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Old 01-11-2013, 08:05 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Feeding/Eating enough?

I have been told by the breeder, my vet, and my K-9 trainer to feed Ranger 6-8 cups of food per day. The breeder was a open feeder. I don't like that. The vet and trainer both said to split the food into 3 feedings, which is what I do. I feel it is better for them to eat at meal time, and not have access to food all day. It makes them (all dogs) easier to train when they are on a schedule. This is just my own experience, though, from reading up on the matter, and putting it into practice with the few dogs I've owned over the last 25 years. Ranger, though, is not complying. LOL.

The breeder fed him a mixture of Purina Puppy Chow and Pedigree Large Breed Puppy food. I feed a mixture of Purina Puppy Chow and Beneful puppy food. I made the change on the first day because our senior basset hound has eaten Beneful since she went off of Puppy Chow. I understand how many of you feel about the "name brand" dog foods, and I don't share your concerns. Again, I base this off of my own experience.

Needless to say, the first few days, he would hardly eat at all. I attribute that to a complete change in his life, and a partial change in food brand. He has done better these last few days, but still not where I think he should be. I give him about 2 full cups at each of 3 daily feedings. The breakfast feeding, he only eats maybe 1/4 of the food. The lunch feeding, he eats 3/4 to all of it. And the dinner feeding, he eats 1/2 to 3/4 of his food. He drinks water throughout the day, but not a lot at a time. This doesn't seem like enough to me.

Is this normal, or is he not eating enough? Is it the change from the breeder's outside run with his sister to being inside my house with a adult basset hound (they don't eat together)? Is it the new food? Or is it a combination of all the above? My gut tells me this is normal, and when he is hungry enough he will start eating. I don't want to end up with a tall, lanky GSD, though. I bought the breed, and this specific bloodline to have a BIG dog. I don't want to do anything to harm his health, or inhibit his growth.

FWIW, he is a completely happy (read: becoming completely spoiled) pup.
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Old 01-11-2013, 01:10 PM   #2 (permalink)
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How old is he? That sounds like a HUGE amount of food to me, but the lower quality foods often have fewer calories per cup, and a lot more filler, so you'd need to feed more to get the same amount of nutrition. I don't think I've ever fed more than 4 cups a day to any of my dogs. I agree that regular meals are better than free feeding.

Think what you like about food quality, but Beneful is a pretty crappy food, and Purina Puppy Chow and Pedigree aren't much better. Here are the ingredients for Beneful:

Ground yellow corn, chicken by-product meal, corn gluten meal, whole wheat flour, animal fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols (form of Vitamin E), rice flour, beef, soy flour, water, meat and bone meal, propylene glycol, sugar, tricalcium phosphate, phosphoric acid, salt, animal digest, potassium chloride, sorbic acid (a preservative), dried peas, dried carrots, calcium propionate (a preservative), choline chloride, L-Lysine monohydrochloride, Vitamin E supplement, zinc sulfate, Red 40, ferrous sulfate, manganese sulfate, niacin, Yellow 6, Yellow 5, Vitamin A supplement, Blue 2, calcium carbonate, copper sulfate, Vitamin B-12 supplement, brewers dried yeast, calcium pantothenate, thiamine mononitrate, garlic oil, pyridoxine hydrochloride, riboflavin supplement, Vitamin D-3 supplement, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of Vitamin K activity), calcium iodate, folic acid, biotin, sodium selenite.

