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Old 05-30-2010, 05:09 AM
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Default How to choose food for your dog/cat.

I've done a whole lot of research into pet food, so I thought I'd share here.

Firstly, if you want more in depth info, please go to www.dogfoodscoop.com or www.dogfoodanalysis.com to find out what constitutes a GOOD food and what's generally BAD.

1. Look at the ingredients list at the back of the bag of food. Always, always check what's in your pet's food! Make sure that the first few ingredients are named meats.

- Good: chicken meal, lamb, lamb meal, chicken, etc. (Chicken, for example, is fresh meat with water weight included, "meal" is fresh meat that has been dehydrated, so there's no water in it)

- BAD: chicken by products (anything by products is lower grade and is what's "leftover" from processing the meat for human consumption), meat (RED FLAG. every time you see an unnamed meat, stay away!! Many companies use rendered meat from roadkill, shelter kills, and random animals that are too unhealthy for human consumption. Do you really want your dog or cat eating the meat of other dead dogs and cats?)

What I look for: I prefer to feed foods that have at least 2 meats as the first ingredient (the more a certain ingredient in a kibble, the higher it is placed on the list). Something like chicken meal, rice etc. is MUCH better than something which says "chicken, corn, rice". That's because if it says "chicken", it's the meat WITH water weight. Once the kibble is dehydrated into dry kibble, the meat will weigh much LESS. So the "chicken" will actually not be the first ingredient anymore. Chicken meal, on the other hand, is already dehydrated before cooking, so you know there is more chicken in there.

2. Cats and dogs are carnivores (well, cats more than dogs), they cannot digest grains like CORN. The reason why corn is in so many dog and cat foods is because corn is CHEAP. And the corn that they use in the food is what's called a "filler". It's in there to "fill up the food". It doesn't give your pet any energy. For example, a food that has more corn in it (like Iams, Pedigree etc.) you will have to feed MORE to keep your pet healthy. Good foods like Orijen, Acana, EVO, Innova, California Natural, etc. never, EVER have corn in it. Good brands of food use high-grade grains like rice, brown rice, oats, etc. Anything to do with corn is bad. Yellow corn, ground corn, corn gluten meal, etc.

3. Many dogs and cats are allergic to grains. (My dog is allergic to brown rice) If you see your pet losing fur, itching, and having ear infections, it's probably because it is allergic to something in the food. (OK, make sure that your pet doesn't have any fleas or anything first!) Most of the time, dogs and cats are allergic to grains like wheat, corn, etc. Sometimes even chicken, beef, and lamb. If your dog or cat has a grain allergy, please look into raw feeding or grain-free foods. Some very good grain-free brands are Orijen and EVO.

4. Other by-products and fillers: beet pulp is another form of filler. It's there in the food to make it heavier, but it's not nutritious for your pet. There are several other fillers that you can find in those two websites I mentioned. Brewers rice is another type of filler. By products are basically the parts of animals that are not used to feed humans. Like chicken feet, beaks, feathers, organs, etc. It's tonnes cheaper than chicken MEAT, which is why producers use it to make petfood.

5. Check the percentages of protein and fat in the food. Good foods will have a high % of protein. Cats need higher protein levels than dogs, so make sure you check the levels! Good foods will always have a protein % of 30% or more. Bad foods have very little protein. In bad foods, most of the calories comes from carbs. And, well, too much carbs and too little protein is bad for carnivores!

6. Check the amount of food the bag recommends. If you look at bad foods, you'll notice that they will recommend you feed MORE of the food for your pet. That's because the food is not nutritious, therefore your pet has to eat more of it to stay healthy.

- For example, my pup used to be on Eukanuba (bad, I know. That was before I did my research). He was eating 1 cup of food per day. He's now on EVO, and only eats 1/2 cup of food. See the difference? Good foods might look expensive, but it's actually CHEAPER in the long run because you feed LESS!

7. I know that lots of you have been led to believe that popular brands like Royal Canin, Science Diet, Iams, Eukanuba, etc. are "Premium". It's NOT true. These companies are large, multinational companies that are more interested in making money than anything else. P&G, which owns Iams and Eukanuba does disgusting animal testing. PETA found out that they were using dogs and cats as test animals. They would cut out their meat for "testing", while the animals were ALIVE! I no longer buy anything from P&G.

Do lots and lots of research. Don't believe ads on TV. Learn about what's good and what's bad. A lot of GOOD pet food companies don't make enough $$ to advertise their products like Iams and Pedigree.

For example, Orijen is made in Canada. ALL their ingredients are 100% Canadian and they make their food in their own facility. They guarantee that all their ingredients are human-grade. You can eat Orijen kibble and not fall sick!

Many bad companies import their ingredients from China because it's cheaper. That's what happened in 2007 when so many pets died from eating their own FOOD. China has very lax security when it comes to food manufacturing. Even babies died from eating melamine tainted milk. After the 2007 scandal, I now refuse to feed my pets anything that has ingredients coming from China.

