How to Wean A Puppy


When you are responsible for a litter of puppies, you should be make sure that they are weaned properly. The mother dog will take care of weaning them off of her milk, but it is up to you to wean them onto regular dog food.

Things You'll Need

  • Puppy milk
  • Canned dog food

Starting Puppy Milk

Start supplementing puppy milk. Most mother dogs will feed their puppies all that they need to eat for the first four or even five weeks. However, you might want to start supplementing puppy milk as soon as the puppies are big enough to crawl around and their eyes are open.

Place a shallow bowl of puppy milk on the floor when the puppy is 3 to 4 weeks old.

Guide their faces to the milk. They may stick their whole nose in, but that's ok.

If they don't get it on their own, stick your fingers in and let them suck on them. Then, guide the puppies to the milk.

Give them some sips of puppy milk a few times each day. But still allow them to take the majority of their nourishment from their mother. She has important proteins to give them.

Supplement earlier for very big litters if the mother is, for some reason, not feeding the puppies enough.

Starting Puppy Food

Watch closely as you continue to give puppy milk. There will be a time when the puppy begins to have more milk from you than from the mother. At the same time, watch for its teeth to grow in.

Begin to add canned food to the puppies milk. Start with only a small bit and make sure it is very soft and covered in milk.

Continue to add more puppy food to the milk until you are feeding the puppy more food than milk.

Watch the mother to see how often she is feeding her puppies.

As the mother gradually stops feeding her puppies, put them on a schedule. You should be feeding them about four times per day until they are completely weaned.

As the puppies get older, reduce the amount of times per day that you are feeding them, until it is exactly what you feed your adult dog or what is recommended on the puppy food container that you are using.

Tips & Warnings

  • Keep a big cloth handy, this will get messy.
  • Don't force a puppy to drink puppy milk unless the mother is not feeding it.

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