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Hi everyone. I'm confused about doing the raw diet thing. I've had my chi for about 1 1/2 weeks. He was found so I have no idea what he was fed before, only that he was in good shape and his teeth were very white. They actually don't seem as bright white now as when I first got him, but he doesn't seem interested in eating much of the dry food I give him. He wants canned, which I can't see him having been raised on and still have such white teeth. He keeps wanting to eat my cats' food. All my years growing up, I heard over and over from everyone, NEVER feed a dog chicken bones, or other small similar bones as they splinter and can get caught in the dogs intestinal tract and cause damage. Now I'm reading about all this raw food diet stuff which consists of giving the dog whole foods such as chicken...bones and all. I asked one of the vets where I work, and she doesn't believe in it. Her opinion (and its just that, an opinion) is, that over the years, a lot of scientific research has gone into the formulation and production of the different brands of dog food to make it healthier for the dogs. (I don't mean the really cheap stuff, I know that's no good). And that a natural, whole, raw diet is fine for a wild "natural" canine. But that most of our modern dogs (in her opinion, especially types like chihuahuas) are far from 'natural'. That they no longer have the systems for this type of diet. Also, even though wild dogs are considered carnivores, they are in fact incidental omnivores. They get plant materials in their diets by eating the stomach contents of the herbivores they prey on. My last three dogs have all been raised on Pedigree. My basset hound mix lived to be just over 16 in great health. My rough collie lived to be over 14 years with no health problems. The great dane I have now just turned 9 and still acts like he's 4 or 5. Her suggestion is 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it'. I'm pretty sure I can't afford these specialty diets like ZiwiPeak or others, even if I can find it in my area (which I highly doubt). But the raw stuff with the bones scares me. *Note*, I am only thinking about the chi's diet, not the dane's. At 9 years old, I'm not switching anything on him.
 

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If I only had a nickel.. =D

There are quite a few of us on here that are avid feeders of Prey Model Raw. Doesn't surprise me that your vet would suggest against it; keep in mind most vet schools are actually funded by Science Diet and the like companies...

Anyway, here's a good article on the "myths of raw feeding." That should answer a lot of your questions.

The Many Myths of Raw Feeding

But yes, feeding raw bones are safe; it is the COOKED bones that splinter and cause so much damage. =)

ETA: here are specific links on that page that answer some of the questions you brought up:

Re: Omnivores: Myths About Raw: Are dogs omnivores?

Re: Too distant from wild wolves: Myths About Raw: Are dogs too far removed from wolves to be fed raw food?

Re: Commercial foods: Myths About Raw: Are dogs living longer because of kibbled food?
 

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Great links from Kat in the above post!

I will just add that of course your vet doesn't support raw. Why would he? He was given a couple hours of nutrition training in school at the MOST and it was funded (and even the textbooks were printed by) dog food companies. Either Purina, Hills, or Waltham provided his education. These companies also provide his business with prescription foods and he is given a kickback for using them.

If raw bird bones splintered or caused damage to the insides of our dogs, there would be NO wolves. No coyotes. No foxes. No wild canids at all. Raw bones are soft and they are digested by the strong acid in the carnivores stomach. Cooked bones are another matter.... cooking changes the chemical composition of the bones and cooked bones certainly CAN cause problems.

I would ask your vet - how did dogs possibly SURVIVE for hundreds of years without kibble?! Kibble is a recent invention. It was created for the convenience of humans. It was created to use up the leftover meats and grains in the production of food for us.

If your vet did a necropsy on a wolf and one on a chihuahua side by side - there would be NO anatomical difference. The grey wolf and the domestic dog share 99% of their DNA. Yes, they've evolved to look different, but their GI system and their teeth are the same.

