Raising a Goldendoodle comes with great responsibilities, and one of them is knowing how to feed them properly.
If you happen to own a Goldendoodle, then this Goldendoodle feeding guide is what you need to learn all the basics!
Goldendoodles are the hybrids of Golden Retrievers and Poodles. People have many questions about feeding this breed — should Goldendoodles be fed like their Retriever parents or like Poodles? Similarly, what are the best foods for this hybrid?
Here, we’ll take a detailed look at the Goldendoodle feeding guidelines. After reading this, you should be able to pick the best food options for your Goldendoodle, determine how much to feed it, what foods to avoid, and more!
Goldendoodle Feeding Chart by Age: How Much to Feed Your Goldendoodle?
In general, a Goldendoodle should be fed one to four cups of food in a day, split between two and three meals. Since Goldendoodles come in different size variants, the rule of thumb is to feed them one cup of food per 15 pounds of body weight per day.
However, diet may still vary per individual dog. The exact amount of food to give your Goldendoodle depends on many factors, such as age, size, lifestyle, and more.
For starters, the Goldendoodle is considered one of the large breed dogs. However, like Poodles, Goldendoodles also come in three size variants: Toy, Miniature, and Standard.
If you are curious, a healthy weight for a full-grown toy Goldendoodle is 20 to 30 pounds. Meanwhile, a mini Goldendoodle typically weighs 35 to 50 pounds. The largest one, the standard, is often between 50 and 90 pounds.
You should only follow the “one cup of food per 15 pounds of body weight” rule if your Goldendoodle is within the ideal weight range. Otherwise, the rule of thumb will not be beneficial for your dog.
Furthermore, other factors like build, metabolism, lifestyle, and overall health should be considered when feeding your Goldendoodle. For now, we will guide you on how to feed a standard Goldendoodle.
In the following sections, we’ll assume that your dog will grow from a large breed puppy to a large adult dog. If you have a toy or miniature Goldendoodle, you might need to adjust the portions accordingly.
Goldendoodle Puppy Feeding Chart (2 to 12 months)
During the first two weeks of age of Goldendoodle puppies, avoid feeding them actual dog food. Your pup should be with its mother as it will depend on nursing at this stage.
Goldendoodles tend to grow pretty quickly. When they turn three weeks old, this is where they start weaning. At this point, your Goldendoodle puppy is ready to transition into puppy food feeding.
Refer to the chart below to know how much Goldendoodle puppy food to feed your pooch:
|Age||Daily Food Quantity|
|2 months||2 – 2.5||649 – 1294||25 – 30%||12 – 18%|
|3 months||2.88 – 3.25||863 – 1667||25 – 30%||12 – 18%|
|4 months||3.13 – 3.5||1100 – 1843||25 – 30%||12 – 18%|
|5 months||3.25 – 4||1294 – 2016||25 – 30%||12 – 18%|
|6 months||3.5 – 4.38||1350 – 1875||25 – 30%||12 – 18%|
|7 – 8 months||3.13 – 4.13||1115 – 2070||25 – 30%||12 – 18%|
|9 – 12 months||2.75 – 4||1344 – 1875||25 – 30%||12 – 18%|
The amount may look ridiculously small, but you have to understand that they are still puppies. The above-mentioned food portioning is enough to help your Goldendoodle grow healthy bones and get the energy they need.
Alongside dry food or dry kibble, water is also vital for a Goldendoodle puppy. You should always have a water bowl beside your dog’s food when feeding your puppy.
Adult Goldendoodle Feeding Chart (1 to 6 years)
Once your Goldendoodle has reached one year old, it has grown into full adult size. What does this mean for its feeding requirements? Well, for the most part, it means moving away from puppy dog food and towards adult food.
Refer to the feeding chart below to know how much adult food to give your Goldendoodle aged one to six years old.
|Age||Daily Food Quantity|
|1 – 6 years||2.63 – 6.25||1300 – 1700||30%||15 – 20%|
As you can see, older dogs do not necessarily consume more calories than puppies. For ages 1 to 6 years, your Goldendoodle will more or less eat the same amount of food.
It is also important to point out that you should start feeding your adult pooch adult dog food. Giving puppy food to an adult dog is not recommended.
Aside from meeting their daily caloric needs, you should also keep a close eye on your dog’s protein and carb intake. These macronutrients are vital in helping maintain their body mass and stabilize their energy.
Likewise, antioxidants, omega-3 fish oil, and healthy fat will also do wonders for your dog’s immune system and healthy skin and coat. Be sure to read through the labels on adult dog food!
Senior Goldendoodle Feeding Chart (7 years and above)
As your Goldendoodle ages, its energy level dials down a bit. Moreover, its bodily function slows down, and it begins to develop health issues. Hence, it’s essential to know exactly how and what to feed a senior dog.
