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I always give mine food first thing in a morning before a shoot/trial, although less on a trial day as I dont want them stopping for a ****. It just sits better with me knowing they have a few hours to digest it before they start work.

 

However, the key thing in my eyes is all year round fitness. I am training my dogs every day of the year, hill retrieves, water retrieves, working tests, summer trials etc which keeps there fitness up. A lot of the dogs that turn up on the shoot on the first day of the season look like they've been sat on the sofa with a takeaway and 4 cans every night since the last season.

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A lot of the dogs that turn up on the shoot on the first day of the season look like they've been sat on the sofa with a takeaway and 4 cans every night since the last season.

 

My dogs are fit but I look a bit like that at the start of the season :lol:

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Someone once told me feeding a dog before working can give them a twisted stomach

Load of ********!

 

Twisted stomach (gastric dillatation with volvulus) can happen in large deep chested dogs after a huge meal (think flatcoat stealing Christmas turkey) but is practically unheard of in spaniels and labradors.

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Someone once told me feeding a dog before working can give them a twisted stomach

A light snack is fine, but not a full meal which can cause stomach torsion or bloat. Small snacks at intervals won,t cause it.

 

The KC has actually commissioned some research on bloat in setters. I had a survey on feeding and exercise for mine last year from them.

Edited by loriusgarrulus
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when i was busy pickingup and shooting a while ago ...i was out either picking up or shooting 2-3 times a week...i ran 6 dogs in the kennel 3 sprokers and 3 labs...never used to work a set 2 days running........i would feed a high protien for during the season and in the off season i would drop the %age to 11 or 12%....during the season it would go up to 26%..........

 

the dogs working that day would be fed a hot soaked mash at 5.30 in the morning......i would have my cuppa and get dressed make my sarnies and coffee.....let the dogs out for a poo and sniff and off we would go........guns on pegs at 9.........at lunch i would give them a smaller feed of soaked mash ...and they would settle down for 40 mins then work thro till 3.30-4.00..........

 

back home they wold be checked over pads-paws-ears........then fed high protien mash...hot....the infra red lights would go on and they would stretch out for 2 hours without being disturbed

 

 

i used to see other dogs being fed bar supplements and mars bars etc.....but i preffered to feed them something that was slow release...to keep them topped up

 

 

i still have 2 dogs from those days which pigeon shoot with me and hunt the hedges for the odd bit of game........the sprocker is 15years and the lab is 13years....

 

 

the other thing to bear in mind is to "pace" the dog...only let them off WHEN THERE IS SOMETHING TO FIND OR PICK.......it is pointless to have a dog running about cause it looks good....it just burns up energy.........

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I feel it's also worth mentioning that some of the foods suggested for dogs are poisonous, chocolate (particularly dark) tomatoes (particularly green), as well as garlic, onion, many types of nuts. IMHO it's best to stick to standard dog foods little and often being the key which can also be used as a reward, as feeding "any old thing" to your four legged partner can quickly lead to a trip to the vets.

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Chocolate is not poisonous. Theobromine and caffeine in chocolate are toxic if too much given. A small amount of white or milk chocolate is perfectly safe. It's far better than withholding it when the dogs blood sugar is very low could be a bad thing. I'm not suggesting giving the dog a whole bar of Dairy Milk as a treat.

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*sigh* it's a dose thing.

 

Put some figures in here:

 

http://www.sarc.com.au/chocolate-toxicity-calculator/

 

My cocker weighs 12kg. A 50g bar of white or milk chocolate would be perfectly safe, dark chocolate may upset her stomach.

 

Something coated in chocolate should be perfectly safe to all. Just make sure there are no raisins in there as their toxicity is unpredictable and not dose dependant.

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*sigh* it's a dose thing.

 

Put some figures in here:

 

http://www.sarc.com.au/chocolate-toxicity-calculator/

 

My cocker weighs 12kg. A 50g bar of white or milk chocolate would be perfectly safe, dark chocolate may upset her stomach.

 

Something coated in chocolate should be perfectly safe to all. Just make sure there are no raisins in there as their toxicity is unpredictable and not dose dependant.

Very interesting. Thanks for that.

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Someone else told me about this when we were having a chat the other day. Think I will get some, I have never had the problem with my dogs but prevention is better than a cure.

