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Knowing When Your Dog Has Eaten Enough

A to Z Challenge – V – Sponsored by Natural Pet Pantry

Our puppies first tasted raw the evening we got home from Idaho (a 7 hour drive that would have sucked, but we had PUPPIES!!!).

They were so teeny that we feed them from the same dish and quickly realized that this was going to be a problem, because they were eating machines.

Their puppy dishes came the cute, rubber bottom dishes placed against the wall.  Much better, but they were still eating too fast and although raw dog food is supposedly the cure all in the minds of some, I was still worried about bloat.

And the puppies were still hungry; they’d finish up and run to eat Rodrigo and Sydney’s food (something our adult dogs aren’t used to) so there was lots of lines being drawn in the sand at meal time.

Slow feeder for raw dog food…

So I started the search for a stainless steel slow feeder dog dish.  We picked ours up at Pet Pros and they are amazing, now the puppies finish their food when Rodrigo and Sydney finish.

We have the amazing raised dog dishes for Rodrigo and Sydney; they’re custom made by Trendy Pet based on our dogs’ height and I planned to get a set for the puppies when they were bigger, but I changed my mind.  They eat too fast.

The slow feeder bowls are just their speed and although they still eat fast, the feeders (and some distance between the puppies) are slowing them down.

But maybe they’re really hungry…

This is a question that came up a lot as the puppies were growing and I was assured that they’re just fine with the serving amount we gave them (10% of their body weight).

I did the rib and spine test I shared on Day H where I shared how much raw dog food we feed our pack.  And someone pointed out that puppies go through growth spurts – they’re hungriest (voracious) when this is happening.  We’ll add more food, but not much; instead, we chose to really watch how their developing and J and I communicate often about the treats we’re giving our dogs.  We developed this habit when Sydney topped the scale at 90+ pounds (she’s now 70#).

Purina’s Body Condition Chart

Credit: Courtesy of Nestle Purina PetCare Co.

I’m certain that there are all kinds of medical reasons why a dog might still be hungry, but in our experience, our dogs just love to eat.  The girls are the worst offenders – totally food motivated.  The boys are a little more laid back about it.

Me?  I’m a foodie.  As I’m typing, I’m thinking of the catfish meal at Cheesecake Factory.  Damn it’s good.  And this is why I’m increasing my workouts from 3 days a week to 6 days a week.  But we can’t count on our dogs to have the forethought to do that, so we need to watch their food intake and exercise.

But those puppy eyes do get to me sometime and they get a little extra treat.   Have you been suckered by a sweet face recently?

Yesterday was U for Underwhelmed with a Local Pet Store

Tomorrow is W for Warming and Cooling Foods



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