Common Questions about Feeding Your Dog

Feeding your dog the right nutrients and a complete, balanced diet doesn’t have to be a head-scratcher. Find out how to choose the right dog food, how often to feed your dog, how to handle treats and supplements, and much more.

dog eating out of bowl

How Do I Decide Which Food to Feed?

When deciding which pet food is right for your pet, consider these three factors: your dog’s life stage, lifestyle and overall condition. Life stage refers to whether your dog is a puppy, an adult or a senior. Lifestyle refers to how active or inactive your dog is normally. Condition refers to your dog’s overall health and body weight.

 

How Often Should I Feed My Dog?

Puppies should be fed three times a day from weaning (3 to 6 weeks) to 4 months of age. After 4 months, they should be fed twice a day. Most dogs should continue to be fed twice a day throughout their life, although some pets do well with one feeding.

 

How Much Should I Give My Dog to Eat?

The amount to feed your dog depends on his age, size and activity level. Feeding guidelines, which list the daily-recommended portion, are included on all IAMS™ packages. Start feeding with this amount and adjust according to your pet’s needs. Remember to divide the portion accordingly if you feed more than once a day.

 

What Is The Best Way to Introduce a New Diet to My Dog?

When changing your dog’s diet, it’s important to slowly introduce new food. Start by offering your dog’s daily portion in a ratio of 25% new food to 75% current food. During the next three days, gradually increase the amount of new food and decrease the amount of the old food.

 

Is It Necessary to Feed Both Wet and Dry Food?

Wet food is an excellent treat that can be fed alone or mixed with dry food. Although our wet dog foods are nutritionally complete and balanced, it is not necessary to offer wet food at every feeding. Our dry foods are formulated with high-quality protein sources such as chicken, lamb or fish, and contain all the essential nutrients pets need. The crunchy texture of dry food also promotes healthy teeth and gums, and aids in overall good oral hygiene. In addition, some of our dry dog foods contain a dental enhancement to help block tartar buildup on teeth during and after meals.

dog sitting in field

Will My Dog Be Bored Eating the Same Food All the Time?

No. Boredom with food is a human trait. Dogs are creatures of habit and usually are happy with just one food. Dogs generally eat to meet their energy or nutritional needs. They have very short digestive systems, and if their diet is abruptly or constantly changed, digestive disturbances can occur. Also, constant changes can make a pet a finicky eater.

 

Is It All Right to Moisten Dry Food?

Adding water will not change the nutritional value of a dry pet food. However, once moisture is added, the food should be eaten relatively soon — and any uneaten portion should be discarded to avoid spoilage. Feeding our dogs dry food is usually encouraged because of the benefit to your dog’s dental health.

 

Will It Hurt My Dog If They Eat My Cat’s Food?

Cats and dogs have different nutritional requirements and should not eat each other’s food. For example, cats require a much higher level of taurine in their diet. An occasional venture into each other’s bowls will not be harmful, but is not recommended on a regular basis.

 

How Many Biscuits Can I Feed My Dog Each Day?

Feed approximately two to four small biscuits per cup of food. Keep in mind that when you add biscuits to your dog’s daily diet, this increases his daily calorie intake, so you should reduce the amount of food you feed. Check the calorie content of the biscuit, since biscuits vary in size and formulation.

 

Can I Supplement Your Dog Foods with Vitamins, Minerals, Oils, etc.?

Our foods are nutritionally complete and balanced. Adding vitamins, minerals or oils can offset the balance the food provides. One of the benefits of feeding a high-quality product is that it has been carefully balanced in proper ratios to provide optimal nutrition — nothing needs to be added.

 

How Can I Learn More about Pet Nutrition?

Contact the IAMS Pet Care and Nutrition Specialists toll-free at 1-800-675-3849.