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WendyAndMilo

Dog food - cost vs. quality

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I'm seriously lost as to how to compare different foods and then how do you balance out budget vs quality?  I know one of my cats did really well on Science Diet for a problem he was having so I'm assuming they're really good quality, but with how much my dog eats, I don't want to spend $100/month on dry food.  She's been eating the costco brand food for quite a while that is like $35?  I don't know the quality of it though. 

She is a Chesapeake Bay Retriever/Golden Retriever mix and I would like something that will help her age gently (she's 7 now).

 

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you will get a ton of different opinions. Personally, after decades working in veterinary medicine, and owning dogs, I stick with the main companies that do ongoing nutrition research, fully test their food, etc. Also, with the issues with nutritionally dilated cardiomyopathy, especially in golden retrievers, I'd advise sticking with a company that does not have any known cases associated with their food. For now, that means the big companies, Hills, Purina, Iams, Eukanuba, Royal Canin. Some of those are expensive, but not all. Given what you are saying I'd check prices on Iams or Purina One, which have the testing behind them, but lower cost due to slightly less expensive ingredients, lower fatty acid content, etc. Also, definitely check the prices on Chewy if you haven't done so, they are often significantly cheaper than in the store. 

The costco food is made by diamond, which has had some issues with cardiomyopathy. 

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Have you talked to your vet? That’s where I would start. Explain your concerns (and cost is a completely valid concern) and see what they recommend. Our vet recommended Purina Pro Plus it’s not terribly expensive but was more than Iams. We had a cat before we got a dog feeding a cat was so much simpler. 

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Here the price seems to correspond to the amount of protein . the higher the protein content the higher the cost. But the higher the protein the less the dog needs to eat so it works out more economical to get the one with higher protein. this is here usually a product that is advertising as working dog formula.

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I love Chesapeakes!  We had one once.  (Favorite dog ever -- he was a mix.)

Honestly, we've always used Purina.  I read an article recently about various dog food brands and weird things found in them, and Purina was still rated high on the chart of trustworthy dog food.  I like, too, how they seem to change their ingredients based on latest research.  My dogs have always done well with Purina and lived long lives.  I did switch over to Purina's lamb and rice blend for my Chesapeake at some point as he got older, and he did well with that.

I actually wouldn't trust our veterinarian to make the best decision for us.  In my experience, they've always recommended high-end expensive brands, when Purina does just fine.

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Anecdotally, I’ve always had better luck with health, coat, teeth, potty time, behavior, etc. on premium pet foods.  That said, my current cat and dog will only eat certain cheaper foods, so we go with those! My cat has a thyroid issue, but that’s not unusual for his age. And my chi-mutt is obnoxious, but that’s not unusual for his breed. Otherwise, they’re just fine.

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There are many problems with deciding what pet food is "best." Just a few --

The word "premium" means absolutely nothing. Very much like the phrase "clean eating," the definition is solely in the mind of the user.

Cost doesn't always equal quality.

Ingredients only tell a small part of the quality story. To me the best ingredients mean absolutely nothing if the manufacturer of the food has a horrible recall history. I wouldn't bring a food manufactured by Diamond into my house. They have a horrendous track record. Unfortunately, it's often difficult to find out what company manufactures a pet food. In general only the largest companies have their own manufacturing facilities, although there are a handful of smaller companies that do. It's relatively safe to assume that the majority of foods marketed as "premium" are being manufactured by a contracted facility. So a "premium" food may be made at a Purina facility or it may be made at a Diamond facility. Or something even worse (if there is anything worse than Diamond--I suppose it's possible).

Addressing your question specifically,  @WendyAndMilo and taking into consideration the current issues with DCM and that your dog is large and a mix of two breeds who already may be at higher risk of DCM, if she were my dog I'd go with an established brand name food by one of the major pet food companies. I've always had good results with Purina One. And assuming your dog doesn't have any food allergies or sensitivities, I would at least occasionally (if not daily) add in some healthy-for-dogs "human" foods. 

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1 hour ago, Pawz4me said:

There are many problems with deciding what pet food is "best." Just a few --

The word "premium" means absolutely nothing. Very much like the phrase "clean eating," the definition is solely in the mind of the user.

Cost doesn't always equal quality.

