Free Feeding
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Thread: Free Feeding

  1. #1
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    DefaultFree Feeding

    Can a dog be freefed if they are self regulating? I am curious to see if I put out 1 days worth of food how he would eat it.

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  3. #2
    Buddy and Bailey is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Free Feeding

    Not sure about Tucker but buddy and bailey would eat it all in one sitting. they say free feeding isn't a good idea as it teaches the dog the food comes from the bowl. When you feed them it teaches them you are the leader and provider.

  4. #3
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    DefaultRe: Free Feeding

    Oh if i did that Coal would eat it all in less than a min and be looking for more at his regular feeding time that night.. hes a chow hound though

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  6. #4
    Trickster's Avatar
    Trickster is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Free Feeding

    I'm assuming you have stuck to a scheduled feeding regime with Tucker? if so, I would not free feed even if he does self regulate and stick with what you are doing now. Why? because...

    a.) He's a puppy. You should still be careful with the amounts you feed him in order to support proper growth.

    b.) Free feeding encourages finicky eating habits.

    c.) Not eating is often one of the first signs of illness. If he is allowed to free feed you will miss this first sign.

    d.) By keeping track of what is going in through scheduled feeding times you are keeping track of what is going out.

  7. #5
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    DefaultRe: Free Feeding

    we have always free fed rascal but she came from our grandma and she did that,

  8. #6
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    DefaultRe: Free Feeding

    Does he normally gobble down all his food each time? If so, I would imagine he would eat the whole bowl. If he doesn't, he may be more of a self regulator (from what I understand is not very common in labs though). Our first lab was free fed, but that came from when she was about 3-4 months old, she started leaving food in her bowl. We never set out to free fed, but it just turned into it based on her eating habits. Eventually we just started filling the bowl when empty, and she would eat it throughout the day (we usually filled it once every day and 1/2). She was probably a little overweight towards the end (probably more from lack of exercise at the time), although no one ever told me that. I just look back at pictures and she looks like she has a little more belly than she should!

    I do not plan on free feeding with Jonah, due to some of the reasons stated by Trickster.

    If Tucker doesn't eat all his food each time, and you are going to try, I wouldn't put the whole days worth in, just in case he does gobble it up, you don't want him to make himself sick!

  9. #7
    Sams Mom's Avatar
    Sams Mom is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Free Feeding

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker
    Can a dog be freefed if they are self regulating? I am curious to see if I put out 1 days worth of food how he would eat it.
    Yes, but probably not a lab. Although my brother's dog would leave her food until she was sure she wasn't getting anything else and she is a lab.

    Poor thing one day her best friend Nicko came over and scarfed her food. My brother didn't notice, so everytime Nicko came over after that Molly quickly polished off her food. Oddly my visits had the same effect and I didn't have a dog and have never eaten her food.

    No point in even trying with Sam. She's a food hound.

  10. #8
    Hunter's Avatar
    Hunter is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Free Feeding

    Both of mine are free fed. Both bowels are next to each other, each morning each get a large cup, most of the time the food is still in the bowel when I get home from work. Around 8p.m. they take turns eating, majority of the time the food is gone, but some times there is a little bit left. Before I go to bed each bowel gets another cup of kibble.

    Never have a problem, both Labs are healthy and not overweight.



  11. #9
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    DefaultRe: Free Feeding

    Yes I believe Tucker is "self-regulating" I won't free feed him. I have always liked the idea that I give him the food. He likes me more than my wife

  12. #10
    Trickster's Avatar
    Trickster is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Free Feeding

    Glad to hear you won't be free feeding!

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