What to feed

Discussion in 'Working and Companion Animals' started by dunroven, Oct 12, 2005.

  1. dunroven

    dunroven Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I had a mamma german shepherd that recently came off of feeding her pups. We gave her liver for a few days afterward to boost her iron and then put her back on full feed Purina Dog Chow (adult formula). However, she is just not gaining back the weight that she lost with the puppies. Any suggestions as to what to feed her to get her back to her old self?
     
  2. cricket

    cricket Well-Known Member

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    First, I'd use a better quality food if you can. Also, fresh eggs raw. There are also some very good vitamin supplements that you could use for a short time. It'll take a little while for her to bounce back though. You might want to have her checked by the vet too just to make sure she doesn't have anything more serious wrong. Keep us informed on how it goes.
     

  3. Willowynd

    Willowynd Well-Known Member

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    I agree with cricket. Purina dog chow is not a high quality food. If you can buy it at the grocery or Walmart, its not quality. When I fed kibble I gave bitches in whelp and nursing bitches a higher protein/fat diet. Mixing adult half and half with a high quality puppy food after weaning pups then gradually reducing the amount till she was fed all adult. The kibbles I liked are Chicken soup for the Dog lovers Soul, Nutro Lamb and rice or chicken oatmeal and rice, Sensible Choice chicken and rice, Canidae, Innova and Solid Gold. They are all high quality and though they cost more, you feed less of it for the same result. Usually anywhere from 1/3 to 1/2 less.
     
  4. dunroven

    dunroven Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Okay, sounds dumb, but that's okay, its the only way to learn. Where do you buy this "good quality food". I thought with 27% protein, Purina was 1 of the best and with the research that goes into their food I really thought it was better than the rest. We live in a very small town, and have to drive 21 to 30 miles to grocery shop, so that doesn't happen very often. Wal-Mart is about the only place we have to shop besides the Hy-Vee food stores and their dog food is like Old Roy and Hy-Vee generic brand. Then at the vet's office we can get Iams but the dogs won't eat that.

    Can't afford to have it shipped in, so I wouldn't know where to go to get anything else. Can I mix something that would be just as effective?
     
  5. mizattitude

    mizattitude Well-Known Member

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    I like the ingredients of natural balance..you can buy it online at jeffers pet or MAYBE your feed store. I was only able to find it at petsmart or online. Its pretty pricey..but you really cannot beat the quality. I feed it to my blue dobie
     
  6. GoldenMom

    GoldenMom Well-Known Member

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    You can't tell anything from the protein percentage-heck it may even be mostly undigestible protein (aka the dog can use it). In my part of the state any town big enough for a Wal-Mart will have a pet store/feed store with the better foods. Look in the phone book under pet supplies/food.

    Apparently Willow and I have the same defination of what is likely to be a poor quality food! That's the exact same line I tell my clients when they ask me what they should feed.
     
  7. dunroven

    dunroven Well-Known Member Supporter

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    No pet stores in this area. We have a vet supply and several feed stores, but none of the types of food everyone has mentioned. I can't order online, so, again, anyone know of anything I can mix up at home. Someone mentioned raw eggs, but what should I mix with it and how much per dog per day? We raise rabbits as well, so I could use some rabbit meat for them, soon, not yet, cause we are not getting any babies right now, but soon.
     
  8. Maura

    Maura Well-Known Member Supporter

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    A feed and seed should carry a variety of dog foods. Look at the ingredients. You don't want corn or poultry/meat by products. You want meat.

    If there is a butcher in your area, you may be able to get leftovers cheap. By leftovers I mean, chicken backs, that sort of thing. If you can buy cheap enough, it may not cost you much more to feed raw than to buy Purina.
     
  9. dunroven

    dunroven Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Well, tonight we went to Bomgaars to pick up a few things and we saw they have a LOT of dog food. I started checking things out and guys, the better dog foods are running about $25 for a 50 pound bag! :eek: That's WAY expensive! I couldn't afford to feed my dogs that. Don't mean to offend anyone, but that's just out of my league. My dog was doing great on Purina before the puppies, so I can't figure out why she isn't now. She had a beautiful coat, lots of energy, and was just beautiful. I'm going to try some raw eggs and liver and see if that doesn't help. Now, if someone could just give me some proportions. I give her a pound of liver at a time but how many eggs would be good? 2? 3?

