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  #1  
Old 01-17-2013, 10:54 PM
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Default Jose and JJ are on grain free diet but seem so hungry

My Jose and JJ just turned 10 and they are getting less active in their old age. They have gotten a little pudgy recently and I want to get them back to normal weight to prevent any health issues. One of them also has major allergy issues, so I wanted to switch to diet that might help with that. I tried a couple different weight control dog foods and then decided to try a grain free diet. We tried Nature's Vally kibble, which they liked, and most recently Evo kibble which they love. The problem is that I am feeding them the recommended amount and they still seem hungry. They follow me into the kitchen and have been begging for food like crazy. I usually end up giving them a snack because I worry I am not feeding them enough, but the weight loss process is going pretty slow as a result. I have been exercising with them more, but they are older so there is only so much they can do. Any thoughts?
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Old 01-17-2013, 11:43 PM

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Quote:
Originally Posted by JJJose View Post
My Jose and JJ just turned 10 and they are getting less active in their old age. They have gotten a little pudgy recently and I want to get them back to normal weight to prevent any health issues. One of them also has major allergy issues, so I wanted to switch to diet that might help with that. I tried a couple different weight control dog foods and then decided to try a grain free diet. We tried Nature's Vally kibble, which they liked, and most recently Evo kibble which they love. The problem is that I am feeding them the recommended amount and they still seem hungry. They follow me into the kitchen and have been begging for food like crazy. I usually end up giving them a snack because I worry I am not feeding them enough, but the weight loss process is going pretty slow as a result. I have been exercising with them more, but they are older so there is only so much they can do. Any thoughts?
Is it possible to increase their activity with more frequent walks? Like humans they need to burn more calories than they take in to lose weight. If they are not used to walking start slow and gradually build up so they don't hate you! This might be tough if you are in a winter climate but spring is around the corner.
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Old 01-17-2013, 11:50 PM
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I agree that if they are healthy dogs increasing their exercise would be the best way for them to lose weight. This will not only help them lose weight but it will also help their overall health.
The other idea is are they really hungry or just used to when you go toward the kitchen they are used to getting food. For instance anytime I walk into our utility room, where Jaxx's food is stored, he runs and thinks he is going to get food or a treat. Jaxx would eat anytime I put food in front of him. Although he does tell me if I forget to feed him at 3pm by going to the carpet in the kitchen and sits and waits for his food.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:07 AM
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I am slowly increasing their walks and we are doing more in the house play times. I was just concerned because after I feed them they check each others bowls for more food and seem to keep begging me for more. I suppose I should just ignore it, I was just curious if the grain free diet wasnt as satisfying as some of the other brands I had tried in the past.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JJJose View Post
I am slowly increasing their walks and we are doing more in the house play times. I was just concerned because after I feed them they check each others bowls for more food and seem to keep begging me for more. I suppose I should just ignore it, I was just curious if the grain free diet wasnt as satisfying as some of the other brands I had tried in the past.
Grain free may not be as filling because there is not as much fillers in grain free food as in some others. Dogs don't need those fillers though.
I would go to dog food calculator and check how much they suggest you feed with the calories per cup that is listed on the bag. I have found it is usually more accurate than dog food bags although it varies by dog but it is a good starting point.
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Old 01-18-2013, 01:57 AM
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One of my chihuahuas is a very easy keeper and tends to put on weight quick. You should make sure to check the calories on the food - for example Nature's Variety and Evo are very calorie heavy. For example the NVI chicken is 490 per cup, Evo chicken/turkey is 537 per cup. So that means you have to feed a very small amount. You could try a lower calorie food like for example Nutrisca grain free chicken is 370 per cup, Fromm game bird 409/cup (there's lots more lower calorie foods). You could also cut back on the dry and add canned food which is always lower calorie. Or you could try a food like Honest Kitchen or Grandma Lucy's Pureformance - THK has helped my pup loose weight
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Old 01-18-2013, 02:00 AM
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How much do your dogs weigh? I feed my two grain free kibble also. Just to give you some kind of a reference point, they are both slightly under 4 pounds each. I give them 1/8 cup in the morning, and 1/8 cup in the evening, for a total of 1/4 cup per day.

They, also, are always looking for more. But they are at their ideal weights, and because I'm feeding them a superior food I know their nutritional needs are being met.

Just because your two seem to want more is no reason to give them more. If they need to lose weight, and you've cut back their food, then it stands to reason that they will be having to make an adjustment, and the older they are the harder that is. But most grain free kibble is good quality (store brand and mainstream pet companies don't bother to make grain free foods...too much work) and nutritionally dense, so it's unlikely their food needs aren't being met. Likely they are just in the habit of eating more.

Don't give in. A slightly underweight dog is still far healthier than even a slightly overweight dog.
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Old 01-18-2013, 02:02 AM
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Not sure where you live, but I think the colder weather makes everyone feel hungry as it's our bodies way of trying to build fat to keep us warm.
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