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Old 10-20-2008, 05:09 AM
Location: El Paso, TX
2,806 posts, read 6,528,726 times
Reputation: 3275


Originally Posted by riveree View Post
I agree with Sam, the place to start is with your vet. Your dog is on C/D for a reason and you want to be sure you understand your options for your dog.

I know Science Diet isn't the greatest, but we had one of our dogs on W/D at our vet's request because that dog had some issues and it helped him. When he passed away, I decided it was time to switch dog foods (I had been feeding everyone the same food to keep things *even* between them...no food jealousy).

I didn't choose the foods my vet suggested, but he pointed me in the right direction anyway. In my case, my vet said my remaining 2 dogs could be on any regular maintenance food since they are completely healthy. I ended up going with Sold Gold's WolfKing (though I'm in search again for something better). I pay $46+tax for a 33lb bag.
My dogs have been doing GREAT on Pinnacle's peak protein formula. It's very pricey, ($60 for a 3lb. bag...) but they require much less of it and there have been no upset tummies whatsoever, (even after switching without the usual gradual introduction...was afraid their previous brand may have been tainted!) There are trial size bags for $3.00 (1.5 lbs) and there's a $3.00 coupon on the back of the bag, which is why I tried it in the first place...my babies loved it so much and the ingredients are so awesome I had to go for it despite the high price.

To the OP, I agree with what many have said here, that the Hills formulas have crappy ingredients and they don't really help they way vets claim they do. I would see a holistic vet (or call one if there isn't one near you...usually they're in this line of work because they have a genuine interest in HEALING our animals and will talk to you even if they're not going to make any money on it, at least this has been my experience so far...!) I know Standard Process (company that has been doing holistic supplements since 1929) has a veternary formula for kidney issues which is all natural, maybe a good quality food and this supplement would help...? Here's a link if you want to check it out...
Veterinary Formulas (http://www.standardprocess.com/display/VeterinaryCatalog.spi?ID=343 - broken link)

Good luck with everything!!!
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Old 10-20-2008, 10:36 AM
1,501 posts, read 5,191,720 times
Reputation: 1128
Originally Posted by Honeycrisp View Post
Exactly. I wouldnt jump from c/d to another food w/o the vet's OK - while the ingredients are not great, it's helping do what it's supposed to do (prevent crystals/stones) which another food may not do. There are also c/d compatible treats by Sc. Diet which are fairly reasonable, I believe (1 bag for about $3 and change) - lasts longer when broken in half.
This is where they get you, though. The "food" will merely eliminate Ash (or whatever other thing they may cite), however the ingredients will always have the animal suffering from one thing or another, and the dog will be on some sort of (unnecessary) drug to mask the allergies/side-effect issues the dog will inevitably suffer (if he's not already).

Please also know that it is such ingredients which actually CAUSE the crystals and other issues in the first place.

Every dog we've had, or known, has always had to be on drugs for something or another while on such foods. It all makes sense now (hindsight 20/20, of course. Again, we learned it all the hard way.)

This is why Livers and Kidneys end up failing. You will be led to "believe" that the dog is being taken care of -- then the next thing pops up. Dogs will end up suffering some sort of issue because the ingredients are just downright harmful either way and the drugs DO take a toll on the organs.

Just avoiding things with Oxolates (just as with humans many fruits and veggies are high in Oxolates), will do it. Talk to any human with Bladder issues and Kidney stones who has to avoid, say, Yams. They will be told that Cabbage (for instance) is fine, though.

There truly are good **species appropriate** diets with the GOOD proteins, which will keep your dog in optimal health ALL around. And he won't have to be drugged, either.

A Holistic vet will guide you to foods low in Oxolates. And just google it; Kidney, Bladder crystals stones Oxolates. ALL of this info is right at our fingertips, thank goodness, and in Libraries. Nobody will tell us this because they're too busy making $$$ from the drugs, etc. and they dont do any research and disregard commom sense $$. They also must have flunked Biology class big-time (amazing for a vet to not respect this.)

Last edited by Travel'r; 10-20-2008 at 11:20 AM..
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Old 10-22-2008, 02:05 PM
4,133 posts, read 13,323,556 times
Reputation: 3788
Originally Posted by jasape View Post

You're best choice for feeding is raw, or at least a mixture of raw and cooked or canned food. Or at the very least get all natural/holistic dry food. (Make sure it has no soy, corn, or wheat ingredients.) It will save you money on vet bills in the future. I am not a fan of dry kibble though because I have seen my dogs have so much digestive difficulty with it.
Hint: never buy brands sold in supermarkets or by veternarians, as they are usually made with cheap fillers and are way overpriced. With holistic brands you will pay a little more than commercial but the quality is 10X better..but for you it should be cheaper!
Actually I believe low protein is the way to go for crystals - I would think raw would have the opposite effect. Also, per our vet we give them distilled water to drink and add it to the kibble (they're not big drinkers).
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Old 10-22-2008, 02:47 PM
Location: Alaska
5,356 posts, read 16,358,227 times
Reputation: 4024
When our GSD came down with Degenerative Myelopathy, we started feeding him and the others a recommended homemade food recipe. After he passed, we continued to feed the others homemade food because we noticed improvements in their coats and other benefits. We couldn't bring ourselves to go raw so the protein is cooked. Here are a couple of books with recipes:

Amazon.com: Veterinarians Guide to Natural Remedies for Dogs : Safe and Effective Alternative Treatments and Healing Techniques from the Nations Top Holistic Veterinarians: Martin Zucker: Books

Amazon.com: Dr. Pitcairn's Complete Guide to Natural Health for Dogs & Cats: Richard H. Pitcairn, Susan Hubble Pitcairn: Books

Our recipe is a mixture of ground turkey and chicken, pinto beans, brown rice, carrots (raw), green beans (raw), and other mixed vegetables (raw). The veggies are grated up into small pieces and everything is mixed together. We make a big batch and freeze most of it. I also supplement with Missing Link and a digestive aid (Syner-G).

