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Am I feeding my pup enough?

tinam
December 10th, 2008, 06:12 PM
I rescued a terrier mix about 3 months ago - not exactly sure how old he is now, it seems his teeth are all in, so 6-7 months? Anyway, I've never seen a dog as hungry as 'Wilson'. We feed him a cup in the morning and 3/4 cup at night of all natural hard food. He gobbles it up so fast it seems like he's absolutely starving and it breaks my heart. All other dogs I've had, I was able to leave food in their bowl at all times so they could eat at their leisure - this is the first one that has structured mealtimes. That's fine, but I'm just afraid that I'm starving the poor baby. (I have another rescue who was free to eat when he pleased, but can't now because the puppy will eat it all)Is there a way to tell how much to feed? He's about 23 lbs and doesn't appear over/underweight - I can feel his ribs through his skin. He's an active puppy which makes me think I should be feeding him more than the dog food packages advise (???) I'm tempted to fill his bowl and see if he really WOULD stop when he's full, but afraid he wouldn't.....

Also, - is it totally necessary to feed a 6-7 month puppy, PUPPY food? Is there a real difference other than more "fat & calories" ?
Thanks for your help & advice.

luckypenny
December 10th, 2008, 07:06 PM
What do you mean by "natural food?"

Has your pup been seen by a vet yet? Has he been de-wormed (the pup, not the vet :D) ? Does he/she think your pup needs to put on some weight?

Some dogs hoover their food down. Some members here slow their dogs down by spreading their kibble on a cookie sheet or putting a Kong in the feeding bowls. You can also find special bowls made specifically for slowing gobblers down.

babymomma
December 10th, 2008, 07:33 PM
I think if he seems to be strved after eating his food he may have tape-worm?:shrug: I studied these worms in school and they can start out quite small and can just keep on growing. One of my neighbors cats had one and she didnt start showing that she was underweight for quite a while after she got the darn thing:frustrated:

And how much your feeding a dog depends on its energy level,and other things. You may have 2 of the exact same breeds from the same litter, but one will eat very little and stay healthy while the other may eat like a horse and stay at a healthy weight. Its all a matter of metabolism and whatnot. Feeding instuructions are just guidelines. It differs from dog to dog.


Good luck! I think you should consult a vet and rule out any health preoblems( i.e. worms)

BTW- Welcome to Pets.ca!

bendyfoot
December 11th, 2008, 10:02 AM
There are two types of eaters, IME. I have both. One kind of dog will hound you for food all day, scarf down it's meal like it's going to be it's last, then hound you for more food. It's every action screams "I'M STAAAARVING". The other kind of dog nibbles and picks and nibbles and sometimes doesn't even bother to eat, and seems to occasionally forget that food even exists.

The one who's STAAARVING...is not. They're lying. They just reaaaally are driven by food, and filling the bowl is likely going to result in the pup gorging himself, and probably bloating or vomitting, neither of which is safe or healthy. Do NOT cave into the sad puppy eyes and overfeed your pup, or you are going to end up with an obese dog, which is a far more horrible/cruel thing. Generally speaking, it's better to have structured mealtimes as opposed to leaving food out all day. It allows you to control how much the dog is eating (portion control) and allows you to quickly see if the dog's not eating as much as usual (a sign of illness).

Dry food (kibble) usually comes with a feeding guide on the bag, a recommended amount to feed (in cups/day) based on weight. This is a very good starting point for most dogs/puppies. The most important thing to base the amount you feed is not the feeding guide, however, it's the dog's body condition. For example, I have two dogs roughly the same size...one gets 1.5 cups a day while the other gets 4 cups a day. These amounts are based on their body conditions. If I feed one more than 1.5 cups/day, she gets chubby. If I feed the other LESS than 4 cups a day, she gets bony. I give my dogs a good appraisal with both my eyes and my hands at least once a week, and adjust their food as needed. If you're not sure exactly how to assess body condition, ask your vet at your pup's next checkup. In a nutshell, though, you want to see a nice tuck in the belly/waistline both from the side and from above, and you should be able to feel the ribs with just a small layer of flesh/fat. If you can't feel ribs the dog is obese.

