Is change in pet food a good thing? - Page 1

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by ZweiGSD on 10 August 2018 - 15:08

A post in another topic reminded me about posting this article. If you feed the same food all the time check the ingredient label periodically for any changes. Susan Thixton/Truth About Pet Food puts out a very informative newsletter. I would recommend subscribing to it.

by joanro on 10 August 2018 - 17:08

Good publication, Zwei.

I have made those observations myself and do keep a check on what I'm feeding.
One should ask, as I have pointed out on other discussion boards, how can the industry possibly supply enough American Bison for the dog food industry.
Even importing enough Water Buffalo does not compute.
Supplying enough wild cought Salmon is another ingredient that is questionable.
In fact, most of the ' exotic' meat sources are suspect...there are billions of chickens and beef, and lambs for supplying the dog food industry, but I have serious doubts about the validity of sources for meats such as Bison and Slamon.
The industry uses what's cheapest that month. One inch square of buffalo scrap is probably all that is used to make the claim for buffalo...but I think it's more likely a lie.

by Mindhunt on 10 August 2018 - 18:08

I get so tired of the changes made to dog food.  It happened with Flint River Ranch which my dogs were on for years and did well on.  Suddenly they started having problems and I find out that the ingredients changed.  I recently opened a bag of Earthborn Grain Free Lamb and the size and color are both different, I am looking up to see if ingredients changed.

Another thing that can change is where the ingredients come from or if there are seasonal differences.  Recently with Honest Kitchen Chicken Grainfree, the consistency changed to a gelatinous slimy yuck.  It would slide out of the mixing bowl in a gelatinous glop and no matter how thin I made it, it had to be physically divided with a spoon rather than pour 1/3 in this bowl, a 1/3 in the next and a 1/3 in the final.  I had to physically separate it with a spoon because it wanted to stay together like glue.  I called the company and they said it was a seasonal change in their flax and they are looking into it.  They sent me 2 replacement boxes of limited ingredient chicken grain free but my dogs will not touch it.  They LOVED the previous non seasonal flax food and would lick the stainless off the steel if I let them.  Now they will NOT touch any Honest Kitchen grainfree food.

Thanks for the link Zwei

by GSCat on 10 August 2018 - 18:08

I hated when Orijen started its U.S. product... definitely inferior ingredients to the Canadian... one example of the resulting content difference can be seen by checking the glucosamine levels: some U.S. products are about half :-(

And now, various class action suits allege heavy metal and BPA contamination in the U.S. products.

Just like human food, "new and improved," always means more profits for the manufacturer and less quality for the consumer. Unfortunately, pet food doesn't have to say anything about changes.


I would rather pay more seasonally to get the same food than to have stuff changed, especially without my knowledge. This is the same as buying fruit/veggies in and out of season.

by ZweiGSD on 10 August 2018 - 18:08

Mindhunt -

Interesting about the Honest Kitchen. I rotate between the grain free chicken and beef varieties and never noticed anything. However, I add other ingredients (including gelatin) into it so maybe that is why.

by Mindhunt on 10 August 2018 - 23:08

Zwei -

It was during the first part of summer and only a limited batch of it.  My vets who got me started on it noticed the same thing, one of their dogs ate it, the others refused.  I can not get my dogs to eat it now and  because the company replaced my chicken with a different batch and my beef with a different batch, unfortunately the same thing then they replaced those with limited ingredient so I have total 6 boxes for the cost of the first two (rest free)




