(Homemade) Canine Reducing Diet

Hi all, another thread was discussing (ahem) "hefty" Basenji's.... so, I thought I would share this. My Veterinarian gave me a sheet full of various homemade diets - from Hills Pet Products.

the Canine Reducing Diet
1/4lb ground beef (lean)
1/2C cottage cheese
2C canned carrots, drained
2C canned green beans, drained
1 1/2 tsp (7 grams) dicalcium phosphate (or bone meal)

Cook beef in skillet, stirring until lightly browned. Pour off fat and cool. Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Store, covered, in refridgerator.
Yield: 1 3/4lbs

Analysis
Protein: 5.5%
Fat: 1.7%
Carbs: 4.1%
Moisture: 86.4%
Metabolizable Energy: 220K cal/lb

Feeding Guide (for Optimal Body Weight)
10lb: 2/3lb daily
20lb: 1lb daily
40lb: 1 3/4lb daily

Noted
Add a balanced canine supplement.
Snacking and scavenging should be forbidden, however, an occasional tidbit of raw vegetable will add only roughage, vitamins and minerals, not appreciable calories.

@elbrant - Note that carrots have lots of sugar... IMO I would limit carrots and use other veggies as a mix. My Basenji love all root veggies... not limited to just them, they love tomatoes, lettuce, all squash, etc. Mine are not over weight (however that said it is very, very important to keen an eye on their weight... as over weight is not good at all.... limit treats also... for treats be it treats or working rewards, I make my own. I have a dehydrator and make chicken treats myself. I know exactly what is in them

I tend to meal prep for my girl.

  • shredded meat, typically chicken breast or beef, omit seasonings,
  • frozen veggies, thawed it in the refrigerator (rotate types for variety),
  • teaspoon sized dots of pure pumpkin (freeze on a cookie sheet then store in a zipper freezer bag),

I put little of each in a bowl and microwave for 30 seconds, check to make sure it's not too hot (for baby), then serve it to her with a Canine Multivitamin.

She also gets a frozen neckbone (almost daily) to satisfy her chew desires. I get those from my local grocer for ~$1lb, freeze them and give them to her as her treat. The calories vary based on the amount of meat on the bone, but the satisfaction is always over the top. 🙂

A couple of times a month I will give her Oatmeal w/ a touch of milk, or an egg, or a teaspoon of rice.

And I always, always, leave a nibble of my meal on my plate for her. The healthy part of my meal, not the "she shouldn't eat this part".

last edited by elbrant

To slim down a Basenji, just give half rations and bulk it up with veggies - green beans, spinach etc. I wouldn't give carrots or other root vegetables. Mine adore cabbage of all kinds, broccoli, any kind of beans.

The butcher gives me large bones every Friday but I remove all the fat I can and render it down with an onion - constant supply of genuine dripping for us humans. Never need to clean the dogs' teeth.

But the best plan is never to let them get overweight in the first place !

I'm with zande. My Cardi was always a big boy at around 40#, sometimes over that. To keep weight off, I used good quality kibbles as 1/3d of his diet. Of course there were bedtime biscuits and biscuits when going in his cage if we had to go out. So supper was 1/3 of the normal amount of kibbles and the rest made up of veggies. He'd eat anything raw or cooked except celery and fennel. Ergo I could use cup 1C of fresh bagged coleslaw mix on top of his kibbles and he'd chow down. Ditto for any kind of lettuce/greens although I did limit things like spinach and kale. Romaine was always a hit. #10 cans of green beans worked well and once opened, I could freeze them in 1 cup portions. One of the best was canned pumpkin. Again the #10 cans were very reasonable. I could use 1/2 - 1 cup of canned pumpkin with no adverse effects on bowels. Plus the carotene made the red in his coat (a nice sable with lovely white points) get a nice color. I would buy large sweet potatoes, microwave one and then split it three ways between the two of us and the dog. He got the skins too. According to the UK veterinary Summary of Dog Health, 2004, Cardi's live to an average of 12.5 years. Duncan lived to 15 yrs, 7 months. Most of his decline occurred in the latter 3 years so he did very well on his diet. Using the 1/3 kibbles and 2/3 veggies (raw could be pretty fluffy and require a bit more, cooked a bit less) I was able to keep his weight at 39 - 40# (verses his high of 45#). One of the nice things about keeping the diet simple was that when we traveled, I could provide the veggie portion by going to any grocery store. As long as I had his kibbles we were ready to go.

Most of the time you can deal with weight by reducing the amount the dog is getting, no special diet required. I expect with the advent of treat rewarded training some dogs are gaining weight due to a failure to reduce the regular ration to allow for the treats. I used small bits of carrot as rewards, because my Perry enjoyed them. I don't see where carrots are a sugar problem......low glycemic index, especially when fed raw.....but again, most things in small quantities aren't a problem. Your eye should tell you whether your dog is on the gain or losing weight. It's not rocket science, anymore than feeding your kids and yourself is. The diet should match the energy being used, so if the dog is working hard he will need more calories, if he's sedentary (seldom a problem with Basenjis!) he will need less.

As a society we are given to snacking. Not a good idea for our pets, or ourselves. 😉

I agree that it's usually only necessary to reduce your Basenji's amount of food rather than a special diet when he/she is beginning to put on weight. That is if they are on an already balanced diet. During cold months I usually add a little, against during warm months. My vet used to ask "Show weight or normal weight?" !!. Noticing how slim some people keep their Basenjis and especially puppies, in the show ring I agree with him. I allow my old Basenis extra weight to help combat any wasting due to age. In my opinion, it's merely a matter of being aware that they are putting on unnecessary weight.

@patty said in (Homemade) Canine Reducing Diet:

I allow my old Basenis extra weight to help combat any wasting due to age. In my opinion, it's merely a matter of being aware that they are putting on unnecessary weight.

Oh, I sure agree with that! If you have an unexpected problem and the dog goes off his food, it's good to have a bit of a cushion (literally as well as figuratively!) so you have time to sort things out. But it's upsetting to see so many dogs (of many breeds) obese at a young age, and increasingly you do see this often. So hard on their bone structure and just unhealthy for many reasons. That said, I don't like to see a dog really slim either, unless they are "working fit". There is a happy medium that seems to escape a lot of owners.

Basenjis particularly show when they are gaining. At least to my eye.....

last edited by eeeefarm

@patty - When I have a litter I keep the pups on the "plump" side...this would be until about 9 to 12 wks in case there is some illness... however plump is NOT fat.
that said show weight for all the years I have had/raised show/course our Basenji is the same as I would want my pet owners to keep their Basenjis. Keeping them in good weight only helps with their health, no different then humans... IMO. In both show/coursing or any activity, condition is the key, not weight

last edited by tanza

@tanza I agree entirely ! I never minded plump puppies - but they need to achieve correct weight and maintain it through maturity and into old age ! I don't make any distinction between 'show weight' and anything else. A Basenji carrying too much weight is putting unnecessary strain on the organs and it is as harmful to them as to humans, for the same reasons.

I clouded up and rained all over my puppy people who allowed their Basenjis to put on too much weight.

I am still laughing about an incident after I judged in the Czech Republic - after the show I heard one exhibitor tell another 'my dog is not fat ! He is carrying too much weight !' Which is an expression I often use when judging - it conveys the message without offending the handler !

Condition is key - mine run free for miles most days and even my two current oldies are of correct weight and fit as fiddles - they are probably fitter than I am.

last edited by Zande

Looks like your connection to Basenji Forums was lost, please wait while we try to reconnect.