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I've currently got my pup really enjoying Fromm Grain Free Game Bird Recipe, but this is very expensive. We've been through several foods that he just didn't seem to like. I'm thinking of trying to experiment with some new foods that would be grain free and comparable in price to TOTW. I'm considering Earthborn Holistics but see that the first ingredient is a meal rather than straight protein. This seems to be the case with a lot of the grain-free foods in this price range.

Is it better to feed a food that is a straight protein rather than a meal? Can someone explain the pros/cons of feeding a meal? I'm confused :(
 

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Meal just means that it's dried and ground up. There's actually much more protein in a meat meal than just the meat (the meat includes the water weight). For most purposes it's best to see both a named meat and a named meat meal as the top 2 ingredients.
 

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As long as the meal is named, it's okay. By named, I mean "chicken meal" as opposed to "poultry meal". "Poultry" is any bird.
 

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Yup, I would have no objection at all to a meat meal as the first ingredient. I honestly don't even care if a food has any fresh meats in the first couple ingredients because when the water weight is considered it would be much lower on the list anyway. Meat meals are where the most substantial source of animal protein will always be coming from.
 

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As long as the meal is named, it's okay. By named, I mean "chicken meal" as opposed to "poultry meal". "Poultry" is any bird.
Any bird as long as it's chicken or turkey :p (according to the guidelines). I honestly wouldn't mind seeing "poultry meal" (I wouldn't want to see "meat meal", though), but I have never seen that in a pet food. I have seen "poultry by-product meal" but never "poultry meal".
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Can someone explain why so many foods on the dog food advisor website that have "meal" listed as the first ingredient can be given five stars then?
 

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A named meat meal is a GOOD thing. It means that whatever type of meat it is actually makes up a larger portion of the food (since ingredients are listed in proportion order) than a named meat that hasn't had the water removed.

Basically as an example:
Turkey. - this means turkey meat with water weight included
Turkey Meal. - this means dried and ground turkey meat. The same product as above, but with the water removed before it's weight is figured into the ingredient proportions
Turkey By-Product Meal. - this it the more "icky" part of meat. As in, any of the turkey parts that aren't typically considered "meat"
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for explaining, Shell. I think I may give Earthborn Holistics a try. We are currently feeding Fromm four star grain free, but since I'm unemployed, it's pretty expensive. Anyone else have any suggestions to something cheaper, but as good of quality?
 

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As long as the meal is named, it's okay. By named, I mean "chicken meal" as opposed to "poultry meal". "Poultry" is any bird.
That is completely incorrect. Poultry Meal is a mix of turkey & chicken, quite possibly duck as well. Generally Poultry Meal is 60% Turkey & 40% Chicken.
 

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That is completely incorrect. Poultry Meal is a mix of turkey & chicken, quite possibly duck as well. Generally Poultry Meal is 60% Turkey & 40% Chicken.
Well, technically, that's "any bird". How many different kinds of birds are in the food supply? And I don't think they get to call ostrich "poultry". Like I said, I wouldn't object to "poultry meal" but it seems it doesn't exist. Do you know of any foods that use it?
 

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Well, technically, that's "any bird". How many different kinds of birds are in the food supply? And I don't think they get to call ostrich "poultry". Like I said, I wouldn't object to "poultry meal" but it seems it doesn't exist. Do you know of any foods that use it?
Not many that is why I don't understand why people get all worried. Most plants that process chicken also process turkey and duck.

Yes some Castor & Pollux formulas have poultry meal.
 

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If you can trust Diamond, Tractor Supply carries the generic TOTW, called 4 Health. You can get 4 Health in a grain free Salmon and Potato formula. It's less expensive than TOTW.
 

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If you can trust Diamond, Tractor Supply carries the generic TOTW, called 4 Health. You can get 4 Health in a grain free Salmon and Potato formula. It's less expensive than TOTW.
It's not grain-free. . .it has oatmeal. It's a pretty good food but I wouldn't compare it to TOTW.
 

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Not many that is why I don't understand why people get all worried. Most plants that process chicken also process turkey and duck.

Yes some Castor & Pollux formulas have poultry meal.
people get worried because dogs can have allergies! if i have a dog whos allergic to chicken i dont want to see "poultry meal" in my food because i want to know theres no chicken in it.


i switched off of TOTW because of the recall. i originally switched to Back to Basics which i LOOOOOVED. then we had to switch to Earthborn because the SO complained that Back to Basics was "too expensive". i dont like it at all for my Lexi. shes not doing well on it so i will be switching her back to Back to Basics and leaving Chloe on Earthborn.
 

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Not many that is why I don't understand why people get all worried. Most plants that process chicken also process turkey and duck.

Yes some Castor & Pollux formulas have poultry meal.
Harrison (Genesis, Chicopee and Titan) use poultry meals, so does original european Royal Canin formulas. Loyall use poultry by-products.

side note; Genesis is a great corn inclusive product ;)
 
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