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View Full Version : I found corn in my grain free dog food :( (Taste of the Wild)



FatPalomino
Jan. 6, 2011, 11:15 AM
Taste of the Wild has become a very popular food. I was very happy with it- it was very palatable, put weight on my old dog who had chronic IBD related issues.

My dog crashed last month, and I finally let him go :(

I fed the rest of the bag to the rescue puppy I have who has been keeping me preoccupied. At the bottom of the band, I found several pieces of corn kernels.

I double checked the bag. Corn isn't in the ingredient list. Of course it's advertised as a grain-free, novel protein source diet.

I kept the bag, kept some food, and the kernel. I spoke with a nutrition expert here at school, who said "I'm disappointed but not surprised".

Nutrition and labeling among pet foods isn't so strongly regulated. Not too long ago I switched my horses to a cheapish grain (after seeing a barn full on it, who looked wonderful) and to not fall victim to the marketing scheme of the more expensive feeds.... and they still look wonderful.

I'm looking at sending the food out to a lab to get fully analyzed. Has anyone else ever seen something odd with TOTW food? (I switched the puppy back to a cheaper feed).

SaturdayNightLive
Jan. 6, 2011, 11:19 AM
The corn probably just slipped in at the bagging facility. Even if they did use corn as an ingredient, they wouldn't be adding whole kernels and they certainly wouldn't be doing it at the bagging facility.

I seriously would not take this as an indication that corn is now being used as an ingredient.

katarine
Jan. 6, 2011, 11:40 AM
I am very sorry for the loss of your pet.


As for the feed...
if it was a Purina product the torches would be lit and the cauldron bubblin'...

FatPalomino
Jan. 6, 2011, 11:57 AM
To clarify, there were fragments of corn kernels in the bottom of the bag..... many of them.... who knows. I know after beginning to eat this bag of food, my puppy got similar clinical signs to my old dog.... we did some biopsy's of her and couldn't find anything definitive. Hopefully we can get the ingredients in this batch identified.... if nothing else, for my own interest.

Thanks for the condolence. He was one of those heart dogs, the kind they don't make anymore :(

LauraKY
Jan. 6, 2011, 12:02 PM
I switched from Taste of the Wild because my dogs just flat out refused to eat a new bag several months ago. I tried several more bags, same thing. I blamed it on Tractor Supply not storing it correctly. But, it makes you wonder....

appaloosalady
Jan. 6, 2011, 12:03 PM
Very sorry for the loss of your dog : (

I would be seriously pi$$ed off if I was paying that kind of price for dog food that was supposed to be grain free and found corn in it. Ingredients shouldn't just "slip in" at the bagging facility. What if you were feeding an animal with allergies? What else is just slipping in? I would be making some phone calls.

chance2jump
Jan. 6, 2011, 12:25 PM
I am interested to hear the results if you get the food analyzed. I just switched my dogs to TOTW from another "popular brand" and they seem to approve of it, but that could just be the honeymoon phase of new food.

dalpal
Jan. 6, 2011, 07:28 PM
It's made by Diamond, I've never been a big fan of Diamond.

I tried it once or twice...but wasn't that impressed. Nature's Variety Instinct is my grain free dog food of choice.

ponygirl
Jan. 6, 2011, 07:38 PM
Look at orijen. It's expensive but a 6 star food and worth it imho. The lack of size of the "stools" in the yard is impressive. I have an 85lb dog but yard "evidence" suggests I have a Lhasa Apso. :)

I just wanted to apologize for only skimming the title and not reading the whole thread. I'm so very sorry about your dog :(

Desert Topaz
Jan. 6, 2011, 07:45 PM
I think I read somewhere that they use corn to clean out the machines between types of food. Could be you got some of that in your bag.

DMK
Jan. 6, 2011, 10:24 PM
I think I read somewhere that they use corn to clean out the machines between types of food. Could be you got some of that in your bag.

Yes, I think that is the most obvious and reasonable explanation.

Bluey
Jan. 6, 2011, 10:46 PM
My 6 year old little dog was on Blue Buffalo lately and the last bag she would not hardly eat it, had much gas and stomach cramping after eating.
After trying for a little, I bought quickly a bag of Science Diet and she is doing wonderful on it, eating and no more cramping or gas and is feeling young again.
I know, that brand is rated very low by the experts, but if the dog does well, I guess that is what matters right now.
Both were their regular adult small dog kinds.
Will try another kind next.

A few years ago I tried Solid Gold for a little bit and that clearly didn't agree with her at all, with diarrhea and vomiting.

I don't know how consistent companies are about what they use and where from.

That corn in the bag may have been an accident, but they need to be told about it, so they don't keep having accidents.

Sorry about your dog.:cry:

ladybugred
Jan. 6, 2011, 11:06 PM
I'm sorry about your pup:(

Have you tried calling the company to ask them about the corn bits?

Good Luck

LBR

Nezzy
Jan. 7, 2011, 11:25 AM
this site rates dog foods. TOTW is rated with 5 stars. I am considering trying it b/c my dog has allergies. To the person feeding Science diet- It's mostly corn- CRAP food for dogs. you'd do better to feed your dog table scraps than SD.

http://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/

Alagirl
Jan. 7, 2011, 11:36 AM
finding corn in the bag would not alam me much. I consider this to be in the same category as finding a raisin in your hazlenut chocolate. That's why they put allergy alerts on people food when the product comes from a plant that processes those other things as well.

However, dogs going off their food for no reason would alarm me.

In a book about Dalmatians the author suggested to only feed quality kibble: Dals are notorious for skin allergies, so if you feed only one kind of food there is less to eliminate.

On the same token they would also keep an old label on file for instances that the dog changes eating habits to compare to the current bag. They probably changed formula.


From what I have heard, I'd rather feed Pedigree before I opened my wallet for science diet...

Auventera Two
Jan. 7, 2011, 11:53 AM
TOTW is an excellent line and I have never seen anything weird in the food in the years I have been feeding it. We go through 2 large bags per month. I haven't read of any contamination issues or seen much negative about this line reported anywhere other than dogs who just don't like the flavor.

I've never heard of corn killing a dog???? They can have allergies to it, yes, I have one of those. But I wasn't aware of an allergy to corn that is so severe they just crash and die. I wouldn't blame the food until I had a necropsy done on the animal and found the cause of death to be corn.

They don't just dump whole kernel corn into bags of dog food when it's made with corn, so the whole kernels you found were undoubtedly leftovers in the bagging machine process. Don't think that TOTW is now making their food with corn in it just because you found some whole kernels.

And like Alagirl said, I've found oddities in my own human food from the manufacturing process, and like she said, it's why allergy warnings are printed on non-allergy foods.

So I'm very sorry your dog died but it seems like you're jumping to conclusions without any evidence of why the dog really died.

Auventera Two
Jan. 7, 2011, 11:55 AM
My 6 year old little dog was on Blue Buffalo lately and the last bag she would not hardly eat it, had much gas and stomach cramping after eating.
After trying for a little, I bought quickly a bag of Science Diet and she is doing wonderful on it, eating and no more cramping or gas and is feeling young again.
I know, that brand is rated very low by the experts, but if the dog does well, I guess that is what matters right now.
Both were their regular adult small dog kinds.
Will try another kind next.

A few years ago I tried Solid Gold for a little bit and that clearly didn't agree with her at all, with diarrhea and vomiting.

I don't know how consistent companies are about what they use and where from.

That corn in the bag may have been an accident, but they need to be told about it, so they don't keep having accidents.

Sorry about your dog.:cry:

I'm not sure why you felt you had to go from a high end premium food down to the trashiest garbage food known to man? You could have tried another premium food - there are about 100 to pick from.

Isn't that like saying "I'm allergic to shrimp and lobster so I'm going to eat McDonalds fries the rest of my life."

And be aware that once dogs have been fed junk corn food their whole life and then are switched onto a high protein meat based food, most all of them WILL have gas, bloating, vomitting, diarehea, etc. If you lived on candy bars and cake and suddenly started eating 9 servings of fruits and vegetables a day, I guarantee you'd have a gutt ache too ;) Been there, done that, got the t-shirt. When I adopted a vegetarian lifestyle I had to be careful because I was not accustomed to that much fiber.

When I switched my dogs to a high protein premium food, I had to do it SLOWLY. Very slowly. And we have a horrible time with the stray who had been living on the street eating out of garbage cans. He had diarehea and gas for months when he came here. I actually had to buy him a bag of junk corn food and mix it with the high protein premium because his system could not handle that much protein. He just wasn't accustomed to it. He's now fine, but it was a long acclimation process.

I learned a hard lesson the nasty way when I thought I was being smart and buying raw bones as a treat for my mutts. All 3 of them got a nice raw bone with a little meat left on it. That night we came home to dog crap ALL OVER our house. Literally. It was summer and they had even clawed a hole in the screen in the bedroom window trying to get out. NOW they can eat whatever meaty raw stuff they want and have no problem but it didn't start out that way.

Alagirl
Jan. 7, 2011, 12:12 PM
TOTW is an excellent line and I have never seen anything weird in the food in the years I have been feeding it. We go through 2 large bags per month. I haven't read of any contamination issues or seen much negative about this line reported anywhere other than dogs who just don't like the flavor.

I've never heard of corn killing a dog???? They can have allergies to it, yes, I have one of those. But I wasn't aware of an allergy to corn that is so severe they just crash and die. I wouldn't blame the food until I had a necropsy done on the animal and found the cause of death to be corn.

They don't just dump whole kernel corn into bags of dog food when it's made with corn, so the whole kernels you found were undoubtedly leftovers in the bagging machine process. Don't think that TOTW is now making their food with corn in it just because you found some whole kernels.

And like Alagirl said, I've found oddities in my own human food from the manufacturing process, and like she said, it's why allergy warnings are printed on non-allergy foods.

So I'm very sorry your dog died but it seems like you're jumping to conclusions without any evidence of why the dog really died.


I'm not sure why you felt you had to go from a high end premium food down to the trashiest garbage food known to man? You could have tried another premium food - there are about 100 to pick from.

Isn't that like saying "I'm allergic to shrimp and lobster so I'm going to eat McDonalds fries the rest of my life."

And be aware that once dogs have been fed junk corn food their whole life and then are switched onto a high protein meat based food, most all of them WILL have gas, bloating, vomitting, diarehea, etc. If you lived on candy bars and cake and suddenly started eating 9 servings of fruits and vegetables a day, I guarantee you'd have a gutt ache too ;) Been there, done that, got the t-shirt. When I adopted a vegetarian lifestyle I had to be careful because I was not accustomed to that much fiber.

When I switched my dogs to a high protein premium food, I had to do it SLOWLY. Very slowly. And we have a horrible time with the stray who had been living on the street eating out of garbage cans. He had diarehea and gas for months when he came here. I actually had to buy him a bag of junk corn food and mix it with the high protein premium because his system could not handle that much protein. He just wasn't accustomed to it. He's now fine, but it was a long acclimation process.

I learned a hard lesson the nasty way when I thought I was being smart and buying raw bones as a treat for my mutts. All 3 of them got a nice raw bone with a little meat left on it. That night we came home to dog crap ALL OVER our house. Literally. It was summer and they had even clawed a hole in the screen in the bedroom window trying to get out. NOW they can eat whatever meaty raw stuff they want and have no problem but it didn't start out that way.


You missed the dogs not eating it anymore or doing poorly on it. No reason to continue feeding it when there is an albait cheaper (not SD though) alternative.

Auventera Two
Jan. 7, 2011, 12:17 PM
You missed the dogs not eating it anymore or doing poorly on it. No reason to continue feeding it when there is an albait cheaper (not SD though) alternative.

I did not miss it, that was my point. If the dog isn't doing well on it, then switch, but don't switch to garbage food. Find another good food.

Wooly Wintertime
Jan. 7, 2011, 12:28 PM
The last dog I 'fostered' ate ToTW and Diamond naturals mixed with some yogurt. I am surprised to hear that you found corn in it. This particular dog couldn't keep most other foods down, including canidae, California Naturals, and Evo, I am not sure why. I never had a problem, but I would be concerned too, if it were me finding it and it's obviously not part of the ingredient list! I hope it was a sincere and unusual mistake.

So sorry to hear about the loss of your dog. :(

Alagirl
Jan. 7, 2011, 12:29 PM
I did not miss it, that was my point. If the dog isn't doing well on it, then switch, but don't switch to garbage food. Find another good food.


frankly, I have not seen solid scientific proof that 'garbage' food is so much worse than the high brands.
Might be purely anecdotal, but I recall somebody in this very forum explaining how some of the 'good foods' come to be: buy cheap shit and pack it in fancy bag...the rest is marketing and PR.

My own dogs did very well on <GASPETH> old Roy, lamb and rice. It compared to the bag of stuff that cost twice as much, so much so I would have not been surprised to see it roll out of the same door at the plant.

I don't believe there are any relevant long term studies about the impact of cheap vs expensive brands.

Also, as a little reminder: In the thousands of years man and dog cohabitate, the advent of dog food is recent. We ahve come to consider that only bought dogfood is good...

Miss J
Jan. 7, 2011, 12:33 PM
I learned a hard lesson the nasty way when I thought I was being smart and buying raw bones as a treat for my mutts. All 3 of them got a nice raw bone with a little meat left on it. That night we came home to dog crap ALL OVER our house. Literally. It was summer and they had even clawed a hole in the screen in the bedroom window trying to get out. NOW they can eat whatever meaty raw stuff they want and have no problem but it didn't start out that way.

Sorry but I lauged out loud on that one!:lol: my GF had the same expierence with her dobey! I gave her a deer leg to give to her dog, and let's just say she was up all night letting her dog in and out of the house! and the gas....oh the gas!!!:lol::lol:

Fatpali: I am so sorry to hear about your dog:(

Miss J
Jan. 7, 2011, 12:41 PM
frankly, I have not seen solid scientific proof that 'garbage' food is so much worse than the high brands.

Also, as a little reminder: In the thousands of years man and dog cohabitate, the advent of dog food is recent. We ahve come to consider that only bought dogfood is good...

I have to chime in on this one. I aquired a pug when he was six years old. Poor guy had no hair on his groin and armpit area as well as hot-spots in those places, pooped a lot and shed like crazy.
He was fed science diet his whole life, half a cup a day, which in my opinion is not very good dog food, and switched him to Nutro diet small breed and he flourished on it! within three months he grew his fur back, shedding reduced to a minimum and pooped much less. He was shiny and sleek, and he didn't scratch his hot spots anymore.:)

I agree on your comment about kibble.

Velvet
Jan. 7, 2011, 12:43 PM
I don't know how consistent companies are about what they use and where from.



This is why you have to go to the smaller producers of dog food. The ones that do NOT outsource production of the food, but rather keep it in house and maintain control. The big issue with tainted food was because even a lot of smaller companies sent their product off site to have it made.

I believe Fromm is still small enough and manages their own production. I know that it's hard to find places like that. You could do what I do, buy the Soho dried veggies and add your own meat (I don't generally do raw, I cook a lot of it). It's dehydrated, so you do get quite a bit, even though it's expensive. And, man, does it smell WONDERFUL! I want to eat it when I'm mixing it up for my dog. I always take that as a good sign.

Fairview Horse Center
Jan. 7, 2011, 01:09 PM
I have my dog on Fromm Pork and Applesause. :yes: It is a 5 star food.

She turned her nose up at the number 1 dog food, and I was glad as it was $$$. I have had good luck with TOTW in some flavors, and not in others as she is a picky girl. She loved Wilderness, well all of the Blue Buffalo products, but Wilderness is pretty rich and makes many of them gassy.

I have had several dogs and they all have been healthy on crap food, living with no issues into their mid teens. The absolute best any of my dogs have ever looked though was on Purina High Pro about 20 years ago. The dull coats just started to gleam within a few days of eating it.

I have also raised 2 puppies that are of a breed prone to hip problems eating Eukanuba or Purina Pro Plan, both thought to be garbage, but their joints have been super all their lives. Both have been great feeds for low stool results, and with my joint results, I would definitely use them again, no matter what the reviews say.

Oakstable
Jan. 7, 2011, 01:11 PM
Dynamite is small and family owned. They make a dog food inhouse, total quality control.

I know someone who used their horse mix and had two different bags tested at a lab, and the ingredients were exactly the same.
I am sure they would be as careful with their Ultimate dog food made from human grade beef.

Products are shipped everywhere by UPS. The nice thing is they come directly from the company in Idaho so they are not stored in some middleman's warehouse.

The dog food has no chemical preservatives and is free of corn and cereal grains, also no hormones and pesticides.

Bluey
Jan. 7, 2011, 02:49 PM
For 40 years, our dogs were on Science Diet, at first that was the best kind of dog food you could find, a step up from Alpo and the rest of the non-descript mill dog food.
We trained and competed in obedience and herding and later in agility, all on plain old Science Diet, with extremely healthy, shiny and sound dogs all their lives.

I do agree that much of the talk today is marketing, as too many performance dogs, breeding, showing, hunting, herding for too many years have done fine on plain dog food, other than the rare one with issues, like allergies.
My little dog has some allergies and was developing a lick granuloma on the thight, that is now practically gone in just a few days of the kibble change.
Wish I had changed her quicker.:(

I don't think it is the food, I think they don't make dogs like they used to.;)

Mara
Jan. 7, 2011, 03:06 PM
For 40 years, our dogs were on Science Diet, at first that was the best kind of dog food you could find, a step up from Alpo and the rest of the non-descript mill dog food.
We trained and competed in obedience and herding and later in agility, all on plain old Science Diet, with extremely healthy, shiny and sound dogs all their lives.

I do agree that much of the talk today is marketing, as too many performance dogs, breeding, showing, hunting, herding for too many years have done fine on plain dog food, other than the rare one with issues, like allergies.
My little dog has some allergies and was developing a lick granuloma on the thight, that is now practically gone in just a few days of the kibble change.
Wish I had changed her quicker.:(

I don't think it is the food, I think they don't make dogs like they used to.;)

I remember when the Hill's products were the BIG NEW SCIENTIFIC ADVANCE in feeding pets.
We had a poodle (20+ years ago) who developed bladder stones. He had to eat a whole case of one of the Prescription Diet foods (not k/d, one of the others, can't remember). It was canned and looked like gray rubber. Had about the same consistency. Oh, poor Beau did NOT want to eat that stuff. He wanted his Burger (what was the extruded food that was shaped like a wad of ground beef?)

Anyway, were Hill's foods EVER all that good? Have they always been garbage or did they go downhill?

Aggie4Bar
Jan. 7, 2011, 03:12 PM
I've never fed TOTW. However, it's possible it was simply bagged at a facility that also bags corn, which would make it possible for corn bits to end up in the production line. That doesn't necessarily mean that corn ended up being processed into the kibble.


frankly, I have not seen solid scientific proof that 'garbage' food is so much worse than the high brands.
Might be purely anecdotal, but I recall somebody in this very forum explaining how some of the 'good foods' come to be: buy cheap shit and pack it in fancy bag...the rest is marketing and PR.
There aren't many studies performed on dogfoods outside those sponsored by the companies that make the foods, so..... <shrug>

From experience, however, it makes a huge difference. The trick is to read the ingredients. I can think of several somewhat pricey brands that advertise a healthier food, complete with advertisements that show healthy foods. The ingredient panel tells a different story. ;)


Also, as a little reminder: In the thousands of years man and dog cohabitate, the advent of dog food is recent. We ahve come to consider that only bought dogfood is good...

Totally agree with this. If it was true that table scraps were a death sentence to the dog, there would not be a dog. Dogs existed off the crumbs of man's table for centuries before kibble. Every time I hear a vet rant about how awful scraps are for dogs, I wonder if they've actually taken a moment to consider the absurdity of that claim or if they're just too lazy to provide a legitimate list of no-no foods.


A few years ago I tried Solid Gold for a little bit and that clearly didn't agree with her at all, with diarrhea and vomiting.TurboMutt vomited daily on Solid Gold. A friend of mine had issues with one her dogs puking on it, too. Why remains a mystery, but I wouldn't use that experience to judge another brand. I've never had that issue with any other brand.


I don't think it is the food, I think they don't make dogs like they used to. Ha, yeah, dogs are a lot more coddled than they used to be. I doubt the SD formula you're feeding today is the same as it was 40 year ago though. Food in general - for dogs, cat, people, etc. - is more processed and contains a lot more substitutes than it used to. Better for production (cost, efficiency) but at a trade-off with genuine quality.

Fairview Horse Center
Jan. 7, 2011, 03:53 PM
Totally agree with this. If it was true that table scraps were a death sentence to the dog, there would not be a dog. Dogs existed off the crumbs of man's table for centuries before kibble. Every time I hear a vet rant about how awful scraps are for dogs, I wonder if they've actually taken a moment to consider the absurdity of that claim or if they're just too lazy to provide a legitimate list of no-no foods.

I don't really think they mean human food. IMO what they are really saying is your dog is getting obese from you constantly adding treats to the food that they actually need to be healthy. No table scraps can be thought of as no McDonalds fries, no Doritoes, no doughnuts and cookies. I don't think for a second they are really not telling you no grilled chicken.

JSwan
Jan. 7, 2011, 04:02 PM
My dog crashed last month, and I finally let him go :(


FP - I'm so sorry you lost your old dog. :no:

fizzyfuzzybuzzy
Jan. 7, 2011, 04:06 PM
For most vets, the rant is more that table scraps=obese dog (usually). It's not that the food itself is bad for the dog (although some things are - chocolate, onions, garlic, grapes, raisins to name a couple off the top of my head), it's the extra calories that poopsie really shouldn't have.

I'm not a huge fan of Science Diet, but have used Pro Plan (only the sensitive stomach, the others were a bit sketchy). My dog is currently on Whole Earth Farm from Merrick with ok results. I think I'm going to try Fromm next. But I wouldn't rule out TOTW all together for corn kernels in the bag.

RedMare01
Jan. 7, 2011, 04:22 PM
I only have ancedotal evidence, but I can tell a big difference in high quality foods vs. low quality (note I said quality, not price) and the cats my family has had for years. My first cats, still living with my parents, are now 13, 11, and 6 years of age. They have all been fed a high quality diet (both wet and dry) their entire lives. Neither of the older two have ever been sick. The younger did have a serious illness, but it was due to ingesting chemicals from carpet cleaner and not anything food related. My current cats, ages 5, 2, and 1, also eat high quality wet and dry and are very healthy cats, never sick.

