The Chronicle of the Horse
MagazineNewsHorse SportsHorse CareCOTH StoreVoicesThe Chronicle UntackedDirectoriesMarketplaceDates & Results
 
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 24
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep. 4, 2012
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    112

    Default Dog Diet Help!

    So Ive searched through threads and all over the internet all day (literally) researching dog diets. I did the same for my horses and just recently learned ALOT and they are settled on their diet that I am completely pleased with as are they!! (Seminole Wellness Perform Safe & O/A hay). Now its time to move on and learn about the dogs. I recently rescued an emaciated GSD pup that was dumped out here nearby my house. Her arrival has put me up to 3 dogs; I also have 3 horses, a cat and 3 kids so I need the most cost effective and yet the best balanced diet I can find for my guys. I was feeding my 2 adult dogs Natural Balance but the price went up a good bit and it just wasnt worth it anymore so I switched to Canidae but their gas was TERRIBLE on this food and they generally are not gassy dogs! Im currently in the process of switching them over to Nutro but Im not wanting to stay there....but it was a good mediocre food to get the puppy up to better quality and get everyone on the same brand food. I started the puppy off on puppy chow because I didnt want to shock her system with not getting anything to getting a high quality food because I knew that could cause her more issues than it was worth. She is on her way up on quality and once she in completely on this and settled Im going to move her and the other 2 onto the diet that will stick but thats where Im looking for help. I was looking into feeding raw or a 50/50 raw and kibble based diet but Im really having a hard time find hard facts on amounts and quality of such a diet. Mainly everything Im finding is either very vague or someones opinion. Can anyone point me in the right direction?? The only site that I have found thats been any help has been the dog food adviser. Im liking the 4health dry food as maybe a starting point and Ive looked at the Primal Raw tubes as kind of an added thing but Im not really sure just yet.....
    LILY-13yr APHA/PtHA mare**LUKE-11yr Rescue Haflinger gelding (being leased out)**ANNIE-7yr AQHA mare



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr. 14, 2001
    Location
    Fort Collins, CO
    Posts
    16,386

    Default

    As far as I know, there's really very little out there about feeding kibble and raw together. There is some belief that they should not be fed at the same meal.

    What's worked very well for me is a very high quality kibble. I feed my dogs Orijen. It's quite costly, but they do excellent on it. I'd say it's one of the best quality dog foods available, period.

    I've looking into raw several times, and the prepackaged raw is just out of this world expensive for my two 70 lb dogs and I cannot make the cost work for me (and I'm willing to drop quite a bit of money feeding my dogs!) If you have little dogs, I can see how it could be a valid option. If you have big dogs, you've got to be wealthy to feed a prepacked raw. If I fed Primal to my dogs, it would be in the $30-$40 PER DAY ballpark. Feeding raw is a lot less expensive if you can source your raw meat from a local butcher or hunter, or if you raise your own.

    Also, looking at the Primal site, it looks like the tubes are organ meat and bone. If you feed those + kibble, that won't really work. The tubes are meant as a supplement to muscle meat. Just feeding those + a complete diet will throw off the whole thing. If you can source muscle meat locally, you can add the tubes for a complete raw diet.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep. 4, 2012
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    112

    Default

    Ok awesome info! Thank you!! I have a Brittany Spaniel (40lbs), Boxer/Pit/Vizsla (65lbs) and a GSD puppy who was 22lbs at 11 weeks and was still skinny at that time!! I also just read something about 4Health and how dogs are bloating on it and one owner soaked the food and the kibbles got 4 times their original size!! YIKES!!! Im not sure I will feed that one either. I really wish the dog food prices wouldnt have gone up so darn much!! Its used to be affordable to feed a good quality food and now it seems just way to expensive for a multiple dog house hold.
    Last edited by BlueEyedPaints; Apr. 15, 2013 at 04:40 PM. Reason: spelling error
    LILY-13yr APHA/PtHA mare**LUKE-11yr Rescue Haflinger gelding (being leased out)**ANNIE-7yr AQHA mare



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr. 14, 2001
    Location
    Fort Collins, CO
    Posts
    16,386

    Default

    You're talking about doing a prepackaged raw, though, which is CRAZY expensive? Unless you're just planning on using the raw as an occasional treat, your costs from feeding that part time are going to be astronomical for the dogs you have.

    If you can find a local raw meat source--a butcher, or a hunter, or someone who raises food animals--raw can be doable on a budget. Otherwise, it's just not. Not with big dogs.

    How much are you looking to spend a month? That's probably a good place to start.

