets and its genes.

The most common problem that Lab puppies face is becoming overweight. Although Lab puppies are adorable when they’re on the chubby end of the scale, they shouldn’t become too round. If you are unsure about the right weight for your Lab puppy, your veterinarian should be able to answer any of your questions.

Final Thoughts

Feeding a Lab puppy surprisingly requires more thought than you might expect. Labrador puppies go through a rapid rate of growth from the age of 2 months to 6 months. During this critical period, you must make sure that it’s eating the right amount of food and maintaining the right weight.

It’s recommended that you feed your Lab puppy high-quality kibble in small but frequent meals. Lab puppies that are 2 to 3 months old normally need to eat 4 meals a day. Once they reach 4 to 5 months of age, they can start eating just 3 meals a day. From 6 months of age until adulthood, your Lab puppy should be eating 2 meals a day.

It’s important that you do your research in figuring out the right amount of food to feed your Lab puppy. You can find all the information you need by doing research online, reading up on different kibble brands, and consulting with your puppy’s veterinarian.