When you receive your new French Bulldog puppy, he/she will be accustomed to eating 3 times a day (morning, noon, and evening). Because we feed more than one puppy at the same time (the rest of their litter mates), we put a large bowl full of their puppy food in their kennel and let them eat until they are satisfied. Once all of them walk away from the bowl we know they are done, and we take it away.
Puppies are changing and growing rapidly, and they need to eat more frequently (at least 3 times a day) to provide all the proper nourishment and nutrition for their rapidly growing bodies. Make sure your Frenchie always has access to fresh water through out the day.
Once your Frenchie is older, you can put your puppy on a twice a day, or even a once a day schedule. Your vet can help you determine the frequency and amount you should be feeding your Frenchie based on the needs of your Frenchie, size (over/under weight), activity level, etc. You can either feed him/her on a set schedule (which will help you know when he needs to poop) or you can have food available at all times and let them eat what and when they want, as long as they do not put on excessive weight. If they do put on excessive weight, you will have to monitor what they eat daily.
There should be a guide on the food bag that tells you how much to feed the puppy at each weight. This is only a rough guide depending on activity level, metabolism, etc., and you may need to decrease or increase the quantity based on how quickly your pup is gaining weight and whether he/she finishes all the food at one time. It’s hard to say exactly how much your Frenchie pup will need, but the amounts on the bag will give you an idea of where to start.
You should use a puppy formula until your Frenchie is at least 1 year old. While he/she may look like a fully grown dog at 8 or 9 months, and may have actually reached its ultimate adult weight, your puppy is still finishing his/her physical development and bone formation and needs those extra calories and nutrients. When they are 1 year they should transitioned to a high quality, small or medium dog, adult food.
We now feed all of our new puppies Medium Starter from Royal Canin (available from PetSmart and other reputable pet stores, as well as directly from the company. If you can’t find Medium Starter, Mini Starter or even Maxi Starter will substitute fine, and we couldn’t be happier with the results. We strongly encourage each of our valued clients to use this wonderful puppy chow for at least the first month after you receive your puppy. Puppies are stressed when they are taken from their mothers and litter mates and sent to their new home, so anything that can be done to reduce further stress is important, and this means not abruptly changing their diet.
If all is going well with your puppy after being in your home for a month or so, you can start transitioning over to another high quality, small or medium dog puppy chow if you choose. If you plan on changing dog food brands we advise making the change gradually so the sudden change does not cause any irritation to the digestive tract, which may result in loose stools and diarrhea. If you decide to change brands of dog food, mix the new brand with your existing brand on a 1×2 ratio. If he/she tolerated this well, mix half and half for a few days. If he/she is still doing well, mix the new brand to the old brand on a 2×1 ratio for a few days. If things are still going well after a few days, switch over completely to the new brand.
We strongly recommend a high protein (at least 27%), high fat (at least 15%), and high fiber dry puppy chow that has meat as the first ingredient and rice as the main filler. We try to avoid wheat and corn fillers as they can be harder on your puppy’s digestive system and can also make him/her gassy. Costco (Kirkland brand) has a high quality chow meeting our recommendations at a very reasonable price, but you can purchase high quality puppy food from any pet shop, vet’s office, Wal-Mart, IFA, etc. Some puppies are allergic to grains, so a grain free chow should be provided to them, and a few even need to be put on a raw diet.
If you are feeding your Frenchie a high quality small or medium adult dog food (if he/she is over 1 year) or puppy chow (if he/she is under a year), you can probably get by without special supplements. However, to be sure that all of our dogs are getting all of the nutrients they need to maintain strong, healthy bodies and good coats, we have started giving our dogs NuVet tablets, and it has made a noticeable improvement in our kennel, especially with our pregnant and whelping females.
We were told about this supplement from a breeder friend of ours who obtained fantastic results in her kennel by using this supplement every day with each of her dogs. She said she solved several problems (from skin rashes to low milk production in mothers, along with several other nagging health issues) when she started giving each dog in her kennel one of these supplements daily. We believe you and your Frenchie will also benefit from these outstanding supplements which you can find detailed under “Great Products”. When you use the number provided you can purchase these supplements at a significantly discounted rate versus the retail cost.