6

votes

Studies about dog food and dog health?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 15, 2012 at 9:06 PM

Have there been decent studies about what commercial dog food products produces the healthiest dogs? Or pet food for other pets?

Does anyone know of generic commercial dog food that wold appear healthy (according to 'paleo' standards)?

Would it be a good and economical idea to feed a dog maybe dog chow + some cheap offal + cheap beef fat? In other words, what's the most economical way to keep a dog healthy?

Medium avatar

(4878)

on February 04, 2013
at 06:15 PM

Dan, Grass is actually for probiotics. Next to nothing is digested as most dog owners will attest to pulling "stringers" out of their dog's butt after they've gone grazing. I did feed sweet potatoes, but for poo consistency rather than nutritional reasons. Like pumpkin, Sweet Potatoes firm up runny poo. So, on the "fast day" when I fed back-to-back Green Tripe meals, I'd add 1/2c Sweet Potatoes.

194d8e8140425057fe06202e1e5822a7

(3979)

on February 04, 2013
at 01:54 PM

...This is was directed at all the other suggestions with sweet potato and tapioca starch.

194d8e8140425057fe06202e1e5822a7

(3979)

on February 04, 2013
at 01:53 PM

In other words, what a dog's paleo diet consists of should reference what THEIR ancestors ate, not ours. Their ancestors didn't eat much more than meat. Perhaps some grass for a little fiber.

Medium avatar

(4878)

on February 04, 2013
at 01:29 PM

Prey Model IS Low Carb. I fed my dog low carb for the majority of his 8 years with us. (He died in June and we were shocked to discover he was ~15 years old. Very old for a Boxer mix!!) I am convinced that the low carb model kept him alive much longer than "normal" kibble as he was in terrible shape when we adopted him. We'd estimated his age at 12 years, but his vet scratched through that date and subtracted 3 years, meaning she thought he was 6 years YOUNGER than is actual age. His vet is now feeding her dogs a Prey Model diet... Sometimes seeing is believing.

194d8e8140425057fe06202e1e5822a7

(3979)

on February 04, 2013
at 01:14 PM

Looking at the answers below I see nothing mentioning low-carb dog diets. Anyone have any insight into that?

194d8e8140425057fe06202e1e5822a7

(3979)

on February 04, 2013
at 01:13 PM

g t f o

Da8e709acde269e8b8bfbc09d1737841

(1906)

on February 23, 2012
at 01:01 AM

I understand the convenience behind it, and that it's considerably better than "generic" kibble, but there are better raw options out there commercially. If the goal is to find something paleo, kibble is not it. I guess the OP is confusing because it asks for "generic commercial dog food" that's paleo, but that simply doens't exist (I consider neither TotW/Orijen nor the raw options out there "generic").

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32564)

on February 20, 2012
at 12:29 AM

The OP was asking about commercial dog food. I answered his question. I don't see it as a "cheat", but as a practical solution for a house with a tiny freezer. You don't need to agree, of course!

Da8e709acde269e8b8bfbc09d1737841

(1906)

on February 19, 2012
at 09:48 PM

Good link to get started reviewing various options, but I wouldn't consider Taste of the Wild or Orijen a "paleo" dog option. I've used Orijen in the past for car trips and such just because it's comparatively _easy_, but it's still a cheat.

Medium avatar

(4878)

on February 16, 2012
at 03:58 PM

You also need to factor in long term health care in your expense calculations. So add ~$80 for dental cleanings for more accurate accounting. If you don't do the teeth cleaning, and are feeding carbs, you'll likely have severe gum and teeth issues down the road. My ~5y/o dog was a rescue and needed a $1,500 root canal due to poor dental health and a baseline fracture. (It was a canine tooth, so couldn't be extracted as it is needed to maintain the bridge for gripping breeds.) My dog's dentist (Board Cert. Vet Dentist) says more dogs break their teeth on toys than bones, so feeding RMBs helps.

0607529af9b78bb5b178f7ffabdc4693

(701)

on February 16, 2012
at 06:19 AM

That is a lot of dog... food

0607529af9b78bb5b178f7ffabdc4693

(701)

on February 16, 2012
at 06:16 AM

Same here on Taste of the Wild. The heelador loves it, but not as much as he loved the raw.

A65499f2f8c65602881550fe309cd48c

(3501)

on February 16, 2012
at 12:04 AM

Thanks for tat website reviewing dog foods...awesome resource!

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7 Answers

4
3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on February 15, 2012
at 11:07 PM

I favor raw food for my dog; it's cheap ($1/lb) and he's incredibly healthy on it. It makes sense from a Paleo perspective to feed your pets an evolutionarily appropriate diet. That said, there are few to no studies of raw food diets for pets, except this one. It's an industry-funded study, so take it for what it's worth; maybe others will have more links:

http://www.petproductnews.com/headlines/2010/03/26/raw-diet-a-viable-option-for-dogs-study-says.aspx

ETA: They produce a line of raw, commercial dog food: http://www.naturesvariety.com/ It's not what I feed my dog -- I just give him raw ground meat, including bones, from a local butcher.

