Confused about what to feed my puppy!

Teddy is a lively, some would say bordering on hyper-active (!!) 9 month old Golden Retriever. He was weened onto Royal Canine and as a complete newbie to the dog world, I have kept him on this. Teddy is not a great eater and will alternate between being ravenous to having little interest in food (although he can always manage his treats!!!)

However Teddy does seem to have quite a sensitive digestive system and he is prone to soft stools, which means he has problems constantly with his glands. He is also always eating soil and grass. I am quite overwhelmed with the choice and advice as some people have said I should give him low protein others say the opposite.

Any advice or tips would be very much appreciated.

Thank you !!

Hello and welcome to the forum. There has been lots of debate about high protein and it how may influence behaviour and possibly contribute towards hyperactivity. Personally. I am inclined to think that. like many things, this will depend on the individual dog. I have found that higher or lower protein doesn’t seem to make much difference for my dog. Unfortunately finding a food to suit individual dogs is often lots of trial and error.

Dottie has added this thread which is very informative in terms of digestive issues.

It seems that the current food isn’t suiting and I am inclined to think that eating soil may be due to something lacking in his diet. My dog did it for a while then stopped with a diet change.

Thank you so much for your reply and your comments. It is good to know that it might be a case of trial and error … will get on the case! Will have a look at Dottie’s thread. Thanks again

Hello Dawn. It is always useful to start at the beginning so let’s have a look at Royal Canin. They have a large range of products and you do not mention which of these you are currently feeding so I cannot bring up the actual review from the Dog Food Directory. I am therefore going to look at Royal Canin Maxi Junior. If you look at the list of ingredients you will see a lot that are marked in red. Click on each one and you will find out why. If you look very closely you will see that you don’t really know what is going into your dog because some of the ingredients are so obscure. That is lesson one in choosing a good pet food - the ingredient list should be crystal clear. There is a thread here about the principles of selecting a good dog food which might be helpful.

From what you say, your dog senses that this food is not suiting him and that is why his appetite is irregular. This, and the fact that he has soft stools point to the fact that there is something in the RC that he is intolerant of so you need to find a better food for him. RC contains maize which is a common source of problems in the gut so look for a product without it. This doesn’t mean that you necessarily have to go grain free because there are plenty of products that have some cereal but no maize but it would narrow down the choice if you ticked grain free in the filters list of the Dog Food Directory.

Do you want to feed dry, raw or wet food? Narrow down the choice in the filters list by selecting one of them. Next, move the rating slider scale 4 to 5 and this will bring up the better products. Most of them won’t contain any red ingredients but you can also tick ‘no red ingredients’ in the filters list as this will reduce the list again. For now, it would be better to look for a simple recipe so choose a single source of protein. After that, it is a case of looking at the results and seeing which one takes your fancy and also suits your budget.

Remember to make the transition gradually and be sure to weigh the food accurately. Overfeeding can cause diarrhoea. Be aware that better quality foods sometimes need to be given in lower quantities so start at the bottom end of the recommended daily allowance and move up gradually, as required.

When you have chosen, come back to us and let us know please.

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Hi Dawn
I have a sensitive red setter, he is now 3, and have had to change his food quite a lot , as I found out that most foods did not suit his sensitive tummy.
He is also very thin and I found out that dried foods did not suit him , loose stools etc, I also found that foods with more carbohydrates made him very hyper. I thought that giving him a food with more meat would make him hyper, but he is active but not hyper.
I was running out of options and decided to give raw a try, although I was not happy to use this at first. I rang up Luna and me which is a raw food company, which make patties which are very easy to use, and asked lots of questions and then was happy to give it a go.
Copper is now on raw food , and it is the best thing I have done. He is now putting on a bit more weight, and his condition is very good.
His stools are much better and he is always up for eating. This food may not suit your dog but it may be worth a try.
Your dog is also at the hormonal age and this may be making him a bit more manic than usual.
My dog was on Royal canin when we first got him but I was not happy to keep him on this, as there was to many red ingredients.
If you do want to try raw, (It is not for every one) then it is best to ring up the company of your choice.
I have replied to your post to let you know that you are not alone. I hope that you can sort out his food. :slight_smile: