The weirdest thing happened lately. I have Lady on a diet at the moment so i changed her morning food from Royal Canin to a small bit of canned tuna with diced veg. In the afternoon i replaced her Royal Canin with boiled chicken and rice.
I did this for a week and her tear staining, which is always there all but disappeared. There was still a small bit at the edge of her eyes but nothing like before. She was on this diet a week before i noticed this happening. but i was afraid to keep her on this diet as i thought she may not be getting a balanced diet and all the nutrients she needs.
Has anyone else had this experience with or without Royal Canin?
Does anyone know the reason for this?
Whats the best thing to do next?
I wouldn't feed tuna regularly -- it has very high mercury levels. Try tinned sardines in brine -- you caan rinse off the brine if you want to cut back on the sodium. I get tns when they are on sale at Tesco or Lidl etc!
Tear staining can kind of come and go. It tends to be worse for about the first year, I have found. I know the breeder Laura Lang feels their eyes may well fit their skulls better as they mature and this helps halt the staining.
I know some people feel diet can help but I don;t think this is the case as long as you are feeding a healthy diet. I feed Royal Canin and have no more or less staining -- indeed if anything the staining has become less of an issue as they have approached age 2.
You can feed a homemade diet but you need to read up on doing this to make sure you get a good balanced diet; what you are feeding now wouldn't be a complete enough diet. There are some links down in the Faqs. I feed mostly a homemade diet supplemented with Royal Canin.
PS How old is Lady again, and why do you have her on a diet?
ok, i just did a really long post and lost it all :x
Lady is 9 months old. I took her to the vet recently and she weighed 7.5kg. he said she needs to lose 1kg so Im trying my best to cut down. Only problem is other people in my house are slipping her scraps when im not looking :? ive told them not to and she say they wont but ive seen her eating bits of meat that I didnt give her and this really annoys me.
how are supposed to monitor her diet if i dont know everything she is eating. :?
Anyway I think maybe if i give her 50g of Royal Canin for her breakfast with a tablespoon of Butchers Tripe and for dinner give her half a breast of chicken and rice.
Would that be ok. What do you think??
You should take the whole family in to the vet and have him/her tell them that she is overweight and that they can't feed her scraps. And go over the health problems of being overweight.
A lot of people don't realize it's a health issue and don't see why others care if a dog has a few extra pounds. It can be very humbling when the vet says your dog is overweight and that you're compromising the dog's health by perpetuating this.
A sortof intervention for the sneak feeders!!!
You could probably do this yourself, but they may not take you seriously. But if you just sat them down and printed out info from online about the consequences of having an overweight dog. Tell them that the dog will not live as long if she's overweight.
Regarding the tear staining -- there could be something in the RC that is causing her to tear. You could try a different food and see if it changes it at all.
That feeding selection sounds quite nice! :)
But given that you know people are slipping scraps, I'd cut way back on the content of each meal (up to half the current content) and add in some low cal roughage -- like grated carrot, frozen thawed green beans or mixed veg (I get those Lidl bags) etc...mine like slices of bell peppers, bits of apple, banana, pear...
Also as Rory says -- the family needs to be there to hear the consequences of overfeeding. I'll get you some links when I get the chance, that will perhaps help scare them into realising you are cutting down her chances of a long and healthy life if she is overweight. Especially in this breed where there is a DIRECT link between overweight and heart problems!!
so you think I should cut down even more?? I thought i was starving her as it is!!!
So 25g of RC, teaspoon of Butchers, 1/4 chicken breast and half the rice
You need to find out what people are feeding her on the side. Explain to the family that this is a very serious issue for this breed -- that IF they are feeding her treats on the side, it MUST be calculated in her daily food. Maybe set up a time of day when she gets a treat and then assign a different family member to have this privilage? And shift those treats to healthy things like carrot slices, pepper slices (not hot pepper but green or red or yellow sweet peppers), and apple slices (no seeds; they are poisonous to dogs), pear slices, a strawberry, things like this are much much better for her. The fat on meat should all be trimmed off and you should be the only one deciding if she gets a meat tidbit. Better to save scraps and offer as part of her meal and avoid meat as treats, where people might be sneaking fatty pieces. You could prepare some healthy treats and keep them in a cup of cold water in the fridge so they are always available and make a healthy choice an easy choice, too.
Edel, the amount to feed really depends on what your vet thinks is correct. Lady is already larger than my 2 year old Jaspar, who is about 7kg. She will probably be a largish cavalier anyway so it is hard to guess what she should be getting but Jaspar gets in total about 130 grms or 3/4ths of a cup of food daily. This might be 2-3 raw chicken necks as the total meal, or a single handful of Royal Canin plus half a tin of sardines, or the RC plus half a finely grated large carrot (I have a kind of file grater which is great for this, or you can use the pulverised remains fo fruit/veg from a juicer), or about 1/2 cup cooked chicken or beef plus the veg, maybe a dessert spoon of cottage cheese or yoghurt, etc. I wouldn't be feeding Lady any more than 1 cup TOTAL of food throughout the day and only veg/fruit treats on top of that. These are very small dogs. Half a chicken breast is a lot of meat. That plus the rice is probably already a full day's meal right there. Try measuring it; maybe you should be giving half that amount.
Exercise will definitely help -- a couple good walks daily.
Have a read through this and also have your family read it! The Roycroft page on feeding is a must -- the link is there on this page:
Also read through the MVD info here -- this is what your cavalier will almost certainly face *anyway* and you don;t want to bring it on any earlier!! Note Pat, who has owned cavaliers for years, says it is very important to keep your cavalier THIN:
Breeder Laura Lang (Roycroft) has noted elsewhere that while her own dogs -- which are bred for heart health -- tend to live til 13-15, most that she places with families as pets live til 11-12, which she links DIRECTLY to the fact that they are overfed. So -- being overweight trims a couple of years off a cavalier's life even if the dog is not prone to early-onset MVD.
I couldn't agree more with what Karlin says. Maxx is overweight at 14.5kg but only by about a kilo at the most (according to my Vet). This in my mind is a kilo too much. I have put him on a diet of James Wellbeloved light and he has a tsp of tuna every evening (with his frusemide mixed in ;) ).
I couldn't understand why he was getting so fat as I rarely give him tidbits (if it falls on the floor and he gets it first during food preparation is usually his max). THEN I found out that his darling Daddy was giving him bits of toast and jam at breakfast and other stuff too.
I took my youngest to the Vets with me and they had a good chat about food and diet etc. My youngest (he's 14) got so upset at the thought of his darling Maxxy being made ill by tidbits that he came home and really went to town on his Dad!!!!
We have now reached a compromise.... Maxx gets his regular food and the only tidbits he gets are a couple of mini carrots (or chunks) a day and maybe sometimes a bit of fruit or raw veg. He also has 1/2 'JWB Snackerjacks' twice a day.
This way, he feels as though he is getting treats and to a cavalier, size makes no difference - it's the fact that they are guzzling that matters the most to them !!!!