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Discussion Starter #1
if my dogs weren't itching and their poop was ok, the food was "working" for them.

But after joining this forum and getting a little more educated, I'm seeing that there are other signs that food may not be working either.

I've recently tried grain free for my guys. Started with Fromm (Surf and Turf and Game bird) and my dogs ate it "ok"--but not with any enthusiasm. Which still baffles me because they would get so excited over their Duck/sweet potato 4 star food.

So then I picked up some Natural Balance Alpa Chicken/Lamb/Rabbit. I grabbed two bags because I got a really good deal on it. Well first bag went ok, but I did notice my golden threw up a couple of times, some undigested/chewed food. Not much, with more water.

This morning, he did the same thing. Could it just be a thing? Or could it be a slight reaction to the food? He just had a check up, so healthwise, he is doing great.

Then my little dog's eyes have junk in them. She doesn't always have this, but has had some in the past. I never linked it to food, but am wondering if that could be from this after reading some other symptoms of aggrevations of certain foods on other threads.

Our lab seems to be fine with no questions.

But again, they are not eating this food with gusto either. (not saying that is a bad thing--but they are typically enthusiastic eaters).

Has anyone had dogs not do well on GF? Or have I just not found "the one" yet?
 

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I've been trying Back 2 Basics with Luke and I'm not really that happy with the results. He's got some serious eye goopers right now. It's a 5 star GF food. I had no intention of keeping him on it as I'm rotating food and this one happens to be much more expensive than I want to pay, but I had a bunch of good coupons and free sample vouchers and I wanted to try their pork formula. He also does not do good on TOTW Pacific Stream, he gets itchy and his ears are dirtier, which is opposite from what I've read are usual results...but I've tried it a couple different times. And I wan't happy with TOTW Wetlands. But TOTW High Prarie and Sierra Mountain he does fabulous on! So basically...I think it definitely depends on the individual dog and the ingredients. I'm learning this am I'm learning to rotate foods for now 2 dogs.
 

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So basically...I think it definitely depends on the individual dog and the ingredients.
There are a lot of high quality foods out there now but not every food will work for every dog. Unfortunately it can be a bit of blindly choosing from several high quality foods until you find the one or few that work well for your dog.

My dog did okay on Acana but his poops were never as solid as I would have liked. He's doing much better on Blue Wilderness. I like Champion better as a company though so we will probably give Orijen a try next.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks guys. I started TOTW tonight. My last "grain free" attempt and if this doesn't go over well, it's back to grain inclusive I go. :) They ate it with gusto, so that is a positive. Just hope there is no throwing up or eye goop, etc on this. :)
 

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Is raw an option? Some dogs just can't handle all the processing that is done in kibble.
 

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Is raw an option? Some dogs just can't handle all the processing that is done in kibble.
It's really not for me, at this time. One reason is, my husband would have me feeding them kibbles and bits if he had it his way--and I think that would put him right over the edge!

We also have a 2 year old and he is fanatical (as am I) about cleaning up our own raw meat, so I think that is another strike in his book. Plus, there is no way he would feed them that if that is what they were fed and I'm not home. They would go hungry first.

For simplicity purposes, I need to stick with kibble. But first, I need one that works--and preferrably for all 3 dogs, though my golden is the reason for the searching. But surprises me my jrt is showing negative effects as she is not typically sensitive.

I was simply trying to find a food with higher protein as he is almost 10 and I thought he would benefit from the protein. On the positive though, I have noticed he doesn't seem so stiff since trying the GF--though he is far from cripple--just not as spry as he once was.

Thank you for the thought....I'm not anti-raw, just not for us at this time. :)
 

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Totally makes sense.

Well I am so sorry you are having issues. It can be really stressful to find a food that works, especially since you have to go through the transition time and then give it a few weeks. I have also heard that seniors can benefit from higher protein (I wonder if its the same for humans lol). If the grain-free thing doesn't work out, I wonder what higher quality grain-inclusive foods have the highest amount of meat based protein. Maybe like a limited ingredient diet.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Totally makes sense.

Well I am so sorry you are having issues. It can be really stressful to find a food that works, especially since you have to go through the transition time and then give it a few weeks. I have also heard that seniors can benefit from higher protein (I wonder if its the same for humans lol). If the grain-free thing doesn't work out, I wonder what higher quality grain-inclusive foods have the highest amount of meat based protein. Maybe like a limited ingredient diet.
Maybe so...I honestly haven't thought that far ahead, but guess I should start looking. Thanks for the thought! I'll check limited ingredient diets to see what is out there with a good protein. :) Thanks again!
 

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Like Gally said, not every food works for every dog. No one said it on this thread but I've read people saying a certain food is crap because it doesn't work for their dog. If it's a crappy quality food, understandable but not when it's a good food.
 

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What's the connection between diet and eye boogers? I've never heard about his before. Lately, Mercy's had them a lot. I just thought that the house was dusty.
 

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My research so far. I have tried different foods because my doberman has allergies. His signs= gas, eye discharge, and constantly trying to 'wipe' his face on you. I am beginning to think that it is just more than grains, but a meat based allergy. The problem is this. Just because the label says one type of protein does not mean other proteins are not used in the food. Even the 5 stars foods do this. For instance, you buy a lamb and rice food and about 5 ingredients in, is say fish meal. Chicken fat used on a bison base food. It would be so much easier if the manufacturers would stick to the type of protein on the label.

Of course it does not help that he goes up and down the hay bales scratching himself. This is probably not good for his allergies. I see the Advantage commercial where the dog is in the plastic tubes and I wonder how much that would be to install.

My next bag is going to be Wellness limited ingredient.

Added to this mix- a trip to the petstore over the weekend. Food reps were there. Some of the stuff that they were trying to tell me! It ended by me walking away from them. Plus they had no free samples to try- due to cost and I understand-but they did not even have coupons. I was told to go home and visit the websites to see if coupons were offered.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Like Gally said, not every food works for every dog. No one said it on this thread but I've read people saying a certain food is crap because it doesn't work for their dog. If it's a crappy quality food, understandable but not when it's a good food.
Understand completely! Fromm has been one of the best foods for us--but they snubbed the Grain free. I still know it's an awesome food, but for some reason, my guys weren't thrilled with 2 of the GF flavors. Fine by me, still a great food, but I'll move on to the next one and see if we have better results. :)

And if this frustration keeps up--I'll go back to Fromm (grain inclusives) and leave the proteins/etc where we were because my dogs weren't doing poorly on it, by any means--I was just trying to be proactive and do all I could to help my golden age as gracefully as possible! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #14
What's the connection between diet and eye boogers? I've never heard about his before. Lately, Mercy's had them a lot. I just thought that the house was dusty.
I'd like to know more, as well. I've seen it mentioned a time or two on here-- and found it odd that my little dog has some gunk, all of a sudden. I'm not finding a whole lot by googling, so far.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
My research so far. I have tried different foods because my doberman has allergies. His signs= gas, eye discharge, and constantly trying to 'wipe' his face on you. I am beginning to think that it is just more than grains, but a meat based allergy. The problem is this. Just because the label says one type of protein does not mean other proteins are not used in the food. Even the 5 stars foods do this. For instance, you buy a lamb and rice food and about 5 ingredients in, is say fish meal. Chicken fat used on a bison base food. It would be so much easier if the manufacturers would stick to the type of protein on the label.

Of course it does not help that he goes up and down the hay bales scratching himself. This is probably not good for his allergies. I see the Advantage commercial where the dog is in the plastic tubes and I wonder how much that would be to install.

My next bag is going to be Wellness limited ingredient.

Added to this mix- a trip to the petstore over the weekend. Food reps were there. Some of the stuff that they were trying to tell me! It ended by me walking away from them. Plus they had no free samples to try- due to cost and I understand-but they did not even have coupons. I was told to go home and visit the websites to see if coupons were offered.
My last two experiences with food reps were not good either.

The first was a Blue Buffalo rep. Sweet kid--literally--must've been a college kid making a little extra $ by reading to me from the brochure when I asked him a question. Needless to say, I didn't leave with Blue. ;)

Then the next one was a Nutro rep--and no offense to anyone, but I'm not a Nutro fan and she very rudely interrupted a conversation DH and I were having, so I shut her down before she could give her spill.

There is SO much to consider. My dog has some allergies as well, but I don't know exactly to what as he hasn't been tested. I avoid the corn/soybean/wheat foods and he seems to do fine on the higher quality grain inclusive foods. Thank goodness because at this point, I don't know if he's going to let me do Grain free! lol.
 

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Haha! must have been the same reps. Sounds just like my shopping trip. I was told that even if my dog is allergic to chicken that it would not be allergic to the chicken fat that was used in their food. HUH? I am sure there would be some meat left on the chicken fat while it is being processed.
The other was corn. I was told just the tiny little white part of the corn was used during the process plant. WHAT? Did they use an exacto knife and a magnifying glass when harvesting just the white part of the corn. And then the rep told me that dogs who have an allergy to corn, will not be allergic to this. Did not buy into that either!
 

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Haha! must have been the same reps. Sounds just like my shopping trip. I was told that even if my dog is allergic to chicken that it would not be allergic to the chicken fat that was used in their food. HUH? I am sure there would be some meat left on the chicken fat while it is being processed.
The other was corn. I was told just the tiny little white part of the corn was used during the process plant. WHAT? Did they use an exacto knife and a magnifying glass when harvesting just the white part of the corn. And then the rep told me that dogs who have an allergy to corn, will not be allergic to this. Did not buy into that either!
LOL. Gotta love those that believe everything they are taught to tell! lol. Bless their hearts!!!
 

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Eye goop! Biscuit used to have tons of it, even with daily Claritin, when she was eating TOTW High Prairie, which I still think is a really good food. But the eye goop and a couple of barfing incidents and general gassiness made me think maybe something wasn't quite right. We tried the Wetlands version, which is all poultry, and Biscuit got really itchy, so I decided that maybe there's some sort of low-level poultry intolerance going on. Who knows if that's actually what the problem is, but we switched to Acana Ranchlands, grain-free with red meat and fish but no poultry, and the eye goop is drastically decreased and her stomach seems much more settled.

We put her on grain-free in the first place because she was so itchy eating Wellness puppy food (and she didn't like the taste, but that's a separate issue). I still think TOTW is great, and I liked the price much more than the price of Acana, but I am convinced that Acana is working better for her right now. Maybe the issue all along was poultry, not grains. I think you have to go with what works for your pup.
 

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Like Gally said, not every food works for every dog. No one said it on this thread but I've read people saying a certain food is crap because it doesn't work for their dog. If it's a crappy quality food, understandable but not when it's a good food.
So annoying! Right? I hate hearing" Omg Blue Buffalo SUCKS it gave my dog diarrhea! Stay away from this brand!" Lol.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thanks for sharing that hamandeggs!

I'm seriously considering going back to ole faithful and forgetting about the grain free. They looked great on it and were doing well on the rotation I had them on, I was just trying to do the best I could for them (but especially my senior golden!). This is driving me NUTS! lol.
 
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