No matter what kind of dog you have, there are a few things that they should be getting. Proper exercise (lots of walks) and diet are the foundations of any good growth development plan. Poodles are no different from any other breed in that regard.
Most Poodles are smaller in size (most of the Poodles you find will be medium-sized). By having any even slight deviations in diet, it can make them look under- or over-fed. There are a few elements to the proper diet that Poodle owners should be aware of.
Basics and Making Changes
Poodles have naturally small mouths, which means that they should be eating out of a shallow bowl. You want to make sure that they have an easy time eating. Something deep and narrow may make it too difficult for them to get to their food.
Another tip for feeding them is to make sure that there are smooth, round edges. Bowls that have sharper edges can potentially cut them. Stainless steel is always preferable to plastic bowls as the latter can chip, crack, and break.
If you aren’t satisfied with your dog’s current food, you may be inclined to switch foods. Like with any other breed, switching is a gradual thing. Making a quick change to your Poodle’s diet can result in myriad health problems.
If you got them from a breeder, find out what food they were giving your Poodle. Switching to a brand that you believe in is fine, just make sure that it is done gradually so that their digestive system has a chance to adapt to that new food. Generally speaking, this takes about a month to complete.
In the first week, it should be ¾ old food versus ¼ new food. By week 2, it is half and half. By week 3, it is ¼ old food mixed with ¾ new food. By the fourth week, they should be eating nothing but the new food.
How Much to Feed Your Poodle?
Let’s get down to “how much should a Poodle eat?” The amount depends on a number of factors such as metabolism, age, and activity level. That said, there is a good basic rule of thumb to follow when it comes to feeding your Poodle.
A standard Poodle will eat anywhere from 1 ½ to 3 cups of high-quality food each day, generally over a pair of meals. Miniature Poodles, meanwhile, will top out at a cup of food each day over two meals. Finally, Toy Poodles will get ¼ to ½ cup over those two meals each day.
You can deviate slightly from that recommended daily amount or meal frequency should you notice that your Poodle is starting to look under- or overweight.
Frequency of Meals
Another aspect of “how much should a Poodle eat” depends on their age. Puppies, ranging from birth to three months, will be free-fed. This is where you leave food in their bowls and allow them to eat when they want to. This will change going forward as continuing with free-feeding can lead to obesity if it isn’t checked properly.
When they reach three months, the meals will be over three separate feedings per day. Remember, the quantity depends on the type of Poodle that you have. They will have the same feedings from three months to roughly a year (or adulthood).
When they reach adulthood, they should have two feedings per day. This is what they will stay with for the rest of their life. If you free-feed your dog, make sure that they have access to fresh food all day, wash the dish, and change out the food each time.
What you feed your Poodle is just as important as how much. If you go the homemade or raw route, then make sure that they have lean meat, organs (liver, brain, kidney), sweet potato, veggies, barley, fruits, eggs, and quinoa.
Quality animal protein should be one of the most crucial aspects of anything that you feed your Poodle. Healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, and carbohydrates will follow, though they can vary depending on your dog’s specific needs.
Make sure that you avoid things such as coffee, garlic, onions, caffeine, and chocolate as well as nuts, grapes, raisins, rawhide bones, and spicy foods. These can have drastic negative effects on the digestive tract of your Poodle.
When in doubt, consult either the breeder or your vet in order to answer any uncertainties that you may have regarding their diet, eating habits, and health. It takes time to make these changes, so implement them slowly if you do make changes.
Poodles are known as “dainty” dogs and they require a specific diet in order to keep their bodies healthy. Make sure not to change their diets drastically in short order as it can have a negative impact on their digestive systems.
With the different breeds of Poodles out there, you need to know which breed you have in order to choose the proper quantity and frequency. By the time they hit adulthood, they will be at two meals per day for good. Make slight adjustments if you notice that they are either under- or overweight.