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What do you all feed your Dogs?


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Just doing a little research on what everyone feeds their dogs and why did you pick that food? What do you know about Dog food?

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There have been posts on this in the past...you could certainly search those for more info....

But, to answer your question I feed Nutrisource because of the ingredients. It's good quality food which is also made in MN which I like.

BTW....I would also feed Eaglepack if I was looking for a different food.

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We feed Pro Plan on both of our dogs.

Switched to it on my previous dog a 5 year old shorthair that went hypoglycemic during a hunt. Seizures the whole works. The vet recommended Pro Plan and one or two other brands as better choices for a hard running dog that was really burning up the calories. Unfortunately she had locked up previously (no seizures)and the vets when I discussed it with them thought it might be dehydration. Scary experience as I carried her out of the field after the seizures. really learned the value of a good food versus "cheapin out".

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Nutrisource here too..."large breed puppy" as of now (yellow lab, 8 months). I too was sold after comparing the ingredients list w/ other comparable brands/formulations.

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We feed Country Vet - never heard of it until we got our last pup - it's what that breeder feeds. Both dogs really like it and everything seems to come out good if ya know what I mean. They both also seem to maintain weight with it in the offseason.

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I feed the kibble form of Mushers' Meal. It's a little known brand that is reasonably priced and my dogs do extremely well with it. High fat and protein.

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I use Science Diet. Last two dogs did well on it and my new little guy seems to be doing well also. grin.gif

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I feed Diamond. It has all the high end ingredients at a much lower price.

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Pro-plan large breed for me (was a Diamond guy for years). I do think all the top brands have a good nutrient formula and quality ingredients. Some formulas may work better for one dog vs. another. The main reason I use Pro-plan is I love to pay that price! grin.gifgrin.gif No seriously, the reason is I've only heard positive things about it and it seems more breeders recommend it by far compared to other brands. Unless there's something going on behind the scenes that I am unaware of, there must be a good reason for it.

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Pro plan performance year round. Bigger rations in fall/winter smaller rations in spring/summer. Dog looks great right now. Good muscle tone, has some ribs showing and looks like she could run 100 mph. Starting to blow her coat right now too.

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The Reason I ask is I am actually a petfood Fanatic. It just drives me crazy that some people spend a lot on their dogs. Best training they can, thousands on a o/u shotgun and then feed a second rate food. There is a huge difference in quaility of foods. There are many foods out there that are marketed heavily to get people to buy. Stating on the bag that it is premium food. Bottom line is you really do have to look at ingredients when choosing a food. There is No perfect food for every dog since just like people they like different foods better than others. However they also are what they eat. Feed them crap and that is what you get for the health of your dog. Good foods not only give them energy, strong bones and muscles along with full coats. But actually can prevent Cancer which in turn mean they may live longer. Another aspect to food is some people buy for Price. When actually food "A" may cost a little more than food "B". But when you get to feed less it ends up costing the same and in some cases actually less than the cheaper food. And what most people agree on less crap out the other end. I have put together a couple documents comparing foods and how to rate your own food. Bottom line you want to find foods with Chicken Meal, Lamb Meal, Salmon meal etc as #1 ingredient not grain. Many grains used are there as a filler and offer no nutritional value. Another ingredient to look out of is By-Products especially vague "Animal-by products" What is your pet getting here? Beaks, feet, hoofs or organs? There are a few foods that really get me going. "Science Diet, Iams, Many of the Purina foods" These are really bad choices if you really look closely. Just take a look next time you purchase your food!!

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While I respect your opinions, Some of the foods you deem as bad, are generally looked upon as high quality foods, that many people have had sucess raising their dogs on for years. I for one am on my third dog on Science Diet and have always had healthy happy dogs with very few health problems. Also have family members in the Vet. Field and they all recommend it hands down. Am curious to what you feel are "Good Choices".

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i can honestly say that i don't know that much about dog food. I try to feed the best i can afford. I used to feed a food from walmart called Maximum Nutrition. It was fairly cheap and my lab was healthy till the age of 14. I have since switched to Diamond sport dog with my other dogs. It is reasonably priced and seems to fill him up and give energy.

I had always heard/thought maybe science diet was best but on a retriever training site 95% of the breeders/trainers and some vets said it was junk. I think each dog is a bit different and you may have to switch foods to find which one really has the most positive affect on YOUR dog.