I'm glad your other dogs lived long lives. I'm sure we've all heard of Uncle Joe who smoked 20 cigars a day and ate Mcdonalds and lived to be 100. Genetics does play a part in the cards we are dealt as far as disease. Sometimes we survive in spite of our destructive and dangerous habits. ;)

For me, all it took to make sense was to look in my dogs mouth. Sharp teeth made for tearing and slicing meat, a jaw that moves only up and down, not side to side and no flat molars for grinding. Saliva that does not contain amylase, which is NECESSARY to break down the cellulose layer of fruits and veggies so that they can be digested. It just made sense to feed a meat based diet! When's the last time you saw a dog grazing in a corn field?! No? Then why feed them a corn (or other grain) filled diet?

As most people start becoming more aware of healthy eating habits, this has benefitted our pets. Many of us are not willing to feed our families a steady diet of cupcakes and cheeseburgers and other junk foods. Yet this is what we are satisfied feeding our pets?

For me, I wanted something better than junk food for Brody. I wanted fresh whole foods. Not processed, dry cereal that can sit on a shelf for a year and still be edible. I have been raw feeding for almost 3 years. I have seen the difference a raw diet can make. For me it was an easy choice. The best choice. My only regret is not feeding other dogs we have had through the years this way. I have NO doubt that their lives would have been better for it.
 

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All of us who feed raw also grew up hearing the horror stories of chicken bones splintering and causing death. Of course, that is always followed up by Farmer Brown who fed his dog chicken bones daily and the dog lived to be 23. Any dog can die from eating - be it kibble or raw.

I was scared to death the first time I fed my dogs a raw piece of chicken- with bone. Now, I love to hear the crunching of bones.

I always point out that wild canines don't belly up to the kibble bar :D

My two current dogs are my #4 and #5 raw fed. Tinsel, who is almost 6, still dances around in excitement when she sees her food dish. She grabs her food and does her thankyouthankyouthankyou wiggle before she starts to eat. Spacely, who has only been on raw a few weeks, now does his excited happy spin when I get his food dish. None of my kibble fed dogs ever were this enthusiastic about being fed.

Everyone has to do what they feel comfortable doing but for me and my dogs, raw just makes a whole lot of sense
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Thanks for the responses folks. And thanks for the links KittynKahlua, I'll check them out. I didn't think about the difference between raw and cooked bones. You're absolutely correct. A lot of wild animals eat bones, its their main source of calcium. Even non-carnivorous birds will eat pieces of them.

Re:
I will just add that of course your vet doesn't support raw. Why would he? He was given a couple hours of nutrition training in school at the MOST and it was funded (and even the textbooks were printed by) dog food companies. Either Purina, Hills, or Waltham provided his education. These companies also provide his business with prescription foods and he is given a kickback for using them.
Umm, actually, the vet I mentioned isn't my vet. She is one of the vets who works at the non-profit wildlife center where I work. We receive NO funding from ANY pet food companies. We are mostly funded by private donations. And she is very opinionated anyway. It wouldn't matter what some company tried to tell her, she would form her own beliefs based on her own learnings.

Re:
If raw bird bones splintered or caused damage to the insides of our dogs, there would be NO wolves. No coyotes. No foxes. No wild canids at all. Raw bones are soft and they are digested by the strong acid in the carnivores stomach.
This was my opinion too.

Re:
I'm glad your other dogs lived long lives. I'm sure we've all heard of Uncle Joe who smoked 20 cigars a day and ate Mcdonalds and lived to be 100. Genetics does play a part in the cards we are dealt as far as disease. Sometimes we survive in spite of our destructive and dangerous habits.
Very true. I was just hitting on the fact that the last three dogs I've had all lived past their "average" lifespan, and all were given the same diet. Since I don't believe in coincidences, I have to think there must be a connection. Not that the raw diet wouldn't have had the same effect, those dogs may have just been genetically sound enough to have long healthy lives....just saying.

Re:
All of us who feed raw also grew up hearing the horror stories of chicken bones splintering and causing death. Of course, that is always followed up by Farmer Brown who fed his dog chicken bones daily and the dog lived to be 23.
Actually, I was just thinking about farm dogs while typing this. True farm dogs are usually fed the left overs of whatever the farmer eats. They usually don't bother to buy pre-made dog foods, they would consider it unnecessary.