Here are the ingredients for Puppy Chow:

Whole grain corn, corn gluten meal, chicken by-product meal, animal fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols (form of Vitamin E), soybean meal, egg and chicken flavor, brewers rice, barley, animal digest, calcium phosphate, fish oil, calcium carbonate, dried yeast, salt, potassium chloride, choline chloride, L-Lysine monohydrochloride, L-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of Vitamin C), zinc sulfate, Vitamin E supplement, ferrous sulfate, Yellow 6, DL-Methionine, Yellow 5, manganese sulfate, niacin, Red 40, Vitamin A supplement, Blue 2, copper sulfate, calcium pantothenate, garlic oil, pyridoxine hydrochloride, Vitamin B-12 supplement, thiamine mononitrate, Vitamin D-3 supplement, riboflavin supplement, calcium iodate, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of Vitamin K activity), folic acid, biotin, sodium selenite. X-4001

Corn, not meat, is the first ingredient for both, and there's a bunch of chemicals and artificial colors added. If you remember the pet food recalls from 2007, where thousands of dogs and cats got sick and died, it was wheat gluten, rice protein concentrate and corn gluten containing melamine that was the problem. These are sourced from China, and I would never feed my pets food that contained any of these ingredients, or anything else from China.

Please consider switching both your dogs to a better quality food, with meat, not corn, as the number one ingredient.
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Old 01-11-2013, 01:29 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Some better foods that are readily available and aren't super high end are Canidae All Life Stages (suitable for a puppy and an adult): CANIDAE® All Natural Holistic Dog Food - All Life Stages dry formula

Chicken meal, turkey meal, lamb meal, brown rice, white rice, rice bran, peas, potatoes, oatmeal, cracked pearled barley, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), millet, tomato pomace, natural flavor, flaxseed meal, ocean fish meal, choline chloride, suncured alfalfa meal, inulin (from chicory root), lecithin, sage extract, cranberries, beta-carotene, rosemary extract, sunflower oil, yucca schidigera extract, dried enterococcus faecium fermentation product, dried lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried lactobacillus casei fermentation product, dried lactobacillus plantarum fermentation product, dried trichoderma longibrachiatum fermentation extract, vitamin E supplement, iron proteinate, zinc proteinate, copper proteinate, ferrous sulfate, zinc sulfate, copper sulfate, potassium iodide, thiamine mononitrate, manganese proteinate, manganous oxide, ascorbic acid, vitamin A supplement, biotin, niacin, calcium pantothenate, manganese sulfate, sodium selenite, pyridoxine hydrochloride (vitamin B6), vitamin B12 supplement, riboflavin, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid, papaya, pineapple.

Chicken Soup for the Puppy Lover's Soul: Large Breed Puppy Food Formula - Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul

Chicken, turkey, chicken meal, turkey meal, cracked pearled barley, whole grain brown rice, white rice, oatmeal, millet, potatoes, egg product, tomato pomace, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), duck, salmon, flaxseed, ocean fish meal, natural chicken flavor, salmon oil (source of DHA), potassium chloride, salt, choline chloride, dried chicory root, dried kelp, carrots, peas, apples, tomatoes, blueberries, spinach, dried skim milk, cranberries, rosemary extract, parsley flake, yucca schidigera extract, L-Carnitine, dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus casei fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus plantarum fermentation product, dried Trichoderma longibrachiatum fermentation extract, vitamin E supplement, iron proteinate, zinc proteinate, copper proteinate, ferrous sulfate, zinc sulfate, copper sulfate, potassium iodide, thiamine mononitrate, manganese proteinate, manganous oxide, ascorbic acid, vitamin A supplement, biotin, niacin, calcium pantothenate, manganese sulfate, sodium selenite, pyridoxine hydrochloride (vitamin B6), vitamin B12 supplement, riboflavin, vitamin D supplement, folic acid.

