Best dog food for not a lot of money? - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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Old 05-21-2008, 05:48 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Dar View Post
The ingredient list was very similar, the calorie count per cup was very similar so it wasn't like we could feed less.
There is more to dog food than this. The reason that dogs consume less of a higher quality (as opposed to medium quality, say) food is not a matter of calories, fat, protein and the words on the label.

There is also a difference in the quality and/or source of the ingredients, even if they are labeled the same. It isn't really regulated very well, and "lamb meal" can mean two completely different parts of the animal depending upon the source and the manufacturer of the food. One may be highly nutritious, highly absorbable, while the other is not. So the dog would need to consume more in order to meet its nutritional needs.

But I'm not telling you to change your dog's food. If you're happy feeding Kirkland's Best, or Trader Joe's, or Pedigree, or IAMS, then that is obviously your decision. It's not the one that I would make in my house but you're not me.

I too feel that I am trying to feed my dog to the same standards that I feed my family to. I guess I see some of these foods as more of a white bread and canned soup sort of a diet. That's not how we eat. There are high quality white breads and canned soups, but to me it's not the same as whole grain only etc.
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Old 05-21-2008, 07:36 PM
 
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We've been feeding Solid Gold for a year or so, and are feeding a bag of Taste of the Wild right now, just to change up for a bit. Do people have opinions on those brands? Since we're already paying premium prices, we could go to Candidae, if that's better food.

Raw isn't going to happen.
I haven't fed either of them but I've been looking at Taste of the Wild for cats and saw that it received 5 and 6 stars (depending formula) on dog food analysis. I've always found this to be a good indicator for dog foods so it might be something to take a look at - http://www.dogfoodanalysis.com
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Old 05-21-2008, 07:47 PM
 
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I'm a little late into this, but I just wanted to add my $0.02.

We feed our dogs Orijen kibble and they don't need much of it. I had to buy a bag of cheaper stuff once because I was out and the store was out of stock of Orijen, and they needed significantly more food to maintain their weight. It wasn't even THAT cheap, it just wasn't as good as Orijen.

Besides that, on the cheaper stuff, they started to stink and have mountain poops. Plus, their coats weren't as nice and they shed more.

I think good quality dog food pays for itself.

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Old 05-21-2008, 08:09 PM
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There is also a difference in the quality and/or source of the ingredients, even if they are labeled the same. It isn't really regulated very well, and "lamb meal" can mean two completely different parts of the animal depending upon the source and the manufacturer of the food. One may be highly nutritious, highly absorbable, while the other is not. So the dog would need to consume more in order to meet its nutritional needs.
Right. And stuff like fresh food-grade lamb seems pretty absorbable... and Diamond is pretty clear on where it comes from (New Zealand, actually). And again, they ate the same amount of Solid Gold and stayed the same weight.

I can't remember the name of the magazine (Whole Dog?), but they do an annual issue with the best kibbles for dogs, and Kirkland is always up there in the top ten. AddysMama mentioned the pet food ratings, and Kirkland is within a point or two of Canidae

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I too feel that I am trying to feed my dog to the same standards that I feed my family to. I guess I see some of these foods as more of a white bread and canned soup sort of a diet. That's not how we eat. There are high quality white breads and canned soups, but to me it's not the same as whole grain only etc.
Sure, there are some foods like that - but I don't see Kirkland (Diamond Naturals) as a canned-soup type of food. Kibbles and Bits, yes. OTOH, we don't eat all-organic, antibiotic-free, grade A meats food, and neither does our dog.

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Old 05-21-2008, 09:22 PM
 
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Diamond Maintenance food is rated 1 star by www.dogfoodanalysis.com They are a very reliable site for comparing specific ingredients, as well as quality and origin of those ingredients.

Diamond Kirkland lamb and rice is only rated a 3.

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Old 05-21-2008, 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted by KayleeZoo View Post
Diamond Kirkland lamb and rice is only rated a 3.
As is California Natural, Solid Gold, Back to Basics... Canidae is rated a 4. I just don't think that's the wisest use of my money, and the OP said money was an issue.

Diamond Maintenance isn't comparable to the Kirkland - the Kirkland is comparable to their Naturals line.

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Old 05-21-2008, 10:58 PM
 
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Actually, I think that the only 3 star Solid Gold food is their Holistique Blendz and it is marketed for a dog whose protein and fat requirements are lower. They still use all-natural ingredients in HB, and it's USA-made, like their other foods (except for one of the canned cat foods, IIRC)

The only California Natural food that's rated a 3 is the low fat variety, and this always gets a food "discounted" on the analysis website, because they are grading foods primarily on protein content/sources. All lower fat foods have a lower protein content, overall- which contributes to an overall increase in grains.

I don't ever recommend Back to Basics, it's not known as a super premium food.

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Old 05-22-2008, 12:36 AM
 
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How do y'all feel about Solid Gold's ingredient change? I know that they switched the Salmon meal in Wolf King to oceanfish meal, dont know what else they changed.
And since we're talking about not-so-cheap (intitial payout wise) foods, where does Royal Canin's Limited Ingredient line fall, as far as you gurus are concerned? Money is an issue at my house, as it is everywhere Im sure, and Im in a situation where I could recieve discounted food if it were RC, Purina or Hills (blech.) Im probably going to stick with Solid Gold, but Im very tempted by a discount.
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Old 05-22-2008, 06:49 AM
 
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Originally Posted by SevenVeils View Post
But I'm not telling you to change your dog's food. If you're happy feeding Kirkland's Best, or Trader Joe's, or Pedigree, or IAMS, then that is obviously your decision. It's not the one that I would make in my house but you're not me.
Quoting myself

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Originally Posted by Dar View Post
Right. And stuff like fresh food-grade lamb seems pretty absorbable... and Diamond is pretty clear on where it comes from (New Zealand, actually). And again, they ate the same amount of Solid Gold and stayed the same weight.
I actually meant the part of the body. For instance, muscle is more absorbable than is tendon.
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Old 05-22-2008, 10:31 AM
 
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How do y'all feel about Solid Gold's ingredient change? I know that they switched the Salmon meal in Wolf King to oceanfish meal, dont know what else they changed.
And since we're talking about not-so-cheap (intitial payout wise) foods, where does Royal Canin's Limited Ingredient line fall, as far as you gurus are concerned? Money is an issue at my house, as it is everywhere Im sure, and Im in a situation where I could recieve discounted food if it were RC, Purina or Hills (blech.) Im probably going to stick with Solid Gold, but Im very tempted by a discount.
I switched from Wolf King to a mixture of Canidae and Wellness CORE partly because of the price vs. ingredients of the WK. Their stuff is excellent, and ingredients are high quality, but the amount of grain is higher and protein lower in Wolf King vs. some of the other premium foods. The only concern I would have about the change in fish source is whether the Omega 3 Fatty Acid content is still the same; the reason that so many dog mushers feed salmon (besides availability in the Northern regions, of couse) is the Omega oil. I'm not sure what the content of "ocean whitefish" is. And I would be disappointed in Solid Gold if they replaced a more costly ingredient with a cheaper one if there was a quality downgrade to go with it, especially since the price did not go down. I think Wolf King is very spendy for what it is.

I hear you on the cheap vs. expensive food; I can get any variety of Hills food at cost- and the feline and canine Maintenance foods at below cost since they sell a Professional Pack 40lb bag to veterinarians in plain brown bags that's even cheaper. But I just can't bring myself to feed my animals crap food- it's like feeding my kids Ramen noodles because I could get the packs for $.25 apiece instead of whole wheat pasta. Just not worth it.

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Old 05-22-2008, 11:35 AM
 
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Yep, that's the reason we're switching, or one of them. We've been happy with Wolf King, but I'm wondering if we could do better for the price we're paying.
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Old 05-22-2008, 12:08 PM
 
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but I'm wondering if we could do better for the price we're paying.
For just about the same cost as Wolf King, I'm feeding a combo of Canidae All Life Stages and Wellness CORE and am really pleased with the results.

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Old 05-22-2008, 12:14 PM
 
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Don't get too lost in protein percentages. You don't want a higher protein for a lot of dogs (for example, any growing puppy or adolescent who is larger than toy size should not be on anything over about 23%).
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