In contrast, my DH's family members also have a lot of cats. His grandmother has 4, his aunt 6, his uncle 7. They are all religious Science Diet feeders. Because the vet says it's the best, by gosh IT IS. Nevermind actually looking at the ingredients. Both his grandmother and aunt have lost a cat in the last year to kidney disease (plus his aunt has another now that's close to kidney failure), and his uncle just had a cat die in November due to some gastrointestinal disease. All of the cats were under 11 years of age. Do I know for sure that all of this was due to the SD? No, of course not. But, I know what works for me and what isn't working for them.

Caitlin

Wayside
Jan. 7, 2011, 05:04 PM
For most vets, the rant is more that table scraps=obese dog (usually). It's not that the food itself is bad for the dog (although some things are - chocolate, onions, garlic, grapes, raisins to name a couple off the top of my head), it's the extra calories that poopsie really shouldn't have.


I think you're probably correct, that the "no table scraps" is generally because it's hard to monitor the dog's (often excessive) intake accurately when feeding scraps.

At least I hope that's the case, since I'm somewhat ashamed to admit that I think some days my dog gets half her calories from table scraps. She's not overweight at all, though, so my vet has never seemed concerned.

Tessa also didn't do very well when I tried the Solid Gold food. No vomiting or funny poop or anything (she seriously has intestines of steel, I swear), but her coat looked worse on Solid Gold than it did on Science Diet. Science Diet donates all the food for the shelter Tessa came from, so we kept her on it when she first came home. Tried a few other foods, and I've been most pleased with the Kent Haven Naturals that she's on now. It's not grain free, but it has chicken meal as the first ingredient, and they use oats, barley, rice, and a little flax instead of corn, wheat, and soy. And I can get it at the grocery and it's fairly reasonably priced.

OP, I'm terribly sorry for your loss.

Quite frankly, I'd be livid if I found corn in a bag of food that was supposed to be grain free. Maybe TOTW is a great food and this is an anomaly, but I'd still be pissed, and they would hear about it from me.

vineyridge
Jan. 7, 2011, 08:05 PM
I free feed my dogs. And I've noticed that they eat much, much less of better quality dog food. I figure if they wanted more food, it's there for the taking, so they must be doing fine on what they do eat. I can't afford the really top quality food for five dogs, so mine get Diamond Natural Lamb and Rice at the moment. They actually eat less of that than they did the Diamond Natural Chicken and Rice. No gas, no semi-liquid poops, and they are nowhere near obese. In fact, I wish they would gain some weight. I know they aren't wormy because they get their monthly Heartgard Plus.

Now when I haven't made a dogfood run and have to buy locally, there is nothing available that isn't mostly corn in various forms. They will eat twice as much, stink up the house, and the poops are NASTY. They start scratching and hot spots appear.

Given the different in the amount they eat to satisfy themselves, the better dogfood is actually cost effective for me.

Alagirl
Jan. 7, 2011, 08:38 PM
There aren't many studies performed on dogfoods outside those sponsored by the companies that make the foods, so..... <shrug>
Falls under the same category as SD sponsoring what little vets learn in terms of noutrition I have been told...


From experience, however, it makes a huge difference. The trick is to read the ingredients. I can think of several somewhat pricey brands that advertise a healthier food, complete with advertisements that show healthy foods. The ingredient panel tells a different story. ;)
I think I know what food you are thinking off. It's loaded with food color and 'stuff' It would be really a no-go at my house. I had my Dalmatian on Kibbles&Chunks when I realized how bad her skin looked. Changed to a brown kibble and presto, all better....




Totally agree with this. If it was true that table scraps were a death sentence to the dog, there would not be a dog. Dogs existed off the crumbs of man's table for centuries before kibble. Every time I hear a vet rant about how awful scraps are for dogs, I wonder if they've actually taken a moment to consider the absurdity of that claim or if they're just too lazy to provide a legitimate list of no-no foods.

Aside from 'don't give candy/chocolate to dogs or they go blind and the ears and the tail fall off' I had not heard much of an exclusion list...Bless grandma for that caveat tho :lol:
However, considering the junk we eat ourselves, loaded with fat, sugar and salt, Fido is probably better off with Old Roy kibble....truth be told, we, too. :lol:

A friend of mine lives alone but likes to cook, so she always fixes a bowl for her dogs from what she is having. But she is highly allergic to a lot of thing, plus very health conscious, so her dogs eat very well, low fat and low sodium....:lol:
She told me that one time her vet complimented her on how good her dogs looked and immidiately went into the 'OMG, NO TABLE FOOD' after she told him what they ate! :eek::yes::lol:

[/quote]

summerhorse
Jan. 7, 2011, 10:15 PM
I switched from Taste of the Wild because my dogs just flat out refused to eat a new bag several months ago. I tried several more bags, same thing. I blamed it on Tractor Supply not storing it correctly. But, it makes you wonder....

My cats didn't like it either. And the ones that did eat it had diarrhea. So we went back to Wellness and they are fine.

Hawaii
Jan. 8, 2011, 12:13 AM
this site rates dog foods. TOTW is rated with 5 stars. I am considering trying it b/c my dog has allergies. To the person feeding Science diet- It's mostly corn- CRAP food for dogs. you'd do better to feed your dog table scraps than SD.

http://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/

What a great website! Thank you.

Mad that my $50+ dog food was rated a 2. Looks like I'm looking for new dog food next month.

Fairview Horse Center
Jan. 8, 2011, 12:18 AM
This is also a good site http://www.dogfoodanalysis.com/

Ghazzu
Jan. 8, 2011, 11:56 AM
I remember when the Hill's products were the BIG NEW SCIENTIFIC ADVANCE in feeding pets.
We had a poodle (20+ years ago) who developed bladder stones. He had to eat a whole case of one of the Prescription Diet foods (not k/d, one of the others, can't remember). It was canned and looked like gray rubber. Had about the same consistency. Oh, poor Beau did NOT want to eat that stuff. He wanted his Burger (what was the extruded food that was shaped like a wad of ground beef?)

Anyway, were Hill's foods EVER all that good? Have they always been garbage or did they go downhill?

That would have been s/d, and it did look godawful.
However, it was not meant to be a maintenance diet--it was to be fed for a period of time to aid in stone dissolution.

IMHO, yes, Hill's used to be good stuff.
The company was a direct outgrowth of Dr. Mark Morris' work on dietary modification to manage chronic disease.
He started out by handing out recipes to his clients, but not all of them had the time to cook for their dogs, so his wife started putting it up in Mason jars.
Then it snowballed and a "real" food company was formed, but for a long time, there was decent control over the quality.

They were bought out by Colgate Palmolive a ways back, though, and I think that's when the slide started.

Nezzy
Jan. 8, 2011, 12:56 PM
What we also need to know is that altho many good dog food companies had a great rep once, they might have been bought out by P&G or other companies who change the formula after it has been purchased.

http://blog.timesunion.com/petsandvets/384/proctor-gamble-buys-natura-pet-foods/

"I know there will be many who want to comment that their dog/cat has lived to a ripe old age eating Iams/Eukanuba/Nutro/Ole Roy etc. Yes, I know that happens — in fact I met a Toy Poodle that lived to 20 eating only hot dogs and pasta. However, for every “exception” there are so many pets who are less healthy than they could be, who suffer needless health issues, and who live a shorter lifespan, because they are eating inappropriate, filler laden, rendered and overly processed foods, when their bodies crave whole foods, proteins, fats, and yes, bones. As the humans who domesticated these animals, I believe we are responsible to feed them according to their biology and needs, not our convenience."


I agree totally with this statement.

Alagirl
Jan. 8, 2011, 01:46 PM
Sadly, the actual needs have not really been identified. Much of what is 'common knowledge' these days is marketing from the feed companies...

poltroon
Jan. 8, 2011, 02:03 PM
I see a definite difference in poop from different foods. The low quality foods produce a lot more, and a lot stinkier, poop.

Table scraps even 200 years ago were not the same as table scraps today. Bits of leftover meat, cheese, bread, egg are completely different than french fries, fast-food burgers, twinkies, hamburger helper, etc.

Wayside
Jan. 8, 2011, 02:15 PM
Sadly, the actual needs have not really been identified. Much of what is 'common knowledge' these days is marketing from the feed companies...

And there's so much hype around things like animal by products. There are plenty of animal parts that are perfectly safe to consume, but most humans simply find them unpalatable. Personally, I think making commercial dog food out of deboned chicken breasts is kind of silly when you consider that most of our dogs would happily consume whole birds, rodents, rabbits, and such. They really don't care if there are livers, brains, ears, and feet in their food. And my dog absolutely loves bully sticks, which I understand are made from bull penis. Not something I'd want to munch on, but Tessa thinks it's a great treat.

Don't get me wrong, I think it's great that we have so many options out there for us whe it comes to pet foods. And I think there are probably a good number of dogs that benefit from grain-free or other high end foods. But I agree, that there's probably a lot of "junk science" and weird inflammatory information that's tossed out there just to get people riled up.

Wayside
Jan. 8, 2011, 02:24 PM
Table scraps even 200 years ago were not the same as table scraps today. Bits of leftover meat, cheese, bread, egg are completely different than french fries, fast-food burgers, twinkies, hamburger helper, etc.

Since I mentioned that I feed my dog a lot of table scraps, I feel I should clarify that I do a lot of my own cooking, so most of the table scraps my dog gets are NOT things like french fries or twinkies. Not all of us eat that kind of junk food on a regular basis.

Alagirl
Jan. 8, 2011, 02:29 PM
And there's so much hype around things like animal by products. There are plenty of animal parts that are perfectly safe to consume, but most humans simply find them unpalatable. Personally, I think making commercial dog food out of deboned chicken breasts is kind of silly when you consider that most of our dogs would happily consume whole birds, rodents, rabbits, and such. They really don't care if there are livers, brains, ears, and feet in their food. And my dog absolutely loves bully sticks, which I understand are made from bull penis. Not something I'd want to munch on, but Tessa thinks it's a great treat.

Don't get me wrong, I think it's great that we have so many options out there for us whe it comes to pet foods. And I think there are probably a good number of dogs that benefit from grain-free or other high end foods. But I agree, that there's probably a lot of "junk science" and weird inflammatory information that's tossed out there just to get people riled up.

yep, that's about the essence of it.

I had some fun discussions about dog food on doge forums. The opinions ranged from 'I shoot my dog before I feed it kibble' to 'nothing but kibble'

and of course either extreme had a few tangents...

I think - like people food - we need to rethink the general approach and get back to the roots. real food does not necessarily come in a bag or box...

HeyYouNags
Jan. 8, 2011, 02:35 PM
And I found dog food in my horse feed over the summer. Seriously.

I was feeding a SS pelleted feed with rice bran, and started noticing some of the rice bran pellets looked a little odd. Some were round, like cat kibble. Then some square pillow shapes. What really tipped me off was the tiny bone shaped pieces.

Even the picky chestnut mare never refused a meal.

Finally sent pictures to SS, and the rep tried to track it down. The rice bran supplier did in fact make dog food at the same plant. I had her send me the ingredient list from the dog food, which was (fortunately for the horses) cheap stuff that was almost entirely corn.

The SS rep said that lot of feed was about 1000 bags, and I was the only person who called them. Apparently a lot of horse owners don't notice tiny bone shapes in their horse feed.

