My dogs will NOT eat just dry food. I have Blue Buffalo in an auto feeder that I change out every few days for fresh and no go. They will occasionally go and get a nibble every once in a while, but not enough to sustain. I feed a mix of dry/wet 2 times per day, very early morning and around 8 pm. I don't have any overweight dogs, but I've heard that wet should only be fed as a treat. Any thoughts?
***Edited By: admin on 7/10/2012 7:26:37 PM*** Reason: test
I mix a spoonful of wet with a cup or so of dry. I have always heard that a diet of all wet can lead to teeth problems unless your dog chews on alot of hard treats or bone. I have always fed dry food, and having a herding breed(don't know if that matters)they have always loved to chew bones, and rawhides. I have never had any teeth problems, even my 10yr old mini poodle has only had 2 teeth removed, and they were broken not decayed.
I use petz life several times a week on each of my dogs, so I don't know if that has made a difference. My 13yr old aussie never had a dental problem, or a dental done her whole life. I lost her a couple of years ago, her hips went out horribly.
I don't know if that is much help, but that is what I feed.
My rule for each toy poodle is a tablespoon of wet to about a half cup of dry 2 times a day. No teeth problems exist, but I do brush my dogs teeth, not every day, but at least once a week. They have tons of Dentley's rawhides, they like Goodlife biscuits with fruit, & lots of pig ears. So, good on the munchies. Usually I only feed the wet food mix 1 time per day, but with the puppies around twice seems good.
Adding wet food to my dogs dry was a pain in the tookus. Once in a blue moon I may still buy a can of Merricks and mix it in as a treat but they get fed dry only on a daily basis. Given your feeding routine it is no wonder they dont eat from the self feeder. You are feeding them plenty for their size twice daily as it is. They don't need the extra provided by the self feeder.
I have never free fed my girls. They get fed twice a day, the same amount, so I know EXACTLY how much they are eating. I have also never given them cans-not even as a treat. The vet said their teeth, so far, are perfect. They do get a chew almost every evening, and treats in-between. (And I ONLY buy rawhides that are made in the USA.)
If I were you, I would cut their food intake to 1/2 to 3/4 a cup per day. I would ease off the treats totally, until they are eating their dry food. Personally, I add a tiny bit of slightly warmed hamburger to all my dogs meals, and they inhale it (I feed Orijen). Don't worry about them going hungry...they are holding out for the wet food and the treats, lol! Good luck with them.
Catlover: Where do you find rawhides that are only made in the USA ? I have looked in every petstore from here to timbuktu and everything is made oversease, whether it's from china or Brazil or Thailand.
I have always fed my animals free choice. Not just the ones I have now but all my others as well. When they are babies they get scheduled meals but when they are adults they get free fed. I have never run into issues doing it this way. I actually find it much easier and less wasteful. When I fed them at regular times I found I was throwing away more food than they were eating. This way, when I put the food in their dishes they can either eat it all at once or if they are not hungry they can eat it when they are. With this particular group I have no problems with them eating each others food all up and none being left for anyone when they want it. From my own experiences I have never understood the aversion to feeding this way.
I can't free feed the raw but I choose not to free feed their kibble.
I think I'm OCD but I have such a variety of weights that I want each one to get their portion exactly. I also add a powdered natural/herbal multivitamin to each bowl of kibble so I have to ensure that each one gets their correct dose.
One of the handlers I started working with said that scheduled feedings were better for lots of reasons (half of which I can't remember) but I do remember she said it was better on the digestive system. Something about anticipation and excitement is good for temperment.
I don't think there's a "right" vs. "wrong" way to feed; it's really just what works best for individual pets and owners.
If you need help, ask God; if you don't, thank God.
I think i-pets is cheaper, but it probably depends on the actual weight of the rawhide itself. I get the 10-12 retriever 2nds, 10 lbs for 22.00. then it is only 6.00 for shipping. My dogs love them. I have also paid the full price for things like the doughnuts. They go very fast around here lol.
Thanks Catlover and Illusion for the links. My guys love rawhides but I havent bought any for them in years because I can never find any that are made here in the US. I don't mind paying a little more for them since they will last awhile. There is next to nothing on the market that will give them more than 15 minutes of chewing time except the soup bones from the supermarket.
My dogs have Dentley's rawhides. I must admit that the brands that you guys have suggested must not exist here because I have never seen them. I mostly feed Blue Buffalo because of the all organic factor and no fillers. Prior to that they were on Royal Canin or Eukanuba. My Caesar CANNOT eat anything with beef, he seems sensitive to it and has a projectile back end. BTW, I'm going to start a separate thread about Pet Meds, hope for some insight on that as well.
My guys love pig ears but Max gets vomiting and diarrhea from them. The pork must be too fatty for his system. Since I can't give something to one that I cant give to all the others no one gets them now. Is there some special way your butcher dries them that makes them last so long? A pigs ear in this house lasts slightly longer than a dog cookie lol. Maybe its because 3 out of the 4 are ginormous dogs and thats why nothing seems to last very long with them.
The only thing that literally lasts forever around here are the butcher bones. My house looks like a bone yard but I hate throwing them away because they always go back to chew on them and they will literally dig through the bone basket to pick out just the perfect one to chew. I'd hate to throw out their favorite one so they all sit in one big basket. I could probably reassemble a couple cows with all the ones I have lying around lol.