Ingredients only tell a small part of the quality story. To me the best ingredients mean absolutely nothing if the manufacturer of the food has a horrible recall history. I wouldn't bring a food manufactured by Diamond into my house. They have a horrendous track record. Unfortunately, it's often difficult to find out what company manufactures a pet food. In general only the largest companies have their own manufacturing facilities, although there are a handful of smaller companies that do. It's relatively safe to assume that the majority of foods marketed as "premium" are being manufactured by a contracted facility. So a "premium" food may be made at a Purina facility or it may be made at a Diamond facility. Or something even worse (if there is anything worse than Diamond--I suppose it's possible).

Addressing your question specifically,  @WendyAndMilo and taking into consideration the current issues with DCM and that your dog is large and a mix of two breeds who already may be at higher risk of DCM, if she were my dog I'd go with an established brand name food by one of the major pet food companies. I've always had good results with Purina One. And assuming your dog doesn't have any food allergies or sensitivities, I would at least occasionally (if not daily) add in some healthy-for-dogs "human" foods. 

 

What is wrong with Diamond?  I just looked up my dog's food, Taste of the Wild, and it is made by Diamond.  Is the main issue the cardiomyopathy that Ktgrok mentioned above?  Or are there other concerns?  I did a lot of research when we settled on this, and it seemed to be highly rated.   My dog is a border collie, and she started with the Taste of the Wild puppy food, and we switched to the adult version when she was about 1 1/2 years old.  She is now 4 and seems to be healthy -- goes to the vet twice a year.   I hate the thought of trying to switch dog foods.  At one time she was on another food (late puppy maybe), and she had bad breath which she doesn't get from Taste of the Wild.

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17 minutes ago, Serenade said:

 

What is wrong with Diamond?  I just looked up my dog's food, Taste of the Wild, and it is made by Diamond.  Is the main issue the cardiomyopathy that Ktgrok mentioned above?  Or are there other concerns?  I did a lot of research when we settled on this, and it seemed to be highly rated.   My dog is a border collie, and she started with the Taste of the Wild puppy food, and we switched to the adult version when she was about 1 1/2 years old.  She is now 4 and seems to be healthy -- goes to the vet twice a year.   I hate the thought of trying to switch dog foods.  At one time she was on another food (late puppy maybe), and she had bad breath which she doesn't get from Taste of the Wild.

Many recalls. Issues with consistency from batch to batch. Taste of the Wild in particular has had issues with nutritionally linked Cardiomyopathy. I would at the VERY least make sure you are not using a grain free formula. 

As for ratings...the biggest dog food rating site is run by a dentist, not someone with a background in veterinary science, animal nutrition, etc. 

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Just now, Ktgrok said:

Many recalls. Issues with consistency from batch to batch. Taste of the Wild in particular has had issues with nutritionally linked Cardiomyopathy. I would at the VERY least make sure you are not using a grain free formula. 

As for ratings...the biggest dog food rating site is run by a dentist, not someone with a background in veterinary science, animal nutrition, etc. 

 

Thank you for the info.  I wish this dog food matter was simple.  "Buy this, and you'll be fine."

LOL, it was so simple when I was growing up.  Go to the grocery, buy dog food, feed dog.   My dog ate Gravy Train, which I'm sure was because it was cheap.  Today you can buy what's supposed to be a quality dog food and then maybe it's really not.  

Sounds like Purina is sill a good food.  Maybe we'll look into that.  Thanks again.

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38 minutes ago, Serenade said:

 

What is wrong with Diamond?  I just looked up my dog's food, Taste of the Wild, and it is made by Diamond.  Is the main issue the cardiomyopathy that Ktgrok mentioned above?  Or are there other concerns?  I did a lot of research when we settled on this, and it seemed to be highly rated.   My dog is a border collie, and she started with the Taste of the Wild puppy food, and we switched to the adult version when she was about 1 1/2 years old.  She is now 4 and seems to be healthy -- goes to the vet twice a year.   I hate the thought of trying to switch dog foods.  At one time she was on another food (late puppy maybe), and she had bad breath which she doesn't get from Taste of the Wild.

Totally echoing what @Ktgrok said, but -- Over the years Diamond has had numerous recalls that resulted in the death of pets. Aflatoxins have been an issue for them several times. They have been cited for numerous violations in their plants. One particular one that stands out in my mind was when they were cited for using duct tape to hold some of their processing equipment together. I"m guessing duct tape is a wee bit difficult to clean/sanitize, not to mention that it could (maybe it did--I don't remember) come off and get into the food.

Don't get me started on ratings sites. Like Katie said, I've yet to see one that was run by someone who I thought was truly knowledgeable about pet food. Many of them don't even list the criteria they use for rating.

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Also, those rating sites say things like, "byproducts are terrible" and then in the same breath tout the benefits of raw food diets full of chicken hearts and liver. Um, those ARE byproducts, lol. Byproducts are good! 

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Ok I think I'm going to try the Purina One stuff... do I get the large breed food or the 7+ food?  Also, is there any benefit to canned food?  

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2 hours ago, WendyAndMilo said:

Ok I think I'm going to try the Purina One stuff... do I get the large breed food or the 7+ food?  Also, is there any benefit to canned food?  

7 plus

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4 hours ago, WendyAndMilo said:

Ok I think I'm going to try the Purina One stuff... do I get the large breed food or the 7+ food?  Also, is there any benefit to canned food?  

 

Just curious, what is 7+?  Is that a Purina thing?

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If you are feeding a kibble based food, I'd advise not using a formula with less than 30/20 (protein/fat).

Many "senior" formulas radically cut the fat in formulas. That's bad. Very bad.

For all dogs cutting the fat portion and feeding high amounts of carbohydrates actively de-tunes a dog, meaning the food itself robs a dog of vitality and stamina.  This is not "woo," but is well-established in the veterinary literature.

Giving a high carb (low fat) diet to a senior dog is the most counterproductive move a person could take. Yet, the major dog food manufacturers all have low-fat senior formulas. It is crazy.

Fat provides dogs with sustainable energy supply and increases their stamina (as measured by VO2 Max scores). Dogs burn fat beautifully (it is what they were shaped by evolution to use). Fat in conjunction with animal protein keeps dogs fit, lean, and energetic.

In contrast, a high carb diet cuts stamina and promotes obesity.

Best to feed smaller amounts of nutritionally dense high-protein/high-fat than high-carb. The fewer carbohydrates, the better. Canines have no essential need for carbs. They are filler and dogs pay a price.

Aging dogs can use all the nutritional support they can get to keep their energy up and their weight down. Senior formulas that raise carb levels are as counterproductive to promoting optimal health as it gets.

Minimum 30/20.

Bill

 

 

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20 percent fat is not going to work for a lot of senior dogs, mine included. Both because of tolerance to high fat diets (pancreatitis, etc) but due to calorie content. Yes, on paper you can feed less, but many dogs won't be satisfied with the tiny amount they get if the food is very high calorie. 

I know Bill feels dogs do best on a high fat diet, but although highly active canine athletes often need or do well on it the average american couch potato dog may not. 

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50 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

20 percent fat is not going to work for a lot of senior dogs, mine included. Both because of tolerance to high fat diets (pancreatitis, etc) but due to calorie content. Yes, on paper you can feed less, but many dogs won't be satisfied with the tiny amount they get if the food is very high calorie. 

I know Bill feels dogs do best on a high fat diet, but although highly active canine athletes often need or do well on it the average american couch potato dog may not. 

It is proven beyond a shadow of a doubt in the veterinary research that dogs do best on a high-protein/high-fat diet.

Dogs are turned into "couch potatoes" by a high-carb diet. Directly. Full stop. 

I sometimes wonder if some people (consciously or not) embrace a high-carb "junk food" diet precisely because it makes their dogs lethargic and inactive.

I guess a person has to ask themselves what they want for their dogs. The most athleticism and good health they can advance through appropriate food or whether they want to have a couch potato who sleeps all day and is bad health? Because that is the choice.

The less food dogs eat in terms of volume the better.

It is massively unkind to load up a dog with large portions of low-calorie food. Dogs are satisfied when they get proper portions of fat. This satisfies them. And digesting less food is a kindness, especially for older dogs.  The thinking that promotes huge amounts of high carb food to satisfy dog's appetites is the path to obesity (in addition to lethargy).

The worst thing for a senior dog is to be fat and inactive.

Give your dogs a chance to thrive. Do not feed high-carb rations. Dogs pay a very high cost to their physical health when fed high-carb.

Not good at all.

Bill

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Spy Car
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1. No, it is not proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that all dogs do best on a high fat diet. it just isn't. If you can show me a study showing that dogs of all ages and all breeds are healthier and happier on high fat diets I'm happy to look at it. 

2. No one said huge amounts of food. I said that some dogs would need tiny amounts of a high calorie "sport" type dog food that has 20 percent fat. I don't think a large breed dog eating say, a cup of food twice a day is a "huge" amount, I think it is probably a reasonable amount. I disagree that all dogs would be more satisfied with 1/2 cup or whatever of a higher calorie food. I've lived this dilemma, as my one dog needs higher energy food, and does eat a 30/20 formula where my older one has had pancreatitis in the past, does not do well on that high fat, and was gaining weight despite cutting back the amount significantly. 

There is also the issue that feeding significantly less of a food than is suggested can lead to nutrient deficiencies, as the amounts of minerals/vitamins/etc in the recipe are based on the dog eating a certain quantity of the food. If you feed a little less there is wiggle room, but if feeding more than 1/3 less than indicated there is a risk of deficiency and it is advised to switch to a lower calorie food. That is the advice of veterinary nutritionists. 

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Thankfully the days of senior dog foods being very low protein is past - the Purina One senior formula is I believe 28% protein. It was thought at one point that too much protein would harm an older dog's kidneys, but that is no longer considered a blanket recommendation. 

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7 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

1. No, it is not proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that all dogs do best on a high fat diet. it just isn't. If you can show me a study showing that dogs of all ages and all breeds are healthier and happier on high fat diets I'm happy to look at it. 

2. No one said huge amounts of food. I said that some dogs would need tiny amounts of a high calorie "sport" type dog food that has 20 percent fat. I don't think a large breed dog eating say, a cup of food twice a day is a "huge" amount, I think it is probably a reasonable amount. I disagree that all dogs would be more satisfied with 1/2 cup or whatever of a higher calorie food. I've lived this dilemma, as my one dog needs higher energy food, and does eat a 30/20 formula where my older one has had pancreatitis in the past, does not do well on that high fat, and was gaining weight despite cutting back the amount significantly. 

There is also the issue that feeding significantly less of a food than is suggested can lead to nutrient deficiencies, as the amounts of minerals/vitamins/etc in the recipe are based on the dog eating a certain quantity of the food. If you feed a little less there is wiggle room, but if feeding more than 1/3 less than indicated there is a risk of deficiency and it is advised to switch to a lower calorie food. That is the advice of veterinary nutritionists. 

Please show me a single study where dogs have more vitality eating a high-carb diet vs one high in protein and fat. There are none. Zero. Meanwhile dozens and dozens that demonstrate the superiority of high-protein/high-fat rations.

It is one of the most studied aspects of animal nutrition.

One study, for example, took a bunch of "couch potato" type dogs and fed them a typical high carb kibble. Those dogs were then tested on treadmills for their aerobic capacity as measured by VO2 Max scores. Unsurprisingly these dogs had very poor scores.

The same dogs were then switched to a high-protein/high-fat diet for a time and re-tested. Nothing in these dog's lives changed other than their food. When re-tested the VO2 Max scores soared to nearly the level of aerobic capacity as elite canine athletes due to diet alone. 

Dogs evolved to burn fat as their primary energy source. Not carbs. They burn fats beautifully, unlike carbs where there is always a crash and burn.

If dog owners want to turn healthy animals into lethargic couch potatoes who suffer from obesity, joint issue, and bad health, then feeding high carbs is an excellent choice.

Otherwise, it is foolish and deeply injurious to canine health.

Senior dogs are under enough challenges without robbing them of their stamina and their vitality through food-based de-tuning. It ages a dog.

The issue of nutritional deficiencies that you raise in feeding less food is a red-herring. All that's missing is empty calories from nonessential carbohydrates. Formulas are balanced according to the calorie density in dog foods. The is no reason to feed a dog any amount of carbohydrates. The less they get the better.

Dogs are satisfied when they eat fats. Fats trigger satiety. If human beings are incapable of not overfeeding a dog, then those people ought not to be dog owners. 

Feeding massive amounts of low cal food to dogs is not kind. They are required to process unnatural about of waste. It is not normal or healthy. Plus humans have to deal with the absurd about of stool. It is a losing proposition all around.

Pancreatitis is a separate issue and almost always happens to dogs who are fed very high carb diets that undermine a healthy pancreas in the first place, rather than regularizing dogs to a natural diet.

If an owner of an older dog puts that senior on a high-carb diet they will inevitably see that dog lose any spunk he or she has left. It is a terrible thing to do to a beloved pet. They deserve better.

Bill

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Dog food stresses me out. We were buying Blue Buffalo Freedom dog food until someone told me we should change (I've forgotten the reason).  Switched to Diamond Naturals for the big dog and Nutro for the little dogs. Then the Diamond-brand stuff happened. Neither little dog loves the Nutro....

So I just ordered three different types of Purina Pro from Chewy.com (one of the little dog eats grain-free... otherwise she is miserable with itchy skin).

Then, I think to myself... the only reason Purina hasn't been embroiled in all the recent dog food drama is probably because they simply have better, higher-paid publicity folks out there managing the brand... *sigh*

When I was a kid, my parents went into Sam's, bought whatever dog food was there, and we went home. Our family dogs lived to be 17 and 15 years old. I'd say they were fine.

Edited by easypeasy
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12 hours ago, WendyAndMilo said:

Ok I think I'm going to try the Purina One stuff... do I get the large breed food or the 7+ food?  Also, is there any benefit to canned food?  

I think any of them would work fine. Outside of large breed puppy food (which really is a must), there's a lot of overlap between regular adult or all life stages foods and the others. I do like to give some canned food. It's less processed than kibble, most dogs love it, and I'm a really huge fan of variety in a dog's diet. Adding in some canned is one way to achieve that.

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We live in South America, so not all of the brands available to you are available here, but I believe our experience may be typical. For many years, we fed our dogs Purina Dog Chow or other dry dog foods made by Purina.  They would get bored, and every year or two, we would switch from one food to another food.  Then, because of greatly reduced income, and the very weak (at that time) U.S. Dollar, we had to reduce our costs. My SIL told my wife about a dog food made by a company called Solla. Their plant is located approximately 90 minutes up the highway from the city of Cali.  We have OLD dogs and we have YOUNG dogs.  They all seem to thrive on the Solla dog food. That's what they've eaten, for approximately the past 10 or 11 years.  Here's the kicker, we also have cats.  When I feed the dogs, we have at least 2 cats who like to eat the dry dog food. Since cats are known as finicky eaters, that seems to indicate to me the quality of the Solla dog food.  On their bags of dog food, the information is in Spanish and in English, so I am wondering if they export to the U.S.A. or another English speaking country?

Bottom line: I do not believe paying a high price is a guarantee of high quality or that your dog(s) going to enjoy eating the expensive food.

Each brand will be different and if/when  you change the dog food you serve, you need to do that gradually, over a week or two, to help them with the transition.

ETA: Many years ago, I had an elderly Old English Sheepdog. I lived in Texas. She began eating an IAMS dry food for Intestinal Diet. I/D or something. They make special foods, for dogs with special medical problems and I assume their quality is very high. She moved here at 12 1/2 and lived to be  almost 16 years old.

Edited by Lanny
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5 hours ago, easypeasy said:

Dog food stresses me out. We were buying Blue Buffalo Freedom dog food until someone told me we should change (I've forgotten the reason).  Switched to Diamond Naturals for the big dog and Nutro for the little dogs. Then the Diamond-brand stuff happened. Neither little dog loves the Nutro....

So I just ordered three different types of Purina Pro from Chewy.com (one of the little dog eats grain-free... otherwise she is miserable with itchy skin).

Then, I think to myself... the only reason Purina hasn't been embroiled in all the recent dog food drama is probably because they simply have better, higher-paid publicity folks out there managing the brand... *sigh*

When I was a kid, my parents went into Sam's, bought whatever dog food was there, and we went home. Our family dogs lived to be 17 and 15 years old. I'd say they were fine.

I've been part of a  facebook group for cardiomyopathy in dogs and the owners report if their dog has the issue (with veterinary notes/proof) and as of the last I checked there were zero cases from the big manufacturers. Since this is a social media group that anyone can join I don't think that is because of high paid publicity people suppressing the information. They just have food that is fully tested, etc. 

 

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Bill, you can state things as facts all day long, but they are not. It is NOT true that the nutrients in dog food are balanced on the calories in such a way that seriously underfeeding based on portions advised is safe. Ask a veterinary nutritionist. If the food is designed to provide X amount of nutrient B per 1 cup, and you feed the dog 1/2 a cup it will get half as much of nutrient B. This has in fact been linked to the recent cases of nutritionally mediated cardiomyopathy. Yes, dog foods have slightly more than needed of many things to account for people feeding a bit less, but if cutting back by more than 1/3 the recommended amount you should feed a less calorically dense food to assure that all nutrient needs are met. 

And again you are misrepresenting what I said. I never indicated dogs should eat "massive amounts" of food. I said that they often are not satisfied by tiny amounts. Feeding a 60 pound dog 1 cup of food twice a day is not a "massive" amount of food. It is not overfeeding, unless the food used is too high calorie. 

As for dogs being adapted to burn fat, we've gone round and round about this. Dogs were biologically adapted to eat wild game, which is LOW in fat. Now, if you are trying to increase stamina and performance yes, you can increase the fat. But no, most people don't have canine athletes who exercise at high levels and need the high calorie diet that a canine athlete needs. Taking studies based on racing dogs or other athletes and saying that a dog that sleeps on the couch 8 hours a day while owners are at work and then goes for a stroll around the neighborhood at a sedate pace needs the same food as a dog burning many times their resting rate while exercising for hours at a time is going to lead to problems. 

High protein, we agree on. But I've seen older, less active dogs gain weight on high fat, calorically dense diets over and over again. So although I use and advocate for such a thing for highly active dogs I won't agree that every dog, including less active breeds/ages, should eat that as well. And the studies I've found on this were done on a small number of younger dogs, not across breeds/ages/activitiy levels. As a comparison, a marathon athlete may perform better if drinking an electrolyte and sugar replacement like gatorade instead of water. But that doesn't mean that I should drink gatorade instead of water while I fold laundry and do dishes - it would in fact be a grave mistake to do so. Because what is needed for peak athletic performance is not always what is best in a different situation. 

Now, ideally, sure, all dogs would be running miles a day. But that's not going to happen, and the dog on the couch is not going to be satisfied with very very small amounts of food, no matter how high fat, and they are not going to have their micronutrient needs met if they eat that little. 

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Those saying that their dogs back in the day did well on whatever supermarket food, keep in mind those were made by the major brands. Now we have all sorts of tiny start up companies and various boutique brands with very little history behind them selling dog food, relying on marketing more than science...our parents didn't have that confusion of brands to pick from. The nutritional issues being seen are coming from those smaller companies, not the major brands. 

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I think dog food is just like human food and diet culture. We're way, way too quick to label foods or even whole groups of foods as good or bad (shoot, downright evil). And we're way too quick to jump on fad bandwagons.

Dog food decades ago wasn't great. And that's being kind.

A lot of the boutique/"premium" foods swung the pendulum in the other direction, but got a lot of things wrong (maybe very wrong) along the way. Many of them also engaged in a lot of false or at least very deceptive advertising (not that the big brands didn't do that, too).

Those boutique/"premium" foods caused the big brands to up their game and increase the quality of their products. So now I tend to think the big brands are probably better choices--they've got the science behind them and increased quality.

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I find it frustrating as well.  Dog (PWD) before these two we fed raw for first 9 months then switched to Canidae all stages for his the rest of his  life.  We chose it honestly because one of our children was allergic to egg and if food had egg in it and dog licked her she'd break out in hives and dh thought feeding raw and having toddler didn't mix well not to mention the cost.  

With our current (PWD) dogs our breeder, who was also our breeder of first dog was feeding Purina Pro Plan Sport to her dogs (instead of the Raw diet she was feeding when we got Splash)  So we did Purina Pro Plan for a while then switched around to the more boutique brands for a bit, don't know why, guess I bought into all the talk, settled on Earthborne for a bit. Added another PWD puppy a couple of years later, she also came home on Purina Pro Plan so we switched back for both dogs.  They are doing well. As is ds new GSD puppy on the large breed puppy food.

My mother in law feed her lab OldRoy from Walmart her whole life.  She  was active, vibrant, thin, her whole life and lived to be 16yrs old.  Go figure.

 

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1 hour ago, Ktgrok said:

Bill, you can state things as facts all day long, but they are not. It is NOT true that the nutrients in dog food are balanced on the calories in such a way that seriously underfeeding based on portions advised is safe. Ask a veterinary nutritionist. If the food is designed to provide X amount of nutrient B per 1 cup, and you feed the dog 1/2 a cup it will get half as much of nutrient B. This has in fact been linked to the recent cases of nutritionally mediated cardiomyopathy. Yes, dog foods have slightly more than needed of many things to account for people feeding a bit less, but if cutting back by more than 1/3 the recommended amount you should feed a less calorically dense food to assure that all nutrient needs are met. 

And again you are misrepresenting what I said. I never indicated dogs should eat "massive amounts" of food. I said that they often are not satisfied by tiny amounts. Feeding a 60 pound dog 1 cup of food twice a day is not a "massive" amount of food. It is not overfeeding, unless the food used is too high calorie. 

As for dogs being adapted to burn fat, we've gone round and round about this. Dogs were biologically adapted to eat wild game, which is LOW in fat. Now, if you are trying to increase stamina and performance yes, you can increase the fat. But no, most people don't have canine athletes who exercise at high levels and need the high calorie diet that a canine athlete needs. Taking studies based on racing dogs or other athletes and saying that a dog that sleeps on the couch 8 hours a day while owners are at work and then goes for a stroll around the neighborhood at a sedate pace needs the same food as a dog burning many times their resting rate while exercising for hours at a time is going to lead to problems. 

High protein, we agree on. But I've seen older, less active dogs gain weight on high fat, calorically dense diets over and over again. So although I use and advocate for such a thing for highly active dogs I won't agree that every dog, including less active breeds/ages, should eat that as well. And the studies I've found on this were done on a small number of younger dogs, not across breeds/ages/activitiy levels. As a comparison, a marathon athlete may perform better if drinking an electrolyte and sugar replacement like gatorade instead of water. But that doesn't mean that I should drink gatorade instead of water while I fold laundry and do dishes - it would in fact be a grave mistake to do so. Because what is needed for peak athletic performance is not always what is best in a different situation. 

Now, ideally, sure, all dogs would be running miles a day. But that's not going to happen, and the dog on the couch is not going to be satisfied with very very small amounts of food, no matter how high fat, and they are not going to have their micronutrient needs met if they eat that little. 

I only stare things as fact that have been proven beyond a reasonable doubt in the scientific veterinary literature.

It has been shown beyond any doubt that feeding high amounts of carbohydrates drastically reduces the vitality of dogs vs a high-protein/high-fat diet.

Feeding dogs a high-carb diet will turn hose dogs into couch potatoes. Guaranteed.

I just related the results with a significant study that involved "couch potato" dogs. The change in diet (alone) in these dogs dramatically improved their health and stamina. This mirrors studies with many other types of dogs. Dogs are robbed of their athleticism by feeding too many carbohydrates. It is an unkindness to turn members of a naturally athletic species into couch potatoes. And senior dogs suffer the most (not that it is good for dogs of any age).

Dogs will be less active when fed high-carb. Carb metabolism in canines does not supply sustained energy. The mechanism for why that's rue is well understood in the veterinary-medical, community.

If a person want not to be troubled by a dog with normal amounts of canine energy then feeding a high-carb diet is a great way to undermine their vitality. But that's a crummy way to treat our companions. It is using food as a drug that undermines their state of being. Why even have a dog if one is going to treat them in such a fashion.

This has been studied more than any other aspect of canine nutrition. The result is always the same no matter what the target group tested. Massive differences in stamina (vs lethargy) depending on whether a dog is fed a high-protein/high-fat diet or one with high-carbs.

People who can't control portions are not responsible and probably should not own dogs. Feeding excessive amounts of food is very rough on dogs, further exacerbates lethargy, and is bad for their health. Not to mention all the stool.

