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Discussion Starter #1
Marge has been on Merrick for about two months now. She is pooping markedly less; down to 2x a day from the 4 or 5 times she went on Iams. But, her stool is inconsistent. Some days its great; others, quite soft. Never actually has the runs.

I can't figure out what it is that's doing this to her. One bag she was great. Now this new bag, my backyard is full of soft-serve..

I've stopped giving her wet food the past 4ish days to see if it was that. Well, doesn't look that way. Poop's still soft.

The only other thing I can think of is that I've been using Natural Balance Lamb and Brown Rice food rolls as a training treat. I've recently heard Lamb is hard to digest. Could this be it? Even in such small amounts?

I don't know what to do -- everyone says something different. Some people say to wait for 6 months after switching.

Just recently I heard that the lesser brands put stool hardeners into their formulas to make it seem like the dogs are doing better, and thus when you switch to a food like Merrick, it takes longer.

Should I be supplementing with plain yogurt for now? Ughh. So confused!

Thanks in advance if you can sort through this post and give me some advice. :)
 

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If it's soft enough to be a problem, I'd say mix in a bit of pure pumpkin (not the pie filling) to firm things up. I overfed Mojo once (will never do that again) and thought I'd wait it out but after our third time in the tub I opted to try the pumpkin and the benefit was pretty much immediate.

I don't know what your feeding schedule is like, but is it possible that overfeeding is your problem as well?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I don't *think* overfeeding is the problem..

She gets about 1 3/4 cups a day, split up over two meals (7AM, 5PM). She gets exercised every day as well. She is also already on the thin side - I think if she got any less, she'd start losing weight.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The only other brands she's been on are Pedigree (what she was on at the shelter that I continued for a few weeks, yuck) and Iams (also yuck). She's pretty much had stool inconsistency always.

Her last poop at about 5pm tonight was half normal, half very soft.

I was thinking about downgrading her to Purina Pro Plan but I really would rather not go down in quality if I don't have to. Just my preference.. I know some dogs do well on it, but I've dealt with diet problems and severe allergies in my cat, so I kind of want to have something a bit better than that. Maybe I can mix ProPlan and Merrick for a while and see how it is?

I was looking at the Nature's Variety Prairie Formulas - seems like its available in my area and also shouldn't be ridiculously costly - but it says they're designed specifically for rotation feeding. What if I just want to put her on the Chicken and Brown Rice formula and not rotate to their Instinct or Premade Raw diets? Would it be incomplete?

I'll also be honest and admit that I'd rather my dog be on a well known brand. I think I said in my last thread about food that I get kind of freaked out with all of these small-company super premium brands that I've never heard of.
 

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Prairie is a good dry food. I used to buy it occasionally, but the store that sells it is out of the way and I haven't been there for a while. I didn't even know they recommend using the dry food as part of their rotation thing....I'm sure it'll say on the bag whether it's complete and balanced or not. If it's not, it has to say something like "this food is meant for supplemental feeding only" or whatever.
 

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I use Natures Variety Prairie, it was the first food my dog had solid stools on. It's a complete food and you don't need to be on their rotation program. Email them, they will give you a coupon to try it.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Sounds good West, I think I'll do that.

It says on their website that they source some of their Rabbit and Liver from China. That doesn't bother anyone?

I'd use the Chicken formula, anyway, but still wondering about it.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Starting to think its not the Merrick and it's something else in her diet..

She's been good the past two days. Small, better formed poop. Yesterday, my dad didn't give her as many treats as he normally does (he is on the generous side), and I didn't use the Natural Balance Lamb food roll to do training. Continuing to leave wet food out of her diet for now. Hmmmm.
 

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Carsten was having that issue for awhile. I put him on Taste of the Wild and Evo and it still took a little time but now he is fine. I think I was over feeding for awhile and when cut him back and just fed 3 smaller meals he was fine. He maintains his weight wonderfully on the smaller amount. The richer foods do not need as much to maintain the weight. Yogurt helps for gas though and I do add a dollop on their food too. They also like it and look at the refrigerator if I forget. :)
 
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