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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,

I have spent most of today browsing these great forums but figured I'd start a thread. We are the brand new owners of a beautiful black purebred lab. We have had her just over a week and she is 11 weeks old today.

We started her on Purina One dog food before I realized that this grocery store stuff is garbage, so am looking at getting a Premium dry food.

It seems our pup is always hungry, I am following the feeding guidelines on the back of the Purina One but they seem low, it says around 1.5 cups per day, is that right for a growing lab pup full of energy? I realize labs will just eat forever if given the chance, but I think she is waking up a lot at night simply from being hungry.

In terms of dog food to get, from reviews and this site I have narrowed it down to the following in order from most preferred to least. Is any better than the other?

Orijen Puppy
Innova Puppy Dry
Wellness Super5Mix Large Breed Puppy
Acana Puppy Large Breed
Blue Buffalo Chicken & Brown Rice for Puppies
California Natural Chicken Meal & Rice Puppy
Innova Large Breed Puppy Dry (I would prefer to get this large breed since I have a lab, however the regular Innova puppy mix gets better ratings)

Thanks for any help!!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
thanks for your opinions guys and any others are still welcome. We love our pup but would love her to sleep through the night or at least close to it haha
 

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Ooh I have the answer for that one too! Play with her as much as possible and take her for a walk right before you go to bed, that should wear her out and make her want to sleep for a while. And ignore her if she cries at night (you're crating her right?) so she'll learn that the night time is for sleeping.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
yeah we make sure and play her out before bed. We do take her for a walk but it only lasts about 5 minutes as she gets too cold (I live where it gets to -50 with the wind chill :()

Yes we have her crated. She is amazing during the day as she is alone for 4 hour stretches and has never had an accident in her cage. At night though we have her sleeping in her crate in our bedroom otherwise she cries and cries. I do agree we should try ignore her when she wakes up however it can be tough when she screams so loud and does seem to pee each time we take her out overnight. Of course my wife kicking me out of bed to take her out doesn't help either lol.

The funny thing is at the end of her first week she had two amazing nights where she slept through the night, but she is slipping back into 2-3 wake ups again.

Will keep at it!!
 

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It seems our pup is always hungry, I am following the feeding guidelines on the back of the Purina One but they seem low, it says around 1.5 cups per day, is that right for a growing lab pup full of energy?
Pups are always hungry. That's normal. Generally the amount recommended on the dog food packages are too high. If you aren't careful, you will have a fat puppy. You should be able to see the back to ribs and see a definate waste line behind the ribcage when viewed from above. You souldn't see hip bones or spine. Thin is always better than fat.

I realize labs will just eat forever if given the chance, but I think she is waking up a lot at night simply from being hungry.
She is 11 weeks old. Babies don't sleep through the night. Their biological clock just isn't developed yet. She will sleep all night soon. Also remember her little bladder can't hold her pee all night. It's still a few more weeks until she has developed to the point she can do that. At her age, about 4 or 5 hours is the most she can hold it.

There is a rule of thumb about how long a puppy can hold his pee. The number of months of age + 1 is the number of hours a pup should be able to hold it. So a 4 month old puppy should be able to hold it for 5 hours. Your pup is just 3 months old so 4 hours is not unusual. Of course this is very general and all pups will vary one way or the other.
 

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At night though we have her sleeping in her crate in our bedroom otherwise she cries and cries.
Remember that she is away from Mama and siblings for the first time in her short life. In the wild she would be with them for a year or more. She would never be alone under any circumstances. She is afraid and being in the room with you comforts her. She knows she is not alone. She can smell you and hear you move and breathe. She has someone to protect her.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the comments!!!

After browsing around a few pet stores, I am still set on getting Orijen Puppy Large Breed for our fur baby. I want what is best for pup so I have to ask, is there going to be any harm in feeding her such a high protein diet? That would be the only thing holding me back from switching her to Orijen, if the high protein was going to cause her any short or long term ill effects.

If not Orijen, it seems Wellness Large Breed Puppy might be a good choice, or even Performatrin which is readily available and seems to get not bad reviews either with decent ingredients.

Any opinions on the Protein debate would be much appreciated!!! Maybe I need a low Protein option until she is on Adult food then I could switch to Orijen?
 

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high protein is only a problem if its not formulated for growing pups, which usually means higher calcium/phosphorus levels that are too high and could contribute to bone issues down the road.
As long as the food is for puppies or an all life stage food like Acana provincial ( which is a bit lower protein), youre fine. Make sure to always have fresh water available though because higher protein content requires extra moisture to balance it out.
 

