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Peoples opinions on homemade food

Discussion in 'Dog Health and Nutrition' started by Chimpman, Jul 6, 2014.


  1. Chimpman

    Chimpman PetForums Newbie

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    I have a french bulldog that has a bit of a problem with dry skin. Someone has recommended moving on to a homemade diet as their frenchie had a similar problem and the change of diet has cured it completely.

    What are peoples opinions on this?

    how many of you make homemade meals for your dogs?

    Any receipe suggestions?

    I am also aware that feeding raw seems to be all the rage at the moment but having read some horror stories I am not comfortable going down this root.

    Thanks
     
  2. pogo

    pogo PetForums VIP

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    I feed raw always have done, no idea what horror stories there are though! but it is A LOT easier to do then homemade food, as that tends to need supplementing to add in the nutrients that is lost during cooking etc.

    There are a couple of members who do homecooked diet so hopefully they will see this thread
     
  3. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    Same as any food, depends on what research you do about ingredients, and the effort you put into it. A home made diet can vary greatly, I do feed raw, my eldest dog will be nine next month, youngest is two, not had any problems relating to their diet, but have heard of people having problems, and it's usually caused by people switching over too quickly, and using meats/bones that are too rich. There are dogs that just don't suit raw feeding as well, not one food suits all dogs, but my preference is to know what it is I am giving my dogs, a bonus is that because I've gone round and sourced from local small suppliers, where I also buy my food, they give me a lot for free.
     
  4. smokeybear

    smokeybear PetForums VIP

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    Hi, there are lots of people who make home cooked meals for their dogs and there are several good books and websites to refer to.

    Whole Dog Journal - you need to subscribe to this but it is a very good publication.

    DogAware.com: Homemade Diets for Dogs

    Mary also guides you to good books on this subject.

    There are others such as that of the Vohards and Dr Pitcairn.

    That is just a start for you.
     
  5. mrs phas

    mrs phas karma is a funny old thing

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    If your worried about raw [bones stuck, impacted bowels, punctured stomach/bowels etc] then you can get frozen minced food from P&H or use Nutriment
    Nutriment Raw Dog Food
    theyll have a link to who stocks it in your area [might even be P&H]

    Another option than home cooked dog food and the worry of getting a correct balance of nutrients is to go for a company that does it for you,
    eg
    lilys kitchen
    Wet Food
    [im sure there are others i just cant think of them:blushing:]

    and taste of the wild are introducing wet food too
     
  6. Lilylass

    Lilylass PetForums VIP

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    I used to make Ben homemade 'wet' to mix with his kibble (about 50/50 ratio) as I never found a commercial one that suited him.

    With Maisie, I stick to high quality wets - Nature Menu (pouches/tins & the Country Hunter range), Wainwrights (Pets at Home), Forth Glade, Lukullus etc and she's doing really well now I've figured out the ingredients she can & can't have!


    With HM it can be quite tying if you go anywhere / it can take ages (and I mean hours & hours) to chop, prepare, cook all the ingredients & then bag them up to be frozen & you need to be able to dedicate freezer room just for the dog - OK if you've got the time though!

    I don't know that I would ever have gone fully HM as I'd have worried I would miss a vital nutritional element



    What do you feed her / what foods have you tried / what sets her skin off?

    We might be able to come up with some suggested commercial foods
     
  7. Chimpman

    Chimpman PetForums Newbie

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    It was recommended that I supplement the homemade food with a good quality dry food to make sure she got all the extras that she needs.

    I have tried most of the well known foods with her, another reason I wanted to give homemade a go with her is she seems to be very fussy. She quickly gets bored with the food we buy her and stops eating it, both dry and wet foods she will wolf it down if it is something new then after a week or two she will just turn her nose up at it.

    At the moment I am feeding her a mix of four friends dry food and wainwrights wet. The person who sold me the four friends food said that as it contains a higher proportion of aloe vera it will be good for her skin. I will continue feeding this for a while as he said it can take up to four weeks to see the benefit (assuming she will still eat it) then try the homemade option.

    We haven't been able to work out what is setting it off.
     
  8. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    Out of my four, my flatcoat will turn her nose up at a meal more often than the others, if she does, she misses that meal. In actual fact, none of them are underweight, a couple of them could do with losing a few lbs, so I don't worry too much if they are a good weight, and turn their nose up.
     
  9. Chimpman

    Chimpman PetForums Newbie

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    I do possibly worry too much when she doesn't eat. She is a healthy weight and has plenty of energy.
     
  10. Lilylass

    Lilylass PetForums VIP

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    'Well know foods' such as ?????

    One of the great things about this forum is that I can almost guarantee there will be a whole load of foods that you didn't know existed!:)

    Have a look at the dry and wet food indexes at the top of the board to see what I mean


    Have you done a proper elimination diet with her?

    Its really only by doing something like that, that youll be able to identify which ingredients cause problems for her
     
  11. GoldenRetrieverman

    GoldenRetrieverman PetForums VIP

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  12. LaceWing

    LaceWing PetForums Senior

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    I’m all for raw, but not cooked. When you cook the meat you destroy the enzymes that help in digestion. Cooking also destroys vitamin C. Raw meat naturally has trace amounts of vitamin C. You dog also needs bone, and you don’t want to feed cooked bone.
     
  13. smokeybear

    smokeybear PetForums VIP

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    Dogs manage to digest cooked meat whether it is home made, in a can, vacuum packed or in kibble.

    Dogs synthesise their own Vitamin C, although many of us believe that in many cases dogs benefit from supplementation.

    Of course Vitamin C is found in many more foods than meat and in fact meat is one of the poorest sources of it.

