New hunting dog— what’s your kibble of choice?

Dta1

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May 5, 2018
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Hey all!

Have a new English setter pup coming my way this week and looking for dog food recommendations. He’ll be training to (hopefully) be a top shelf bird dog.

I’ve searched the web and find that every site out there is an ad or has an agenda.

Hoping folks on this site that love their hunting buddy can share what they are feeding to keep Fido in tip top shape.

Any insight is appreciated.

Thanks in advance.
 

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sharpshot50

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I can very highly recommend Acana, Orijen, and Fromm foods. Whatever you get, make sure you get the appropriate life stage variant and add moisture to the kibble either by making dog-appropriate broth or gravy, or by simply adding water.

Wet kibble doesn’t last as long before it needs to be tossed, but it aids digestion immensely.

I’m sure many others can give you more useful information.
 
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Codiekfx400

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I had 2 labs that lived to be 14 and 15 years old. They ate nutrilife gold. It’s a cheaper version of Fromm made in the same plant. So I would recommend that or Fromm. Don’t over feed and don’t feed table scraps etc. Your dog should live a long happy life. Best of luck a bird dog will warm your heart and bring tears to your eyes long after they are gone.
 
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hlee

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Orijen smells like old dead fish and will stink up your entire house if you open a bag there. Also, Acana and Orijen have both been implicated in canine dilated cardiomyopathy associated with a grain free diet...


From what I have read, it is not "grain free" per se that causes the the condition, but a reaction to some of the ingredients used in grain free foods.

All of the vets we have ever used, and it has been a few across 3 states at this point, have recommended Purina ProPlan. That's what we feed.

Most dog food makers do not have a veterinary nutritionist on staff. Purina is one of only a handful (4?) that do.
 

Ugly Dog

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That's a fine looking racehorse of a pup you have there! I feed my wirehairs Purina Pro Plan 30/20. We put a lot of miles on chukar hunting and they seem to do really well on it.
 
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2010Ruger

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+1 for Purina pro plan. Been my labs diet for his entire 9 years and he’s been extremely healthy. My wife was a veterinarian who now works for the USDA and says the boutique brands with the claims of “wild caught” or “free range” ingredients are gimmicky B.S.
 
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hlee

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Hey all!

Have a new English setter pup coming my way this week and looking for dog food recommendations. He’ll be training to (hopefully) be a top shelf bird dog.

I’ve searched the web and find that every site out there is an ad or has an agenda.

Hoping folks on this site that love their hunting buddy can share what they are feeding to keep Fido in tip top shape.

Any insight is appreciated.

Thanks in advance.
May I suggest looking at what is printed on the vest of your breeder???
 
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Dta1

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May I suggest looking at what is printed on the vest of your breeder???
Good eyes! I did see that. Just wanted to get some other opinions— Pro plan is coming up consistently though.
 

Statusquo

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+1 for Pro Plan. My 9 year old lab is still retrieving like she's 4. Also, check out Chewy.com. Autimatically sends me 2 bags a month and its cheaper than going to town.
 
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sharpshot50

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Orijen smells like old dead fish and will stink up your entire house if you open a bag there. Also, Acana and Orijen have both been implicated in canine dilated cardiomyopathy associated with a grain free diet...


From what I have read, it is not "grain free" per se that causes the the condition, but a reaction to some of the ingredients used in grain free foods.

All of the vets we have ever used, and it has been a few across 3 states at this point, have recommended Purina ProPlan. That's what we feed.

Most dog food makers do not have a veterinary nutritionist on staff. Purina is one of only a handful (4?) that do.
Thanks for this information. My puppy is a german shepherd/husky mix and is specifically mentioned (GSD) in this article as being most susceptible to this stuff. Oddly enough, I was feeding her Purina Pro Plan when I was urged to swap away from Purina because "purina is crap and most of it is just fillers". She's pretty picky and while she will eat all of the aforementioned foods, her favorite is still the Purina pro plan chicken (https://www.purina.com/pro-plan/dogs/dry-dog-food/focus-puppy-large-breed-chicken-rice). I think I'll just go back to that.
 
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ditter

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Orijen without a doubt. It doesn't have a nasty odor, although the Six Fish flavor has a fishy smell. Just out it in an airtight container and you're set. It's not cheap, though. About 100 bucks for a 30lb bag.
Acana and Fromm are also good.
 
