I started Chaos out on Science Diet as a puppy. I started educating myself and read a lot about how the "natural" foods are better. I decided to stop by the local pet store that caters to this market and they told me I should stick him on Nature's Variety Prairie formula. Still feeling really uneducated, I decided to sit in on a Science Diet rep that came to my vet's office. She said the following (if I can remember correctly it's been months):
- - No food is called natural, they go by holistic or other such names because they are not really natural - and once a law was established making companies meet certain requirements in order to put "Natural Food" on their bag they all started calling themselves "holistic"
- Science Diet can be called "holistic" if they wanted to going by the same standards as these other food companies
- All the foods say their first product is meat, but that is because they separate, say rice, into a bunch of different categories to make it appear there is less rice - ie. brown rice, white rice etc. - and SD doesn't do that
- Corn isn't as bad as people make it seem - they say it is indigestible (which she said is true) but in dog food it is ground up so it does not cause issues
- Science Diet is one of the few food companies that actually run trials on dogs with their food to see how it affects them over I think maybe 6 months time (maybe longer I forget)
- The natural foods are just buying into what is big now - people are becoming more aware of their health and they are now transferring that to their pets
Phew! I think that covers most of what I remember - details might be slightly different.
Anyways, she passed around a bunch of empty bags of dog food and pointed out the reasons why they were bad or decent or good. She convinced me to switch back to SD, and so I did. He did fine on it, aside from he had gooky eyes, chewed on his feet, and had yeasty ear infections.
So, after a few months we switched to TOTW, which I have been pleased with but now he has higher protein levels in his urine. Could have had this all along, I am getting a urine protein:creatinine ratio done on him this week.
Also, my mom doesn't like the idea that there are a million different "natural" food companies and not all of them are really regulated or test their food on dogs. I read that Nature's Variety is AAFCO approved and they check for bacterial/parasites before sales of the bags. Which would be better to feed - Prairie or Instinct?
I have read some mixed reviews on TOTW, unsure about their sources etc. and see a lot of good about Nature's Variety. I like Nature's Variety because they have the raw patties too that I can get for treats here and there.
Anyways, opinions on ANYTHING in this post would be greatly appreciated! If you prefer one type of food over the other please let me know why.
Thanks! (Sorry for the book!)