Stacie
Jan. 8, 2011, 02:37 PM
We had excellent results with innova evo kibble.
http://www.evopet.com/

But we were feeding a very small poodle (his hair would fall out on his ears if he got the wrong food) so it didn't cost us an arm and a leg.

Fairview Horse Center
Jan. 8, 2011, 02:49 PM
I think many health issues are misdiagnosed.

My dog was having skin issues, and the vets said food alergies after lots of testing, including for mites. I went thru about a dozen or more different ingredients of very expensive food, including the one she is currently eating. Nothing solved the problem. Finally I bathed her in a shampoo for mites, and instantly, her "food alergies" were cured. :winkgrin: :lol:

FatPalomino
Jan. 8, 2011, 07:47 PM
The reason I was concerned about it was that my old, amazing dog I had to put down had presumptive IBD (I declined the colonoscopy to get the biopsy to confirm it) but we did do ultrasound, thoracic (met check) and abdominal rads, repeated bloodwork, titers for everything under the sun, and tried nearly every drug he should respond to. He had put on weight and was getting better and better on the TOTW food and Tylosin. He was a 12 yr old Anatolian Shepherd and also had orthopedic problems, so when he went downhill quickly and we saw how uncomfortable he was, and worried he became, it was time to let him go. Better a day too soon rather than a day too late, I always said. I would be very upset if there was something in the food that caused his IBD to flair up and speed up the process, however.

The fact that my puppy, after starting to eat the same food, came up with generalized lymphadenopathy and diarrhea (the same vague signs that my other dog had) after eating the food got me concerned. At the spay her mesenteric lymph nodes were so swollen the surgeon took an aspirate, concerned about GI disease.

I'm sending the TOTW food off for an ingredient analysis, to start. I changed the puppy's food to (gasp) Pedigree. Her diarrhea is gone, although there are a million and one reasons that could be.

FWIW we have fed the rescue and farm dogs Purina or even Ole Roy and they look great. I have a feeling they'd rather eat that than have been put down at the shelter because I couldn't squeeze in one more. Of course the farm dogs favorite snacks are things like horse and cat crap and 8-day-old-road-kill skunk, anyway.

Ben and Me
Jan. 8, 2011, 10:53 PM
We had excellent results with innova evo kibble.
http://www.evopet.com/

But we were feeding a very small poodle (his hair would fall out on his ears if he got the wrong food) so it didn't cost us an arm and a leg.

FYI, Innova was recently purchased by Proctor and Gamble, so if one of your priorities is feeding a food from a small company, you may need to look around.

I switched my dog to Innova from Eukanuba when I got to school (they used to have a free feeding program for vet students) and I recently switched her again to Wellness. I wasn't happy with the Innova -- her coat was really dry and itchy. When I found out they were purchased by P&G, I reasoned that I was really just paying an extra $20 for Eukanuba.

The jury's still out on the Wellness. I do like that I can feed her a little more for the same # of calories -- she has anal gland issues, so one of our concerns is actually bulking up her stool (she also gets canned pumpkin for this very reason).

I still think her coat looked best on Eukanuba. But, I've also changed her supplements around -- she used to get Missing Link Plus, now gets pumpkin/fish oil capsules/GLC powder, so it's hard to know what the real culprit is. Thanks to this thread, I may switch her back to a flax supplement instead of fish oil.

FYI, a 30# bag of Wellness/Innova lasts me about 2-3 months, so it really isn't terribly expensive for 1 dog. Of course, she is a lab, so she doesn't need to eat a whole lot. :)

The scientist in me tells me that there really isn't any evidence that the expensive/corn-free foods are better, but my heart tells me that it really isn't hurting anything but my pocketbook (minimally) and that it might actually help... So who knows.

Wayside
Jan. 8, 2011, 11:08 PM
I'm sending the TOTW food off for an ingredient analysis, to start.

I think that's a great idea. I hope you get some closure.

Wayside
Jan. 8, 2011, 11:14 PM
We had excellent results with innova evo kibble.
http://www.evopet.com/


I tried feeding my cats Evo, and one of them got horribly constipated and developed a UTI. Turns out he actually does much better with more fiber in his diet. Go figure. :rolleyes:

poltroon
Jan. 9, 2011, 02:00 AM
Since I mentioned that I feed my dog a lot of table scraps, I feel I should clarify that I do a lot of my own cooking, so most of the table scraps my dog gets are NOT things like french fries or twinkies. Not all of us eat that kind of junk food on a regular basis.

Of course not! I didn't mean to suggest that you did. But vets are trained under the assumption that table scraps are all junk food, without anyone TELLING them that the assumption is that table scraps are going to be junk food. :)

JanM
Jan. 9, 2011, 09:40 AM
And most vets make the big profit on side items (just as boarding/doggie day care/pet supplies people) that have a high markup. Let's face it, they make their best markup on specialty foods sales to customers and have a definite preference for the types they sell or they wouldn't sell it. We've all had complaints on here about unnecessary tests or procedures on animals that seem to be based on profits not necessity, so why would food, etc be different? Honestly, I think many small animal vets I've run into over the years are split into two groups: the profit as a bottom line through pushing extras or dictating to customers, and the ones who seem to be in it to care for the animal and the owners. The second group seem to be less dismissive of the owner's views also. I really resent being guilted into a special food or what I consider testing that will not do anything for the animal, but will profit the vet's curiosity instead with a risk for the animal.

Doctracy
Jan. 9, 2011, 09:41 AM
I've been a big TOTW fan but recently, my Papillon puppy started eating dog and cat poop. I started giving her one meal of raw meat and some fruits, veggies in a puree everyday. The poop eating went away the first day.
I've since switched all my dogs over to half kibble, half raw. Will probably go all raw and only use kibble if my husband needs to feed on rare occasions.

Doctracy
Jan. 9, 2011, 10:04 AM
Of course not! I didn't mean to suggest that you did. But vets are trained under the assumption that table scraps are all junk food, without anyone TELLING them that the assumption is that table scraps are going to be junk food. :)

Mine too. I feed bits of eggs, meat, fruits, veggies. Bread. Whatever is on the menu for us that day. I have two toy dogs and a Doberman. My vet is always amazed at how the toy dogs are at such a proper weight. He says I have the only non-obese chihuahua he's ever seen!

Cielo Azure
Jan. 9, 2011, 10:54 AM
I have four Aussies here.

I feed table scraps -about half their calories. Healthy scraps only.

I also feed dog food in limited quantities (I switch around the high quality brands). Each Aussie gets between 1 and 2 cups a days (.5 to 1 cup per feeding). I also just change dog foods from bag to bag (no gradually mixing in and moving to the new kibble). Just open the new type and start feeding -no issues with that either.

My dog's secret diet is TC senior feed and small quanities oats mixed in -made into a mash each morning (LOL). Shhh... They don't think I know...as they sneak around eating off the ground as the horses dribble.

They never seem to have gas, vomiting, etc. They sleep in our rooms, so we are very aware of their gaseous output. They are all in perfect weight. I think having an omnivore's diet of many things keeps their guts happy and healthy.

I do have ONE with severe flea allergies. She will scratch herself raw, if she has a flea.

Steif
Jan. 9, 2011, 10:57 AM
I had my labs on Fromm for about a year. One dog had diarrhea and my 13 year old started to loose muscle tone. Switched back to (gasp) Pedigree and the old girl started to get her muscle tone back and lived till 15 1/2.
Tried some other grain free feeds and both labs started tearing at their cheeks and ears. Cost me over $600 at the vets. Asked the vet if he thought it was the food and he said he thinks there's a lot of hype about the grain free.
He's been a lab breeder for years and said he always fed the junk and his dogs had shiny coats, no allergies and long lifespan.
I also feed my dogs what we eat so I think it has a lot to do with keeping everything balanced.
Found big hunks of blue rubber ( from a machine) in a bag of kibbles. Informed the Company and guess what ...they sent me a coupon for a free bag! Huh, I'd never feed that brand again.

Wayside
Jan. 9, 2011, 11:24 AM
Of course not! I didn't mean to suggest that you did. But vets are trained under the assumption that table scraps are all junk food, without anyone TELLING them that the assumption is that table scraps are going to be junk food. :)

I'm sorry if you thought I was offended. I wasn't, and I can see how a lot of vets and peolpe would be concerned about those sorts of things. You make a very valid point.

Just wanted to reassure everyone that dear Tessa is not living off of Cheetos and doughnuts, in case anyone was feeling sorry for her. Her last few rounds of scraps included some homemade pizza crust, a piece of whole wheat toast with peanut butter than my son dropped on the floor and understandably didn't want to eat because it got cat hair all over it, and slightly freezerburned cooked ground venison :lol:

She also eats 1/2 cup of dogfood twice a day.

And, of course, the occasional cat poop if she can get to the litterbox :lol:

Carolinadreamin'
Jan. 9, 2011, 03:16 PM
Can anyone recommend the best online site (price wise) for ordering Blue Buffalo? It can't be petsmart or petco. Thanks!

RedMare01
Jan. 9, 2011, 06:54 PM
Can anyone recommend the best online site (price wise) for ordering Blue Buffalo? It can't be petsmart or petco. Thanks!

I don't know about online, but I buy mine at the Petsmart store and it's cheaper than what they show online. I just bought a 15# bag of cat food last week and paid $28.99 in the store while it's advertised as $32-33 on their website. Plus I'm sure the shipping is not cheap.

Caitlin

Guin
Jan. 9, 2011, 07:23 PM
And, of course, the occasional cat poop if she can get to the litterbox :lol:

WHY do they do that?? It's SO repulsive! :dead:

FrenchFrytheEqHorse
Jan. 9, 2011, 07:30 PM
Can anyone recommend the best online site (price wise) for ordering Blue Buffalo? It can't be petsmart or petco. Thanks!

We feed BB as well (half canned, half dry), and go through a decent amount of it with 2 large breed dogs. I have scoured the internet for "deals" on it, but have resigned myself to the fact that shipping something as heavy as dog food doesn't make financial sense.

Of all the local feed and pet stores, Petsmart regularly has the best price on BB. Occasionally, petco will send out coupons for 15% or $5 off, which gets it right below Petsmart's normal price, but Petsmart is consistently the cheapest source I have been able to find.

FWIW, one of our dogs is a "hard keeper" and gets diarrhea smelling cheap dog food, and the other one gets fat on air. The "hard keeper" dog is also extremely picky. The shelter told us that she had "undiagnosed intestinal issues", as she basically had diarrhea there for 4 months straight "for no reason". When she came to us, we started her on the BB food, and she has had solid stool ever since. I called the shelter to ask what they fed, and they told me "whatever's cheapest". Understandable, but it makes me believe that the higher quality food is easier for this particular dog to digest well.

"Fat on air" dog has had anal gland issues in the past, but they have resolved since we started feeding BB (we were feeding avoderm before, which I believe is a "middle of the line" food). Best of all, though, is that both dogs LOVE the BB food.

