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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey there,

Im fairly new here and just wanted to see if anyone would give me some kind words of advice/opinions on the food I give my 5 (nearly 6) month old puppy?

He has a lovely shiny coat, is a good weight and is growing steadily, so I have no cause for alarm, but I have been reading lots of information and I would just like to see if there’s anything I could do better.

I currently feed ProPlan Large breed puppy Athletic (ProPlan Large Breed Athletic Puppy Food with Lamb and Rice 3kg | Pets at Home) which I researched and spoke to my puppy socialization teacher about, and it seems to have good ingredients and get good reviews. Sometimes I mix this food with a small amount of Arden Grange Salmon & potato (Natural Premium Dog Food from Arden Grange) in with it, as its a lot cheaper, but its barely noticeable as I keep all the food in a large sealed bin, so it’s a very small proportion.

In addition to this, I add a couple of spoonfuls of canned tuna aprox once/twice a week, add finely chopped frozen vegetables and sometimes a raw egg or a tablespoon full of extra virgin olive oil.

For treats I give chopped frankfurter sausage, and he gets frozen carrots for his teething.

Would love your opinion/advice, as I know the vets/pet shops are very biased as to what they want people to buy!
 

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Hi,

I feed my puppy Orijen. Our mainstay treats are Merrick Lamb Quarters, bully sticks, and Virbac chews. Plus they get either Greek Yogurt or Probiotics and Nupro Vitamins. Then since they are spoiled rotten with no manners whatsoever, they get whatever junk I'm eating!

If your puppy is doing well on the ProPlan, I wouldn't worry about it. I hear ProPlan is a very good food. I think several vets on this site feed it to their own dogs. If you do a search, there are several posts about feeding preferences.

Nice to meet you!

KC/Linda
 

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Hey there,



I currently feed ProPlan Large breed puppy Athletic (ProPlan Large Breed Athletic Puppy Food with Lamb and Rice 3kg | Pets at Home) which I researched and spoke to my puppy socialization teacher about, and it seems to have good ingredients and get good reviews. Sometimes I mix this food with a small amount of Arden Grange Salmon & potato (Natural Premium Dog Food from Arden Grange) in with it, as its a lot cheaper, but its barely noticeable as I keep all the food in a large sealed bin, so it’s a very small proportion.

In addition to this, I add a couple of spoonfuls of canned tuna aprox once/twice a week, add finely chopped frozen vegetables and sometimes a raw egg or a tablespoon full of extra virgin olive oil.

For treats I give chopped frankfurter sausage, and he gets frozen carrots for his teething.

Would love your opinion/advice, as I know the vets/pet shops are very biased as to what they want people to buy!
Read the contents, ProPlan is a high grain, low meat (turkey, chicken, beef, etc.) meal food. There are many better foods on the market.
 

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I'm not a fan of corn in dog foods, and that food seems to have quite a bit. I personally think you could find something better.
 

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I'll give you an OK. For whatever reason, Dobermans seem to do well on Pro Plan. Many big time Doberman breeders have fed it for decades with good results. If your puppy is doing well on it, there really is no reason to change.
 
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If your dog is doing well on ProPlan I would say stick with it. It's a decent food. Yes, there are ratings systems out there, but while some of the information is worthwhile, some of it really is a matter of opinion/preference. For example, the whole concept of grain in dog foods being a bad thing, that's really dog dependent and also dependent on how the owner feels about it. Some dogs have problems with grain, some don't. Again, if your dog is doing well with what you are feeding and you are happy with the results I don't see a need to change it.
 

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There is no reason to change foods if a dog is doing well on it in my opinion. We used to feed pro plan and all our dogs did wonderful on it, even if it's not the best food out there.
 

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I personally dont like kibble with grain in it. I feed Chase Nature's Variety - Instinct. As for treats he gets a few carrots, grain free biscuits, or dried beef liver. I dont trust packaged meats like lunch meat, hot dogs, sausages ect because of the amount of preservatives, and salt.

I hear a lot of positives about the Purina Pro Plan, but I just dont like Purina in general. It is your choice on what your dog should eat.
 

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You can definitely do a lot better if it's in your budget. Grocery brand foods(purina, pedigree, eukanuba, iams, beneful..) are not as nutritionally correct for a canine diet as your higher-end kibble and contain more questionable ingredients. Just because a lot of people feed a certain brand of dog food does not mean you still shouldn't do your own independent research. A LOT of people feed grocery brand foods because they just don't know better, their uneducated vet tells them those are good quality diets, or the old saying "if it ain't broke, don't fix it." IMO, question everything, you might learn something along the way :) I liken grocery brand foods to someone eating McDonalds every day. Yeah you can live off of it but would you really want to put that in your body? Oatmeal or Captain Crunch? What taste better but what is actually better for you? If you can afford to do better for your pet's nutritional needs then why not? There are many different top quality brands to choose from :)
 

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I'll give you an OK too. If your puppy does well on ProPlan (which can't be purchased in grocery stores by the way) he does well on ProPlan. ProPlan has been my fall back food for several years.