    I am going to check with the butcher shop here tomorrow and find out if they have any chicken parts that I might get or other parts of whatevers to give her and if I can get them, I will and feed her on that. Again, folks, I really am not cheap, and I do take care of my dogs, but I just can't spend that kind of money on dog food. I have to believe there is a more economical way!

    Thanks!
     
  10. billygoatridge

    billygoatridge Well-Known Member

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    I work at a feed store that is a Purina dealer and I still will not recomend Purina Dog Chow because the first ingredient is grain. Purina Hi Pro is a little better for just a dollar or two more. Pro Plan is a good quality feed but is in the upper $20 range, although you don't have to feed near as much. I think the best food made under $20 is Diamond Premium or Original.
     
  11. deb

    deb Well-Known Member

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    She may have been doing okay on Purina before having puppies, but not after having then feeding a litter of pups! Since Purina wasn't giving her enough nutrients for her & the pups, so her pups got the nutrients. In fact her body probably robbed itself of nutrients to feed the puppies.

    yup. money is tight. However spending some extra money NOW to give her higher quality of food that is highly digestible is going to be cheaper in the long run than having to take her to the vet LATER because she got sick while/from being run down. You don't necessarily have to feed her higher quality food forever, but she certainly would benefit from it now.

    You can save money on the higher quality dog food by looking for coupons on manufacturer websites & in the newspaper. Also remember to ask the store staff if they have any damaged bags of dog food that are discounted. There's a store in town that sells their torn bags of higher quality dog food for 1/2 off the regular price which more than makes up for any loss from the tear.

    I've been feeding Sensible Choice to our dogs for over 10 years and have been very pleased with the results.

    deb
    in wi
     
  12. Cat

    Cat Well-Known Member

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    I'm able to get beef hearts and livers from the local butcher shop for $5 a week, as much as they get...if they don't have a whole lot then they give it to me for free. If nothing else if you can get something like this and supplement the Purina, that would be better than nothing.

    Back when I was going to school they advised feeding a bred dog - in the final stages (I don't remember this many years after exactly what week they advised), during nursing, and for a short while after the pups have been weaned - puppy food, as has been mentioned. Even that would be better than the Dog chow, if that's all you have access to. I get chicken leg quarters at the grocery for 43 cents a lb, any raw meat would be a great benefit, I would imagine. Although, I'm definitely not an expert.
     
  13. skruzich

    skruzich Well-Known Member

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    Diamond is a brand thats sold at most feedstores. This is one brand that hunters give their hunting dogs. Quality good food.
     
  14. Willowynd

    Willowynd Well-Known Member

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    How much are you paying for purina? $20 for a 40 lb bag? If you are paying at least $15 you will find it works out to the same cost- remember, you are not going to have to feed as much of the quality food as you do of purina. When I fed kibble, I once tried the walmart brand before they started adding corn gluten meal. My males were getting 6 cups a day and still I could not keep them at 65-70 lbs in the winter-I was lucky to get them to 60lbs on that amount. I had to switch as I feared if I gave them more it would stretch thier stomachs and possibly cause bloat. I switched to Sensible choice and was able to cut thier food down to 4 c a day to keep them at the right weight. I was able to cut them back to 3 c. a day when I simply added a 1/2 c of stewed chicken to thier meal. So I went from going through a bag of food every 4 days for 11 collies to going through a bag every 6 days. It was actually cheaper for me to feed the higher quality food. I live in the country and the feed stores here and the little pet shops all carry Nutro Natural. Some even have a deal that after you buy I think 5 bags, your 6th is free. Plus some even have points program that if you save the UPC's and mail them in, they will send you coupons for either free food of coupons for $4 off a large bag. So by the time your finished, you wind up paying about the same or less for the food itself and then feeding less of it- so your saving even more. Top that with healthier dog which means less vet visits and it pays for itself.
    If you want to switch to raw feeding, you will spend a little more than feeding kibble, but not that much more. If you have rabbits, you can cut the cost with rabbit meat- feed about 2-3% of body weight to start with. I buy chicken quarters from Walmart and feed those for most meals. My males (65-75#) get 2 quarters (when they are large- 3 when small ones), my girls (55-65#) get 1 (1 and half when small ones). They also get eggs from my chickens (free) once a week along with canned mackerel (.69 a can at walmart) and some organ meats like raw liver and kidneys- which walmart carries, but cheaper from butcher. When walmart has beef or pork marked down, usually once a week- they get about a 1/2 lb each. Puppies get beef and pork about 5 days a week. They also get a 8 in 1 multivitamin each day- 100 tabs at walmart like $4.
     
