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So if you're reading this post, you must be somewhat interested in the food that goes into your doggy, as am I. I was having some feeding issues with my 11 week old Beagle after getting him home from the Breeder which lasted a few weeks. I finally found a combination that worked for puppy and me.

In the morning, he gets about 2/3 cup Blue Buffalo Chicken & Rice Puppy kibble. He doesn't take on to this stuff with much enthusiasm, but he likes it better than the Purina kibble he came home to us from the breeders house on. Usually I will stuff his Kong full of his "leftovers" and let him work on that during the rest of the day. I work during the day, so he can be crated for a few hours at a time. This seems to occupy some of his time, and he really seems to enjoy the kibble more when he's had to work for it!

Throughout the day he will get treats for training and crate and potty rewards, never does he get a treat just for being cute and furry. We work with multiple treats to keep him interested, differing levels of tastiness for different tasks, tricks, and rewards. Average treat size is about half the size of a pencil eraser.

For dinner, he gets a home-cooked meal... Here's where I really need your guys' insight. I need you guys to tell me if I'm missing anything nutritionally in his cooked meal. We are using ground turkey (about a 90/10 lean mix), diced chicken organs (heart & liver, for minerals and vitamins), brown rice (carbs/puppy energy), and peas & carrots (also minerals and vitamins), We boil it all individually then mix.. Since the mix can get kinda dry after a few days in the fridge, I usually add about a Tblsp of Free-Range Low-Sodium chicken broth to his bowl and microwave for ~20 seconds to bring it back to life. I can get more specific RE: ratios and what-not if it would help, but I am shooting for about 6:3:2 ratio of meat:grains:veggies. He gets about 2/3 cup of this mix, supplemented with a Excel brand puppy multi-vitamin. He wolfs this down, pun intended. Occasionally (like once a week) he will get a small raw egg (pasteurized), shell and all. He finds this good fun, and mighty tasty.

I have been keeping him on the kibble in the AM right now to buffer my sustenance with something a little more concrete. But how does this meal plan look, and what else would you consider, if anything, to add additional nutritional value whilst keeping things fairly simple? Any opinions and advice is greatly appreciated! :cool:
 

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I have been keeping him on the kibble in the AM right now to buffer my sustenance with something a little more concrete. But how does this meal plan look, and what else would you consider, if anything, to add additional nutritional value whilst keeping things fairly simple? Any opinions and advice is greatly appreciated!

There is definitely great forethought into your feeding plan, but if you want my honest opinion ... this menu is going to be the fastest route to a case of panostetis (a.k.a. Pano). It's a common growth related problem, primarily with large breed dogs, but it's more frequent than you'd think in Beagles. Espacially lines that are already prone to rapid growth, as in the case of my foundation bloodline. So unfortunately, I've dealt with it on a few occasions :(

The problems with your menu are both the vitamin supplements and the mixing of two different diets in the A.M. & P.M. If you want to do home cooked, stick with that, but if for some reason you feel you cannot do it properly or it's too costly or time consuming, just go with a kibble the dog does well on. A good puppy growth food should have moderate levels of fat and kcals so as to slow the growth as much as possible. But extra vitamins along with the homecooking and all the supplements that go with that are going to eventually cause the gorwth spurts that lead to Pano. Vitamins & supplements are great for older dogs, but they are the enemy of the puppy!

Overall, when doing a puppy diet, keep it simple! If you don't want to do kibble, I would actually go with raw over homecooked due to the better calcium : Phosphorous ratio in the bonier meaty bones (wings, backs, etc). Or, maybe just add a few pieces of cooked to the kibble to offer variety. But I can tell you from experience, doing a mix of kibble and supplements/home made (raw or homecooked) will lead to problems down the line in this breed.

JMHO :)
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
There is definitely great forethought into your feeding plan, but if you want my honest opinion ... this menu is going to be the fastest route to a case of panostetis (a.k.a. Pano). It's a common growth related problem, primarily with large breed dogs, but it's more frequent than you'd think in Beagles. Espacially lines that are already prone to rapid growth, as in the case of my foundation bloodline. So unfortunately, I've dealt with it on a few occasions :(

The problems with your menu are both the vitamin supplements and the mixing of two different diets in the A.M. & P.M. If you want to do home cooked, stick with that, but if for some reason you feel you cannot do it properly or it's too costly or time consuming, just go with a kibble the dog does well on. A good puppy growth food should have moderate levels of fat and kcals so as to slow the growth as much as possible. But extra vitamins along with the homecooking and all the supplements that go with that are going to eventually cause the gorwth spurts that lead to Pano. Vitamins & supplements are great for older dogs, but they are the enemy of the puppy!

