Best Foods For Growing Lab Puppies (Top 5 Choices For 2017)
Puppies are some of the cutest creatures on the planet, and none more so than Lab puppies. Being the owner of one of these puppies can take a lot of effort, but it’s worth it for the amount of love and happiness these little bundles of energy have to provide.
To keep the happiness flowing, you'll want to know what is best for your growing Labrador puppy, which includes getting the best food to suit their diet. That is what we will be helping you with in this article, as we take a look at some of the best puppy food for labs that you can buy right now.
Quick Picks: Top Food Choices For Lab Puppies
What's Different Between Puppy Food For Labs And Regular Puppy Food?
Puppies of a larger breed, such as Labs, will grow much faster and to a bigger size than some breeds such as poodles and chihuahuas. As such, the puppy food that Labs need to eat has to contain more proteins and nutrients than they might get in normal puppy food.
For this reason, it is important when you are a parent of a fur-baby that can become as big as a Lab that you purchase food that is appropriate for them, such as foods specifically made for large breed dogs. This food will provide the dog with the proper nutrition it needs to grow, while still being easier on their stomach and digestive system than adult dog foods would be.
How Do I Choose The Right Puppy Food?
When you start buying food for your Labrador pup, make sure that you get food from a brand that has been approved by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (or AAFCO). Food approved by the AAFCO has undergone numerous feeding trials to assure their quality, meaning they will be safe for pet consumption.
This is important to look for, as not all dog and puppy foods that are sold are tested on actual dogs, meaning there is no way of knowing for certain what effect it can have on a growing puppy. When you buy food with the AAFCO logo on it, you can be guaranteed that the food has been tested on puppies and has been judged to be safe for consumption, as well as has the necessary ingredients to help promote healthy growth for your puppy.
What Else To Consider When Buying Puppy Food For Labs
Besides making sure that the puppy food you wish to buy is approved by the AAFCO, there are a number of other things that you may wish to take into consideration, as follows:
It may surprise you to know that, despite being approved by the AAFCO, not all puppy food gets protein from meat. Instead, a lot of cheaper brands will use other proteins to cut cost, such as plant proteins. These are actually harder for a growing puppy to digest than proteins from meat, so you may want to elect to spend a few extra dollars on premium puppy foods that will use meat as an ingredient.
Going hand-in-hand with the previous paragraph, cheaper puppy food, which contains less protein and nutrients than expensive, premium brands, can be less filling to a pup. The end result is that you end up feeding your puppy more of the cheap food for them to get their fill than you would with the premium brands. This actually ends up putting more of a strain on your wallet in the long run, as you'll find yourself buying the cheaper food way more often than you would like to.
Somewhat less important than ensuring your Lab pup gets its proper diet is making sure that you don't break the bank in doing so. While you may want what is best for your tiny canine, you want to make sure that you can always have the money to care for them. So even when buying premium puppy foods, try to keep an eye out on the price tag and make sure that you are getting the best possible deal.
Our Top 5 Best Foods For Lab Puppy
**Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.
When it comes to food for Lab puppies, one of the most popular brands for the growing dog is Royal Canin. This is due, in large part, to being made to meet many of the demands of a growing puppy’s body.
- Contains a high level of protein.
- Contains fish and Omega oils.
- Is made with probiotics, making digestion easier.
- Food is made mostly of Carbohydrates.
- The food is made using chicken by-products, a low-quality protein.
- Contains several added low-quality ingredients.
Despite being one of the more highly recommended puppy foods for Labs, the Royal Canin Breed Health Lab food still has some issues. For starters is the fact that this food contains a very high level of carbohydrates in comparison with some of its other ingredients, which will likely make your puppy put on excess weight that is not beneficial to their health.
While this may turn you off from this puppy food, there exist plenty of good things about the food to consider as well. For example, the high level of protein in the food makes it great for helping to fill up your dog with healthy nutrients, while probiotics and essential oils help with the digestion and the fur of the puppy.
Royal Canin may not be filled with the highest quality of ingredients, but for the benefits that it does have, it is still a puppy food worth recommending.
For a Lab puppy you are going to want to purchase a food that has everything that is essential to their health and growth. Taste of the Wild is that food, containing ingredients that will meet all your puppy’s feeding needs.
- Primary ingredients are Bison and Lamb Meal, which are high-level proteins.
- Contains Fiber and Beta-carotene.
- Contains a good balance of carbohydrates.
- Has additional vitamins and minerals that help fur and digestion.
- May make your puppy have much larger, and looser, stools.
Taste of the Wild Puppy Food is the one that seems to not only be good for large breed puppies but puppies of all sizes. The proteins used in this food, bison and lamb meal, are high-level and provide your puppy with enough protein to fill them up and build up muscle as well. Adding to the nutritional value of the food is the use of other high-end ingredients that help promote healthy growth, such as salmon oil, chicory root, and sweet potatoes.
