Which puppy food? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 13 Old 09-27-2010, 12:53 PM - Thread Starter
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The breeder sent us home with Purina Pro Plan for Puppies and said she doesn't think its necessary to do expensive foods. Reading the ingredients though it doesn't sound too great. Should I switch him to another brand? And if so how do I go about doing that? I don't want something majorly expensive.

Shawna, married to Michael, mommy to Elijah 1/18/01, Olivia 11/9/02, and Eliana 1/22/06
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#2 of 13 Old 09-27-2010, 01:01 PM
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I've fed Diamond Naturals for years, and I breed Shelties.

You want to mix the food. 1/4 new food, 3/4 old food for 2 days. Then 1/2 and 1/2. Rinse & repeat!
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#3 of 13 Old 09-27-2010, 02:02 PM - Thread Starter
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I don't think we have that kind where I am (Ontario, Canada). I found a review website but I can't find any of the 5-star foods they recommend (looking at pet supply store websites in my area). One store does carry Whole Earth Farms brand which is listed as 4-star. He is very gassy (and they stink!) so something without corn is probably better right? I don't really know much about dog food.

Shawna, married to Michael, mommy to Elijah 1/18/01, Olivia 11/9/02, and Eliana 1/22/06
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#4 of 13 Old 09-27-2010, 02:07 PM
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I suggest reading this link and learning for yourself what to look for on labels vs relying on websites that compare brands. It might look like a lot to learn, but it's not too bad and I've been able to make decisions for myself and not have to worry about whether the website recommending brand a vs brand b is really just a front for selling brand a.


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#5 of 13 Old 09-27-2010, 03:25 PM
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The Kirkland brand of dogfood from costco is really inexpensive and has a much better ingredient list than most kibbles.
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#6 of 13 Old 09-27-2010, 05:11 PM
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Personally if I couldn't feed raw I would use a grain free kibble. Orijen is top of the line for that, but there are other good options like taste of the wild, evo, and more. They are a high price but you feed less, it tends to be pretty comparable.

Really nothing you can find in a grocery store is worth feeding. Big box stores have a couple ok brands. You usually have to do a specialty store or feed stores often have some good selections.

Eta if switching to grainfree most people just switch cold turkey.

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#7 of 13 Old 09-27-2010, 06:41 PM
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I am feeding my puppy raw which is species appropriate and frankly I wouldn't feed anything else. Poops don't stink and they are small in quantity. But as a pp posted said, if (big if) i had to feed kibble it would certainly be a high quality grain-free brand. Here is an interesting article from the UK, Is pet food poisoning dogs.

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#8 of 13 Old 09-27-2010, 10:20 PM
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I agree with green magick, raw is my first choice ( and what we feed) second choice would be grain free food. We used to feed innova evo to our dogs before we went raw.
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#9 of 13 Old 09-27-2010, 10:58 PM
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If your looking for inexpensive, but still decent then 'Irresistables' brand is probably your best bet. I couldnt believe my eyes when I read the ingredients list just for the sake of reading. Thier human food is pure crap, but the dog food reads really good. Presidents choice is my second inexpensive dryfood choice.
When feeding dry I try to fed at least one can of wet a week, or pick up some cheap meat and add it to the food.

Purina dog food is total and utter crap. Even the stuff like 'Beneful'

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#10 of 13 Old 09-28-2010, 02:15 AM
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Do make sure any food you get is either listed for all life stages or puppies specifically - some of the grainfrees are not balanced for growing pups.

I feed Kirkland dry dog food for one meal and Honest Kitchen dehydrated raw for the other and have been very happy with the results.

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#11 of 13 Old 09-28-2010, 02:56 AM
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Be very careful feeding grain free to a puppy. Many of the mainstream brands are NOT for pups. EVO for instance does not reccomend feeding to puppies. And CORE says right on the bag not for pups under 1yr. A few brands have grain free puppy formulas and those should be ok. And some say All life Stages, those are ok too. Be sure to read the whole bag, and do some extra research if you want to feed grain free to a pup.

I'm assuming by your description that the website you are using is dogfoodanalysis.com? I like the site but don't always agree with them. In my opinion, anything that merits 3 stars or better on that site is a good food. I don't think you should feel guilty for choosing a 3 star over a 6 star. Get what you can find firstly, a food is no good to you if its not available! The difference in quality above 3 stars really starts getting picky. And, in many cases, there are other considerations, like the company and its past history, ingredient preferences, price etc that should go into the decision.

Some common, economical foods are-

Diamond Naturals
Chicken Soup For the Dog Lovers Soul (hokey name, good food)
Kirklands (Costco's house brand)
Canidae (this is an all life stages food)

A bit more expensive is stuff like-
Holistic Select
Solid Gold
Earthborne Holistics
Natural Balance
Taste of the Wild
California Natural

Thats by no means an exhaustive list, or even a list of the best. But all are quality foods that seem to be commonly available. In my experience, Innova and California Natural has been reported to be a little rich for puppies. Those seem to work better for adult dogs, although I also know folks who raise pups on it and love it.

To switch, you'll want to start gradually. I'd let your pups digestive system guide you. Some dogs need to switch VERY slowly, others do fine with a faster switch. The plan listed above is a good way to start- 1/4 new food and 3/4 old food. If his stomach seems upset, you can start with an even smaller amount, say, 1/8 new food and 7/8 old food, and then gradually work up.

A few days or weeks of proplan won't kill him, and a sudden food switch in addition to moving to a new home could be a shock for his little system, so don't feel too bad about taking your time to make a food choice.
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#12 of 13 Old 09-29-2010, 01:22 AM
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My very gassy pup is on california naturals lamb...
I was told to avoid chicken blends and stay grain free
good grains are oats and barley in moderation

You need to purchase this type of dog food at a 'doggie boutique' type store and its much better for the dog IMO. a 15lb bag is $35 and lasts me 6wks for a 15lb dog....

If you give cookies or treats you want to make sure you switch to healthy snacks too.

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#13 of 13 Old 09-29-2010, 10:38 AM - Thread Starter
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We switched to this one - http://petcetera.ca/Products/Dogs/Fo...rth-Farms.aspx

The ingredients are good and it has a 4 out of 5 star rating on a site I found.

For snacks he has pure dehydrated chicken.

Shawna, married to Michael, mommy to Elijah 1/18/01, Olivia 11/9/02, and Eliana 1/22/06
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