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Hi all, n00b here...

Our GD will be 8 in March. She has been fed Beneful for a few years now. She is primarily my boyfriend's dog though I also call her my own. When she was a pup, she was fed Solid Gold. I don't recall now what she was being fed when I started dating my boyfriend but her coat was dull so I suggested we change to Beneful because it's what my dad feeds his dog. Then I came upon this site and saw tons of horror stories about Beneful being linked to kidney and liver disease.

Two days ago, Buddha had a grand-mal seizure, which was followed by 2 more within 17 hours. The first was at 6:15 in the morning, and we took her to the vet at 8 am. She was prescribed phenobarbital, which I have been reading can cause liver damage.

I want to do what's best for her but what's also going to work for my family. I am concerned now that we are not doing a good job with her since Beneful is apparently a horrible thing to feed a dog. But if these are her last few days or months, I want to do what I can if it could possibly make things better.

We are on limited funds because of the time of year and just spent quite a bit at the vet's office to have Bu seen and blood work and xrays. I have browsed a few posts regarding kibble and there only seems to be good things to say about food that costs 2-3x more than Beneful. I would love to spend more time browsing on here but I have a dog to care for as well as an 11 month old.

Also, I have limited resources where I live as far as specialty dog stores...I think we have a Terrific Pets somewhere and I know there is a PetCo. within driving distance. Are there any great brands of kibble available at these stores??

I just want to make sure our dog is being fed as well as we can reasonably manage. Thank you all if you're able to help.
 

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Do you have a Costco nearby? If so their Kirkland signature dry food is decent for the price...I think that its ~$23 for a 40# bag.

Kirkland isn't the best food that you can buy, but for the price its probably the best thing that you are going to find out there. If you had unlimited funds I would say to go with Orijen or EVO, but since money is tight I would go with the best that you can get and that IMO is Kirkland. I would post a link with the dogfoodanalysis review on it, but their site is down for maintenance. Follow this link Dog Food Analysis - Reviews of kibble and click on reviews and do a search for the food and it will bring up the score.

I had my dogs on it before I switched to raw, and they did alright on it. But regardless, I think that you should switch to another food right away. Beneful is equivalent to garbage and doesn't do your sweet Dane any favors.

I would stick with the phenobarbitol if it were my dog. When dealing with epileptic dogs, you worry more about them having seizures that can definitely kill them than liver failure. Guess it comes down to what is worse for the dog or the greater of the 2 evils, which is seirzures considering they can cause brain damage that can have lasting results on not only her physical capacity, but her internal health.
 

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I would stick with the phenobarbitol if it were my dog. When dealing with epileptic dogs, you worry more about them having seizures that can definitely kill them than liver failure. Guess it comes down to what is worse for the dog or the greater of the 2 evils, which is seirzures considering they can cause brain damage that can have lasting results on not only her physical capacity, but her internal health.
i do intend to keep her on phenobarb because i agree, liver damage isn't a given and it's certainly not comparable to a seizure. i just figured great, here i am feeding her food that's causing all of these dogs to have liver damage and now she's on a medication for the rest of her life that also can cause liver damage, so i figure i at least have to do something about the food.

is there a specific ingredient or ingredients that i'm looking for when choosing a healthier food? i keep seeing "grain-free" foods on here...is that the main
ingredient that better foods leave out? i also understand i want a preservative-free kibble. we don't have costco here. i'm going to try petco and see if i can find something there...otherwise i'm to the point i guess i would order her something online...
 

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Grainless is the ideal thing to go with when chosing a better dog food, but they are more expensive and out of your price range.

There are better dog foods out there that are not grainless. You want to see at least 3 named meat meals (ie: chicken meal, turkey meal, herring meal, etc) as the first ingredients. Stay away from by-product meals, because they are highly variable and not great to feed your dog.

Try and find a food with limited ingredients if you can. More ingredients is definitely not better when it comes to kibbles.

Study the dog food analysis site, when it comes back up, and choose a food on there that sounds ideal. That site is an unbiased site that rates every food out there equally based on ingredients.
 

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California Natural is a good food, with limited ingredients and cheaper than most high-ends.

I believe it was $38 for a 30lb bag, compaered to $55-$65 for Evo, etc., But this is from my local store. You may have to shop around or start ordering online.

Petfooddirect.com has a lot of free shipping offers, and has a lot of specials and coupons. Check it out
 

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I would go with a grain free food, especially with an older, geriatric dog, its best to stick with something thats easier to digest. The least expensive of grain free's is Taste of the Wild, its available through most feed stores, but you need to check their store locator to find one near you:
Taste of the Wild : Dealer Locator

here are couple based on the city youre in:

Williams Farm and Garden Center
1309 Old Cherry Point Rd
New Bern, North Carolina 28560
Phone: 252-638-1983
Distance: 15.4 miles


Bill's Pet Shop #1
2636 Dr M L King Jr Blvd
New Bern, North Carolina 28562
Phone: 252-637-3997
Distance: 18.6 miles
 

