Questions about dog behavior and training? Send them to:

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Fourteen Good Dog Foods (and why I chose the one I did for my dogs)

Confused about which dog food is best for your pup? Wondering why Old Shep lived for 16 years on Purina Dog Chow when, suddenly, that brand of food is no longer "good enough" for today's pampered pooches?

Read what our U.S. Food and Drug Administration has to say about dog food here:

It's a long article, but very readable. Some of the highlights: the difference between "all natural" and "organic." The weighing process, the flavoring process, the difference between whole meats and meat by-products, the difference between whole grains and corn, and much more.

If you haven't already switched from a grocery-store brand dog food to one of the super-premiums, you'll want to do so. Yes, the "fancy" foods are more expensive...but you're paying for digestible quality that will save you money on vet bills and most likely extend your dog's life.

We used to feed Pro Plan. We also tried our dogs on Science Diet, Nutro, Iams and Sensible Choice. But after our last Rottie, Teddy, died of cancer, we decided to switch to something even better. We jumped into that new category of "super foods," most of which we'd never heard of before. We knew they'd be more expensive and harder to get, but we figured our dogs would be worth it.

We wanted our dogs' new food to be free of chemical preservatives, food colorings, and artificial flavors. We wanted to avoid corn, since it's linked to so many allergy conditions. We wanted something with ABSOLUTELY NO meat by-products or strange animal parts. And we wanted something that the FDA had tested to be "human-grade," which meant all ingredients were certified as disease-free, fresh, and fit for human consumption. We wanted something that would be easy and fast to digest, since we'd had lots of upset tummies. And of course we wanted something the dogs would actually ENJOY. They had NOT enjoyed Science Diet!

Artemis, Wellness, Innova, Blue Buffalo, Canidae, Newman's Own, California Natural, Flint River Ranch, Solid Gold, Fromms, Merrick, Bil-Jac, Dynamite....these are some of the super-premium brands I researched that offer optimum nutrition and health for your dog. At that time, none of these was available in Yakima stores. You could only get them by mail-order, or by driving a great distance to a distributor. I happened to find one that I could get shipped directly to my house and the shipping was free. It had all the other qualities I'd been looking for, so I ordered our first bag of Flint River Ranch. My dogs literally sucked it down!

Since then, there are many more super-premium dog foods that have come onto the market, and many are now available off the shelf in Yakima pet stores and feed stores. We've stuck with Flint River Ranch for six years, though, because we've had such wonderful results with it...and because I can get it delivered! Now that we're living in the Montana boonies, it's even greater than ever to have UPS deliver our dog food to our doorstep!

Most of the above-mentioned "good fourteen" are about the same price. And, by the way, NONE of these brands was implicated in last year's PET FOOD RECALL. I'm staying with Flint River Ranch because of the phenomenal success our own dogs have had with it, (my Swissy, Atlas, just turned 12 years old!) and because of the free UPS shipping. I've also heard dozens of wonderful stories from my customers over the years, about the benefits they've seen in their own dogs after feeding Flint River Ranch.

And what about Old Shep who lived so long on Purina Dog Chow? Well, he falls into the same category as the 90-year-old man who smokes a pack of cigarettes every day and has two shots of brandy every night. Sometimes it's extra-strong genes...or just dumb luck.

For more "super-premium" foods, simply Google "super premium dog food."

1 comment:

Dottie Walton-Luglan said...

We have used Flint River for several years and our dog loves it. My brother in New York State just got a puppy and is interested in finding the best food for his dog. I encouraged him to checkout Flint River, but if he wants something available in the local stores, this article will help him to find something of high quality. Thanks for the info.