Tap2Tango
Jan. 10, 2011, 11:04 AM
Is anyone feeding the new TOTW dry formula? I believe it's lamb and comes in a purple bag. I just started my dog on it. I was going to try the high prairie formula but the protein and fat levels were higher than the previous food he was getting (crappy iams). He is a 4 year old Shih-tzu so he doesn't really need high protein and fat.
I'm also curious to hear from those who switched from a crappy food with grain to a non-grain diet. How long did it take you to see a difference? He is an itchy dog who is constantly licking himself. He also gets 25mg Atopica every other day. I'm planning on adding fish oil to his diet as well. Anything else you guys can suggest?

jetandmegs4
Jan. 10, 2011, 11:13 AM
I have a dog that has a sensitive stomach. We're visiting the vet this week for a fecal/bloodwork/etc, but beyond that we're looking for an easier food for her. When we got her three weeks ago we transitioned her over that period to the Wellness Super 5 fix-(chicken). Over the past two days she had some digestive issues (improving on a bland diet). She also is frequently itchy. I've used biospot on her recently (last week), and am working up to a good bath (she's a nervous dog, abuse/neglect history). At any rate, I'm considering the following three dog foods:
Wellness Simple Solutions lamb and rice
Blue Buffalo lamb and rice adult formula
Pro Plan sensitive skin and stomach
Any suggestions or other options that have worked for dogs with sensitive stomachs? Will get the vets input as well.

Aggie4Bar
Jan. 10, 2011, 11:42 AM
I don't really think they mean human food. IMO what they are really saying is your dog is getting obese from you constantly adding treats to the food that they actually need to be healthy. No table scraps can be thought of as no McDonalds fries, no Doritoes, no doughnuts and cookies. I don't think for a second they are really not telling you no grilled chicken.Assuming the "you" is a generalized you?

I've always had healthy dogs, which is why the rants come across as particularly annoying. Our entire family is lean and athletic. Our animals are the same. If I were bringing in a fat, lethargic dog and didn't differ much from that description myself, the lecture may be warranted. As it stands, I cook most things from scratch, and our table scraps are primarily fresh veggies and meats.


She told me that one time her vet complimented her on how good her dogs looked and immidiately went into the 'OMG, NO TABLE FOOD' after she told him what they ate! Yep. I think there's a generational component. Some of the younger vets now are more open minded about a varied diet, so it looks like the pendulum is starting to swing the other way. I suppose it could also relate to where they went to school though and how/if the vet school is choosing to teach nutrition beyond a very shallow overview.

chance2jump
Jan. 10, 2011, 11:52 AM
Is anyone feeding the new TOTW dry formula? I believe it's lamb and comes in a purple bag. I just started my dog on it. I was going to try the high prairie formula but the protein and fat levels were higher than the previous food he was getting (crappy iams). He is a 4 year old Shih-tzu so he doesn't really need high protein and fat.
I'm also curious to hear from those who switched from a crappy food with grain to a non-grain diet. How long did it take you to see a difference? He is an itchy dog who is constantly licking himself. He also gets 25mg Atopica every other day. I'm planning on adding fish oil to his diet as well. Anything else you guys can suggest?

I started my 3 on TOTW bison/venison about 3 weeks ago and have seen 110% improvement in my puppy within that time frame. Puppy has only been with us since the week of Thanksgiving, is a 6mth old Boxer. Her previous owner fed Pedigree puppy. :no: It took a small while to get her system stabilized to new food, and we switched everyone to TOWT based on the grain free concept. My other 2 were doing fine before with only occasional itching, but the puppy was itching non-stop. As of this week, they all have super shiny coats, are shedding significantly less, and almost no itching at all. They were treated with Advantix the 3rd week in Dec.

Tap2Tango
Jan. 10, 2011, 12:07 PM
I started my 3 on TOTW bison/venison about 3 weeks ago and have seen 110% improvement in my puppy within that time frame. Puppy has only been with us since the week of Thanksgiving, is a 6mth old Boxer. Her previous owner fed Pedigree puppy. :no: It took a small while to get her system stabilized to new food, and we switched everyone to TOWT based on the grain free concept. My other 2 were doing fine before with only occasional itching, but the puppy was itching non-stop. As of this week, they all have super shiny coats, are shedding significantly less, and almost no itching at all. They were treated with Advantix the 3rd week in Dec.

Thanks for the info. Did your dogs have dry, flaky skin to begin with? My dog's skin isn't dry or flaky and is only inflammed in the groin area where he constantly licks. I think the licking it a combination of allergies and bordom. Hopefully the TOTW will help some.

jetsmom
Jan. 10, 2011, 12:30 PM
Is anyone feeding the new TOTW dry formula? I believe it's lamb and comes in a purple bag. I just started my dog on it. I was going to try the high prairie formula but the protein and fat levels were higher than the previous food he was getting (crappy iams). He is a 4 year old Shih-tzu so he doesn't really need high protein and fat.
I'm also curious to hear from those who switched from a crappy food with grain to a non-grain diet. How long did it take you to see a difference? He is an itchy dog who is constantly licking himself. He also gets 25mg Atopica every other day. I'm planning on adding fish oil to his diet as well. Anything else you guys can suggest?

It took my dog about a week to see any difference in itching, IIRC.
An allergy to common proteins is one of the most common allergies. Lamb, has now become more common, so if you don't notice any difference in a couple of weeks (after the gradual introduction period...don't just change foods all at once), consider the High Prairie formula (Bison and Vension). Since it isn't a common protein source, it is less likely to cause allergies.

Tap2Tango
Jan. 10, 2011, 12:33 PM
It took my dog about a week to see any difference in itching, IIRC.
An allergy to common proteins is one of the most common allergies. Lamb, has now become more common, so if you don't notice any difference in a couple of weeks (after the gradual introduction period...don't just change foods all at once), consider the High Prairie formula (Bison and Vension). Since it isn't a common protein source, it is less likely to cause allergies.

Ok thanks. If towards the end of the bag I don't see improvement I will get the other formula.

GoForAGallop
Jan. 10, 2011, 12:42 PM
Is anyone feeding the new TOTW dry formula? I believe it's lamb and comes in a purple bag. I just started my dog on it. I was going to try the high prairie formula but the protein and fat levels were higher than the previous food he was getting (crappy iams). He is a 4 year old Shih-tzu so he doesn't really need high protein and fat.
I'm also curious to hear from those who switched from a crappy food with grain to a non-grain diet. How long did it take you to see a difference? He is an itchy dog who is constantly licking himself. He also gets 25mg Atopica every other day. I'm planning on adding fish oil to his diet as well. Anything else you guys can suggest?

The new Lamb formula is by far my dog's least favorite of the four formulas. My Border Collie flat out refuses to eat it (we joke that it's because of her breeding....good herders don't eat their herdees! :lol:), my "normal dog" Aussie mix slowly and steadily crunches it down, and even the gobbling puppy gobbles it a bit slower than normal. :lol:

They all eat the Wildfowl one with no issues, but the Aussie and the puppy think the Bison one is BY FAR the best (while I have never laid all four out in a taste test, they are always SUPER EXCITED to get fed with the Bison one) and the Border Collie likes the Salmon one best. I usually alternate between the Salmon and the Bison (the great thing about TOTW is that, unless your dog is particularly special, they can switch between flavors with no "intro" time...or at least that has been mine--and many others--experience.) and occasionally, if the small bags are on sale, buy one of each and mix them together.

None of my dogs had issues with itching, but we did initially switch because my BC mutt was starting to develop these gross benign fat lumps. Those disappeared within probably two weeks of starting TOTW. My Aussie is also seizure-prone, and has not had a seizure for over a year now since switching to TOTW. (Which could be coincidence, of course, but some of the additives in cheaper dog foods have been suggested to contribute to seizures, so I figured the healthier food couldn't hurt!)

Blkarab
Jan. 10, 2011, 03:36 PM
Felt the need to chime in, as I have gone through just about every food mentioned on this thread. The best I have found, bar none is Pinnacle for my dogs and Wellness for my cats.

It's pricey, however, the ingredients are whole and my two Siberian Huskies have never looked or felt better. We also give them Hylasport from Horsetech for their joints. Works wonders! It's flaxseed based, mixes well with their food and my eldest dog at the time showed noticeable improvement in her activity level just after a week of feeding it.

I became very concerned with what I feed my pets after the first pet food recall. I lost a beloved cat to Science Diet, and will never, ever feed that food again. I just lost my 13 yo cat to cancer in the GI tract. He had developed food allergies to Iams about 3 years ago. We couldn't manage it with the prescription foods, because he was allergic to all of them. He did great on Wellness, and my vet really thinks that we had an extra 3 years with him because of how much I micromanaged his food. So now, my cats will only get Wellness and they look fantastic. Soft, shiny, beautiful coats, good weight and lots of energy :)

I get tons of compliments on how my dogs look once I started feeding them Pinnacle. They are a small company, use organic ingredients and my dogs thrive on it. Siberians are very picky eaters and when something is amiss with their food, they simply won't eat.

Read the labels on the back of the bags and compare. It's important. It's worth the couple of extra dollars a serving to feed them something better. You will have less vet bills in the end and healtier pets. Besides, the more grain a food has, the more they are ripping you off. Don't pay meat prices for grain.

Cheyenne is my Jumper
Jan. 11, 2011, 12:10 PM
Has anyone else had problems with the grain free formulas causing horrible diarreah?

We got our dog in March and put her on BB Wilderness dry with about 2tbs Wilderness canned mixed in and it caused her to have horrible diarreah. I tried both "flavors" but the results were the same. I ended up adding rice and that helped tremendously.

I switched her to the regular dry BB with canned mixed in and have had no more problems. She looks gorgeous but seems itchy pretty frequently and her skin is kind of red from licking in a couple areas. I just changed her protein source again about two weeks ago from the lamb and rice to the fish and sweet potato. So we'll see, I think she seems less itchy.

Anyway, if her itch-ies don't get better I was thinking of trying grain free again. Is there a long adjustment period or something? She was on the BB wilderness for about 2 months before I switched her.

Alagirl
Jan. 11, 2011, 12:15 PM
Did you add the new food gradually to the old?

Cheyenne is my Jumper
Jan. 11, 2011, 12:47 PM
We got her from a shelter where they fed whatever was cheapest, so no.

Actually, I started her on the BB chicken and rice (with no problems) and I switched her gradually from that to the wilderness.

I switch proteins on her without really doing it gradually and she never had problems with that. She gets some table scraps (meat, fish and veggies that I cook) without problems too.

I may just try TOTW, maybe it was the brand?

Mara
Jan. 11, 2011, 12:49 PM
Did you add the new food gradually to the old?

Instead of rice, you could also add canned pumpkin (not the pie filling, just the solid-pack) if you think the fiber content is causing the attacks of the squirts. Pumpkin is loaded with fiber.

danceronice
Jan. 11, 2011, 02:23 PM
Of course not! I didn't mean to suggest that you did. But vets are trained under the assumption that table scraps are all junk food, without anyone TELLING them that the assumption is that table scraps are going to be junk food. :)

Yep. Table scraps around here tend to be meat. (And one dog will eat lettuce. Weird dog. However, as I found last night when trying to make my own dinner, she won't eat spinach.)

MissCapitalSplash
Jan. 12, 2011, 07:15 AM
I won't comment on TOTW because I haven't fed it in a few years, but I did want to say that I order food from Amazon a lot.

I feed only grain free, and currently feed Orijen, Now! and Go!. I order them from Amazon and I have Amazon Prime so I get free 2 day shipping, which is GREAT. I have also found the prices to be cheaper than if I bought in the store. It's great!!