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Even though I mentioned Science Diet It isn't the worst food available by no means. With that Said, why not feed better food. You really want to find something with 2 protein sources Example, Chicken meal, Chicken than some sort of grain. Chicken Meal, lamb meal, or Salmon meal should be the first ingredient. Chicken Meal is pure protein after cooking without weighing Water. Chicken is water included which means you are paying for Water. Some better foods would be Eagle Pack, Nutro Products, Royal Canin, Nutrisource, Pro Plan, Natures Balance There are many more. Email me and I can send you a document of how to score foods. This was developed by a Vetinarian who specializes in nutrition. I also have a work sheet that I recieved from my retriever group. I can send you. My purpose here is to share some of the things I have learned about food and hopefully inform some that really never gave it much thought. Just remember with the right advertising and incentives you could sell even Ice to Eskimos.

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Science diet on the rating sheet I have actually scores a F. It is made with more grain for protein than actual meat. Soy beans are used. Soy in Dog food is not a good choice.

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Science diet on the rating sheet I have actually scores a F. It is made with more grain for protein than actual meat. Soy beans are used. Soy in Dog food is not a good choice.

I had a girlfriend who worked for a vet and told me basically the same thing, that Science Diet is a real low grade food if you buy it from a normal store, unless you are buying it from a vet in a prescription formula but then the price is really high.

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I was recently informed by one of the top breeders in the nation, "Goldberry Lines", whom also worked as the top nutritionist for Purina and quit because they would not listen to him because he cared more for the animals that they were feeding than the money, that when optimal performance is important you need to look for brands other than Science Diet, Purina, Pro Plan etc. for the simple fact that if you want your dog to maintain a healthy diet you need to find a food that uses something other than RUST as there number one ingredient for protein. He has suggested to me that NOBLE is a great food, it comes from Canada but is sold in numerous locations in the States. My personal opinion, I had my dog on Pro Plan and switched to Noble and have had nothing but good things to say about it as far as healt and body tone goes. I was told by him that alot of these main stream "cheaper" foods claim that chicken is their number one ingredient, when in fact chicken once turned into "meal" is actually 90% water or more. Just my 2 sense, take it for what its worth.

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Also if you are looking for some good reading when it comes to dog food and nutrition, try looking up Optimal Performance- "The Role of Dietary Trace Minerals in Achieving Breeder's Nirvana"- an editorial by Ron Rompala and Gail Kuhlman...both whom have PhDs', PASs' and DACANs' ...basically describes the importance of proper nutrition in breeding and performance breeds..it was wrote in the winter of 96' in the Labrador Quarterly...very good reading!!!

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If this is the Goldberry I'm thinking of in Eagle Lake, I have talked to him and was very enlightened. If you know him well, give hime this website to share his knowledge. The stuff they put in dog food is despicable. Know human carcinogens are perfectly acceptable to our furry friends. Cooling an animal carcass and then dipping it in hot water to extract the gel (you've all seen that gel in your left over meat in the fridge) to get a higher protein content that is totally unassumable by dogs. We deserve better for our friends.

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I feed my dogs Science Diet Lamb and Rice Formula. I don't have a bag of adult food but I looked on the puppy food I have and the #1 ingredient is lamb meal. I have asked our vets about that food and they said it was a good choice. They also told me to suppliment with some real food. My dogs split a can of green beans and/or some tuna mixed in with their dog food every once in a while. They will also get an egg from time to time. The one vet in particular advocated real food such as the green beans, tuna/fish, raw eggs etc. He said stay away from "white carbs" but give them some meats and veggies.

When we are hunting I buy a tube of Nature's Balance. It looks like summer sausage. I suppliment their diet with that depending on how hard they are working. The dogs love it

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DRH, Can you post your sheet? Or at least what foods score an A on the list? Like I said have used the Science Diet for years, but if their is stuff better for my dog I'm all for change for the benefit of my dog. grin.gif

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I will take a stab a post what I assume DRH is talking about. I don't know the details of who made this test, so I don't know if there is any agenda behind it (I don't know enough about the questions to be able to tell). With that being said:

How to grade your dog's food:

Start with a grade of 100:

1) For every listing of "by-product", subtract 10 points

2) For every non-specific animal source ("meat" or "poultry", meat, meal or fat) reference, subtract 10 points

3) If the food contains BHA, BHT, or ethoxyquin, subtract 10 points

4) For every grain "mill run" or non-specific grain source, subtract 5 points

5) If the same grain ingredient is used 2 or more times in the first five ingredients (i.e. "ground brown rice", "brewer’s rice", "rice flour" are all the same grain), subtract 5 points

