Performance and Exercise Nutrition

Performance and exercise based canine nutrition is our emphasis. We have the ability to free run our dogs for prescribed distances on our large acreage. Possible trials available with a focus on exercise include performance, activity intensity, weight loss, protein turnover, inflammation, mobility, gait, and so forth.

Available on-site equipment for performance evaluation includes a dual energy x-ray absorptiometry machine (DXA) for measuring body composition, Actical accelerometer and GPS collars for measuring activity and distance, Gait4Dogs pressure walkway for gait analysis, and much more. 

We also have dogs that are trained for duck retrieving and odor detection to be able to mimic those activities in the research setting. 


Calorimetry Four Rivers Kennel has an Oxymax open circuit indirect calorimetry machine, and chamber system to evaluate oxygen and energy metabolism in a variety of different types of trials.


Stool Quality One of the biggest concerns among pet owners is the quality of their dogs stool. At Four Rivers Kennel our highly trained staff use a scoring scale and special protocols to evaluate stool quality during trials. We are also able to test fecal pH and run fecal biomarkers on-site.


Digestibility We offer digestibility trials using a modified indicator method which falls within AAFCO recommendations. Samples are sent to an outside laboratory for analysis.


AAFCO Trials We are able to perform AAFCO adult canine maintenance and digestibility trials at Four Rivers. Often we can also add additional types of testing concurrent with AAFCO trials.


Palatability Think Labradors will eat whatever is put in front of them? Think again! Our hand-picked and accuracy tested panel of palatability dogs are guaranteed to help you determine the tastiest kibble or palatant. Studies have proven there can be differences in taste preferences between small and large breed dogs, and even by region or housing setup. Have your kibble taste tested by the most popular breed in the United States!


Toy and Treat Testing Chew time, palatability, and field testing are just some of the things we can look at when testing treats or toys.


Specialized Dog Panels Unique to this industry, we keep all of our dogs for their entire lives and provide the care and comfort they require as they age. This allows us to use our older dogs in senior specific trials, which is especially useful for immune function, mobility, and inflammation types of trials.


We are always interested in partnering with companies for long term or longevity studies with our dogs.

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