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How long to feed puppy food?

June 15th, 2004, 11:25 AM
Is it true that a dog should not be fed puppy food after they have been spayed/neutered? All the bags say to feed puppy food to 1 year, but I have heard only to feed it up until they are spayed/neutered...

June 15th, 2004, 11:27 AM
Good question,the vet i first took my gsd to told me i should put him on adult around 6 months because od the breed,he said you dont want him to grow to fast,hhhhhhhmmmmmm????? I dont know...

June 15th, 2004, 11:40 AM
I've gone back and forth about this myself with Ellie. Old rules were 6 months, new rules seem to be 12.

With her hip dysplasia, one of the most effective treatments is to reduce food intake by 25%. Anyone who has a chow hound breed like mine (and one prone to obesity) knows how trying this can be. Speaking of trying, I *did* try it. And Ellie spent her days hungry, counter surfing and snarking cat food and litterbox treats. It was one of the most frustrating times I've been through with her. But the vet said to keep her on puppy food until she was a year, because she needs the extra nutrients for growth. Puppies need a higher amount of food intake than adult dogs for this very reason.

I put Ellie on adult food about two weeks ago. She can consume a larger amount, thus feeling full, and it has less calories and whatnot, so keeps her thin. My little tubby girl is starting to slim down now, and her little (big!) legs are starting to shoot out all over the place. But this isn't necessarily the right thing to do for every dog.

If you find yourself in the "my dog is never full" category, unsalted canned green beans (Organic is Good for You!) can be added to their food to add some bulk without too many extra calories. Rice can also be used, but it *does* have a lot of carbohydrates and although I despise the Atkin's Diet for people, it's on target for dogs. They need protein and animal fat because they're mostly carnivorous (although mine is a grass eater).

In the long run, I don't think 6 extra months on puppy food makes that much difference. I have a sneaking suspicion that most dogs foods are the same, if they're a high-quality, name brand food. Meat (no grain or by-product) should be the first ingredient and none of the first five ingredients should be grain. A food with no by-products is best.

Beef and corn are two of the most allergenic foods given to dogs, but that's not to say you shouldn't feed them. In fact, I give Ellie a beef based dog food because if she ever *does* develop allergies to it, it gives me more of a variety of foods as alternatives.

Anyway, this is just my two cents.


June 15th, 2004, 11:44 AM
Yeah i dont know,i just got him a big bag of adult lamb and rice by solid gold,so he is eating adult now,calories and fat are lower so i am ok with it,and i heard i dont want him to get overweight either because of hip d.. ,so adult it is....

June 15th, 2004, 11:49 AM
German Shepherds, like labs, are prone to hip problems. Have you had Damien x-rayed? Ellie does alright now with glucosamine and being kept as slim as her labness will let me, but problems will develop in the future.

Damien is quite handsome, by the way. :)

June 15th, 2004, 11:53 AM
OH!!! Thank you,he is just perfect to me..........I took him to vet last week ,he physically checked him out and said everything looked ok,not to worry about that right now,good vet for over 30 years so i said ok...Why should i get him x-rayed???? How much does that run??

June 15th, 2004, 12:00 PM
No, no. Not saying you *should* get him x-rayed. With large breed dogs (especially big clumsy puppies, like ours), if you notice a lameness that persists for more than *3* days, you should alert your vet. Just like toddlers and clumsy adults, dogs can bang themselves up and twist ankles and whatnot and recover fine on their own in a day or two. It's normal. But after 3 days, if you ever notice it, that can be a sign of a bigger problem--one that's not healing. I had noticed Ellie limping for a few days right before her spay and so had the vet x-ray while she was under anesthesia. Anesthesia's not particularly great for dogs, but more important than that to me, it's costly.

Here's the breakdown for Ellie's x-rays. All funds listed are US$.

Anesthesia, total cost: $172
Radiography, total cost: $207

So, don't do it unless your vet recommends it or Damien seems to be in pain for several days.

June 15th, 2004, 12:02 PM
oh,that price isnt to bad..Yeah he seems fine to me,thanks for the info........ ;)

June 15th, 2004, 12:03 PM
There are mixed reactions to this very issue. My comment? Ask you vet. He is the one that knows your dog, how he is built etc. I listened only to my vet, not the bag of food. I switched all my pups over at 6 months of age.


June 15th, 2004, 12:05 PM
Yeah i am gonna stick with adult,the vet said it,so that gets my vote,and i dont want him to grow to fast if that is the case,he is gonna be 6 months sat and he weighs 58 pounds i guess that is about right???

