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Old 07-16-2011, 12:32 AM   #1
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Question New member and breed, weight help.

Hello my name is Lacey. I have two dogs. One a pit bull mix and the other I have decided that I don't know her breed lol. I think she's a lab mix but I have no clue anymore so that is what brings me here.

I was wondering if you guys could help with narrowing her breed down. My grandpa adopted her in 2000, and left her to me in 2005. The shelter didn't know her exact breed either.

Also I was wondering if you could give me tips on how to help her lose weight. She has always been large thanks to my grandpa spoiling her.
She doesn't get scraps or anything. I know it's her "dog chow" food that she's getting too much of.
I think I am going to switch her to blue buffalo weight control.. but i'm not sure how much to give her since I don't know what he ideal weight should be. She is currently 80lbs even.

Thanks so much! Anything would help. I'll even take some hellos! :] Lol

Here are some photos of her. I know they're not great.
Oh she is 11 btw.














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Old 07-16-2011, 12:36 AM   #2
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Welcome Lacey :-) Glad you've joined us! What cute pictures, I love the expression on her face in the last one. What are your dog's names?
And... I know just the guy to help you with the feeding part of your weight loss plan for her. We are very fortunate to have an in-house nutrition guru... Vagreys :-)
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Old 07-16-2011, 12:45 AM   #3
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OH I can't believe I forgot to put their names LOL.
The one in the pictures above is Boob... my grandpa called her boob because she's a big boob! lol
My other (the pit mix) is Major. My dad named her that because when she sits she has very proper posture.

I'm glad I found this place, I picked it because it seemed to be pretty active compared to other forums I looked at. In house nutritionist you say, just what I was looking for! lol Thanks :]

This is Major (the cockapoo is Cindy, she recently passed away<3)

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Old 07-16-2011, 12:45 AM   #4
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Welcome to the forum. I love grey whiskers!! She is beautiful!

Major is quite handsome too. And Cindy looks like she was a cutie pie too. RIP
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Last edited by Little Lucy; 07-16-2011 at 12:48 AM.. Reason: posting at same time

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Old 07-16-2011, 01:13 AM   #5
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More people from Michigan.

Welcome to DF

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Old 07-16-2011, 01:18 AM   #6
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Thank you yes Cindy was the best little dog in the world. She basically grew up with me. I miss her so much. She was 13.
Major is a big baby. I call her puppy because she's such an active dog. :]

Lol yay Michigan! Thanks :]

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Old 07-16-2011, 01:42 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LaceyJacqueline View Post
...Also I was wondering if you could give me tips on how to help her lose weight. She has always been large thanks to my grandpa spoiling her. She doesn't get scraps or anything. I know it's her "dog chow" food that she's getting too much of. I think I am going to switch her to blue buffalo weight control.. but i'm not sure how much to give her since I don't know what he ideal weight should be. She is currently 80lbs even.
Hi, Lacey. Boob doesn't need a 'weight loss' dog food. She just needs to be fed an appropriate amount of normal food. If she is being free-fed, then she is not a self-regulating eater, meaning she doesn't stop until she's overfull. She should be getting a measured amount of food, twice a day. Weight loss foods use fillers to make the dog feel physically full on less nutrition. While feeling full is a good thing, the excess fiber and fillers aren't necessary or of particular value.

Her target weight is approximate, anyway, so you don't really need to know that, right now. Every dog is different, so her ideal weight is where her weight is when she is at good weight for her body, and you judge that by look and feel more than anything. You can use a target weight to get you into the ballpark, but then you will adjust at what looks and feels good on her. Right now, it is enough to know that she is seriously overweight and needs to lose weight.

Weight loss should be gradual, so not too hard on the system. Losing too much weight too fast is almost as hard on the body as being overweight. She's going to be losing weight for several months, so there is plenty of time to figure out what is ideal for her frame.

For now, what is she being fed, how often? If you can afford Blue Buffalo Weight Management, pick a good all-life-stages or adult food and go with a regular food for her. What are you going to feed her? Once I know those things, I can help you figure out how much to feed her.

