My yellow, Bradley, is 3 y.o. We've had him since he was 7 weeks. He's a rescue Lab and we're thinking he's not purebred, but he looks and acts like a Lab for sure. He doesn't look obese, just maybe a little chubby, probably because he is so tall. I'll try to post top and side pictures later.
Bradley currently weighs 110 lbs. We've been conscientiously keeping him on a diet for well over 6 months now, longer I think. A few months ago we changed his food to Innova EVO, which he has had no problems with. His meals consist of exactly 1 cup of kibble mixed with 1 cup of canned, no-salt green beans twice a day. We were giving him carrots and peas too but I understand they are much higher in sugar so it's just the green beans now. His only treats are 1 or 2 very small Innova EVO snacks each day. He only gets those when he is put in his crate. He also gets maybe 2 or 3 small rawhide rolls a week in the evening. And, aside from the occasional apple or banana slice, baby carrot, or some leftover steak or chicken, that is ALL he gets to eat. Ok, he ate an entire pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving morning, but we won't talk about that :P If he gets leftover meat in his meal we take out some kibble.
A little medical background, he has been on potassium bromide for seizures for the past one year. We soak his meds into about a quarter slice of bread once a day. He was also diagnosed this year with mild hip dysplasia, probably caused by his being overweight, which is what prompted our vet to suggest getting the weight off. He is very stiff all the time and as a result, does not like to pour out too much energy. He plays pretty rough with our other dog but he does not like to run to fetch or play for any length of time, and he does not like the water to swim. He has usally one brisk 20 minute walk a day and a trip around the lake a couple times a week (takes about an hour), and a lot of outdoor play time with our other dog.
We also have him on JointMax Triple Strength soft chews. He gets 5 chews a day, 3 in the morning and 2 at night. This is the breakdown of each chew:
Glucosamine HCl* 1000 mg
Chondroitin Sulfate* 100 mg
MethylSulfonylMethane (MSM)* 600 mg
Creatine Monohydrate 400 mg
Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) 180 mg
Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA) 120 mg
Manganese 12 mg
Vitamin C 50 mg
Vitamin E 50 IU
Grape seed extract 6 mg
Zinc 2 mg
L-Glutathione 2 mg
Alpha Lipoic Acid 200 mcg
Citrus Bioflavonoids 200 mcg
Selenium 2 mcg
Other Ingredients: Marine Lipid Concentrates, Natural meat flavors (non-bovine origin), Bioflavanol, Sucrose, Soybean Oil and Magnesium Stearate.
Size of Dog Daily Dosage
Up to 15 lbs. 1/2 chew
15 to 30 lbs 1 chews
30 to 60 lbs. 2 chews
60 to 100 lbs 4 chews
Over 100 lbs 5 chews
I guess one of my questions would be is this too many chews for him to be on permanently? It seems like a very high dose of G&C. The directions say the dose can be reduced if we see improvement but honestly, it doesn't seem to be helping him at all.
What else can we do to get the weight off? Our vet is fairly confident that once we get some of this weight off that his stiffness and mobility will improve. But we just don't know what else to do. We really can't figure out why he isn't losing any weight. Now Katie, on the other hand, we have to beg that dog to eat every meal. Now there's a dog who's watching her figure...lol.
Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks for reading all of this.
Linda, what's his thyroid like. A lot of dogs who have seizures are often times hypothyroid.
What about the reduced fat Evo?
That's interesting Betsy, about the connection between dogs with seizures and thyroid issues. I did not know that and I wonder why that never occurred to our vet. I am going to call them this week to get him in there and come up with something to help him. He needs his Br levels rechecked anyway before I can get his prescription refilled. I will definitely mention that to her.
I looked into the reduced fat EVO but I was a little concerned about the 52% protein it has. The regular EVO is pretty high with 42%. I always hear folks say protein levels shouldn't be too high. Is that bad or is it just in puppies that the protein shouldn't be too high?
You could try just giving human grade supplements. Those chews have sucrose in them which is SUGAR and if he is getting 5 of them a day.... I don't know, just a thought.
How active is Bradley? I am thinking it's too much for him. Rider get's 1 c. twice a day but he gets a shitload of exercise and training in a day too. He's a trim 88 lbs now. He did get as big as 95 lbs this winter. 88 lbs suits him better though.
So I am thinking that perhaps the EVO is too rich for him.
Dani, Rider & Rookie
SHR Watson's Safari Rider, JH, WC, CL1-R, RA, CGC, TDI
SHR Endeavor Put Me In Coach, RN, WC, CGC
Member Since 6/2003
I agree. I would get his thyroid tested as soon as you can.what's his thyroid like.
I would also think about switching him to an adult maintenance food. EVO is a brilliant food but the high levels of fat (22% for EVO) won't help with weight loss. Comparatively, the average adult maintenance formulas level of fat is around 12% -- quite a difference.
Finally, I would try and increase his daily walks. I would aim for at least a good 45 minutes per day, ideally on a soft (grass/dirt) surface because of his HD.
Thanks for all the suggestions. I'll look around for a different joint supplement. I wasn't even thinking about the sucrose in them so I appreciate that comment.
Dani, he gets average exercise, not abundant. We run him around the yard throwing balls and just playing with him every day, and he does run around and play with Katie quite a bit. He just seems to tire so quickly and bores of the activity. He does like his walks though. I could get my boys to take him on longer walks in the afternoon. But again, he gets tired so quickly. Hopefully once he starts losing a bit of weight that will change.
About the food, I'm confused about the fat to protein ratio. The protein level seems to soar in the reduced fat foods. Is a higher protein level ok for him?
Betsy, thank you for those links. Interesting about the epilepsy and thryoid link. That sounds just like his problem. I will definitely have his thyroid checked. I'm making an appointment for him today. I'll also check around to see if that food is available around here. Is that new? I've never heard of Wellness Core.
Thanks everyone for taking the time
Wellness Core is new. Derby has been on it almost 3 weeks now and is doing very well on it. Funny thing is that when I had tried their fish and sweet potato diet years ago, he did not do well on it all.
Easy fatigue is another sign of hypothyroidism. I think I would get his thyroid checked first before switching foods.