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Discussion Starter #1
hello everyone!

I have been reading on this most wonderfully informative forum for a few weeks. We got our precious Lucy (toy schnoodle) just 2 weeks ago, she is now 10 weeks. We are first time dog owners and I have NO IDEA what I am doing, LOL!

I am on a huge learning curve here on all things dog, so please bear with me if I ask a lot of questions. I am trying to find as much info in the forums archives as I can.

Right now I am concerned about choosing the proper food. The breeder had her on Life's Abundance, but I had decided that I wanted a grain free food from the very beginning to prevent allergies and hopefully prevent (or help) tear staining as she is an apricot. The boutique food store nearby offered me many choices and I chose NB grain free small breed (just a guess really). She has been on it since she got home with no problems except for one day of vomiting this week, which I think was from giving her few too many treats the day before. That has passed and she seems fine again. She eats well, although less than what the package says she should. She is about 3.5 pounds now, to be 10-12 pounds. She is eating about 1/8 cup 3 times a day.

But as I am looking at other foods and comparing things here are my concerns:

1) The NB food is for puppy to adulthood, and I don't think it has as much protein as some pure puppy foods.

2) Am I doing her a disservice by starting her off on grain free when she has no evidence of allergies yet? (although I do think she is scratching and chewing her paws less than when I first got her. I also think the tear staining might be a tad better as well, but hard to tell.)

3) Is she eating enough and getting enough protein?

4) I am aware of the recent recall but also ties to this food and severe pancreatitis and even dog deaths ( really scares me).

She is very energetic, happy. I am no dog expert but she looks good to me. I have no experience to judge her coat, eyes and teeth.

Any information or advice you guys could give would be most appreciative. We are head over heels for Lucy and I want only the best for her.


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I am currently feeding my small dogs Wellness Super5Mix for small breeds. I believe they make a puppy formula. My two Blu Boy and Eddee are 6 years and 1 year old. Leeo had pancreatic neucrosis and sorrowfully he could not be saved. Since Leeo passed I have been very diligent in trying to find a good food for the Schnauzer mix in them ... as Schnauzers are ... according to a very good vet and surgeon ... prone to pancreatic issues. I now try and stay with lower fat in their diets. I try and stay below 15% fat if possible.

I am thinking that I may switch to Wellness Core grain-free in a month or so. Not every dog does well on the same food. Also ... you can only do what you can do ... I just try and buy the best I can afford. But try and stay away from foods with wheat, corn, and soy in them if possible on your budget. Grain-free is the best IMHO. It is important that the first two-four ingredients include a real meat and meat meal ... not meat by products. Also stay away from ethoxyquin ... http://www.holisticvetpetcare.net/ethoxyquin.htm

Here is a place to look up different dog foods and their ingredients and ratings ... as well as you can sign up for free to receive dog food recall information in your e-mail.

www.dogfoodadvisor.com

Here is another site you may like. Everything is printable. I use it regularly for health information ... I keep a list of toxic food and plants on my fridge as well as the poison control center telephone number, vets number, and ER Vet Hospital number.

www.peteducation.com
 

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1) IIRC all Natural Balance foods are fairly low in protein. It's still fairly good food, just lower protein content.

2) Not sure what you're asking. The idea behind grain free is just that Dogs digestive tracks aren't really meant to process grain, so grain free in general is just better.

3) It's not particularly abnormal to eat less than the recommended amount. As for protein, it's probably fine for her. Higher protein foods are said to cause growth spurts which are bad and can lead to skeletal development issues (although I would think it'd be more calcium that cause bone growth than protein). In large breeds that's a big concern, not so much in smaller dogs. In any case I don't think it hurts for her to be on a slightly lower protein diet as a puppy. When she's older you might want to switch to something with higher protein.

4) I know there are some people that want to stay away from brands that's had recalls and what not. In the end that's your choice.
 

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I don't really like NB. The only kibbles I'd feed at this point would be Orijen and Go! I feed raw right now. One thing you might want to look into are dehydrated foods if you don't want to do raw. Grandma Lucy's is the one I prefer. Ziwipeak and Real Meat Pet are even better! She's small do it probably wouldn't cost that much.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I am currently feeding my small dogs Wellness Super5Mix for small breeds. I believe they make a puppy formula. My two Blu Boy and Eddee are 6 years and 1 year old. Leeo had pancreatic neucrosis and sorrowfully he could not be saved. Since Leeo passed I have been very diligent in trying to find a good food for the Schnauzer mix in them ... as Schnauzers are ... according to a very good vet and surgeon ... prone to pancreatic issues. I now try and stay with lower fat in their diets. I try and stay below 15% fat if possible.

I am thinking that I may switch to Wellness Core grain-free in a month or so. Not every dog does well on the same food. Also ... you can only do what you can do ... I just try and buy the best I can afford. But try and stay away from foods with wheat, corn, and soy in them if possible on your budget. Grain-free is the best IMHO. It is important that the first two-four ingredients include a real meat and meat meal ... not meat by products. Also stay away from ethoxyquin ... http://www.holisticvetpetcare.net/ethoxyquin.htm

Here is a place to look up different dog foods and their ingredients and ratings ... as well as you can sign up for free to receive dog food recall information in your e-mail.

www.dogfoodadvisor.com

Here is another site you may like. Everything is printable. I use it regularly for health information ... I keep a list of toxic food and plants on my fridge as well as the poison control center telephone number, vets number, and ER Vet Hospital number.

www.peteducation.com
Thank you so much for your replay and this info.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I don't really like NB. The only kibbles I'd feed at this point would be Orijen and Go! I feed raw right now. One thing you might want to look into are dehydrated foods if you don't want to do raw. Grandma Lucy's is the one I prefer. Ziwipeak and Real Meat Pet are even better! She's small do it probably wouldn't cost that much.
Thank you for replying. May I ask what you do not like about NB?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
1) IIRC all Natural Balance foods are fairly low in protein. It's still fairly good food, just lower protein content.

