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Skierrobbie September 4th, 2012 10:22 AM

Alternatives to Acana
I have a 5 month old German Shepherd named Lola. She had been on Medi-Cal large breed puppy food. Countless friends and people on this website have suggested that MediCal isn't a particularly good food so I had started to transition Lola over to Acana's puppy food. I had been doing this slowly and gradually, but the moment I introduced Acana, her stools became softer to the point over the past several days she had serious diarhea. I fed her MediCal last night and again this morning and her stools are suddenly solid again.

I understand that there are a lot of better foods out there than MediCal. Can anybody suggest a good alternative to Acana? My town has both a Global Pet Foods and a PetValu, so I have options. My budget is a bit tight which is why I liked the Acana - GPF was selling it for $60/bag roughly while the Vet was charging $80/bag for the same size. However, I will spring for the right food if it's in the best interests of my Pup.


Loki Love September 4th, 2012 10:48 AM

It may take a while for your pup to get used to the food - how long have you been giving it? Also, keep in mind you wont' have to feed as much as you were feeding of the other (over feeding can cause tummy troubles).

That all said - it may end up being too rich for your pup. There are lots of great alternatives out there - but it depends if you want to stick with grain-free or grain-inclusive.

Marty11 September 4th, 2012 11:11 AM

The debate is grain or no grain.......when I switched to grain free it took one of my dogs a couple weeks to have normal stools again. However the dog I have now i have decided with grain. She is on Addiction Kangaroo and her coat has improved from the Acana. I do feel the Acana and Orijen is good food. It's personal preference what you want to feed. Vet way.

Choochi September 4th, 2012 11:29 AM

Yes it may take a while for your dog to get used to the food and it is possible that she will never do great on it. Acana and Orijen can be too rich for some dogs. I would give it a few more weeks before making a decision to switch to some thing else. There are tons of good foods out there now. Taste of the Wild, Go Naturals... just two that come to mind.

Rgeurts September 4th, 2012 01:16 PM

Hi there :)

I would be very weary of [B]any[/B] food made in a Diamond Foods plant. They include Diamond Naturals, Canidae (though they are in the process of getting their own manufacturing plant, I may try it at that point), Natural Balance, Taste of the Wild and several other "high end" brands. They have had several recalls, and most are very recent. I would also avoid Blue Buffalo, for the same reason. Both of mine actually got sick on the health bars that were recalled, and I was unaware until I had fed them.

I also use Addiction, but I feed the Salmon Bleu, which my boys are doing excellent on (I have one with confirmed allergies/food sensitivities and one with suspected allergies), though the dry food is a very small part of what they get. The Honest Kitchen is what I was feeding, and they were doing excellent on it until we learned he could only have beef. In Canada, you can't get the grain-free beef which is called Love, so we started feeding NRG free-range beef. It's grain-free and potato-free. Just fruits, veggies and beef. It's a dehydrated raw and both my boys are doing amazing on it. No more skin issues and no tummy troubles. Good luck! :)

Marty11 September 4th, 2012 03:14 PM

NRG is great food!!! As well dry food is only part of my dog's meal. She gets "Weruva" canned and any meats I cook and sardines.

Rgeurts September 5th, 2012 01:37 PM

[QUOTE=Marty11;1045684]NRG is great food!!! As well dry food is only part of my dog's meal. She gets "Weruva" canned and any meats I cook and sardines.[/QUOTE]

My boys LOVE sardines too. But I have to be so careful with what I give Nookie now. He has struvites and has been struggling with bladder infections and stones since the beginning of the year, poor little guy. Apparently the magnesium in the fish aggravates struvites, so what he's getting in the Salmon Bleu is about all he can take (he gets very little of it).

And yes, I love the NRG! We've been feeding it for almost 3 months now and both Nookie and Montana seem to be doing great on it. Montana is a very picky eater, but he always licks his bowl clean, then helps Nookie clean his :laughing:

NRG is costly, though. That's the only downside to feeding it.

Skierrobbie September 6th, 2012 09:20 PM

NRG? Is that the name of the food or is it a shortform for something I should know? Global Pet Foods took back my partial bag and gave me full credit for the bag in exchange for First Mate - a local breeder of Shepherds uses it with great results so I am hopeful!

Rgeurts September 6th, 2012 11:58 PM

[QUOTE=Skierrobbie;1045850]NRG? Is that the name of the food or is it a shortform for something I should know? Global Pet Foods took back my partial bag and gave me full credit for the bag in exchange for First Mate - a local breeder of Shepherds uses it with great results so I am hopeful![/QUOTE]

First Mate "was" a good food. I was actually considering it and even went as far as to go buy a bag. I had done a lot of research on different foods and where they are made, and decided I really liked the looks of it. It showed fish as the first 3 ingredients on the website. When i got to the store, just before I paid for the bag, I decided to look over the ingredients again and it's a good thing I did... the very first ingredient in their food is now potato. They hadn't updated their website with the new food changes they had made.

NRG is the actual name of the food. It's a dehydrated raw food and has only free-range meat, fruits and veggies (plus eggshell for calcium). It's the only dehydrated food that doesn't have any added vitamins/minerals. All the nutrition comes completely from the whole foods, which is important for my guy. He has an auto-immune disease, chronic tummy/gastro issues, EPI and other problems. He's so sensitive to everything and has grand mal seizures, so the more natural for him, the better. The one downside to NRG is the cost. If you buy the biggest box, it's the best value. It's 9 KG and Global orders it for me for $210. Some places charge as much as $240-$270. I have 2 dogs, one weighs 93 lbs, the other weighs 55 lbs. a 9 KG box lasts me for 21 days and is 2/3 of their diet. This is a link if you're interested :)


kitona September 7th, 2012 07:00 AM

Glad to hear that NRG is back to being a quality food. I fed that to my dogs for a couple of years starting 6 years ago. It was great and they both looked fabulous. Then they started looking not-so-good and I was noticing a high ratio of un-cracked pumpkin shells and much less dried meat in the food. When I questioned the company, their reply was that dogs still benefited from the micronutrients in the pumpkin seed even tho the shell was undigestable. Fair enough, but no way was I going to pay what they were charging for all those pumpkin seeds and too little else. The food quality soured me on the product and the insufficent information soured me on the company.

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