Author Topic: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations  (Read 8118 times)

jamesbond007

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Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« on: February 15, 2017, 04:41:25 PM »
So we are finally getting a puppy in May. Any Mustachian approved dog food recommendations to keep costs low?

The Drawing Bird

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2017, 05:07:25 PM »
When we first got a puppy, we went super non-mustachian and bought the kinds of dog food that had meat as the first ingredient.  After a couple of years, we tried out a more generic brand, and found that she looked/acted just as healthy.  Currently, we buy the generic Purina "Complete" (~$16 for a 42lb bag). 

I think this answer is pretty common for dog owners (ie. not "mustachian" per se), but it's already so affordable that it doesn't seem worth our time to try and find a cheaper option that doesn't greatly sacrifice nutrition.

Hope this helps, and have fun with your new puppy!

Lski'stash

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2017, 05:20:03 PM »
There could be a few answers for this, depending on how mustachian you want to be and what that means to you.

There are a few other discussions on this, but generally, I've found that people make their food, buy a good brand, or do the best they can with what Costco offers.

I use chewy.com to buy my dogs food, brand Taste of the Wild. It's one of the only foods I've found that doesn't give my dog the runs.

dogfoodadvisor.com is a good place to do your research on dog foods, as well. Then go to chewy.com to buy. I've found that they generally have the best prices.

Bracken_Joy

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #3 on: February 15, 2017, 05:24:30 PM »
There could be a few answers for this, depending on how mustachian you want to be and what that means to you.

There are a few other discussions on this, but generally, I've found that people make their food, buy a good brand, or do the best they can with what Costco offers.

I use chewy.com to buy my dogs food, brand Taste of the Wild. It's one of the only foods I've found that doesn't give my dog the runs.

dogfoodadvisor.com is a good place to do your research on dog foods, as well. Then go to chewy.com to buy. I've found that they generally have the best prices.

I was happy to find that the food we give our dog (wellness stew) they rated as 5 stars. We go through amazon subscribe and save (15% off), with a 5% back rewards card, to reduce the cost.

GuitarStv

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2017, 05:27:13 PM »
We've had no problems at all with the Kirkland brand stuff that you can get at Costco, and it's generally reviewed pretty well by ingredients.

jamesbond007

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2017, 05:29:38 PM »
Great. I will look into those. My breeder is adamant to use a particular brand of dog food for her dogs. I guess it doesn't matter but wanted to check. This is our first pet so I didn't want to take any chances.

swick

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #6 on: February 15, 2017, 05:44:16 PM »
Great. I will look into those. My breeder is adamant to use a particular brand of dog food for her dogs. I guess it doesn't matter but wanted to check. This is our first pet so I didn't want to take any chances.

Becuase you mentioned it (although you probably don't want the unsolicited advice)

If you are worried about the cost of dog food, you should be also questioning the costs of getting a dog from a breeder. Besides the initial cost compared to say, adopting a dog, the medical issues that can come up can be staggering. Every single person I know who has gone the breeder/pure bread route has had major issues and vet bills. Shortened life spans, expensive surgeries, blindness, hip issues, chronic health issues....

DragonSlayer

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #7 on: February 15, 2017, 06:03:28 PM »
Generally speaking, higher quality food means you will spend less in vet bills. Healthier food=healthier dog, just like healthy food in humans makes us healthier. Also, better brands usually mean you feed less, so it averages the cost out with cheap brands. We feed Nature's logic for this dog, as that's what her foster mom was feeding her, but we fed Innova with the last dog. Great results with both.

RichMoose

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #8 on: February 15, 2017, 06:06:27 PM »
For Canadians I highly recommend the Actr1um Duck & Sweet Potato kibble. High protein content, no wheat or soy, it's cheap, and my dog loves it. My dog is extremely sensitive to lots of other food and treats, but he does really well on this one. No itching, vomiting, stool issues, or anything like that.

It's sold at Walmart and comes in big bags!

waltworks

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #9 on: February 15, 2017, 07:29:25 PM »
Leftovers is what dogs evolved on. If you don't have some crazy high-strung inbred dog, most of them do just fine on straight (wait for it...) garbage. I mean, by all means get them some dog food and feed them regularly, but don't worry if it's rat parts and corn dust pellets or whatever. Dogs love that stuff. If your dog doesn't, try another cheap food.