For starters, senior dogs need fewer calories. Provide your senior Goldendoodle with high-protein meals that are low on carbs. This will help avoid muscle loss and prevent their digestive system from overworking.
They also need omega-3 for joint function and digestible nutrients to support their weakening digestive system.
The chart below shows how much food a senior Goldendoodle should consume in a day.
|Age||Daily Food Quantity|
|7 years and above||2 – 2.5||900 – 1000||20%||10%|
Since dogs at this age can be very fragile, extra care and effort are needed in finding the best dog food for your senior dog.
Feeding a Goldendoodle can be challenging, and you will need to switch it up a bit as they age. That said, the main takeaway here is that your dog needs a well-balanced diet.
If you want more info on how much to feed your Goldendoodle, watch this video featuring a cute parti Goldendoodle:
Goldendoodle Feeding Frequency: How Often Should You Feed Your Goldendoodle?
The right time to feed your Goldendoodle depends on its age. In general, you should feed Goldendoodle puppies three to four times a day. Free feeding is also acceptable for puppies. Meanwhile, adults and senior Goldendoodles should be fed once or twice a day.
Goldendoodles always have an appetite. They are known for being food lovers and will consume more than necessary if unsupervised. Hence, it is crucial to create a feeding schedule to prevent underfeeding or overfeeding your pup.
The table below summarizes the recommended feeding frequency for Goldendoodles, depending on their age:
|0 – 12 weeks||Three to four times a day or free feeding|
|13 weeks – 12 months||Three times a day|
|1 – 6 years||Twice a day|
|7 years and above||Once or twice a day|
Puppies should have more frequent meals than older Goldendoodles. A puppy going through the growth and development stage should be fed at least three to four small meals a day. It is also okay to free-feed a very young puppy.
As Goldendoodles grow, they should be fed fewer times a day, albeit with more volume. It is a good idea to establish a feeding routine once your Goldendoodle reaches 13 weeks old.
An adult Goldendoodle should be fed once or twice a day, while a senior Goldendoodle should be fed at most twice a day.
The reason why puppies need more food is that they are the ones who need development the most. By giving them the proper nutrients at the right times, you are helping your Goldendoodle grow up into a healthy dog.
On the contrary, older Goldendoodles need to have stricter feeding routines to prevent obesity. This will also help regulate their bowel movement and energy levels throughout the day.
Optimal Feeding Times for Goldendoodles
Just like humans, dogs need a proper eating routine. This way, their energy levels are kept stable throughout the day.
Moreover, a proper eating routine will also do wonders for their digestive system and other bodily functions.
Refer to the table below to learn more about the optimal feeding times for a Goldendoodle:
|Age||Optimal Feeding Times|
|0 – 12 weeks||7:00 am, 11:00 am, 3:00 pm, and 7:00 pm if not free fed|
|13 weeks – 12 months||7:00 am, 1:00 pm, 7:00 pm|
|1 – 6 years||7:00 am, 7:00 pm|
|7 years and above||7:00 am or 7:00 pm if fed once a day. 7:00 am and 7:00 pm if fed twice a day|
As you can see, a Goldendoodle puppy needs to be fed more times than older dogs. While free-feeding is generally okay when feeding your puppy, it is wise to introduce a feeding routine at around 13 weeks old.
As for adult Goldendoodles, you can feed them one meal in the morning and another in the evening. This should be enough to make them feel full throughout the day.
Senior Goldendoodles, on the other hand, can be fed once in the morning or once at night. If your dog still prefers two meals, you can feed them similarly as you would an adult.
While on the topic of optimal feeding time, it is also important to know when to give treats to your dog. Usually, it is best to give treats to your pooch in between meals — not right before and not right after.
Preferably, you should only use treats to reward your dog. Doing otherwise will mess up your pup’s appetite. In turn, this will also affect their potty schedule and interfere with the balanced diet they should be getting.
If you want your dog to follow their meal schedule strictly, your puppy’s parents should be responsible for observing and maintaining its routine. This goes for your pup’s primary caretaker and other members of your household.
Always remember that you can tweak these optimal feeding times so that it fits your lifestyle better.
Adjusting a few hours here and there won’t hurt your dog. However, it is best to feed them around the same time each day.
Best Dog Foods for Goldendoodles
Typically, Goldendoodles are not picky eaters. They love any food and can eat almost anything you serve. However, it is still essential to know the best foods to give your Goldendoodle.
Providing the best kinds of food for your dog is not only good for their health, but it also helps preserve some of their best features, such as their hypoallergenic trait and calm disposition.