My dogs have never had problems with grains in the their kibble--they have no problem with corn in any form--corn has become the "poison" in dog food in recent years and actually some of the dogs do more poorly on the grain free foods than they do on foods with grain as the carb source. Not all dogs respond well to the various non-grain carb sources--potato (white) is the most common one.

Some of the foods that dogs do well on have very poor ratings--but if it has 5 stars and your dog has a dull coat, bad breath, soft stools and no energy it's not the right food for that dog.

Purina at least still runs feeding tests (as does Hills, another manufacturer of much maligned kibbles) most of the highly rated "all natural" or "human quality ingredient" kibbles rely on computer models which often look great on the bag but don't work so well in the dog.
 

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You can definitely do a lot better if it's in your budget. Grocery brand foods(purina, pedigree, eukanuba, iams, beneful..) are not as nutritionally correct for a canine diet as your higher-end kibble and contain more questionable ingredients. Just because a lot of people feed a certain brand of dog food does not mean you still shouldn't do your own independent research. A LOT of people feed grocery brand foods because they just don't know better, their uneducated vet tells them those are good quality diets, or the old saying "if it ain't broke, don't fix it." IMO, question everything, you might learn something along the way :) I liken grocery brand foods to someone eating McDonalds every day. Yeah you can live off of it but would you really want to put that in your body? Oatmeal or Captain Crunch? What taste better but what is actually better for you? If you can afford to do better for your pet's nutritional needs then why not? There are many different top quality brands to choose from :)
While I agree with your idea to question things and respect that you have come to your own conclusions about what you would choose for your pet, some of your assessment is a bit off and I would like to clarify a few things. The first being that while there are indeed grocery store versions from the major pet food companies, there are also different higher end versions that are formulated differently, often with higher quality ingredients. ProPlan fits into this category. You also mentioned Eukanuba, which is actually also an Iams brand. Iams sells some of it's diets in grocery stores, but Eukanuba is also a specialty store only diet, unless that has very recently changed. Sticking with Purina brands though, there is a difference between Purina Dog Chow, Purina One and Purina Proplan. It would kind of be like Dog Chow is ground beef and Purina One is a mid grade cut of steak. Then there are the uber fancy brands of dog food that might be more like the equivalent of a filet mignon. It's a bit of a simple analogy, but IMO it's not the equivalent of eating sugar cereal vs. oatmeal. There are plenty of mid grade foods that are going to do more than just get your dog by but that they can indeed thrive on. That's not to say that there aren't indeed pretty junky brands of dog food that would really a lot like going to McDonald's all the time. But there is also something to be said for the fact that on the very high end of the spectrum there is also a lot done that is more to appeal to the real consumer (the owner) than there is added value to overall well being of the animal. It really is about finding what you are comfortable with feeding as well as giving something that your dog does well on. :)
 

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if it works, stick with it. i personally prefer PMR over kibble anyway so i'm not much of a judge of kibble..
 

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While I agree with your idea to question things and respect that you have come to your own conclusions about what you would choose for your pet, some of your assessment is a bit off and I would like to clarify a few things. The first being that while there are indeed grocery store versions from the major pet food companies, there are also different higher end versions that are formulated differently, often with higher quality ingredients. ProPlan fits into this category. You also mentioned Eukanuba, which is actually also an Iams brand. Iams sells some of it's diets in grocery stores, but Eukanuba is also a specialty store only diet, unless that has very recently changed. Sticking with Purina brands though, there is a difference between Purina Dog Chow, Purina One and Purina Proplan. It would kind of be like Dog Chow is ground beef and Purina One is a mid grade cut of steak. Then there are the uber fancy brands of dog food that might be more like the equivalent of a filet mignon. It's a bit of a simple analogy, but IMO it's not the equivalent of eating sugar cereal vs. oatmeal. There are plenty of mid grade foods that are going to do more than just get your dog by but that they can indeed thrive on. That's not to say that there aren't indeed pretty junky brands of dog food that would really a lot like going to McDonald's all the time. But there is also something to be said for the fact that on the very high end of the spectrum there is also a lot done that is more to appeal to the real consumer (the owner) than there is added value to overall well being of the animal. It really is about finding what you are comfortable with feeding as well as giving something that your dog does well on. :)

Thanks for the insight :) The only thing I have a question about is what I bolded in your post. What do you mean by that? What are the high quality companies doing to "trick" consumers? I was always taught that dog food companies on the lower end of the spectrum spent all of their money on pretty advertisements and none on good ingredients, whereas with premium quality companies it is more of the opposite, which is why you really don't see them advertised on tv or in print. Pedigree, Iams, beneful, Purina are all over the tv so joe public thinks its something good to feed his dog. Most people aren't aware of the better brands because they just don't know about them.

