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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
One of my dogs is supposed to be on a low protein (18-20%) diet. This is not for health reasons but in conjunction with his behavior issues.

The issue I'm having is that every low protein food I came across (I went to two stores and went through bag after bag...) is that they're formulated for senior dogs or overweight dogs, and also have lower fat/calories. My dog definitely does -not- need that, and I don't want to be feeding a ton to get his caloric needs met.

I discussed this with the vet and they recommended a science diet product. I'm almost frustrated enough to go with that...but really can't just yet! I was also reminded that we really need to be looking at the total digestive protein value and I absolutely forget how to calculate that, though I knew it at one time.

Does anyone happen to have a food recommendation? I went to a few stores to go through what they had, and I asked a couple others (yay for getting blank stares!). Online searching was more work than flipping bags at the store. Frustration!
 

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Natural Balance Limited Ingredient diets are between 20 and 21% protein. They have 10% fat and are not formulated for senior or overweight dogs, but for all life stages. I don't know how many kcals they have.

Natura makes an organic food called Karma. It also is 20% protein, but is only 8% fat. It has 400 kcals per cup.

I have fed both of these brands and liked the results!
 

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I am really curious, what does the lowered protein have to do with behavior issues?
 

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I am really curious, what does the lowered protein have to do with behavior issues?
I was wondering that same thing. Seems a good, complete diet would be the basis of any medical/ behavioral issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Low protein diets are often recommended for reactive dogs, in conjunction with appropriate behavior modification. There have been a handful of studies on this, not enough to be really solid that it does/will make a difference, but there are times where you do everything you can that might help. Lower protein diets will have lower amounts of amino acids and some of those can contribute to increased aggressive responses.

While my boy isn't aggressive, he's very hyperactive, sensitive to changes in his environment and easily stimulated by everything (...all you puppy owners are nodding along!)... but this is an adult dog with some sort of brain damage (...we could do an MRI to know for sure, but the $1500 wouldn't change our treatment plan so... I'm not inclined to do so!).

Thanks for the suggestions...I'll be off to find stores with those products and see what I can find on calorie content! You've saved me a ton of time! I hope to hear of more lower protein diets.
 

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Interesting-I know with horses certain feeds will make them "hot." When I was given a horse with the farm we bought several years ago, I knew next to nothing about horses. I was told not to feed a certain food (can't remember if it was oats or some other type of grain) unless I was going to give him a LOT of exercise.
 

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thanks for the reply, that was very interesting! I'd never heard that before (which doesn't mean anything).
 

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As you've found in your search, low protein kibbles typically go along with low fat. My best suggestion is the California Natural adult formulas with 21% protein and 11% fat. Then, add extra fat to the kibble by way of salmon oil, coconut oil, or maybe a little peanut butter occasionally.
 
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