Below is a list of the best foods to incorporate into your dog’s diet:
- Wet Food: Wet food or canned food is one of the most accessible dog food that requires little to no time to prepare. Wet food is easier to chew than dry food and is suitable for dogs with weak teeth, senior dogs, sick dogs, or dehydrated dogs. Wet food is arguably the best puppy food. Its flavor and softness are excellent for developing teeth. However, wet food is not a viable alternative to a mother’s milk.
- Dry Food: Dry food or kibble is the most convenient food to serve your dog. In addition, dry food is also one of the best food choices for a Goldendoodle as it is excellent for their dental health. Dry food prevents tartar buildup and gum disease and promotes stronger teeth. Kibble is best for adult Goldendoodles as their teeth are as strong as it gets. Some ingredients you should look for when choosing kibble are chicken fat, flaxseed, omega-3, and meat protein. There are also grain-free options if your dog prefers those.
- Raw or BARF Diet: Biologically-Approved Raw Food Diet or BARF Diet is a healthy alternative diet where several nutrients are mixed into one meal. This consists of raw meat, bones, fish meal, and a mix of fruits and vegetables. Feeding your Goldendoodle a raw diet reduces the use of commercial dog foods that have added preservatives and unhealthy processed foods. BARF diet has been proven to bring health benefits such as healthier and shinier skin and coat, good dental health, fewer ear infections, and less odor in Goldendoodles. Plus, Goldendoodles like the taste of raw food! However, you should still check in with your vet if you’re planning to provide a BARF diet to your pup.
- Homemade Diet: A homemade diet is very much acceptable for Goldendoodles. They can thrive with this diet as long as proper nutrients are provided. Make sure to supply them with the six key nutrients a dog needs — protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and water. Preparing a homemade meal is also much cheaper. Moreover, it also gives you more control over what your dog consumes.
While some Goldendoodles will benefit best from a BARF diet, others may not be suitable for it. Likewise, a Goldendoodle with an underlying health condition might be better off with a homemade diet.
In addition, some Goldendoodles may benefit from specific kinds of foods or supplements that are tailored for their coat color. To learn more about Goldendoodle coat colors, read our comprehensive guide on the topic.
On some occasions, the generation of a Goldendoodle can also affect the best diet for it. In conclusion, the best dog food is always on a case-to-case basis. Consult a vet if you want to be sure!
Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Goldendoodle
As deep-chested dogs, Goldendoodles tend to develop stomach issues easily. These dogs are prone to bloating and often have different allergies to food. Certain foods cause pain, vomiting, and diarrhea in these dogs.
Some of the most dangerous foods for your Goldendoodle are grapes, raisins, and prunes. These three foods contain an unknown toxic substance that can trigger major problems such as choking and kidney failure.
Cherries are also notorious for your Goldendoodle. Its pits, seeds, stems, and leaves contain cyanide, a poisonous substance that can cause an upset stomach.
Soda is not just unhealthy for humans but for dogs as well. The carbonation and sugar levels of soda can be hard for dogs to handle. It can cause dehydration, gastrointestinal problems, excessive flatulence, and diarrhea.
Moreover, as we all know, chocolate is toxic to Goldendoodles. It contains a xanthine compound known as theobromine, which dogs cannot digest and metabolize. Needless to say, keep your Goldendoodle away from chocolate!
But if your dog happens to consume chocolate and shows signs like vomiting, diarrhea, excessive urination, and increased heart rate, visit the nearest vet immediately.
Onions and garlic should also be kept away from Goldendoodle because these contain a thiosulphate compound. This compound may cause discomfort, diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration, loss of appetite, and abdominal pain.
Furthermore, any food with a high level of sugar and salt is bad for your Goldendoodle. Salty foods will dehydrate your dog, and excessively sweet foods can cause diabetes.
It is a good habit to also check the sugar and salt levels of any food you give to your Goldendoodles.
Other harmful foods are macadamia nuts, walnuts, raw or undercooked food, coffee, dairy products, citrus fruits, and avocados.
As an owner, you only want the best for your Goldendoodle, so learning what’s good and what’s bad for your dog is essential. If you have any of these in your kitchen, ensure that your dogs don’t have access to them.
How to Transition Your Goldendoodle to a New Food
Transitioning your dog to a new diet can be hard. Luckily for you, Goldendoodles are generally not picky eaters. Most of them are always down to try new food, so transitioning to a new diet won’t be too challenging.
The ideal time for the transitioning period is around 10 days. Mix the new kibble to your dog’s food, and gradually add more each day. Do this until your Goldendoodle is comfortable enough to try completely new food.
Start by adding only 10% of the new food to the old ones for two days, then increase it to 25% later on. Turn the 25% to 50%, and when you notice that your dog is adjusting well, continue the process.