    Also remember to look at the calorie count when comparing kibbles. They're ALL over the place and can make an expensive food and an inexpensive food about the same, really, when you're looking at how much you have to feed per day. We just had a thread looking at Taste of the Wild, which is quite low in calories. I was a little floored to find I'd have to feed 5 1/2 cups a day for each of my dogs to hit their calorie requirements. They currently get 4 cups a day of the Orijen. TotW is less expensive than Orijen, but feeding an additional 3 cups a day, total, makes that price difference a lot smaller.

    Websites like chewy.com or petfooddirect.com are useful for checking pricing. Calorie counts are on the food producer's website. I have a spreadsheet with a ton of nutritional data on a few hundred premium kibbles--send me your email if you'd like to see it. It's out of date now, and there are probably things that have changed, but it's a good starting point.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug. 26, 2012
    Posts
    157

    Default

    I've been very happy with Bil-Jac kibble for my dogs that could eat it (lots of allergy and gas problems). Have either of you investigated it?



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2006
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    11,372

    Default

    I have had my guys (90-95lbs, very active) on California Natural Herring & Sweet Potato since Christmas. http://www.californianaturalpet.com/products/1201

    I like it but it stinks to high heaven. LOL

    I switched to that on the advice of my veterinarian as we were moving off of Z/D and trying to keep an eye out for food allergies. It's pricey but I like it. My dogs get 2C BID.

    I haven't done enough research to give you much info, but I think that the raw diet is kind of an all or nothing proposition if you're going to do it right. If you're not doing the whole program AND aren't feeding sufficient amounts of the dry kibble then you may end up with nutrient imbalances and deficiencies.
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr. 14, 2001
    Location
    Fort Collins, CO
    Posts
    16,386

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by littlebaypony View Post
    I've been very happy with Bil-Jac kibble for my dogs that could eat it (lots of allergy and gas problems). Have either of you investigated it?
    Bil-Jac kibble? This stuff?

    That's a lower quality kibble that doesn't check any of the boxes I want when I'm looking for something to feed my dogs. Its got by-products as the second and fourth ingredient, corn as the third ingredient, and it's too low in protein for your average dog (never mind one that's active.) They don't seem to publish their calorie count, so no comment there, but my guess would be that it's low there as well. If it works for you, that's wonderful, but it's not what I look for in a food at all.

    For comparison, here's what I do feed my dogs:

    Orijen Six Fish

    Orijen Regional Red

    Quote Originally Posted by BuddyRoo View Post
    I have had my guys (90-95lbs, very active) on California Natural Herring & Sweet Potato since Christmas. http://www.californianaturalpet.com/products/1201
    I used CalNat for my old allergy dog and she did beautifully on it for most of her life They always did great foods for critters with sensitivities and I love that they don't put a lot of extra stuff in there. I'm still bummed out that Proctor and Gamble bought out Natura Pet, though. I loved their entire lineup and fed it exclusively for probably 15 years, only switching when I noticed a change in the food about 6 months after the ownership change.

    If you ever want to move away from the P&G products, you might also have luck with the Acana Singles (although they don't have a fish formula in the singles lineup.) There is an Acana fish formula and an Orijen version if you ever need to try a different fish based food. I've really been happy with this particular manufacturer.

    Another option could be the Salmon Pinnacle.

    Not saying you should switch if the Cal Nat is working for you, but options are always good to have, just in case! (You do know they just had a recall, right?)


    1 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2006
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    11,372

    Default

    Thanks Simkie. After months of loose stools and issues, I'm terrified to change anything at this point! LOL I've had almost 6 weeks of normalcy.

    My fear is that when we move overseas, I'm going to have to switch foods and have no idea what is going to be available to me. If we end up in Mozambique like we hope, I definitely can't fly over a 40lb bag of CalNat every two weeks!
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr. 14, 2001
    Location
    Fort Collins, CO
    Posts
    16,386

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BuddyRoo View Post
    Thanks Simkie. After months of loose stools and issues, I'm terrified to change anything at this point! LOL I've had almost 6 weeks of normalcy.
    Good lord, I'd nearly forgotten all of your canine poop problems! So glad to hear things are going WELL for a change



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep. 4, 2012
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    112

    Default

    To be honest what I would really love to feed is Merrick again. I LOVE that food. But I honestly cant justify spending $53 on a 30lb bag of food when I have 3 medium/large dogs and will go through it in less than a month. I used to pay $43 for a larger bag not to long ago.
    LILY-13yr APHA/PtHA mare**LUKE-11yr Rescue Haflinger gelding (being leased out)**ANNIE-7yr AQHA mare



