All Lab and Golden Retrievers puppies will nurture from their mother until they reach the age of seven weeks. Once they reach the age of three weeks, they should be fed with puppy food, which you should soak and mix into a warm grubby compound. This way, it resembles the food they get from their mother, and they will learn quickly how their food tastes and how they should eat it.
Once you bring your puppy home, you should always make sure that you use the same food that he has become accustomed to. The breeder will start training the puppy with food, and it’s up to you to ensure that he gets the food he has come to know. Retriever puppies have very delicate stomachs, and they can be very receptive to any changes in their food.
When you first bring your new Retriever puppy home, he or she may not be too interested in eating for the first few days. Being in a new home can be stressful for the puppy, which is why you shouldn’t force him to eat. The puppy will also realize that he doesn’t have competition at the food bowl, because he is away from his litter. You shouldn’t worry if he doesn’t immediately eat, as it will take him some time.
Once your puppy has slept through the night, you should take him outside and let him relieve himself, then bring him in and give him some food. You should also plan feedings throughout the day, such as the morning, middle of the day, then at night. Once you have planned feedings, you should make sure that you stick to this plan so that your puppy will get used to it.
Keep in mind that the last feeding of the day doesn’t necessarily need to be set in stone. You should always aim to feed your puppy at least a half an hour before you head to bed, so that you can take him outside after eating. If you time it just right every night, you can feed your Lab or Golden, take him out to use the bathroom, and still have plenty of time to get ready for bed. At night, when you sleep, you should have puppy pads or newspapers in an area that your Retriever is familiar with so he can use the bathroom if he can’t get you to take him out.
First the first few weeks, your Retriever will eat a little bit of the food. Once he has reached 8 weeks of age, he should be on dry food with a little bit of warm water added to it. The best way to feed is to keep adding a little bit of warm water to the food, and let the pup eat until he is finished. If you continue to do this throughout feedings, your Lab or Golden will begin to eat all of his portion.
Keep in mind that you should never rush him, or change anything about the way he feeds. Retrievers will eat their share, although it will take them a bit of time to develop the proper eating habits. As the puppy gets older, his stomach will grow and he will begin to eat more. During this time, you won’t need to add any water to his food. Lab and Golden Retrievers are a truly unique breeds, a breed that loves to be fed – and craves attention. If you stick to your plan when your puppy is little – he will be a healthy eater as he gets older.
Human Food For Your Lab and Golden Retriever
A lot of people wonder what type of human food they should feed their Lab or Golden. Even though many prefer to stick with dog food and only dog food, there are certain types of human food that Retrievers love – and is actually good for them. Retriever’s crave attention as we all know – and when they watch you eat it neverhurts to give them a bite – as long as you know what they should and shouldn’t consume with their diets.
For your Golden’s health, feeding him foods such as chicken, raw vegetables, turkey, brown rice, fruits, and oatmeal are always great. Even though we think of these type foods as “human food”, they are actually good for many animals as well. All dogs have taste buds and noses, meaning that they get very excited when they see you with food.
If your Laab or Golden Retriever runs to the refrigerator when you open it up, he’s trying to tell you that he smells something good. Even though he may run to the refrigerator, he isn’t begging for food as many think, he is simply wanting to have some real food. Once your Golden starts to do this, you should give him some of what he wants. Although most real food is great for Lab’s and Golden’s, there are some that aren’t quite so good.
By: Ron Soles