6) If the protein sources are not meat meal and there are less than 2 meats in the top 3 ingredients, subtract 3 points

7) If it contains any artificial colorants, subtract 3 points

8 ) If it contains ground corn or whole grain corn, subtract 3 points

9) If corn is listed in the top 5 ingredients, subtract 2 more points

10) If the food contains any animal fat other than fish oil, subtract 2 points

11) If lamb is the only animal protein source (unless your dog is allergic to other protein sources), subtract 2 points

12) If it contains soy or soybeans, subtract 2 points

13) If it contains wheat (unless you know that your dog is not allergic to wheat), subtract 2 points

14) If it contains beef (unless you know that your dog is not allergic to beef), subtract 1 point

15) If it contains salt, subtract 1 point

Extra Credit:

1) If any of the meat sources are organic, add 5 points

2) If the food is endorsed by any major breed group or nutritionist, add 5 points

3) If the food is baked not extruded, add 5 points

4) If the food contains probiotics, add 3 points

5) If the food contains fruit, add 3 points

6) If the food contains vegetables (NOT corn or other grains), add 3 points

7) If the animal sources are hormone-free and antibiotic-free, add 2 points

8 ) If the food contains barley, add 2 points

9) If the food contains flax seed oil (not just the seeds), add 2 points

10) If the food contains oats or oatmeal, add 1 point

11) If the food contains sunflower oil, add 1 point

12) For every different specific animal protein source (other than the first one; count "chicken" and "chicken meal" as only one protein source, but "chicken" and "" as 2 different sources), add 1 point

13) If it contains glucosamine and chondroitin, add 1 point

14) If the vegetables have been tested for pesticides and are pesticide-free, add 1 point

94-100+ = A 86-93 = B 78-85 = C 70-77 = D <70 = F

Dog Food scores:

