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Rotation diets?

Cram
March 23rd, 2007, 01:22 PM
I thought I'd start a new thread for this one.


Helix seems to be a bit picky with his food and has gradually stopped eating his Innova puppy food. It would be nice if he actually wanted to eat his kibble. We even tried mixing with canned food, but that was only exciting for him for about 2 days, and now he just sucks all the canned food off the kibble- which is mixed in very well and with a little water as- and eats very little kibble. This has gone on for a week, and we only leave it out for about 30 minutes in the morning and evening, so I'm just concerned he's not getting enough food as he only eats about half or less of what is recommended. He does get a bit of fruit or veggie and about 2 tbsp of yogurt daily, and a few tiny Rollover dog food bits as training treats, so that might be making up the difference. He certainly doesn't seem unhealthy, and his breed is known to be picky with food and primarily social eaters (they like to eat with their pack).

So now I'm thinking of using a rotation diet for Helix. Is this a good thing? I'm not sure exactly how a rotation diet works, or what the benefits are. Do you usually use the same company's product and just switch formulas now and again? How often do you switch? Is it hard on their digestive system to do it? I just wanted to be able to change Helix's main protein source now and again (Red meat, poultry, fish) and keep him from getting too bored with his kibble. So if I'm primarily advised against it, then we won't try it, but if it is ok, then we might try to use 3 different foods in rotation- Orijen grain-free puppy (poultry/fish based), California Naturals Lamb & Rice Puppy, and Natural Balance fish & sweet potato all life stages. Bleh it's just all so confusing!

KimandAutumn
March 23rd, 2007, 01:31 PM
there is a great article about this at:

http://www.dogfoodanalysis.com/changing_foods.htm

I do change Autumn's food every couple months. Off all the foods we've tried to date, I must say, I really like Go! Natural Chicken/Veg/Fruit but we've also tried, Go! Natural Salmon & Oatmeal, Solid Gold Beef & Barley, Eagle Pack Large/Giant Puppy, and DVP Fish and Sweet Potato.

Cram
March 23rd, 2007, 01:47 PM
Thanks! I can't believe I haven't seen that article before...

I would love to try the Go! Natural food, but I'm fairly certain I can't find it anywhere around here.

We're going to do a food sampling this weekend, to see what he likes best, with several different puppy or all life stages foods. Then we'll maybe pick 3 with different protein sources and do a rotation per small bag of food (it will take about a month to go through each bag- he's a small dog, only 9 lbs right now and about 15 lbs as an adult).

Any other advice?

Cram
March 23rd, 2007, 02:21 PM
Woohoo! Apparently we do have Go! Naturals here (carried at Petcetera of all places). So I'll be adding that to my taste test this weekend! I really like the ingredients in the Salmon & Oatmeal, so that should be a go. I'm assuming it's for all-life stages as there is puppy feeding info on the website?

KimandAutumn
March 23rd, 2007, 03:04 PM
If you have a Global Foods there they should carry sample pouches of kibbles. They are always quite generous with the sample when I go in.

I started feeding Autumn the Go! Chicken/Veg/Fruit when she was 5 months after she did so terrible on Eagle Pack. I know for sure the Chicken is a Diet for Life, not too sure about the Salmon & Oatmeal but I don't see why not; they have feeding guidelines for puppies on the bag.

The one reason I really like Go! is the customer service there is unbelievable. I send an email and Michelle calls me within the hour... unlike Eagle Pack who never even bothered to return an email or calls. :(

Cram
March 24th, 2007, 07:47 PM
So we went out today and got sample bags of California Naturals Lamb & Rice Puppy, Go! Naturals Salmon & Oatmeal, and Orijen Grain-free puppy food. We did a "taste testing" for Helix and put small amounts (about 1/8 cup) of each food and his current Innova Puppy on identical plates on the floor. Initially he just ran up to see what I was doing and went to the first one he came to- the Lamb & Rice. He grabbed a few kibbles and ran over to the rug with them to eat them. Then he came back and he smelled the Salmon & Oatmeal, ate a few kibbles there, then smelled the rest. When he came to the Orijen, well, he went absolutely nuts for it! He ate the whole amount on the plate and never left it once, then licked the plate clean! When he realized there wasn't anymore, he went back to the Salmon & Oatmeal and ate that plate, but less enthusiastically. He smelled the Innova and Lamb & Rice a couple of times, but didn't really touch them again at all.

So, the Orijen is definitely our kibble of choice at the moment. It's the cheapest at $16 per bag (2.5 kg) and it's grain-free regional ingredients. The Go! Naturals will also be part of our regular rotation. We'll start slowly mixing the Orijen in with his Innova as his current bag is almost done and we'll try a bag of Orijen. I'm super glad he liked it because it was my favourite choice of all the kibbles!