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Merrick's First Ingredient

chocolatecoffee
June 3rd, 2006, 03:19 PM
I've been feeding my pups Merrick for a little under a year now and they've been doing great on it. Two of them get dry Wilderness Blend with various canned mixed in and the other just gets the dry Wilderness Blend. I've noticed an incredible difference in everything from coat to poop to tear stains. The only thing I've been concerned about for a while is that the first ingredient in all of their dry formulas isn't a specific meat meal. In the Wilderness Blend it's Buffalo, while in some of the other formulas it's Beef, Chicken, or Turkey, but never a "dry" ingredient. The Puppy Plate is the only formula where a meat meal precedes the other ingredients. Here's the ingredients of the dry Wilderness Blend:

Buffalo, Oatmeal, Barley, Salmon Meal, Venison,Whole Brown Rice, Canola Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols a source of Natural Vitamin E and Ascorbic Acid, a source of Vitamin C), Flaxseed, Potatoes, Carrots, Peas, Dried Chicken Liver, Whole Apples, Dicalcium Phosphate, Calcium Carbonate, Potassium Chloride, Lysine, Guar Gum, Salt, Choline Chloride, Zinc Amino Acid Complex, Whole Blueberries, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Whole Clove Garlic, Chondroitin Sulfate, Glucosamine Hydrochloride, Natural Venison Flavor, Chicory Root, Marigold Extract, Lactobacillus Plantarum, Enterocococcus Faecium, Lactobacillus Casei, Lactobacillus Acidophilus, Natural Celery Flavor, Iron Amino Acid Complex, Vitamin E Supplement, Manganese Amino Acid Complex, Natural Caramel Color, Vitamin A Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Copper Amino Acid Complex, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin D3, Niacin, Lecithin, Ribofl avin Supplement, Biotin, Ethylenediamine Dihydriodide, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Cobalt Amino Acid Complex, Folic Acid, Thiamine Mononitrate, Sodium Selenite.

Crude Protein (Not Less Than) 24.0%
Crude Fat (Not Less Than) 14.0%
Crude Fiber (Not More Than) 3.5%
Moisture (Not More Than) 10.0%


I've been trying to e-mail the company for a while through their Customer Service address, but none of my e-mails go through, they keep coming back. My dogs like this food the best and I've been incredibly happy with the food thus far, but I haven't found the best customer service. Once I asked for samples, they asked for my address, and I never heard from them again and now my e-mails won't even go through. Does this food have enough meat in it, or should I think about switching?

mafiaprincess
June 3rd, 2006, 04:50 PM
You know.. I have all 4 adult dry samples.. And I was looking at that too. Since the meat isn't a meal, oatmeal and others are in the food in larger quantities than the meat..

Whether she likes them or not I'm going to add barking at the moon in her food rather than the merricks I think...

Puppyluv
June 3rd, 2006, 06:58 PM
My girl used to be on Wellness WF & SP, which is considered a "first rate food". It's first ingredient isn't a meal either, and there are 2 grains before the first meal:
Whitefish, Ground Barley (dehulled), Rye Flour, Menhaden Fish Meal, Ground Pearled Barley, Sweet Potatoes, Canola Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols, a natural source of vitamin E), Tomato Pomace (natural source of lycopene), Natural Fish Flavor, Flaxseed, Dicalcium Phosphate, Calcium Carbonate, Potassium Chloride.

Despite this, the food is very good, and I doubt anyone would say that because the 1st ingredient is wet, it shouldn't be fed. I think you should be fine on Merricks.

(Merricks has more protein than wellness too:
Guaranteed Analysis
Crude Protein Not Less Than 22.0%
Crude Fat Not Less Than 12.0%
Crude Fiber Not More Than 3.0%
Moisture Not More Than 11.0%
Omega 6 Fatty Acids* Not Less Than 2.70%
Omega 3 Fatty Acids* Not Less Than 1.10%
Beta-Carotene* Not Less Than 5 mg/kg
Lycopene* Not Less Than 0.37 mg/kg
Taurine* Not Less Than 0.09% )

rainbow
June 3rd, 2006, 07:36 PM
I've also been going to ask this question because I'm feeding Timberwolf Organics Wilderness Elk formula right now and the ingredients are:

Fresh Elk, Salmon Meal, Millet, Sweet Potatoes, Oats, Flaxseed, Carrot, Watercress, Spinach, Celery, Parsley, Fennel Seed, Wild Salmon Oil, Atlantic Kelp, Alfalfa, Potassium Chloride, Currants, Cranberries, Pears, Figs, Thyme, Anise Seed, Ground Cinnamon Bark, Fenugreek, Garlic Pieces, Sunflower Seeds, Sesame Seeds, Apples, Chicory Root, Spirulina, Choline Chloride, Lecithin, Probiotics: (Lactobacillus Acidophilus, Lactobacillus Casei, Lactobacillus Lactis, Bacillus Bifidum, Streptococcus Diacetilactis, Bacillus Subtillus), Taurine, Mixed Tocopherols (a source of vitamin E), Lysine, Zinc Proteinate, Iron Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Thiamine, Methionine, Carnitine, Niacin, Vitamin A Supplement, Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Iodine Proteinate, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Biotin, Folic Acid, Pyridoxine (a source of vitamin B6), Cobalt Proteinate, Papain, Yucca Schidigera Extract.