The problem, really, for most dogs these day is *too much* food. Try to avoid that.

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Tami1982

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #10 on: February 15, 2017, 07:41:38 PM »
I'm a little weird in that I make my dog's food.  But, it's costs me nothing to do.  I go on my local buy nothing website and ask for freezer burnt meat/veggies.  I cook one day a month for about four hours with a pressure cooker and I'm set for my lab and shih tzu.

After a few asks people now offer it to me no questions.  I have a freezer just for their food and I haven't had to buy any (other than for travel or vacation) in nearly two years. 

I tried all the different diets to try and alleviate my lab's seizures and my shih tzu's UTI's and this did it.  Zero meds, healthy pups. 

jamesbond007

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #11 on: February 16, 2017, 08:02:09 AM »
Great. I will look into those. My breeder is adamant to use a particular brand of dog food for her dogs. I guess it doesn't matter but wanted to check. This is our first pet so I didn't want to take any chances.

Becuase you mentioned it (although you probably don't want the unsolicited advice)

If you are worried about the cost of dog food, you should be also questioning the costs of getting a dog from a breeder. Besides the initial cost compared to say, adopting a dog, the medical issues that can come up can be staggering. Every single person I know who has gone the breeder/pure bread route has had major issues and vet bills. Shortened life spans, expensive surgeries, blindness, hip issues, chronic health issues....

Thanks for your input. I am not at all worried about costs here. There are some costs that I would like to avoid if possible, like expensive dog food, but there are some costs that you cannot avoid. In my case, getting a Lab from a reputable breeder. Cost me $2000 but it is my daughter's companion especially when we decided to have only one child. I don't think I can put a $ amount on my daughter's happiness. Also, there is research that shows having a dog (or even a cat) is good for stress management which means more good health.

prognastat

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #12 on: February 16, 2017, 08:28:30 AM »
Great. I will look into those. My breeder is adamant to use a particular brand of dog food for her dogs. I guess it doesn't matter but wanted to check. This is our first pet so I didn't want to take any chances.

Becuase you mentioned it (although you probably don't want the unsolicited advice)

If you are worried about the cost of dog food, you should be also questioning the costs of getting a dog from a breeder. Besides the initial cost compared to say, adopting a dog, the medical issues that can come up can be staggering. Every single person I know who has gone the breeder/pure bread route has had major issues and vet bills. Shortened life spans, expensive surgeries, blindness, hip issues, chronic health issues....

Thanks for your input. I am not at all worried about costs here. There are some costs that I would like to avoid if possible, like expensive dog food, but there are some costs that you cannot avoid. In my case, getting a Lab from a reputable breeder. Cost me $2000 but it is my daughter's companion especially when we decided to have only one child. I don't think I can put a $ amount on my daughter's happiness. Also, there is research that shows having a dog (or even a cat) is good for stress management which means more good health.

I got a mutt that looks and behaves just like a golden retriever and it cost us $20... and was already neutered and had his first round of shots.

Pure breeds are likelier to develop costly complications later in life and cost far more up front and even more in the long run.

As to food you don't have to go ridiculously expensive and get any of the extreme "healthy" foods, but I would recommend looking at the ingredients and nutritional balance of the foods rather than picking up something as cheap as possible. Also make sure you dog gets plenty of exercise, this will be good for both you and your dog.

waltworks

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #13 on: February 16, 2017, 08:38:39 AM »
Ok, I have to interject - $2000 (probably inherently unhealthy) dog? No price on happiness for your child?

Is this the MMM forum?

-W


swick

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #14 on: February 16, 2017, 08:44:23 AM »
Also, there is research that shows having a dog (or even a cat) is good for stress management which means more good health.

Definitely won't argue there, I've got two and have always had dogs (and been pretty miserable when I haven't)

But that doesn't mean you need a pure bread. Also, although labs are usually friendly, I'll give you another perspective on labs. Puppies (esp Labs) tend to nip, they also have tails that HURT when they thwap against your legs. Especially if you are a kid. Now I don't know how old your daughter is, but when I was 6 or so my mom's friend got a lab puppy. Between the nipping and the bruises I would get from her tail I grew to be pretty scared of her. My teacher actually asked if I was being hit at home since I had these great monster welts across my legs.