2) Not sure what you're asking. The idea behind grain free is just that Dogs digestive tracks aren't really meant to process grain, so grain free in general is just better.

3) It's not particularly abnormal to eat less than the recommended amount. As for protein, it's probably fine for her. Higher protein foods are said to cause growth spurts which are bad and can lead to skeletal development issues (although I would think it'd be more calcium that cause bone growth than protein). In large breeds that's a big concern, not so much in smaller dogs. In any case I don't think it hurts for her to be on a slightly lower protein diet as a puppy. When she's older you might want to switch to something with higher protein.

4) I know there are some people that want to stay away from brands that's had recalls and what not. In the end that's your choice.
1) I have recently noticed this and wondering if she needs more protein only being 10 weeks old.

2) I was asking because of my lack of knowledge, LOL, I did not know if it was advisable to start out on grain free, or better to start her out on a more "regular" food and see what happens.

3) Thank you, this is helpful. It raised my eyebrows when i saw most other puppy formulas to have higher protein than this NB "all age" food.

4) yes, this highly concerns me. I just learned of the recall and the pancreatic issues 2 days ago, a week or so after having her on NB. She seems to be doing well on it for now, so I am not sure if I should wait a while, change her to a more "reliable" brand now, ask the vet, or what.

Thank you so much for taking the time to reply.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
They recently had a recall. I don't like the citric acid, beet pulp, potato starch, or pea protein. There just doesn't seem to be a lot of meat in there.
yes, concerns of mine too as I get more educated. Can you recommend a good puppy grain free formula? (cost is really not an issue as I my kids are grown and I have the budget.) Thank you!

eta: i see your recs above; i will check them out, thank you!!
 

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yes, concerns of mine too as I get more educated. Can you recommend a good puppy grain free formula? (cost is really not an issue as I my kids are grown and I have the budget.) Thank you!

eta: i see your recs above; i will check them out, thank you!!
You're Welcome! I also like Evo, forgot to mention it. I am pretty picky though. Out of all of those I would go with some kind of dehydrated. It's the next best thing to raw.
 

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I don't feed kibble anymore, and like some have mentioned, some foods work great for dogs while others do not; however since you are looking for recommendations based on experience or knowledge of good brands, I personally recommend Acana All Life Stages grain-free formulas (Wild Prairie, Grasslands, Ranchlands and Pacifica), Fromm's grain free, Timberwolf Organics grain free formula ( I think its called wild & free?) NOW! grain free, and I've also had good results in the past with Nature's Variety Instincts grain free formula's although I think I heard they recently had a recall as well.. though i'm not sure how alarming it is or was. All of these brands, after trying dozens, were by far my favs and had the best results with both my dogs when I was still feeding some kibble.

Good luck finding one that works for your pup! Cute BTW :)
 

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I posted on the other thread that I don't like Natural Balance but if it's working for him, that's all that matters. I'm not a fan of NB because they have SO many different formulas; too many IMO. They've also had a recall, so...
 

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So there is no such thing as too much protein? I thought I had read somewhere that it could cause problems. Please forgive my unending ignorance. I really want to do what's best for her. I appreciate your patience with me, all of you. Thank you.
 

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I posted on the other thread that I don't like Natural Balance but if it's working for him, that's all that matters. I'm not a fan of NB because they have SO many different formulas; too many IMO. They've also had a recall, so...
Yes, this has me considering a change........
 

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Not loving that they say dogs are omnivores...but pretty good.
Yeah ... they contradict themselves a bit ... I think they are trying to stress that when canines eat prey ... for instance they catch and ingest a rabbit ... they are taking in plant matter. There are three pages to read ... it has been a while since I read all the way through this ... but that is what I remember. I came across this article when I was looking for a diet for Leeo. I was not sure about the protein and fat due to pancreatic issues.
 

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So there is no such thing as too much protein? I thought I had read somewhere that it could cause problems. Please forgive my unending ignorance. I really want to do what's best for her. I appreciate your patience with me, all of you. Thank you.
The talk of concern with high protein in puppies is that it could cause growth spurt which can lead to skeletal development issues like hip dysplasia. It's also claimed that feeding raw avoids growth spurts and makes puppies develop at a more steady pace. From a nutritional perspective, the two may seem contradictory but the idea of raw feeding is to "feed what nature intended" and is generally believed to be the best diet. Years of testimonials from experienced dog owners and breeders pretty much support the general idea. Although sometime reading about it almost makes it seem like the wonder food since it's better for pretty much everything. At the very least, it should be obvious that home made food uses much better ingredients than processed chicken meals.

The whole not giving puppies too much protein is all more of a preventative "just in case" kind of thing. If it's kibble I would probably avoid the 40% ones like orijen, evo, and instinct until she's an adult. I would probably keep it to at most the 33% range like Arcana. Going with a raw diet seems to be fine for puppies by all accounts so you could look into that as well. Switching to raw takes some research but there should be enough knowledgeable people and threads to help guide you.
 
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