Overall, when doing a puppy diet, keep it simple! If you don't want to do kibble, I would actually go with raw over homecooked due to the better calcium : Phosphorous ratio in the bonier meaty bones (wings, backs, etc). Or, maybe just add a few pieces of cooked to the kibble to offer variety. But I can tell you from experience, doing a mix of kibble and supplements/home made (raw or homecooked) will lead to problems down the line in this breed.

JMHO :)
I really appreciate it.., but the kibble just isn't satisfying either of us! Are you saying that the home-cooked meals are providing more vitamins and minerals than his kibble alone would? Or not enough calories/fat? Or both? I was under the impression that cooking the food pulls some of the vitamins/minerals out of the food, thats why I supplemented (and btw, he gets only a half of a tablet which SAYS it is formulated specifically for puppies). I would gladly consider other calcium additions to his diet, lose the supplement, or switch to a fattier meat if you think that would help (I recently added the hearts to the recipe for the additional fat content), but the thing I like about this meal is that the puppy likes it, a lot! He eats this stuff like I'd like him to eat. Wholesome enjoyable nutrition.

I have done some number crunching before starting this regimen, and here are the results:
• Blue Buffalo kibble = 456kcal/cup. If puppy was consuming only kibble, he would only eat a cup or maybe a little more than that per day, so we'll say ~500-530 kcal/day.
• 2/3 cup kibble =~300 kcal/day (morning meal) and his 2/3 cup turkey/rice =~200-230 kcal/day (evening meal). This adds up to be ~500-530 kcal/day, pretty much the same in the calorie dept. as just kibble alone.
As for puppy-specific nutrition, I do plan on reducing the rice content as he gets older, but not eliminating it entirely (dogs need SOME grains, IMO). The rice subtracted will be substituted with additional meat. After about a year, we will switch to Blue Buffalo Wilderness kibble, which also has less grains than the puppy kibble.

I am going to run my recipes by the vet to get opinions on the meals being given, but I am too addicted to forums to not share and get opinions ahead of time. You being a seasoned beagle owner could provide much insight here, and I am all ears =)

EDIT: a note on the raw diet, I have a one year old toddler at home and don't really like the idea of raw meats in or around the house anywhere within his reach. Baby can munch on a piece of kibble, even though he isn't supposed to, and won't get sick like he would if his curiosity enticed him to throw a raw chicken bone in his mouth!
 

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Put your cooked food into a menu at http://www.nutritiondata.com/ to see what is what. If you use the custom food tool to input your kibble's info and add that to your menu then you should have a really good idea exactly what you are feeding your pup. THEN add vitamins and minerals to a puppy level.

I cook all the ingredients together to save on pot washing. Why not mix the kibble and home cooked stuff together? Sounds much tastier than eating kibble.
 

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Put your cooked food into a menu at http://www.nutritiondata.com/ to see what is what. If you use the custom food tool to input your kibble's info and add that to your menu then you should have a really good idea exactly what you are feeding your pup. THEN add vitamins and minerals to a puppy level.

I cook all the ingredients together to save on pot washing. Why not mix the kibble and home cooked stuff together? Sounds much tastier than eating kibble.
REALLy good ideas, K!! Thanks for the link. I did mix some kibble into his food last night and he scarfed it still, so that might just do the trick!
 

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I really appreciate it.., but the kibble just isn't satisfying either of us! Are you saying that the home-cooked meals are providing more vitamins and minerals than his kibble alone would? Or not enough calories/fat? Or both? I was under the impression that cooking the food pulls some of the vitamins/minerals out of the food, thats why I supplemented (and btw, he gets only a half of a tablet which SAYS it is formulated specifically for puppies). I would gladly consider other calcium additions to his diet, lose the supplement, or switch to a fattier meat if you think that would help (I recently added the hearts to the recipe for the additional fat content), but the thing I like about this meal is that the puppy likes it, a lot! He eats this stuff like I'd like him to eat. Wholesome enjoyable nutrition.

I'm saying the home cooked is actually imbalancing the kibbled diet, and vice versa. You're feeding a high calorie, nutrient dense dry feed with a fat : protein content of 27/16 & a calcium : Phos content of 1.3:1, which is ideal for a pup that young. By adding homecooked you are upping the phosphorous content of the overall diet without tweaking the calcium by much at all. The multivitamin's cal : phos content is only sufficient enough to balance itself out, not to fill in any gaps in the diet. Off the top of my head, I'd guesstimate you were feeding a diet with an average calcium content of 2.5-2.8 but the phosphorous has spiked now to about 2.5-3.0 by adding the meats/vitamins. Too high for growth, and also imbalanced when the phos surplusses the calcium levels in the feed. This is the cause of Panostetis.

