What should I feed my little senior? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-14-2008, 03:08 PM Thread Starter
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What should I feed my little senior?

Zamboni, my beagle/spaniel, will be 15 in May.

I've been feeding her 1/2 home cooked and 1/2 kibble. Both grain free. But her stools are getting soft on that combination. I think she's just getting a little too old for this rich of a diet. I've tried both the high protein/fat combination of Instinct, and the high carb/low protein/low fat combination of Natural Balance Fish/Sweet Potato. I've also tried mixing these for a balance. Nope.

When I drop the home cooked to about 1 Tblsp (which doesn't add much besides flavor), her stools firm up. But then she's just basically eating kibble, and loses the nutritional benefits of the organic home-cooked diet, which is mostly turkey, chicken, or buffalo (she can't tolerate beef , pork, or elk well anymore), plus a wide assortment veggies.

I'm nearly positive that if I switch her to a kibble that has grains (which would add bulk), I could continue to add the home-cooked and resolve the problem.

Boni has to watch her weight carefully, which is part of the reason I switched her off grains. (Also, my GSD is highly allergic to all grains, so I wanted to ensure that he didn't find a runaway piece of kibble that would be "toxic" to him.) She can't tolerate anything raw, not even raw eggs.

So, what do you recommend? Stick with grain free kibble and minimize the home cooked? Or move to a kibble with grains and continue with cooked diet? Or, none of the above and other suggestions?
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-14-2008, 07:20 PM
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Re: What should I feed my little senior?

Can you get your hands on ground bone? Bone has a way of hardening things up. Of course, this would need to be fed raw. What about a fiber supplement like psyillium husk (I hope I got that right)?

Renji - 6 y/o M GSD x chow rescue

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-17-2008, 04:58 PM Thread Starter
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Re: What should I feed my little senior?

Thanks Diana. Bone meal is an option I hadn't thought of. But it's usually cattle bone, which, as you probably know, can be high in lead.

Psyllium is an interesting thought....

I went to a different holistic pet store this weekend that had samples, and grabbed a bunch of different ones.

But I think I'm just going to stick with Instinct. It's been working great thus far, and she likes it. Besides, we know she doesn't have any cud-chewing teeth, right?

Seniors and sick dogs...we learn so much from them....
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