Whatever you choose, Kibble or RAW, your puppy requires consistent meals of appropriate dog food that will provide adequate and ample nutrition to meet the needs of a LARGE BREED PUPPY. To limit damage to growing bones and joints, your puppy must not become overweight during its growth phase (from the age of 3-12 months old). However, your puppy must be fed enough on a daily basis to ensure proper growth (not stunted due to limited nutrition).
Tamaskan Dogs tend to have notoriously sensitive stomachs. This is primarily due to their arctic breed ancestry, which historically survived on a high protein, low carbohydrate diet. If you choose to feed RAW and are planning to make it yourself, please be sure you do your research so your puppy/dog is receiving proper nutrition. Here is a good reference for RAW feeding:
Generally speaking, rice is relatively easy to digest but it only really serves to “bulk up” the meal and it doesn’t provide much nutritional value for canines. That being said, cooked chicken and rice is an easy-to-digest meal for when your pup is sick or recovering from surgery, for instance. Sweet potato is a good alternative for rice.
Additional vitamins are not recommended for puppies as all top-quality dog food brands will contain the necessary daily amounts. Supplementary calcium pills must be avoided as excess calcium destroys the cartilage between growing bones, causing long-term damage and also leading to excess calcium deposits. All top-quality dog food brands contain sufficient levels of calcium to meet the requirements of a growing puppy.
Young puppies only have small stomachs so it is important that they are fed several times per day, every few hours…
- 2 – 4 months old: 4 small meals per day
- 4 – 6 months old: 3 small meals per day
- 6 – 9 months old: 3 medium meals per day
- 9 – 12 months old: 2 medium meals per day
- 12+ months old: 1-2 large meals per day
Young puppies only have small stomachs so it is important that they get the right amout of food for each meal, which will vary according to the individual puppy (male vs female, size, energy level, daily activities, etc)… just like with us humans, some days they will need to eat a bit more and have a voracious appetite while other days they won’t be as hungry. The following is a rough/approximate guideline, which you can adapt accordingly:
- 2 – 3 months old: 200-300g per day (50-75g per meal x4)
- 3 – 4 months old: 250-350g per day (65-90g per meal x4)
- 4 – 5 months old: 300-400g per day (100-135g per meal x3)
- 5 – 6 months old: 350-450g per day (120-150g per meal x3)
- 6 – 7 months old: 400-500g per day (135-170g per meal x3)
- 7 – 8 months old: 450-550g per day (150-185g per meal x3)
- 8 – 9 months old: 500-600g per day (170-200g per meal x3)
- 9 – 12 months old: 550-650g per day (275-325g per meal x2)
- 12+ months old: approx 500g per day (250g per meal x2)
Adult dogs generally don’t need to eat quite so much as growing teenagers
Of course, the quantity will vary according to the individual needs of each puppy with respect to: size (height/weight), energy level, amount of daily activity/exercise, daily appetite, etc. Some Tamaskan puppies are naturally slim and athletic with lots of energy that they burn off quickly (so they will need to be fed larger quantities) while other Tamaskan puppies are naturally chubbier and less active with less daily exercise (so they will need to be fed smaller quantities).
On some days Tamaskan Dogs will have a bigger appetite than on other days… influencing factors include weather and climate as many Tamaskan Dogs don’t like to eat much during the summer when it is very hot outside, but they also tend to have a bigger appetite during the winter when they need the extra fat to keep warm. Moreover, when a female Tamaskan is in heat she will usually eat a bit less and the same is true for male Tamaskans as they can become highly distracted/preoccupied by the hormonal influences; likewise, during gestation/lactation a female Tamaskan will also need to eat substantially more (more than 3x the usual quantity).
Due to sexual dimorphism in the breed, male Tamaskan Dogs often grow significantly larger than female Tamaskan Dogs (depending on the specific bloodline) and usually there is a noticable difference between males and females within each litter. Therefore, generally speaking, male puppies tend to need to eat more than female puppies. Ultimately, like human teenagers, is perfectly normal for juvenile / young adult Tamaskan Dogs to have voracious appetities, particularly while they are going through a growth sput, so it is important to feed according to body condition and take into account any relevant factors, rather than strictly adhere to counting calories / quantity of food.
As a general rule of thumb, it is a good idea to examine your Tamaskan puppy/dog on a daily basis in order to judge (by eye and touch) if your pup is over/underweight and then adjust the daily ration(s) accordingly.