I have bred several litters, and in the beginning would supplement my pups with a mix of cooked meats/kibble. Since I also have a bloodline that shoots up like a stalk, that has given me at least 3 pups affected with Pano and another who was never bred but was supplemented w/ loads of vitamins as a pup, had the WORST orthopedic problems until he went on a bland, supplement-less diet. I've known this was diet related but was wondering if it wasn't also a recessive we had that was lurking around, just skipping a generation. I compared notes with other breeders/pet homes that had my pups and found my pups were growing/developing noticably different than those in other homes. I was also not 100% satisfied with kibble only at such an early age so if I do supplement it will be an occasional bony raw cut, usually backs. Even this I keep to a bare minimum until about 7-8 months, which is when I believe the growth plates in my line were starting to close, thus causing the Pano around that time IF I was supplementing cooked/kibble. Again, the cooking was higher in meat, and therefore phosphorous, so that was causing the problem like clockwork. This took em a while to figure out, but I just raised three pups together - two out of the same litter and one two months older. The oldest who was fed a combo of kibble (mostly Wellness, then went to Purina) along with cooked meats and even some raw backs & such, she has the worst case of Pano I have seen in a while :( The other two littermates were fed 99% kibble, only got the rare meal of raw or cooked when I ran out of food. They have grown better than most pups I've raised, tho all 3 were out of the same sire. I'm not saying kibble is better or raw or cooked is better, but stick to one type and balance it as best you can. Active growth is NOT the time for supplementing.


EDIT: a note on the raw diet, I have a one year old toddler at home and don't really like the idea of raw meats in or around the house anywhere within his reach. Baby can munch on a piece of kibble, even though he isn't supposed to, and won't get sick like he would if his curiosity enticed him to throw a raw chicken bone in his mouth!

There IS salmonella and other bacteria in kibble, even in the mouth of the dog, tho if you ask me, there is only beneficial bacteria in canine mouths :) When a dog eats raw, the beneficial bacteria in his mouth that your child comes into contact with every day breaks down that food bacteria. As long as you practice safe cleaning practices as you would your own meat, there should be no threat of cross contamination. Children should NEVER be allowed near a dog when they are eating to have the opportunity to steal kibble or meat ... now, dogs should be taught it's ok to have hands stuck in their food bowls, but I'd always seperate any toddler from a dog who was eating, anyway. Not saying to feed raw, but just some observations I've made over the years. I have never had a problem with bacteria in raw & I do have a pretty bad heart murmur so am succeptable to infections b/c of that ... Again, JMHO.
 

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I'm saying the home cooked is actually imbalancing the kibbled diet, and vice versa. ... Again, JMHO.
You have been extremely informational, but you haven't made any suggestions. You seem fairly biased towards raw feeding. Is this something I should really consider? Or, is it best to put the pup on an all kibble diet? Then transition to raw after a year or two of age?

Please understand, I want whats best for my pup, he doesn't seem too hip on the kibble. I can force it upon him, but it'll lead to 2am hunger cries. Followed by an unsatisfying breakfast, and then laziness, lack of focus, and trembles during the day, and a mediocre dinner at night, and so on and so on.

I'm not sure he'd dig the raw thing at first, but I think after a short while he'd find it good fun, destroying chicken backs.
 

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So if you're reading this post, you must be somewhat interested in the food that goes into your doggy, as am I. I was having some feeding issues with my 11 week old Beagle after getting him home from the Breeder which lasted a few weeks. I finally found a combination that worked for puppy and me.

In the morning, he gets about 2/3 cup Blue Buffalo Chicken & Rice Puppy kibble. He doesn't take on to this stuff with much enthusiasm, but he likes it better than the Purina kibble he came home to us from the breeders house on. Usually I will stuff his Kong full of his "leftovers" and let him work on that during the rest of the day. I work during the day, so he can be crated for a few hours at a time. This seems to occupy some of his time, and he really seems to enjoy the kibble more when he's had to work for it!

Throughout the day he will get treats for training and crate and potty rewards, never does he get a treat just for being cute and furry. We work with multiple treats to keep him interested, differing levels of tastiness for different tasks, tricks, and rewards. Average treat size is about half the size of a pencil eraser.