2
Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32564)

on February 15, 2012
at 10:32 PM

We feed our dog Taste of the Wild. It's grain-free and though not Paleo, is great for our pooch. Just under $2 a pound.

He tore his shoulder at the dog park & it fully healed in a week.

Orijen is excellent, but more expensive.

Check out this site for reviews of commercial dog food.

A65499f2f8c65602881550fe309cd48c

(3501)

on February 16, 2012
at 12:04 AM

Thanks for tat website reviewing dog foods...awesome resource!

0607529af9b78bb5b178f7ffabdc4693

(701)

on February 16, 2012
at 06:16 AM

Same here on Taste of the Wild. The heelador loves it, but not as much as he loved the raw.

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32564)

on February 20, 2012
at 12:29 AM

The OP was asking about commercial dog food. I answered his question. I don't see it as a "cheat", but as a practical solution for a house with a tiny freezer. You don't need to agree, of course!

Da8e709acde269e8b8bfbc09d1737841

(1906)

on February 19, 2012
at 09:48 PM

Good link to get started reviewing various options, but I wouldn't consider Taste of the Wild or Orijen a "paleo" dog option. I've used Orijen in the past for car trips and such just because it's comparatively _easy_, but it's still a cheat.

Da8e709acde269e8b8bfbc09d1737841

(1906)

on February 23, 2012
at 01:01 AM

I understand the convenience behind it, and that it's considerably better than "generic" kibble, but there are better raw options out there commercially. If the goal is to find something paleo, kibble is not it. I guess the OP is confusing because it asks for "generic commercial dog food" that's paleo, but that simply doens't exist (I consider neither TotW/Orijen nor the raw options out there "generic").

1
Medium avatar

(4878)

on February 16, 2012
at 02:37 PM

If you do want to feed a "Paleo" style, I'd recommend Prey Model Raw, which is very easy to keep under $1/lb once you get your butcher connections. Here's a survey from a raw feeding group: Raw Fit Pet Survey. Yes it needs a little help, but it dispels many of the myths circulated by Vets and pet food companies.

As a raw feeder for the last 8 years, I will never feed my dog kibble. There are too many 'unknowns' in the food sourcing for pets and I'd rather spend a little more and know exactly what my beastie is eating. His vet has finally come around to agreeing that raw "may be OK", but that's only because all the other dogs in his cohort are now dying and he looks the same.

1
Af3e3615beba642bcafd0f21d64d74f7

on February 16, 2012
at 05:10 AM

I have 7 large breeds, and prior to going grain free with them, EVERYTHING was horrible. Switched to EVO Red Meat formula, and drastic improvements on all fronts. Also use Blue Wilderness

My 10 year old lab's tumors all shrank, and eventually went away, however it was a little too late for her immune system to fully recover.

Currently we go grain free no matter what with Earthborn

There are tremendous differences in their skin, coat, bowel movements, urine frequency, teeth, etc. They also get BARFed as often as possible with meat/organs from local grass finished farm.

Edit: They eat alot lss also, a 50lb bag of grain dog food was $23.00, and 28lb bag of Earthborn is $49, but they went through 3 bags a week on grain feed, and only 2 bags every 7 days.

0607529af9b78bb5b178f7ffabdc4693

(701)

on February 16, 2012
at 06:19 AM

That is a lot of dog... food

1
Da8e709acde269e8b8bfbc09d1737841

(1906)

on February 15, 2012
at 11:58 PM

There have been similar questions about this in the past, so you might want to browse the site a bit more for additional answers.

That said, there is a fairly large community of pet owners who embrace Biologically Appropriate Raw Food (BARF) which parallels paleo pretty closely. There are several raw food brands if you don't want to make your own. I used Primal for several years, though have recently been using Stella and Chewy's (which I find to be a more consistent product) and is more widely available where I now live.

There are several kibble brands that are grain-free, and though much better than "normal" kibble, they're still far from ideal (they're heavily processed) and lack the hydration pets should be getting. That said, they're good stand-bys for when you travel and can't bring raw meat on a trip, though there are better brands for this purpose (like those offering freeze-dried raw mixes that can be rehydrated accordingly).

I'm not aware of any scientific studies done comparing various diets, though there's plenty of anecdotal information out there. I've spoken to a handful of vets who have seen pets on both raw and non-raw food, and every one agrees that the pets fed a raw diet are generally healthier than their non-raw-fed counterparts.

0
7c9f81d68c78de1a31eab9c91c17b4b8

on February 16, 2012
at 02:40 PM

I don't feed my diabetic doggie raw or prey but I do put bacon grease, coconut oil and rub cheese on his rawhide for snacks. He's on prescription food but he has a beautiful coat!

-2
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on February 04, 2013
at 12:32 PM

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194d8e8140425057fe06202e1e5822a7

(3979)

on February 04, 2013
at 01:13 PM

g t f o

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