As for feeding puppies puppy food...how big is your dog (I have two terrier mixes, and one is 55 lbs while the other is 25lbs...) As a general rule, it's better for larger pups to stay on puppy food longer, at least a year...this helps regulate their growth at a safe/healthy level. Smaller dogs (IMO) can be put on adult food faster, especially if they're starting to show signs of getting fatter rather than longer/taller.

tinam
December 11th, 2008, 01:15 PM
I love this place........ (sigh)
Thanks, Luckypenny - That bowl looks like just what he needs...and the vet did say he looks good, so....
Babymomma - He's been de-wormed and we're giving him PYRANTEL for hopefully the last of it (them) - ick (his 3rd dose is today)
Bendyfoot - It's comforting to just know that he's probably not starving and that I'm not a horrible mommy. I'll take your advice and just keep watching/feeling his weight. I don't think he's supposed to get too big, but we're just not sure.

Thanks to all!
(I love dog people !):goodvibes:

scathach
December 12th, 2008, 08:50 AM
my pup is a gobbler too! He gets 4 cups a day at the moment but he would take much more :laughing: He absolutly love cheese! that's how i gave him his meds ;) You just have to adjust yourself and it'll be fine!

aslan
December 12th, 2008, 10:09 AM
yup i'm with bendyfoot, i have two garbage gutts, and one nibbler. you stand there watch them eat and they look at you and have this look of " PLEASE I"M STAAAAARVING" i usually look at them and say ummm dumby i'm the one who just fed you go try that on your other mommy. Little buggers do..

bendyfoot
December 12th, 2008, 10:10 AM
:laughing:

So does mine!:D

bendyfoot
December 12th, 2008, 10:11 AM
I am currently bribing our "nibbler" to eat by spiking her kibble with salmon :rolleyes: whilst guarding said salmon-spiked tastiness from the STAAAARVING dog... sigh.

mona_b
December 12th, 2008, 10:20 AM
Every dogs motabolism(sp) is different...A certain amout will be okay for one but not the other. Just like a human..:)

Can I ask why you cut the amount in the evening?

Try giving a cup and a bit at both feedings.

I have never fed my dogs dry exclusively..My boy is a free feeder as he isn't a hoover..LOL...He gets a can in the morning(fills him up) and a can in the evening.Has his dry if he gets the munchies...:D

As for switching to adult,I have heard and done the opposite...Having large breed dogs I had switched them to Adult at 6 months..For the smaller breeds it's usually a year...My boy is now 12 and switching him at that age never harmed him in any way..:)

tinam
December 13th, 2008, 10:12 AM
we cut back the night feeding because he was pooping soooooo much, we figured we were overfeeding him. (?)
Bendyfoot, you reminded me of something else, guarding my "nibbler"- Oliver while he eats, all while having to look my little piggy "Wilson" in the eye and say "you can't have any more" :(
We give them wet food, too (not everyday) and also a mixture of rice & beef, but Wilson eats it so fast I think he's gonna puke.....(yay)
Now that I know that some dogs eat this way, I feel a ton better :pray:
thanks

Longblades
December 13th, 2008, 01:26 PM
is it totally necessary to feed a 6-7 month puppy, PUPPY food?You should ask your Vet but there is a school of thought that believes puppy food is completely unnecessary at any age. Some years ago manufacturers of puppy food claimed high growth, high calcium formulas that many experts think lead to too fast growth that can be especially damaging to the joints of large breed dogs. I don't think puppy food is as bad these days but we stayed with our breeder's recommendation and used the same adult food our breeder had weaned him onto. Same as we did 16 years ago with the first puppy from the same breeder. As others have said above, a too fat, too quickly growing puppy is thought by many to be in more danger of ill health, meaning mostly joint health, than a lean pup. Ask your Vet.