Want to know how much to feed a Blue Heeler puppy? We’ve got you covered!
This Australian Cattle Dog puppy feeding guide tracks the changing needs of your pup as they grow and develop.
We’ll take you from the very first day to that all important transition to grown up food.
And help you give your puppy the very best start in life
Your starting point for the quantity of food you need to give your Blue Heeler puppy is printed on the side of every packet of commercial puppy food.
The instructions are often in tiny print so you may need your reading glasses! These guides are helpful but they are only a guide.
Before you tip the food into a bowl it’s important to note that the quantity quoted is for the whole day! And that much of your puppy’s food may be eaten during training sessions.
Quantities – Understanding The Instructions
Most puppy food brands will have a printed table on the packet with several columns and rows. Each column will probably represent a different breed size. This size refers to the adult version of the breed, not how big your puppy is now.
The Blue Heeler is a medium sized breed so that is the column you need to focus on.
Each row will then represent your puppy at different weights. So you’ll change the total quantity of their daily ration as they grow.
Weighing Your Blue Heeler Puppy
You might find it helpful to weigh your puppy occasionally.
You can do this by weighing yourself on the bathroom scales without your puppy.
Then weighing yourself with your puppy in your arms. And subtracting the first weight from the second.
These are the important things to remember.
- You must divide the daily ration into several portions (see below)
- The manufacturer’s estimate is too much for some puppies (and too little for others)
- It’s important to use your puppy’s food for training purposes
- Take veterinary advice if necessary
Puppy Portion Sizes At Different Ages
We offer the correct portions sizes by dividing the daily total into several small meals.
Dividing the daily ration into enough portions is important because puppies have small stomachs and are prone to diarrhoea if they eat too much at one sitting.
On the day you bring your 8 week old puppy home he or she will probably need four portions of food per day. You can then decrease the number of portions as follows
- 8 weeks – four portions
- 12 weeks – three portions
- 6 months – two portions
You should increase the number of portions (but NOT the quantity of food) if your puppy has loose stools. Consult your vet if these persist for more than twelve hours or so.
We cannot print exact quantities here because every brand is different. Cheaper brands tend to have more fillers and puppies may need larger quantities of those
Quantities of food for expensive brands may look very tiny to begin with! But if your puppy looks well fed, then he is almost certainly getting enough to eat.
You can read more about what a well fed puppy looks like below
At 8 weeks a puppy could be eating at
Of course the exact times are up to you, but you should avoid feeding a puppy late in the evening if you want to get a good night’s sleep!
Puppies that dine late, are more likely to need to poop in the night.
Using Food In Training
Puppies have a lot to learn and the best training methods all use food. Especially in the early stages.
While we often refer to this food as ‘training treats’ The very best food to use for training is your puppy’s own kibble.
Simply weigh out your puppy’s portions for the day in advance and take any training treats from this rations. This ensures that your puppy is getting a balanced diet.
People sometimes worry that there isn’t enough food left to put in the puppy’s bowl after training.
It doesn’t matter if you use up nearly all of the puppy’s food this way. It won’t do them any harm not to eat from a bowl.
Check out our online training program for more information
Selecting the Best Food for a Blue Heeler Puppy
You’ll want to ensure that your Blue Heeler puppy gets proper nutrients and the food they need to grow into a strong and muscular adult.
How can you be sure that the food you’ve selected is the best food for a Blue Heeler puppy? Check the label!
First, you’ll want to confirm that the food you’ve purchased is endorsed by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).
The AAFCO ensures that pet food is complete and balance. Food endorsed by the association should have a label on the pack.
Second, you’ll want to make sure you are purchasing the correct food for the appropriate life stage. In this case, the food should be specifically labelled ‘for puppies’.
Puppies require specific amounts of nutrients and feeding a Blue Heeler puppy adult food will not be beneficial to its health and development.
Third, check the ingredients. You’ll want to be sure that the food you’ve selected is full of high-quality nutrients and free of fillers.
A growing Blue Heeler puppy has specific nutritional needs and puppies need ample amounts of animal protein and fat.
For example, a high-quality puppy food will have at least 22.5 percent protein.