    Dogs do not need bone, they need calcium

    Calcium can be provided by ground eggshell to name but one source.

    HTH
     
  14. IncaThePup

    IncaThePup PetForums VIP

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    If your dog is a fussy eater try mixing things up..do you give her a food in a bowl everytime? Try stuffing it in a kong and let her work out how to get it.

    Mine get a varied diet of fresh cooked foods when I have cooked - for examples todays breakfast for them is left over mash and veg mixed with tin of sardines and stuffed in kongs (Fishy pie kong) as we finished off all the roast chicken yesterday. (yesterday they got veg and chicken on their kibble).

    I use a basic kibble as the 'base'..using JWB grain free fish & veg at the minute (mainly cos we won it and still got 25kg left) a fish based one be good to help skin... the Green Dog Salmon, Trout & veg was a nice one too. (was on that when won this comp)

    What I liked about JWB one though was a single protein food so any sauces/gravy etc listed in the ingredients is the same flavour as the main meat (or fish) so there's fewer ingredients.

    A couple of times a week mine get a tin of sardines or pilchards on their dinners to share, they both have really soft silky coats (a 13yr old lab x and a 21 month old Border Collie). Sometimes I add a bit of Salmon oil into a meal too.

    Sometimes I top dinners or stuff kongs with wet food, always keep some in for when my fresh stuff runs out. Usually I pick cereal free ones as any cereal at all in commercial dog foods makes my collie itch, though he's fine with fresh cooked rice! Sometimes I think its the extra ingredients and supplements that causes the problems rather than them been allergic to the main meat source in the food.

    Rocco Sensitive is a good kong stuffer. can get big tins cheap (from zooplus), its cereal free and the dogs seem to love it.

    Mine like the Hi-life & Applaws pouches too that look like finely shed chicken and veg as a light topper.

    I tired raw but my eldest wouldn't eat it and when she did was very sick afterwards and my youngest wasn't that bothered, would eat it but would still choose cooked chicken over raw chicken. I gave him recreational bones to play with but have noticed one of his large canine teeth looks chipped on one side, so just give him the large dokas chews now airdried pork with dried chicken (or duck)wrapped round and they give him something to chew on.. mine both love hollings dried beef jerky which get big boxes with huge strips of it in. They get dried fish skins too but they don't last long!

    Fish4dogs kibble has a stronger fishy smell if you need a stronger smell to tempt them.
     
  15. Chimpman

    Chimpman PetForums Newbie

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    Thank you all for your opinions / advice so far. I do not have time at the minute to list all the foods we have tried but I will do that later.

    Could you explain the process of the elimination diet to me please?
     
  16. smokeybear

    smokeybear PetForums VIP

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    If you believe that your dog is intolerant to one or more of the ingredients of its current diet then the way to deteremine this is as follows

    Change the diet to one he has not experienced before and try it for 6 weeks.

    Eg Capelin and Tapioca

    Once the six weeks are over and, provided that the dog is ok on the new diet, start reintroducing the food(s) one at a time that you think are a problem.

    If there is a recurrence of the issue, return to the elmination diet (a step that most people omit) to see if the status improves.

    If it does you knwo you have found the offending ingredient(s) and you can thus avoid them.
     
  17. Lilylass

    Lilylass PetForums VIP

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    It can be a long frustrating process but def worth it in the end

    Basically you need to pick a bland food that you think he'll be OK with - say chicken & rice and feed only that for a couple of weeks and see what happens

    If things aren't good, try fish & rice or fish & potato - you need to find a 'base' food he's fine with as its always where you return to if you encounter a problem

    If things are good then you know he's OK with that and you can then introduce one new ingredient for a couple of weeks* (if still OK you know he can have that), remove that ingredient and try the next one - one thing at a time

    Any flare ups & you know he cant have that particular ingredient, so return to the 'base' food until all settled and start again

    * I guess this depends on how quickly he would have a reaction, he might have one straight away in which case you'd remove the ingredient & go back to base food - personally I like to do it slowly so I know the ingredient is def OK - others may have different thoughts on the timescale
     
  18. baskerville

    baskerville PetForums Junior

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    Weird! Just posted a post about feeding natural for my French bulldog:D also read alot of mixed reviews for raw diets, suppose its just luck and the individual dog maybe?
    Seems like theres definitely alot more people wanting to get away from feeding the big brand dog foods though!
    I feed my 2 sardines or mackerel every now and then and that seems to have given their coats a bit more shine!
     
  19. Chimpman

    Chimpman PetForums Newbie

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    Sorry I haven't been back to this thread my internet has been down.

    The elimination diet sounds tricky in terms of pre-bought food as they contain so many ingredients.

    We have always fed her what we thought were good quality dry foods as a staple. (eden, JWB, wainwrights and currently four friends) and mixed it with wet to try and make it more interesting for her.
    The wet foods have been given in fairly small quantities and have generally been the more commercial brands (pedigree, P@H, butchers and currently wainwrights).
     
  20. Lilylass

    Lilylass PetForums VIP

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    I'm having problems with my internet this week too :(

    With the elimination diet, you would have to make it yourself - time consuming but really ingredient by ingredient is the only way to do it


    The foods you've listed - some are OK (eg Eden, Wainwrights) but some are awful (eg Pedigree) and will be full of cereals

    However, even the good ones will still have a whole list of ingredients in them and if even one of those doesn't agree with her - then it doesn't really matter how good it is :(

    A diet of say chicken or fish with either rice or potato is an easy place to start..... readily available, cheap (you can get frozen cheaply at the supermarket) and quick to do
     
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