Alpo Prime Cuts / Score 81 C

Artemis Large/Medium Breed Puppy / Score 114 A+

Authority Harvest Baked / Score 116 A+

Authority Harvest Baked Less Active / Score 93 B

Beowulf Back to Basics / Score 101 A+

Bil-Jac Select / Score 68 F

Blackwood 3000 Lamb and Rice / Score 83 C

Blue Buffalo Chicken and Rice / Score 106 A+

Burns Chicken and Brown Rice / Score 107 A+

Canidae / Score 112 A+

Chicken Soup Senior / Score 115 A+

Diamond Maintenance / Score 64 F

Diamond Lamb Meal & Rice / Score 92 B

Diamond Large Breed 60+ Formula / Score 99 A

Diamond Performance / Score 85 C

Dick Van Patten's Natural Balance Ultra Premium / Score 122 A+

Dick Van Patten's Natural Balance Venison and Brown Rice / Score 106 A+

Dick Van Patten's Duck and Potato / Score 106 A+

EaglePack Holistic / Score 102 A+

Eukanuba Adult / Score 81 C

Eukanuba Puppy / Score 79 C

Flint River Senior / Score 101 A+

Foundations / Score 106 A+

Hund-n-Flocken Adult Dog (lamb) by Solid Gold / Score 93 B

Iams Lamb Meal & Rice Formula Premium / Score 73 D

Innova Dog / Score 114 A+

Innova Evo / Score 114 A+

Innova Large Breed Puppy / Score 122 A+

Kirkland Signature Chicken, Rice, and Vegetables / Score 110 A+

Member's Mark Chicken and Rice / Score 84 C

Merrick Wilderness Blend / Score 127 A+

Nature's Recipe / Score 100 A

Nature's Recipe Healthy Skin Venison and Rice / Score 116 A+

Nature's Variety Raw Instinct / Score 122 A+

Nutra Nuggets Super Premium Lamb Meal and Rice / Score 81 C

Nutrience Junior Medium Breed Puppy / Score 101 A+

Nutrisource Lamb and Rice / Score 87 B

Nutro Max Adult / Score 93 B

Nutro Natural Choice Lamb and Rice / Score 98 A

Nutro Natural Choice Large Breed Puppy / Score 87 B

Nutro Natural Choice Puppy Wheat Free / Score 86 B

Nutro Natural Choice Senior / Score 95 A

Nutro Ultra Adult / Score 104 A+

Pet Gold Adult with Lamb & Rice / Score 23 F

Premium Edge Chicken, Rice and Vegetables Adult Dry / Score 109 A+

Pro Nature Puppy / Score 80 C

Pro Plan Sensitive Stomach / Score 94 A

Purina Beneful / Score 17 F

Purina Dog / Score 62 F

Purina Come-n-Get It / Score 16 F

Purina One Large Breed Puppy / Score 62 F

Royal Canin Boxer / Score 103 A+

Royal Canin Bulldog / Score 100 A+

Royal Canin Natural Blend Adult / Score 106 A+

Science Diet Advanced Protein Senior 7+ / Score 63 F

Science Diet for Large Breed Puppies / Score 69 F

Sensible Choice Chicken and Rice / Score 97 A

Solid Gold / Score 99 A

Summit / Score 99 A

Timberwolf Organics Wild & Natural Dry / Score 120 A+

Wellness Super5 Mix Chicken / Score 110 A+

Wolfking Adult Dog (bison) by Solid Gold / Score 97 (Contact Us Please)

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94-100+ = A 86-93 = B 78-85 = C 70-77 = D <70 = F

Dang. It's harder for a dog food to be in the A-B range then it is for kids grades in school. If anything below a 70 is an F half the kids in schools these days would fail.

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ahh Goldberry and Noble I used to feed Noble and it is a top quaility food. That is another I highly recomend towards the top of the list, it is top quaility!! My cousin actually bought his current yellow lab from him and that is where I first heard about noble. When you start comparing ingredients Noble isn't even in the same league as Science Diet. And surprisingly the price is very comparable. Money spent on the food not the advertising!!!!!

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I stayed out of this thread as they usually become ford/chevy debates. It good to see a civil ebb and flow as to what food is good for your dogs.

As many know, I fed Diamond to my dogs for the 15 years. Last fall I switched to Canidae on the reccomendation of a good breeder. It's good to see the Diamond products I fed for years, rate up there in quality for a 'mass' produced food, but I really like the score Canidae recieved! My dogs have been doing fantastic on it. It is comprised of food sources you do not normally see in pet foods : herring meal, flax seed oil, sunflower oil, lots of meat (all human grade, hormone free). It is a food you can use from puppy to senior. I have all my dogs on it from and 8 month old puppy (who switched to it at 8 weeks old after he came home from the breeder) to a 13 year old lab. They are all doing great. It is o.k. in cost. (I think $36) It was about an $8.00-$9.00 a bag jump from Diamond, but I figured I will change due to the quality of the food.

Good Luck!


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Wow, what a list, probably need to rethink my dog food choices. thanks for the info.

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Thanks for posting that list 311Hemi. Yes that is the exact sheet and list I was talking about, you beat me to it so thanks. Also to add to that List Noble which was talked about in that list. It scores 100-A. I am so glad this post has turned into a great Info debate. I started it just because I have run into so many people who cherish their dog buddies but don't really know much about the food. I never intended to bash anyones food choices. Only to get out the info to make sure you are feeding the best food you can for your pet. AS you can see from the list there are many choices you can be proud to feed your pet. And some to stay away from. I hope my efforts making this post were usefull to some. Thanks for all the feedback!!! I love my dogs as I know you all do.

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I did some searching on the web and can find no original source for the grading method. Some person on another board claims to be the author. If they are the author, this person isn't a scientist and basically made this up. I think this is a natural/organic dog food thing someone cooked up.

For me if stuff like this doesn't come from the FDA or some other neutral scientific lab then I'm a bit skeptical about motives etc...

Take the system for what it's worth and where it came from. If your dog is healthy and happy with the food you have it on then your feeding the right stuff to your dog.

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I have to agree with GSP. The extra credit points give it away that the guy might own a some stock in one of the "natural" dog food companys. Or he might have recieved a little kick back for comming up with this formula. 37 extra credit points on a 100 point test, and the A-F range is only 30? Wish the teachers in school would have given that much extra credit. Take it for what it is, something someone made up and posted on the intermess.


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I seen that list/criteria and sent it to the Vets at Diamond. Now I know they work for Diamond so they might be a little bias but it made some sense here is the reply:

We offer several different product lines to meet the needs of our customers and their pets.

For the pet owner's desiring very holistic formulas we have a Premium Edge and Chicken Soup product line. These formulas will be more expensive than the non-holistic product lines like the Diamond. This does not mean that the product is not a good product. This is just a scoring system by an individual using criteria that appears to have been established by customer demand. Diamond has several formulas on the list below that have scored quite well. These are: Premium Edge Chicken Rice and Veggie Adult, Diamond Naturals lamb and rice, Diamond Naturals Large Breed 60+, Chicken Soup Senior.

Janet L. Rettenmaier, DVM, MS

Veterinary Services

Diamond Pet Foods

Meta, MO 65058

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