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I have asked in the past, and I've seen a lot of people ask "what is the truth?" Well, the truth is what works well for each individual. I've seen dogs raised on "junk" grocery/pedigree/ol' roy type foods live good, long lives and have few/no health problems. I've seen dogs on top of the line/grain free/super premium kibble with all sorts of problems...and vice-versa. I would personally like to read what the ingredients are, consider the company that sells it, and choose the best (that I can afford) for my dogs. I think a lot has to do with the individual dog, but the fact that they are carnivores and their unique needs should also be considered. So what is the truth? The only "real" way to tell, besides the obvious you can base this on is what has worked well for you and your dogs.

So, the point to this post is: What has worked best for YOU and YOUR dogs?

What do you feed, why do you feed it, how long have you been feeding it, how is your dog's health (skin, coat, teeth, weight, energy, any health problems (genetic or environmental?) How long has your average dog lived on this similar diet? I'd love to hear what you all have to say and what personal experience for you and those you know help you make your decisions. It would be great to hear from people who've been feeding the same/similar diet to their dogs/multiple dogs long-term.
 

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Well, I am currently starting my dog on a raw diet, but before this I fed him a high quality kibble at all times. Mostly Wellness. He did fairly well on the Wellness through puppyhood, but became more difficult in adulthood. I tried him on Blue Buffalo Wilderness and he did horrible. This was also before it was grain-free though. After that ordeal I put him on Wellness Core and he did fairly well. No dandruff, firm stools, all that. I'm putting him on raw now because I know he could be better. When on kibble, he was defecating quite often, and it had quite a distinct odor....not too pleasant. :rolleyes:

The reason I'm so into what my dog eats now is because when I was a kid, I had my childhood dog, a Rhodesian Ridgeback mix. He spent his whole life eating Kibbles and Bits (we didn't know any better :frown:) At the age of 10, he suddenly stopped eating and drinking. After about 2 days of this, we brought him to the vet. They took bloodwork and did x-rays. Once the results came in, the vet shared the information. He had a tumor the size of a cantaloupe in his chest crushing his heart and lungs. He was put down that night.

Now, there's no way to know for sure what caused something like that, but I'm totally convinced that the food had something to do with it, knowing all the wonderful stuff that they put in it. My opinion is that there's no way to guarantee the health and well being of my dog, but I sure can try. :biggrin:
 

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My first childhood pet was a Beagle named max. he's 14 now, and definately alive and kicking, but pretty much every organ in his body is slowly but surely declining. He was on Pedigree for the first eleven years of his life. Then I put him on Canidae. Even though canidae isn't the absolute top notch food, but he actully did show improvements on it.


Then Champ kind of fell into my life. He was a year old when I got him, and for the first year of his life, he was on whatever was on sale.
Kibbles n' bits, pedigree, ol' roy, and the like. He had grey cow-pie poop.
At the time, I put him on Pedigree large breed adult, and then he had orange cow pie poop. From there we went on beneful for a very short period of time, and then he had tie dye cow pie poop!!
Then I fed him Nutro Ultra, not for very long as this was my first move when i had just started learning about dog food, and quickly after learned the horrors of Nutro. He did okay on it, and he had mostly solid poop, but it was huge, frequent, and rancid. He was also really really dry and itchy.
After that we put him on Wellness Super5Mix (rotated the formulas) and he did really really well.
A financial crunch forced me to make a change, and I put him on canidae, and I was satisfied with the results, but his coat could be better. I don't think he has many bonus points in the coat department, as wellness is the only food that really seems to help the dryness without supplementing heavily with fish oils. His stools were solid, but left streaks behind on the grass and poop scoop.
We tried Evo as well as Taste of the Wild for very short periods. The rancid diarrhea wasn't worth it.
A wedding, moving out of state, and job change put me in yet another financial crunch, and then we put him on kirkland Signature from CostCo. His coat, teeth, energy, etc is exactly the same as it was on Canidae, but his stools are firmer, and clean. They leave nothing behind. We now can afford to put him back on canidae, but have no desire to, as i really don't consider it much better than Kirkland, and there's a $30/bag price difference.


Then along came Grissom. In all fairness, I'll say that Grissom can not handle carbohydrates, so he may not be the best example.
He came to me on Pedigree, and I immediately switched him to Wellness Just for Puppy. This was at the time that I fed Champ Wellness as well. He seemed to be doing alright on it, but has pretty bad gas, so we switched to Innova Puppy. For the most part he had the same results, just a little less gas. He's always had a super coat though. Around 4 months old, grissom got a case of diarrhea that lasted seven months. During this time we tried California Natural Herring and Sweet Potato and Evo Red Meat. We had no change in his condition (except he evo made his diarrhea darker, if that even counts) It turned out to eb a carbohydrate issue, and we went raw, and all symptoms disappeared.