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov. 24, 2006
    Posts
    1,143

    Default

    I read on a GSD forum about someone posting the 4Health bloat thing, they debunked it. I had fed Blue Buffalo, loved it- got way too expensive- went to TOTW, realllllly loved it but decided to try one bag of 4 Health Grain free whitefish and potato (my GSD does best on grain free and fish protein). I just threw away about half a bowl of it that had been soaked (Our Chi mix is fussy and pretty much just eats to survive lol and it was NOT 4 times the original kibble size, twice maybe, and that was overnight soaking too). But it's $15 less for the 30lb bag, I can't *not* try it! If it doesn't work out, I will go back to the TOTW.
    Kerri



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr. 14, 2001
    Location
    Fort Collins, CO
    Posts
    16,386

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BlueEyedPaints View Post
    To be honest what I would really love to feed is Merrick again. I LOVE that food. But I honestly cant justify spending $53 on a 30lb bag of food when I have 3 medium/large dogs and will go through it in less than a month. I used to pay $43 for a larger bag not to long ago.
    Just doing some air math here...you'd like to spend $150/month on dog food? Is that the right ballpark? My dogs go through a 7 kg bag of Orijen in about two weeks, so I'm guessing you need 3 ish bags a month for your crew? Maybe four?

    I don't have a lot of experience with dog food at that price point, but I've seen a lot of people post about 4Health, Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul and Taste of the Wild, which all seem to be in the right ballpark. I'd compare calorie count and price and see what you get.

    Remember that you've got to watch the calcium levels for the puppy. Anything over 1.8% is TOO HIGH, lower is better.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2006
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    11,372

    Default

    FWIW, my dogs are in the 90lb range (2) and each get 2C BID and I go through one large bag (35 or 40lb) in about 2 weeks @ about $47/bag I think. I usually am buying something else when I'm there so it might be +/- 5 bucks.

    That's the CalNat.
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep. 4, 2012
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    112

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Simkie View Post
    Just doing some air math here...you'd like to spend $150/month on dog food? Is that the right ballpark? My dogs go through a 7 kg bag of Orijen in about two weeks, so I'm guessing you need 3 ish bags a month for your crew? Maybe four?

    I don't have a lot of experience with dog food at that price point, but I've seen a lot of people post about 4Health, Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul and Taste of the Wild, which all seem to be in the right ballpark. I'd compare calorie count and price and see what you get.

    Remember that you've got to watch the calcium levels for the puppy. Anything over 1.8% is TOO HIGH, lower is better.
    Well right now Im buying Nutro because its at a better price point for me but I worked in pet stores for many years and know the more holistic diet is better in the end and understand the whole quality thing and long before I had kids I would spend whatever needed to be spent to buy pet food and they always had the best. Now I have 3 kids and the quality of the dog food has had to slide back some because its just not affordable anymore. My husband has a good job but I dont work because of our kids and spending nearly $60 a bag when I would need 3 bags a month is just alot.....I tend to compare it to my horse feed where I spend $25 on 50lbs but I can only get 30lbs of Dog Chow for that price when it comes to dog food and it just blows my mind! I was trying to see if there was a way to feed something better than Im feeding without increasing the price to much if any. But Im guessing not. I read something about how feeding raw was cheaper than kibble which started my researching but I guess that person had a personal source of meat or something
    LILY-13yr APHA/PtHA mare**LUKE-11yr Rescue Haflinger gelding (being leased out)**ANNIE-7yr AQHA mare



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar. 11, 2005
    Location
    CO
    Posts
    4,878

    Default

    My old man usually eats Innova, but right now both he and my yearling GSD/ACD are on Fromm (large dog gold and large senior dog gold). They both weigh in the 50-55 pound range. Old man gets 2 1/2 cups, Youngster gets 3 cups (he runs with me, usually 4.5-5 miles...sometimes more).

    I've been extremely pleased with this food. It's a little pricey, but the large bag gets the young dog through about 2 months.
    "IT'S NOT THE MOUNTAIN WE CONQUER, BUT OURSELVES." SIR EDMUND HILLARYMember of the "Someone Special To Me Serves In The Military" Clique



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr. 21, 2008
    Location
    Somewhere in Texas YEEHAW!
    Posts
    850

    Default

    Have you looked into getting the Natural Balance from another source? I get it at the local feed store for almost $10 a bag less than at Petco. It could really make a difference to shop around a bit. I've been really happy with the NB and their ingredients.

