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    Thread: Protein Needs

    1. #1
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      Protein Needs

      Was wondering what the protein needs are for my lab. He's my assistance dog. They place where I got him said not to feed their dogs a high protein diet because they're not athletes, etc. I read online that dogs need 1 gram of protein per pound. That would mean Chuck needs 75 grams of protein a day. Does that sound right? Thanks for any feedback!

    2. #2
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      What are you feeling your dog? Raw, homecooked, kibble?

      If its kibble, I feel the average adult Labrador needs a food with a 26% to 30% protein level. Ive never heard needing 75 grams of protein per day, not sure what that's about, maybe someone else can answer that

      Im sure raw and homecooked is much different, the meals have to be carefully planned to ensure that dog is getting the appropriate nutrition, I have no advice regarding that, I don't feed raw or 100% homecooked.

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    4. #3
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      Quote Originally Posted by ZoeysMommy View Post
      What are you feeling your dog? Raw, homecooked, kibble?

      If its kibble, I feel the average adult Labrador needs a food with a 26% to 30% protein level. Ive never heard needing 75 grams of protein per day, not sure what that's about, maybe someone else can answer that

      Im sure raw and homecooked is much different, the meals have to be carefully planned to ensure that dog is getting the appropriate nutrition, I have no advice regarding that, I don't feed raw or 100% homecooked.
      I have been feeding him a rotation diet of mainly grain free kibble with about 30-40% protein. If I feed him a kibble with grains, it seems that I have to feed him more to get the nutrition, but then he gains weight. He gets about 900 calories a day (vet recommended). His goal weight is between 75-78, which is where he is now.

      I read an article (more having to do with weight loss) and there is a formula to calculate how much protein is in a dog food and if it's enough for any particular dog. https://www.aahanet.org/PublicDocume...Guidelines.pdf

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      Sounds like what you're feeding is working, so stay with it....there is NOTHING wrong with feeding a grain-free food in the range of protein you're stating.

      Some dogs DO easily gain weight on a food with grains & seems like you have to feed more too because not all dogs can digest grains - in which case, they're either stored as fat or the dog is extra hungry because he can't utilize all of his food.

      What you're doing is working & there is nothing wrong with the diet plan you're following.

      I fed 2 older slightly more then couch potato little dogs higher protein diets then what the average person would feed; IMHO it kept better muscle mass, kept them healthier and they had more energy when they did need/use it.

      Dogs utilize fats first, followed by proteins; but good quality proteins are needed for overall health, retaining muscle mass, age prevention as well as maintaining health in joints/ligaments.

      Keep with what you're doing. There is no *exact* fits this or that for every dog out of the same litter, same breed....every dog is different. If you're dog feels his best on what you're feeding, feed it!

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    7. #5
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      Our two Akitas (male and female) developed nocturnal incontinence because the food we were feeding them contained too high a protein level (resulted in protein in the urine). The food we were using was NOT a high protein food....about 26% if I recall correctly...that was in the late 80's and my memory stretches only so far. We switched protein sources and started feeding in the 23 - 24% range. The dogs did fine and never peed in their sleep again.

      My dogs weren't athletes...got walks, played with each other in the backyard....weren't interested in fetching, so.... Good walks kept them from being total couch potatoes. They didn't need/couldn't use extra protein.
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      Food is protein, fat and carbohydrates and it adds to 100%, to make this point simple.

      If you feed lower protein and consequently lower fat, the carbohydrate level rises. Carbohydrate energy is stored as fat and Labs as a breed are probably the most obese in the Dog Kingdom.

      Labs do best on higher protein, higher fat foods so long as the amount is restricted. This way they get a low levels of carbs.

      The 1 gram of protein method works well. If you use a 30% protein food then the average Lab should get 2.25 - 2.50 cups per day which is good.

      If you step up to a 35% - 40% protein food, then you can dial it back to a little less than 2 cups, which is even better.

      Using a 25% protein food means you have to feed about 3 cups and give the dog a big belly full of calories from carbohydrates, like 150 grams per day, compared to 50 grams on the high protein option.

    10. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to LabMunsterBracco For This Useful Post:

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    11. #7
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      Thanks LabMunster, that's what I was looking for and have read, but there's a lot out there that is conflicting.

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    13. #8
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      Quote Originally Posted by Chuckles View Post
      Thanks LabMunster, that's what I was looking for and have read, but there's a lot out there that is conflicting.
      I am not sure where there is conflicting data. An upper level on protein has never been placed, only a minimum, and no such minimum has ever been put on carbohydrates because they are not a required nutrient.

      I feed a 37% protein food and wouldn't dream of changing. Just adjust the amount you feed and you will be much better in the long run.

    14. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to LabMunsterBracco For This Useful Post:

      Chuckles (04-17-2015), FourLabsAndATri-Pawd (04-23-2015), ronmcq (04-23-2015), Woofie (04-17-2015)

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      LabMunsterBracco - Thanks so much for that post. Protein levels have concerned me as well - yours is the best explanation I have read as I did my research~!

    16. #10
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      Quote Originally Posted by LabMunsterBracco View Post
      Food is protein, fat and carbohydrates and it adds to 100%, to make this point simple.

      If you feed lower protein and consequently lower fat, the carbohydrate level rises. Carbohydrate energy is stored as fat and Labs as a breed are probably the most obese in the Dog Kingdom.

      Labs do best on higher protein, higher fat foods so long as the amount is restricted. This way they get a low levels of carbs.

      The 1 gram of protein method works well. If you use a 30% protein food then the average Lab should get 2.25 - 2.50 cups per day which is good.

      If you step up to a 35% - 40% protein food, then you can dial it back to a little less than 2 cups, which is even better.

      Using a 25% protein food means you have to feed about 3 cups and give the dog a big belly full of calories from carbohydrates, like 150 grams per day, compared to 50 grams on the high protein option.
      What is average? Are we talking weight? Activity level? Age? Gender? Neutered? Sorry, perhaps I'm more dense than most but knowing would help me out more.

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      Tanya (04-24-2015)

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