Puppy Diet compared to Adult Diet

Puppies require a specially formulated diet, with higher protein, fat, calcium, and other vitamins and minerals. This is to aid a healthy growth and prevent problems in later years.

The table below shows the AAFCO Dog Food Nutrient Profiles comparison between puppy and adult requirements. It’s worth noting that not all foods conform to this, but thankfully these days most do. Many foods in Australia conform to the American AAFCO standards, and if you see a food labelled as Complete and Balanced then it must conform to the requirements in the table below.

TABLE 1 — AAFCO Dog Food Nutrient Profiles a 

Nutrient Units

DM Basis

Growth and

Reproduction

Minimum

Adult

Maintenance

Minimum

Maximum

Protein

% 22.0 18.0
Arginine % 0.62 0.51
Histidine % 0.22 0.18
Isoleucine % 0.45 0.37
Leucine % 0.72 0.59
Lysine % 0.77 0.63
Methionine-cystine % 0.53 0.43
Phenylalanine-tyrosine % 0.89 0.73
Threonine % 0.58 0.48
Tryptophan % 0.20 0.16
Valine % 0.48 0.39
Fat b % 8.0 5.0
Linoleic acid % 1.0 1.0
Minerals
Calcium % 1.0 0.6 2.5
Phosphorus % 0.8 0.5 1.6
Ca:P ratio 1:1 1:1 2:1
Potassium % 0.6 0.6
Sodium % 0.3 0.06
Chloride % 0.45 0.09
Magnesium % 0.04 0.04 0.3
Iron c mg/kg 80.0 80.0 3000.0
Copper d mg/kg 7.3 7.3 250.0
Manganese mg/kg 5.0 5.0
Zinc mg/kg 120.0 120.0 1000.0
Iodine mg/kg 1.5 1.5 50.0
Selenium mg/kg 0.11 0.11 2.0
Vitamins
Vitamin A IU/kg 5000.0 5000.0 250000.0
Vitamin D IU/kg 500.0 500.0 5000.0
Vitamin E IU/kg 50.0 50.0 1000.0
Thiamine e mg/kg 1.0 1.0
Riboflavin mg/kg 2.2 2.2
Pantothenic acid mg/kg 10.0 10.0
Niacin mg/kg 11.4 11.4
Pyridoxine mg/kg 1.0 1.0
Folic Acid mg/kg 0.18 0.18
Vitamin B12 mg/kg 0.022 0.022
Choline mg/kg 1200.0 1200.0
a Presumes an energy density of 3.5 kcal ME/g DM, based
on the “modified Atwater” values of 3.5, 8.5, and 3.5 kcal/g
for protein, fat, and carbohydrate (nitrogen-free extract, NFE), respectively.
Rations greater than 4.0 kcal/g should be corrected for energy density;
rations less than 3.5 kcal/g should not be corrected for energy.

b Although a true requirement for fat per se has not been
established, the minimum level was based on recognition of fat as a
source of essential fatty acids, as a carrier of fat-soluble vitamins,
to enhance palatability, and to supply an adequate caloric density.

c Because of very poor bioavailability, iron from carbonate
or oxide sources that are added to the diet should not be considered
as components in meeting the minimum nutrient level.

d Because of very poor bioavailability, copper from oxide
sources that are added to the diet should not be considered as components
in meeting the minimum nutrient level.

e Because processing may destroy up to 90 percent of the
thiamine in the diet, allowance in formulation should be made to ensure
the minimum nutrient level is met after processing.

More information is available at the US FDA website.

CLOSE
CLOSE