I was thinking of trying one of the pre-made raw diets like the Stella and Chewy's I've been reading about. There are a few places near me supposedly carry it, unlike the ZiwiPeak which has to be special ordered from the one place I found it. That would give my chi the raw diet, but in a convenient packaged form for me. I'm just not sure how expensive it is. I don't have much money anymore, its all tied up in my own past due medical bills (had breast cancer three years ago), and trying to save (yeah, right) to fix my run down leaky house.
I was wondering, a lot of the comments I hear about how great the raw food diet are from people who have been feeding it for a few years. Is there anyone out there who has been doing this long term, like ten years or more? To my scientific mind, that would give me a true idea of the long term effects versus the short term.

Thanks again for all the help. This is my first chi, and my first little breed of dog. I'm glad I found this forum.
 

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I started feeding my dogs raw in 1999. I had 2 rottweilers, both of who lived 8-9 years before cancer struck them. They were 2 when I switched them to raw from Innova. Prior to raw (and before I had the internet), previous dogs were English Springer Spaniels who ate Eukanuba. Over the course of about 15 years, we had them live on average about 11 years. They came to us at various ages.

When I started feeding raw, it was mainly chicken backs, organs and a veggie glop (various fruits/veggies in a food processor) and I put some apple cider vinegar on it. I also fed chicken quarters but pretty much they were on a chicken only diet with occasional other proteins.

Tinsel joined us in 2007 and there were so many more options available to us, not only in terms of quality kibble but also raw suppliers. It had been almost a year since we raw fed and I was not sure I was going to feed her raw (because of the veggie glop, it takes time to prepare). After revisiting various websites and reading, I knew I was going to feed her raw. Her first night home, at 12 weeks old, I gave her a raw chicken wing with the bones smashed with a hammer since I was not sure she could chew them. She has been the only puppy I have started on raw. That was the only time I smashed them. I also had her on the veggie glop for about a year until I stopped. There was just too much to convince me that she didn't really need them. Tinsel eats beef, pork, lamb, chicken, venison, turkey, rabbit, goat, fish...pretty much anything. She had shark once as well. She is a total goat nut. I am picking up some quail today.

Spacely joined us 3 weeks ago and he was switched to raw the day after he arrived. I don't know what he ate prior to coming to us but he loves his raw. He has some missing teeth and it has not stopped him from eating raw. So far, he has had chicken and pork.

My vet always comments on how healthy Tinsel is, how soft her coat is and she is amazed at how clean her teeth are (You do a really good job brushing them!) Her comment is always "Keep up with what you are doing"

Tinsel has no doggy odor or dog breath, her poop is about the size of my thumb (she is 43 lbs), it doesn't stink and she rarely has gas. If I don't pick up the back yard, within a short period of time, her poop turns completely white and crumbles. Raw fed poop is incredibly easy to clean up.

Spacely is loosing his doggy odor, his poop is considerably smaller, no longer smelly and he is not as gassy as he was. He is also losing his dog breath.

Since I have fed raw for so long, I have to say I am just in horrified awe when I see the HUGE amount of nasty, smelly poop that is left behind by kibble fed dogs. I think I would seriously gag if I had to pick up and cart that around on our walks.

I find raw to be incredibly easy to feed. Take bag of food out of freezer, defrost. Place in bowl, put in front of dog. I put them in individual bags but you don't have to. I am picking up about 12 lbs of various ground meats today (with bone) and I will put some in patties for Tinsel while I freeze cookie scoops for Spacely. I do weigh before I freeze because I tend to over estimate on weights and then I get a chunky Tinsel.

