How Much To Feed Canine

by Aishah
(Birmingham, AL)

Reader Question: How To Know How Much To Feed Jack Russell

How much do I feed my 7 week old JRT? When should I increase how much I feed and when should I switch to an adult food?

Veterinarian Responds To Reader Question Regarding How Much To Feed Canine


All good questions. Use the information presented on the puppy food label as a starting point to determine how much you should feed. Different foods have wildly different caloric densities so there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. A 7 week old JRT should eat three times a day, so divide the total amount in 3 and offer it roughly every 8 hours. In a few weeks, you should be able to feed your pup twice rather than three times daily.

As your pup grows, he’ll need more food. Continue using the label as a guide, but watch his body condition score to fine tune the amount you offer. You should be able to feel his ribs with just the lightest of touches but not see them (except maybe the last one or two when he moves). He should have a noticeable waist and abdominal tuck, but not appear emaciated. Since you’ll be seeing your veterinarian every three or four weeks for vaccines, you can always check with him or her regarding whether your pup is too thin, too fat, or just right.

I generally recommend switching to an adult food when JRTs are one year old, but your vet can also let you know whether this is appropriate for your dog when you get closer to that time.

Have fun with your new dog!

Jennifer Coates, DVM

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