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Messages - FurriesMom112

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Although the egg variety was suggested to me for my dog and despite it being a good digestible protein, the protein levels in the egg variety  look a little too low to me. Iv read that a moderate amount of protein  is between 20-30%. Not willing to go below the 20% mark so will be opting for the chicken predominately. This morning a burns nutritionist on the other end of the helpline said dogs don't need high levels of protein anyway, which I don't exactly agree with, and in our case my dog does need good protein for liver support so wanted a food with a moderate level. Since increasing his levels of protein, after coming off the hills k/d diet,  my dog seems to have improved in himself so hoping he will continue with the burns.  It's a try it and see!

Thanks for that information. Those dry matter percentages don't look too bad. The helpline person recommended the egg variety but the chicken percentages look ok too.  My vet has said that  my dog needs protein for his liver so didn't want to go too low.  I'm going to give it a try and see how he gets on.

Hi. Just a quick update.
Have tried Harvey on Gentle and although he seems to be getting on with it ok, unfortunately he is not eating it with any gusto! Most of the day he will often leave it and only begin to eat it in the evening when he will only eat it when taken from the hand. Unfortunately, he hasn't taken to eating it as I would like. So it's time for a re-think and a search for an alternative.
I am thinking of burns penlan farm. It has a moist choice which Harvey will prefer I think. Contacted their helpline and the egg variety was suggested, along with the chicken or  fish complete.
Just wondered if anyone had any experiences with this food. My thoughts are to err on the side of caution and go for a lowish fat diet but  just concerned about it being too low in fat and protein. Thought I could supplement it with added'home food' which could increase the protein and fat in his diet. He does currently have some chicken, sweet potato or cottage cheese and enjoys it.
Any thoughts anyone?

Hi MrsC, I can empathise with your current situation. My own dog has health problems, quite similar to your own dog. I put my dog on hills k/d after tests showed some loss of kidney function last year. My dogs kidneys have since  stabilised but recent blood tests have shown liver problems and  he has lost weight. I have read that  a good diet can help successfully manage kidney problems so I'm sure you can help your dog a lot with a good diet.  My recent research into dog food suggests that low protein is not needed in early stage kidney or liver failure and can actually be harmful so I think you are right to maintain good protein levels if this is where your dog is at.  I believe I placed my dog on a low protein diet too  early and am now seeking a change. I have read that low levels of phosphorous is far more important in managing the disease and read on the dogaware website that 0.6% is the figure we should be aiming at. Like your vet, my surgery is quite keen for me to remain on a hills or canin food (renal or not) but  similar to yourself I wanted a natural and enjoyable diet for my dog. I too feel at an impasse with the surgery over my dogs diet and I sympathise with your situation. However, a good  protein low phosphrous diet seems alittle like the holy grail in dog food for me at the moment. And  with regards to hills or royal canin, if the foods give the appropriate levels of protein and phosphorous for my dogs health then I have to admit that I have to consider them, even though their quality of ingredients seem poor. A good dog food is only good if it's right for your dog and although the ingredients don't look great it may be what my dog needs - this is how I'm seeing it at the moment. (Hope that makes sense). I do hope  you  soon find a diet to help keep your pooch in good health   Good luck and I would be interested to hear if you find a suitable alternative.

Hi. Just posted my surgerys response to the idea of Harvey eating Gentle on the 'cold pressed food' thread. Some things came up with the nurse that I was hoping others could respond to.
I came out pretty upset and cross today from the surgery.
I'm not even sure they looked at the analysis of the food or even thought about Harvey's requirements. Just stated that the food was not considered good quality.
I did not speak to the nurse I spoke to in the week but she had spoken about the food to the nurse I spoke to today.  I will be speaking to her on Monday although I will get the same spiel I'm sure.
No suggestion about percentages of protein, fat etc that Harvey needs and was even told 'at this stage, just give him something he will eat'. I informed her that although Harv  has health problems he is certainly not on his back legs. I intend to feed Harvey a good diet, to try and maintain or improve his health for as long as possible.
Pretty infuriated  and upset right now.
As I have said before I trust my surgery with Harvey and my other furries, but their advice on nutrition is appalling.


My Dog is 14 with  liver problems caused by an enlarged gallbladder. Sorry been on here a lot recently so you prob know already!
I wanted to place him on Gentle as it's good protein, low phosphorous, and natural. It seems to fit the requirements for his health problems.  I was concerned about the lowish fat content  as my pooch is losing weight so contacted my veterinary surgery.
I was told today by the nurse that they did not like the look of Gentle  for the following reasons:
It caters for all dogs and is not specific for seniors
The feeding guide was I think they thought "too vague".
The idea that the analysis was not dry matter.
Overall they said it was not good quality and they could not "put their name to it".
Came out of course with a recommendation to call 'royal canin'.
I am going to ring the Gentle company  for their response to this but anybody got any views on what my surgery is saying about this food?