There are various raw feeding groups on yahoo.groups. I know I belong to RAW-Lite and I used to belong to rawfeeding. You can find all kinds of people there who feed various incarnations of raw, a mixed diet and all breeds of dogs who can answer how it has worked for them. Some people supplement, some don't. Some feed ground with bone, some don't. Some feed whole prey, some don't.
 

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Hi everyone. I'm confused about doing the raw diet thing. I've had my chi for about 1 1/2 weeks. He was found so I have no idea what he was fed before, only that he was in good shape and his teeth were very white. They actually don't seem as bright white now as when I first got him, but he doesn't seem interested in eating much of the dry food I give him. He wants canned, which I can't see him having been raised on and still have such white teeth. He keeps wanting to eat my cats' food. All my years growing up, I heard over and over from everyone, NEVER feed a dog chicken bones, or other small similar bones as they splinter and can get caught in the dogs intestinal tract and cause damage. Now I'm reading about all this raw food diet stuff which consists of giving the dog whole foods such as chicken...bones and all. I asked one of the vets where I work, and she doesn't believe in it. Her opinion (and its just that, an opinion) is, that over the years, a lot of scientific research has gone into the formulation and production of the different brands of dog food to make it healthier for the dogs. (I don't mean the really cheap stuff, I know that's no good). And that a natural, whole, raw diet is fine for a wild "natural" canine. But that most of our modern dogs (in her opinion, especially types like chihuahuas) are far from 'natural'. That they no longer have the systems for this type of diet. Also, even though wild dogs are considered carnivores, they are in fact incidental omnivores. They get plant materials in their diets by eating the stomach contents of the herbivores they prey on. My last three dogs have all been raised on Pedigree. My basset hound mix lived to be just over 16 in great health. My rough collie lived to be over 14 years with no health problems. The great dane I have now just turned 9 and still acts like he's 4 or 5. Her suggestion is 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it'. I'm pretty sure I can't afford these specialty diets like ZiwiPeak or others, even if I can find it in my area (which I highly doubt). But the raw stuff with the bones scares me. *Note*, I am only thinking about the chi's diet, not the dane's. At 9 years old, I'm not switching anything on him.
Hi! :D

I see most of the raw feeders have commented here.
I don't personally feed raw to my small dogs nor would I :D
There are a few of us here who don't for varying reasons, the whole raw vs kibble debate is very political, at the end of the day you need to go with your gut and decide what is best for YOUR little guy!

I think IIRC there are a few people here who tried raw and needed to take dogs off it for some reason, I don't get on here very much anymore, SOO busy lately! but I think one of them may have been Cheryl, the lady who has Leila & Finn. I think TLI might have had a food based issue as well but she can correct me if I am wrong.

There are many excellent kibbles available! there are a few independent websites that rate them as well, I don't have the links offhand but I am sure someone else will post them. So in a nutshell there is no right or wrong way to feed your dog, so don't feel badly if someone does not agree with you!

I've also had older dogs who ate questionable foods and thrived to ripe old ages! at the end of the day most of this is semantics, a good rule of thumb is to provide your dog with the best diet you can afford. I've seen the pre-made raws at the dog boutique I go to, if I wanted to feed raw with a Chi, I would probably go that route (just my opinion of course)

I also think you are onto something about not changing anything about your older dogs diet, they can be sensitive with age and not react well to changes.
If you do a quick search on the forum you can pull up tons of threads about various dog foods and the opinions of those who feed them :D

Hope that helped a wee bit whatever you decide to feed!
 

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I agree with what others have said about doing what YOU are comfortable with. The first time I gave Brody a chicken wing, he crunched down on the bone and I snatched it from his mouth and threw it in the trash. It took me awhile to 'build up' to doing raw. I went through pre-mades first. Saw the difference those made and then slowly did more research and finally decided to dive in. Was it scary? Sure. It's a whole different way of thinking about nutrition.

It also takes some fortitude and preparation to do a raw diet. Many raw feeders do some pre-mades just for the convenience of it. We are all busy. We all have lives outside our dogs. Sometimes I barely have time to shop for myself so being able to take a pre-made raw nugget out of the freezer, or throw some ZiwiPeak in a bowl is a lifesaver.

