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Hello everyone! I'm mostly here for advice on redoing my dog's diet. He's a 10 year old beagle/basset hound mix, and he's very overweight which is bad for his health. My mom insisted on buying him cheap grocery store foods for nearly his whole life, minus a few months here and there where I did manage to convince her to buy healthier brands. He's 48 pounds for the record!

Right now he's on the healthy weight Beneful dry food, and we mix that with half of a can of Alpo wet. Ugh, it pains me to know how much filler crap he's getting and it pains me to see his health going, and I know food can make a huge difference in a pet's life. My mom thinks I'm being paranoid but she refuses to look at any of the research I show her and it really makes me angry.

I'm unsure how to word this nicer, but he poops constantly and most of it is very runny, so I'm assuming most of the nutrients are passing right through him. His paws have developed swollen, red rashes on them which irritate him, so he bites them which irritate them more. He sheds constantly (yet somehow still has a coat full of hair, but I brush him everyday and I should not be brushing 5+ brushfuls of hair on a short haired dog daily!).

I definitely plan to call the vet ASAP to come up with some kind of diet plan because I have no idea which amounts to feed him for healthy weight loss and how much to run him due to his joint issues. We do give him supplements for his joints, but I don't want to overdue it and make his joints worse.

I'm thinking of switching him over to Blue Buffalo Wilderness for Seniors and mix that with some Freshpet slices or Wellness 95% grain-free mixer.

He will not eat dry food by itself, he never has even as a puppy, but I've noticed that wet foods contain a higher amount of fat which I'm sure he does not need.

If anyone has any advice for revamping an old dog's diet, please do let me know. My dog is incredibly special to me and means the world to me and I refuse to lose him to something as preventable and treatable as a poor diet!

Thank you for your time.
 

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High protein, low carb is best. For cats, all canned food is best for weight loss, but I don't know if that's the best for dogs or if it's financially an option for you, since he isn't cat sized! I've heard that Wellness CORE Reduced Fat is the best kibble for weight loss. Senior foods are usually higher in carbs, but Wilderness might be OK. Start with the weight-loss suggestion on the bag (reducing accordingly to account for the mix-ins), then cut back as needed if he doesn't lose any weight. Weekly weigh-ins will help you gauge how much to feed him.

I think you'll see a pretty good improvement just getting him off the Beneful!
 

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Huh. I didn't know about canned foods being good for weight-loss, but I've also never owned a cat. I'm reading articles about weight loss for dogs on DogFoodAdvisor.com and it seems that I want more protein and less carbs, and senior dog foods seem to have more carbs in them.

Weight loss is so complicated, and I definitely will get my vet's input before I do anything drastic like increasing exercise amounts reducing food intakes beyond what the bag suggests.

But I do agree that getting him off of Beneful would be a great first step to improving his health. I'll look into the Wellness brand as well. :)
 

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Huh. I didn't know about canned foods being good for weight-loss, but I've also never owned a cat. I'm reading articles about weight loss for dogs on DogFoodAdvisor.com and it seems that I want more protein and less carbs, and senior dog foods seem to have more carbs in them.

Weight loss is so complicated, and I definitely will get my vet's input before I do anything drastic like increasing exercise amounts reducing food intakes beyond what the bag suggests.

But I do agree that getting him off of Beneful would be a great first step to improving his health. I'll look into the Wellness brand as well. :)
What brands can you get?
 

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You can substitute canned green beans for 1/4 of his regular food. Helps him feel full, without the calories.
 

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What brands can you get?
I can pretty much get whatever Petsmart carries. I know they carry brands like Blue Buffalo, Freshpet, Wellness, and Castor & Pollux. I can also order food from online if I need to as long as shipping is fast and isn't outrageously expensive.
 

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I'm honestly unsure what's the most I can pay for dog food as I still need to discuss options with my mother.

Maybe about $50-$60 per month or two? I want to do some price checks and nutrition checks on various brands before I go up to her and say "we need to spend x amount of money on dog food per month."

I know the 4.5 pound bag of food we get will last like 2 months or so, and we get two meals out of a regular sized can. We also give him generous helpings which we definitely need to and will stop once I learn proper quantities to give him.
 

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Would you be interested or open to trying raw? You could easily do it for $50 or less per month. He'd be able to drop his weight pretty quickly and healthily.
 

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I'd definitely be willing to learn about raw feeding as I know very little about it. I know my aunt raw feeds her birds and they are extremely healthy and eat a variety of foods so they don't get tired of eating the same thing.

I know the thing with my dog is he gets tired of eating the same foods over and over again. Even when we give him a new flavor of wet, he gets tired of it. So maybe raw feeding would be a good option as I believe it allows for a wide variety.
 

