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Dog foods / Re: Mixer advice
« Last post by MrAllium on Today at 06:40 »
That makes perfect sense. Thank you for the advice and further information/reading.

Much appreciated.
General discussion / Re: Lentils in poop
« Last post by Dottie on Yesterday at 19:55 »
I can't say whether the amount you are giving is too much but from what you describe re the output it would see so. It sounds as if Butternut Box did not suit Rebecca's dog. I had my two on it for a little while and I never saw undigested food in their poo. However, one developed what I suspect is a legume intolerance.  It goes to show that no two dogs are the same.

You are giving two high quality foods and I just think that your dog's digestion cannot handle it, especially as he has been on poor quality food for so long.

As I mentioned before, I think it would be better to stick to one product, whichever you prefer.  If your dog doesn't like kibble on it's own you could maybe add a little cooked, mashed non starchy vegetables. A small amount of suitable fruit can be added.

Another thing that might help is a course of canine specific probiotic eg YuDigest. It often helps when transitioning dogs to a new food.
Dog foods / Re: Mixer advice
« Last post by Dottie on Yesterday at 19:41 »
Mixer biscuit is mostly carbohydrate. Years ago pet owners used it with wet dog food such as Winalot to bulk it up and give the dog something to crunch on. Some people still use it with wet food. The Wainwright's complete will have higher than average carbohydrate so it unnecessary to add more in the form of mixer biscuit. Just use the kibble and a wet food topper as described in the previous post and your dog should be alright. Be careful not to overfeed. As you are adding wet food it may be necessary to reduce the kibble a little.
General discussion / Re: Lentils in poop
« Last post by Rebecca Forrest on Yesterday at 17:46 »
I found that when I gave my dog butter nut box the lentils and the vegetables came out the same as you said. I changed to different dog fresh food, as there was no lentils and he did better, but he did not put any weight on so have moved him on to cold pressed and if he does not put any weight on with this he will go on to pure , one you make up with warm water. Sounds like your dog has lovely home now .Keep up the good work. :)
Introductions / Re: My new dog - Bramble
« Last post by JoBramble on Yesterday at 16:24 »
I make sure everything is weighed, I never guess. My previous dogs were mini dachshunds and were free fed kibble and had fresh twice a day they would not eat it mixed, they were very picky and a bit neurotic about food so were never overweight. Bramble won't eat the kibble by itself according to the shelter I have not tried it with her myself with the new kibble.

I looked on the body condition chart and she looks in between the overweight and obese body shapes. She has lost 1 kg so far and this seems to have come off her neck area. She had put on some muscle as well and her legs look better. She needs to get to 19kg to have her spay surgery according to the vet.
General discussion / Re: Lentils in poop
« Last post by JoBramble on Yesterday at 16:15 »
I have been giving her 100g of the Essential Contour twice a day so 200g total plus 1/3rd pouch of 400g butternut box so 266g a day. She refuses to eat dry without some wet added. Is this too much? She has very few treats maybe 6 tiny fish fishy biscuits a day. She walks 5 miles a day, but does not really run about in the garden or play very much she loses interest and just like to sniff about. This is the same amount the shelter recommended in quantity but the food might have more calories than the Royal Canin Satiety. Her poop is a reasonably firm but the lentils are visible in it. 
Dog foods / Re: Mixer advice
« Last post by MrAllium on Yesterday at 12:46 »
That's really helpful, thank you.
So am I right in thinking that I don't need a specific 'mixer' that one can buy in the supermarkets? It's really just a case of using a mix of wet and dry foods?
We have a number of threads about obesity and weight loss so I will gather some of the information into this designated thread for easy access. Those threads can be found by using the search box at the top of the Board Index. The term 'weight loss' will bring up relevant ones.

These are just general guidelines, some of which I have found helpful in the past.

Psychological aspects:
It's useful to address why a dog has become obese. Lack of exercise is one aspect. Many pet owners find pleasure in feeding their dog, especially if it enjoys eating. Before dieting a dog it is worth thinking carefully about the health problems that can occur due to obesity. In addition it can shorten it's life.  A quick Internet search will reveal the negative effects of obesity. If the owner can take this on board it will increase motivation and make helping the dog to achieve a healthy weight much easier.  Many dogs scrounge and if yours does this, you may need to develop strategies for dealing with it. At meal times it is kinder to shut the dog in another room rather than be tempted to feed it. If there is someone in the house who is persistently feeding the dog then that has to be tackled.  It is kinder not to be tempted to use the dog as a receptacle for meal leftovers.

How do you know your dog is overweight?
Sometimes it is quite obvious that the dog is overweight but it can be subjective. Regularly using body condition scoring as a tool is helpful; there are many charts and videos about the subject on the Internet. Example 1  and Example 2 I also weigh my dogs from time to time because I know what the correct weight is for them but with mixed breeds it is not always as straightforward.