+1 I had a cocker that suffered the same. I worked him in a team of three in heavy mountain cover for woodcock. It was a challenge for any dog, and a collapse was always possible if you pushed him too hard. He was a great dog and the answer was simple. Energy source through the day to keep his tanked filled. I also rotated them.

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All this talk of collapse being due to low blood sugar. If LBS is the cause, is it not simply easier to carry some sugar in a small bag and feed little and often? Why all the fancy and expensive nutritional bars of this and that?

Sugar only gives a quick burst of energy and is quickly used up , its good for emergency treatment. It is good for an animal that has collapsed with low sugar to get it on its feet initially. To get a sustained long lasting energy release you need something more. Carbohydrate gives a slow release of energy so will last the dog longer.

Proteins and fats will work eventually but take much longer to digest and release their energy.

You don't need anything expensive or fancy. Give the dog the edge of your sandwich or a few bits of dog biscuit or a bit of pie crust when you have yours.

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  • 3 weeks later...

My tuppence worth..... This works for me.

 

I give my cocker a larger meal the night before and no food before the shoot..... On shoot day at lunch time he gets 2 x potato scones out of the packet and two or three small to med size chunks of chicken or beef whatever is handy really. I do this as it is a pain relying on expensive specialist bars etc. I do not believe they are really needed.

 

Have had my fair share of specialist nutritional bars for human consumption over the years and as one might expect nothing beats real food. The issue with sugar as already stated in previous posts is that it is fast acting so one spike and it is done so essentially does not last long, also not the best for the dogs teeth, this of course assumes that dogs process sugar the same way as humans do (I don't know if they do). Sugar is a carbohydrate and is a fast acting simple carb, most carbs have a value on the glycemic index so all burn at different rates, complex carbs like rice and potatoes burn a bit faster than oats which burn ultra slow and so on.......

 

Also just like humans different dogs will probably burn calories at different rates too so lots of variables lol

Cheers

Andra

Edited by Andra
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Was out Sat & a duck dropped in the river which was only 12ft wide but running fast. There had been snow & the wind was cold. Sent my spaniel over for it. He picked it & climbed onto the far bank instead of returning. He stood there looking at us & no amount of calling would get him back. He really didnt want to return, a lad waded across to help him back. After 10 mins I left him with another lad to find a duck but I was shouted back that he had lay down & wouldnt get up. I quickly went for the jeep then drove down to the river to get him. He wasn't right so put him in the footwell with the heaters blasting for an hour, gave him some chocolate & a sandwich which he wolfed down. He perked up a bit but I left him in the motor while we flighted the ducks, choosing to look for the birds using a torch rather than the dog. Got him home, he jumped out wagging his tail as usual. Gave him some hot food & he seemed fine. Checked on him the following morning & he was ok. He's been wormed as he'd lost a little weight but I'd also changed his feed recently. I'm looking at buying a neoprene vest for my spaniel, does anyone use them? I'm wondering if it was low sugar levels, hypothermia, diet change or a combination?

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Was out Sat & a duck dropped in the river which was only 12ft wide but running fast. There had been snow & the wind was cold. Sent my spaniel over for it. He picked it & climbed onto the far bank instead of returning. He stood there looking at us & no amount of calling would get him back. He really didnt want to return, a lad waded across to help him back. After 10 mins I left him with another lad to find a duck but I was shouted back that he had lay down & wouldnt get up. I quickly went for the jeep then drove down to the river to get him. He wasn't right so put him in the footwell with the heaters blasting for an hour, gave him some chocolate & a sandwich which he wolfed down. He perked up a bit but I left him in the motor while we flighted the ducks, choosing to look for the birds using a torch rather than the dog. Got him home, he jumped out wagging his tail as usual. Gave him some hot food & he seemed fine. Checked on him the following morning & he was ok. He's been wormed as he'd lost a little weight but I'd also changed his feed recently. I'm looking at buying a neoprene vest for my spaniel, does anyone use them? I'm wondering if it was low sugar levels, hypothermia, diet change or a combination?

Re the vest I am going to buy one of the Jack Pyke neoprene ones over the holiday period and planning to head over to the shop to try so I get the right size for my wee fella....

Edited by Andra
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