We had Annie on Innova Puppy with Merrick cans for a short period when we got her, and she did very well, though she never really had much interest in eating.

Sorry for such a long post. That is my entire experience with commercial dog foods, on the dogs I have fed them to.


I currently feed raw, but all the "whys" don't belong in this section.
 

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I have evolved from Pedigree and Nutro to Canidae...Chicken Soup...TOTW....to all Natura products now.

Interesting discussion and I don't want to start a war...but I would caution it with some thoughts...

I feel like anything eluding to "it works for my dog" is a bit short sighted. Firm poop and no diarrhea is hardly a complete and thorough way to evaluate a food. Frankly, my dogs all had pretty firm poop, no vomitting, etc...on Nutro and even Pedigree-hardly very good foods. A Dog is a living animal with a complex internal mechanism...one that can actually withstand quite a bit of abuse and neglect. For awhile. It's very possible that we would never know simply by watching our Dogs gobble down food, poop good poop...and have coats that are shiny...that the food wasn't the best.

I think these are important considerations but there are many other variables to consider in my opinion...especially the integrity of the company making the food.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I have evolved from Pedigree and Nutro to Canidae...Chicken Soup...TOTW....to all Natura products now.

Interesting discussion and I don't want to start a war...but I would caution it with some thoughts...

I feel like anything eluding to "it works for my dog" is a bit short sighted. Firm poop and no diarrhea is hardly a complete and thorough way to evaluate a food. Frankly, my dogs all had pretty firm poop, no vomitting, etc...on Nutro and even Pedigree-hardly very good foods. A Dog is a living animal with a complex internal mechanism...one that can actually withstand quite a bit of abuse and neglect. For awhile. It's very possible that we would never know simply by watching our Dogs gobble down food, poop good poop...and have coats that are shiny...that the food wasn't the best.

I think these are important considerations but there are many other variables to consider in my opinion...especially the integrity of the company making the food.
Great addition, Kevin. I absolutely agree. For me now, the company is one of the top priorities when choosing a food. You have to trust the company and trust that they are trying to do what is best for the animals. I also agree that good poop and a shiny coat doesn't mean much...that is why I geared more towards asking the overall health of the dog, longevity, any veterinary issues/etc. My sister feeds her lab ProPlan, and he seems to thrive on it, bright eyed, energetic, shiny coat, good poops... but he had some bloodwork done the other day and I believe she said his kidney levels were extremely high. Could it be the food? a genetic issue? I don't know that we'll really know for sure, but I think the food may be worth a look in this case.
 

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One hurdle we MUST get over in our food discussions is this one...and these are the ones that just make my head spin...

"I fed my Dog Ol Roy and he lived to be 100 years old"

Of course these anomolies exist. There are people who smoke their whole lives who live to be 90 years old. But how many are rotting in the Emphysema/Cancer Ward?

I have a close friend who had a Dog live to be 17 years old and she swears that Dog ate nothing but Cat food for most of his life. It would be absurd to recommend this. Plus, that Dog may have lived to be 22 with a better diet.
 

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The way that I feel about this whole thing is pretty straight forward. The whole mentality of "every dog is different" to me is just plain illogical. Yes, dogs are individuals, but they all come from a common ancestor, are genetically similar (ie same species) and have the same general nutritional needs, nuff said there since that debate has been beaten into the ground.

I personally believe that the whole "every dog is different" mentality has come about from the diversity of kibble on the market. Every dog does better on a certain type of kibble, whatever that might be. BUT...their nutritional needs are the same. I will disclaim that there is the chance that there is a slight change between one individual to another...but those are slight changes depending more on "type" of dog...ie small, medium, large or activity level. Plus the cases of genetic disorder that disrupt the normal digestion process or nutritional needs.

When I fed kibble, Kirkland signature at first and then switched to EVO I was constantly battling ear infections with Emmy, loose stool with both, and tartar buildup on my dog's teeth. But overall they were doing ok. On raw with no complaints in a year and a half.
 

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I agree with Natalie on the "every Dog is different" theory. Aside from Allergies, I would bet the internal workings of all Dogs are eerily similar.

Going RAW...the elephant in the room.

Natalie,

I'm not ready to do it yet, but say I was...what is a good book/online site to start with. Literally, I'd be starting from ground zero.