Aggie4Bar
Jan. 12, 2011, 08:09 AM
I feed only grain free, and currently feed Orijen, Now! and Go!. I order them from Amazon and I have Amazon Prime so I get free 2 day shipping, which is GREAT. I have also found the prices to be cheaper than if I bought in the store. It's great!!Agh, you just gave me another reason to shop Amazon. Are there any guarantees when you buy online though? I've encountered the occasional bag of moldy kibble in the past and been able to take it back to the store. Curious about how one would handle a similar situation through Amazon... ?


Anyway, if her itch-ies don't get better I was thinking of trying grain free again. Is there a long adjustment period or something? She was on the BB wilderness for about 2 months before I switched her. There shouldn't be much adjustment. It's probably just the brand.

vineyridge
Jan. 12, 2011, 09:17 AM
Take a look at the ingredients on the Pro Plan Sensitive Stomach. I know Pro Plan is generally way overpriced for it is, but the Sensitive Stomach seems to have a decent formula. And it can be bought at many local grocery stores. Price is not as bad as many of the smaller, extra high quality brands.
I've used it in the past and been quite happy with it, also feeding anything Purina gives me the creeps. But this is corn free. Can't remember if it's also soy free. Both of those are implicated in dog digestive issues quite often. The only reason I don't use it regularly is that I can only get it in 18 lb bags, and each bag would only last two or three days free feeding.

Lamb is a much richer and harder to digest meat than chicken. If the problem really is digestive, you need bland food, not rich food.


I have a dog that has a sensitive stomach. We're visiting the vet this week for a fecal/bloodwork/etc, but beyond that we're looking for an easier food for her. When we got her three weeks ago we transitioned her over that period to the Wellness Super 5 fix-(chicken). Over the past two days she had some digestive issues (improving on a bland diet). She also is frequently itchy. I've used biospot on her recently (last week), and am working up to a good bath (she's a nervous dog, abuse/neglect history). At any rate, I'm considering the following three dog foods:
Wellness Simple Solutions lamb and rice
Blue Buffalo lamb and rice adult formula
Pro Plan sensitive skin and stomach
Any suggestions or other options that have worked for dogs with sensitive stomachs? Will get the vets input as well.

wendy
Jan. 12, 2011, 10:28 AM
frankly, I have not seen solid scientific proof that 'garbage' food is so much worse than the high brands.


no brand comparisons have ever been done. I have done some informal surveying and the difference between brands usually shows up after three or four years of feeding. The owners don't usually notice the gradual decline in the dog but you can pick them out by the way they look and act after a few years on the garbage.


However, quite a bit of research on the general nutritional needs of dogs has been done. Frankly, most kibbles, regardless of brand, are truly awful for dogs and don't meet their needs. Many of the things we have come to think of as "normal" about dogs aren't- a "doggy" smell; huge poops; smelly gas; dirty teeth; impacted anal glands; allergies; fatness; arthritis; diabetes; kidney disease etc. these are all in part caused by being fed bad diets. Even things like torn CCL's and hip dysplasia- the risk of these things happening to your dog has been linked to feeding a nutritionally incorrect diet.

The research strongly suggests that dogs need protein and fat and do not need carbohydrates. Most kibbles, even the grain-free ones, are full of carbohydrates. You need to look FIRST at the nutritional analysis, not the brand name- at least 30% protein, preferably higher; around 20% fat.
Then you look at the ingredients for the big no-no's: glutens, soy, rice protein; generic fish meal (carcinogenic); corn (carcinogenic if fed every day of the dog's life). Peas are a common ingredient these days- some dogs tolerate them, but if your dog is gassy/diarrhea episodes I'd bet its the peas.
Feeding a raw diet is your best bet. Or canned food. Even table scraps are better than most kibbles.
One of the leading causes of death of dogs is bloat. Feeding dry kibble of any brand dramatically increases the risk of your dog getting bloat.
If you do feed dry kibble, you need to supplement it. At a bare minimum you need to add fish oil. Omega-3 fatty acids are very important for health; they are unstable to light, heat, and oxygen. Your bag of dry kibble may claim it has omega-3 fatty acids in it, but by the time it hits your dog it doesn't have any. Lack of omega-3 fatty acids predisposes to allegies and arthritis; puppies fed solely on dry kibble without extra omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to have serious mental impairments that cannot be corrected later in life (slow to learn, hyperactive, etc.).
Adding fresh foods (table scraps are excellent) in small quantities to dry kibble will improve your dog's health and reduce the risk of bloat. Also most "sensitive stomachs" are created by feeding dogs the same thing day in day out. If you feed a variety of foods to the dog all the time he gets used to it, so when he steals food off the counter or your aunt feeds him something off the table you don't get serious digestive upsets. Rotating kibbles (high quality ones) is a good idea, because the concept that we know everything about nutrition and can put it in a bag is laughable; if you rotate across brands, hopefully the micronutrients that one is lacking will be present in another brand.

My own picks for kibbles are Orijen; Nature's variety Instinct; and Evo. Many of the other foods that look good on paper are manufactured by companies of very questionable repute (i.e. Merrick, Diamond).


wendy's lecture on dog feeding

GoForAGallop
Jan. 12, 2011, 11:20 AM
Many of the things we have come to think of as "normal" about dogs aren't- a "doggy" smell; huge poops; smelly gas; dirty teeth; impacted anal glands; allergies; fatness; arthritis; diabetes; kidney disease etc. these are all in part caused by being fed bad diets.

Just commenting on this one little random part of your lecture....I brought my dogs (3 and 8 years) to a new vet last week and the vet was just SHOCKED at how great their teeth were, particularly the eight year old's. He said he usually has to scrape plaque off teeth once they hit age four or so, but that the 8yo's teeth were PERFECT. Clean, nice pink gums. He asked if she was a big chew, and I honestly responded that she was not. (The 3 year old is, but not the old lady. Never has been.) I said that the only thing I could think of is that they get good quality food.

All three of my dogs are also in excellent shape since starting TOTW a year and a half ago, no more seizures from the Aussie, better coats and smaller blowouts from the Aussie, and no doggie smell!

Nezzy
Jan. 13, 2011, 10:29 AM
Wendy- i am confused by your statement that no brand comparisons have ever been done.

these two website have done exactly that.

http://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/

http://www.dogfoodanalysis.com/

wendy
Jan. 13, 2011, 11:12 AM
I meant no scientific studies that evaluate the health of dogs after being fed different brands of food have ever been done;
they are just rating the "quality" of dog foods based on their ingredients.

appaloosalady
Jan. 13, 2011, 11:27 AM
I am currently feeding 4health and have noticed a huge difference in the amount my JR sheds. All of my dogs look great and eat it really well. I will admit I was feeding Pedigree, didn't realize it was that bad because nobody ever had any problems while being on it.

Fairview Horse Center
Jan. 13, 2011, 11:29 AM
That is a study that can't be done as all dogs are different, and respond differently to different feeds. Even with top quality brands, one dog may not be healthy on one, thrive on another. You can also have a dog allergic to beef that may have a horrible time with a high end beef food, but be perfectly healthy on a cheap product that does not contain what he is allergic to.

To have meaningful research, you need a "constant". Dogs are not a constant.

vineyridge
Jan. 13, 2011, 11:44 AM
Anecdotal, but I have some friends who had Border Collies who came with thin coats, and a Lhasa Apso who had skin and coat problems. They started feeding each dog a sardine a day, and the coats improved dramatically. Sardines must equal fish oil, and canned sardines are very, very cheap. They could do three dogs on about $1 a day.

MistyBlue
Jan. 13, 2011, 11:51 AM
Many of the things we have come to think of as "normal" about dogs aren't- a "doggy" smell; huge poops; smelly gas; dirty teeth; impacted anal glands; allergies; fatness; arthritis; diabetes; kidney disease etc. these are all in part caused by being fed bad diets. Even things like torn CCL's and hip dysplasia- the risk of these things happening to your dog has been linked to feeding a nutritionally incorrect diet.


Close to countless amounts of dogs in my lifetime...out of all those "normal" dog issues I've had 1 dog with allergies and 1 dog with a torn CCL.

I have had a couple with arthritis...but that happens in very large working dogs when they get really old anyways.

Had a few shedding machines...those were all Malamutes. Those are gonna shed even if you feed them hand filleted fresh caught salmon on silver plates. ;) Shedding is their main job. They do it very well. :yes:

Never had a stinky dog, oversized or too many poops, dirty teeth, have never in my life had to express an anal gland, fatness is related to exercise...too many non-exercising owners have non-exercising pets and I haven't had issues with that, never had to have dental cleaning done, never had a dog with kidney issues or diabetes.

A major issue with canine health is people buying dogs that require being fit due to working/very regular high amounts of exercise...that they only require the dog to follow them around sniffing pee spots or go on a 1-2 time weekly walk or hike. So they remove a healthy lifestyle and make up for that with different dietary needs. Of course a mostly sedentary dog requires a specialized diet to not have health problems. Give your dog a minimum or 2-3 hours of high energy work daily and see what a difference that makes in it's overall health. (both mental health and physical health)

I've never fed "I think my dog is a wild wolf" food. :winkgrin: And that's even despite the fact that I've had numerous seized wolf hybrids who actually *were* wolves. :D

Not to mention that working line Malamutes are as genetically close to a wolf as a domestic dog gets.

Almost all have thrived and lived longer than breed average...on Purina One.

The horrors! :eek:

(I don't have an exact canine count...but I'd hazard a guess over 50...around and about?)

Jumpin_Horses
Jan. 13, 2011, 12:07 PM
Close to countless amounts of dogs in my lifetime...out of all those "normal" dog issues I've had 1 dog with allergies and 1 dog with a torn CCL.

I have had a couple with arthritis...but that happens in very large working dogs when they get really old anyways.

Had a few shedding machines...those were all Malamutes. Those are gonna shed even if you feed them hand filleted fresh caught salmon on silver plates. ;) Shedding is their main job. They do it very well. :yes:

Never had a stinky dog, oversized or too many poops, dirty teeth, have never in my life had to express an anal gland, fatness is related to exercise...too many non-exercising owners have non-exercising pets and I haven't had issues with that, never had to have dental cleaning done, never had a dog with kidney issues or diabetes.

And I've never fed "I think my dog is a wild wolf" food. :winkgrin: And that's even despite the fact that I've had numerous seized wolf hybrids who actually *were* wolves. :D

Not to mention that working line Malamutes are as genetically close to a wolf as a domestic dog gets.

Almost all have thrived and lived longer than breed average...on Purina One.