The first few ingredients in Solid Gold Wolf King are:

Bison, salmon meal, brown rice, millet, cracked pearl barley, oatmeal, rice bran, canola oil

So, neither of those have a "meal" first either. I'd like to know why there isn't "elk meal" or "bison meal" :confused:

mafiaprincess
June 3rd, 2006, 07:39 PM
We are on wolf king.. I wondered that too.

Especially when it scored 97 using the grading system.. and other stuff I dislike scored higher.

Found the lady who made the system. She's a dane person. She's looking at rescoring some stuff minorly.

Prin
June 4th, 2006, 02:57 AM
mafiaprincess, if you score wolf king yourself, you'll see it's higher than 97... (I did the math, and I'm not sure how they got that answer).

For the Merrick, I agree with Puppyluv. The stats look good- even the omega 3 to omega 6 ratio is great. And for meat, the dried meat is further down, yes, but you have three meats in there. If you added all three up and made them the same meat, it's possible that it could be number one on the list. It's just that Salmon meal is #1 of the three meats, but that's why the omega 3:6 is so good (that and the flax).
Buffalo, Oatmeal, Barley, Salmon Meal, Venison,Whole Brown Rice, Canola Oil
I think it's good. Plus your other grains are pretty digestible ones too. And if your dogs are doing great on it, I definitely wouldn't switch now...
I hate crappy customer service, but I'm surprised that you're having trouble with Merrick's. I always get quick answers and good service from them... You must be the bad luck customer (the one that gets every glitch and every customer service loop-hole :o).

For Timberwolf:
Timberwolf's Wilderness elk has meat first and the rest is good stuff. The grains are the most digestible (millet is very digestible), and oats give you the fiber without the hardeners, and they add nutrition too (they're not JUST fiber).

Even if their foods look a litte less meaty, the "grains" they have are so much more digestible than the usual ones and there's so much other good stuff in there to balance it all out.

chocolatecoffee
June 4th, 2006, 03:29 AM
Thanks for the replies!


For the Merrick, I agree with Puppyluv. The stats look good- even the omega 3 to omega 6 ratio is great. And for meat, the dried meat is further down, yes, but you have three meats in there. If you added all three up and made them the same meat, it's possible that it could be number one on the list. It's just that Salmon meal is #1 of the three meats, but that's why the omega 3:6 is so good (that and the flax).

Buffalo, Oatmeal, Barley, Salmon Meal, Venison,Whole Brown Rice, Canola Oil

I think it's good. Plus your other grains are pretty digestible ones too. And if your dogs are doing great on it, I definitely wouldn't switch now...
Ah, that makes sense. It's preferable to have a couple different meat sources than one large meat source, right? I know my dogs wouldn't be very happy with me if I took their Merrick away, especially Panna :p. I'm amazed every time I see Mocha turn her nose up to her homecooked meals so she can go eat her Merrick.

I hate crappy customer service, but I'm surprised that you're having trouble with Merrick's. I always get quick answers and good service from them... You must be the bad luck customer (the one that gets every glitch and every customer service loop-hole ).
I only had those two experiences with them, so it might just be a coincidence. When you e-mailed them about the beef tripe, what e-mail did you use? I've been trying the Customer Service e-mail that's on their website, but none of my e-mails will go through.

Thanks again!

Puppyluv
June 4th, 2006, 04:35 AM
Ah, that makes sense. It's preferable to have a couple different meat sources than one large meat source, right?



hmmm not necessarily... if your dog has allergies for example, it's a good idea to keep it at one protein source, and if possible, one carb source too. The fewer the ingredients, the better chance that the dog won't react to it (unless of course your dog is allergic to those few ingredients)

chocolatecoffee
June 4th, 2006, 11:10 AM
hmmm not necessarily... if your dog has allergies for example, it's a good idea to keep it at one protein source, and if possible, one carb source too. The fewer the ingredients, the better chance that the dog won't react to it (unless of course your dog is allergic to those few ingredients)
If your dog isn't allergy to anything, is it still better to keep it down to one protein source to try to avoid allergies? I've heard people say that while foods with less common ingredients are good, it kind of puts you in a tough position if you discover that your dog does have allergies. In that case, is it better to keep any dog, regardless of whether they currently have allergies or not, on a more simple food?

Thanks!

Prin
June 4th, 2006, 12:54 PM
In my experience, you can't really prevent allergies... And seeing as though your dogs have already been fed these meats, it's probably more likely for them to become allergic to them if you stop feeding them than if you just continued (i.e. while they're off it, they build up antibodies to it).

