Feeding Guidelines - Too high??

Discuss ways to improve the quality of your dog's life and longevity through proper nutrition; a place for all of your questions and answers about feeding your pooch!

Please keep discussions fun, friendly, and helpful at all times. Non-informative posts criticizing a particular brand or another poster’s choice of food are not allowed in this Forum. References to any brand of food as "junk," "garbage," or other harsh names will be removed.

Indiana- Jones

Car?! Did you- say car?!
Barked: Wed Jan 16, '13 5:37am PST 
I feed Wellness canned and dry. Sometimes I combination feed. The pate says 3/4 to 1 1/4 cans per day per 15lb. of body weight. The stew says 3/4 to 1 can per day per 8lbs. of body weight. Indy weighs about 19lbs. I would say he may be 1 to 1.5 lbs over weight due to less activity during winter and probably his age. He's 8 and 1/2 yrs. old. He likes the Wellness, but I really think those amounts are excessive. If I were to feed even the low end of what they recommend, I think it would be too much. According to the feeding guidelines, Indy would get over a can of pate and 2 of the stew per day. He always has dry available. I want to make sure I am not under feeding him. I usually give a healthy 1/4 cup of wet and 1/4 cup of dry when I combination feed. If I just give canned, I will give 1/3 can of pate or 1/2 can of stew per feeding @ 2 times a day.

Dry food says 17-20 lbs. feed 1 1/4 - 1 1/2 cups.

There are so many choices for foods these days which makes you question what you're feeding.

Indy seems to have a sensitive stomach at times. He spits up now and then and sometimes his stomach makes noise. He spends time at my Moms and may get into things the bird drops out of his cage once in a while, but nothing too excessive.

What and how much do you feed your dog?

I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
Barked: Wed Jan 16, '13 7:04am PST 
I never pay attention to feeding guidelines, I put my hands on the dog. If you are feeding a balanced diet then the dog will get what he needs if he is getting enough calories. I want to feel the ribs, hipbones, shoulder points and chest point easily but not see any but the shadow of the last couple of ribs on a short haired dog. Some dogs will have some back bone and/or hip showing when they are at a good weight though. I want to see an hourglass figure looking from above and quite a nice tuck looking from the side. A lean dog has a lot less wear and tear on all the systems which may help when the dog is elderly. Max gained 11 pounds on mis-weighed homecooking and still had a tuck but also had a table back and no hourglass and quite the layer of fat over the shoulders. His fuzz hid my crime very nicely!

Your guy looks quite chunky to me as I don't see that hourglass figure even though he has a bit of a tuck. I would cut back on the feed a bit.

My Max gets gas if he gets more food per day than he needs, possibly your guy gets gas for the same reason. How much of the food from the bowl left out all day does he eat? Might pick that up for starters. Try giving a bedtime snack instead to avert those bile vomits.

This page has the usual chart plus photos of dogs that are obese, fat, ideal weight, underweight and emaciated in the opinion of the writer. Warning, the photos of emaciated dogs are more PG13 than PG!
Scooter,- PAWS

Power of the Paw- for those who- need it
Barked: Wed Jan 16, '13 7:05am PST 
How much does he weigh? You are right in that sometimes it depends on age, level of activity. I have a 8 year old beagle. She runs a little, but she does go on two walks every day....20 minute in the morning, 30-45 min in the evening. Maxwell, how can you tell BOL! I think he looks ok but I can't tell by looking laugh out loud

She gets just under a cup every day. she's 22 lbs. Following the bag instructions isn't always ideal. I had to experiment a little. She also gets a few treats every day, yogurt in her breakfast, a spoonful of can food in her dinner.

sooooo, it just really depends. I don't really like following the instructions on the bag because it really is just a guideline and in the case of my 3 beagles, it's never perfect wink

Edited by author Wed Jan 16, '13 7:19am PST



Which way did- they go?
Barked: Wed Jan 16, '13 8:06am PST 
I feed Tessie Orijen kibble and canned Weruva. She is about 92 lbs right now. She gets 2 cups (1 in the AM, 1 at night) of kibble with 1 can of weruva mixed in at night. She isn't over or underweight. With the better foods they don't need as much as they would with a cheaper more filler type dog food.

Barked: Wed Jan 16, '13 10:29am PST 
It's good to keep in mind that the guidelines on dog food bags and cans are just suggestions. Most bags and cans even say that your individual pet may need more or less depending on age and activity level. I also go by how a dog looks and feels then adjust the amount I feed from there. Too fat? Feed less. Too thin? Feed more.