If there is any drawback to the food, it is the stools that your puppy can leave behind. In my personal experience, as well as some others that have used Taste of the Wild, when my puppy went number 2, it would leave behind a slimy mess that was no fun to clean up. Thankfully this issue seemed to resolve itself with time.
It's worth the risk of a little mess for a puppy food that gives your little pal all the benefits that Taste of the Wild does for health. If you don't mind a little extra cleanup, then you can't go wrong with this food.
Next up we have Hills Science Large Breed Puppy Food, a puppy food that will be both great for your lab and great for your pocket book.
- Contains a high amount of calcium.
- Has a good amount of fiber.
- Mixed with antioxidants.
- Relatively affordable price.
- The kernels of food are a bit on the large size.
If you want to get the best possible food for your Lab puppy but are also on a strict budget, then Hills Science is the brand of puppy food you are looking for. With a price tag that most dog owners can afford, this is a Premium puppy food that won't break the bank.
For what you pay, you will get a puppy food that is balanced with all the vitamins and nutrients that are important to a Lab puppy's growth. This includes calcium to help build strong bones and antioxidants that will keep your puppy's health in top shape.
If anything negative can be said about this food, it's the kernels of food that the Hills Science brand has are a bit larger than most puppy foods. This may require you to have to break down the pieces a bit for smaller puppies. Aside from this one small caveat, there really isn't much negative to say about the Hills Science Large Breed Puppy food, making it one of the best budget options around.
Everyone wants what is best for their puppy, but sometimes what’s best can be a bit pricey. If money is no object, then you’ll find a lot to love about Orijen Large Breed Puppy Food.
- Uses many high-level proteins.
- Uses Chicken Cartilage as an ingredient.
- Contains a wide range of fruits and vegetables that contain essential nutrients.
- Grain-free puppy food.
- Really expensive. While the ingredients in this puppy food are probably more high-end than many other brands, you better be prepared to pay for it.
If you want to talk about expensive premium puppy foods, then let me tell you about Orijen Large Breed Puppy. This food will cost you a pretty penny on checkout, costing upwards of $100 plus dollars a bag. Needless to say, this isn't a purchase for that faint of heart... or light of wallet.
For the price you pay, you will get some of the best ingredients that you can find in any large breed puppy food around. Using cage-free chickens and turkey for protein, as well as salmon and herring, the protein in this food is something that most humans would like on their dinner table.
Add in the many other vitamins and minerals, which are obtained from other high-end ingredients such as spinach and apples, and you have a puppy meal that is as well rounded as you can find. While the price you pay is high, Orijen is a puppy food that is fit for any Lab puppy's diet.
From yearly dog shows to various pet products, there is a good chance that you may have seen the “Eukanuba” name at some point in time. With this in mind, it should come as no surprise that Eukanuba offers a puppy food perfect for your young Lab.
- Contains a balanced mix of calcium, protein, and fats.
- Made with Omega Oils and Fatty acids.
- Contains glucosamine and chondroitin.
- Flavor may not be to many puppy's liking.
- Packaging is not strong.
Eukanuba is a brand name that is recognized by nearly everyone, so you would expect that their puppy food would be of top quality, which is the case with their Large Breed puppy food. This food contains a perfect balance of all the nutrients a growing puppy needs, including calcium, protein, and fats. This, in addition to omega oils and fatty acids, will help your puppy's body to grow strong and healthy.
Two of the chief nutrients in this puppy food, glucosamine, and chondroitin, are especially important to Lab puppies. As Labradors grow, they tend to develop joint issues such as arthritis due to their larger size. These two nutrients help to give lab puppies healthier joints, which in turn helps to prevent these issues as they get older.
The problem with the food seems to be actually getting your puppy to eat it, as it seems to be an issue that many puppy owners are having. There are a few workarounds that may work, however, such as mixing the food with water or, if needed, a wet puppy food.
Finally, for owners, the best possible thing about this food is the low price point, as this is the cheapest premium food available for lab puppies. If you are on a budget but still want to give your puppy a balanced diet, then Eukanuba is the way to go.
Finding the right brand of puppy food for your growing lab pup is important in helping them to grow up healthy. For our money, the product that does this best, while also being affordable, is Taste of the Wild.
This brand provides puppies with a decent balance of nutrients and high-level proteins, while also being easy to digest for the pup. It also doesn't leave you bankrupt like some brands, which is positive in itself.
At the end of the day, you can't go wrong with any of the choices above, as all have something to offer your Lab puppy. If you have any questions, feel free to leave them in the comments. Thanks for reading and we hope to see you soon.
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