UPDATED JUNE 7, 2019 | WRITTEN BY MOLLY
“I’m hungry and I want the only the best puppy food now” is something your Shih Tzu puppy would say if they could talk.
Instead, expect that, “PLEASE FEED ME” look and for your Shih Tzu to flash those sparkling, saucer eyes at you.
Any Shih Tzu loving parent would want their fur baby to be in the best of health, happy, and to live as long as possible. That’s why it’s important to provide the most nutritious foods possible when feeding them.
So what do you feed a puppy?
Ideally, Shih Tzu puppies thrive on a diet of real food instead of by-product based commercial dog foods.
Think about it…what sounds better, yummy chicken breast or crushed up chicken feet pellets?
Now she won’t be able to holler “chicken breast!”, but with a lifted nose, she will definitely let you know what WON’T work.
If given the option, your little one will choose the best stuff every time.
A B.A.R.F, or Biologically Appropriate Raw Food, diet consisting of highly nutritious fresh foods that contain essential vitamins and minerals is definitely considered to be the best puppy food.
When it comes to a BARF diet, grains are left out because dogs wouldn’t naturally go after that type of food and too much grain will lead to poor health for your fur baby.
So, hands down, a high quality diet, like the BARF diet, is the best food.
However, if a BARF diet is not realistic for you financially, there are some commercial puppy foods on the market that will give her the nutrition that she needs.
The main thing that you have to look for is the ingredients that are used in it.
If the first ingredients listed are meal or grains, leave it alone. She won’t do well with that stuff. That’s like living on a diet of junk food.
If your Shih Tzu puppy is like most of them, you could get an earful from her as her collar starts squeezing the big, fat neck that she is sure to develop.
Big and fat are two words that should not be used to describe a Shih Tzu because, ultimately, that would mean that she is unhealthy, inactive, and very likely to have a short life.
Who in the world would want that for their little cutie?
All Shih Tzu puppies have their own individual needs.
So consider your pups overall profile and talk to your vet for suggestions for brands that will work best for her, and whether a wet dog food or dry dog food makes sense for your pup.
So now that you know what to feed your puppy, naturally you want to know how much to feed them.
It would extremely easy to overfeed your Shih Tzu because they are charmers by nature.
You will be so tickled to see your puppy hit you with those “Betty Davis eyes” that you could feel compelled to feed her everything in sight.
In all honesty, that may make your little one happy at first, but there could be some really scary health issues that come later that could make both of your lives miserable.
That’s why it’s best to feed her the right amount.
Pretty much, when feeding a puppy, you basically want to give her one-half to 1 ounce of food for every pound that she weighs per day, not per setting!
Think of it like this, if your dog weighs 8 pounds, you need to feed her 4 ounces per day.
However, this is a general rule of thumb.
The reality is, if she is very active, you may end up feeding your little one closer to a full ounce per pound of her weight.
By the time your puppy is closer to 12 pounds, the daily feeding should be about 1 cup of a well balance meal.
Nobody needs to eat every minute of the day--not even your puppy. Setting a feeding schedule will work great for her and your family.
Present the meal to your little one 2-3 times per day for about 15 minutes at a time.
You’ll see your puppy go to town for a while, chomping and maybe even smiling in between. Then, after about 15 minutes, once your dog is done dining, take up the food.
It may seem a bit regimented, but it will pay off in the long run.
If you want to give your pup a few extra perks, get some nutritional treats that will make him or her jump for joy!
Remember, when it comes to caring for your favorite Shih Tzu puppy, only the best puppy food will ever do!