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Hi everyone. About a year ago, I switched my 4 year old chihuahua to Blue Buffalo (thanks to the advice of posers here!) after ignorantly feeding him science diet. He's loving the new food, but I've been reading that it's not a bad idea to switch foods every now and then for taste and nutritional variety. I've been reading up on some of the higher quality foods, but I'm just a little unsure if giving him something without grains or high in protein would be harmful since the only foods he's ever had have contained grains.

I'm strongly considering Wellness or Wellness Core. My only concern with Core is the lack of grains. Also, I'm considering Innova EVO, but I'm not sure about its high protein content.

Basically, I've been reviewing the dog food analysis reviews site, but I'm just wondering if the really good stuff is too good for a smaller dog that isn't the most active.

Another point worth mentioning, he has cataracts in both eyes and is going to need surgery soon. We're just waiting for the one eye to get worse so both can be removed with one surgery. Would switching now be a bad idea?

Thanks!!!
 

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He's loving the new food, but I've been reading that it's not a bad idea to switch foods every now and then for taste and nutritional variety.
Rotating between foods isn't a bad idea, especially for dogs who get bored with their food easily. If you're going to do a rotation diet, it's generally best to rotate foods of the same quality. So, if you're going to rotate grain free foods, I'd recommend rotating all grain free.

been reading up on some of the higher quality foods, but I'm just a little unsure if giving him something without grains or high in protein would be harmful since the only foods he's ever had have contained grains.
There are some decent foods that contain grains, Blue Buffalo being one of them. Also, Wellness and Innova, and others too. It would not harm him to go grain free now. It would be the same as any other transition, only you do it a little slower, and feed less of grain free foods.

I'm strongly considering Wellness or Wellness Core. My only concern with Core is the lack of grains. Also, I'm considering Innova EVO, but I'm not sure about its high protein content.
Don't be afraid of protien. Your dog, just like every other is a carnivore and is designed to eat meat. Wellness Core and EVO are fantastic foods, and part of the reason they're fantastic foods are the exact things you're afraid of: lack of grains and high protein content. These two things, along with other elements are what go into a high quality food.

Basically, I've been reviewing the dog food analysis reviews site, but I'm just wondering if the really good stuff is too good for a smaller dog that isn't the most active.
nothing to "too good" for any dog. If he's smaller, and not so active, just watch portion control. If he's gaining weight, feed less. If he's looking a bit too lean, feed more. Don't compromise the quality of his food because of his size and activity level, just feed moderately.

Another point worth mentioning, he has cataracts in both eyes and is going to need surgery soon. We're just waiting for the one eye to get worse so both can be removed with one surgery. Would switching now be a bad idea?
no need to wait. Switching now will be just fine. :biggrin:
 

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Thanks! I'm pretty sure I'm going to try Wellness Core after he finishes this bag of food. Also, I forgot to metntion that his treats contain grains. Should I switch those as well?
 

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Have you seen Blue Buffalo's Wilderness formula? I recently started my dogs on that food and they are doing great! It has high protein and "virtually" grain free. It has a bit of oatmeal in it, but it is way down on the ingredient list, so I expect it doesn't have a lot of it in it. Dog Food Analysis gives it a 6 star rating. :smile:
 

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Also, I forgot to metntion that his treats contain grains. Should I switch those as well?
That's up to you. An entirely grain free diet is great, but a little treat every now and then isn't going to hurt.
I use fih oil capsules as treats. My dogs love it.
 

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Have no fear of grain free foods!:biggrin: They are really the best for the doggies! Orijen is another one that is top notch! My dogs love it! I hate the price they love the taste! I use wellness core also the weight management one and it works extremely well! I have also used Evo great food! Just watch how much you give. I would give a bit less than the package recommends!
My mother in law is going for the cataract surgery at the end of the month!I think she would wish to be a doggie at this time so she doesn;'t know whats coming! Shes scared to have it and I do not blame her one bit! Good luck with the pups upcoming surgery! And yes grain free is great for pups! Good luck with the transition!:smile:

http://www.orijen.ca/orijen/Myths_of_High_Protein.pdf

This is a great read debunking high protein myths! Gotta love Orijen!:wink:
 
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Have you seen Blue Buffalo's Wilderness formula?
I think I saw Blue Buffalo has a new Longevity formula. Didn't have much time when I was in the store but glanced at it briefly. Perhaps something for you to consider especially if you like Blue Buffalo products.
 

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Thanks for the replies everyone. The Blue Buffalo Wilderness formula looks good. I'm probably going to add that to his rotation when we get going grain free. As far as portion control goes, he's currently free fed. He's not really normal when it comes to eating as he has a 20-30 minute routine of playing with his ball he has to go through before he'll eat. And even considering that, it's not consistent at all as he eats at different times. Will this have to change going grain free? Or should I just closely follow his weight as advised to see if free feeding works for this as well.

He's certainty not aware of the surgery, not yet anyway--the drive to the vet that day won't be fun, but I sure am. I don't think I could be as scared as her considering she'll be going under the knife, but I'm definitely close.

Completely off topic... My girlfriend's roommate also has a chihuahua. However she's not as food conscious, and I recently found out she's been feeding Purina Dog Chow. My bad food alarm went off pretty fast, but I didn't want to get preachy or anything. So we had the other dog over today, and she was eating some of the Blue Buffalo food. And by eating, I mean inhaling it. So my girlfriend calls me later and tells me that her stool isn't the little black pieces that it usually is, but solid brown. And that she's either going to convince her roommate to buy better food, or buy it herself. So count that as one more dog free or horrible Purina food.
 
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