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doggy nutrition

June 1st, 2005, 11:33 PM
I walked in to a small pet store yesterday and the lady who owned it and is a doggy nutritionist said that dogs cannot get enough nutrients on cooked food (canned or dry). She said that either you need to feed them raw, or you need to give them supplements. She suggested Nupro or C-Biotic, and fish/flax oils and/or pumpkin. I'm wondering how many people out there feed supplements with their dogs food. I asked the vet about it a while ago and he said it's not necessary, but he wasn't a good vet so I don't know how much I trust his opinion.

The pet store lady seemed to really believe in what she was saying, she wasn't just trying to sell me stuff because I brought her in the ingredients of a food I feed my dog now and she said it looked good, even though she didn't sell it.

She also suggested it was good to switch up dog food once and a while, which I had heard could be upsetting to the dog's digestive system. Has anyone heard anything about this? It makes sense to me as a human that variety would be good but then I'm not sure if the same rule would apply to dogs?

June 2nd, 2005, 12:19 AM
I have heard ALL of that, but I don't believe it. If a food is not balanced, the dog will not do well on it and you'll see it somehow-- lack of energy, icky or not the best fur, allergies and itching, craving certain foods, etc.

I do realize that some stuff is lost in the cooking process, which is why I add the Solid Gold Sea Meal, but even without it, my doggies were great on it.

I thought pumpkin was just to harden stools? I don't believe it magically has every nutrient that food is missing. Flax either. Someone on another thread said that some doggies have a really hard time with flax.

The variety is in the food. The higher end foods have good protein sources and fruits and veggies. I know a lady who switches the food EVERY BAG. She also is a firm believer in switching and will try to convince anybody. How do you know how well a dog is doing if you don't allow him/her to adjust? I know that Boo and Jemma took MONTHS to adapt to the Solid Gold-- imagine if I switched them to something else after the first bag? I don't believe that you should switch for that reason.

My old dobie lived till 13 on one food his whole life, and it wasn't a good one. My lab lived till 14 on an even worse food.

What about the Lynx up north that tries its best to eat ONLY snowshoe hare? I don't think he would like to switch it up... Dogs are carnivores-- carnivores rarely switch between food types unless they are desperate.

June 2nd, 2005, 06:01 AM
I would also agree that switching with every bag is a bad idea. When I switched to Solid Gold it took months before I started to see the wonderful results.
I read about Flaxseed oil and decided to give it a try on my golden who at the time was shedding like crazy. I knew it could cause itching in some dogs. Within days he began scratching like crazy. I stopped giving him the oil and within 2 days the scratching stopped so if you decide to give it a try watch your dog.

June 2nd, 2005, 09:37 AM
That's one of the things I like about our dog food... we feed Blue Buffalo, and it actally has pieces in it with nutrients that haven't been cooked. They're cold formed, and make up about 1/4 of the food. :)

June 2nd, 2005, 09:45 AM
I agree that switching food all the time is hard on a dogs system. Our Sheena lived to be 16 and she ate the same thing all her life - and it was a cheap food. Right before we got Hazel, I did lots of research on dog foods and decided to buy a better food. Out of my first three choices, the only one sold locally was Nutro so I went with that. When we started to run low, I tried to buy more, but the feed store that carried it kept giving me the run around on why they didn't have any more puppy food. I finally resorted to ordering the Solid Gold online (which had been my first choice anyway). It should be here tomorrow, but in the meantime I had to do something so I bought a bag of Eaglepak Holistic. Hazel has been fine, but poor Parker is having a tough time with the food switching. I will be glad when the Solid Gold comes in and because I will keep ordering it online, I won't have to worry about switching the food again until its time for them to be on adult food. I also think that if the food has the right ingredients, you don't need to supplement it.

June 2nd, 2005, 09:46 AM
Ok...that's something new to me. Flax can cause itching??? We have been giving Odin flax daily since we had him! Maybe his itching is that and not the food! I feel so dumb. I had NEVER heard that flax can cause itching!

June 2nd, 2005, 11:10 AM
LOL the things people know that benefit others... Funny you haven't seen it on another thread. I know there was one last week that talked about flax being hard on doggies. I assume you're going to try stopping for a while? :)

June 2nd, 2005, 12:09 PM
I was probably the one that mentioned it in last weeks thread. :D
I know it caused Hunter my 16 month old to scratch like mad. The scratching started within a day of giving it to him.
I now use Omega 3-6-9 oils instead and he has no problem with it. The only reason I started giving it to him was because he was shedding very badly. The shedding is almost nill now but I am almost afraid to stop giving it to him.

June 2nd, 2005, 12:58 PM
We put Meater on it and he scratched and scrathched I thought he had dry skin tried everything. I ran out of it one day and needed to get more but had not used any that week and he stopped scratching so I bought some and tried it again and he dug and dug poor boy! So we do not use it anymore. So Raingirl that might be your problem with Odin. :D

June 2nd, 2005, 01:08 PM
Darn. We just threw out the food bag for his current food. I think it has flax in it. Anyone have a bag of the costco Kirkland lamb and rice food who can tell me if it has flax in it?? If it does, I will stop that food asap and get something new. I had been alternating flax capsules and salmon oil capsules, and sometimes sprinkling ground flax seed on his food.

June 2nd, 2005, 02:05 PM
I used to give Diego DermCaps, which is a combination of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, for the treatment of ichy flaky skin when Diego was younger, under the recommendation from our vet.

It worked really well for him: stopped the iching and scratching, also stopped the hair thinning. After he finished one bottle, we haven't given him any more supplement.

June 3rd, 2005, 10:30 AM
I have heard ALL of that, but I don't believe it. If a food is not balanced, the dog will not do well on it and you'll see it somehow-- lack of energy, icky or not the best fur, allergies and itching, craving certain foods, etc.

I guess her point was that you don't see it until they have been on the food a long time and the lack of nutrition builds up and the dogs get cancer and other weird things. I guess it would depend on how sensitive the dog was, and what it was prone to naturally? I guess she was selling it more as a preventitive measure. She did give me samples of one which I put on my dogs food and she loves the taste of it, might be worth it just to make her food taste better. I think I would agree on the not changing the dogs food though, every time I do Kayla gets the runs, how can that be good?

June 3rd, 2005, 11:48 AM
I know- it takes so long to switch, then so long to adjust too. My doggies are very limited because of their allergies (I refuse to feed them different foods unless I have no choice). I'm sticking with the Solid Gold until something more tasty comes along (along with extra money).