  15. americanbulldog

    americanbulldog American Hunter

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    Willow do you feed the pork raw or cooked? I feed beef, chicken, rabbit, and other meat raw but I have always felt a bit uneasy about pork. Am I just being silly? What do you do? :shrug:
     
  16. Ardie/WI

    Ardie/WI Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I would add one raw egg a day to the dogs food.

    Now, I'll tell you what I do for our dog who is older and needs extra nutition but not the extra calories. He has arthritis and extra fat isn't good for him.

    I save all bones from our meals in the freezer and, when I get a crockpot full of them, I cook them all night in water. I add any veggies scraps and even garlic. This mush gets strained and I cool the broth and skim off the fat. I freeze it in one or two cup containers. This broth is put on the dogfood I give him. The vet said it is full of nutrition and protein.(The outside cats get the mush.)

    Recently I found a good buy on chicken gizzards. (I love them!) I cooked them up and saved the broth for when I cook up the bag of leftover bones. There will be good nutriton in that broth.

    Use your imagination. Think protein for the dog. Even cheap meat has protein. Don't bother with cheap dog food...you might as well feed the dog sawdust or cardboard..
     
  17. longshadowfarms

    longshadowfarms Well-Known Member

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    I would also highly recommend the Diamond feed. You can get it at most feed stores. I'd go with the green bag for a dog that needs to gain some weight. We fed it to ours when she was pregnant and nursing. www.diamondpetfood.com for distributors
     
  18. dunroven

    dunroven Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Okay, I'll see what i can do with the local butcher here and talk to my husband about the higher cost food. However, we are members of the Purina Pro Club and get rebate checks from the for $7 off each bag, which makes a 50 pound bag of food cost $8. That's why we get that. We do feed the mammas puppy chow about 2 weeks before birth and until 2 to 3 weeks after birth, plus they get liver for several days after giving birth.

    We do have the diamond pet food. That's what was about $25 a bag. I can't imagine that we'll be able to cut our costs with that, but as I say, I'll talk to the butcher here and see.

    Thanks!
     
  19. cricket

    cricket Well-Known Member

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    Just get the one bag and then when you about halfway through it, start adding a little of the purina back in so you aren't changing drastically. Also, bacon fat, a tiny bit, on the food will help the skin and coat. The raw egg is wonderful for her. No matter what you are feeding, put one on it. I give my Dane one cracked in a bowl and she eats the whole thing, including the shell. I figure the calcium in the shell is giving a little boost since she's got another 2 yrs of growth to go through.

    I don't feed raw because it wouldn't be cost effective for me to do so. There is no way I'm going to feed grocery store chicken to ANYTHING. Do you know what they feed those things? EEEEWWWWW. And the butchers around here are so high, even on leftovers. However, I do feed PMI Premium and it costs around $17 per bag. I have had coupons that would help with that too. I like it better than Diamond but I do admit that Diamond is a better food. BTW, mine go through 50# per week....More if I'd let them. :stars:
     
  20. dunroven

    dunroven Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Wow! 50 pounds per week! You do have a dane though. They are quite a bit larger. Talked to hubby about the Diamond feed and convinced him that we might be able to cut down on the amount, which would make it cheaper and still help her to gain, after a few days to weeks. Talked to the butcher, and he says it is illegal for him to sell that stuff to anyone and he doesn't keep the liver of anything anymore cause no 1 wanted it. So, I guess that's that. I eat the chicken in the store. Prefer to have my own, but mine aren't big enough right now, soon will be though and I'll start butchering them. We do butcher rabbits and that's part of our food.

    Anyway, may be starting to get the Diamond feed soon and we will be doing the egg thing! I'll let you all know.

    Thanks!