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Discussion Starter #1
Been doing mountains of food research for my future puppy and I think I've settled on wanting to do a combination of kibble and canned (with some homecooked days tossed in there).

My understanding is this is generally called "topping" but does that mean the ratio is more kibble with a small bit of canned? Coming from a cat-feeding background my gut instinct was that more canned would be better, nutritionally and moisture-content-wise. So I wanted to make my dog's diet primarily canned and that kibble would be the "topper" just to add some varied texture and crunch. Is this a fine way to do it?

Is the kibble even necessary at all? What are the benefits to including it? Just aesthetics/cost? When I asked my vet about this I got the teeth cleaning line which I am not remotely convinced by, but every time I try to read up on the pros and cons of kibble vs. canned, I see a lot stating the benefits of canned but always concluding that topping is the best option, not feeding straight canned, without any explanation of why. It's left me very confused!
 

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You can feed all canned food if you prefer. High quality canned will usually cost more than high quality kibble though. There is no real benefit IMO to kibble over canned. Kibble does not clean a dogs teeth, you can get them things to chew on, provide raw meaty bones and/or brush their teeth.

If your "topper" is canned food you can make the ratio whatever you want. If it is "people" food like yogurt, cooked meat or veggies it is recommended to keep it at 25% or less of the meal so as not to cause digestive upset or unbalance the already balanced kibble. A little more than that once in a while isn't really going to hurt though.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
So it'd be fine to just feed canned and sprinkle with a little kibble or skip the kibble entirely then? I'll have to see what my dog food budget is when the time comes but I've already been planning on setting aside a decent chunk of money each month for a good canned. I have my cats on frozen raw and grain-free canned and have always felt it's well-worth the cost.

Definitely planning on starting tooth-brushing at an early age since teeth and gum problems are a major issue with poms. I'm also trying to figure out what are reliable safe chews as I see so much mixed info on this. I do raw chicken wings with my cats sometimes, and plain roasted chicken jerky regularly, and assume I could do the same with a pom?
 

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Since you'll have a small dog, feed him/her the same way you feed your cats. Grain-free canned, frozen raw, raw chicken wings, and jerky treats will be a terrific diet for a dog as well. The main reason not very many people feed their dog all canned is that it would cost a small fortune to feed all canned food to a large dog :p. Say $2 a can, 5 cans a day. . .yikes!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Excellent! I was considering feeding him raw as well since my cats do so well on it but hadn't made up my mind yet. I will probably toss some Primal into the rotation.
And yeah that's the main reason I'm not too concerned about the price. I expect it to not be too much different price-wise than feeding another cat. I have nothing but sympathy for those with big dogs trying to do grain-free and premade raw! 5 cans a day? Yikes indeed!
 

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I could not afford canned or premade raw. I have three dogs and the lab is 122 lbs and the mastiff is around 190-200 lbs (he is on a diet, lol)

I am doing prey model raw using animal parts and the price fluctuates depending on where I get my source of meats (I miss hunting season already)

Many people feed kibble because it costs less. You are not paying for water like you are with canned. Canned is good too though, provided you chose a good one. what kind of dog are you going to get? If you do feed canned, you HAVE GOT to do something for it's teeth. Canned will make a dog's teeth horrible faster because of the moisture content and lack of any chewing (not that kibble does anything for teeth either). Raw meaty bones to chew on or toothbrushing. But, if you do toothbrushing, you have to commit to do it REGULARLY for the life of the dog. I am too lazy for that. LOL
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
I'm getting a pomeranian. And yeah, toothbrushing is pretty much non-optional for that breed. They're notorious for having bad teeth whether they're eating canned or not so I want to do everything I can to minimize tarter buildup.

I have a list of canned brands I like already put together: Blue Buffalo, Merrick, Nature's Variety Instinct, and Wellness. I've been happy with those brands (I feed my cats Wellness, NV, and Merrick along with their Primal) and they seem to have a good range of options, both grain-free and grain-inclusive so hopefully one or a few will be a winner.

And yeah the premade raw is pretty pricey which is one of the reasons I'm still unsure about doing it with the pom. My cats only get one meal of it a day (and the rest is canned) partially because of the price and partially for variety (they refuse to eat anything but raw Primal chicken but will eat other brands/meats in canned).
 

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Well, you can always just offer a raw meaty bone instead of premade.

I really like merrick's canned line. I also like Wellness's 95% canned stuff. The other two aren't bad either, but they were the treats at my house (before I went raw) because of price.

I bet you can't wait to get your pom. That will be fun.
 

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I used to feed mainly dry food, I just added a little wet food to make it smell nicer and make it more interesting for them. I would go with mostly dry, it's cheaper than wet and you'll need a smaller amount for them to feel full than if you feed mostly wet.

I now feed raw, which I think is the best option, and it costs about the same as feeding high quality dry, which is about $1-2 a day for my two little ones.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I bet you can't wait to get your pom. That will be fun.
Definitely! The wait is painful. I decided on getting a new pom last December, spent the past several months going to local shows and talking to breeders, and now that we've found a breeder it seems to close...but yet so far! It'll probably still be another 8-9 months depending on when we move and when the breeder has available puppies. I'm just going to have to find more local shows to go to to get my pom fix until then!

And yeah, I went through all the homemade raw research with my cats...it's just not something I want to do right now unless I really have to. I already cook food for myself and my fiance from scratch most days so I want to limit the pet food prep as long as I can find quality stuff to give them. I'm thinking maybe doing homemade on weekends, but sticking to some combination of good commercial stuff during the week.
 

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Someone on my cat forum did a spreadsheet showing how much it costs to feed your cat each kind/brand of food (based on the recommended feeeding amounts on the package. . .yes, we all know those are inflated but what else do we have to go on?) and it actually costs less to feed your cat most brands of premade raw than to feed most of the high-end canned foods. I thought that was interesting.

And, yes, with canned food you are paying for a lot of water. But as we know, with cats that's pretty much the whole point. I don't think moisture in food is as important for dogs but canned foods have way more meat and way less carbs than any dry food. If it's in the budget, it's a good option.
 

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I was thinking of using a raw egg as a once-a-week topper, as found in the sticky : http://www.dogforums.com/dog-food-forum/46017-feeding-raw-eggs.html

For anyone that may do this, do you crack the egg/mix up the shell or just serve it whole and let them dig in? What's the best way to introduce a raw egg into a diet mainly composed of kibble? Current treats are ziwipeak raw venison jerky, which has been fine for his stomach.
 

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The only thing wrong with canned is it's high price and inconvenience. It's been a century since I've fed canned though. His toppings usually include a salmon oil supplement(daily), salt-free sardines or a raw egg.

I was thinking of using a raw egg as a once-a-week topper, as found in the sticky : http://www.dogforums.com/dog-food-forum/46017-feeding-raw-eggs.html

For anyone that may do this, do you crack the egg/mix up the shell or just serve it whole and let them dig in? What's the best way to introduce a raw egg into a diet mainly composed of kibble? Current treats are ziwipeak raw venison jerky, which has been fine for his stomach.
I give raw egg yolks whenever I make scrambled egg whites(which usually falls around a couple times a week). and I mix it in with his kibble along with his daily salmon oil. Just give him and egg and see how he reacts. Theres really no transition needed.
 
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