Kevin
 

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oz ate nutro (i didn't know any better) the first few days he was with me and then came down with some mysterious gastrointestinal illness that he almost died. every test at the vet came back negative, no blockage...so all we could do was keep giving him subcut fluids and feed him boiled chicken breast and white rice. but he ended up having a notoriously sensitive stomach from that point on.

after all that i decided to feed him canned wellness food which was great for his tummy but he constantly had ear infections. we switched to natural balance sweet potato and venison kibble which helped with the tummy and helped a little with the ear infections but the kibble size was way too big and oz almost choked on it a few times. then we went to natural balance potato and duck...which gave oz really bad gas and also big light colored poop. soooo...back to canned food for awhile which helped with both but every now and again oz would puke bile. then we moved to instinct canned which seemed fine but then started adding instinct kibble. now i don't feel it was the fault of the instinct food itself...but oz's stomach was still notoriously sensitive. all this switching food was done over a year and a half mind you.

soooooo...this past summer oz got really sick, bloody diarrhea, bad vomitting. went to the vet...and he had a bleeding ulcer! well to make a long story short he was put back on chicken and rice for a couple of weeks and then one of the ladies on another forum was introduced to sojos (the fruit/veggie mix that you mix with whatever meat). so we tried that and it took a good month for oz to heal even after switching to sojos with meat added but now he has had no issues...AND also hasn't had an ear infection since!

so he eats sojos on a meat rotation, at first rotating every six weeks but now we are down to every three weeks rotating (cooked)...chicken, buffalo, lamb & beef for the most part and every couple of weeks he gets a salmon filet. his coat is AWESOME (before it was starting to thin out and was really dry. we were at the vet a week ago (he had pulled a toenail) and she commented on how healthy he looked and how it had been a long time since they saw him last.

i am just so glad to have finally found something that works for oz. :smile::smile:
 

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The way that I feel about this whole thing is pretty straight forward. The whole mentality of "every dog is different" to me is just plain illogical. Yes, dogs are individuals, but they all come from a common ancestor, are genetically similar (ie same species) and have the same general nutritional needs, nuff said there since that debate has been beaten into the ground.

I personally believe that the whole "every dog is different" mentality has come about from the diversity of kibble on the market. Every dog does better on a certain type of kibble, whatever that might be. BUT...their nutritional needs are the same. I will disclaim that there is the chance that there is a slight change between one individual to another...but those are slight changes depending more on "type" of dog...ie small, medium, large or activity level. Plus the cases of genetic disorder that disrupt the normal digestion process or nutritional needs.

When I fed kibble, Kirkland signature at first and then switched to EVO I was constantly battling ear infections with Emmy, loose stool with both, and tartar buildup on my dog's teeth. But overall they were doing ok. On raw with no complaints in a year and a half.
I ALMOST agree with this.
I think there is one thing that works for every dog, and we all know what that is.
That being said, with kibble, you're kind of working with an industry that goes off of "what can we get away with, and keep dogs alive." On an unnatural diet, there is so much unnecessary things going on, that each one will not work for every single dog.
So in short, yes, dogs of all breeds, shapes, and sizes are the same inside, with the same nutritional needs and they can all be satisfied by the same natural diet. But, the every dog is different theory applies to kibble, because of all the species-inappropriate ingredients going on. Dogs weren't designed to eat plants, veggies, and grains. Some by luck can do it. Some can't, and it irritates me that these are seen as the "sensitive dogs with special needs." No, these are the dogs who require a natural diet for dogs.

Anyway, just my two cents.:smile:
 

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I agree with Natalie on the "every Dog is different" theory. Aside from Allergies, I would bet the internal workings of all Dogs are eerily similar.

Going RAW...the elephant in the room.

Natalie,

I'm not ready to do it yet, but say I was...what is a good book/online site to start with. Literally, I'd be starting from ground zero.

Kevin
PM sent :biggrin:
 

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I ALMOST agree with this.
I think there is one thing that works for every dog, and we all know what that is.
That being said, with kibble, you're kind of working with an industry that goes off of "what can we get away with, and keep dogs alive." On an unnatural diet, there is so much unnecessary things going on, that each one will not work for every single dog.
So in short, yes, dogs of all breeds, shapes, and sizes are the same inside, with the same nutritional needs and they can all be satisfied by the same natural diet. But, the every dog is different theory applies to kibble, because of all the species-inappropriate ingredients going on. Dogs we're designed to eat plants, veggies, and grains. Some by luck can do it. Some can't, and it irritates me that these are seen as the "sensitive dogs with special needs." No, these are the dogs who require a natural diet for dogs.

Anyway, just my two cents.:smile:
Exactly...100% spot on!!!

I just didn't want to be the one to say it LOL :tongue:
 

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I ALMOST agree with this.
That being said, with kibble, you're kind of working with an industry that goes off of "what can we get away with, and keep dogs alive." On an unnatural diet, there is so much unnecessary things going on, that each one will not work for every single dog.
Anyway, just my two cents.:smile:
Corgi, I agree with this for most Dog Food companies...I'm just not certain it applies to ALL companies. Natura and Champion(Orijen) stand out to me as companies that go above and beyond. There's fresh caught Walleye in the Orijen formula...for pete's sake, if that isn't going out of their way to make a nice product, I'm not sure what is ;)

Overall though, I agree. Companies do whatever they need to do to make a profit. I hadn't read the ingredients in Pedigree in awhile...was just in WalMart tonight wandering around and looked at a bag. Utterly sad. I am angry at myself for ever feeding my Boys(and 1 girl) this food. Honestly, I was irresponsible owner/parent for doing this.
 