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I want what is best for pup so I have to ask, is there going to be any harm in feeding her such a high protein diet?
No, protein is the building block of muscles.

Any opinions on the Protein debate would be much appreciated!!! Maybe I need a low Protein option until she is on Adult food then I could switch to Orijen?
Don't be too concerned about protein. The thing to be concerned about is whether its plant or animal based protein. Animal based protein is good, plant, not so good.
 

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high protein is only a problem if its not formulated for growing pups, which usually means higher calcium/phosphorus levels that are too high and could contribute to bone issues down the road.
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High in animal source proteins will never be a problem, for tissue then can keep up with bone growth. When diets are too weak in animal source proteins, that creates the bone issue problems. Plant protein, gluten proteins, hold zero 'biological' value and does not grow tissue, only animal source proteins will grow the tissue. High in protein will never be a problem then assuming it has the right proteins in the ration.

I would suggest try to find a ration without a ton of plant matter, fruits and vegetables. You want animal source proteins in the diet. You may want to add your own fresh meats in to the mix like raw chopped hamburger (get the higher fat content as opposed to the 90% lean) to ensure your dog is getting enough animal source proteins. He will fare a lot better in the long run and have overall better health IMO when you make it a priority to offer as much animal source proteins you can deliver.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
thanks for the comments guys!! Picked up some Orijen Large Breed Puppy. Gave her a few pieces and she went crazy!!! Now begins the slow transition process!!
 

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Yay! You should definitely love the results you see with Orijen as opposed to any other food that "seems to get not bad reviews either with decent ingredients." I find when I catch myself saying things like that, I end up answering my own question :smile:
 
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... We are the brand new owners of a beautiful black purebred lab. We have had her just over a week and she is 11 weeks old today.
Just wanted to say, congratulations and best wishes with your new addition. I have a male yellow Lab and I just adore him! I commend you for wanting to give your Lab puppy nothing but the best.

I think Orijen Puppy is an excellent choice! Have fun with your new Lab.
 

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Yikes, no wonder your poor puppy is hungry!

if you are only feeding 1 1/2 cups per day!! I am a Labrador breeder for 10 years, at her age she should be eating at least 1 to 1 1/4 cups 3 times per day! You are starving your puppy! Though it is important not to let your puppy get fat you also need to make sure she gets enough nutrients to grow properly. When she is finishing every meal every time you will need to increase the amount she is eating. Lab puppies generally peak out at around 6 months old, then as growth slows down you can start cutting back, it is a line you have to walk as to feeding enough for growth but not too much so the puppy gets fat. I feed my puppies Innova large breed puppy food.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I agree Forest, the Purina One puppy feeding guidelines seem way off. We are now transitioning to Orijen and are following their guidelines. Now that Pup is 3 months old as of yesterday it recommends 3.75 - 4.5 cups per day.

Her poops are much softer now, verging (but not quite) on diarrhea. Is this normal on Orijen or should I expect this in the transition process until we are fully switched?
 

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I agree Forest, the Purina One puppy feeding guidelines seem way off. We are now transitioning to Orijen and are following their guidelines. Now that Pup is 3 months old as of yesterday it recommends 3.75 - 4.5 cups per day.

Her poops are much softer now, verging (but not quite) on diarrhea. Is this normal on Orijen or should I expect this in the transition process until we are fully switched?
I have a Boxer puppy who is now 14 weeks old. He was on Orijen Puppy and had diarrhea. We fed just a small amount of cooked brown rice with it and that helped solidify him. We fed 1/4 cup brown rice per 1 cup kibble. Once we switched him to Orijen Large Breed Puppy, he had no more diarrhea.

Which one are you feeding?
 

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I have a Boxer puppy who is now 14 weeks old. He was on Orijen Puppy and had diarrhea. We fed just a small amount of cooked brown rice with it and that helped solidify him. We fed 1/4 cup brown rice per 1 cup kibble. Once we switched him to Orijen Large Breed Puppy, he had no more diarrhea.

Which one are you feeding?
Thanks for the info! We are also on Orijen Large Breed Puppy, so hopefully things get better otherwise maybe your rice trick is worth trying? I'd like to give it a few more days at least. She is very good and had no accidents in her crate/in the house but when she does poop 2-3 times a day its been a little less solid than is normal I think...
 
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