Edited by author Wed Jan 16, '13 10:33am PST


Barked: Wed Jan 16, '13 1:20pm PST 
I totally ignore feeding guidelines and feed according to what keeps my dogs in good shape. The food the Girls are currently eating suggests 2 1/2 to 3 1/4 cups a day. They get 2 and 1 3/4 cups. If I fed either of them more than that they'd get fat. The food Conker currently eats suggests 1 1/5 to 1 1/2. He gets 1 cup but also eats half raw, and if I were to take out the raw food it would be 2 cups or more. So, it can go both ways, but is usually too much.
Indiana- Jones

Car?! Did you- say car?!
Barked: Wed Jan 16, '13 7:37pm PST 
The pictures of Indy on the site are old. He has always had the hourglass shape from above. Still does for the most part. I see the weight in his belly area where his stomach doesn't look tucked up as much. I have never really been concerned with his weight until recently. After my husband and I separated in May of 2012, his eating changed. I assume from depression. Once he started eating regular again (about a month or so after), his weight began to fluctuate a little more. I also am starting to see his age. I think he hurts himself easier now and has times where he appears to have a sore or tender leg. He recently had been limping on his front right leg for about a week. He jumps a lot and plays hard, but I feel as though his bones may be less forgiving at times. Being that it's winter, he has less interest in staying out for a longer walk. He prefers to stay inside when the weather is cold. I have to keep the treadmill down for him. He actually likes going on that. But I have to watch him to make sure nothing happens.

Indy weighs about 19lbs. He is at my Moms most days during the week and he is tired when he comes home, so he usually just lounges and sleeps. Indy loves carrots and other vegatables and his Wellness treats. I have Booda and Blue Buffalo bones that he may get once a week. Once in a while he will get a few bites of whatever meat I might be eating (steak, chicken). No junk food.

You consider the canned food a treat? I just wonder if I should cut back on the canned and give him more dry and use the canned just so he finishes it rather then trying to include it as half his diet.

Wellness is supposed to be a good quality food. I guess that's what I need to consider as well. Like you said, less is fine with higher quality.

Lily & Conker,
Yes….when I read the suggested amounts and calculate the amount for his weight, I have never fed that much.

Thanks for all the replies


Happiest when- running, or- cuddling
Barked: Thu Jan 17, '13 6:34pm PST 
Hi Indiana,

You are right to be concerned about feeding guidelines. Basically they are forced to take a 'one size fits all' approach to feeding directions, i.e. all 40 lb dogs are to be fed the same. The reality is that many things affect your dogs metabolism and hence caloric needs. As has been mentioned activity level is one, however sex is another. Males need more calories than females of the same weight. Neuter status also affects metabolism. Spayed or neutered dogs require less calories than intact dogs. Older dogs require less calories than younger dogs.
Generally food bag labels overfeed dogs.
The best thing is to look at your dog. As has been mentioned, feeling the ribs is important. Also, they should have a waist when viewed from the top and an abdominal tuck when viewed from the side. An abdominal tuck means that starting at the sternum, the dog's abdomen should be higher than its sternum. With overweight dogs it is a straight line or worse, sags down.

Can I get a- belly rub?
Barked: Thu Jan 17, '13 9:05pm PST 
I never follow them either. My Indy is about 23-24 lbs and he eats 1 cup a day split into 2 meals. He also has a sensitive stomach, allergies and issues with anal glands.
There are couple foods he does well on: holistic select grain free and natures variety instinct, so I rotate between the 2.

Edited by author Thu Jan 17, '13 9:06pm PST

Scooter,- PAWS

Power of the Paw- for those who- need it
Barked: Fri Jan 18, '13 4:52am PST 
Indy weighs about 19lbs. He is at my Moms most days during the week and he is tired when he comes home, so he usually just lounges and sleeps. Indy loves carrots and other vegatables and his Wellness treats. I have Booda and Blue Buffalo bones that he may get once a week. Once in a while he will get a few bites of whatever meat I might be eating (steak, chicken). No junk food.

Ok...so he's about 3 lbs less than me. Mine get a heaping spoonful of wellness can with her wellness dry food. I'm not familiar with the can food guidelines because I only do a spoonful. I'm assuming he's tired because he gets more excercise with your mom? To be honest, I think it's best to overfeed (not a ton of course BOL) and then adjust accordingly. For example, when I was giving Scooter a half cup each feeding instead of just under a a half a cup, I noticed she got a bit pudgy. So I changed it to just under a half a cup and finally got her at a nice steady weight of 22 (she was at 23/24 for a while).

So she gets her spoonful of yogurt with her dry food, a spoonful of can food with her dry food, a few treats (3 or 4) a day, and a small bull stick or tendon at night.

so I personally think that the guideline of 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 is too much, but if you take away all dog treats, and don't add anything, it's probably close to being right. . Hope that makes sense. way to go

Edited by author Fri Jan 18, '13 4:53am PST