ETA: You should also take her to the vet and have her checked for possible medical reasons for the excess weight, such as a thyroid problem (not uncommon in senior dogs).
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Old 07-16-2011, 02:30 AM   #8
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Thank you. She is on a scheduled feeding twice a day. The food scoop we have is 2 cups so she has been getting 4 cups a day. (which is probably too much) Plus when we had our little dog she would eat her food sometimes.
Right now she is eating Purina Dog Chow. :-/ My mom switched to it because it is affordable. They were on Purina senior 7+ for a long time before the switch. She switched about 6 months ago.
I would like to switch her to a healthier dog food that is better for her. (Major too) I will be buying their dog food from now on and I think I can manage Blue buffalo. Or is there another brand you'd recommend that is decent and a little cheaper? Either way I want them to be healthier and if I have to pay a little extra I will.
And since you said she doesn't need the weight management one I was thinking
Blue Buffalo Life Protection Large Breed Senior Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe (or adult)


Boob isn't a very active dog (much like her parent.. me) I blame most of this on me. I think that we will get healthier together lol. My goal is to have at least one walk a day to help her out. We have a large fenced yard and they do plenty of running out there but I think a walk will help all three of us.

I appreciate your help, thank you.

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Old 07-16-2011, 09:42 AM   #9
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Lacey, welcome to the Forum! Love the pictures. I'm sure you will enjoy this Forum. I learn something new every day. vagreys is always right on target. I will say that 4 cups is too much for a dog that size. I too, would take her to a vet to make sure she doesn't have any senior issues, and ask the vet what her ideal weight should be. Then slowly cut back her kibble. Do you add wet food to the kibble? I use Blue Buffalo and my dogs love it. The reason I'm asking if you add wet food to the kibble is, if the bag says 3 cups a day, and you add wet food, then you must subtract some of the kibble. Please post some more pictures. We LOVE pictures!

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Old 07-16-2011, 03:38 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LaceyJacqueline View Post
Thank you. She is on a scheduled feeding twice a day. The food scoop we have is 2 cups so she has been getting 4 cups a day. (which is probably too much) Plus when we had our little dog she would eat her food sometimes.
Great that she's on a schedule. She's at an appropriate weight for the amount and brand of food she has been being fed, given her lifestage and lifestyle. It is not an appropriate weight for her. Cut her back to 1-1/2 cups, twice daily, for now, starting right away. No extra snacks. If you use training treats, then use her kibble as training treats for now, and take it from her day's ration.

This is a 25% reduction in her food, and she should steadily lose weight at a rate of around 1 pound every 2 weeks or so. You can be a little more aggressive about the weight loss once she is more used to a ration for what should be closer to her correct weight. Right now, though, she is used to being overfed and will feel constantly hungry for awhile. This is why ruling out medical reasons for her weight is important. If she has a thyroid condition that leaves her hungry, anyway, trying to lose weight is going to be that much more difficult for her.
Quote:
...Right now she is eating Purina Dog Chow...
I'm not trying to make you or your mom feel bad about what you feed. Clearly, you know Purina Dog Chow is not optimal. We do what we can for our dogs, within our means. Purina Dog Chow Complete & Balanced has a score of -13 (out of 100) in my grading system, based purely on ingredients and manufacturing practices.
Quote:
...I would like to switch her to a healthier dog food that is better for her. (Major too) I will be buying their dog food from now on and I think I can manage Blue buffalo. Or is there another brand you'd recommend that is decent and a little cheaper? Either way I want them to be healthier and if I have to pay a little extra I will...I was thinking Blue Buffalo Life Protection Large Breed Senior Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe (or adult)
The Blue Buffalo formula you are considering scores a 97, again, based purely on ingredients and manufacturing processes. From one end of the spectrum to the other, you have many options within your means. It isn't necessary to strain your finances to make significant improvement in her diet. If you can afford Blue Buffalo, great. It's about twice the cost of what you're feeding, now. You can get a food of similar quality (not exactly the same) for about $5 more per bag than what you are feeding, now. Diamond Naturals Adult Chicken and Rice also scores a 97, and is available at a store local to you, at $28.99 for a 40-lb bag. Huge improvement in quality over what you are feeding, now, but within your means for feeding two good-sized dogs. It's certainly an option to consider. You can always upgrade from there, if you want to make further improvements to her food.
Quote:
...Boob isn't a very active dog...My goal is to have at least one walk a day to help her out. We have a large fenced yard and they do plenty of running out there but I think a walk will help all three of us.
An improved diet and more gentle exercise will be good for her in her senior years, and will certainly help her lose excess weight. I'll send you information about where you can find the Diamond Naturals, separately.
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