If they do get allergies, it might be hard to find a food without any of those meats in it, but then again, allergies to meat are much more rare than allergies to grains, and it's fairly easy to find different foods that have different grains.

rainbow
June 4th, 2006, 01:12 PM
So, neither of those have a "meal" first either. I'd like to know why there isn't "elk meal" or "bison meal"

So, Prin, do you know why there isn't a bison meal or an elk meal? If they can do it with chicken and lamb then why not bison and elk? :confused:

Prin
June 4th, 2006, 01:16 PM
Money. It's just too expensive. There aren't any elk or bison factory farms (as far as I know, I HOPE).

rainbow
June 4th, 2006, 01:29 PM
I could be wrong but I thought Alberta had some or even northeast B.C. (which may as well be AB :D ) I'll have to try googling it. :D

rainbow
June 4th, 2006, 04:33 PM
There's lots of bison and elk farms.....everywhere.

Prin
June 4th, 2006, 07:03 PM
Factory farms? Or just family farms? :(

mafiaprincess
June 4th, 2006, 07:55 PM
Glad to know WK scored higher. I didn't do the math. Having it score lower than foods I think are mediocre made me unhappy.

I wondered if it was cost for things like bison making them not 'meals' too.

Puppyluv
June 4th, 2006, 08:07 PM
where is this "food rating system"? I would love to take a gander.

chocolatecoffee
June 4th, 2006, 08:12 PM
I was just thinking - why wouldn't they list the dry product at the appropriate spot to show the consumer exactly where it falls? Just for marketing as a lot of people would look at it, realize that a meat isn't the first ingredient, and pass the food by?

Also, these are the ingredients for the Grammy's Pot Pie dry:
Chicken, Oatmeal, Barley, Chicken Meal, Whole Brown Rice, Canola Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols a source of Natural Vitamin E and Ascorbic Acid, a source of Vitamin C), Flaxseed, Potatoes, Carrots, Peas, Dried Chicken Liver, Whole Apples, Dicalcium Phosphate, Calcium Carbonate, Potassium Chloride, Lysine, Guar Gum, Salt, Choline Chloride, Zinc Amino Acid Complex, Whole Blueberries, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Whole Clove Garlic, Chondroitin Sulfate, Glucosamine Hydrochloride, Dried Chicken, Chicory Root, Marigold Extract, Lactobacillus Plantarum, Enterocococcus Faecium, Lactobacillus Casei, Lactobacillus Acidophilus, Natural Celery Flavor, Iron Amino Acid Complex, Vitamin E Supplement, Manganese Amino Acid Complex, Natural Color (tumeric), Vitamin A Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Copper Amino Acid Complex, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin D3, Niacin, Lecithin, Ribofl avin Supplement, Biotin, Ethylenediamine Dihydriodide, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Cobalt Amino Acid Complex, Folic Acid, Thiamine Mononitrate, Sodium Selenite.

Guaranteed Analysis:
Crude Protein (Not Less Than) 23.0%
Crude Fat (Not Less Than) 14.0%
Crude Fiber (Not More Than) 3.0%
Moisture (Not More Than) 10.0%
They have both Chicken and Chicken Meal listed and they're the only two protein sources before the fat, so in this situation, would the two Chicken ingredients likely fall as the first ingredient after cooking? Also, what's the advantage to listing it like they did?

Thanks for all of your help!

mafiaprincess
June 4th, 2006, 08:30 PM
In the dog food forum Puppyluv..
Grading kibble or something like that.

I found the original poster of it though, and she wants to make some changes to it soon.

rainbow
June 4th, 2006, 11:43 PM
Factory farms? Or just family farms? :(

Don't know. When I googled elk and bison farms I got lots to look at. Don't have time right now to check into it. :(

Puppyluv
June 4th, 2006, 11:46 PM
I know for sure that BC, AB and SASK are all involved in Bison farming (http://www.agf.gov.bc.ca/aboutind/products/livestck/bison.htm)
I don't see it much here, but when I lived in Calgary, Bison had a prominent display area in the meat section of grocery stores.

Prin
June 5th, 2006, 12:27 AM
:(

For the grading system, this is the original thread: http://www.pets.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=24797&highlight=grade+solid+gold
Back then, when I did the math, Wolf King came out with 106.:thumbs up (plus I put in my suggestions to make the grading better ;))

rainbow
June 5th, 2006, 12:43 AM
I know for sure that BC, AB and SASK are all involved in Bison farming (http://www.agf.gov.bc.ca/aboutind/products/livestck/bison.htm)
I don't see it much here, but when I lived in Calgary, Bison had a prominent display area in the meat section of grocery stores.

Manitoba and Ontario as well from what I read. Also lots of places in the U.S.A.

Do you know the answer to Prin's question "Are they factory farmsor family farms?"

Prin
June 5th, 2006, 12:45 AM
Well, the site Puppyluv posted said this:
There are 55 bison game farms and a total of approximately 3800 bison in BCSo that's like 69 each, so probably no factory farms there.:o