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Discussion Starter #1
We have an extremely active 2 year old male German Shorthaired Pointer named Zio who needs to gain a little weight. We have always been concerned that he isn't eating enough to maintain his high energy level, and this week's visit to the vet for his scheduled shots kind of confirmed it. Although he's healthy & happy, he's lost a pound since his last visit in November... something he really didn't need to do. Right now he's at 56 pounds and we'd all like to see him at least at 60.

We had him on Purina Pro Plan (shreded blend) Lamb & Rice, but about 2 months ago, on the advice of a trainer with whom he was boarding, we switched him to Exceed Chicken. We did this because the trainer told us that as an active, working hunter, he needed this extra protein. (Also, it was what he feeds his Gordon Setters.)

During the day he'll get as many carrots as he wants, and a "Greenie". As a training reward during the day he may get some Iams Puppy biscuits (easy to break up into training-treat-size & he'll do anything for them <g>). Also, since he has seasonal allergies, at this time of the year he'll get cheese a couple of times a day to hide the pills.

Please, no lectures on his current food. We know it's not working for him, and want to change it. However, we ARE open to suggestions on what commercial product to feed this very active, high-energy hunting dog that is good for him as well as reasonably priced.

Thanks,
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I recommend a grain free, high protien food. Innova Evo is excellent for performance dogs, as well as Wellness Core. Merrick Before the Grain isn't bad, I'm just not a huge fan of their formulas.
Canned food usually helps pack on the pounds, too.
You could also replace the carrot treats with chicken cubes, boiled or raw.
 

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I agree with CorgiPaws. There's also the Blue Buffalo Wilderness, if you only have a Petsmart in your area. That's another good high protein, high fat, high calorie food for your dog that's also grain free (or at least low carb) and all natural.

You could also try the freeze-dried beef liver for treats instead of carrots to help gain a little weight since your dog gets no nutritional benefit from raw carrots anyway.

You could also start adding the grease from your foods to his food, like if you cook ground beef or chicken and have a bunch of grease left over, pour it on his food, I'm sure he'll love it. Also, feed him your left over meat/fat/gristle from every meal.
 

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Definitely look into a grain free food. I have a 3 year old weimaraner, thats 70 lbs, hes also very high energy and stocky built. His ideal weight is between 65-70 lbs. I rotate between the kibbles, but he really likes Welness core chicken and Acana provincial.
Some other grainfree foods to look into:

Orijen
Merrick B.G
Blue Buffalo Wilderness
Innova Evo
Taste of the Wild
Canidae Grain Free
Fromm Surf and Turf
Natures Variety Instinct
Solid Gold Barking at the Moon

Price wise, I would have to say Taste of the Wild is the least expensive.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks!

Thanks for the great ideas, everyone! I will start checking out those brands you mentioned: we have a Petco and a Petsmart quite close to us. Please keep those suggestions coming. :biggrin:

AAMOF we do sometimes pour pan juices over Zio's dry food. I guess my biggest concern is that he will only want "people food", turning his nose up at his own.
:eek: No one likes a begging dog that bothers you (or your guests) at the table because your food is more appealing than his!

Meanwhile, the main reason he gets carrots is that as a wee puppy we wanted to find some outlet for his chewing. We knew there was no real nutritional value to the carrots & that they would go through his system fairly quickly. He has jaws of steel, this boy, and easily chews through toys that advertise themselves as "indestructible" or "for aggressive chewers". So carrots, rawhides, and nylabones saved our furniture & shoes. It must have worked because in almost 2 years the only casualty was one pair of my hubby's Birkenstocks back when Zio was 6 months old. :wink:

Thanks again,


 

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Petco carries Wellness Core and Solid Gold BATM, while Petsmart has the Blue Buffalo Wilderness.
Here are the locations that carry Taste of the Wild and most likely other foods as well:

Petland of Tampa
17657 N Dale Mabry Hwy
Tampa, Florida 33548
Phone: 813-908-7387
Distance: 4.7 miles

Pet Mart
8925 North 56th Street
Temple Terrace, Florida 33617
Phone: 813-985-8788
Distance: 4.9 miles

Dog Lovers of North Tampa
13860 N Dale Mabry Hwy
Tampa, Florida 33618
Phone: 813-962-8646
Distance: 7.1 miles


