I’ve been feeding my 2 female poodles (4 and 5 years old) Taste of the Wild High Prairie, with crude protein content at 32%. My dogs are not very active, and our back yard is small, so they can’t run too much. Unfortunately, I don’t get to take them on walks more than a few times a week. The dogs appear to be gaining a bit of weight, though they’re not super overweight yet. Should I be looking for a lower protein content food for them, or perhaps a weight management formula?
I wouldn’t mind keeping them on TOTW, since they love it and I feel good about its quality and ingredients, but I would like to be sure it’s the right fit for them.
I would probably reduce their intake just a bit. The feeding recommendations on the bags are just that – recommendations. It all depends on the dogs themselves on how they process the food. I also wouldn’t look for lower-protein food. Try feeding a little less for a while and see how they respond. If anything, you may need to find a lower-calorie food so that you can still feed them an amount that they are used to, but they would be getting fewer calories from it.
Possibly others may give you more recommendations, also on what brands might be good.
Just as an example, my 14.5-15-lb dog Bruno “should” get 1-1.5 cups of his current food daily. He gets a little over 1/2 cup (or a bit less than 3/4 cup) of his food together with additives, so calorie-wise he probably gets around 1 cup of dry per day, but it is not all from the dry. If I wanted him to lose weight, I would reduce the amount of dry I fed him as well as the amount of additives. But for his metabolism and daily exercise, the current plan works well for him and he is in his ideal body condition. Also, make sure you go by the body condition more so than the weight itself. Here is a link you may find helpful: http://fremontanimalmedicalclinic.com/dr.-lurz-s-tid-bits/how-to-body-condition-score-your-pet.html
I agree with everything Naturella has recommended!!
Protein is actually ideal for weight loss. Here’s some great information in the Journal of Nutrition.
“High-Protein Low-Carbohydrate Diets Enhance Weight Loss in Dogs”
“Weight Loss in Obese Dogs: Evaluation of a High-Protein, Low-Carbohydrate Diet”
For what it’s worth, I’ve had nine toy and small breed dogs on diets with protein amounts ranging from 45 to 54% that are also relatively inactive and do not have weight issues. Like Naturella recommended, consider lowering the amounts fed or even switching to a higher protein, lower carb food.
Thanks guys, this is super helpful. really appreciate the responses.
If you haven’t used this tool before I would definitely recommend it. I feed my dogs a variety of foods that are different calorie amounts (mostly high) and they are not super active, but continue to maintain ideal weight and muscle. Every time I try a new food I use this calculator to tell me how much to feed. Hasn’t been wrong yet!
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