hi has any body heard of Royal Canin or Arden Grange they are european excellent foods much much much better than eukunuba or pedigree Royal Canin has excellent programs especially for big dogs its very very good
I feed my dogs a combination of Royal Canin (I think it's Canadian) and lots of raw food. I've got westies, prone to skin allergies but so far so good on this. the picky eater really likes the raw beef and chicken, too. dry dog food "kibble" was only invented in about the 40's, before that everyone fed their dogs with regular "food." The research you need is not rocket science and I think you can find everything you need to know on a few good websites. Two useful websites that give you info about the raw food diet for dogs are: http://www.njboxers.com/faqs.htm and http://www.randifredricks.com/dogs/barf.htm.
I am reading this thread with great interest. I've tried many brands as well. For what it's worth, here's our story:
My four year old rhodesian ridgeback had beed on Innova dry for years and then suddenly developed digestion problems(?). Just wouldn't eat. Had diarrhea. I thought he ate something bad when I wasn't looking. didn't blame the food--I still think it's a very good food. Our vet recommended Hills z/d. Nope, didn't like. We then tried Wellness. Nope. wouldn't touch it. We are now eating Fromm Family Farms (holistic) duck and sweet potato mixed with Merrick canned (all the flavors are good). Yum. Our vet and I still are not sure what caused the initial food adversion to Innova. Could be psychological after feeling unwell. And both z/d and Wellness have a high fish oil content which may be why he wasn't interested (probably didn't like the taste). It does take time to find foods they like and are good for them!
I'm not an expert on dog foods, by any means.. in fact, I had no idea that there was such a huge range of quality in pet foods, until I had some first-hand experience. When I first got my first beagle (2 1/2 years ago), I thought she had major health issues because she was vomiting constantly (at least once a day). It was always a bright-yellow, bile type - never any chunks or food (sorry for the graphics). After bloodwork and other tests turned up completely normal, I started researching the food I was giving her. Once I read the definitions of some of the ingredients (like by-products), I was horrified and knew that I needed to try a different food for Bailey. The first one I tried was Innova, and that did the trick. Since I made the switch, not once has she thrown-up that yellow bile again. I have since gotten another beagle and he's on the same food. Innova works for us, but there are several other really good foods out there -- you just have to do the research and find them. From my experience, the foods that are endorsed by vets and advertised as being "high quality", have really bad ingredients/fillers. When researching, I would stay away from by-products and corn for sure.
I thought i knew dog food. But the more i tried to learn the more confused i got. i have just recently switched to RAW. last night was the firat feeding and i have to say, my odgs physically have always reacted poorly to a food change. even gradually changing. I was advised not ot do this for the RAW diet. I was hesitant but i did. The dogs endless fart supply had seem to clear within a hour of feeding. they defintly seemed to be more energertic. there poop was a lot less and a nice density. no stomach gurgling, no vomiting , no diahreha. now I know this is hear say. but as it is for kibble. it is all not good. food that contains meat sitting on a shelf for months and in our houses for weeks that doesn't breakdown or rott is just plain weird. thnk how hard that is for a dog to digest. all those presetives and methods for processing are in sane. and who knows how good the meat in that stuff is. Kibble is cheap and my dog food bill is quite higher. but most "good" kibble is a dollar a pound. the raw die is slightly higher after all is said and done. I will keep you posted on the results, my opinion about kibble is defintly determined from disappiontament from it. I feel much better knowing exactly what is going in to my pooches. they love it also.
Bil Jac is with out a doubt the very best food we've ever fed our dogs. No coat problems (german shepherd has a satin sheen to his black coat), wolf hybrid is incredibly soft, shiny. You may pay more, but they really eat less (less in, less out!). both our dogs have free choice 24/7 and are extremely healthy and happy!
I recently changed my girls over to Merricks Puppy Plate (Dry). They had been on Eukanuba Large Breed Puppy. I can tell you my newest is firming up (if you know what I mean) and it's been less than a week. The flatulence is getting better (or less) too. I discovered Merricks on TP reading threads. Having lost two girls in the last year to Cancer, I really wanted a diet that didn't have the chemical preservatives. BHT and BHA are known to cause certain types of cancer in dogs so look out for them. I'm paying $49.00 for a 30# bag and it's lasting longer than the 40# Eukanuba did. This is a good thing since I'm paying about $15.00 more than the Euk cost. I found it on line for $41. and change, but they wanted $14.00 to ship it.
