Using a Puppy Milk Replacer to Sustain Newborn Puppy Health

November 3rd, 2011
Posted by | Posted in Health and Nutrition, Tips 2,607 views

We all know that having a dog as a pet is a delight, that’s why they are called “man’s best friend.”  However, caring for a dog can be a lot of work, especially if you have a puppy.  It is unfortunate that some puppies get “rejected” by their mother, meaning that for whatever reason, she does not allow her offspring to drink her milk.  Another unfortunate reality is that some owners may abandon puppies that still need their mother’s care.  Mother’s milk is an extremely important factor in puppy health, so in these circumstances, it is essential that proper nutrition be given in the form of a puppy milk replacer.

Young pups, just like human babies, need milk for growth.  Unlike humans though, dairy products are not good for grown dogs.  Nevertheless, puppies still need their mother’s milk for hydration and nutrition after birth.  The milk is loaded with antibodies and nutrients that will aid with their growth and development, as well as protect them from infections and viruses.

If you do find yourself with a litter of puppies, it is important to keep a close eye on the adult female dog and her puppies, especially the runts.  The smaller ones are more likely to get pushed out of the way by the bigger ones, which can lead to rejection by the mother.  Don’t panic if this happens. The problem can easily be fixed with a good puppy milk replacer.

Where to find a puppy milk replacer

A milk replacer can be found at vet offices, drug stores, some grocery stores and can also be made at home.  A good example of a puppy milk replacer is Esbilac.  This product is the perfect mother’s milk replacer; it is formulated with the protein, fat and carbohydrates that a puppy needs to survive.  It also contains essential vitamins and minerals to ensure proper puppy health.  Another substance it contains is L-arginine which helps to prevent cataracts in newborns.  Esbilac is convenient because it can be purchased in liquid or powder form, depending on your preference.

How to feed Esbilac

Esbilac needs to be warmed to room or body temperature before it is used.  Puppies can get 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of mixed Esbilac per 4 ounces (115 g) of body weight daily.  To provide the most benefit, try to divide out portions for each feeding.  Depending on the puppy’s age and health situation, his needs may vary.  If he is young or weak, he should be fed every 3 hours.  It is important to weigh the puppies at least 3 times per week to make sure the Esbilac is improving their health.  Also, always talk to a veterinarian before feeding your puppy a milk replacer, as a vet is best suited to decide if it is the best choice for your dog’s health.

Powdered Esbilac needs to be kept refrigerated. The open powder can be kept refrigerated for up to two months, but then it needs to be thrown out.  If needed, you can freeze it to preserve freshness.  Liquid Esbilac can only be kept refrigerated for up to 24 hours, and then must be thrown out.

Taking care of a puppy is a neat experience. First and foremost, keep your vet in the loop. Next, make sure to provide proper nutrition in the form of a puppy milk replacer such as Esbilac, and last but not least, play with and enjoy your puppy!

~ Original article from

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