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Food switch to Increase Overall Energy Levels

July 1st, 2007, 06:23 PM
What with summer's heat and all, Charley is laying low, and isn't really putting out enough energy in an attempt to stay cool (even though I soak him down and have a cooling collar for him as well as ready access to water (a full litre minimum). He's good for about 1/2 hour at agility, or 20 minutes at the off leash dog park, or halfway down my suburban block when walking leashed. I even have our little Yorkie with me to try to trick him into going faster, Charley leads, Buddy follows, but all that does is make it such that I am dragging two dogs instead of one.

So, I'm looking for suggestions for higher energy giving foods, that are lower fat (because he puts on weight easily), that have small kibble (because the Yorkie is fussy about sizes). I'd also prefer multi source protein... Help, I don't even know where to start!

July 2nd, 2007, 11:17 AM
I don't remember how big the kibble was, but my ~50 lb mixed breed dog had a lot of energy while on Evo RM. Too much, in fact. He seemed rather high strung, so I switched him to something else. I didn't like it for him, but could be a good food for a different dog, and might increase your dog's energy level.

July 2nd, 2007, 05:46 PM
We switched our six year old golden from Nutro to Orijen Adult five months ago and everyone has noticed how much more energy he has. He used to be somewhat of a couch potato but now he is chasing balls and is eager to take walks (except in very hot weather).

The Orijen adult has multi-protein sources: chicken, turkey and 2 kinds of fish. It has 40% protein and 16% fat (which is less than Evo). Our dog actually needed to lose a couple pounds which has happened with feeding the Orijen. Hope this information helps.

July 2nd, 2007, 06:27 PM
I agree with the Orijen and the kibble size is quite small.

July 2nd, 2007, 06:47 PM
THe starch in carbs in very graint diets can be more of a concern for caused weight gain as the body breaks it down ito surgar and stores it as fat also increases the risk of diabetes, any fats in the food actually becomes the prime source for energy so when you feed a low fat high carb food it can actually cause increased weight gain and lethargy.
So you are better off looking at high protein foods with little carbs, the more fat the more energy the dog will have, fat also help the dog remain more hydrated so there also helps them cope with the heat better.

The main thing with the high protein foods is to cut back the amount fed as they are very nutrient dense, my senior greyhound laszy which is normal for the breed get 1 1/2 cups per day and he is 84 lbs which is less than the recommended amount of 2 1/2 cups, the bag recommendation is only a guideline amount needed by individual dogs vary by activity level and metabolism rate, internal parasites can also affect amount needed

If lethargy continues and or dog continues to gain weight despite cutting back the amount fed than blood work should be considered to check for hypothyroidism, you don't need a alot of symptoms to consider asking the vet to test for I had a very skinny senior greyhound I had adopted , but to me she just seemed unusually lethargic, had a bit of hind foot dragging noticable only when she walked for a bit, and one area where she had a prior scar had become like dried leather, because of researching it early I knew these could be possible symptoms and I insisted on a thyroid panel even though my vet felt it was not necessary, results came back that she was indeed very low, so she was put on medication, my vet would never have recommended testing it was my observation and suspecting something was not quite right that made me ask for the test to be done, a couple weeks after going on the meds she was just a bouncing around like a youngster, the neuro damage that caused the foot dragging never recovered but the skin area improved after several months(the cracked leathery skin usually only occurs in dogs that have no standing hypothyroidism, so if your intuition is that he is more lethargic than he sould be, than trust that intuition, you see your dog day to day so you are the first that is going to pick up changes which the vet won't note from seeing only once or twice a year.

July 3rd, 2007, 08:42 PM
I like the idea of multi source protein and was actually considering buying a few types of food and mixing them all together to achieve the same effect... Buying a ready mixed bag would be better, Charley can eat around kibbles he doesn't like. :shrug:

The Origen website says they have a small dog formula, which might work for the yorkie... Here's hoping I can find a bag, or at least something quite similar.

OG - Charley has never eaten the 'recommended' portion size either. Right now he's at 1/2 c per day of the Performatrin Ultra Maintenance food, plus probably a meals worth of calories in treats for training. An increase to the portion size yields soft poop after about 2 weeks, which usually means he's eating too much. So maybe its time for a new food... The one he's on is fish based, and I'm not convinced his metabolism evolved to live on fish alone... Even today, it was less than 25 C out and he was dragging on the walk. His eyes are bright, his fur smooth and his disposition is good, so I'm not quite sure its medical in nature, but I'm keeping a close eye on it.

He's on benadryl for environmental allergies (OCD style feet licking) but I've cut that dose back too (1/2 tab every two days) which keeps the licking at bay and hopefully isn't making his groggy... If a food switch doesn't improve the situation, we'll be looking into blood panels for sure. I hate to think I've been starving the poor dear... Its not like he sits by his bowl looking for more once its done or anything, but then he isn't supposed to beg for food either... Oh, I hope I haven't done this to the poor little beast. :fingerscr :confused:

July 3rd, 2007, 08:55 PM
I agree with the Orijen and the kibble size is quite small.

How does the Acana compare with the Origen?

July 3rd, 2007, 10:54 PM
Acana contains grains albeit good grains. A few fur pals @ the off leash park eat Acana Lamb & Rice, Premium & Salmon & Potato. Their energy levels are good and their coats are fine. The Salmon & Potato is not a true allergy formula however as it has other grains in it as well. rates Acana 3 or 4 stars.
The kibble size may be a little large for the Yorkies.
Our local pet store has sample packs. You may want to try a sample or a small bag.
Orijen is the bees knees!!! It contains no grains.