The horrors! :eek:

(I don't have an exact canine count...but I'd hazard a guess over 50...around and about?)

you got lucky.. actually. and ive always been pretty lucky too until I got MiHunka

I got her as a puppy from a rescue, where she lived outside, and was just weaned from mama. Mama=German Sheperd, Daddy=St. Bernard

I got her home and her hair fell out, and her skin got really hot. she would NOT eat anything. she had constant ear infections. she was miserable. so, I took her to the vet. out of the 21 things we tested her for allergies, she was **deathly** allergic to 19 :eek:

this has been difficult. the only food available to her in my area, was Cal. Natural dry, and evo canned beef... thats it. for the most part, that cleared up her skin about 95%. I thought that was the best I could do for her.

she cant have: ANY poultry, eggs, ANY grains, etc.. the list goes on and on

she also has a very sensitive stomach. she would go for over 24 hours and wont touch a bite of anything when her tummy flares up... even with the Cal. Natural (but, I had no choice)

Ive actually tried the TOTW - Pacific Stream CanineĀ® Formula and Im pleasantly surprised. she is not allergic to any of the ingredients (she is to the other TOTW forumlas) AND the food is agreeing with her tummy. for the first time in 4+ years of this dogs life.. her food doesnt hurt her... she is gaining weight, and is excited about her meals...... SNIF :(

I hope it continues :yes:

wendy
Jan. 13, 2011, 01:55 PM
To have meaningful research, you need a "constant". Dogs are not a constant.


many of the studies on nutrition that have been done- evaluating the health/performance of dogs on differing amounts of protein and fat and carbohydrates- are generally what are called crossover trials, or pre-post studies. They use the same dogs and feed them diet A for a while, evaluate whatever outcomes they are evaluating, then feed them diet B for a while.

Some studies, such as the horrifying Iams puppy study (showing that puppies fed nothing but kibble were mentally impaired compared to puppies fed kibble plus fish oil), they took a litter of puppies (all similar) and fed half of them one diet and the other half the other diet.


Some studies, such as the one suggesting that you can dramatically reduce the risk of your dog dying from bloat by not feeding dry kibble, are retrospective surveys of a large number of dogs living normal lives.

The wonderful little stories people always come up with- "Well I fed Brand X to my dogs for years and they all lived long healthy lives" are scientifically meaningless. It's like saying "well my grandpa smoked three packs a day and he lived to age 98": sure, sometimes that happens. But in large studies one observes that smoking is linked to ill health and a shortened life. Therefore why risk smoking?
Same thing with diet- some dogs will do fine on inappropriate diets, but the science suggests inappropriate diets are linked to a wide variety of health problems. Therefore why risk your dogs health?

SaddleUp158
Jan. 13, 2011, 02:26 PM
I was going to try the high prairie formula but the protein and fat levels were higher than the previous food he was getting (crappy iams). He is a 4 year old Shih-tzu so he doesn't really need high protein and fat.
I'm also curious to hear from those who switched from a crappy food with grain to a non-grain diet. How long did it take you to see a difference? He is an itchy dog who is constantly licking himself. He also gets 25mg Atopica every other day. I'm planning on adding fish oil to his diet as well. Anything else you guys can suggest?

I have two shih-tzus, one gets fat off air and the other one maintains her weight without issue-never fat/skinny. The air fern gets a feed called NOW in the Senior/Weight Management option. My other one eats Acana, which if I remeber correctly is made by Orijin or by the same ppl. Acana just has a lower protein level than Orijin. My dogs can't handle grain in their diet, they eat one meal of a feed with grain and they will most likely throw up within the next 12-24 hrs (one of the dogs ate my mom's dog's feed Wellness and threw up, happens every time). Wellness is a good feed for dogs prone to being overweight and allergies, like my mom's Yorkie; however, my shih-tzus can't handle it.

Pancakes
Jan. 13, 2011, 02:28 PM
Wendy, while I agree that a good diet is a necessity in having a healthy dog, and you do have some valid points and good tips (I also am a fan of omega fatty acids in dogs' diets), I have issue with several of your claims.

1) Corn is carcinogenic to dogs. REALLY? Please show me studies that prove this.
2) "Fatness" as you put it, or as the rest of the world understands, "obesity" is a result of an improper diet, yes. BUT...a store-bought kibble ALONE is not the cause of obesity, CCL tears, hip dysplasia, diabetes, etc. ANY diet that is fed with an excess of calories that causes obesity can cause a dog to become diabetic, a dog to become predisposed to a CCL tear or more rapidly show signs related to hip dysplasia. The way you're speaking, you're sounding like there is a direct studied link between feeding one type of diet and causing disease. This simply is not true. (Unless, of course, you have proof)

-Diabetes, CCL tears, and hip dysplasia are multi-factorial diseases. Diet alone cannot be blamed for these diseases, and that's just a fact. There is a genetic component to these which cannot be denied.

-Renal disease is also a multi-factorial disease; yes, there is some thought that kibble-based diets may play a role in cats, but we are not sure of how or why. Fact is, our pets are living longer than ever and more are experiencing renal failure now than previously seen when they lived shorter lives. Remember renal disease has many causes and has many, many different manifestations. Actually, there isn't one renal "disease." You can have dysfunction of any structure in the kidney.

-Allergies in dogs are also multi-factorial. There are many dogs out there with undeniable allergies to the environment as proven by skin testing (intradermal testing). There are dogs out there that are food allergic. But, there are dogs that are also sensitive to components of their diet that make an existing environmental allergy worse. So, you cannot simply state that a dog will become "un-allergic" to its environment if you change its diet. Sure, you can definitely improve things to the point where you see minimal effects, but it's not as simple as just changing its diet. If you see 100% resolution with a diet change, chances are the dog was food allergic to begin with (and taking into account changes such as good flea prevention, etc.).

I know this is a super sensitive topic for dog owners and often us vets get reamed for being romanced by food companies (false!!!) and not being taught the "truth" (whatever that may be...) about dog nutrition. Fact is, feed what works for your dog. Feed something from a company that does more than toss some ingredients in a bag; feed from a company that actually formulates its ingredients to some standard, has someone with a veterinary degree or at least some really smart educated people (degrees) working with the company, and feed something from a company that tests its products.

And then, finally, realize that you may be lucky in that your dog has no medical issues, or you may be unlucky in getting one that does. That's life.

wendy
Jan. 13, 2011, 02:44 PM
1) Corn is carcinogenic to dogs. REALLY? Please show me studies that prove this.

corn is contaminated with aflatoxins, which are carcinogenic. There is an "allowed" low level in corn which is believed to be safe. However, that safety level was determined in a way that did not account for a dog eating large amounts of corn every day for years. The cumulative dose of aflatoxins for a dog fed a corn-based diet for ten years is staggering.



2) "Fatness" as you put it, or as the rest of the world understands, "obesity" is a result of an improper diet, yes. BUT...a store-bought kibble ALONE is not the cause of obesity, CCL tears, hip dysplasia, diabetes, etc. ANY diet that is fed with an excess of calories that causes obesity can cause a dog to become diabetic, a dog to become predisposed to a CCL tear or more rapidly show signs related to hip dysplasia. The way you're speaking, you're sounding like there is a direct studied link between feeding one type of diet and causing disease. This simply is not true.
agreed- diet is simply one factor in causing disease, and it happens to be a factor that the pet owner can easily control in hopes of reducing the chance of the dog developing disease. However, as to the "fatness" problem- there really are studies showing that dogs switched to a low-carbohydrate diet lose body fat and build muscle even if fed the same number of calories.



-Allergies in dogs are also multi-factorial. There are many dogs out there with undeniable allergies to the environment as proven by skin testing (intradermal testing). There are dogs out there that are food allergic. But, there are dogs that are also sensitive to components of their diet that make an existing environmental allergy worse. So, you cannot simply state that a dog will become "un-allergic" to its environment if you change its diet.
I'm thinking more about prevention of allergies. The predisposition to develop allergies is definitely genetic; but, and here I'm on shaky scientific ground, feeding dogs grain-heavy diets seems to promote the development of the condition. Also, feeding non-inflammatory diets (namely, grain-free foods and lots of omega-3 fatty acids) often can dramatically reduce the symptoms of allergies in dogs with environmental allergies, and can also dramatically reduce the symptoms of arthritis.



He is a 4 year old Shih-tzu so he doesn't really need high protein and fat.

why not? if he's a dog he needs high protein and fat; what he doesn't need are carbohydrates.

millerra
Jan. 13, 2011, 02:53 PM
I've read these dog food threads and I'm always left w/ the impression of "wow, what happened to the species of dog".

I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong but didn't the domestic dog come to be by living off of human garbage dumps? So, aren't they basically originally scavengers - meant to live off anything?

And now we have dogs that can't eat "anything"?

I have (knock on wood) two (purebred) dogs and a couple before that who seem quite healthy, nice coats, etc who live on "cheap" kibble (Iams). (please no flames). Now, I could claim very stridently that kibble is the end all be all for my dogs but that would be a stretch because they are farm dogs. This means that they have been eating poop (horse, cat), whole grains, including corn (steal from horses - no kidding! it comes out in the poop!), cat food, and all things dead or caught that seems nummy. I've seen them consume whole sparrows and swallows that they've caught. In short, my dogs can eat crap and w/stand a good slam on occasion of all kinds of bacteria (i.e. "probiotics"). Isn't that the way dog's digestive systems should work based on their biology?

Has any studies been done on what dogs need for a healthy digestive system - ie. bacteria? Is it possible that our domesticated dogs lead too "sterile" of a life? There are some theories that children who are exposed to dirt have healthy immune systems and less allergies than those who live a "healthier, cleaner" life. Is this also happening to our dogs?

[this is not to insult/flame or have personal insult to those people w/ sensitive dogs - I know but for the grace of god (good luck) go I]

Nezzy
Jan. 13, 2011, 04:48 PM
Wendy, while I agree that a good diet is a necessity in having a healthy dog, and you do have some valid points and good tips (I also am a fan of omega fatty acids in dogs' diets), I have issue with several of your claims.

1) Corn is carcinogenic to dogs. REALLY? Please show me studies that prove this.
2) "Fatness" as you put it, or as the rest of the world understands, "obesity" is a result of an improper diet, yes. BUT...a store-bought kibble ALONE is not the cause of obesity, CCL tears, hip dysplasia, diabetes, etc. ANY diet that is fed with an excess of calories that causes obesity can cause a dog to become diabetic, a dog to become predisposed to a CCL tear or more rapidly show signs related to hip dysplasia. The way you're speaking, you're sounding like there is a direct studied link between feeding one type of diet and causing disease. This simply is not true. (Unless, of course, you have proof)

-Diabetes, CCL tears, and hip dysplasia are multi-factorial diseases. Diet alone cannot be blamed for these diseases, and that's just a fact. There is a genetic component to these which cannot be denied.

-Renal disease is also a multi-factorial disease; yes, there is some thought that kibble-based diets may play a role in cats, but we are not sure of how or why. Fact is, our pets are living longer than ever and more are experiencing renal failure now than previously seen when they lived shorter lives. Remember renal disease has many causes and has many, many different manifestations. Actually, there isn't one renal "disease." You can have dysfunction of any structure in the kidney.

-Allergies in dogs are also multi-factorial. There are many dogs out there with undeniable allergies to the environment as proven by skin testing (intradermal testing). There are dogs out there that are food allergic. But, there are dogs that are also sensitive to components of their diet that make an existing environmental allergy worse. So, you cannot simply state that a dog will become "un-allergic" to its environment if you change its diet. Sure, you can definitely improve things to the point where you see minimal effects, but it's not as simple as just changing its diet. If you see 100% resolution with a diet change, chances are the dog was food allergic to begin with (and taking into account changes such as good flea prevention, etc.).

I know this is a super sensitive topic for dog owners and often us vets get reamed for being romanced by food companies (false!!!) and not being taught the "truth" (whatever that may be...) about dog nutrition. Fact is, feed what works for your dog. Feed something from a company that does more than toss some ingredients in a bag; feed from a company that actually formulates its ingredients to some standard, has someone with a veterinary degree or at least some really smart educated people (degrees) working with the company, and feed something from a company that tests its products.