***Edited By: wolf256wolf on 5/11/2005 5:37:39 PM*** Reason: add
well a little update on my RAW diet switch, Everythingis looking great. The dog poop is the weirdest thing it decomposes within 48 hrs. Very gald about that. Also, one proble has arisen. gunny went on a 3 day hunger strike. refusing to eat raw chicken, we hought at first it might be "spoiled" so we tried a fresh piece. turned his nose up. then i pulled a bag of ground beef and gunny went nuts. the malinois is holding out for beef. so we held out till he ate the chicken then let him have the beef. that has been a daily occurence for the last week, no beef until he eats the chicken. but other than that, i am very pleased. the dogs a defintly calmer but more energetic. if that makes any sense.
Lots of comments here about the use of corn that don't seem to be supportable. While some companies have done a good job attempting to differentiate themselves by not using corn, the facts aren't supportive of all the negative Madison Ave marketing glitz in opposition to corn as a carbohydrate source in pet foods. The carbohydrate fraction of corn is 99% digestible - like all grains. The protein fractrion of corn is more digestible than all other grains commonly used in pet foods. (J Anim Sci 1999 Aug;77(8):2180-6). Corn contains five times the natural essential fatty acids as rice, contain very high levels of lutein, an important antioxidant, and is 20 times less likely to be an allergen than wheat. The common misconception that corn is a "common" allergen is not supported in the literature anywhere. The most common allergens in descending order in dogs are: beef, dairy, wheat, lamb (combined comprise 68% of all cases) then followed by chicken egg, chicken, and soy (combined comprise another 25% of all reported cases). Small Animal Clinical Nutrition IV ed., page 437. It's ironic that many who oppose the use of corn due to "allergies", turn right around and recommend a lamb based pet food, when lamb is hugely more likely to be an allergen than corn.
Check out this great link for DETAILS of good raw food diets...http://www.pet-grub.com/purrr/ * I was skeptical at first but over the past year I have phased in raw food as a regular component of my dog's diet. Nothing against commercial foods, they're OK and as a practicality I will probably always use some; but my experience with raw foods is more energy, healthier fur, less diarrhea/constipation, happier doggie. If you want more specifics on what worked for my dog let me know - the web site is entertaining and informative but does tend to make it seem a little more complicated than necessary.
***Edited By: clem on 6/21/2005 3:17:38 PM*** Reason: add more info
Corn is filler. Grains are filler. At least brown grains are better than the white rice sweepings off a mill floor, but they are all filler, and shouldn't be anywhere near the top of the ingredients list on an good bag of dog food. I have heard of few dogs with lamb allergies, but tons with wheat, or corn allergies.
Really good quality dog food is low to none of fillers for good reason. There are better healthier things that could be in food instead.
I have a 4 month old puppy and a 3 year old cat. My puppy gets nutro large breed puppy, she loves it I haven't had any problems with it. My cat on the other hand has had a variety of food. When we got him he was on eukanuba, then we switched to wellness he at it but he had horrible gas, then he went to proplan, he loved that food but when we moved we couldn't find it anywhere so now he is on science diet sensitive skin, well let me tell you it hasn't done a thing for his skin. I'm going to change his food soon. As far as nutro, and the effects that it has had on some dogs coats, making them dull and all, Has anyone heard of coconut oil? My mother inlaw is a heath nut and she was telling me that coconut oil is very good for cats,dogs, and us. She gives her 2 rotties coconut oil with there food and they love it, she says that they have more energy and there coats are shiny and healthy. I'm going to get some tomorrow. The coconut oil also saved one of her dogs lives....I'm definatly going to try it and I'll keep everyone updated as to if it really makes a differance.
LongDogs - just curious as you seem to be reasonably well informed - what do you think of Eagle Pack? I'm in the process of switching from Science Diet to Eagle Pack. I feel I'm going a step up (since the Eagle Pack as a lower grain ratio and more protein sources in the first 5-7 ingredients). But I would be interested in your insight! Thanks
You didn't ask me.. but I've done too much research into dog food..
Eagle Pack is a fairly big step up. It's generally considered in the higher than mid grade food. You are making a good switch, as long as your dogs liek it and do well on it when you are finished switching.
mafiaprincess - thank you for your insight as well. :) I suppose I'm just looking for someone to tell me "You're doing the right thing". My vet has only "heard" of Eagle Pack (which I understand as I have to go 200 miles to find the closest retailer - I'm ordering mine direct from a distributor and shipping it in). If anyone else has insight I'm all ears.