Oh, and our cost is somewhere in the neighborhood of $50-70 per month for two big dogs (GSD and GR).

Last edited by akck; 10-22-2008 at 02:55 PM.. Reason: Added cost info
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Old 10-22-2008, 06:10 PM
6,764 posts, read 19,772,848 times
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Originally Posted by donsabi View Post
I agree that the price of quality dog food is becoming very expensive. A few years ago, with the dog food scare, I started making a homemade dog food which had all the good things and none of the bad things. At first I thought it was more expensive but when I actually priced it out I found that it was cheaper than any quality dog food. I can make a 3-4 day batch in about 30 minutes.
The way my dog HATES kibble (we started out with expensive ones from the Feed store but she hated both, to the 'cheaper' ones like Iams and Pediagree) and her dislike of canned I keep thinking I should just make homemade food.

Tonight I microwaved a few small chicken cutlets for training food, turned around and she grabbed one from the counter!! The only other time she did that was months ago when she stole a bagel from our son.

She loves REAL meat, real rice, and so on. Do you have any recipes for the homemade dog food and how much do you feed a dog on it?
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Old 10-23-2008, 02:22 PM
138 posts, read 565,768 times
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Originally Posted by GypsySoul22 View Post
She loves REAL meat, real rice, and so on. Do you have any recipes for the homemade dog food and how much do you feed a dog on it?
I just sent you a PM with a ton of info about raw feeding. I've been feeding my girls the raw diet and am so happy that I switched them. I researched the diet for 6 weeks before I switched them. I sent you some good books, websites and a wonderful yahoo group that is very helpful. Anyone else that would like any info, books, etc, please PM me and I'll be more then happy to help. Once you switch to raw, you won't go back. It's the best thing I could have ever done for my dogs.
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Old 10-25-2008, 09:46 AM
Location: NC, USA
7,088 posts, read 13,052,517 times
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Can't tell where you are from your post, if you live in the Southern part of the U.S. there is an agricultural co-op, Southern States, that produces their own dog food, it is, or so I'm told, packaged under another brand name, one of the "high priced spreads" but, at the co-op is is Called "Big Red Nuggets" We have two GSD's, they are both high energy, alert, have very shiny, soft, coats and have had no adverse food reactions. The co-op guarantees that your dog will eat it or will refund the cost. We get asked fairly frequently, "What do you feed your dogs?" Yes, they are beautiful, we hear this so often the temptation is to reply "Yes, I know", but that would not be nice. He, the large male is exactly 95lbs, she, his daughter, a little girl, a mere 65lbs are joys to deal with. We fed both of them their version of puppy food, then at a year old, switched them to the nuggets, neither balked at eating it, I doubt that your dogs would either, it is also inexpensive, right at $15 for a 50 lb bag. If you have questions, pm me.
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Old 10-25-2008, 06:54 PM
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I checked out Big Red dog food online and while you are not paying as much per bag, you have to feed them a lot more. I would have to feed my dogs two to three times as much as I feed them now. It has a lot of corn and wheat in it which I try to avoid as 2 of my dogs gain weight when I fed them dog food with corn in it.
Big Red Nuggets Dog Food - Southern States (http://www.southernstates.com/products/petfood/bigrednuggets.jsp - broken link)

You can only get the dog food in a few states according to their website.
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Old 10-25-2008, 07:17 PM
5 posts, read 11,441 times
Reputation: 17
Science Diet is not a very good food. Any food in which the first 5 ingredients are not a meat source is not good. Also, no corn or wheat glutten. I suggest raw feeding but knowing that it's not for everyone, there are several better foods for your dog. Canidae, Blue Buffalo, Innova Evo, and Timberwolf are just a few.
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Old 10-27-2008, 04:11 PM
Location: Up in the air
19,121 posts, read 26,703,943 times
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Originally Posted by Smo0ve View Post
Science Diet is not a very good food. Any food in which the first 5 ingredients are not a meat source is not good. Also, no corn or wheat glutten. I suggest raw feeding but knowing that it's not for everyone, there are several better foods for your dog. Canidae, Blue Buffalo, Innova Evo, and Timberwolf are just a few.
Not necessarily true.... any nutritionist will tell you (I was a dairy science major at Cal Poly SLO and took quite a few nutrition classes before switching majors) that corn is good for dogs as long as it's processed correctly. If any type of wheat, barley or corn is in a meal, ground, or gluten form it's easily digestible and provides antioxidants, vitamins and essential nutrients. In addition, AAFCO defines by-product as "The non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals. It includes, but is not limited to, lungs, spleen, kidneys, brain, livers, blood, bone, partially defatted low temperature fatty tissue, and stomachs and intestines freed of their contents. It does not include hair, horns, teeth and hoofs. It shall be suitable for use in animal food. If it bears name descriptive of its kind, it must correspond thereto." Basically, any food that contains an organ (beef liver, anyone?) but still maintains that it contains no by-products is not entirely telling the truth. A certain brand touts that they are by-product free, and the main ingredient is beef tripe. Also, the word organic, by law, has certain things that must be done before it can be labeled organic, holistic foods do not. Anyone (including Ol Roy, and Pedigree) could label their food holistic and not get any flak from AAFCO or the USDA. Science Diet may not be the best food out there, but it doesn't claim to be anything it isn't. It doesn't claim to be organic, or holistic or anything but what it is just to keep up with the hype. Just thought I'd throw in a couple of things, I know many people swear by raw diets, or home cooking meals and if I had time I'd do the same for my dog.
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