    QUOTE=Kenike;6943115]My old man usually eats Innova, but right now both he and my yearling GSD/ACD are on Fromm (large dog gold and large senior dog gold). They both weigh in the 50-55 pound range. Old man gets 2 1/2 cups, Youngster gets 3 cups (he runs with me, usually 4.5-5 miles...sometimes more).

    I've been extremely pleased with this food. It's a little pricey, but the large bag gets the young dog through about 2 months.[/QUOTE]

    Might want to check on the Innova, I was just in Petsmart a couple days ago and all the Innova dog AND cat food had been pulled from the shelves due to a recall :-(
    OTTB CONNECT
    FB group for all things related to non racing Thoroughbreds.. Click here to join ~~~> OTTB CONNECT



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Sep. 4, 2012
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    112

    Default

    I used to feed NB to my guys right before Canidae and I was getting it at a pet store and not Petco and was paying $55 or so per bag....I cant remember exactly.
    LILY-13yr APHA/PtHA mare**LUKE-11yr Rescue Haflinger gelding (being leased out)**ANNIE-7yr AQHA mare



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar. 19, 2013
    Location
    Northern Canada
    Posts
    89

    Default

    I've got similar issues and have been desperately trying to get my overweight, sensitive to everything, allergic to chicken Chocolate lab. After switching through EVERYTHING (from vet feeds, Acnana, Royal Cain, Origin, Blue Buffalo and a few variations of RAW etc) I've actually settled on the Nurto. Not for my personal preference, and the money thing isn't an issue for me, but because my dog seems to thrive on it. His gas is down to next too nil, his skin has cleared up, coat looks great, less itchy and general overall improvement.

    I was rather impressed so i switched my senior brittney over to the large breed senior (He's actually a Brit x) and have seen a lot of improvement in his coat, gas and general itchiness as well.

    I do (and always have) supplemented them both with omega's, glucosamine and chondroitin. But other than that, I've been very very happy with the Nurto. The price is just a bonus.



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Sep. 4, 2012
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    112

    Default

    Thats good to hear about Nutro....maybe I will just stick with it. Maybe I will get a holistic can food to add to it to make me feel better. lol I generally float their food in water before I give it to them and only sometimes do I add can to it. My puppy does get can though always.
    LILY-13yr APHA/PtHA mare**LUKE-11yr Rescue Haflinger gelding (being leased out)**ANNIE-7yr AQHA mare



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Oct. 12, 2001
    Location
    Center of the Universe
    Posts
    6,901

    Default

    A lot of people feed raw and kibble. And don't have any problems with it- most of the stories about how you shouldn't feed raw and kibble seem to be based on nothing but myths. I know a very experienced breeder/rescue fosterer who has, for decades, to many dogs, fed a grain-free kibble in the morning, and a home-assembled, hopefully balanced, raw diet at night; since many of her dogs have been seen whizzing around doing agility and flyball as teenagers it certainly doesn't seem to have done the dogs any harm. I personally feed commercial raw and kibble together in the same meal, fairly often. I think choosing to supplement a kibble diet with raw improves the diet in many ways. I don't like to feed just plain kibble in any meal, due to the risk of bloat- adding chunks of wet meat to kibble was proven to cut the risk of bloat way down. Bloat is a major killer of dogs.

    Another easy, cheap way to improve your dog's health is to add table scraps to kibble. Of course you have to carefully select your scraps- no onions, for example. And you have to cut back on the amount of kibble to avoid fattening up your dog.

    Most of the doggy nutritionists recommend you rotate brands and flavors of dog food. It's not a good idea to just select one brand and go with it forevermore. Or you can pick one kibble, and rotate through various brands of canned food as toppers to reduce the risk of bloat and improve the variety in the diet.

    The idea that one dry, preserved commercial dog food contains all of the nutrients your dog needs, for life, is a ludicrous concept. We know very little about nutrition. However, most studies suggest that the healthiest diets are based on offering a variety of fresh, species-appropriate foods. Dogs are carnivores, so a diet based on meats plus some small amounts of a wide variety of vegetables and fruits is probably the best diet.



Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 7
    Last Post: Sep. 3, 2012, 02:16 PM
  2. Detox diet for horses/forage only diet
    By Beethoven in forum Horse Care
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: Sep. 5, 2011, 09:04 AM
  3. Replies: 12
    Last Post: Feb. 15, 2011, 11:54 AM
  4. Add oil to diet?
    By AnotherRound in forum Horse Care
    Replies: 30
    Last Post: Aug. 26, 2010, 11:17 PM
  5. Diet help, balancing an alfalfa only diet?
    By Ember in forum Horse Care
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: Mar. 31, 2010, 08:36 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •