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post #11 of 22 Old 02-08-2013, 02:04 AM
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 525
• Horses: 4
After a lot of comparisons and research on a website called Dog Food Analysis, might even be, I settled on Taste of the Wild since it's grain-free.
When the budget to a hit, I switched everybody over to 4 Health, which is Tractor Supply's brand. It's free of corn and soy and is about 1/2 the price of the big name brands, both good and bad. Here, a 35lb bag runs about $28. Lasts me about a month and I feed it to our 5 dogs (Lab, Pomeranian, Beagle x Jack Russell, Pointer, Great Pyrenese). The Pointer is our current foster dog. I feed all of our rescues 4 Heath and they've all done really well on it, even coming out of neglect.
A major perk of the foods without corn & soy, and especially the completely grain-free diets, is that they really cut down on the odors on both ends, if you know what I mean. They don't poo as much either because they're digesting more instead of just passing cheap fillers through their systems.
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post #12 of 22 Old 02-08-2013, 04:46 AM
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 133
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Since my little guy is ubersensitive with his food, out vet recommend Taste of the Wild. We give it to our mastiff, my parents medium sized dog,and my little 12 pound guy. They all love it-and my guys never stop moving so it great for high energy dogs!
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post #13 of 22 Old 02-08-2013, 10:28 AM
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: California
Posts: 286
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I believe dogs do much better on a grainfree food. I have sure seen the difference in allergies in mine since switching years ago. I used to feed Taste of the Wild but have become very discouraged with Diamond products and they manufacture TOTW. I have since switched my crew over to Blue Wilderness (the grain free version) and I always choose a fish based option (salmon in this case) as my breed (Chinese Crested) is very allergy prone and fish seems to be an easier protein source for them. I have been very happy with this food and only had good results.
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post #14 of 22 Old 02-08-2013, 10:59 AM
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: South Range, WI
Posts: 1,924
• Horses: 8
I get meat for my dogs from a variety of sources. I post ads on Craigslist for old/unwanted/freezerburned meat. I buy soon to be expired meat from the grocery store. Sometimes I end up paying full price. One meal per day is chicken leg quarters, cause they're cheap.

Venison is the best and a lot of hunters don't end up using all of the meat, so I get a lot of that.
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post #15 of 22 Old 02-08-2013, 11:36 AM
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chino Valley, AZ
Posts: 15,909
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Here's some real-life numbers for you.

When I got Cash, my now 60lbs 6yo aussie/st bernard mix, he was 10-months-old and weighed 40lbs. Not knowing any better, I fed him Purina dog chow. He is free fed, but does not overeat. A 20lbs bag of Purina lasted us one week and cost me $10 a bag. His coat was a mess (he constantly shed his undercoat, even in winter) and his poop was huge and smelly. I started researching dog food after joining a pet forum and decided that what I was feeding him wasn't good enough. So, I "upgraded" to Purina One, thinking it was at least better than the regular Purina. We went through a 15lbs bag every week and a half and it cost me $15 a bag. He still shed and his poop was still big and smelly. So, I finally decided to splurge and bought a 15lbs bag of Blue Buffalo. It cost me $35 and I thought I was gonna die cuz it was so expensive. However, that 15lbs bag lasted us 6 weeks, Cash's coat was soft and shiny, he stopped shedding his undercoat (except when he blows it out in spring, which is normal), and his poop was smaller and barely smelled at all. Never again will I feed a cheap food.

Now we feed the dogs (6yo Cash and our new 3.5-month-old aussie/border collie puppy, Abby) and our cat (8-month-old Cosmo) Taste of the Wild. They are all happy, healthy and beautiful...and we buy dog food (a 15lbs bag) and cat food (an 8lbs bag) about every three weeks and spend a total of $45 on both when we buy them.
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post #16 of 22 Old 02-08-2013, 03:56 PM
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 11,869
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I have easy keeper horses and a hard keeper dog. Dell has an insane metabolism, makes for a fantastic hunting partner that can go all day and never tires but man does he eat and burn it up fast. We've tried most brands but he maintains weight best on Blue Buffalo's Wilderness for large breeds. It is very high protein percentage, don't know that it would be a good choice for a less active dog. I would recommend BB in general though, we've been very pleased with it. It's a bit pricey but for us it's cost effective because he eats less of it than anything else we've tried.

Here's my food burner just because he's cute
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post #17 of 22 Old 02-08-2013, 07:36 PM
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 57
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When my dogs were younger we fed IAMS then switched to Taste of the Wild. They love it!

Last edited by Willow Winds; 02-08-2013 at 07:42 PM.
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post #18 of 22 Old 02-09-2013, 11:47 AM
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 1,182
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Cali is currently being fed Go! Chicken and Turkey but was also fed Acana Ranchlands for awhile.

It's a very good quality food, price is pretty good as well. She does good on it as well, and the coconut oil in it is a bonus for less itching, etc.

Forever loved, never forgotten; my beautiful Indie. <3 Hoofprints on my heart.
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post #19 of 22 Old 02-09-2013, 12:33 PM
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Mid Northern TN
Posts: 2,475
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LOVE the twinkie vs real food (apple) analogy, and it's dead on! The ingredients on the dog food bag are listed by weight, including water. So if something says chicken, then corn meal, that chicken is 80% water while the corn meal is dry. Therefore, once it's all dried out and kibbled, there is actually MORE corn than chicken. So I look for meat meal (cooked dried meat) or meat byproduct meal first (meat byproducts are liver, heart, intestines, lungs, kidneys, and other 'gross' things that people don't eat much but are good sources of protein) when I'm reading a label.

I have two GSDs. One is sensitive to corn, the other to chicken, so that limits our options. It is much cheaper in vet bills for skin and GI issues and in feeding less, as well as time spent cleaning up 'accidents' for me to feed a food that is higher quality and more expensive per pound. I like Diamond Naturals, Taste of the Wild, Blue Buffalo, and Natural Balance. I LOVED the Costco foods, but there's no Costco where I love now.

I was watching a puppy for a few weeks, had to pick up some food. Figured, heck, the owners were feeding it Purina Puppy Chow, so I'll stick with that because it's cheap and it's not my place to change their dog's food, right? Big Mistake. This little 20lb guy was eating more cups of food a day than my 80lb Shepherd, and pooping ALL the time. AND it was all soft and smelly and gross. Never Again!
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post #20 of 22 Old 02-09-2013, 12:48 PM
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Orange County, NC
Posts: 6,224
• Horses: 5
We have always fed good old Wal-Wart Ol' Roy. Many years ago our small animal vet would always push Science Diet, etc on us. After our dog reached 17 and was still healthy he told us he would stop trying to get us to switch.
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