Refer to the table below for a more detailed breakdown of transitioning your dog to a new food:
|Day||Old Food||New Food|
|Day 1 – 2||90%||10%|
|Day 3 – 4||75%||25%|
|Day 5 – 6||50%||50%|
|Day 7 – 8||25%||75%|
It is important to be as patient as you can while in this process. Keep in mind that your dog’s nutritional needs change as they age. Hence, the type of food your pup eats also needs to change.
One of the ways to know if the new diet suits your dog is to observe their behavior. If they seem happy and energetic and look healthy, it signifies that the new diet works for them.
On the other hand, if they show negative signs, like vomiting, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, and diarrhea, try slowing down the process even more. If they continue to show these concerning signs, call a veterinarian for help.
Keep in mind that the transitioning period takes a while and can even be a long journey for some dogs. If this is the case for you, be patient and considerate of your pets, as this is also difficult for them.
Feeding an Overweight Goldendoodle
There can be various causes for excessive weight gain in dogs. For Goldendoodles, the most common reason is unsupervised eating. Giving excessive treats may also result in an overweight Goldendoodle.
Likewise, having more than one dog that shares food in one bowl can also result in an overweight pooch. Regardless of the reason, an overweight dog is an unhealthy dog.
Fortunately, there’s a pretty easy way to tell if your dog is overweight or not. One way is by feeling your puppy’s ribs. If you can barely feel its ribs, then, chances are, your dog is over the ideal weight.
Similarly, your puppy’s waist is also a good indication of its weight. For the Goldendoodle, the waist should still be reasonably shaped when seen from the top view.
Feeding an overweight Goldendoodle is pretty simple. All you need to do is to cut down on its food portion gradually.
Alongside that, you also need to give your dog healthier food options. This will ensure that it is still getting the proper nutrition, albeit in smaller volumes.
It’s a good idea to incorporate high-sodium, high-protein, and low-calorie foods into your Goldendoodle’s diet.
Switching to homemade treats like celery, cucumber, carrots, green beans, chicken meal, and apples is also a great idea.
Try incorporating these healthier food options into their meals or accustom them to a homemade diet altogether.
A homemade diet lets you control your dog’s consumption, so it is an excellent alternative for overweight Goldendoodles.
Now, if you still want to stick to dry kibble, you should purchase low-calorie ones. Fortunately, there are specialized kibbles that are made explicitly for overweight dogs.
Keep in mind that spoiling your Goldendoodle with food will not do any good. If anything, it will only make it harder for you and your dog in the long run. Always remember that obesity leads to an increased risk of fatal conditions!
As a recommendation, it is best to try and keep your dog within its ideal weight. This is far easier than feeding and taking care of an overweight Goldendoodle.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why Is My Goldendoodle Not Eating?
Goldendoodles are not picky eaters, so if yours is not eating, there may be an underlying problem. If you notice other severe symptoms like vomiting, pain, and discomfort, contact your vet immediately.
But if your dog doesn’t show these signs, it might simply need a change in its routine. A dog can lose their appetite due to low-quality food, boredom over the same food, sudden change of diet, allergies, or lack of physical activities.
Do Goldendoodles Eat a Lot?
Yes. In fact, Goldendoodles can almost eat anything! Sometimes, Goldendoodles will eat as long as there is food around despite being full. Because of this, they are known as opportunistic eaters.
This habit can be traced to their ancestry. Goldendoodles inherited eating a lot as a form of survival instinct from the Golden Retriever. Basically, these dogs have a feast and famine mindset.
Can Goldendoodle Eat Bones?
Technically, Goldendoodles can eat bones thanks to their strong teeth. In fact, many dogs and even large breed puppies, such as standard Goldendoodle puppies, are very capable of eating bones.
However, it is best to refrain from feeding bones to your Goldendoodle. Instead, just let your pup chew it. Moreover, you should also ensure that you feed your dog raw bones instead of hard, cooked ones.
The American Kennel Club suggests giving your dog a raw bone after a meal, letting them chew on it, then taking it away after 15 minutes. Keep in mind that Goldendoodles should be supervised when chewing on bones.
Can Goldendoodles Be Vegetarians?
Yes. Goldendoodles can thrive with vegetarian food. If you plan on putting them on a vegetarian diet, make sure that their nutrient needs are still being met.
Keep in mind that a vegetarian diet is expensive, though. This is because vegan protein sources are often costlier. It may rack up your Goldendoodle expenses, so beware!
Feeding a Goldendoodle can both be hard and easy at the same time. Since they are not picky eaters, these dogs can adjust well to new foods.
The downside is that the Goldendoodle tends to have a sensitive stomach. This means you have to be careful about what you give your pooch.
Simply put, it is imperative to keep your pup’s diet in check. Remember, happy dogs are healthy ones!
To wrap up, if this Goldendoodle feeding guide has helped you out in any way, feel free to talk about it in the comments below!