Blue: Blue Buffalo - All Natural Chicken and Brown Rice Puppy Food

Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Whole Ground Brown Rice, Whole Ground Barley, Oatmeal, Menhaden Fish Meal (source of DHA-Docosahexaenoic Acid), Tomato Pomace (source of Lycopene), Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Natural Chicken Flavor, Peas, Alfalfa Meal, Whole Potatoes, Flaxseed (source of Omega 3 and 6 Fatty Acids), Fish Oil (source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids), Whole Carrots, Whole Sweet Potatoes, Blueberries, Cranberries, Barley Grass, Dried Parsley, Garlic, Dried Kelp, Yucca Schidigera Extract, L-Carnitine, L-Lysine, Turmeric, Dried Chicory Root, Oil of Rosemary, Beta Carotene, Calcium Carbonate, Vitamin A Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Niacin (Vitamin B3), d-Calcium Pantothenate (Vitamin B5), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Biotin (Vitamin B7), Folic Acid (Vitamin B9), Vitamin B12 Supplement, Calcium Ascorbate (source of Vitamin C), Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin E Supplement, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, Zinc Amino Acid Chelate, Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Choline Chloride, Sodium Selenite, Calcium Iodate, Salt, Caramel, Potassium Chloride, Dried Yeast (source of Saccharomyces cerevisiae), Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, Dried Bacillus subtilis fermentation product, Dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product

Innova: Pet Products - Healthy Dog Food, Natural Cat Food, Gourmet Dog Biscuits ? Innova Holistic Pet Food

Turkey, chicken, chicken meal, barley, brown rice, rice, potatoes, chicken fat, pea fiber, egg, natural flavors, flaxseed, apples, sunflower oil, pumpkin, carrots, potassium chloride, sea salt, herring oil, cottage cheese, alfalfa sprouts, dried chicory root, direct-fed microbials, lecithin, rosemary extract, vitamins/minerals

Wellness: Wellness Complete Health® Super5Mix® Large Breed - Puppy Health

Deboned Chicken, Whitefish, Chicken Meal, Oatmeal, Ground Peas, Ground Barley, Ground Brown Rice, Salmon Meal (a source of DHA - Docosahexaenoic Acid), Tomato Pomace, Chicken Fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols, a natural source of Vitamin E), Tomatoes, Natural Chicken Flavor, Ground Flaxseed, Salmon Oil (a source of DHA - Docosahexaenoic Acid), Carrots, Spinach, Sweet Potatoes, Apples, Blueberries, Salt, Minerals [Zinc Sulfate, Zinc Proteinate, Iron Proteinate, Ferrous Sulfate, Copper Proteinate, Copper Sulfate, Manganese Proteinate, Manganese Sulfate, Sodium Selenite], Vitamins [Beta-Carotene, Vitamin E Supplement, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Vitamin A Supplement, Niacin, Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin, Vitamin D-3 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Thiamine Mononitrate, Folic Acid, Biotin, Vitamin B-12 Supplement], Choline Chloride, Taurine, Mixed Tocopherols (a natural preservative), Chicory Root Extract, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Dried Lactobacillus plantarum, Enterococcus faecium, Lactobacillus casei, Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation products.This is a naturally preserved product.

Natural Balance: Original Ultra Dry Dog - Natural Balance Pet Foods

Chicken, Brown Rice, Lamb Meal, Oatmeal, Barley, Potatoes, Carrots, Chicken Fat (preserved with natural mixed tocopherols), Duck Meal, Tomato Pomace, Natural Flavor, Canola Oil, Brewers Yeast, Duck, Salmon Meal, Sodium Chloride, Potassium Chloride, Salmon Oil, Whole Ground Flaxseed, Choline Chloride, Taurine, Natural Mixed Tocopherols, Spinach, Parsley Flakes, Cranberries, L-Lysine, L-Carnitine, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Dried Kelp, Vitamin E Supplement, Iron Proteinate, Zinc Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Ferrous Sulfate, Zinc Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Potassium Iodide, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B-1), Manganese Proteinate, Manganous Oxide, Ascorbic Acid, Vitamin A Supplement, Biotin, Niacin, Calcium Pantothenate, Manganese Sulfate, Sodium Selenite, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B-6), Vitamin B-12 Supplement, Riboflavin (Vitamin B-2), Vitamin D-3 Supplement, Folic Acid.