And then, finally, realize that you may be lucky in that your dog has no medical issues, or you may be unlucky in getting one that does. That's life.

Thanks for this. it's nice to get a vet's perspective. I have never thought my vets were trying to sell me food, b/c they aren't. If a dog has severe allergies they do the best they can to help figure out if a different food is helpful. i currently have a Chinese Crested Powder puff allergic to Cat dander(we don't have cats), Flea saliva, House dust mites, Storage mites and Beef, Chicken, Corn, Wheat, Soy and (etc?).. We are feeding Holistic Select Anchovy, Sardine and Salmon but are giving some TOTW Pacific Stream as well. i am considering switching to the TOTW. i am trying to see if she improves or gets worse while i try it. I spend a lot of $$ on Dog food, but i Also try to research the foods i feed. I do the best i can, and i think that's all we owners can do. But it is important to Try to educate ourselves about what we are feeding.

Appsolute
Jan. 13, 2011, 07:33 PM
Been feeding TOTW for several years to a dog and three cats.

NEVER saw any evidence of corn, after using many many bags of feed.

And yes, it makes a BIG difference in my pets. My now 18 year old cat (only house pet at the time) was doing TERRIBLY on run of the mill "cat food". Switched to Innova EVO and it was night and day. 5 years latter, she is in much better health then before.

The rest of the cats and dog have been on the "good" food all of their lives. HEALTHY HEALTHY and they shine like show horses.

I used to feed Innova EVO which started getting really expensive, and I swited to TOTW.

Oh.. and I know if there is corn in the food (now and then I run out and have to buy "cat crack" at the local store).

If I feed the cats a corn based food, the GOBBLE it up, eat more then twice as much and SCREAM for more. We call it cat crack in my house, or "Cat Captin Crunch"

The TOTW or EVO, they take their sweet time eating their 1/4 feedings..

Oh, and my cat "fatty" (who isn't so fat on TOTW) looking prime in her old age.
The 18 year old cat (http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=14211372836&set=a.43390357836.65677.616592836)

SHINY DOGGY! (http://inlinethumb36.webshots.com/19939/2965875130101250289S600x600Q85.jpg)

cssutton
Jan. 13, 2011, 08:33 PM
I confess to not having read all of the posts.

But I fail to understand why finding corn products in dog food is such a big deal.

Now I admit that whole feed corn kernels, uncooked and therefore hard, would be difficult for some dogs to digest.

As for corn meal, it is difficult to find food for human consumption that does not have some corn meal or some other corn derivative in it.

The foxhound kennels of old, in England, and they may still do it for all I know, cooked for their hounds. The kennel men cooked corn meal to the consistency of corn bread and in that they mixed meat from cattle or horse flesh. There was an art to it and many of the old hunting books describe both the formula and the process.

Whether you like the goals and the results of the English livestock breeder, you must admit that they were and still are masters of developing exactly what they want. Their ability in breeding horses, cattle, sheep and dogs of all kinds is inferior to no one.

A poster above mentioned bloat feeding dry feed.

Two things. The dog must have plenty of water at all times so that he is not thirsty before he eats and one must NEVER feed a dog any feed that has soybean meal in it.

The first thing look for in any new dog good is soybean meal. If it has it, I will not buy it.

Soybean meal will bloat a dog.

I admit that I have no links or scientific papers to support the above, but I have fed anywhere from 20 to 35 foxhounds for the past 52 years.

At the present time, I am feeding 26 hounds.

Of course, as you would suspect, my wife is convinced I know nothing at all about feeding a dog and our house dog gets fed dog food that costs $30.00 for 15 lbs.

There is a lot of huckster in the sale of pet food.

CSSJR

Tap2Tango
Jan. 13, 2011, 08:39 PM
corn is contaminated with aflatoxins, which are carcinogenic. There is an "allowed" low level in corn which is believed to be safe. However, that safety level was determined in a way that did not account for a dog eating large amounts of corn every day for years. The cumulative dose of aflatoxins for a dog fed a corn-based diet for ten years is staggering.


agreed- diet is simply one factor in causing disease, and it happens to be a factor that the pet owner can easily control in hopes of reducing the chance of the dog developing disease. However, as to the "fatness" problem- there really are studies showing that dogs switched to a low-carbohydrate diet lose body fat and build muscle even if fed the same number of calories.



I'm thinking more about prevention of allergies. The predisposition to develop allergies is definitely genetic; but, and here I'm on shaky scientific ground, feeding dogs grain-heavy diets seems to promote the development of the condition. Also, feeding non-inflammatory diets (namely, grain-free foods and lots of omega-3 fatty acids) often can dramatically reduce the symptoms of allergies in dogs with environmental allergies, and can also dramatically reduce the symptoms of arthritis.



why not? if he's a dog he needs high protein and fat; what he doesn't need are carbohydrates.

Maybe I wrote that the wrong way. What I meant to say was that he doesn't need an increase in the fat/protein. He is in good weight right now. I chose the lamb formula because it has a similar fat/protein percentage to what he was previously eating. If he is still itchy towards the end of the bag I'm going to try to high prairie fomula. Since it has a higher fat content, is it safe to assume I will need to cut back a bit to maintain his weight?

Jumpin_Horses
Jan. 14, 2011, 08:03 AM
Read my above post... it would take a short amount of time for "corn" to kill my dog.... sometimes what is not a big deal to some people, just might be a big deal to others.

Im glad you've had healthy dogs all along, I hope you're luck continues. I have been lucky too.... until I got this current one.


I confess to not having read all of the posts.

But I fail to understand why finding corn products in dog food is such a big deal.

Now I admit that whole feed corn kernels, uncooked and therefore hard, would be difficult for some dogs to digest.

As for corn meal, it is difficult to find food for human consumption that does not have some corn meal or some other corn derivative in it.

The foxhound kennels of old, in England, and they may still do it for all I know, cooked for their hounds. The kennel men cooked corn meal to the consistency of corn bread and in that they mixed meat from cattle or horse flesh. There was an art to it and many of the old hunting books describe both the formula and the process.

Whether you like the goals and the results of the English livestock breeder, you must admit that they were and still are masters of developing exactly what they want. Their ability in breeding horses, cattle, sheep and dogs of all kinds is inferior to no one.

A poster above mentioned bloat feeding dry feed.

Two things. The dog must have plenty of water at all times so that he is not thirsty before he eats and one must NEVER feed a dog any feed that has soybean meal in it.

The first thing look for in any new dog good is soybean meal. If it has it, I will not buy it.

Soybean meal will bloat a dog.

I admit that I have no links or scientific papers to support the above, but I have fed anywhere from 20 to 35 foxhounds for the past 52 years.

At the present time, I am feeding 26 hounds.

Of course, as you would suspect, my wife is convinced I know nothing at all about feeding a dog and our house dog gets fed dog food that costs $30.00 for 15 lbs.

There is a lot of huckster in the sale of pet food.

CSSJR

Horsegal984
Jan. 14, 2011, 03:39 PM
Thanks Pancakes for beating me to it and making my reply a lot shorter. ;)

Just a note about TOTW, the only diet that is truely HYPOALLERGENIC is the pacific stream. While they are all grain free the other versions DO have added proteins like lamb and chicken in the High prarie, and chicken and turkey in the Wetlands. So it's important to note that if you are dealing with a dog who is not responding to one of those formulas try the Pacific Stream variety.

This is why it's som important to read the ENTIRE ingredients list and not just the front of the bag. You'd be amazed by the number of "allergy" foods that have some extras added in. Dried egg is like having chicken in the food, and animal digest can be from any animal, so it could be beef, chicken, lamb, bison, etc. However animal fats are not an issue, as fat does not have a protein marker on it so doesn't cause reactions.

Also, for everyone who are dealing with genuine food allergies/IBD, make sure you're aware of what is in your heartworm prevention, joint supplements, and pain medications. Anything flavored can cause problems, even medicines like Deramaxx, Baytril and Heartgard.

Katherine
Vet Tech

Tap2Tango
Jan. 14, 2011, 03:53 PM
Thanks Pancakes for beating me to it and making my reply a lot shorter. ;)

Just a note about TOTW, the only diet that is truely HYPOALLERGENIC is the pacific stream. While they are all grain free the other versions DO have added proteins like lamb and chicken in the High prarie, and chicken and turkey in the Wetlands. So it's important to note that if you are dealing with a dog who is not responding to one of those formulas try the Pacific Stream variety.

This is why it's som important to read the ENTIRE ingredients list and not just the front of the bag. You'd be amazed by the number of "allergy" foods that have some extras added in. Dried egg is like having chicken in the food, and animal digest can be from any animal, so it could be beef, chicken, lamb, bison, etc. However animal fats are not an issue, as fat does not have a protein marker on it so doesn't cause reactions.

Also, for everyone who are dealing with genuine food allergies/IBD, make sure you're aware of what is in your heartworm prevention, joint supplements, and pain medications. Anything flavored can cause problems, even medicines like Deramaxx, Baytril and Heartgard.

Katherine
Vet Tech

So would you recommend me trying the pacific stream over the high prairie if he doesn't respond to the lamb formula? Normally I would ask my vet but since they are dead set on the science diet and prescription formulas, I figure I will ask other peoples opinions.

Jumpin_Horses
Jan. 14, 2011, 04:00 PM
thanks Horsegal

yea, some of the things my dog is deathly allergic to is: any kind of poultry, egg, all grains, etc. the vet tested her and all these things were in the red. among other things. of the 21 things we tested she rated in the red for 19.

I do read all labels now and you wouldnt believe what is in some so called "hypo allergic" foods. their ingredients would literally kill my dog.

she can eat the Cal. Natural (which doesnt agree with her tummy most of the time) or the TOTW *Pacific Stream* DRY only. she cant eat the other TOTW foods. she cant even eat the Pacific Stream canned... it has egg in it. but the dry is good.

I have to watch her around people all the time. she absolutely cannot have any table scraps. her skin turns to fire, her hair falls out, her ears get filled with all this black goo, and she has explosive, uncontrollable d-word all over. even one bite would do her in.

the vet said if she got a large amount of these things, she could go into shock and her kidneys could probably shut down. :eek:

she used to get allergy shots all the time. it was a serum made for her specific allergies, and it actually helped a little.

her heartworm is in the Revolution (also flea control) and works pretty good for her.

arent I LUCKY! of ALL the puppies at the shelter... I picked THIS one :cool:

MIHUNKA

http://i59.photobucket.com/albums/g305/BearFooteFarm/dogs/MiHunka.jpg

http://i59.photobucket.com/albums/g305/BearFooteFarm/dogs/twoDogs.jpg

http://i59.photobucket.com/albums/g305/BearFooteFarm/dogs/MiHunka2.jpg

Horsegal984
Jan. 14, 2011, 08:28 PM
Tap2Tango- Personally I would just go to the Pacific stream. You certanly could do the other ones, but with changing all the treats, and the food, and waiting 6 weeks to see if it works..... I would want to go the route most likely to give me success. ;)

Just be aware that like Jumpin_Horses said some of the canned foods also have things the dry does not.

For true allergy diets I also like the Dick Van Pattons Natural Balance L.I.D diets.

Katherine
Vet Tech