For dinner, he gets a home-cooked meal... Here's where I really need your guys' insight. I need you guys to tell me if I'm missing anything nutritionally in his cooked meal. We are using ground turkey (about a 90/10 lean mix), diced chicken organs (heart & liver, for minerals and vitamins), brown rice (carbs/puppy energy), and peas & carrots (also minerals and vitamins), We boil it all individually then mix.. Since the mix can get kinda dry after a few days in the fridge, I usually add about a Tblsp of Free-Range Low-Sodium chicken broth to his bowl and microwave for ~20 seconds to bring it back to life. I can get more specific RE: ratios and what-not if it would help, but I am shooting for about 6:3:2 ratio of meat:grains:veggies. He gets about 2/3 cup of this mix, supplemented with a Excel brand puppy multi-vitamin. He wolfs this down, pun intended. Occasionally (like once a week) he will get a small raw egg (pasteurized), shell and all. He finds this good fun, and mighty tasty.

I have been keeping him on the kibble in the AM right now to buffer my sustenance with something a little more concrete. But how does this meal plan look, and what else would you consider, if anything, to add additional nutritional value whilst keeping things fairly simple? Any opinions and advice is greatly appreciated! :cool:

Hello i use "dogs best friend" it is realy good bescause their is a diagram on the back.what food do u use? If you want to get their weight down then just give them a lot of exesise and drop how much food you are giving them like say if they have 3 meals a day put them down to 2 if they have 2 meals a day put them down to a little in the morning and a full meal in the aftenoon.Hope my advise helps.Thx
 

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Hello i use "dogs best friend" it is realy good bescause their is a diagram on the back.what food do u use? If you want to get their weight down then just give them a lot of exesise and drop how much food you are giving them like say if they have 3 meals a day put them down to 2 if they have 2 meals a day put them down to a little in the morning and a full meal in the aftenoon.Hope my advise helps.Thx
would it kill you to read the post first?
 

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Good luck with the diet. This is in regards to the comment you made about giving treats when he potties outside. I would not give treats for pottying. SUre, positive reinforcement with praising and whatnot, but no treats.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Good luck with the diet. This is in regards to the comment you made about giving treats when he potties outside. I would not give treats for pottying. SUre, positive reinforcement with praising and whatnot, but no treats.
a diet doesnt have to be a weight-loss plan, little whippersnapper! The guy is 11 weeks old and still not fully house-trained. If anything, I need him to GAIN weight, steadily, that is...

I give him the treat as further reinforcement of good behavior, I usually give it to him while he is still peeing in his spot so he associates the two well enough. And again, we are talking about a piece of treat half the size of a pencil's eraser maybe 5 times a day, not exactly a lot of extra calories, there...

While your chime in here is appreciated, I think your opinion it is one we could have lived without. I have read many books that suggest a treat to reinforce potty location. But I guess you know better than them, so... :rolleyes:

would it kill you to read the post first?[/QU
]


sorry!!! you dont have to say that do u!!!
OHH, but I DO!! Bold, red, underlined text that says absolutely nothing helpful warrants my sass. :cool:
 

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Ok, I have never feed cooked meals. So I can't tell you whether or not it is balanced. But UrbanBeagles advice on that seems pretty sound to me.

If you are just worried about him not enjoying the kibble as much, why not mix in a balanced can food? At least at this age where balance literally means everything.

Also, if you do want to switch to raw, just feed him in his crate. This will keep the puppy from carrying the food around with him. And the crate is very easy to keep clean.

But I really don't think you should have a problem supplementing your kibble with canned food. It doesn't even necessarily have to be a puppy canned food. All life stages would be fine. Just be sure to check the phosphorus :calcium ratio on the can.
 

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You have been extremely informational, but you haven't made any suggestions. You seem fairly biased towards raw feeding. Is this something I should really consider? Or, is it best to put the pup on an all kibble diet? Then transition to raw after a year or two of age?

LOL, nope, not biased towards raw at all - in fact I raise my pups on mainly Purina :D However, based on personal experience with my own indivigual dogs/pups, *IF* I were going to mix kibble with home prepared foods, it would be raw, ONLY because the bonier bones have a more balanced calcium content for growing pups. Homecooked is a meat mostly type of feeding, and mostly meat is sky high in phosphorous with no calcium to balance it out. I'm also not saying don't feed any homecooked. My suggestion would be to *limit* supplementing to no more than 15-20% of the diet so as not to cause an imbalance during growth. For instance instead of doing one cooked, one kibble meal daily, add in a tablespoon of meat as a kibble topper or do it as a full meal no more than a few times weekly, and ditch all supplements save for a phosphorous free calcium supplement. The diet you're giving would be ideal for an adult dog (Beagles are done growing somewhere around 8-12 months old, with 7 months being high risk for Pano or other nutrition related growth problems such as rickets, etc.) In the end, it's your dog, feed him how you like, just offering suggestions based on what has and has not worked for my own pups.


