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Pawsible Weekly: The Kibble Konundrum

Ever since the heat set in, the mongrels have been fussing about their food. They don’t like most meat pieces, have specific requirements and the requirements change so fast that I can’t keep up with them.

Especially Elu who has been turning up her nose a lot. The amount she has been doing that has had me worried and I switched to chicken for a bit to ease her appetite. But even chicken she is fussy about. She isn’t eating with gusto.

For this reason and the desire to get the dogs used to more types of food, we tried kibble. Drools Focus seems the reasonable best in the market right, so Focus it was. The first attempt seemed a hit with all except William.

The dogs seemed to like the change in their menu. I’d thought they wouldn’t take to kibble easily after meat but no such thing happened. They pounced up on it, happy about the variety and enjoying the crunch of the pellets.

William the first time we tried kibble did funny things as he ate it. His eyes started to water and he looked dopey for a while after eating. By second day he wasn’t bounding up to eat, had had loose stools and he even threw up. At this point we switched back to meat.

It took a week for systems to settle back down and poop to come back to normal. Then this week I decided to try again. One of the mistakes I made last time was to split the meal into two like I do with meat.

When you switch between types of food, or you introduce a new food/meat, you introduce it slowly and gradually. Instead of doing two meals, I should have done 4 or 5 meals in a day. Small amounts of a new food would be easier on the stomach then a big quantity. That might explain Williams reaction.

Anyway, this time round I went at it slow and did 4 to 5 meals spread through the day. And the dogs seemed to have transitioned better. Tummy’s seemed to have settled, poop is soft but well formed pellets and appetites seem good too.

It’s been a bit more work, feeding six dogs multiple times a day, but the upside is that they and I have had a chance to practice patience. All dogs have had to sit patiently outside the kitchen while one is eating inside. They come one at a time and only when called. They then have to sit and wait for food to be served.

Sounds like a process but when I started out, I was chasing dogs in and out, and doing a lot of other drama too. But doing something 4 times day for one whole week, makes for practice, rhythm, tweaking and good understanding.

It’s amazing to watch Max get better and better each day with his impulse control. Eli is still struggling to figure our the kitchen laxman-rekha but she’s getting better at it. It’s also been fun doing it all with the dogs as the food isn’t messy and icky like meat. 😀

But a week of kibble hasn’t been all good, there are some things that I’m just not content about. Drools Focus doesn’t have corn and hence is the better of the packaged foods in the market. That said, the poop quality though better than other kibble, is still not as good as meat. It’s not hard, compact and only mildly smelly like meat poop, this is poop you’ll remember for a while after cleaning up.

And it’s just the poop that is smelly, even the pee is off. No, it’s not smelly in the stinking sense, but rather smelly in the rich sense. As if it’s filled with nutrients. It’s an overwhelming smell and you can’t escape it. After a week it feels like my whole house smells of kibble pee.

Even the dogs smell different, I think. Over the past couple of days I’ve been feeling the dogs have started to smell kibbley. Dogs should smell I dogs and I’m fine with dog smell but this is body odour.

This week I switch the dogs back to meat and chicken and I’m looking forward to all the smells changing back to before. I wonder how long it will take.

Now that their systems have settled I’m unlikely to ever do kibble for so long here on. I’m going to be switching between kibble, chicken and meats often. Have you done kibble in-between meat cycles? Noticed any of the stuff I was mentioning? What kibble do you feed?

Gawd that was a lot of talk about food, poop and pee. 😛 In other news Max’s ear wax culture reports have come and the Vet suggests a ear canal flushing. One of these days soon we’re going to have to put him under and clean out his ear. I’m hoping the procedure goes off well.

All else is fine on the Pawsible front. See you next week. 🙂

P.S. – Day Seven of the 30 Day Blogging Challenge.

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