Weighing food
When starting out on a diet it is essential to weigh food so you know exactly what is going into your dog's mouth. Digital scales will give better accuracy - Example.  Other reasons why weighing is important:
* The owner overestimates the amount of food that the dog actually needs. The owner will not have to judge this if the food is weighed properly.
* If weight loss is not occurring on any given amount of food it is necessary to reduce it by 10%. If it hasn't been weighed in the first place the owner will not be able to do this correctly.
Manufacturers' RDAs (recommended daily allowance) are frequently higher than necessary. When starting out on a diet, it might be helpful to choose the bottom figure for the size and weight of your dog and take off 10%. If the dog does not begin to lose weight, it can be reduced again by 10%. Once the weight starts coming off stick with that quantity but continue to weigh the food.

Aims of dieting
Just as the weight crept on slowly and gradually, the pet owner needs to aim for a slow, steady reduction. Sometimes veterinary surgeries run weight loss clinics and these can be helpful to increase motivation and get advice. Also the dog will be weighed regularly so you know you are going in the right (or wrong) direction. 

Exercise can improve the speed at which weight is lost and improve fitness but it is inadvisable to increase exercise markedly, at least at first. Over exercising, particularly energetic exercise is likely to strain the dog and can lead to other health problems, especially if they are unfit. Continue with moderate, gentle exercise. Giving the correct type and amount of food is better for the dog long term. 

My personal view is that if a dog is getting a good quality diet, treats should not be necessary. In fact regularly giving treats could perhaps increase the dog’s fixation on food. If the owner wishes to continue with treats, reduce the food slightly to take account of this and choose low calorie ones.

Types of food:
There are many types foods that claim to help with weight loss. They are often labelled as 'light' or similar.  If the dog is doing well on it’s current food there should be no reason to change. Simply reducing the amount and not giving anything else should effect weight loss.

A dog that is dieting needs higher levels of good quality, digestible protein so that it does not lose muscle. Fat can be a problem so look for a product that does not have high amounts of fat.

To simplify matters, it can be helpful not to mix foods because it can add calories. If dry food is given then it is alright to enhance it with cooked, low fat protein and non starchy cooked, mashed vegetables but don’t add carbohydrate and reduce the food slightly to take this into account. Link.

Please share experiences if you have successfully dieted your dog.
General discussion / Re: Lentils in poop
« Last post by Dottie on Yesterday at 09:01 »
Hello again. It sounds as if you might be inadvertently overfeeding. You are using two high quality products. I have answered your previous query about weight loss and this question confirms my feeling that you need to decide which food to use, rather than feed two types of complete food.  Fresh food is good for dogs and Butternut Box has a high nutritional rating but for now it might be best to stick with just the Essential Contour because it is a  good product, is easily weighed and you can take some out of the daily allowance to use for treats if you wish.  Remember that the recommended daily allowance as described on the packet of food is often more than a dog actually needs so it is best to start right at the bottom and perhaps take off 10%. For instance, if the lower end for your dog's size and weight is 300g, give 270g. Monitor the dog's weight weekly if possible.
Introductions / Re: My new dog - Bramble
« Last post by Dottie on Yesterday at 08:49 »
Hello and welcome to the forum. Well done for giving a Bramble a new home. It sounds as if you have made a good start.

There are many health problems that can arise due to obesity so it is good that you are trying to address this. We have quite a few threads on the forum about this and having just searched using the term 'weight loss' I have found the following but there are more:

Obesity and weight loss thread
Weight loss
Need a weight loss food and fast

You can search for additional material using the search box, top right.

Essential Contour is a good quality food and has a nutritional rating of 91% - link. Protein is above average, fat is average and carbohydrate is above average. Butternut Box is also a good quality fresh food and can be fed as the whole diet or part in conjunction with other products. Both are complete foods.   

My personal feeling is that with a dog who needs to lose weight it is best to keep it simple and just feed one type of complete food. If it is weighed properly and the dog is not given anything else it will quickly become apparent if the quantity is correct and you can adjust by 10% as required.  Dry food can be enhanced by using suitable (non starchy) cooked, mashed vegetables and it will help to sate the dog's appetite. More information here.

3kg is a lot to lose so take your time and aim for a steady weight loss. It is absolutely essential to weigh the food accurately so that you can reduce it gradually (by 10%) if weight loss does not occur. Also, only give the dog it's rations and no extras. If you wish to give treats, reduce the food a little.  Don't over exercise your  dog in an attempt to encourage weight loss. It can be too much of a strain on the dog. Just aim for gentle, frequent walks at the moment. Diet will reduce weight better than trying to get it off by over  exercising them, particularly strenuous exercise.

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