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    1. #1
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      Food Rollercoaster ride

      I think I'm driving myself crazy trying to find the perfect food for Tucker. I'm so scared that I may make the same mistake that I did with my previous lab (at least I know I didn't educate myself with the proper food 12 years ago). My previous lab had many joint issues at such a young age of 1.5years.

      So Tucker is now 14 weeks and on IAMS Large Breed puppy food. Doing well and good weight gain per "VET". Vet said this found is fine and this is also the breeders choice.

      I am leaning toward the ProPlan Focus because I hear so many breeders use this and had very good results. I have been looking at some of the more expensive foods like the Wellness Supermix, Orijen, etc. but the bottom line is I want what is best for Tucker and it may not be the high end food. I also don't understand the big difference of opinion in many owners on large breed vs medium breed. I don't want Tucker to grow lanky and not proportion to his size. If you experience owners can help me one last time on food choice and why, I would appreciate it.

    2. #2
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      Joint issues at a young age are primarily due to hereditary conditions, not environmental conditions. While food may play a part of it, I highly doubt it was the primary cause of your previous lab's problems.

      Many breeders feed Pro Plan Focus Puppy. We do not want lanky pups and we don't get lanky pups. Pro Plan is always my first choice when you don't have food issues to deal with.
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      kwillia (07-09-2014)

    4. #3
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      but not PP Focus Large Breed, why? What is the difference?

      Thanks for you help!

    5. #4
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      Large breed puppy is basically adult food with low fat. I want the pups to have a bit more protein/fat, so I go with either puppy which is typically around 28/18 or I use PP Sport which is 30/20. I don't really go below 16% fat ever, so based on that LB wouldn't be an option.

    6. #5
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      Thanks. I currently feed twice a day. 1 cup in am and 1 cup in pm. With a gradual switch should I feed the same amount?

    7. #6
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      Iams is similar enough to Pro Plan, I would probably do about 50/50 for about a week and then just go for the switch. A 14 week old should be eating closer to 3 cups a day though. Also a 3rd meal might be nice for a pup if you have a way to do lunch.

    8. #7
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      Why change if the breeder has had success w/ Iams? I personally have fed Euk LBP for years here, and a field friend changed from PPP to it a few years ago and is thrilled w/ better, more even growth. I dunno, but if your breeder has success w/ it, and has the OFA database to back up the soundness, etc., I'd not think change is warranted. There IS data (plenty of it) showing there is a significant environmental influence on joint development, btw. Growth rates (often calcium and calorie related), exercise, early spay / neutering, etc, all influence it. Hip dysplasia has been labeled for yearrs as only moderately heritable.

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      Maxx&Emma (07-09-2014)

    10. #8
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      Thanks for you input. The breeder does like IAMS and has kept some of his dogs on the IAMS adult food. He has had 3 litters that I know of and I was looking for more input from years of experience from a breeder. I can tell you my last lab was lanky had arthritis at a very early age. elbow and hip problems. That breeder had never had any issues with his dogs. (12 years ago). I believe I did contribute to his problems because he did get a little over weight as a pup and I was feeding him kibble and bits per vet. He also was neutured at 6 mos (not sure if that is something I need to think about too)

      Back to Tucker, I want to get the right portions in him. IAM Large Breed Puppy are formulated with 0.8 to 0.9% calcium and 0.7% phosphorus . Is this sufficient?

      Everywhere I read, pups should have around 1.2%, Iams also at 26/14% for protein/fat. I'm thinking the fat should be closer to 16%. Everyones input is greatly appreciated. I can't believe I'm so indecisive about this.

    11. #9
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      I don't know anything about the food you are feeding so I won't comment on it. I do believe it is best to keep puppy on the food of breeders choice and discuss any changes with them first.

      Environmental joint issues are a very real problem and one not to be taken lightly. Do not allow your puppy to jump on and off furniture, bed, etc. Be very careful of "forced" exercise on hard surfaces, never jog with a puppy less than 18 months of age. Teach your puppy to do steps slowly once he us too large to carry up and down. Use common sense when playing fetch, etc. And allow your puppy to completely grow before neutering, 18 months or so is a good age but do your research and don't let any vet to bully you.

      Good luck, I really hope this time you are free of any orthopedic issues with your puppy. Of course you can't be guaranteed that anything will protect a puppy from all the evils, heriditary or environmental, in this world but there is a lot you can do to give your puppy the best chance at a healthy life.
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    12. #10
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      Quote Originally Posted by kwillia View Post
      Thanks. I currently feed twice a day. 1 cup in am and 1 cup in pm. With a gradual switch should I feed the same amount?
      Wow, 2 cups per day is not enough food for a 14 week old puppy. My puppies at that age are getting about 3-3 cups per day.

      Labs are NOT a large breed dog. LB foods are a gimmick. As stated elsewhere, .65% calcium in the Iams LB puppy is not enough calcium, IMHO.

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      Maxx&Emma (07-09-2014)

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