My girlfriend picked up the new puppy this morning! Unfortunately I won't be able to meet him until Thursday when I get back in town...Big paws and a big head, looks like he's gonna be a pretty big boy. Meet my new 12 week old chocolate lab named Zeus!
Thanks guys! I can't wait to start training him! He's not only camera shy, but my girlfriend tells me he's a little shy about everything right now...new faces and places probably. I'm sure he'll get a bit bolder over the next few days.
I've been reading a lot of different theories on feeding a puppy like this. I want to find out from some other guys who have had lab pups. He's 12 weeks old and weighs about 25 or 26 lbs. We're going to start by feeding him 3 times a day, one cup of dry food at each meal. Kirklands best dog food contains about 360 calories per cup, good protein content, and no junk fillers or anything. Does 3 cups a day sound about right?
Wow, just talked to my girlfriend this morning and Zeus slept through the entire night in his crate beside her bed. He never whined once until 730 this morning when he had to go out and pee. Not one single accident through the whole first day, every time he went to the bathroom, it was when he was taken outside to go. Looks like we might have gotten really lucky with this one, loves his crate and goes to the bathroom outside already. I guess I shouldn't get too excited over just one day, but I think it was the most important day. The only thing I'm worried about is him wanting to chew on anything and everything already. She picked up a pile of chew toys for him to hopefully keep him occupied and off the furniture...Man if he already knows how to chase down ducks and geese too, I'm definitely in business
Congrats on a gorgeous pup. As to the feeding, 3 cups sounds like a lot, and 25 or 26 lbs. for a 12 week old is a lot. My thoughts are a pup (especially a large breed dog) should not only be kept trim and fit, but it is healthier to regulate his food to keep him growing at a healthy rate. Growing pups will not get fat unless majorly overfed, they will instead turn some extra energy into growth. And I've been convinced by breeders and vets that too fast of growth results in a heavy, fully formed body before the hips and joints are fully formed, possibly contributing to hip and joint problems later. I think a large lab that ends up going 85 or 90 lbs. should take over a year, possibly going close to a year and a half to fully fill out and reach that 90 lbs. If you have a 9 month old "pup" that appears to be fully filled out and grown up, I think he was fed too much and is not in his best health interests. Just my theory.
Like you, I brought an eight week old lab home about 2 weeks ago. She came home on 1 cup x twice a day. After a couple days I upped her to 1 1/4 cups for about a week, but thought she put on a little more weight than size, so dropped her back to a big, rounded cup of food. I only expect this girl to get to about 60-65 lbs., unlike her housemate a 95 lb. chessie, but I think growing up the most food he ever got was 3 cups, maybe 3 and a half, a day.