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Messages - Meg

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Are our pets pampered?

Pampered pets! -  the beginning of the title of a recent article appearing in The Grocer. Discussing, amongst other pet food topics & trends, a tendency towards humanising our dogs.....

Here is the link :

Dog foods / Re: Weight gain without increased energy?
« on: Nov 10, 2017, 21:31 »
 Yes indeed a stunning lad, lovely long stride, ears back, muscle-y thighs, and importantly although alert he looks relaxed, taking it in his stride so to speak.  Personally I'd not want his top line too straight as at the withers (above the shoulder) the standard preference for the Estrella back is "slightly higher at withers and almost level" and once on the move their tails can be carried slightly higher than their back, which may affect a top line appearance too.

So long as he (and you) are both enjoying ringcraft and the shows then I wish him a great future in the show ring and as he progresses (through the awards) and passes his recommended health checks, you'll have opportunities to add his valued genetics to the Estrela gene pool for future generations of the breed.

Dog foods / Re: Weight gain without increased energy?
« on: Nov 09, 2017, 21:20 »
Some great advice already and I hope the change of  diet goes well for him. It would be great to know how he progresses too.

Now may I ask you please indulge an inquisitive nature .... ;) ...... that is a stunning photo of him in the show ring, which prompts me to ponder why he may be thought to be at a lower weight.   The Kennel club for breeds including Estrellas are acknowledging different sizes/weights within the same breed viz:
Size – the Kennel Club Breed Standard is a guide and description of the ideal for the breed; the Size as described does not imply that a dog will match the measurements given (height or weight). A dog might be larger or smaller than the Size measurements stated in the Breed Standard. "

To open a discussion......does anyone have any thoughts on this statement in the PFMA guidelines:

" There are currently eighty-one producers of commercial raw diets registered with Defra and nine of these are members of the PFMA so there is also the opportunity for us to grow our dedicated sector group "

My first thought when reading this was surprise at the number of producers of commercial raw diets there are currently.

Dog foods / Re: Food update/what to use now
« on: Nov 07, 2017, 01:15 »
has anyone used forthglade cold pressed  or the orijen freeze dried food with a sensitive hound?

Yes I've used Forthglade Cold Pressed (Duck  with Brown Rice).  The size of the kibbles are similar to the standard size of another cold pressed dog food called Gentle, slightly darker in colour than Gentle though not as dark as Markus Muhle NaturNah's cold pressed food.

For anyone unfamiliar with cold pressed 'kibbles' they tend to resemble hard pellets, rather than being round or cubed.

The Forthglade smells fresh when you open the bag and if anything slightly meadowy/grassy. Mine had a use by date of 7½ months.

Weaning was gradual to give this new food introduction to diet the greater chance of acceptance with the lesser chance of any unwanted 'reactions' ; ......and those first small 'tasters' were gobbled with relish!!

And yes I'm happy to comment that the Forthglade duck variety of the food has gone down a treat!   No itchy skin and no upset tums to report either. Importantly, wagging tails and empty bowls to boot!  ;D

I also added raw meat intermittently -  and on occasions, an amount of "complete" wet food -  to the kibble, was accepted with gusto too.

[Please be aware I have fed this food to a "sensitive hound",  though not a greyhound per se - rather a dog proven prone to demonstrate various ingredient intolerances].

Dog foods / Re: Aldi dog food
« on: Nov 07, 2017, 00:57 »
What a stunning head shot!

 Yes indeed as you mention "Different things suit different dogs" and it sounds like her food really suits her, which is good to hear.

 It's not always easy to find a food that our dogs enjoy and that continually helps to keep them in peak health. I rather think this responsibility - as one of our many important tasks when caring for dogs - is especially compounded with manufacturers somewhat prone to changing their food recipes. :o

So for example, manufacturers who label their food using 'categories of feed materials' rather than 'individual feed materials' may have the same labelling though may have made a change to the recipe. 

Thus should a dog begin to over-react  and so show signs of ill health, then foodwise, (and yes of course there may be other causes) it is nigh impossible to figure the cause, without knowing what ingredient(s) may be the culprit in the food.

General discussion / Re: Overweigh Bichon Frise
« on: Oct 19, 2017, 00:20 »
Regarding what advice to offer which may help Oscar, I'd be tempted to carry on with the exercise he already has, as long as he seems comfortable with that type of exercise and that amount. Dogs so much wish to please us, and as tempting as it may seem,  to aid weight loss for example, I’d not ask dogs to walk further than they want to, nor walk them at any greater pace than they are used to, as this could so easily 'backfire' by making them hungrier and unsettled and more importantly result in them becoming unhappy pooches overall. And if dogs shows less interest in their walks,  then I'd want to vary where they go, to give them fascinating,   ;) and different scents to explore.

For diet I’d suggest feeding twice a day (morning and early evening) plus a smallish supper, just enough to satisfy a tummy before bedtime, to help dogs last throughout the night. I'd avoid any food a dog dislikes, or that appears to disagree with them. Dry dog food is denser in calories than meat and so to help with calorie intake, I’d be tempted to tweak a diet such that the larger volume of the diet consists of meat (be that tins, fresh, trays, pouches), with the lesser volume of the diet as kibble.

When it comes to the type of food to feed, it sounds like Oscar was content for some time eating Burgess Salmon and it may be that he prefers a diet with a fish variety.

Please will you keep in touch and let us know how he progresses.