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I feed mine Wellness Core. When we got our first chi, she was on Purina Puppy Chow, and we kept her on it for a while. I started getting coupons all the time for free bags of Purina One Puppy and we switched her to that. We noticed as she started getting older that she was starting to turn red and her skin would get puffy shortly after she ate. Soon afterwards I joined a forum and learned it was more than likely allergies. We switched her to Wellness Puppy and her skin problems soon subsided, but didn't completely go away. When she was 9 months old I switched her to Wellness Core and haven't had problems since. We did go raw for a while. And our little boy was started on raw as soon as he came to us, but it just didn't work out. We were on the go a lot. And once we were home for a while, it just seemed like nothing was different. They pooped just as much, nothing changed with their coats, their teeth, nothing... I should add, that they seem very healthy on their current diet. Their teeth are nice and white, with an (almost) daily brushing, and plenty of chews and bones. Their eyes are nice and clear, their coats are shiney, soft, and they don't shed much. They are very playful, and we haven't had any out of the ordinary vet bills, just routine vaccinations and yearly exams.
 

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Corgi, I agree with this for most Dog Food companies...I'm just not certain it applies to ALL companies. Natura and Champion(Orijen) stand out to me as companies that go above and beyond. There's fresh caught Walleye in the Orijen formula...for pete's sake, if that isn't going out of their way to make a nice product, I'm not sure what is ;)

Overall though, I agree. Companies do whatever they need to do to make a profit. I hadn't read the ingredients in Pedigree in awhile...was just in WalMart tonight wandering around and looked at a bag. Utterly sad. I am angry at myself for ever feeding my Boys(and 1 girl) this food. Honestly, I was irresponsible owner/parent for doing this.
Oh definately there are companies better than others, I too am a fan of natura and Champion business practices.
That being said, no commercial pet food is a true, natural carnivore diet. I think it's just a matter of no kibble can be 100% meat, and therefore even the "top quality" ones are not going to be entirely species appropriate.
 

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Even if kibble was 100% meat, it would still be cooked. Cooked meat for a dog just isn't natural. Cooking denatures proteins, enzymes and nutrients which are essential for a dog's diet. I know, I know I am getting off track but when it comes stating what kibble is best, I cannot say any kibble high or low quality is appropriate nutrition for a dog because it has been cooked.

(mods, feel free to delete or move if this is not appropriate for this section of the forum???)
 

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Well, when I was a kid, we had two big dogs, a border collie and black lab mix, and a border collie, black lab, husky and wolf mix. Both dogs were on very low-grade kibble. Actually, I think it was Kibbles and Bits. That was a loooooong time ago, though. Both dogs lived to be thirteen years old, and both dogs died of relatively the same thing, which I don't know what it was, because my parents never took them to the vet for it, just attributing it to old age and being mutts. Now that I think about it, though, I wonder if it could have been the food? From what I remember, both dogs never had very soft, fine, silky, smooth, shiny fur, or anything close. They were happy and healthy dogs, never really had to be taken to the vet, but thirteen was still a kind of young age for them to die. I dunno. Maybe I'm just being paranoid?

Anyways, now I feed my two Siberian Husky pups a mixture of Solid Gold and Taste of the Wild (the northern stuff). They do really well on it. Every once in a while I get a case of diarrhea or green poop, and Ryou is always REALLY gassy. But I attribute both to puppyism. I mean, when my little cat was a kitten, she had the worst gas. Then again, they're on Purina. haha. Anyways, they have really great coats, never seem lethargic, and blah, blah, blah. Ryou loves his food, but then again he loves anything that can be considered "food." Amaya, however, is very picky. She has recently taken to turning her nose up at most meals, and I have to trick her into eating by taking the food away (which she's already learned that trick), letting her brother take a bite (she's quickly learning that trick), mixing in things like wet food, chicken stock, cat food, treats, or even pure salmon in wet food form, or just taking it away and letting her eat at next mealtime.

That being said, I will soon be moving them to a raw diet. I am doing my research now, asking my questions, and draining the kibble tub. Once their out of kibble, I'll begin my long road to raw dieting, and hope that works out for them both.
 

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Sojos

I would appreciate anyone telling me their dog food experience with SOJOS. I just purchased a bag of the dehydrated dog food and would love to to know what everyone thinks!!!
 
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