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I forgot to mention something else, I had a coworker with a maltese mix that had frequent seizures, I asked him what he was feeding that he said whatever was the cheapest the grocery store, so I suggested taste of the wild, I recently spoke to him again and he told me that the dog havent had a seizure since the food switch.
At the time I didnt know there was a link between grains and seizures, I just figured if his dog had a hard time digesting something, it would manifest itself in some sort of illness, I guess my hunch was right.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I forgot to mention something else, I had a coworker with a maltese mix that had frequent seizures, I asked him what he was feeding that he said whatever was the cheapest the grocery store, so I suggested taste of the wild, I recently spoke to him again and he told me that the dog havent had a seizure since the food switch.
At the time I didnt know there was a link between grains and seizures, I just figured if his dog had a hard time digesting something, it would manifest itself in some sort of illness, I guess my hunch was right.
i spent some time reading about beneful and the issues people were having, and there were a few people who said their dogs were having seizures until they switched to a more nutritious brand. i guess after doing so much thinking i am willing to pay for her to have better food if it could be something that "simple." it doesn't help me to sleep at night knowing that if maybe we fed her "better" she would not be in this situation. thank you for your advice and thank you for the references...i did know about bill's pet shop but the commercials they have make it seem like another puppymill type of store...so i never went in there. i have to go to that city today so i will check both stores out. thanks so much.
 

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Grainless is the ideal thing to go with when chosing a better dog food, but they are more expensive and out of your price range.

There are better dog foods out there that are not grainless. You want to see at least 3 named meat meals (ie: chicken meal, turkey meal, herring meal, etc) as the first ingredients. Stay away from by-product meals, because they are highly variable and not great to feed your dog.

Try and find a food with limited ingredients if you can. More ingredients is definitely not better when it comes to kibbles.

Study the dog food analysis site, when it comes back up, and choose a food on there that sounds ideal. That site is an unbiased site that rates every food out there equally based on ingredients.

thank you for the tips. i slept awful last night, thinking i was partly responsible for getting her sick. i don't want to even go there anymore as far as cost is concerned because if better food could possibly get her better, then i'm willing to try. my kiddo won't even know he didn't have a christmas :frown: but i can't bear to lose our dog right now and i want to do anything possible to get her back on her feet.
 

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thank you for the tips. i slept awful last night, thinking i was partly responsible for getting her sick. i don't want to even go there anymore as far as cost is concerned because if better food could possibly get her better, then i'm willing to try. my kiddo won't even know he didn't have a christmas :frown: but i can't bear to lose our dog right now and i want to do anything possible to get her back on her feet.
Don't feel bad for something that you had no idea would happen. If anything take your anger out in writing a letter to the makers of Beneful stating how upset you are for them marketing a food that is aweful for dogs. Because if it were not for their commercials on TV misleading you as well as millions of other pet owners out there, your dog would be happier and healthier. The fact that they still produce crap food for animals is just sick and wrong.
 

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I looked up the price of beneful and its $30 for 30 lb bag, Taste of the wild is only $10 more, but keep in mind since its 32% protein vs. 25% in beneful, you'll be feeding a bit less since its more filling, which evens out the cost a bit.

Best of luck, let us know how it goes.
 

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Don't feel bad for something that you had no idea would happen. If anything take your anger out in writing a letter to the makers of Beneful stating how upset you are for them marketing a food that is aweful for dogs. Because if it were not for their commercials on TV misleading you as well as millions of other pet owners out there, your dog would be happier and healthier. The fact that they still produce crap food for animals is just sick and wrong.
Yes you can't feel bad, write a letter! ....It pisses me off so much that all I see on TV is this crap food being advertised. Even on Animal Planet, all I see is Iams, Purina, Beneful, etc....

I try to tell people that I know feed this crap to switch and direct them here and to dog food analysis, but most of them are too ignorant to even look. At least you did some research and found out a lot of information. Just look forward, and don't worry, because now you'll be giving your dog something 100% better.
 

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I try to tell people that I know feed this crap to switch and direct them here and to dog food analysis, but most of them are too ignorant to even look. At least you did some research and found out a lot of information. Just look forward, and don't worry, because now you'll be giving your dog something 100% better.
I do the exact same thing LOL and am always disappointed when they don't :frown:
 

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Yes you can't feel bad, write a letter! ....It pisses me off so much that all I see on TV is this crap food being advertised. Even on Animal Planet, all I see is Iams, Purina, Beneful, etc....

I try to tell people that I know feed this crap to switch and direct them here and to dog food analysis, but most of them are too ignorant to even look. At least you did some research and found out a lot of information. Just look forward, and don't worry, because now you'll be giving your dog something 100% better.
Someone told me that they saw a Wellness advert on animal planet the other day. So the better companies ARE trying to get out there which i think is fabulous! Especially with the people i come across that think becasue it doesn't have an advert, it musn't be very good.
 

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I do not know what the price of Healthwise Adult Dog is in the States, but i have had excellent luck with selling it at my store. It is made by Natura who makes the Innova, Evo, and Cal Nat which are all excellent foods. I try not to reccomend companies who do not make their own food as they do not have autonomy over the food they make. It is a whole grain food which might not neccessary be as good as a grainless, but none the less they make their own food which i feel is important.
 
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