A 13% fat diet will, without fail, send a senior dog into a tailspin. It a person want to have a dog who will spend his/her last years barely moving, gaining weight,  and sleeping most of the day this is how to accomplish it. That's a crummy way to treat a dog IMO.

Bill

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Please show me where it has been proven that it is safe and good to feed significantly less than the recommended amount of a dog food, in order to restrict calories in a high calorie food? You say it is well known and proven. I saw that the veterinary nutritionists and those formulating the foods say differently. You show me how it is possible that a dog would get the right level of say, calcium or vitamin E or since or certain amino acids if they eat say, half the recommended amount. 

Again, you keep talking about feeding excessive amounts. No one said excessive amounts. 

And you keep talking about stamina. How much stamina does the average housepet need?

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1 hour ago, Ktgrok said:

Please show me where it has been proven that it is safe and good to feed significantly less than the recommended amount of a dog food, in order to restrict calories in a high calorie food? You say it is well known and proven. I saw that the veterinary nutritionists and those formulating the foods say differently. You show me how it is possible that a dog would get the right level of say, calcium or vitamin E or since or certain amino acids if they eat say, half the recommended amount. 

Again, you keep talking about feeding excessive amounts. No one said excessive amounts. 

And you keep talking about stamina. How much stamina does the average housepet need?

LOL. Who said to significantly restrict calories? Not me. Are you trying to defeat strawmen?

Feeding a smaller amount of calorically dense food (read high-protein/high-fat food) allows an owner to feed the same amount of calories while cutting down on the amount of food measured by volume or by mass.

Dog’s digestive systems are not evolved to deal with large low calorie meals. It is rough on them and makes them lethargic, on top of the issues with boom and bust carb methabolism.

High carb diets produce a lot of waste in the form of stool.

In addition to legumes, high volumes of fiber, carbs, and stool is being looked at as a potential risk factor in taurine related heart disease,

When dogs eat big meals they want to sleep. That’s natural. Processing food is best done while they rest. Adding bulk in the form of nonessential carbs is counterproductive if one’s desire is to keep a dog vital.

Any dog can use as much stamin as possible. This is life force. Dogs are not “couch potatoes” by nature. Using high-carb diets to de-nature a dog’s vitality is something this person doesn’t countenance as good animal husbandry.

Senior dogs fed a 13% fat based ration will suffer the inevitable consequences. This diet actively rbs them of vitality. Not a good way to go IMO.

Bill

 

 

 

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On 5/16/2019 at 10:25 AM, Pawz4me said:

Totally echoing what @Ktgrok said, but -- Over the years Diamond has had numerous recalls that resulted in the death of pets. Aflatoxins have been an issue for them several times. They have been cited for numerous violations in their plants. One particular one that stands out in my mind was when they were cited for using duct tape to hold some of their processing equipment together. I"m guessing duct tape is a wee bit difficult to clean/sanitize, not to mention that it could (maybe it did--I don't remember) come off and get into the food.

Don't get me started on ratings sites. Like Katie said, I've yet to see one that was run by someone who I thought was truly knowledgeable about pet food. Many of them don't even list the criteria they use for rating.

 

On 5/16/2019 at 3:19 PM, Ktgrok said:

Also, those rating sites say things like, "byproducts are terrible" and then in the same breath tout the benefits of raw food diets full of chicken hearts and liver. Um, those ARE byproducts, lol. Byproducts are good! 

 

Thank you both!  We're going to look into some of the other brands mentioned above.

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I notice, Bill, that YOU have not shown any studies to back up YOUR claim. You're the one with the burden of proof here, so let's see them.

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53 minutes ago, Tanaqui said:

I notice, Bill, that YOU have not shown any studies to back up YOUR claim. You're the one with the burden of proof here, so let's see them.

LOL. I don’t have the burden of anything. I did my homework and have relayed the finding in the medical literature. You can do your own due dillagence or not. Vast numbers of studies on high-protein/high-fat vs high card diets is available online. 

Google Scholar is your friend.

The evidence is overwhelming and it confirms real world experience.

Low fat/ high- carb diets directly undermine dog’s vitality. Feeding a 13% fat diet ensure that a member of a highly athletic species will turn into a deconditioned couch potato as a direct result of a bad diet.  

Bill

 

 

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