If you are dead set on a Lab, my experience with purebreds vs mutt Labs ( I have friends who have both) is the pure breeds have just not lived as long and aged much faster, also a consideration if this dog is to be your daughter's best friend.

If the sole purpose is a companion for your daughter, why not take her to a couple of shelters and see if there are any dogs that click with her?



« Last Edit: February 16, 2017, 08:55:33 AM by swick »

Daley

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #15 on: February 16, 2017, 08:46:36 AM »
I don't think I can put a $ amount on my daughter's happiness.

Any Mustachian approved dog food recommendations to keep costs low?

*sings* One of these things is not like the other, one of these things just isn't the same...

I'm going to be blunt here and also get Swick's back. Your priorities appear to be inverted and short sighted. You'll spend two grand on an inbred pup with a family tree that more resembles a phone pole than an oak tree (but the breeder is reputable!), but you want to get the cheapest food you can get away with?

Get a young mutt from the pound that your kid can meet and gets along with, train it properly, and feed it well. Your daughter will thank you.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2017, 08:48:10 AM by I.P. Daley »

prognastat

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #16 on: February 16, 2017, 08:56:20 AM »
Great. I will look into those. My breeder is adamant to use a particular brand of dog food for her dogs. I guess it doesn't matter but wanted to check. This is our first pet so I didn't want to take any chances.

Becuase you mentioned it (although you probably don't want the unsolicited advice)

If you are worried about the cost of dog food, you should be also questioning the costs of getting a dog from a breeder. Besides the initial cost compared to say, adopting a dog, the medical issues that can come up can be staggering. Every single person I know who has gone the breeder/pure bread route has had major issues and vet bills. Shortened life spans, expensive surgeries, blindness, hip issues, chronic health issues....

Thanks for your input. I am not at all worried about costs here. There are some costs that I would like to avoid if possible, like expensive dog food, but there are some costs that you cannot avoid. In my case, getting a Lab from a reputable breeder. Cost me $2000 but it is my daughter's companion especially when we decided to have only one child. I don't think I can put a $ amount on my daughter's happiness. Also, there is research that shows having a dog (or even a cat) is good for stress management which means more good health.

I got a mutt that looks and behaves just like a golden retriever and it cost us $20... and was already neutered and had his first round of shots.

Pure breeds are likelier to develop costly complications later in life and cost far more up front and even more in the long run.

As to food you don't have to go ridiculously expensive and get any of the extreme "healthy" foods, but I would recommend looking at the ingredients and nutritional balance of the foods rather than picking up something as cheap as possible. Also make sure you dog gets plenty of exercise, this will be good for both you and your dog.

To add to this both of our mutts are sweet as can be to other people and love kids. More important than getting an expensive dog is making sure to train and socialize them well. I would rather spend 1k+ training and socializing my dogs early on than spend more for a dog that has literally no upside over a mutt beyond a useless stamp of a approval. Your daughter isn't going to love it more or less because it is a pure breed. She will love it because they click and because they will spend plenty of time together.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2017, 09:38:54 AM by prognastat »

AZDude

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #17 on: February 16, 2017, 09:29:02 AM »
We agonized over what kind of food to give our dog after rescuing him from the local animal control center, but after staring at a million kinds of food and wondering what the difference was, we realized it probably did not matter since the dog often goes out back and eats bird shit, wood mulch, trash that blows over from the construction next door, sprinkler hose, bottles of "no-chew" spray, etc...

We still try to give him quality food in the vain hope that if it tastes good and makes him feel good that he will eat less other stuff, but after four months I don't think it matters. He could probably eat bargain brand food chocked full of filler and by-products and still be healthy.

jamesbond007

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #18 on: February 16, 2017, 09:44:14 AM »
People, you are jumping to conclusions about my choice and judging me based one my choices. What made you think that I did not try at a shelter first? We spent almost 6 months to find a lab or a golden at a shelter. Couldn't find any. We wanted a kid friendly dog. The only dogs I could find were Huskies, German Shepherds, etc. We didn't mind getting those too but none of the shelters would let us adopt for reasons only they know. How is that my problem? Everything else was a pit bull or a chihuahua. I didn't want either. Wow, I did not know I had to take so much flak for asking a suggestion. May I did not read a memo that people are being judged here? Giving a suggestion is one thing and jumping to conclusions based one some assumptions is unacceptable.

swick

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #19 on: February 16, 2017, 09:57:48 AM »
This is our first pet so I didn't want to take any chances.

