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Nursing mother protein level

August 12th, 2006, 12:01 PM
My friend breeds minpins and her vet has the nursing mother on 24% protein, or maybe 23 even. Is this enough??? I thought puppies need more in their milk.

August 12th, 2006, 01:39 PM
I think it's too low. It should be more like 28 to 35% protein. I've always heard that a pregnant/nursing dog should be fed puppy food during that time. :dog: :pawprint:

August 12th, 2006, 04:04 PM
I think it's too low. It should be more like 28 to 35% protein. I've always heard that a pregnant/nursing dog should be fed puppy food during that time. :dog: :pawprint:

that is what I said!!

I need some links or some research to show her, can't seem to find any. :(

August 13th, 2006, 06:00 PM
I'll see if I can find some. Prin's our food guru, so when she reads this, she'll probably be able to help. :D

August 14th, 2006, 03:17 PM
This is all I could find:

Taken from website:

What should I feed my pregnant/nursing dog?

If you didn't start a vitamin-plus-mineral supplement before breeding, start it now. Do not over-supplement, as that may be harmful to the developing puppies. Some breeders add cottage cheese or a cooked egg to the diet on alternate days for extra protein. If you are adding multiple supplements to the diet, make a list of all the ingredients, gather nutritional labels, and take everything to your veterinarian to make sure it is balanced. Over-supplementing with calcium during pregnancy predisposes the bitch to eclampsia.

The bitch should eat a premium adult food prior to pregnancy and for the first few weeks of pregnancy. Starting the fourth week of pregnancy, begin adding a premium puppy food to her diet. Each week, increase the amount of the puppy food and decrease the amount of adult food, so when she is in her final week of pregnancy, she is eating all puppy food. Increase the frequency of daily meals to three by mid-pregnancy. She may need to eat small meals every 3-4 hours during the last week of pregnancy as the puppies continue to take up more room (remember, most fetal growth occurs in the last two weeks of gestation).

Within 2-3 days of giving birth, the bitch's appetite will dramatically increase to 2-4 times her pre-pregnancy intake. She will need a near-constant supply of a high-quality puppy food and water to maintain her weight and health while feeding the puppies. She should still have her supplements of vitamin/mineral tablet, cottage cheese, and cooked egg. If her weight is properly maintained, she should not look gaunt or thin. Ideally, she should weigh the same at the time of weaning as she did when she was bred.
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Taken from website:

Protein requirements

Protein requirements vary from species to species and can vary greatly during the rapid growth stages and for elderly animals with compromised kidneys. I will explain some of the special circumstances that require altered levels of protein but as a rule the following levels apply.

Species and Growth Stage Recommended Protein % Recommended Fat %
Puppy 28%

Adult dog 18%

Performance dog 25%

Racing sled dog 35%

Lactating dog 28%

Pregnant and lactating dogs may need to be fed puppy chow to give them the necessary protein. Sick, weak, and debilitated animals also need extra protein. Animals with kidney disease may need to be on a protein-restricted, but high biological value diet to lessen the effects of the kidney disease.