Anyway, sorry this is so long. I care about animals and really want the BEST for them! Please feel free to ask questions if you have any.
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Old 06-07-2010, 04:31 PM
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Default Re: How to choose food for your dog/cat.

Thank you for posting this. This is very informative and true. I'm going to change my cats diet soon. They're currently on RC. They don't really like the taste of RC, so every time I feed them I have to mix it up with canned food, so the smell is stronger. I wonder why? [I've tried Blackwood, and science-plan, same thing]

I've read about Orijen, EVO, etc. I'm still trying to find EVO, but have no idea where to buy? I'm thinking of buying it online. I also want to try Avo Derm, they love the canned food.
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Old 06-09-2010, 02:56 AM
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Default Re: How to choose food for your dog/cat.

No problem! :) I just felt like I had to give people info on how to pick food... seems like most people are deceived by pet food companies claiming to make "premium food" which are so overpriced and contain nothing but sugar and corn (Science Diet especially).

Where are you located? You can actually go to the Naturapet website (www.naturapet.com), they have a list of retailers on their website. Most of the pet food companies have it, so you can just check from there and go to the petstore closest to you to get some! If you're anywhere in PJ/Mutiara Damansara area, there's a big store at Ikano that carries all the Natura products (EVO, Innova, California Natural, etc.)

I feed my dog a mixture of kibble and canned food. I mix about 1 tablespoon of canned food to his kibble for every meal. He loves EVO canned as well as Innova canned.
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Old 07-15-2010, 10:23 PM
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Default Re: How to choose food for your dog/cat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lucidity View Post

7. I know that lots of you have been led to believe that popular brands like Royal Canin, Science Diet, Iams, Eukanuba, etc. are "Premium". It's NOT true. These companies are large, multinational companies that are more interested in making money than anything else. P&G, which owns Iams and Eukanuba does disgusting animal testing. PETA found out that they were using dogs and cats as test animals. They would cut out their meat for "testing", while the animals were ALIVE! I no longer buy anything from P&G.
I jsut read just now at http://truthaboutpetfood.com/ that P&G bought Natura pet which is the manufacturer of Innova and other Holistic cat food .. http://truthaboutpetfood.com/article...-products.html They classified it as devastating news..

and PETA has set up IAMScruelty.com http://www.iamscruelty.com/

Feedback?
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Old 07-18-2010, 05:03 PM
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Default Re: How to choose food for your dog/cat.

Yup, I'm aware of that... which is why I've stopped feeding my dog anything made by Natura. For now, the company still sources the ingredients from the same places and none of the ingredient lists have changed yet... but who knows what P&G will do in the future?

They're the ultimate evil corporation. I don't buy ANYTHING made by P&G anymore. Not even shampoo.
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Old 06-09-2011, 08:45 PM
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Default Re: How to choose food for your dog/cat.

Hi,

Was goin thru the site to look for abetter dog food. My 2 adult dogs are taking eukunuba lamb & rice for more than 2 years now and my new puppy is on blackwood. I'm trying to switch for the 2 adult dogs as the price of eukunuba is going up higher and higher, its now RM190+ for the 15kg bag and it does not last very long for them. Its burning a big hole in my pocket soon.

Any idea of any good dog food around that you could recommend. It has to be good quality but at affordable price as I have got 3 dogs to feed. Sorry to say that the food they are taking is not doing much difference in them.

Please help to recommend. I think paying for a 15kg bag should be less than RM150 or even much lower, etc. RM120.
Anyone else can also give in your views on this one.
I really need to switch soon. Thanks
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Old 06-19-2011, 01:15 AM
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Default Re: How to choose food for your dog/cat.

Eukanuba is actually VERY VERY expensive for the quality of ingredients that they use to make it. Basically, they make you pay for the advertising that they do for their food. Blackwood CAT food is all right, but the dog food is rather horrible too.

Some very good brands that you can look at (and that are ALL cheaper than Eukanuba!! I'm appalled at the price of Eukanuba, Royal Canin, etc. in Malaysia. Total ripoff!!) are... California Natural, Avoderm, Innova, Evanger's and US Regal. You can find all of these foods in Pet's Lovers Centre or Petsmore.

Sometimes you'll be able to find these brands in specialty petstores too. Specialty stores are usually more expensive though. I'm not sure if these brands are cheaper than RM150 for 15kg (my dog is small and I only buy 2-3kg bags at a time), but they are DEFINITELY cheaper than what you're paying for Eukanuba. Also, you usually have to feed a lot LESS of these brands because there's so much more meat in the ingredients compared to Eukanuba/Pedigree/Royal Canin etc.

When in doubt, please look back on my advise on buying brands. Don't listen to advertising. Always check the ingredients list of the food you're buying and please, please make sure that the first ingredient should ALWAYS be a NAMED meat. Something like "chicken, rice, corn, etc" is BAD, but something like "chicken MEAL, rice, oats, etc" is GOOD.

This is a very good website for dog food ratings: www.dogfoodadvisor.com
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