General discussion / Re: Overweigh Bichon Frise
« on: Oct 18, 2017, 23:41 »
Hello Sparky1964 and welcome to the forum!

Notably there are vast differences within certain breeds with acceptably healthy dogs that simply do not wear the one-breed-weight-chart-fits-all hat........And rather interestingly, the (relatively) new growth standard charts (published last month) for monitoring bodyweight in dogs of different sizes has new categorisations with 6 sizes of  I, II, III, IV, V, VI rather than the pre-existing 5 sizes of Toy, Small, Medium Large, and Giant.

Here is the link: and as you can see the Bichon Frise of size “Small”  -  guideline weight 5kg to <10kg - is in the new size categorisation of “II” with a guideline weight of between 6.5kg to <9kg. Nevertheless these new size guidelines are evidenced based and so a starting weight of 5kg increased to 6.5kg is a 30% increase, which for a small dog is fairly significant!
In a nutshell what I’m trying to say is that dogs have their individual shapes and sizes,   and weight is surely a guideline at best.

Many of us (myself included) introduce plenty of variation into the diet for a young dog, and work around any responses, for example if a dog shows an intolerance, or has 'gone off' the food, we tweak and change the diet as necessary. If your little dog happily managed 7-10 miles a day with minor diet tweaks, then well done to you. It sounds to me as though it’s the operation that has ‘upset’ things, and I’m not surprised if this is the trigger, as castration (albeit essential for Oscar) does tend to change metabolism in dogs, some reacting more noticeably than others.

Hello 909Dave and welcome to the forum!

Thanks for your input to this poll, and looking at the results so far, it appears your food choice of "Mostly raw +some dry complete +some home made" is a neck-and-neck favourite with a couple of other choices at the moment.  ;)

I wonder if this may change as others add their vote to this poll, or if indeed this remains a favoured popular choice!

@Meg - They are 'thriving' well and running rings around us.  ;D

T'is good to hear, happy healthy pups!  :)

Thank you Cappymiato and William and yes indeed as shown by this poll (thus far  ;) ) the  dry food mostly fed to our dogs nowadays  is COLD PRESSED.

I wonder if this trend may change as others add their vote to this poll, or if indeed cold pressed remains a favoured choice for most!

Hello jonnyfive555 and welcome to the forum!

I am looking information on the best 'dry food' to feed them. The current food that the puppies are eatting is James Wellbeloved. Value for money and good nutritional content is a must.

Some great advice already.
  I'd also like to add that whilst puppies are thriving well, eating their current food, then it may be useful to have a look at the nutrient levels that are in their food,  as a basis to follow when deciding to change their diet.

 For example the food your puppies are currently eating has already been reviewed in the allaboutdogfood Dog Food Directory here: JWB Puppy and as you can see when looking at the "Dry weight nutrients" section, the protein level of the food is 32.6 and this is slightly above average; fat is 16.3 which is higher in the average range;  fibre at 2.9 is lower in the average range; ash is practically mid-average at 9, and carbohydrates are an above average level of 39.1.

  So if you decide to search for a dry food with similar nutrients you could use the allaboutdogfood Dog Food Directory here: and filter the results using the sliders of the "Nutrient levels", which you'd set to approximate those values mentioned in their current food.

As already mentioned there are several filters available in the directory, including the types of dry food, and for example whether a food has ingredients that are clearly labelled. Plus useful filters to avoid any ingredients that really do not suit an individual dog or that an owner might wish to avoid feeding.

General discussion / Re: Ketogenic Dog Diet
« on: Oct 12, 2017, 00:21 »
 ....after providing an email address, and verifying that email address (by clicking a link that they send to the email you provide) I was given access (via a link) to the handbook, which is a 24 pages pdf file, to be read onscreen and also could be downloaded.

[I decided to print, peruse and use as a helpful reference when offline].Thanks Seaweed,  :)

Hello RCortazzi and welcome to the forum!


I have an 11 month old English springer.  He has been fed on Skinners puppy - completely ok with this, because of his age he has moved onto their junior range... this is causing alot of poo!  some formed and some well its diarrhoea.  I have done alot of research and i would like to change him onto wet/raw foods. 

Some great advice already.

 Another reason for his tummy being 'upset' might simply be to due to the differences between the Skinners puppy and the Skinners junior. For example, within the brand all the puppy foods do not have wheat, nor wheat gluten, and yet whole wheat (wheat including wheat gluten) is added into their Life Junior range and their Field & Trial Junior range except one specifically hypoallergenic variety namely Field & Trial Junior Duck & Rice.

As you may know wheat is one of the more common ingredients that cause signs of intolerance shown in dogs, for example diarrhoea, and for this reason I'd advise it may be prudent to avoid wheat and wheat gluten in any foods you change him on to.

Dog foods / Re: Aldi dog food
« on: Oct 11, 2017, 20:17 »
Sorry I've no experiences of these particular dog foods. Though surely as a responsible company (and possibly the only company) selling a product, isn't a company somewhat obliged to be aware of the ingredients in detail, and also to answer customers queries regarding these products, if anything is unclear.

It is important that we are aware of what pet food we are buying and so what we are feeding to our pets; in other words to have clear, accessible information. And in this case, having approached Customer Services and yet unfortunately without receiving the expected further clarification, I'd suggest David might think about an approach to the directors currently registered with Companies House, and readily available in the public domain, using the registered number of the company which for Aldi is stated here: Privacy policy

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