Is your Basenji a Chow hound and what food are you feeding

I know there are a lot of different views on this forum in regard to food choice and of course whether to free feed or not. We would like to know what you do and how you feel about free feeding vs controlled feeding. We feel there are pros and cons to both.

Currently we free feeding Roo, and keeping of written record of how much food we are going through to attempt to get an avg of what eats. He does not look overweight and gets plenty of execise. While he is usually always up for a treat it does not appear that he really goes for the food dish unless he is really hungry. We are feeding both Roo and Bonzo EVO Red Meat Large Bites.

Jason and Miranda

I do not free feed for several reasons. One big reason is that by feeding at set feeding times, if my dogs do not eat, I know right away. Since often the first sign of illness is refusing to eat, this is an important thing for me to be able to catch quickly. Having set feeding times also makes housebreaking easier for puppies and in general makes it easier for the dog to have a potty routine. The other reason, I do not free feed is because by having set feeding times, I can adjust their food each day according to how much training we are doing that day or their activity level. The final reason, I don't free feed is that food is such a huge reward/reinforcer that I want the dog to associate that reinforcer with me and I want to use feedings as an opportunity to reinforce good behavior. That is why hand feeding can be such a powerful tool in ones tool box for relationship building with your dog. Set feeding times are more practical than hand feeding each meal but still requires dog/human interaction. Free feeding takes out that interaction.

We do sort of a combo.

We used to free feed a lower quality food; it was what Fiji was eating when we got her and we never switched. She didn't have that much interest in it, and seemed to eat enough but not too much. Then after a couple of months, she developed allergy problems and we took her to a boiled chicken and rice direct for about a week. She was much more interested in that and would clean the bowl at feeding time, so we just fed twice a day.

Now, we've introduced a high quality dry food. Twice a day we do measured amounts of that and some rice or oatmeal, a little chicken or boiled egg. Those are "meals". In between, we keep a little kibble down. She tends to ignore it but if we've done more walking than usual she may eat a bit of it between meals or later, after dinner.

We're getting a 2nd B soon, so we may need to switch that up, but so far it's working.

Oh, and we're using Merricks BG kibble, Buffalo.

ditto to everything lvoss said - excellent post!

Right now Eli gets fed twice a day. I don't free feed because I like to keep an eye on exactly what what he eats and how much. I agree that not eating is one of the first signs to watch for if a dog isn't feeling right. Since my big boys are fed raw there's no free feeding option there.

Same with me… I do not free feed for the same reasons that lvoss posted along with having multi dogs, there are bound to be food fights... and you never know how much each is getting. But the biggest reason is as lvoss stated... you know immediately if they are not feeling well, if their eating habit chances... Also I only give them "X" amount of time to eat... either you eat it, or it gets taken away until the next feeding (I do feed 2x a day for adults and puppies under 5/6 months depending on their need, more often)

We feed on a relative schedule, no free-feeding here.
Our dogs are fed between 7 and 8 AM, and again around 5-6 PM.

All three of our dogs are pretty near their ideal weight {Jazz is 21 lbs, Keoki is 25, Gypsy {non-B} is 55}.

Jazzy gets 1/2 cup twice a day
Keoki gets 3/4 cup twice a day.

I add 1200 gms fish oil to their breakfast.

Once a week in the morning they get half their kibble with canned food mixed in. Occasionally in the evening I add a bit of pumpkin or egg, broccoli, green beans, etc. But typically, it's kibble.

I agree with Ivoss on all points.
Mirtillo gets three meals a day in his crate and one meal during our walks/training.

Controlled feeding in their crates here as well…for every reason lvoss & Tanza said and I'd add...controlled feeding also adds to consistent pee & poop and consistent times when that happens and so if the kids have a problem with "output" I know that right away as well.

I feed Orijen 6 Fresh Fish, 2x per day. The kids LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it...their skin is great and coats are amazing...soft and shiny and with the fish oil already in the food, I no longer use the Grizzly Salmon Oil because it isn't necessary. They've never once skipped a meal or eaten slowly with the Orijen. In fact, Ruby eats so fast that I sat outside her crate a couple of times and watched her to make sure she chews it.

For chews and treats they get a variety of bully sticks, tendons, duck or salmon strips, biscuits and marrow or knuckle bones. Oh, and they definitely will work for cheese!

We have done both free-feeding and not, and I think both us and the dogs prefer a controlled schedule. I feed them at 8:30 in the morning, Liz feeds them at 8:30 in the evening, give or take 10-15 minutes. I think they like having the order and they know, especially Zip, that now it won't be down for the whole day. She's the much slower eater. Right now we feed Zip outside on the patio and bring Riley in. We doll his kibble out to him in about 5-6 bits so he doesn't eat too fast. They both get Innova kibble, a little under a full cup for Zip right now and 1.5 cups/day for Riley. Zip also gets a tsp of either innova or evo canned, we change it up. I've been meaning to ask if it's a good idea to alternate her canned food. It is a pretty small component of her meals.

I don't free feed Dallas for all the same reasons listed. Plus, free feeding with several different dogs in the house is just too much. You never know really who is eating what!

Tosca is my only dog, but we don't free feed either, if I did I think Tosca would eat herself to death, lol! (I always wondered about what would happen actually if I tried it…but I am not going to:)
I just feed her whenever I wake up (7 on weekdays, 9-10 weekends) and then later again around supper time. She does well with this, and I love seeing her scamper to the closet where we keep her food. All I have to say is "are you hungry?" and she goes running over, doing her happy dance, its really adorable 🙂

Basenji Mix

Duke and Daisy eat twice a day - 3/4 Cup each in the morning after they come in from outside potty. Then 1/2 - 3/4 Cup evenings - btwn 6:30 & 7:30 - depends when we are finished with our dinner. If we have leftover veggies, meat/gravey - I'll mix some of that in their kibble. Sometimes I open a can of Merricks wet and mix a heeping tablespoon on the kibble. It's a big treat - they're so spoiled…

Duke = 25 lbs and Daisy = 30 lbs Their weight seems stable, if I feel they are putting on weight, I cut back a little on the food. Now that it's summer, they get more exercise.

I feed them dry Canidae's All Life Stages, dry Blue Buffalo's Salmon or dry Merricks Wilderness Blend. I think all 3 types of dry are healthy foods. And I like them to have variety. Of course I only buy one large bag at a time.

Oh - I forgot to mention - they are not free fed. Both are chow hounds - and for the same reason lvoss - if one doesn't eat, then I'll know which one isn't feeling good and keep and eye on him/her. Funny about those two - they have a way to let me know when it's time to eat. They rally me into the kitchen where I keep their food and bowls - when I have gotten busy doing something else. But they pretty much let me know they want to eat…

Well…I free-feed, but because of my work schedule, and therefore, Jack's crating schedule, he gets fed on a regular schedule. I fee him in the morning, around 7:30am, and he usually gobbles that down, then I feed him when I get home, and leave food out for him all evening. Because I do have a normal schedule with him, I can see when he is eating, and when he isn't. Lately, he has taken to eating his food while we are eating dinner (which is great!) he brings a few bites to the dining room, drops them on the floor, and lets out a huge sigh and eats them. I know what he is saying "Boy, I sure wish I had what you're having...."

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