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September Ask the Vet

Dr. Moser

Dr. Moser

This month, Dr. Moser answers your questions about helping a Beagle lose weight and switching to a new diet.

Q: Is it okay to switch from Wellness® Super5Mix® Chicken Recipe to Wellness® Super5Mix® Whitefish & Sweet Potato Recipe or does that need to be over a course of 7 days?

A: It is always a good idea to introduce a new diet to a pet slowly- over about a week-gradually decreasing amounts of old food offered, while increasing the new.  Even though many diets look “similar”, they often have different protein and fat content or a different ingredient addition rate, indicated on the label. Conservative feeding management will avoid many unwanted cases of gastrointestinal upset (vomiting and diarrhea).

Wellness® Super5Mix® Chicken Recipe is equivalent in kilocalorie count per cup (about 400 kcal/cup) to the dry Wellness® Super5Mix® Whitefish and Sweet Potato Recipe; so an equal substitution is possible on a volume basis.

A six ounce can of Chicken and Sweet Potato has about 227 kilocalories; a six ounce can of Whitefish and Sweet Potato has about 161 kilocalories; about 30% less because of decreased fat content.


Q: Buddy is our 1 year old pure bred 15 inch beagle. His current weight is 36 pounds. Our vet feels that he needs to lose a couple of pounds. We do exercise him daily and limit treats. Aside from decreasing the amount of food he eats can you tell me about how many calories he will need to lose/maintain a certain weight? Also, can you recommend what food is best to achieve this?

A: Your 36 pound dog needs about 560 kcal per day to satisfy the resting energy requirement (RER);  if he is an active pet we multiply RER x 1.6 to get the maintenance energy requirement ( MER) of 898 kcal per day.  Is this close to what you are currently feeding daily?

To calculate the energy content of the body mass you wish the pet to lose (l pound of fat tissue = 3500 kcal).  Divide this total by the number of days you plan to diet the pet.  Subtract the resulting number of kcal from the animal’s current daily kilocalorie intake and feed the remainder.

Another suggested weight reduction plan would be to feed the pet 60% of the current intake until you reach the desired weight.

A good Wellness dry food choice for weight control in a young active dog is Wellness® Grain Free CORE® Reduced Fat Recipe dry dog food which is about 350 kcal per cup.  It is enhanced in protein and crude fiber to curb hunger, low in fat and very palatable.

5 Responses to “September Ask the Vet”

  1. Frances Conwell says:

    Why is there not a Wellness Simple Solutions blend for cats? I have one cat that suffers from allergies (scratching, licking etc), but would not eat the prescription diet the Vet gave me for his elimination diet. I am interested in a dry food as he refuses to eat any wet food (and believe me I’ve tried everything).
    Thanks.

  2. lynda says:

    What are the calorie requirements (kcal–??)for an 11 year old cat weighing 18 pounds, please?

  3. Ryan says:

    My Beagle also gained weight and I switched her from the Chicken formula to the Wellness Super 5 weight management formula. She lost the necessary weight with normal exercise and switching to the different Wellness food.

  4. Anna Snyder says:

    As I sit here and read the recommendations I wonder why Vets are still recommending dry food, even to aniamls with bladder/kidney issues. After much research and reading material from top holisitic/homepathic vets (Dr. Marty Goldstein for one) it is so obvious that dry food is not the best for animals. The reason being so clear, no moisture for their skin, vital organs. Animals should get the bulk of their moisture from their food. After getting my cat with a hx of stones/crystals, including one surgery, on a wet diet (Wellness and Prowl) and only a small handful of dry 1x/day, it has been almost a year without any issues. Total transformation.

    In my opinion it is time for vets to get up to speed in the nutrition dept. so people like myself and millions of others aren’t left to do it on our own. Yes, Wellness is one of the better foods available but dry food should only be a treat. But then the animals would have less weight issues, skin conditions and bladder problems to bring in millions of dollars. Would a Dr. tell a patient just eat less to lose weight instead of eat more fruits and veggies, less carbs and less fat? Because just eating less will bring weight loss but eating fruits,veggies, et al will not only bring weight loss but better health.

    At least tell consumers that canned (or BARF diet. but we won’t even go there because obviously you would be out of business) should be 80-90% of the diet for optimum health, giving them that knowledge to make a choice. Your customers would respect you and be more loyal than ever. Or get to fore front like The Honest Kitchen and Dr. Harveys. We need more companies like them.
    Thank you for your time,
    Anna Snyder

  5. NANCY PAULEY says:

    do you make a diabetic cat food?