13 week female Lab eating requirements

Discussion in 'Labrador Puppies' started by MABE, Oct 17, 2020.

  1. MABE

    MABE Registered Users

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    HI!

    I am new here, and a proud owner of my first female English chocolate Lab! Her name is Belle!
    Belle is 13 weeks, and weighing in right now at 25lbs, and growing sooo fast! My question is about feeding requirements.
    I do follow the instructions on the bag, have seen the feeding requirements on this site, which is about the same, and I do know about the gene they may have to over eat. Belle gets feed three times a day as she will NOT stop if I leave the food down. I feed three times a day, and do adjust as her weight goes up. Currently she gets a cup and a half of food per day, as stated on the bag for her weight. My issue is that she eats fast, which I get, but then she is literally licking the bottom of her bowl so hard, she pushes it around. She does get some training treats in between, but I do watch how many of those she can have as well. I feel as if she is STARVING, and I am getting a bit worried. She is on Purina Pro Plan for puppies. Her vet is telling me she is at the perfect weight, and to continue what I am doing...but...she breaks my heart when she licks the bottom of an empty bowl. :(
     
  2. 5labs

    5labs Registered Users

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    I'd be more concerned if the pup wasn't finishing quickly and licking the bowl clean.
     
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  3. MABE

    MABE Registered Users

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    Thank you! I knew that was a good thing, but she still is walking by looking for food in between feedings. :(
     
  4. AusNat

    AusNat Registered Users

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    I'm not sure I've ever known a lab that didn't think they were perpetually starving. My 15 week old definitely shares the sentiment. I would start by picking up her food bowl after she finishes - if the bowl isn't there, she won't have anything to check.

    I do think that labs are usually wonderfully suited to feeding out of something other than a standard bowl. I have pre-made things that I purchased like a slow-feeder puzzle bowl, a snuffle mat, a kong wobbler, a sodapup coffee cup and soda can (they're rubber like kongs), and a starmark treat dispenser ball. But I also rotate in "found" things like empty soda bottles, towels with the kibble sprinkled throughout (roll them up for added fun!), egg cartons, empty gift-wrap, paper towel and toilet paper tubes with the ends folded up, paper sacks, amazon boxes full of crumpled paper, an empty baby wipes container.... my guy LOVES figuring out how to manipulate or "break into" the container to get the food out. I always supervise to make sure he isn't eating anything but the food, but that's not a burden because it's so fun to watch him go at it. It stretches out the meal a lot, which better for digestion. It also turns the meal into an enrichment activity. He gets to experience new sounds and textures, think and try out different strategies, indulge his natural instincts to rip and tear, do some scent-work (a lot of the time kibble ends up scattered - we "vacuum" them all up at the end to make sure he gets every piece), and have a sense of accomplishment instead of sadness once the kibble has all been procured. I always praise him for completing his "task" so it feels like an exciting moment.

    I started out feeding him one meal a day like this, and we've slowly migrated away from the traditional bowls all-together. He gets more excited to see me filling a nonstandard container (which is saying something) and is less disappointed when the meal is over. It's turned into a fun activity for both of us - I get to try to think up new experiences for him and watch him enjoy them (and occasionally assist if he looks frustrated). I can tell he enjoys the puzzle/challenge aspect of it because he'll often wait to eat the kibble that's being scattered by his efforts to keep working on the container more.
     

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