by Prager on 12 August 2018 - 17:08

The raw diet does not change if you use organic, non-GMO, grass-fed and not irradiated raw meat sources. But most importantly, keep in mind that all processed food is void of live enzymes which are absolutely necessary for the health, survival and longevity of the dog. Animals are born with a certain amount of enzymes which they can not regenerate on their own except by eating enzyme contained in raw food. Enzymes start getting destroyed by temps of 118 F and higher which is not that high at all and by other food processing like irradiation, adding preservatives, dehydration and so on.
All raw food contains enzymes which are used for its own digestion. These enzymes thus preserve and replenish animal's own enzymes. If the animal ( including human) do not get the outside source of enzymes which is in raw food (or as raw as possible food) then in order to digest the food, they have to divert their own enzymes which however are needed elsewhere to run the organism. While animal's organism recycles it's own enzymes those enzymes through the life of the organism, do get chemically corrupted and thus do wear out and if not replenished from outside raw source the animal ages faster because the enzymes became scarce and in order to digest cooked processed food the organism must pirate these enzymes from their other tasks elsewhere ( like in brain, heart and so on) and when these organs wear out the dog ( man or any organism) eventually dies. Keep in mind that absolutely everything in a body must have enzymes to function or it will die.
Also, processing of a dog food is designed to kill harmful and with this, it also kills beneficial microorganisms and enzymes. That is what makes processed food being able to survive on shelves for years. Thus do not get fooled by so-called adding of enzymes to processed dog food which is IMO doubtful because the live enzymes would digest ( rot) the processed dog food in the bag which would negate and be counterproductive to preserving of the food. Also, keep in mind that there are estimated at least 40 000 different enzymes and most are not even known. So even if live enzymes would be added it would be only a handful of them like protease, lipase, amylase and so on.
Here is my favorite test. Take a raw meat and dry dog food and expose it to outdoor elements. The raw food ( meat) will rot quickly and will be soon full of maggots and mold and so on, while the processed dog food will stay the same for very long time and no mold or maggots will touch it. Yes? So let me ask you a question. Why would you want to feed your dog something which not even maggots want to eat?


by Mindhunt on 13 August 2018 - 15:08

Prager, you gave very good information. Thumbs Up

However, not everyone is in a place where they can afford to feed raw.  I used to but current living situation precludes raw feeding of my three.  They have been on high quality kibble with supplements to make up for what is lost in feeding kibble.  I do believe the combination of raw and high quality kibble with supplements have kept my dogs going to the point the 15 year old is slowing down considerably this past year and the 13 year old is starting to slow down.  (Both have issues with back end, 15 yo from severe beatings with a bat and 13 yo from born without a left hip socket and dysplastic right hip).  I get annoyed when kibble companies change ingredients or sources without warning.  I know I stopped using chemical products for controlling fleas and ticks, when my dogs got poisoned with the switch in their flea/tick medication ingredients from USA source to Chinese source.  My dogs developed significant neuro issues such as ataxia, tremors, vomiting, drooling, and at one point (I was already getting the SUV ready to take them to vet) my oldest began pressing his head against the wall and making the weirdest noises.  They are ok but it was close.  They also developed issues with their heartworm medication that involved vomiting, neuro issues, and scratching their skin raw.  So we use 100% organic flea, tick, and heartworm prevention and it has been successful for the past 4 years.  I wish there was more oversight of the dog food and medication industry.


by Prager on 13 August 2018 - 15:08

I know that feeding raw meat in some countries may be prohibitively costly. In that case, I would suggest at least now and then feed raw meat opportunistically. I would suggest not to mix raw and processed food because chemicals in processed food may destroy the enzymes in raw food. In Czech we used to also feed fresh road kill of wild animals. In some countries or in some states in USA to pick a road kill is illegal so please confirm the local laws. In some other places, it is OK to pick a road kill after the officials are notified. These laws are good laws which stop people from killing wildlife with vehicles on purpose and then picking and eating it - which is a form of poaching.

by Prager on 13 August 2018 - 15:08

I would also like to say that feeding raw food in USA can be generally cheaper than feeding processed granulated food. For example I pay for raw chicken in Costco or in Walmart $0.45 - $0.79 per pound. Where 24 lb bag of Blue Buffalo Wildenrness in Pet smart costs over $50 which is $2.08 per pound.
Of course, if for your convenience you are buying boutique prepackaged and mixed and advertised and expensively marketed, raw food then that is very expansive. I have over 20 dogs and used to have well over 50 dogs in my breeding program and believe me I was very money conscious about the cost of the food thus I have studied these costs greatly and I have found out that if I buy meat in some sources then it is less expensive and I feed human grade food and not some crappy byproducts and who know what not fit for human consumption sold in shiny bag.
If you live in the country away from big box stores you can buy from a farmer fallen animals who are not sick but are merely injured. I know recently of people who created a pool and bought cow which lost an eye. Such cow cannot be sold for human consumption Thus these people got grass fed beef for their dogs. Such meat is very cheap and you get bones for chewing and bone broth and marrow with the meat. If you get a big 27 cubic feet freezer like I have, to store such food you will save a fortune in comparison to feeding chrome plated crap in a shiny bag. What I am saying is that there is a way to feed at least some raw.

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