June 15th, 2004, 12:07 PM
I'm actually switching vets the next time Ellie goes for an updated vaccine. I know he's running a business, but I often find him a bit condescending and *expensive*. I don't mind paying top dollar for quality vet care, but I expect a certain return in compassion and concern. Don't necessarily get it from this guy. I *want* a vet who knows my dog best and unfortunately the vet I have now is not that guy, nor does he care to be. But I agree with Goldenmom, always consult your vet first.

June 15th, 2004, 12:18 PM
Have to have A VET THAT REALLY CARES,i agree go somwwhere else,i love my vet,first thing he does when he walks in the room,is sit right on the floor and gets to know your pet,i love him..........if he was only single...........Love people that love animals...........

June 15th, 2004, 09:18 PM
Do you have any suggestions on how to find a good vet? Is there a referral service online or something? I don't have any friends with dogs and I used to bring my Cocker to a VCA Animal Hospital but I hated the service. Did you just try new vets until you found one you liked?

June 15th, 2004, 10:59 PM
I changed vets 9 years ago. Found my new vet through recommendations from other friends. I knew I made the right decision because my dog no longer trembled in the waiting room and also because when he had his teeth cleaned, he wasn't nearly as groggy when he came home. They used much lighter anethesia. He never lost another tooth either. The old vet removed one each time the last 3 cleanings he did and charged extra for it. I do wish dogs could talk! :mad:
Maybe you could get some recommendations by talking to some of the people who work at local shelters. They would be in a position to know.

Kona Dawg
June 15th, 2004, 11:29 PM
I prefer abit larger of a facility over a one or two DVM clinic as each DVM will tend to have a specialty and be able to discuss different problems with their associates. The clinic that I chose is also affiliated with another at the other end of the city, and if memory serves me has 8 DVM's on full time staff, as well as 24/h emergency service at one of the locations. I've only personally met 2 of the DVM's there (Kona's only been in twice so far) and both were very nice, and helpful with any and all my questions/concerns. I also was present for her shots, and saw how they handled her with care and concern for her comfort.
(not an easy feat for a dog who's constantly moving :))

June 16th, 2004, 06:30 AM
I'm new to the forum so bear with me here. I have a 15 month old spayed female black lab (rescued), she was dignosed with bilateral(both sides) hip displasia at 6months and we made an appointment with an orthopedic surgeon in Lansing Michigan (there is also an othopedic specialist in Guelp,ON)who was highly recommende by several DVMs here in the Soo. We saw him when Sindar was 10 months old and he said that most large breeds(and X-large) who are prone to hip displasia, patella luxation and other ortho problems should be off of puppy food as soon as they can chew adult food, because it decreases there growth rate and you may be able to avoid such problems. We switched her to adult food as soon as arriving home from the visit, placed her on a strict diet and give her a glucosamine tablet every day and it seems to help......until the dreaded hip replacement next year!!!!!!!
I hope that the info that the ortho specialist gave me helps you.

June 16th, 2004, 07:09 AM
When my vet whom I'd had for many years,went back home to Scotland,I cried,I really loved her and we were almost friends.She euth.3 of my cats and she was as sad as me....
I knew no vet could easily replace her and I went in with an attitude :D
There is now 3 vets in the same office.First impression was,they are business-like and efficient,treated me as if I were a money-bag :D ...but after a few visits and talks,I now have full confidence in at least one of them.
My old vet would never charge for nail-clipping,she just did it without me asking for it,but the new one does($10)that's ok with me,after all they have to support 3 vets instead of just one :D
I am not stingy when i'ts about my cats,but at the same time not foolish,not everything the vet says and does is always right,you as the owner have to question each procedure and do research,just as you would with your own doctor.
Now,my cats so far are healthy and in good shape and I'm doing my best to keep them that way and hopefully they'll live happily ever after.

June 16th, 2004, 09:51 AM
I wouldn't say changing to adult has anything to do with s/n...Remember now a days they can be s/n at 8 weeks.... :)

The larger breeds are usually the ones who go on adult at 6 months.The reason being is you don't want to speed up their growth.That's where problems start.

With my GSD's,they were put on adult at 6 months.My friend has 2 Bichons,they changed to adult at the age of one.They have a bichon/shih tzu pup that is about 5 months.He is still on puppy.

My vet is great.I have had him for 18 years.There are 2 other vets in the clinic..My cat Phoenix(back home)still see's him.As for the dogs,they see the vet here.But I have brought them to see him for a visit.I use hubby's vet that he had when he had his dog.

June 16th, 2004, 11:34 AM
Just a dumb question - is the difference between puppy and adult foods just higher protein? I guess ignorance is bliss (for the owner). I just went by the instructions on the bag and fed puppy for the 1st year and then adult after that. Luckily I have a small breed dog.

June 16th, 2004, 11:53 AM
Ilooked at my dog food,and the fat and calories is different to..