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I rehabilitated my MIL's 7 year old cockapoo, Rosie, then eventually rehomed her when MIL had to go into assisted living. I used Wellness Core Reduced Fat kibble. It ranks very high on www.dogfoodanalysis.com. and is grain free. Just remember to feed the amount for what the dog SHOULD weigh (get your vet's recommendation on the desired weight, which is what I did), NOT what he weighs now. Cut out high calorie/high glycemic index treats (dog biscuits, etc.), and substitute baby carrots or no salt green beans (a couple of heaping TBSP shouldn't cause a bloat problem - some dogs like the frozen ones; I used canned). Small apple pieces (not a whole apple!) are good too. At first, the dog may refuse the healthy snacks, but hunger works miracles! My MIL's dog wouldn't even eat the kibble I offered at first (she was used to unlimited fresh cooked chicken and unlimited Milk Bones), but gave in after 3 days of refusing to eat anything. She was then happy to eat WHATEVER I put in front of her from then on - lol! Ignore the pitiful and stink eye looks you'll get - and you'll get them, trust me... Play with the dog instead, or go for a walk. Walks may have to be short at first (Rosie panted just existing when I first took her in - she was pitiful!),

Rosie went from a very obese 28.2 lb. to an appropriate 14.5 pounds (vet recommended 14-15 pounds for her, but said she doubted Rosie would ever reach that weight - ha!) in 6 months, which is as fast as you'd want a dog to lose weight. Losing too fast isn't healthy.

Here are before and after photos of her. I don't have a good after picture, but you get the idea.

 

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I am one who used Wellness Core's reduced fat with great success. Beside your dog being overweight, he's older and this is a great food for him as seniors need a higher protein food. Feed him the amount of food for the weight he SHOULD be, not the weight he is. It's a very good food and it will take some time but the weight will come off. Do whatever exercise he can do.
 

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I'd definitely be willing to learn about raw feeding as I know very little about it. I know my aunt raw feeds her birds and they are extremely healthy and eat a variety of foods so they don't get tired of eating the same thing.

I know the thing with my dog is he gets tired of eating the same foods over and over again. Even when we give him a new flavor of wet, he gets tired of it. So maybe raw feeding would be a good option as I believe it allows for a wide variety.
It's practically transformed Duke, plus with your boy being older he would probably feel a lot better ad he'd be eating what he needs as a senior. It definitely allows for as much variety as you can find. I promise you he won't get bored of it. Duke whines when I don't go fast enough and before he wouldn't even eat all his food.

Where are you located? Would you be willing to do whole pieces? Or are you more comfortable with a grind?
 

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My dog is in the same boat... I have a 12 year old am staff. He is 69 lbs and should be in the 50 lb area. I have him on Iams senior. My mother won't listen to me and will mix in alpo wet food. What should I switch him to. He is accustomed to tasty food...
 

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I adopted a rather chubby 6.5 year old 10lb Dachshund. it took about 8 months, but I got off all his extra weight... he now weighs 7.5 lbs :) I dont feed a specific food to any of my dogs, I feed a variety of brands (Acana, Orijen, ToTW, Blue Buffalo Wilderness, Chicken Soup, Addiction, Merrick, Fromm, The Honest Kitchen, Canisource, Horizon Legacy and Amicus), types (Raw, Dehydrated, Canned, Kibble, Table Scraps) and flavours (chicken, beef, pork, duck, bison, venison, turkey, goose, rabbit). but I kept Boo to the higher fiber foods, and raw bony meals (chicken backs, drumsticks, necks etc), and fed him 1/3 of his meal pureed veggies, 2/3 would be dog food (of some sort).

As for canned foods, I feed Merrick (there are sooooo many different flavours :) ), Addiction, Tripette, and Blue's Stew.
 

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Hello Keagon! It's always great to see someone trying to help their pet get to a healthier weight. :)

Blue Buffalo is a great way to go. However, since weight loss is our goal, you might consider using Wilderness for Adults since it has a lower carbohydrate count and supplementing him with vitamins for seniors instead. If giving him vitamins will be a problem, then he should be fine on the Wilderness for Seniors.

Since he won't eat dry by itself, I assume you mean that you are mixing his dry and wet food together, yes? That's perfectly fine to do if he eats it all right away, but if you leave it out for him to snack on later, that could be the reason for his runny poop! *nods*

It's perfectly fine if his diet has a higher amount of fat in it. Dogs are carnivores (or carnivourous omnivores, depending on who you talk to), so they don't process lipids the same way our bodies do. More fat doesn't mean he'll get fatter, it just means there are less carbs and more protein and fat in the food. Which is good! :)

The biggest thing will be to cut down on the amount of food he is eating as well. If right now his bowl gets filled up all the way, cut it down to 5/6ths of a bowl. Weigh him in a couple weeks, and if he's lost some weight, then hold him at 5/6ths until he stops losing, then cut down to 3/4ths and so on.

P.s. - Don't rely on the back of the bag. Most of the time feeding those amounts is what makes you end up with a fat dog! lol
 

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My dog is in the same boat... I have a 12 year old am staff. He is 69 lbs and should be in the 50 lb area. I have him on Iams senior. My mother won't listen to me and will mix in alpo wet food. What should I switch him to. He is accustomed to tasty food...
oh please take him off of both foods. They're awful. You do not need a senior food. Since your dog is overweight by 19lbs, please look at Wellness Core's reduced fat food. It helped my obese sheltie lose almost half of her weight. Do whatever exercise your dog can handle. Get off the Iams and the Alpo.
 

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I agree with others, senior foods are not necessary and are often counter productive since they are loaded with carbs and seniors, especially if overweight need a food high in animal protein to maintain healthy muscle mass and lose weight. I've had good results with wellness core reduced fat after my dog put on few lbs when I left him in my parents care for few weeks. Although once the dog loses the weight, I would put him on a maintenance grain free food around 28-34% protein

Heres a pic of Uno before and after on wellness core reduced fat





Also, you would probably have similar results with BB wilderness either senior or healthy weight formulas since they are both 30% protein and 10% fat and comparable to wellness core RF
 
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