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Discussion Starter #1
Ok, i like to think im pretty good at picking grain free foods (something i have been doing since i got Izze all of those years ago)but im afraid that i dont have much experience with choosing grain inclusive foods :redface: I know there are a lot of experts with more experience then me, so how do i pick a GOOD grain inclusive food & what ingredients do i look for & which do I avoid? also since mine have been eating grain free for so long will they eat grain inclusive (Buddy will since he is a chow hound LMBO). I like variety & grain free is harder to come by so I was entertaining the thought of trying natures variety prairie line. also i like to feed stella & chewies freeze dried raw, would i be able to do what with a grain inclusive kibble or would it be back to canned?
 

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Just look for a lot of meat and no nasty ingredients. Same thing you would look for in a grain-free but with grains instead of potatoes. I don't think you could go wrong with Prairie.

You can feed freeze-dried foods whenever you want to. Why would it be any different with a grain-inclusive food? They're good as treats, too.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
i dont know, i thought they were technically 'raw' like as in same as raw feeding so i was going to make sure they didnt digest differently or something. i looked at Prairie & every one of their foods has a named meat meal listed as the first ingredient, meals i know are meat concentrates so tthat is a good thing. plus i like the NV line of foods so far, how about Merrick's line of grain inclusive foods? my dogs loved the canned versions of their foods (the ones with the cute names....... even Izze could eat them NP)
 

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I've heard varying reports about Merrick. I did get BG for my ferret and he seems to do well on it, but that's my only experience. The foods do sound yummy, LOL---"Grammy's Pot Pie", "Cowboy Cookout", etc. Whole Earth Farms (also made by Merrick) isn't bad.

Yeah, freeze-dried food is raw. But if you're going to mix raw and kibble it doesn't matter if the kibble is grain-free or not. I don't have a problem with mixing raw and kibble anyway.

LOL, I realized I can't think of a lot of top-quality grain-inclusive foods. Pinnacle? Canidae? I think the trend is toward grain-free so that's where a lot of the companies are going.
 

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Whole Earth Farms, while reasonably priced, gave my mastiff horrible horrible gas. Every dog is different, but I know a few people who can not feed that because of this reason.

I would look for a food that lists more meat products than grain products before the first fat source. Even if you are feeding a grain food, that doesn't mean it should be MOSTLY grain. Have you ever heard of splitting? Its when they split an ingredient and list it several times:

Example: chicken, chicken meal, brown rice, rice flour, rice middlings, rice hulls, chicken fat, etc.

While chicken is the first two ingredients, there is actually much more rice in this food because when you add up all the different rice named, its adds up to much more than the chicken.

So, look for a food that has more meat than grain. Make sure its a named meat source (should not say meat meal or poultry meal), no bht or bha preservatives, no menidione bisodium sulfite, etc.

Just read the ingredient label and make sure its natural stuff.
 

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I currently feed grain-inclusive kibble and have always done so. I won't feed a kibble that includes corn, wheat, or soy (though I'm not opposed to these ingredients in small quantities, such as in treats), but other grains such as barley and rice are ok with me. I always check the ingredient list to make sure that meat is the first and main ingredient. Kit probably wins about half of the kibble she eats, so we aren't too picky on brands, as long as it's quality stuff (the really crappy stuff I donate). I have tried several different grain-inclusive kibbles: Wellness Super Mix, Go!, Solid Gold, Castor and Pollux. One warning with the C&P is to feed a lot less than you think you need! If I was looking for something a little cheaper, I'd look at Diamond Naturals, or Natural Balance.
 

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Ok, i like to think im pretty good at picking grain free foods (something i have been doing since i got Izze all of those years ago)but im afraid that i dont have much experience with choosing grain inclusive foods :redface: I know there are a lot of experts with more experience then me, so how do i pick a GOOD grain inclusive food & what ingredients do i look for & which do I avoid? also since mine have been eating grain free for so long will they eat grain inclusive (Buddy will since he is a chow hound LMBO). I like variety & grain free is harder to come by so I was entertaining the thought of trying natures variety prairie line. also i like to feed stella & chewies freeze dried raw, would i be able to do what with a grain inclusive kibble or would it be back to canned?
Hi. Look for formulas with pearled barley, brown rice, oats or pearled millet. All great sources of nutrition. There is a lot of back and forth regarding various corn products. In my opinion they are not all bad but on the other hand, manufacturers don't/shouldn't need to add corn products to an every day maintenance/reg. activity formula. There are also non nutritional issues with corn like gmo and socio-environmental issues.

In regards to ingredient splitting and distribution. No one knows unless they'v actually got the numbers from the manufacturer. A formula listing a single source of meat proteins first *can* still be the dominant ingredient after all the grains are added. Some are, many aren't. I kind'a like what FirstMate are doing with their grain free formulas. The have a single source approach to proteins and carbohydrates and are not the least ashamed to list potato (not various potato products but potato) as their #1 ingredient before chicken meal. The animal protein level is still 84% though. It's honest and in the end probably more balanced than many other formulas since they maintain proven nutrient/mineral levels.
 

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Take a look at Prairie, Earthborn Holistics, Acana's grain inclusive line and Annamaet
 

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Fromm! For sure is one of the top, IMO. Some formulas can be a bit busy, so if you have an allergy-prone dog... may not be the best. But a very very reputable company and some good formulas, both grain inclusive and grain free.

Jackson's been doing very well on Acana Singles, which contains oat, I believe.

Earthborn has some decent grain inclusive formulas.... I know there's a lot more but having a brain fart.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
i have a while to go before i will need grain inclusive but i think i will go with prairie when its time since they are all ready on the NV line
 
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