Please understand, I want whats best for my pup, he doesn't seem too hip on the kibble. I can force it upon him, but it'll lead to 2am hunger cries. Followed by an unsatisfying breakfast, and then laziness, lack of focus, and trembles during the day, and a mediocre dinner at night, and so on and so on.

I never thought you didn't want the best, no one would go to that trouble to creat e diet if they didn't care for the dog!
I also hate to say it but the laziness, lack of focus and trembles are very troublesome behaviors, they do not sound normal at all. In fact the little red warning light is going off in my head & it's screaming *hypoglycemia*. How many meals per day is this pup getting? Two? You might want to break up the portions (while still feeding about the same amount) into 3 daily meals until 4-5 months. OR, consider there is something in the Blue Buffalo that is spiking the blood glucose levels and causing crashes. Very simple way to determine if this is hypoglycemia or not. Give the dog a teaspoon of honey or Nutri Cal during these trembling or laziness episodes - if that perks him up and he seems better for the rest of the day then it was probably a low blood sugar incident. This type of hypo is very, very common in all small breed pups & is usually outgrown.
http://www.gopetsamerica.com/dog-health/hypoglycemia.aspx
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
LOL, nope, not biased towards raw at all - in fact I raise my pups on mainly Purina :D However, based on personal experience with my own indivigual dogs/pups, *IF* I were going to mix kibble with home prepared foods, it would be raw, ONLY because the bonier bones have a more balanced calcium content for growing pups. Homecooked is a meat mostly type of feeding, and mostly meat is sky high in phosphorous with no calcium to balance it out. I'm also not saying don't feed any homecooked. My suggestion would be to *limit* supplementing to no more than 15-20% of the diet so as not to cause an imbalance during growth. For instance instead of doing one cooked, one kibble meal daily, add in a tablespoon of meat as a kibble topper or do it as a full meal no more than a few times weekly, and ditch all supplements save for a phosphorous free calcium supplement. The diet you're giving would be ideal for an adult dog (Beagles are done growing somewhere around 8-12 months old, with 7 months being high risk for Pano or other nutrition related growth problems such as rickets, etc.) In the end, it's your dog, feed him how you like, just offering suggestions based on what has and has not worked for my own pups.





I never thought you didn't want the best, no one would go to that trouble to creat e diet if they didn't care for the dog!
I also hate to say it but the laziness, lack of focus and trembles are very troublesome behaviors, they do not sound normal at all. In fact the little red warning light is going off in my head & it's screaming *hypoglycemia*. How many meals per day is this pup getting? Two? You might want to break up the portions (while still feeding about the same amount) into 3 daily meals until 4-5 months. OR, consider there is something in the Blue Buffalo that is spiking the blood glucose levels and causing crashes. Very simple way to determine if this is hypoglycemia or not. Give the dog a teaspoon of honey or Nutri Cal during these trembling or laziness episodes - if that perks him up and he seems better for the rest of the day then it was probably a low blood sugar incident. This type of hypo is very, very common in all small breed pups & is usually outgrown.
http://www.gopetsamerica.com/dog-health/hypoglycemia.aspx
Thanks for your clarity. I have begun to eliminate the home-cooked feedings. I have 8 pounds of this stuff tho, frozen, and will use it as you advise, small amounts on top of or mixed in with kibble, and only if necessary. I have also begun to save my eggshells, typically 8 to a dozen a week, to grind up and complement the added meat. I estimate he may still get 1/4 cup or so a day of home cooked... at least until I go through this here or begin to ween him off the home-cooked entirely. How many shells should be given? A couple a week?

EDIT: NEVERMIND, I found this chart I attached.

When he was getting the trembles, I would coat my finger with Karo and rub it on his gums, as per some random advice I had read of before, and yea it would help, for a little bit. This hasn't been an issue since cooking the meals for him; I hope it doesn't return.

I am glad to say puppy ate his kibble-only meals yesterday with no complaints, he had 1-1/3 cup total, separated into 2 feedings, plus a kibble-stuffed Mini Kongs worth. I did add about a Tbsp of the Low Sodium, Free-Range Chicken Stock to his dinner kibble to make it a little more enticing for him. I gave him some time to finish it, he ate it all within an hour or so. He was active enough for me all day and never showed signs of shaking or loss of attention. After eating and relaxing for a bit, we got into a training/playing session that went from 9:45pm to 11pm and he still wanted to play, but it was bedtime.. :eek:
 

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