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hlee

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Good to know but it looks like all the top brands are listed. o_O
If by “top brands,” you mean grain free brands, then you are correct. Grain free dog food is a fad as much as gluten free human food.
 

Sieg

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Our 6 year old healthy and very active Great Dane came down with congestive heart failure and died 2.5 years ago..... He was on Costco's Nature's Domain Salmon & Sweet Potato, grain free. Since then our dogs (Lab and Dane) are now eating Costco's Kirkland Signature Adult Dog w/ Lamb, Brown Rice for grain, and Vegetable.

This was taken a couple days before he passed. :cry:
 
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Missalot

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My wife was a board registered dietitian. She feeds our dogs Purina Pro Plan as it is one of the only foods backed by scientific trials (see above post). We supplement their diet with kefir that I make and raw meats such as chicken, venison, rabbit, duck and pork. We tried all the boutique kibbles and are back to PPP after several recalls and Purina's study regarding dilated cardiomyopathy.

I sat in on a seminar hosted by Purina at the Orlando National Dog Convention a few years ago regarding live stage dog nutrition and was very impressed by the depth of their trials and studies. Purina is huge and is about the only company that can afford to do trials.
 
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Jlknights61

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Another endorsement for Purina Pro Plan, I have two German short haired pointers and have had great luck with PPP over the years, they especially like the lamb and rice flavor.
 
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myronman3

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my girl is a vet and says that purina has invested huge sums of money in ensuring their dogfood is as nutritionally perfect as it can be.

she says all these people doing the BARF and boutique diets are wrong and their dogs pay the price for it.
 
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Jefe's Dope

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Wasn't expecting this today but back to Purina One. Glad I clicked on this thread. Thanks.
 
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Ugly Dog

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+1 on chewy.com. I order 2 50lb bags of pro plan at a time and I don't have to lug that shit through the store. FedEx girl probably hates me. Boxes are stacked on the front porch. Shipping is free.
 
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Ds91

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My dog is on Fromm. Not grain free just the regular gold bag. It’s what she would eat and was better then the bag of crap they sent with her when I adopted her.
 
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Dta1

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Our 6 year old healthy and very active Great Dane came down with congestive heart failure and died 2.5 years ago..... He was on Costco's Nature's Domain Salmon & Sweet Potato, grain free. Since then our dogs (Lab and Dane) are now eating Costco's Kirkland Signature Adult Dog w/ Lamb, Brown Rice for grain, and Vegetable.

This was taken a couple days before he passed. :cry:
Sieg,

That’s a beautiful Dane— sorry for your loss.

I had a pair of Danes about 15 years ago and absolutely loved them. Such gentle giants.
 
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hlee

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I would be surprised if a "group of trainers" had the money for testing, trials, and analysis that the companies like Mars (Petigree, et al), Purina, P&G (Eukanuba, et al), Hills (Science Diet), etc do...
 

Supersubes

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We got our Brittany from a husband and wife team that trains about 60 dogs a year. A live-in 90-120 day program. They also guide through the upland game season all over the western US. They only use Purina Sport. We kept our dog on that and she’s doing great.

15762393-05CD-4A25-A751-8CCAB65ECACD.jpeg
 
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xdeano

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We run 4health chicken and rice on our working dogs. It has good ingredients, and they eat it without any issues. Coats are great and the dogs do well on it.

They also absorb a lot of it, unlike other cheap foods where they crap everywhere and frequently. The dogs leave fewer stools.

Look at the ingredients. Each company will have them labeled. You might have to interpret some of the lingo though.

Hope this helps,
Deano
 
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rockn30809

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Good thread. I have a 11 year old husky who developed a heart murmur about 3 years ago. I got her at just a year old and she always got what I thought was the best food, Taste of The Wild first then switched to Zignature 4 years ago. After hearing of the FDA study I switched her to regular, limited ingredient 4 Health brand food. I'll look at switching to Purina Pro Plan. Hate to think me trying to provide what I thought was best actually hurt her.
 
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NFAJohn

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+1 for pro plan....I mean the bag has a GSP on it and everything. In all seriousness we tried several before pro plan at the recommendation of our vet when Briley was having trouble keeping weight on during duck season. We ramp him up to 10 cups a day during duck season and 7 in the summer. 6ADBE88D-ACFB-409F-B99B-25FDFC2EB1FB.jpeg