I don't think people are judging you for your choices, just sharing experience and perspective from people who have been there and giving you other things to consider that you might not have with this being your first pet.

GuitarStv

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #20 on: February 16, 2017, 10:33:19 AM »
To share a slightly different experience and perspective regarding pure-bred dogs:

We've always had a dog in our family since I was a kid.  My parents always purchased dogs from reputable breeders.  We've never had a problem with our dogs.  A pure-bred dog from a good breeder is expensive for a reason.  A good breeder researches the medical history of the bitch and the stud, including the medical history of all the dams and sires several generations back on both sides to radically reduce the chance of problems caused by inbreeding.  A good breeder will offer a guarantee to take the dog back if any hereditary medical condition turns up in your puppy.  A good breeder will keep in touch with you for the life of your dog because they want to know about any medical problems that turn up.  When you get a purebred dog from a good breeder, you are virtually assured that the weight, height, and temperament will be in line with breed standards.

Not every person who calls him or herself a breeder really is.  Some of them don't know what the hell they're doing and give dog breeders a bad name.  There are puppy mill operators who masquerade as breeders, so you have to be careful.  It's possible to sell purebreds for a lot of money, so it's as important to research the person you're buying from as it is the traits of the breed you're interested in.  A good breeder will be as interested in getting to know you as you will be in getting to know them.

All that said, the dog we currently have is a beagle / beagle mix that we picked up from the pound.  She is a lovely dog, but has had more genetic medical issues (problems with teeth, immune disorder, and problem with eyes) than the previous five dogs we've had from breeders.

AZDude

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #21 on: February 16, 2017, 10:43:52 AM »
Generally speaking, mixed breed dogs actually have fewer genetic disorders than purebreds.

pattwi

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #22 on: February 16, 2017, 10:55:17 AM »
When we first got a puppy, we went super non-mustachian and bought the kinds of dog food that had meat as the first ingredient.  After a couple of years, we tried out a more generic brand, and found that she looked/acted just as healthy.  Currently, we buy the generic Purina "Complete" (~$16 for a 42lb bag). 

I think this answer is pretty common for dog owners (ie. not "mustachian" per se), but it's already so affordable that it doesn't seem worth our time to try and find a cheaper option that doesn't greatly sacrifice nutrition.

Hope this helps, and have fun with your new puppy!
Where do you buy the 42lb Purina complete for $16?? Not finding that price on amazon

jamesbond007

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #23 on: February 16, 2017, 11:45:01 AM »
To share a slightly different experience and perspective regarding pure-bred dogs:

We've always had a dog in our family since I was a kid.  My parents always purchased dogs from reputable breeders.  We've never had a problem with our dogs.  A pure-bred dog from a good breeder is expensive for a reason.  A good breeder researches the medical history of the bitch and the stud, including the medical history of all the dams and sires several generations back on both sides to radically reduce the chance of problems caused by inbreeding.  A good breeder will offer a guarantee to take the dog back if any hereditary medical condition turns up in your puppy.  A good breeder will keep in touch with you for the life of your dog because they want to know about any medical problems that turn up.  When you get a purebred dog from a good breeder, you are virtually assured that the weight, height, and temperament will be in line with breed standards.

Not every person who calls him or herself a breeder really is.  Some of them don't know what the hell they're doing and give dog breeders a bad name.  There are puppy mill operators who masquerade as breeders, so you have to be careful.  It's possible to sell purebreds for a lot of money, so it's as important to research the person you're buying from as it is the traits of the breed you're interested in.  A good breeder will be as interested in getting to know you as you will be in getting to know them.

All that said, the dog we currently have is a beagle / beagle mix that we picked up from the pound.  She is a lovely dog, but has had more genetic medical issues (problems with teeth, immune disorder, and problem with eyes) than the previous five dogs we've had from breeders.

Thank you. I agree. The breeder that I am working with interviewed the heck out of us before we even saw the dam and the sire. She gave us the family history going back 10 generations everything with registrations etc. She offered to take the puppy back if we find anything improper with health issues. She's being breeding labs for about 40 years now. That's what gave us confidence in the breeder. As is, it is very difficult to get a dog that you want from a pound where I live. This was our only option.