What Type of Food Should My Blue Heeler Puppy Eat?
Kibbles? Wet food? Raw food? There are many options to choose from when it comes to the best food types for you Blue Heeler puppy.
Kibble is the most popular type of food given to puppies. So, this would be a great choice for a Blue Heeler puppy as well.
Check the label to make sure you are selecting the appropriate life stage with high-quality nutrients.
Cheap kibble tends to have less nutritional value. You’ll need to feed a puppy more kibble to get the right amount of nutrients, which is undesirable.
If your Blue Heeler puppy is on a kibble-only diet, make sure they are drinking a lot of water to stay hydrated.
Is Wet Food Right For a Blue Heeler Puppy?
Wet dog food, or canned food, can be more appealing to Blue Heeler puppies since it is a softer transition from their mother’s milk.
It’s also a lot easier for teething Blue Heeler puppies to ingest.
However, it does not provide the dental benefits that crunching on hard kibbles does.
Many dog owners feed a combination of wet and kibble food.
As with other food types, check the label to make sure the wet food you choose for you Blue Heeler puppy has ample nutrients and is the proper life stage.
Is Raw Food the Best Food For a Blue Heeler Puppy?
Raw food diets for dogs are gaining popularity. It is a good option as long as you know the benefits and risks of selecting this diet for a Blue Heeler puppy.
Our guide to Raw Food for Puppies provides excellent information if you are interested in choosing this for your Blue Heeler puppy.
High-energy Blue Heeler puppies will burn calories quickly. They need roughly twice as many calories per pound of their own weight as an adult dog.
This fuels their games and their growth!
Your Blue Heeler puppy will grow most in the first six months. Then, their growth rate will slow down until they reach their full adult weight around their first birthday.
From Puppy to Adult Mealtimes
Multiple, small meals each day are best for Blue Heeler puppies. Start with four meals throughout the day.
After you Blue Heeler puppy reaches six months old, you can feed them twice a day.
After about one-year, a Blue Heeler puppy is considered an adult and can switch to adult food.
Your puppy should still receive regular vet checks through their first year of life, and this is a good opportunity to chat about what they’re eating too.
Your vet can help you tweak and fine tune how much to feed a Blue Heeler puppy for optimum healthy growth.
Keeping a Blue Heeler Puppy at a Healthy Weight
Free feeding is not recommended for puppies since they tend to overeat.
Overfeeding a puppy or a dog with at any life stage can put stress on its joints. Blue Heelers are prone to joint disorders and excess weight can trigger these conditions.
Make sure your puppy stays at a healthy weight. Consult Blue Heeler puppy growth and weight charts to make sure you are on the right track.
Run your hands over your puppy, you should just be able to feel ribs if you press firmly. You should not be able to feel the knobbles on your puppy’s spine and they should have a waist.
If you are worried that your Blue Heeler puppy is eating too much or too little, check with your veterinarian.
You can also use a body condition chart to determine if your Blue Heeler puppy is at a healthy weight.
Blue Heeler Puppy Care
A Blue Heeler puppy will be eager and active.
However, since Blue Heelers are prone to joint disorders, you should monitor and limit your puppy’s physical activity to protect their growing joints.
Because their working instinct is so strong, a Blue Heeler puppy requires consistent training and socialization.
Blue Heeler puppies will have a natural tendency to “nip,” which is what makes them such successful herding dogs.
You’ll need to teach your Blue Heeler puppy not to nip. Or when it is appropriate to nip if they’ll be used as a herding dog.
The Australian Cattle Dog Club of America recommends that Blue Heeler puppies stay with their littermates for 7–8 weeks to help teach some bite inhibition.
Our Puppy Care Guide has a lot of information that will help you through a Blue Heeler puppy’s developmental stages.
Feeding Your Blue Heeler Puppy
The right amount of nourishing food will help your Blue Heeler puppy grow healthy and strong.
Beyond wondering how much to feed a Blue Heeler puppy and what kind of food, what other questions do you have?
Head to the comments section to ask some questions or share some info about what your Blue Heeler eats.
References and Further Reading
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