I'm going to take a copy of the nutrition and analysis to the vets to see what they think. Iv checked all the percentages and Gentle seems to fit in with most of the recommended requirements as I mentioned above. Harvey's vet has said that he doesn't need a prescription diet so his diet does not need too many restrictions I don't think. Nurses reaction just seems to have 'wobbled' my confidence in giving him gentle so that I feel that I need some reassurance. My reaction was similar to yours Dottie in that that I could supplement it, maybe with a wet food. Just have a horrible feeling that the phrase "a good quality senior diet like royal canin or hills" is going to be ringing in my ears as I leave the surgery!

Hi. Our bag of Gentle has arrived. Harvey had some mixed with his current kibble and gobbled it up.
Rang our veterinary surgery tonight to get his current weight for feeding the correct amount and spoke to the nurse about his new food. She said that she didn't know about Gentle and when I said it seemed to fit his requirements she said that coming off his renal food he needs good digestible protein, low phosphrous and high fat.
Gentle has good protein and at  10g phosphrous and 12.5g calcium this seems to be low phosphrous and a good calcium phosphrous ratio.  Unless I'm wrong on this. The fat content worries me. Does anyone have any advice on this. I don't want Harvey losing anymore weight or suffering from a low fat diet.  I am confused whether he does need high or low fat. I trust my surgery but I'm not sure I can trust their nutritional advice. I felt better about choosing gentle but this phone call has sent me into disarray again!
My thoughts are to see how he goes on it, but at Harvey's age and  with his health problems I don't want to keep changing his food. Any advice or thoughts would be welcome. 

Thanks Dottie. Hoping it arrives in the next few days so we can see how Harvey does with it. 

Hi. We are waiting for  our first bag of Gentle to arrive. Ordered it Sunday night after trying a sample. My dog  currently eats a mix of kibble and canned food. We will have finished the canned tomorrow so hoping to do the changeover using just the kibble.  Is there a specified/suggested number of days for the changeover to this food.   Just worried as  current food is low and Harvey won't like too much dry kibble for long!
Also, Harvey enjoyed the sample but worried about him facing a meal of it  as he does like his canned food. How mushy does it get with added water?  Any experience and advice would be great.  Thank you.

Thanks Dottie. Think Harvey would actually prefer a 'smaller' bowl of food. He eats small meals throughout the day and doesn't always finish in one go so a smaller meal might just suit him better.

Thanks Dottie. Was up very late last night but just couldn't find a food to match Harvey's requirements. Then I re-read your post and checked out the cold pressed foods and was pleased with what I saw. I think it's a good possibility. Thank you so much for your help.

Hi. How are you dog's weight on cold pressed food? My dog has an enlarged gallbladder and I'm seeking out a new food. I'm particularly interested in Gentle or Lupo as they seem to meet his health requirements.  He has also experienced a steady weight loss over the past 6 months or so and therefore I am looking for a food which may help maintain his weight  or even help put some on. Would be welcome to hear any experiences with dogs weight on this diet. Thanks

Hi Dottie, thanks for the tip about cold pressed food. Have looked at the gentle so far and it seems to fit requirements for my dog. Just wondered if you fed it as complete or would it be a good idea to supplement with other foods?  I may give it a try because having looked at all the 'numbers' this seems to fit quite well.
Really like the look of Lupo too. Do you know if this could be softened with water too?

Thanks David. I have read about the flawed studies in to the protein needs of senior dogs  and therefore while 'investigating' possible foods for my dog the requirement of good quality meat protein has been a top  priority for us.
As you say though it's finding a balance of good protein with the  appropriate nutrients that Harvey needs  so as to not over stress the kidneys or liver.  Your advice concerning the copper etc will help to further focus my search.  On with the research then!!
I read with interest your thread of 'trusting your vet for nutritional advice'   I do trust my vet (we wouldn't go there if I didn't) and I am extremely grateful  to him for looking  after Harvey  so well particularly this past year, but on the nutritional needs of Harvey at the minute he wasn't particularly helpful. He said no to a hepatic diet and his suggestion of a 'good quality senior  food ' was predictably followed with "like royal canin or hills". Didn't really want to fill my beautiful dog with 'who knows what' substances!  And the idea that their protein is 'good quality' ...well that's  rather debatable it seems. After contacting another vet online he said that the good quality meat protein foods, which I suggested as possibilities for Harvey and score highly on the directory, were not  for 'my particular dog'  and of course he suggested royal canin or hills. No suggestion or advice about alternatives or nutritional requirements. It seemed abit like a 'palming off situation' to me at the time!  I understand that Harvey's needs differ from the 'average ' healthy senior dog and that some foods are not suited for health issues but this vet's rather blinkered views of RC or hills was frustrating. All I want for Harvey is a good quality food which meets his nutritional needs and which he enjoys eating! Perhaps vets need to start doing some research of their own and begin giving pet owners more adequate nutritional advice and open their minds up more to a dog food world that is not made up of RC or Hills!

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