LittleWanderer

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #24 on: February 16, 2017, 11:54:13 AM »
Another vote for Taste of the Wild.   (For my mutt from the humane society, to add to the other part of this conversation.  She's 12 years old now, still walks with me for at least an hour every night.)

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #25 on: February 16, 2017, 12:06:03 PM »
We buy our food from a local place that sells the equivalent of the make it yourself food.  It ends up being cheaper per day than high end food we would get otherwise(one cat has special diet needs, i dont want to deal with different food for everybody)  I spend 100$ a month to feed two cats and a dog.  The dog gets all the veggie scraps or frozen veggies he wants in addition.

Place we go is http://www.woodyspetdeli.com you could look and see if there is anything similar near you.

waltworks

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #26 on: February 16, 2017, 01:08:22 PM »
Where on earth do you live that shelters won't let you adopt a pet? Everywhere I've lived (all over the west/rockies) you can basically walk into a shelter and have any dog you want for $50. If you said you wanted 50 dogs and were going to experiment on them or something, then you might run into problems.

If you're really getting rejected by shelters, I would imagine you'd also get rejected by reputable breeders.

-W

GoBigRed

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #27 on: February 16, 2017, 01:38:43 PM »
Costco's Nature's Domain has been great for us.  We typically get the salmon flavor.  Grain free and quality ingredients.  Has been great for our dog's coat.  About $20 to $30 cheaper than Canidae, which we were previously using.

Cookie78

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #28 on: February 16, 2017, 01:53:48 PM »
Where on earth do you live that shelters won't let you adopt a pet? Everywhere I've lived (all over the west/rockies) you can basically walk into a shelter and have any dog you want for $50. If you said you wanted 50 dogs and were going to experiment on them or something, then you might run into problems.

If you're really getting rejected by shelters, I would imagine you'd also get rejected by reputable breeders.

-W

The shelter I foster with does a lot of background checks, interviews, and meet and greets with the dogs with the family looking to adopt so that they can make sure to find the right dog to match the family, and make sure the family knows the responsibility they are signing up for. This process does a great job to help limit repeat rescues.

Personally I've only rejected one family who came to meet my foster (I also recommended that they not be allowed to adopt ANY other dogs), but I know other fosters who are extremely picky. Also, it's $350, not $50, to cover the initial medical costs, spay/neuter etc. so maybe everything is different everywhere you've lived.

That said, if the shelters are rejecting your applications, there is a reason. I'm curious what it is.

jamesbond007

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #29 on: February 16, 2017, 03:21:27 PM »
To give more context, all I found at my local shelters were, like I mentioned, German Shepherd, Huskies, Pit bulls, chihuahuas. We didn't want a chihuahua. for the first 3 breeds, they wouldn't let us adopt because our daughter is 2.5 yrs old. I have a lot of friends with infants and have German shepherds and huskies and not a problem. They told us "they don't recommend". They told us you have to spend a lot of time with the dog. Sure. My wife is a stay at home mom. She has all the time taking care of the dog and the kid. They say you need a big area for the dog to roam around. I literally live next to a football field and a soccer field(steps away) of a high school that we can use in the evenings and weekends. Not sure what's wrong with the shelters. Now I'd appreciate if you can all make me stop feeling guilty for not saving a dog's life from a shelter.

Another factor is that, we were scared to get a dog from the shelter as we did not know it's history, how it was treated by the past owner etc. Last thing we want is an aggressive dog. Sure we could train. But that's the risk we didn't want to take for a first pet. Was it an emotional decision? Sure. Will burn a deep hole in my pocket? NOPE.

ohsnap

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #30 on: February 16, 2017, 03:24:14 PM »
...

That said, if the shelters are rejecting your applications, there is a reason. I'm curious what it is.

Not sure why the OP was rejected, but I have seen shelter applications that REQUIRE things like Must have a fenced yard or At least one adult in the household has to be work-at-home or stay-at-home

FernFree

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #31 on: February 16, 2017, 03:34:13 PM »
I was buying our dog food at Costco, and my dogs just stopped eating it unless I covered it with gravy or some other "treat".  They hated it.  My daughter said she was using Rachel Ray Nutrish from the grocery so I checked it on that dog food site and it has pretty good ratings.  I switched and my dogs love it.  I'd call it a mid-level quality, so not too expensive but not the grain crap either.