You don't need to be an expert in canine nutrition to see the difference between these foods and the Purina products. All of them should be available at some or most of the major chain pet supply stores.
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Old 01-11-2013, 04:58 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Victor Super Premium Dog Food Check out the "find a dealer" link, you live in Texas so you shouldn't have trouble finding this food. It's way better than the foods you posted and is very reasonable on the wallet. I have the most issue with Beneful, why does a dog need SUGAR as an added ingredient to the food?? (Not to mention chemicals like propylene glycol that is dangerous to people and animals!) I would at least give it a try. I've never fed a puppy 6-8 cups of food, or even an adult! That just seems ridiculous! At your pups age my pups were eating no more than *2*, MAYBE 2.5 cups a day! He probably doesn't eat everything because he's being over fed. Over feeding is what will hurt your puppy in his growth and cause a lot of money down the line from bone problems and joint dysplasia. Tall and lanky happens, unless you just make your dog fat, he's going to be naturally lanky for a while. You can't expect a GSD to look like an adult until they're a good 2.5-3 years old on average.

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Old 01-11-2013, 07:05 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks for the responses. The wife, who is a 20 year animal control officer, suggested that I take the Beneful out of the mix at lunch time. I did and he gobbled the plain Puppy Chow up. I also went out and got several trial sized bags of many of the foods listed. I gave him half Puppy Chow and half Taste of the Wild for supper, and he ate the Puppy Chow and left the good stuff in the bowl. Apparently he doesn't care for that. I will try another one in the morning. We asked the vet for another recommendation this afternoon, and she said Purina Pro Plan Select for large breeds. The first ingredient is Chicken, and it has 27 grams of protein. What do the experts think of that brand? I am used to hounds that thrive off of whatever is in the bowl. I have hunted coon hounds their entire lives on Beneful, and none of them turned their nose up at it. I guess some GSD's are finicky.
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Old 01-11-2013, 10:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Sugar and sprayed on fat is why they didn't turn their noses up at it. Taste of the Wild doesn't have all the sugar added and rancid fats sprayed on the kibble to make the dogs eat it. A dog going from junk food to good food will require some tough love, think about trying to feed the average kid some baked skinless chicken and a salad when it's grown up on McDonalds burgers and fries. Pro Plan is better than the ones you are currently feeding. Many people here won't agree with it because it does still have corn/soy/wheat in most of the formulas but I've fed it and my dogs did well on it. I feed raw these days though and have to say, it's better than any kibble on the market. I'd still suggest Victor over Pro Plan though. It's an even better brand than Pro Plan and cheaper than Pro Plan.
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Old 01-11-2013, 10:17 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I fed Iams large breed puppy and then Iams large breed. My dog quit eating it just as you're describing. I switched him to Blue Buffalo wilderness and he eats every bite in one sitting now. My fiancé tells me it even smells good to him! Lol.
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Old 01-11-2013, 10:31 PM   #8 (permalink)
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i fed my pup 3 cups a day of a high quality food.
i fed him 1 cup in the am, 1 cup noonish and
1 cup in the pm. i added a lot different things
to his kibble as a topping including can food.
he also had a snack throughout the day.
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Old 01-11-2013, 11:36 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I checked the map on the Victor web site and there are no retailers near me. I am actually in Tennessee, not TX. Although, we did used to live in my wife's hometown of Austin. The local pet store that I like to deal with has the Blue Buffalo. I'll see if they have any samples of that if he won't eat any of the other ones. I'm just perplexed by a dog that refuses to eat what's put in front of him.
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Old 01-12-2013, 11:00 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thanks for all the input. We researched a lot and settled on Purina Pro Plan Focus for Large Breed Puppies. I mixed it 3:1 with the Puppy Chow, and added 2 tablespoons of Pro Plan Large Breed moist food to entice him a little. He's eaten every morsel at two meals today. I know it's not the high end, organic stuff, but it does have real meat as the first ingredient. I just don't buy into the organic stuff, but to each their own.
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