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Old 08-18-2009, 10:52 AM
 
Location: Redondo Beach, CA
10 posts, read 23,560 times
Reputation: 21

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He's a 45 lb (not overweight) shepherd/basenji mix.

I'm currently doing a mix of wet Merrick canned (1/4 cup) mixed with Canidae chicken & rice kibble (2/3 cup) per meal.

He's a food-gobbler & since he's so old, keeping his teeth clean is becoming super important, so I need to consider getting the wet food out of his bowl and forcing him to chew his food more (the wet food makes it like goulash and he just slurps it down without chewing, and the Canidae kibble size is pretty small so he can choke that down without chewing too.)

The only large kibble I've been able to find that he's really forced to chew up (size of medium gumballs) is vet prescribed T/D dental formula, but I just read the ingredients and am horrified at what's in it (and upon reading another thread about corn being a potential cause of death-farts, and knowing that ground corn is #2 on the ingred list, and knowing his farts have worsened exponentially since giving this kibble as a treat, it's the end of the road for that stuff!)

A pet supply store recommended EVO which is a "similar to raw diet" high-protein, med-size kibble, and he does chew that up (I am testing that right now), but I'm worried that an older couch-potato dog doesn't need all that protein in his diet. (or is it that he doesn't need a lot of grain in his diet? I'm confused about this...)

I gotta rethink his diet. Any suggestions for what kind of diet would be good for him? (my vet recommended the trashy T/D diet, so I'm not too interested in asking for her advice)
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Old 08-18-2009, 12:36 PM
 
1,501 posts, read 5,178,991 times
Reputation: 1128
Is there a Holistic vet anywhere near you? They are experts when it comes to nutrition.

As far as teeth cleaning, crunchy food does not help-clean teeth. (Same as if we eat nothing but crunchy foods. Doggie would need to floss.)

Either raw bones (after doing some research; never cooked though, as they splinter and cause many problems) or some sort of nylabone which would not splinter. Hopefully others in-the-know- with first hand experience about these will chi

I think EVO has a version lower in protein. I'd stick with the good brands you are on, JMO.
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Old 08-18-2009, 12:45 PM
 
Location: Redondo Beach, CA
10 posts, read 23,560 times
Reputation: 21
He's not a chewer, so a nylabone would sit in the corner untouched. Maybe a raw bone (I know he would LOVE to get his teeth on a cooked bone...) Where would I get a raw bone- just from a butcher? Beef? Pork? Lamb?
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Old 08-18-2009, 01:01 PM
 
Location: Wasilla, Alaska
17,850 posts, read 20,162,572 times
Reputation: 6482
Quote:
Originally Posted by Iamanne View Post
He's a 45 lb (not overweight) shepherd/basenji mix.

I'm currently doing a mix of wet Merrick canned (1/4 cup) mixed with Canidae chicken & rice kibble (2/3 cup) per meal.

He's a food-gobbler & since he's so old, keeping his teeth clean is becoming super important, so I need to consider getting the wet food out of his bowl and forcing him to chew his food more (the wet food makes it like goulash and he just slurps it down without chewing, and the Canidae kibble size is pretty small so he can choke that down without chewing too.)

The only large kibble I've been able to find that he's really forced to chew up (size of medium gumballs) is vet prescribed T/D dental formula, but I just read the ingredients and am horrified at what's in it (and upon reading another thread about corn being a potential cause of death-farts, and knowing that ground corn is #2 on the ingred list, and knowing his farts have worsened exponentially since giving this kibble as a treat, it's the end of the road for that stuff!)

A pet supply store recommended EVO which is a "similar to raw diet" high-protein, med-size kibble, and he does chew that up (I am testing that right now), but I'm worried that an older couch-potato dog doesn't need all that protein in his diet. (or is it that he doesn't need a lot of grain in his diet? I'm confused about this...)

I gotta rethink his diet. Any suggestions for what kind of diet would be good for him? (my vet recommended the trashy T/D diet, so I'm not too interested in asking for her advice)
The Candidae kibble you are feeding him is a top quality kibble, but apparently they do not have a "large breed" variety that contains larger sized kibble.

Veterinarians learn about dog nutrition from the courses provided by dog food manufacturers, then they try to sell their product in their offices. Never buy dog food from a veterinarian. It is the worst possible food you could buy, particularly Science Diet.

I feed my Mastiff "Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul, Large Breed" which has kibble about 1/2" in diameter. It does not get mushy when I add canned food (I use Merrick as well). However, I think any large breed good quality kibble would perform equally well in that regard.

There are also dental bones (Nylabone Dental Chews, for example) and treats you can buy that will help remove tarter from your dog's teeth. This might be a better option for you, rather than changing his food.

Dogs have a very difficult time digesting seeds, nuts, and grains. Grains are also the leading cause of allergic symptoms, hair loss, and other skin disorders in dogs. So they should be avoided.

With regard to protein levels, dogs are quite able to tolerate diets with protein levels higher than 30% on a dry weight basis. As far as elderly dogs are concerned, there are different opinions:
  • An elderly dog requires more protein than a young dog to restore a normal level of proteins in the body, after a period of deficiency (Wannemacher, 1966). This suggests that protein requirements of aging dogs could be higher;
  • In older dogs, the muscular mass is better preserved with a high protein diet (46%) rather than with a low-protein diet (16%) (Kealy, 1998).
The opposing position suggests that high levels of protein and phosphorus in an aging dog's diet may cause kidney failure. A protein restriction becomes necessary only when the kidneys become unable to perform a correct blood filtration. At that stage, clinical signs of chronic renal deficiency become obvious - the dog drinks and urinates more and the blood and urinary parameters increase. When this clinical stage is reached, it usually means that 75% of the kidney at least has been damaged. Only a minority of older dogs are concerned by this problem.
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Old 08-18-2009, 04:06 PM
 
Location: Wasilla, Alaska
17,850 posts, read 20,162,572 times
Reputation: 6482
Quote:
Originally Posted by Iamanne View Post
He's not a chewer, so a nylabone would sit in the corner untouched. Maybe a raw bone (I know he would LOVE to get his teeth on a cooked bone...) Where would I get a raw bone- just from a butcher? Beef? Pork? Lamb?
Look for 4" raw beef shin bones, which include the marrow. They sell them in pairs, frozen, typically in the same place where you find raw diets for dogs. Or you could ask the butcher at your local grocery store. They will usually have some beef bones around that include marrow.

While bones with marrow are very good for dogs, they do not help clean the teeth much because the bones are too big for them to break.


Since your dog is not much of a chewer, consider dental dog treats. Such as:
  • Fresh Bites Dental Dog Treats
  • Bright Bites Daily Dental Cool Peppermint Flavor Medium Dog Treats;
  • Nylabone Natural Zzazz! Edible Dental Action Dog Chew; or
  • Ark Naturals Breath-Less Chewable BrushLess Toothpaste
Or perhaps dental care toys, like Booda's Fresh N' Floss 2 Knot Cotton Rope Tug for Dogs.
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Old 08-18-2009, 04:44 PM
 
Location: Stuck in NE GA right now
4,585 posts, read 10,806,001 times
Reputation: 6616
I brush my dogs teeth 4 to 5 times a week...it's the best way to keep them clean.
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