All in all, I am happy that people are simply feeding their pets, I am not one to go around shoving my views on dog food down other's throats but when they ask I'll put in my 2 cents :)
 

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They aren't really doing anything to trick people per se. It's more that in some cases they use ingredients that are more geared towards evoking the emotional response "That's good for me/I would eat that so I'd like to give it to my dog too!" when less expensive but just as worthy ingredients/sources can be used but they don't sound as appetizing to us. I know it sounds all secretive, but I've worked for a pet food company and also helped with trials for other pet food companies and seen results where they've done feeding trials with similar results for many different ingredients but may choose the ones that "sound" better for the higher end food. Also, along the same lines, pet food companies will try to follow the human nutrition trends/discoveries. For example, when I was in grad school and the whole glycemic index concept was coming about, there were several companies interested in examining the glycemic index of certain pet food ingredients/formulations.

There are indeed similarities between human and canine nutrient requirements and sometimes there truly are benefits to exploring these concepts in canine nutrition. However, that's not always the case and again if companies can try putting in these "trendy" ingredients even when something else works, but it will get some people interested they do explore that. Even companies that don't outwardly market through flashier advertising are still marketing towards a certain group of people.

ETA: Also, as dobebug mentioned it is true that feeding trials are not being done as much by some of these companies. This is actually quite unfortunate, especially because the companies that add some of these "newer" ingredients that haven't been used before don't truly know the bioavailability of the nutrients when you put them in a dog. On the up side, since there is a lot of background knowledge about the dog they can make a more educated guess than with some other animals. I've seen firsthand with helping formulate some zoo animal diets that what looks good on paper from the computer model may not really work out when you apply it to real life.
 

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All in all, I am happy that people are simply feeding their pets, I am not one to go around shoving my views on dog food down other's throats but when they ask I'll put in my 2 cents :)
Just saw this part. I feel the same way too. I get asked about dog and cat food pretty frequently and I learned a while back how to try and go about answering properly. I have seen a lot of threads on here about nutrition/foods that I just ignore because it's a lot of back and forth about stuff that isn't that critical when it comes down to it. The only time I really like to pipe in much is when someone is outright asking or sometimes when I see something that could use some clarification for the benefit of others. That was really why I replied to your post 'cause you lumped a lot of stuff together in one group when there are indeed differences :)
 

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In the end, if you face cancer with your pet, you will begin to understand how important diet is.

I hope none of you have to face that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Hey everyone, thank you very much for all your opinions!

In tests I've done (the old 'how good if your petfood, start at 100, -10 +5 ect) pro plan comes up very well, however when I've read through the ingredients before picking it, I wasn't overly enthused to see 'ash' and wheat on there.

To be honest I add so much extra ingredients to the dry food anyway, I would expect it to be all the vegetables and fish which is making his coat so nice.

Pro plan is by no means a cheap food here btw! It's £15 a week (about $23) plus all the vegetables, olive oil and tuna I'm buying! So if there was a cheaper, better food on the Market, that would be definatley with trying!

I'm going to need to change soon anyway as this is only recommended until 6 months, so thanks again everyone :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Hey everyone, thank you very much for all your opinions!

In tests I've done (the old 'how good if your petfood, start at 100, -10 +5 ect) pro plan comes up very well, however when I've read through the ingredients before picking it, I wasn't overly enthused to see 'ash' and wheat on there.

To be honest I add so much extra ingredients to the dry food anyway, I would expect it to be all the vegetables and fish which is making his coat so nice.

Pro plan is by no means a cheap food here btw! It's £15 a week (about $23) plus all the vegetables, olive oil and tuna I'm buying! So if there was a cheaper, better food on the Market, that would be definatley with trying!

I'm going to need to change soon anyway as this is only recommended until 6 months, so thanks again everyone :)
Edit// oh just wanted too add (I hope this doesn't sound stupid! :)) but I thought that it wasn't good for Doberman pups to get too much protein as some studies show this can cause rapid growth which can cause long term problems? Or is this just something pet food companies say to 'explain away' low meat contents?
 
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