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How much do your senior shelties eat?

Discussion in 'Senior Sheltie Health' started by Fasb's Owner, May 10, 2014.

  1. Fasb's Owner

    Fasb's Owner Forums Enthusiast

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    Jan 21, 2013
    Morgantown, WV
    And did you reduce his portions as he/she got older?

    As I've mentioned in other sub-forums, Fasb is not wanting to eat much doggie chow. This weekend, he's eaten about half the amount of dry he normally eats. Normally, he gets a cup of dry a day, spread out over two feedings. He also gets spoiled with treats, a bit of canned food, etc.

    He weighs 30/31 pounds. Not sure of height/length. Haven't measured him in years. Think he's about 22" from floor to ear tip and 24" from nose to tail. Something like that. When he was younger, he weighted 26-28 lbs. Weight has crept up over the years. He hasn't put on much weight the past couple years.

    Does it sound like I should cut his portion size back? He seems fine other than being hungry, so I wonder if he's simply getting too much food and not very hungry. It seems like he could do with less food, given his weight, but I'm afraid I'll make him go hungry if I cut back any more. 1 cup a day is about half what the labels on the can recommend for his size.
     
  2. Emmasmom

    Emmasmom Premium Member

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    They won't starve. Include any treats into his total day's diet - cut back on treats and table scraps. If you can't, cut back on the amount of kibble.
     
  3. Fasb's Owner

    Fasb's Owner Forums Enthusiast

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    Morgantown, WV
    Fasb ate well this morning. Might be a false alarm. I'm hoping we can get him eating better if we change up his diet to make the food tastier and maybe cut portion size a bit to make him a little hungrier at meal time. I'll talk to our vet. Want to be sure he takes in enough food to not feel too hungry.

    Question: how long should I be giving him to eat. Even when he's not interested and plays with his food, he generally cleans his bowl in 15-20 min at most. Too me that's a lot of time to eat 1/2 cup of kibble, but other people have told me that's pretty reasonable. Don't want to get into a prolonged feeding session. Maybe allow him 30 min to clean his bowl? Is that reasonable?

    Thanks.
     
  4. Emmasmom

    Emmasmom Premium Member

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    I would say 15 minutes and then pull the bowl.
     
  5. Sheltie4

    Sheltie4 Forums Enthusiast

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    Jun 23, 2013
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    My 16 year old Wendell, started skipping his meals a few months ago and lost 2 lbs. in a month.

    I started hand feeding him, but he still got bored with his food. As an old Senior, I certainly did not want him losing weight, and I was concerned.

    I wonder if they start losing their sense of taste as they age?

    Anyway, after trying several different wet foods to entice him, he finally decided to eat Beef/Bison Fresh Pet food, which is a wet food.

    You may have to introduce different foods to entice him, until he decides what is tasteful to him.

    I pull my dog's bowls up after 20 minutes, if they haven't eaten. But my dogs eat fast . . . the only time I end up pulling a bowl is when I bring a new shy foster Sheltie in. Then I try again overnight in their kennel.
     
  6. Caro

    Caro Moderator

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    That's a good call. Humans have a loss of taste and smell for some things as they age, specifically a loss of intensity. So maybe the food really is boring, treats are definitely designed to have a greater intensity of taste.

    Maybe try what Victoria Stillwell recommends for fussy poodles - a tiny sprinkle of garlic salt to increase the smell.

    Mind you. If he does end up eating more he's going to turn into a porker.
     
  7. Fasb's Owner

    Fasb's Owner Forums Enthusiast

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    I've been told by vets that they can start losing their sense of smell as they get older, and that sometimes leads to them losing interest in their food.

    Fasb gobbled his food today (I changed brands). I have a feeling a lot of it is just him not liking his old food as much.
     
  8. Emmasmom

    Emmasmom Premium Member

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    Good to hear - they can get picky.
     
  9. Sandi'sMom

    Sandi'sMom Forums Enthusiast

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    Interesting.. Is that what Victoria recommends? I watched her awhile ago on Animal channel but I might miss this episode. I guess it's meant a real tiny amount as salt is not good for dogs' kidneys.
     
  10. Mom2Melli

    Mom2Melli Forums Enthusiast

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    What about a tiny bit of meat baby food? Very pungent. Works for older cats like a charm.
     

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