If you’ve recently brought home a Yorkie puppy, you are probably wondering how much food he or she should be eating. You want your little friend to grow into a healthy and active adult and should know how to adjust his diet according to the stages of growth.
This feisty little dog is full of energy, so it should be getting the right amount of calories. Knowledge of how many times per day to feed your furry friend will also be helpful. Remember that fresh water should be available at all times.
It is also important to feed your Yorkie a food that he enjoys. Dogs that refuse food can become hypoglycemic, and it is necessary to keep blood sugar levels consistent.
So, how much food should a Yorkie eat per day?
Although each dog is an individual and feeding amounts may vary, 1/4 to 1/2 cup of dry food daily is the recommendation for Yorkie puppies. They should be eating three to four times per day, according to Petcha.
Until they reach 4 months, food should be available at all times for the very young puppy; after 4 months a feeding schedule can be established.
For the puppy under 3 months old, leaving food available helps prevent hypoglycemia.
Your dog is growing quickly and should be fed a high-quality food, according to AKC, to enhance muscle and bone development.
Although dry food is a better choice for your puppy, you can feed him a small amount of wet food as well.
The Yorkie puppy should be started out on a dry food which contains the most nutrients. Additionally, dry food helps control tartar and keeps the teeth healthier.
After 3 or 4 months, the meals are more scheduled. Some Yorkie parents feed their dog in the morning, lunchtime and early evening. If another meal is scheduled, it should be in the evening.
Breakfast should be the largest meal of the day, and dinner can be the lightest. Do not give your little friend food later than two hours before his bedtime.
Throughout the day, snacks can be given as a reward for good behavior.
After 4 months, an eating schedule should be established. It will make training him much easier. Eating regularly is a step in training your Yorkie’s behavior.
At 9 months to one year, your Yorkie can be switched to a diet for adults. If you are doing home cooking for your dog, amounts of food can be a bit less than the recommended dry food amounts.
According to Tree House Puppies, Your dog needs a certain amount of calories per day; here are the recommended amounts per growth stage of the Yorkie:
- Puppies – 200 calories
- Adults – 150 calories
- Seniors – 120 calories
According to the National Research Council of the National Academies, 1-year-old or younger puppies require 400 calories per day.
The exact calories needed will depend on your Yorkie’s level of activity, so this is just a guide.
The amounts of calories at this NRC guide show the calories for a ten-pound dog. However, your Yorkie weighs less, so this guide can be adjusted.
Read the label on the food you are feeding and make adjustments if necessary.
It is recommended that the adult Yorkie eat twice a day. However, some owners have continued to feed their dog three times a day. Remember that the Yorkie has a small stomach, so his meals should be divided throughout the day.
Read the label on the particular food to find out how much you should be feeding your dog.
The general rule is that if you are cooking homemade meals for your Yorkie, this food has more calories, and your dog should be given less than the stated amounts of dry food.
At this stage, you will know the level of activity for your dog and will be able to adjust his diet accordingly.
For the adult Yorkie, it is recommended to be feeding him 1/2 to 3/4 cups of food per day; you can split this amount between his two or three meals.
Avoid giving your dog scraps from the table; this can cause health problems as well as weight gain and also encourages the habit of “begging”; it is important that everyone in a family understand this rule and why it is beneficial for your little friend.
In the adult and senior dog, dental issues may make it better to switch to a wet food that your dog enjoys.
Some Yorkies loose teeth and chewing of the kibble becomes more difficult.
As dogs age, their metabolism slows down. If your senior Yorkie is no longer active, he might need 20% fewer calories than an adult dog. You do not want him to become overweight, so you might need to adjust his diet.
Remember that small dogs can suffer from hypoglycemia. If your Yorkie weighs less than 4 pounds, he can experience a drop in blood sugar from lack of food. To avoid this, he should be eating a food that he enjoys.
If your little dog refuses to eat, in order to counteract the effects of hypoglycemia, add a high-calorie dietary supplement gel or a teaspoon of corn syrup to your dog’s food; you can also rub it directly into his gums.
As mentioned by PetcareRx, if he does not respond, take him immediately to the vet for emergency treatment.
With a little knowledge and the right diet, your Yorkie will grow into a healthy, happy and energetic little friend.