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Old 02-13-2014, 07:03 PM
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Default What are your requirements in a food?

In general, for your specific dog (allergies, preferences, etc), or both! Are there specific ingredients that you avoid (or look for?) Protein %? Brands, manufacturers? Price? Do you look at reviews? I want to hear all of your considerations when you choose a food, including raw or home cooked
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Old 02-13-2014, 07:06 PM
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My requirements basically are

(1) My dogs do well on it.
(2) I can be as certain as is reasonable that it is safe for my dogs, in both the short- and long-term.
(3) Doesn't break the bank.
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Old 02-13-2014, 07:54 PM
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Well....at this point....anything that they do well on and I can afford.

I try to avoid corn, wheat, and soy, mainly because I don't know how Abrams would do on them. For that matter, I also try to stay away from a lot of rice, purely out of habit as my past dog didn't do well on foods with rice. And, of course, other things like artificial coloring, sugar, etc., etc. are just bad. I'm also programmed to look for novel protein (ie., not chicken or lamb) because my past dogs did better on duck/turkey/novel proteins as opposed to chicken/lamb.

I prefer a food with at least 25% protein, although I don't really have a reason for it.

If foods are similar, I pick one with a higher kcal/cup content than the other.

I'm also overly concerned with Ca:P ratio due to Abrams being a large breed and growing.

And, of course, I look at the AAFCO statement to make sure it's suitable for what I need (maintenance vs growth, or ALS).
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Old 02-13-2014, 08:18 PM
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I like somewhere in the 30ish% protein range, no real reason other than... yay protein.

I want a balanced mix of meat and grains/grain replacement. What I hate more than anything is to see a food start off with chicken meal, and then there's this string of "potatoes, sweet potatoes, potato starch, potato this and that...." MOAR MEAT. Or good God, just anything else other than more potatoes.

I avoid the usual - corn, soy, wheat, by-products, added colors, sugar, unnamed meats.

Less than $60 for 30lbs.

And of course, I don't want a company that has been riddled with recalls.

If I'm thinking of trying a new food I'll usually check out what other people think of it, ultimately I don't put much weight in those reviews though.
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Old 02-13-2014, 10:55 PM
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In general in a kibble:
**at least 28% protein (because protein is necessary for muscle maintenance, and my dogs always look better on "higher" protein foods)
**sweet potatoes or chick peas as the primary carb (because they don't tend to cause glucose spikes that regular potatoes and peas can)
**balanced Ca:P ratio

I get a lot of food for free or get it discounted, so retail price doesn't matter a whole lot.

I don't feed Diamond products.

I have come to love the benefits of raw green cow tripe, so both dogs get it regularly. It is so nutrient dense and protein rich in such a digestible form... it just smells disgusting.

I keep wanting to try Orijen 6 fish, but I keep forgetting! Lately the only kibble I feed is Canine Caviar Herring or Duck.
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Old 02-13-2014, 11:21 PM
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We're just going through the new-food search now.
- no "bad" stuff - sugar, added sodium, artificial colours,
- no oatmeal (gives Snowball the runs - other grains seem to be fine though)
- named meat meal and/or meat as the first one or two ingredients
- not too calorically dense. Snowball isn't the most active dog in the world, and I use his kibble for training - the more volume of kibble he gets, the more training we get to do.
- budget-friendly

He's been on 24% protein, but we just bought a bag of Legacy Horizon which is 34% protein (80% min animal protein)... we'll see how it goes. He'll probably be fine... its not like raw is any less protein, and he's done fine on that, lol.
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Old 02-14-2014, 01:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GingerKid View Post
He's been on 24% protein, but we just bought a bag of Legacy Horizon which is 34% protein (80% min animal protein)... we'll see how it goes. He'll probably be fine... its not like raw is any less protein, and he's done fine on that, lol.
You can't do a direct comparison of raw to kibble, because raw (in its raw form) is usually around 10-15% protein. Raw has more moisture than kibble so you'd have to do math to figure out the actual dry matter calculation.
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Old 02-14-2014, 09:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shai View Post
My requirements basically are

(1) My dogs do well on it.
(2) I can be as certain as is reasonable that it is safe for my dogs, in both the short- and long-term.
(3) Doesn't break the bank.
That, plus no BHA/BHT, or ethoxyquin (yes, I still see treats & food with these preservative), artificail coloring, and, because of Caleb's food issues- no beef, dairy, grains (other than oatmeal or flax). Root vegetables are OK if they're 5th or further down on the ingredient list.
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Old 02-14-2014, 09:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MicksMom View Post
That, plus no BHA/BHT, or ethoxyquin (yes, I still see treats & food with these preservative), artificail coloring, and, because of Caleb's food issues- no beef, dairy, grains (other than oatmeal or flax). Root vegetables are OK if they're 5th or further down on the ingredient list.
Yep, that falls under Item 2 -- longterm safety
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Old 02-14-2014, 09:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpringerLover View Post
You can't do a direct comparison of raw to kibble, because raw (in its raw form) is usually around 10-15% protein. Raw has more moisture than kibble so you'd have to do math to figure out the actual dry matter calculation.
Can you tell I'm still new to this whole thing? Hopefully the new food (34% protein) goes okay. We'll be starting the switch in the next week or two.

Another thing I look for is made in Canada. It's not a requirement, but in two foods that are equivalent otherwise, it's the deciding factor. Support local, and all that.
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