It does seem though like everyone is going INSANE lately about quality dog food.  Our previous dog was fed the cheap Purina dog chow and she lived to be almost 20 and never had a single health issue until the end.  I think it's sucka hype and you shouldn't worry so much unless your dog has allergies or other problems that you need to solve.

jamesbond007

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #32 on: February 16, 2017, 03:37:36 PM »

Not sure why the OP was rejected, but I have seen shelter applications that REQUIRE things like Must have a fenced yard or At least one adult in the household has to be work-at-home or stay-at-home

We don't have a fenced yard. They did tell me that. But we have access to huge open land. No one was ready to fact check.

jamesbond007

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #33 on: February 16, 2017, 03:38:38 PM »
I was buying our dog food at Costco, and my dogs just stopped eating it unless I covered it with gravy or some other "treat".  They hated it.  My daughter said she was using Rachel Ray Nutrish from the grocery so I checked it on that dog food site and it has pretty good ratings.  I switched and my dogs love it.  I'd call it a mid-level quality, so not too expensive but not the grain crap either.

It does seem though like everyone is going INSANE lately about quality dog food.  Our previous dog was fed the cheap Purina dog chow and she lived to be almost 20 and never had a single health issue until the end.  I think it's sucka hype and you shouldn't worry so much unless your dog has allergies or other problems that you need to solve.

Thank you.

GizmoTX

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #34 on: February 16, 2017, 03:49:11 PM »
To share a slightly different experience and perspective regarding pure-bred dogs:

We've always had a dog in our family since I was a kid.  My parents always purchased dogs from reputable breeders.  We've never had a problem with our dogs.  A pure-bred dog from a good breeder is expensive for a reason.  A good breeder researches the medical history of the bitch and the stud, including the medical history of all the dams and sires several generations back on both sides to radically reduce the chance of problems caused by inbreeding.  A good breeder will offer a guarantee to take the dog back if any hereditary medical condition turns up in your puppy.  A good breeder will keep in touch with you for the life of your dog because they want to know about any medical problems that turn up.  When you get a purebred dog from a good breeder, you are virtually assured that the weight, height, and temperament will be in line with breed standards.

We've had similar experiences with purebreds & reputable breeders. We held off getting a family dog until DS was 6, then researched for a breed that is medium sized & super with kids. For us, this turned out to be a Shetland Sheepdog. It was important to us to find a Sheltie that had the best of the breed attributes & that we could train. He was pet quality, meaning he had a conformation issue that was less than show quality but we couldn't see (he was gorgeous), so he was priced much lower & we had to neuter him, which was always the plan. Shelties have a long double coat, but do a massive shed just twice a year, making grooming easier than the breeds that shed daily. They have a reputation for barking but training greatly helps with this, & he remained a super watchdog. He eventually had some old age health issues that all dogs get if they live long enough; ours was almost 15. He was always so sweet.

We now have another pet-grade (& neutered) purebred Sheltie, super smart & entertaining.

Quality food does make a difference. We feed Fromm's 4-star grain free kibble.

PJ

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #35 on: February 16, 2017, 05:39:11 PM »
If not for you then for future readers of this thread, I'll share my preference for adopting from shelters or rescue groups.  The advantage of an older dog, even if only a little bit older, is that you know exactly what you're getting - kind of the opposite of your perspective.  Most shelters do temperament testing and won't adopt out a dog, especially with a 2.5 year old in the house, if there's any significant behaviour issues.  And what behaviour issues the dog does have will likely be clearly spelled out for you.  (BTW, I also love pitbulls, and the 2 that I've had in the past would absolutely have been as good with kids as any golden retriever or lab out there - though I don't expect you to take my word for that!)  And as first time dog owners (or is that just as adults?) there's more opportunity for you to screw up the training of a dog.  Lots of young adult dogs in shelters that got too big and unmanageable because they weren't trained, you know?  I have one that is truly screwed up by her early life, whose owners didn't even have the decency to take her to a shelter, just abandoned her at the side of the road when she was 6 months old.  So I know what can happen with an inexperienced owner and puppies.

Also, I second the plug for breed specific rescues.  My parents have had two dogs from Golden Rescue Mission, and they've both been wonderful.

