Dog Food

DixieGirl

Cathlete
For those of you who have dogs, what kind of food do you feed them? It's been about 4 years since we lost our labrador retriever and we are finally getting another puppy in a couple weeks. Seems I've heard a lot about dangerous dog food in recent years. We fed our Labs Purina Pro Plan but I even heard something negative about Purina not long ago.

Thanks,
Tracy
 

lrusso

Cathlete
I would steer clear of the grocery store foods and vet food and get a natural food from a Pet store. Purina is one of the worst and so is Science Diet. I have cats at the moment so I am not sure of the best kinds for dogs. I do like Wellness. I would do my research, quality food is one of the most important things you can do for your dogs health. Also whatever you do, do not over-vaccinate, if your vet doesn't agree, find another vet!
 

Stacy

Cathlete
You'll hear many different answers to your question. We've fed our dog NutroMax dry dog food brand for 12 years now and they're both as healthy as they can be and have never had any digestive problems. All dogs are different though.
 

spyrosmom

Cathlete
Vlad eats Nature's Recipe Salmon, Sweet Potato, and Pumpkin dry food. He used to eat Purina Dog Chow, but he has itchy skin, and the food switch cleared it up nicely. Took probably 2 months to really start to see the improvement, but now no more itchies. He used to have bald spots on his front elbows, and those grew back in, too. Took a while, but they did. He's a shepherd/rot mix.

Nan
 

fox2star

Cathlete
You'll hear many different answers to your question.
This is so true. This is a hot topic with anyone with pets these days. With all the scare about anything from China etc.

I have been feeding 1/2 kibble and 1/2 homemade food, and actually just started on 100% homemade with a vitamin supplement mix that I also make myself. Lots of time to do this, but I have one dog with bladder stone history so he can't have commercial food, and I hate the prescription food they give you at the vets. I figure if I am doing it for one, I should do it for both. He has been good for 3 years now, hope that this keeps working..
 

jnka825

Cathlete
We feed my boxer Health Extension. He is one years old. For a few months he would have loose stools on and off. He also seemed a little underweight. With health extension he is the perfect weight for his breed and no more loose stools. His coat is shiny and soft, still like a puppy. You do have to buy it at a pet store because the supermarket doesn't sell it.

Hope that helps.
 

tlc93

Cathlete
I agree with Stacy......all dogs are different. What works for one may not work for another. Just like people! I also prefer the Wellness brand that you get in a pet store. There must be something that smells funny in it though because our little dog turns her nose up at it, while the boxer mix digs right in. So we tend to mix different brands together, trying to make everyone happy.

It can be confusing as well as overwhelming to find the best food. Maybe buy the smaller bags until you find what works. Keep in mind the specifics of your needs.....puppy, older dog, overweight, shiny coat, dry skin, active breed etc. Good luck!
 

PhyllisG

Cathlete
Congratulations on your new puppy. I cook for my dogs. Rice, veggies, a protein--chicken, meat whatever all go into a pressure cooker and a weeks worth of food is cooked and stored in the freezer and fridge.
Pet food is a pet peeve of mine. I don't trust or like any of it--grocery, gourmet all natural whatever. It is all over processed and sold at a high mark up. I mentioned this before. A vet friend of ours was here visiting from India. He could not believe it when I dragged out the bag of kibble. When he managed to stop laughing he asked me how I had ever convinced my dogs to eat it. I had lived in India for years and there was no pet food. The dogs ate homecooked food. So I went back to doing that. I am tired of hearing about recalled pet foods and there were plenty of the hi end ones that were recalled also. I also cannot believe that any living creature wants to eat the same dry kibble day after day for years. I could rant on but I will stop here.
 

DixieGirl

Cathlete
Thanks for all the replies! Y'all have given me a lot to research :D

We are getting a Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier, very excited!
 

firemedic

Cathlete
I just saw one for the first time at my vet and what a beautiful dog. As an adult, I could not believe how soft the coat still was. Nice size too, not to small or too big. I think no matter what, you'll do right by your new puppy so just enjoy it while it lasts. Best of luck!!!
 

fit44

Cathlete
Can you ask the breeder for food suggestions? If you can't, maybe join a breed specific forum to ask for food suggestions.
Labs can be prone to orthopedic problems, and you need to feed a kibble with the proper caloric & calcium amounts. You want to grow a large breed slow, and too many calories and too much calcium can cause unusual growth spurts.
I can't remember the calcium ratios you need to look for because I raised my large breeds on raw food.


Also, please do no spay/neuter until your pup's growth plates close. Early spay and neutering can create serious long term health problems (orthopedic, bone cancer, adrenal disease). Sex hormones close growth plates on a large breed somewhere between year 1-2. Most mastiff breeders will ask puppy owners not to spay/neuter before the age of two. Boxer breeders generally wait until 18 months of age.
Your vet will try to talk you out of it, but I'm telling you, do your research!

Health Issues Linked to Spaying and Neutering Dogs

http://www.naiaonline.org/pdfs/LongTermHealthEffectsOfSpayNeuterInDogs.pdf

Save Our Dogs » AVMA’s advisory boards oppose mandatory spay/neuter

Dr Becker states that veterinary schools do not teach alternative sterilization methods in the US, but this is changing. My vet told me that our local Veterinary University teaching school are teaching new students partial spays, leaving ovaries intact.:) This is great news, but it will be years before this is mainstream.
 
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firemedic

Cathlete
Can you ask the breeder for food suggestions? If you can't, maybe join a breed specific forum to ask for food suggestions.
Labs can be prone to orthopedic problems, and you need to feed a kibble with the proper caloric & calcium amounts. You want to grow a large breed slow, and too many calories and too much calcium can cause unusual growth spurts.
I can't remember the calcium ratios you need to look for because I raised my large breeds on raw food.


Also, please do no spay/neuter until your pup's growth plates close. Early spay and neutering can create serious long term health problems (orthopedic, bone cancer, adrenal disease). Sex hormones close growth plates on a large breed somewhere between year 1-2. Most mastiff breeders will ask puppy owners not to spay/neuter before the age of two. Boxer breeders generally wait until 18 months of age.
Your vet will try to talk you out of it, but I'm telling you, do your research!

Health Issues Linked to Spaying and Neutering Dogs

http://www.naiaonline.org/pdfs/LongTermHealthEffectsOfSpayNeuterInDogs.pdf

Save Our Dogs » AVMA’s advisory boards oppose mandatory spay/neuter

Dr Becker states that veterinary schools do not teach alternative sterilization methods in the US, but this is changing. My vet told me that our local Veterinary University teaching school are teaching new students partial spays, leaving ovaries intact.:) This is great news, but it will be years before this is mainstream.
I agree with this. I wish when I got my first dog 14yrs ago I had known about it. My vet spayed my dog at 5 months old and now she has to take a hormone pill (we call it the pee pee pill) because she started leaking pee all the time. Now she has to take 2 pills a week and this started about 4 yrs ago or so. I waited longer when I got my other 2 dogs (about 1 yrs old) and so far so good. I also don't give my dog the booster shots every year either. I read about how dangerous and they side affects they can have. Come to find out, 1 of my dogs is allergic to them and gets really bad rashes that lasts for about 2 months after. They still get rabies shots, but now that they are older, they don't need boosters every year.
 
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fit44

Cathlete
I agree with this. I wish when I got my first dog 14yrs ago I had known about it. My vet spayed my dog at 5 months old and now she had to take a hormone pill (we call it the pee pee pill) because she started leaking pee all the time. Now she has to take 2 pills a week and this started about 4 yrs ago or so. I waited longer when I got my other 2 dogs (about 1 yrs old) and so far so good. I also don't give my dog the booster shots every year either. I read about how dangerous and they side affects they can have. Come to find out, 1 of my dogs is allergic to them and gets really bad rashes that lasts for about 2 months after. They still get rabies shots, but now that they are older, they don't need boosters every year.
My sister neutered her corgi at 4 months old, and one of his growth plates grew too long. He needed surgery at 10 months old, and now walks with a limp and turned out foot.

I'm not saying everyone should keep an intact animal. Keeping your animal intact involves great responsibility. My dogs are never left in our yard unattended, and when my female was in heat, I took her out on leash in my fenced yard.

I love this quote from Dr. Becker's article-
"Irresponsible people need to have sterilized pets. No one’s going to argue that point. Unfortunately, spaying and neutering responsible people’s pets doesn’t make irresponsible people any more responsible. They remain the root cause of the overpopulation crisis in this country."


Hopefully, in the near future, all veterinarians will know how to sterilize without de-sexing.
When I spayed my female two years ago(@age 2), I called around looking for a vet who would agree to leave at least one ovary intact, and I couldn't find one. I called the my local University vet school, and at the time, they did not offer it. Two years later, they are teaching the procedure!:cool:
 

murfmom

Cathlete
We feed our lab/border collie mix Nature's Domain Grain Free Salmon and Sweet Potato from Costco, and at 2.5 years old, he's very healthy and energetic (runs with DH, who does half marathons). We went grain-free because when we first got him, and he was eating the Science Diet from the shelter, he had a serious problem with flatulence. The food switch took care of it.

As for neutering, if you get a shelter dog, you really don't have a choice. They won't let you take them home until they've had their procedure. I'll have to watch for problems as he gets older. Is this an issue with males as well as females?
 

fit44

Cathlete
We feed our lab/border collie mix Nature's Domain Grain Free Salmon and Sweet Potato from Costco, and at 2.5 years old, he's very healthy and energetic (runs with DH, who does half marathons). We went grain-free because when we first got him, and he was eating the Science Diet from the shelter, he had a serious problem with flatulence. The food switch took care of it.

As for neutering, if you get a shelter dog, you really don't have a choice. They won't let you take them home until they've had their procedure. I'll have to watch for problems as he gets older. Is this an issue with males as well as females?


Yes.
 

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