Join Date: Jul 2005
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Oooo--good points LadyDi--I'm one of the long time owners who has been feeding pretty much the same food for many years despite the fact that it sometimes isn't high in the rating.
But the bottom line is that in some cases I know that the rating is done by folk who mean well but really don't have a lot of knowledge about what is really important when it comes to dog food.
Many years ago a vet gave me some really good advice about choosing kibble. "Buy it from a big company, one who maintains a colony of dogs who eat the things they make and do well on it or it never sees the marketplace." And many years later another vet said that scoring well on invented testing wasn't always the way to go--he said pretty much the same thing the first vet had told me. Stick with the bigger companies who use nutritionists to first develop food formulas and then to evaluate if the food does what it was intended to do for the dog. And always see if the dog actually likes the food and looks good when he's been eating it for awhile.
So I stick with the big manufacturers who sometimes get a bad rap about food which often turns out to be for pretty nonsensical reasons. I've fed Iams and Eukanuba (which is actually Iams upper echelon label), Hills, Royal Canin and Purina.
My fall back food for many years now has been Purine, ProPlan Focus Sensitive Skin and Stomach (Salmon and Rice)--almost all the dogs I've owned or raised have done well on this (dispite the corn, and other stuff that various peple have objected to) their eyes are bright, their coat is shiny, they carry appropriate weight without having to feed ridiculous amounts of food and their poop is compact and solid (Lady Di--if you thing we talk about some strange stuff--you should sit in at a table of dog show folk at lunch some time).
This is a fairly medium formula--but my experience especially with Dobermans has been that they actually do better on a moderate formula than many of the high powered formulas. Particularly if you are feeding puppies of young dogs. My older dogs seem to be able to eat anything without problems but not so true of the younger guys.
GreenKouki brought up a really good point in view of the recent findings about DCM and grain free food. Dobermans DCM is a known genetic form and while the cardiac testing goes on and there are some Dobes with DCM who were on grain free kibble the testing hasn't shown a link that would also indicate that there is a taurine deficiency.
Most of the studies mention that the grain free problems may be more related to micro ingredients that aren't present in the grain free kibbles and that's what may cause problems. But all of this testing is really in its infancy at this point.