I think of raw as being similar to breast feeding. I'm sure we can all agree that nature's model is correct and best. Breast milk is best for our human babies. But should we feel guilty if we can't and use a good quality formula? Don't formula fed babies grow fine and do OK? Of course they do. It's similar with feeding our dogs. I prefer to feed a natural, un-processed raw diet because it is natures model. I feel that it is best. I am on a raw feeding yahoo list where there are over 22,000 people who feel the same way. It's a great list if anyone is interested in learning more about raw feeding. There are people on the list who have been successfully feeding raw for 20 years or more and have bred generation after generation of healthy raw fed dogs.

Having said that, I do want to caution people about jumping into a raw diet. Research! Read! Talk to people who do it. Form your own opinions. Learn for yourself. Don't take anyone's word for it. The internet is full of opinions - form your own. Then if you DO choose to raw feed, do it right. You can't just throw a raw hamburger to your dog and call it good. There is a balance that is required. I use prey model, which is 80% meat, 10% bone, and 10% organ with 5% of that being liver. I would rather see people feed a substandard kibble than a substandard raw diet. If you aren't willing to put in the time to research the diet, then feed something else.
 

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Thanks for the responses folks. And thanks for the links KittynKahlua, I'll check them out. I didn't think about the difference between raw and cooked bones. You're absolutely correct. A lot of wild animals eat bones, its their main source of calcium. Even non-carnivorous birds will eat pieces of them.

Re:


Umm, actually, the vet I mentioned isn't my vet. She is one of the vets who works at the non-profit wildlife center where I work. We receive NO funding from ANY pet food companies. We are mostly funded by private donations. And she is very opinionated anyway. It wouldn't matter what some company tried to tell her, she would form her own beliefs based on her own learnings.

Re:


This was my opinion too.

Re:


Very true. I was just hitting on the fact that the last three dogs I've had all lived past their "average" lifespan, and all were given the same diet. Since I don't believe in coincidences, I have to think there must be a connection. Not that the raw diet wouldn't have had the same effect, those dogs may have just been genetically sound enough to have long healthy lives....just saying.

Re:


Actually, I was just thinking about farm dogs while typing this. True farm dogs are usually fed the left overs of whatever the farmer eats. They usually don't bother to buy pre-made dog foods, they would consider it unnecessary.

I was thinking of trying one of the pre-made raw diets like the Stella and Chewy's I've been reading about. There are a few places near me supposedly carry it, unlike the ZiwiPeak which has to be special ordered from the one place I found it. That would give my chi the raw diet, but in a convenient packaged form for me. I'm just not sure how expensive it is. I don't have much money anymore, its all tied up in my own past due medical bills (had breast cancer three years ago), and trying to save (yeah, right) to fix my run down leaky house.

Thanks again for all the help. This is my first chi, and my first little breed of dog. I'm glad I found this forum.


If you want to feed Stella and Chewy's but are unsure about the cost, you can always stretch out the bag by adding cooked/raw meats to it, or feeding raw a few meals per week. I used to do this ZiwiPeak.


I also wanted to add something: I am on my way to vet school, and I know that at least here in Oregon, you don't even TAKE animal nutrition while at vet school. It is a one class requirement you must take during your undergrad years to be admitted to vet school. I don't know if that is the case everywhere.
 

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We've been feeding raw (both prey model & premades like Stella & Chewy's, ZiwiPeak & Honest Kitchen--we constantly mix it up from month to month) for almost 2 years. I just want to add a couple things... Some people "jump" onto the prey model raw bandwagon not fully educated. There *can* be a detox period and a learning curb which do tend to scare those who don't expect it away from raw. That's why it's important to research research research first. :)

Secondly, since I can't really add anything to what the other raw feeders have said...I'm just going to add in this pic like I always do now to topics like these. Maya came to us being fed one of the grocery store kibbles. While the second pic was taking 1 1/2yrs after being switched...she had the different look to her within a few months. Nothing was altered in the pics--same lighting conditions...not major editing done. Just shows what a obvious difference it can make.

Good luck to you & your decision!


 

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I am a middle-of-the-roader! I feed Ziwipeak. Hubby and I both work outside the home full time and I am a complete neat-freak/germaphobe so raw seems less practical for me, for now.

Of course you can get it (and Stella & Chewy's and MANY other high quality foods) in Miami. I order it online.

I get it here first:
ZiwiPeak ZiwiPeak Daily-Dog Cuisine Venison Real Meat Dry Dog Food | PetFlow.com
2 bags will earn you free shipping.

Next, I order from here and guess where they are located?? MIAMI!!:
Dog Store Miami | Dog Food Miami
I'd LOVE the opportunity to check out their store. Perhaps you can!

As for the vet. My vet is highly acclaimed and has in excess of 25 years in vet medicine and he regularly says that I know FAR more (and I am still new to this) about pet nutrition than he. He had never even heard of the food nor treats that I have chosen for the girls. I have researched, read, tried and explored. My vet is humble enough to know that I am not going to take his word or anecdotal evidence when it comes to their health and nutrition. I study things out for myself. It sounds like you will do the same!

I fed our boy kibble thinking I was giving him a high quality brand. I was not. I know that now and I bear the guilt of knowing that had I studied more that his life would have been extended and his health would have been much better. I am doing things differently with and for our girls.

I wholeheartedly agree with the others that you have to do what is best for you, your babies and your lifestyle.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks again for all the input everyone. There is a big part of me that does think a diet the way nature intended is the best. But then again, I also know an animal in the wild has access to a much wider variety of food items, and therefore a much greater nutritional intake than what we can always provide. That's when I lean toward the kibble with its added vitamins and minerals. Even in the wildlife center where I work, the animals diets have to be supplemented. Like the fish eating birds, because they're fed pre-killed fish that has been frozen, and the freezing process destroys the Thiamine naturally present, we have to add the vitamin B to the fish we give them. In the wild, eating live fish they would get this automatically.
Then there's the cost. Both for the prey model and the pre-mades. To have to keep in stock such a wide variety of meat products seems like more than I can afford now. With the kibbles, I can get a bag of Pedigree for $5 that will last me a month. There's no way $5 will get me a month's worth of chicken, beef, pork, and other meats. Especially if they're organic, natural cuts, and exotic. Right now I can barely afford to feed myself, and sometimes I skip a meal to make sure my animals have theirs. I guess I'll keep researching, and compiling pros and cons and then in the future (near future hopefully), I'll be able to do better nutrition wise for my little guy. As long as he still seems healthy, I'll try not to fret over it to much.
 

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Thanks again for all the input everyone. There is a big part of me that does think a diet the way nature intended is the best. But then again, I also know an animal in the wild has access to a much wider variety of food items, and therefore a much greater nutritional intake than what we can always provide. That's when I lean toward the kibble with its added vitamins and minerals. Even in the wildlife center where I work, the animals diets have to be supplemented. Like the fish eating birds, because they're fed pre-killed fish that has been frozen, and the freezing process destroys the Thiamine naturally present, we have to add the vitamin B to the fish we give them. In the wild, eating live fish they would get this automatically.
Then there's the cost. Both for the prey model and the pre-mades. To have to keep in stock such a wide variety of meat products seems like more than I can afford now. With the kibbles, I can get a bag of Pedigree for $5 that will last me a month. There's no way $5 will get me a month's worth of chicken, beef, pork, and other meats. Especially if they're organic, natural cuts, and exotic. Right now I can barely afford to feed myself, and sometimes I skip a meal to make sure my animals have theirs. I guess I'll keep researching, and compiling pros and cons and then in the future (near future hopefully), I'll be able to do better nutrition wise for my little guy. As long as he still seems healthy, I'll try not to fret over it to much.
You have it right! you do the best you can with what you have.
is Pedigree the best food out there? nope.
Is your dog going to die from eating it for a few months or a year? nope!
at the end of the day, even pedigree has the basic necessary ingredients to sustain a dog. (some will disagree with that but whatever)
There are much more important things relating to owning a dog than just what you feed it! you clearly care about your dog otherwise you would not even be asking for this info. If your dog is doing well thats all that matters here.

If it makes you feel any better I had an old dog who for years refused to eat anything other than Purina little bites LOL and that food is much worse than Pedigree. :D I eventually managed to switch him over to a better food but it took me quite some time, that dog incidentally lived until 19, and just passed on this summer.
 

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I apologize it you already know about these sites or if you were already provided the links. They are 2 independent rating sites for dog and cat food. I find them very helpful!

You can checkout any brands that you are thinking of getting (type name in search box) and see ingredients, how many stars they receive for quality and such. Or you can search by 4-6 star foods.

Dog Food Reviews | Dog Food Ratings

Dog Food Reviews - Main Index - Powered by ReviewPost
 

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FYI: premades are complete foods & have added vitamins & minerals...similar to kibble. I personally believe the correct amount of meat, bone & organ no matter the source (there are many wild animals who have limited prey their entire lives) provide the correct vitamins & minerals. HOWEVER I do know most raw feeders add a supplement such as Nupro & salmon/coconut/etc oils a few times a week as well..."just in case".

I don't care what anyone says or how cheap it is...a dog would NOT be better off on Pedigree. Pedigree contains things in it that can harm animals! There are maaaany better choices out there...even as far as kibble goes. Premium foods may have a bigger sticker price but the serving size is less as they don't require as much as most grocery store brands to equal the same nutrition. And in the long run your $5 per month of pedigree would add up in vet bills because of other complications. Even if they seem to be doing okay on it now (I hate when people say this--it's equal to a smoker saying "I don't have any problems from smoking now do I?"..then years down the road they die of lung cancer--not so surprising right?). Well...same goes for what is in our pets...and OUR foods at that. So the "they are doing ok on it so I won't worry" doesn't really pan out so well!

But if you're unsure on getting the required nutrition from prey model...but want to feed the best for your pet & "what nature intended"...premades are the way to go. ZiwiPeak & Stella & Chewy's (IMO) are the best choices out there as far as that goes. Ziwi even has the added fish oils, as well as vitamins & minerals & has nothing else but your prey! S&C's has something like 5% fruits & veggies but also has the moisture which is a plus. Though I always add water to our ZP to give them the moisture they need to process it. But ZP is easy to feed...as easy as kibble. Pricey yes but worth it in the long run when you look at vet bills & over all health of your dog.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Pedigree contains things in it that can harm animals! There are maaaany better choices out there...even as far as kibble goes.
As was said by others, what's good or bad for one dog isn't always the same for another. If you read my original post on this thread you'll note that my last three dogs were all raised on Pedigree, and not only did they live beyond their respective average lifespans, they did so with no major health problems whatsoever.


Premium foods may have a bigger sticker price but the serving size is less as they don't require as much as most grocery store brands to equal the same nutrition.
This may be true in some or most cases, but its that bigger sticker price that I cannot afford. When you have thousands in past due medical bills, and your house is falling down around you, and you make half what you used to, you have to go by what money you have in your pocket at the time. The premium foods may be worth the higher price, but that doesn't matter when you don't have the money to buy it.


And in the long run your $5 per month of pedigree would add up in vet bills because of other complications. Even if they seem to be doing okay on it now (I hate when people say this--it's equal to a smoker saying "I don't have any problems from smoking now do I?"..then years down the road they die of lung cancer--not so surprising right?). Well...same goes for what is in our pets...and OUR foods at that. So the "they are doing ok on it so I won't worry" doesn't really pan out so well!
As I noted, all my other dogs that were raised on Pedigree lived very long lives with no complications at all. That's over 16 years for one, then over 14 years for another, and my current oldest...a great dane who just turned 9 and still acts like he's 5 without ever being sick a day in his life. In fact when he was younger, I would try to give him pieces of raw meats as a treat and he would either refuse them, or throw them up after eating them. He has also thrown up after trying a couple of the 'premium' foods. He has never thrown up while eating Pedigree. As far as comparing it to our foods, even that has changed over the years as to what's good for us and what's bad. Soy used to be considered good. Now we know its actually bad in many ways. It was a major contributor in my getting breast cancer before the age of 50 (I was vegetarian for many years and the soy products were a main part of my diet).


But if you're unsure on getting the required nutrition from prey model...but want to feed the best for your pet & "what nature intended"...premades are the way to go. ZiwiPeak & Stella & Chewy's (IMO) are the best choices out there as far as that goes.
I do still want to at least look for the S&C so I have an idea of the overall cost vs amount used. I like the fact it does have some fruit and veggies as wild canines would get this without knowing it by eating the stomachs of the herbivores they prey on. It is part of their diet, they just don't actively seek it. ZP seems a little harder to find in my area, but I'll keep looking.


There are much more important things relating to owning a dog than just what you feed it! you clearly care about your dog otherwise you would not even be asking for this info. If your dog is doing well thats all that matters here.
I agree.


If it makes you feel any better I had an old dog who for years refused to eat anything other than Purina little bites LOL and that food is much worse than Pedigree. I eventually managed to switch him over to a better food but it took me quite some time, that dog incidentally lived until 19, and just passed on this summer.
Kind of goes to show, what's meant to be will be.
 

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Everyone has given great advice on the nutritional standpoint. I love dogfoodanalysis.com for ratings. That'll give you an evaluation of Pedigree too that isn't bias, but actually will break down and evaluate the ingredients.
But I'll also chime in about cost. Taste of The Wild, if you can get it near you, is pretty inexpensive. A 5lb bag is about $11 here... and you need to keep in mind that with a higher quality food, you need to feed LESS of it because there's no fillers. So cost-wise you still end up buying it less often. I actually have an open bag of it and if you would like I'd be happy to mail you a ziplock baggy with a sample so you can try it. We just keep it on hand for emergencies, if power goes out or we have to travel and can't bring our freezer LOL. It's one of the only cheap brands out there that is also a 6-Star food.
 

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Everyone has given great advice on the nutritional standpoint. I love dogfoodanalysis.com for ratings. That'll give you an evaluation of Pedigree too that isn't bias, but actually will break down and evaluate the ingredients.
But I'll also chime in about cost. Taste of The Wild, if you can get it near you, is pretty inexpensive. A 5lb bag is about $11 here. It's one of the only cheap brands out there that is also a 6-Star food.
EXACTLY. That is what I tried to say.
 

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I understand being broke. I make barely over minimum wage, granted I do not have a lot of medical bills. But in the long run, a better food will save you money.

Are you sure you can't switch to Taste of the Wild, or something similar? That $11 bag of food will last you a lot longer than a bag of Pedigree. Think of it this way: Yes, you can eat at Taco Bell or McDonalds for very cheap every day, but you are not going to feel full for long or healthy. Or, you could buy grocery store food and make every meal at home, no junk food, etc. By eating healthy food, you are creating less waste because your body uses all of the nutrients. I hope that makes sense.

And yes, your dog may have thrown up the raw meat or premium food, but there is a reason why. Kibble and raw food digest at different rates. If fed too close together, they can cause tummy upset. Feeding a premium food without slowly introducing it can cause tummy problems as well.

I used to feed my chihuahuas Orijen or Acana kibble. A 6.6 lb bag was between 18-22 dollars, depending on the flavor. That bag lasted me 2-3 months, with TWO dogs. That comes down to about $10 a month for food.
 
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