Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Poor Goldendoodle Parenting

As new parents, Jeff and I are bound to mess up at some point.  Well, we did on  Day Number Two big time.  When Milton arrived to Dallas, the breeder left us with the puppy food (Kirkland Signature Super Premium Puppy Chicken, Rice, & Vegetable Formula) that Milton had been introduced to for the past few weeks after weaning off his mother's milk.  She gave us two very small baggies of this high quality food that unfortunately is only available at Costco.  Since we just renewed our Sam's Club membership, Costco did not seem to be a viable choice for us.  We quickly began to run out of Milton's puppy food, so silly us we decided  to mix Purina Puppy Chow from Wal-Mart with his original food.  Vets, dog literature, and friends will warn you that you need to make a gradual dog food switch because puppies' tummies are very tender.  We stupidly went all out and mixed the old food with the new at a 50/50 ratio. 

Non-skid bowls so nothing gets pushed around

Later that day, poor Milton was terribly lethargic.  He was completely unexcited to play with us, only wanted to sleep for hours, and on our jaunts outdoors he would take one or two steps and then listlessly plop to the ground.  On returning inside, Milton vomited up the entire contents of his stomach onto our carpet.  It was actually only three neat, little piles, but still our carpet has had a total beat down since he arrived.  Outside his little bowel movements were pure liquid brown cascades.  On my tearful phone call to the veterinary emergency hot line, the veterinarian confirmed for me that the food switch was most likely what caused the gastrointestinal issues.  She informed me that the switch needs to be much more gradual beginning at a 25:75 ratio.  As I broke down on the phone and chastised myself as a stupid mother, Jeff and I were quite nervous that we killed our new, little goldendoodle.

Sometimes I try to entice Milton by making a food trail on the floor.

Other times he needs a little help.

Thankfully, our good friends, Alan and Alicia, loyal Costco members, came to a gallant rescue.  They rushed out and graciously bought us two big bags of Milton's routine food, only $15/bag, that very same day.  Jeff drove 1-hour round trip to their house to pick it up all for his new little son.  Milton is only 8-weeks old, but already he has a lot of wonderful people looking out for him. 

To make a long, unpleasant story short, Milton is on the mend.  He only vomited one more time and things are "hardening" up slowly but surely.  He is beginning to heartily eat again on a regular basis and is drinking more water which will help with any dehydration. 

I have learned that what puppy food brand you choose is extremely important.  Every day your puppy is greatly developing, so it is imperative to feed him the best food, so no progress is hindered.  The Costco Kirkland brand, that our breeder loves, has higher fat, bite-size pieces, and a crunch that keeps teeth clean.  Always read the ingredients on the dog food bag - grains, like corn or wheat, should not be the first ingredient listed, but rather a meat or vegetable.  Oftentimes these grains are substituted in as cheap fillers.  Our food's first ingredient is chicken and chicken meal; it is a bit fancy too containing cranberries and even rosemary extract!  It is better to pay a little extra for good dog food, than get socked with a high vet bill later on because you cheaped out.  Only the best for our goldendoodle from now on.

A little tip we read is to mix a tablespoon of pumpkin (pure canned pumpkin pie filling with no spices) in with his food once a day.  This works to quell indigestion and keep things regular.  A can of pumpkin can be a lot to use up, so you can always make muffins with the additional (comment if you want me to send you a tasty, healthy recipe) or freeze the excess in ice cube trays to pop out for later use. 

Just like Thanksgiving

We are feeding Milton 1/2 cup 3x daily because he is a growing boy.  We use a kitchen measuring cup to get it just right, so we are not under or over feeding him.  With potty training, we don't leave his water and food out all day, so that he is not constantly eating and needing to relieve himself.  We are making certain to clean his bowls nightly or whenever they look grimy, so no harmful bacteria creeps in.
Thankfully, our new dog, Milton, is still puttering along. He actually has a lot of bounce in his step which leads to more lively walks filled with lots of sniffing and a bit of unpleasant chewing around the house.  We almost miss the sleepy Milton.  All in all, this was only a minor catastrophe although the poor boy's Saturday night welcome party was canceled, but if the Goldendoodle of Honor is sick you really don't have much of a choice.

Happy boy


  1. glad he's feeling better! and $15/bag is really affordable. if you consider how much you spend on yourself per month on food, $15 for a bag that lasts about a month for a dog is a drop in the bucket.

  2. I completely agree. I wish it was that easy for us, although Milton's food lacks the wide variety humans eat!

  3. I'm so glad he's feeling better! I kinda chuckled when I read the part where you guys thought you killed your new puppy--which couldn't possibly be true =) Gotta love Costco! -Shiela

    1. He's pottie trained by now. Thank goodness! You always did love your Costco, Shiela!

  4. Chocolate Cupcakes per WW (1 point)

    1 box of Devil’s Food Cake Mix (Pillsbury with pudding)
    1 can of pumpkin
    1 cup of water

    Mix together and spoon mix into cupcake pan.
    Cook as directed per cake mix box.
    (check the cupcakes after 15 minutes; if your toothpick comes clean, they’re done)

    Suggestion – Use one sugar-free vanilla pudding cup as icing. (1 additional point)

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