Feed Depot
15001 North Nebraska Avenue
Tampa, Florida 33613
Phone: 813-977-4702
Distance: 7.3 miles

The Dog's Meow
16311 N Florida Ave
Lutz, Florida 33549
Phone: 813-960-5309
Distance: 8.4 miles


Feed Depot @ Fox's Corners
16820 Gunn Highway
Odessa, Florida 33556
Phone: 813-920-2514
Distance: 12.1 miles


D & D Feed & Farm Supply
10610 McIntosh Rd
Thonotosassa, Florida 33592
Phone: 813-986-8588
Distance: 13.1 miles


Bloomingdale Pet Supply
3110 Lithia Pinecrest Road
Valrico, Florida 33594
Phone: 813-662-9296
Distance: 13.6 miles


Remington Feed
9419 US Highway 301
Riverview, Florida 33569
Phone: 813-672-1244
Distance: 14.5 miles


Pet City Associates, Inc.
2119 Collier Highway
Land O Lakes, Florida 34639
Phone: 813-242-7600
Distance: 14.5 miles


Munchies
3705 Tampa Road
Suite 9
Oldsmar, Florida 34677
Phone: 813-925-0449
Distance: 14.5 miles
 

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if you have a tractor supply company close by, they carry blue buffalo, cheaper the petsmart too, and taste of the wild

heck you can even take your pup in there, well in mine you can
 

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Discussion Starter #8
if you have a tractor supply company close by, they carry blue buffalo, cheaper the petsmart too, and taste of the wild

heck you can even take your pup in there, well in mine you can
It's true... we've brought Zio into a couple of feed stores and they are more than happy to have him there. AAMOF, our friends have one near their house in Chelsea, AL. The last time we were there must have been at least 6 months ago, yet whenever they walk in, the owners ask them about Zio and when he's coming to visit! How cool:cool: is that?

Take care, eh?!

 

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Discussion Starter #9
Petco carries Wellness Core and Solid Gold BATM, while Petsmart has the Blue Buffalo Wilderness.
Here are the locations that carry Taste of the Wild and most likely other foods as well:
Wow... awesome list. Thanks!!! :biggrin:
 

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We are currently feeding Nature's Variety Prairie dog food (Chicken & Brown Rice formula) to all 5 of our dogs, including our 4 month old Yorkie puppy. It is formulated for all life stages and our dogs love it. It is a very good quality food. Nature's Variety also has a grain free food called Nature's Variety Instinct. The Instinct line is basically the grain free version of the Prairie line. Worth taking a look anyway. Also, they have a 'try it' coupon where you can get a free 5 lb bag with purchase of a bag (any size).
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)

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Discussion Starter #15
good choice, remember to transition slowly since its grain free and can cause diarhhea.
Absolutely! We've started adding the Evo & subtracting the Exceed a couple of days ago. Zio is really interested in this new food! The first day I noticed a couple of bits of the Exceed on the floor and about 1/4 cup of it left at the bottom of his bowl, which he ultimately ate. (But only because he finally realized that he wasn't going to fineagle anything else out of us. :biggrin:)

Today a similar thing happened, so just out of curiosity I put down a couple of pieces of the Evo next to the leftover Exceed. He immediately ate them & still ignored the Exceed.

Nuff said?! ;)




 

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oh and remember you'll probably need to feed less of the Evo since it's so much higher fat, protein, and calorie than the other food!
 

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Abady has a great line.
I was just going to mention that.... "classic" granular is my choice for my Field Setter. She will be entering her 6th season of hunting and is absolutetly fantastic in the field. Never any health issues or problems. Abady granular foods IMO are the best out there when it comes to dry commercial feeds. Foods like EVO and Orijen talk a good game, but when you look at both ingredient profiles they're loaded up with the fruits and veggies.

good luck with the EVO Cheryl

Charlie
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Zio's eating habits haven't changed on the Evo even though he's been scaled back to 2.5 cups/day. He's not gulping it all down in one go like a poor underfed stray dog, nor is he begging any more than usual. (Hey, is that STEAK you're eating? Can I have some if I look at your soulfully?)

However, what HAS changed is that he doesn't seem to be having as much waste product. Kind of makes you wonder exactly how much of the FOUR cups he needed with Exceed actually were useable nutrition.

Hmm...
 
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