That being said, I see nothing wrong with getting a puppy from a reputable breeder, as long as you really do your research.  Do they claim, for example, that their dogs have titles, and if so, have you checked their CKC or AKC registration, etc.  That is a pretty good indication that they follow breed standards.  Do they have both "mom" and "dad" on site?  Are you able to go visit them and see their whole kennel set up?  If you're not planning to show the dog, do they make you sign non-breeding agreements or insist on/arrange for the dog to be spayed or neutered?  You can probably find a good list of questions and criteria online by googling something like "How do I find a reputable breeder?"

But anyway!  Like I said, that was all almost more directed at anyone else who might be reading this thread now or in the future.  Sounds like you've pretty much decided on a plan, and just really want to know about food.  That's cool. 

My first suggestion is to absolutely get the recommended food at first.  Puppies are more fragile than adult dogs, and the change of environment, coupled with a change in food at the same time, can cause really upset tummies.  Diarrhea and lack of appetite can put a puppy at risk of dying in fairly short order, if not addressed quickly.  So buy at least one bag of the recommended food, and follow guidelines from your vet (or easily found online) about the speed to transition pup over to something more economical.

Now, high quality or low, bought at supermarket, pet supply store, or vet?

Though you can find any number of people who will swear by the cheap stuff, I have had the experience (more with cats - especially male cats, who can get blocked from cheap food) that you get what you pay for.  I buy my food at the vet, and as much as people will argue that the vet has a motive to sell you that food, and talk about how little nutrition training a vet has, I will argue back that PetSmart (or Pet Valu or whatever store you shop at) also has a vested interest in selling you certain kinds of food, and that their sales staff certainly have less knowledge of nutrition than my vet.  That being said, I asked my vet once, and he said that though there's nothing at the average supermarket, generally speaking, that he would recommend, but that if money was really tight he would suggest the Science Diet or Eukanuba that you buy at the pet store.  In other words, there is some middle ground.

horsepoor

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #36 on: February 16, 2017, 06:27:40 PM »
Another vote for Taste of the Wild.   (For my mutt from the humane society, to add to the other part of this conversation.  She's 12 years old now, still walks with me for at least an hour every night.)

My two did well on Kirkland for >10 years, but once the larger died, I switched to TotW.  Dog has better breath and smaller poops now.  It costs about $30 a month to feed a 50# dog.

startingsmall

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #37 on: February 16, 2017, 09:10:45 PM »
As a veterinarian, I'm a big fan of Purina foods. They do a lot of research & development, test their foods through feeding trials, and have been around for a long time with a good reputation for quality. They aren't "trendy," but to me that's a good thing.... a lot of the hype around dog foods these days is just that, marketing hype. (i.e. 'byproducts' are not bad, corn is not evil, gluten-free diets have no benefits in dogs, etc.)

My dog and cat eat Purina ProPlan, their high-end line. (Other high-end foods that I like include Royal Canin and Science Diet.)

In the past, when I did not live somewhere with easy access to ProPlan, my dogs ate Purina One and also did well on that food.

If clients have financial constraints, I tell that that Purina Dog/Cat Chow is probably the best 'bang for their buck' among the cheaper foods.

PJ

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Re: Mustachian approved dog food recomendations
« Reply #38 on: February 16, 2017, 10:05:45 PM »
As a veterinarian, I'm a big fan of Purina foods. They do a lot of research & development, test their foods through feeding trials, and have been around for a long time with a good reputation for quality. They aren't "trendy," but to me that's a good thing.... a lot of the hype around dog foods these days is just that, marketing hype. (i.e. 'byproducts' are not bad, corn is not evil, gluten-free diets have no benefits in dogs, etc.)

My dog and cat eat Purina ProPlan, their high-end line. (Other high-end foods that I like include Royal Canin and Science Diet.)

In the past, when I did not live somewhere with easy access to ProPlan, my dogs ate Purina One and also did well on that food.

If clients have financial constraints, I tell that that Purina Dog/Cat Chow is probably the best 'bang for their buck' among the cheaper foods.

Nice to have a vet weigh-in.  Now that you mention it, I had a foster dog in the past, that we used to have to order Purina ProPlan Sensitive Skin and Stomach for.  He did really well on that, when on several other foods we'd tried, he had *really* loose stools.

 

Wow, a phone plan for fifteen bucks!