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I have an almost 8 month old large breed puppy (husky x malamute x collie). In January I might be moving out of my parents house, and will be taking him with me. I am wanting to switch his dog food to something different, but I would like some suggestions on a cheaper quality dog food that can be found at a store like walmart, or a pet supply store.

Right now he is on Purina Alpo ranch house (no red dye). I will bring a bag of this food with me when I go, so I can switch him over properly, but what do you guys feed your dogs (not interested in a raw diet or wet food, he gets dry food only)

Do you find feeding Blue Buffalo expensive for one dog? I was thinking about getting him on that, but won't be able to afford a really expensive dog food, along with other expenses for him, my horse and myself.
 

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I have an almost 8 month old large breed puppy (husky x malamute x collie). In January I might be moving out of my parents house, and will be taking him with me. I am wanting to switch his dog food to something different, but I would like some suggestions on a cheaper quality dog food that can be found at a store like walmart, or a pet supply store.

Right now he is on Purina Alpo ranch house (no red dye). I will bring a bag of this food with me when I go, so I can switch him over properly, but what do you guys feed your dogs (not interested in a raw diet or wet food, he gets dry food only)

Do you find feeding Blue Buffalo expensive for one dog? I was thinking about getting him on that, but won't be able to afford a really expensive dog food, along with other expenses for him, my horse and myself.
Welcome and may i ask what your budget is? trouble is with all those brands from walmart and any supermarket and any from vets well you have to feed more for the dog to get nutrients where say if you fed for example acana you would have to feed way way less food to him to get those nutrients. Blue buffalo were in a lawsuit for not being honest about their ingredients and labelling. On here if we can learn what your budget is we can help you choose a better food to suit the budget.

Others on here will be able to help you more then me probably since i raw feed one dog and the other is on acana a high quality food and trust me my brothers lab was eating royal canin neutered adult large breed and he was on 6 cups a day of food to get the nutrients. Now on acana he is on 2 cups daily. Look to be more expensive but when you look at it feeding guidelines and see you feed way less then currently (most likely esp if you were to see how much to feed once adult at adult weight) you save more in long run but not all of us can afford such foods and i more then anyone understand and respect that. i was just using the above as an example for you incase long term you can afford a better quality food.
 

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I would not be looking to cut costs when it comes to food for your dog. Blue Buffalo is good food, Science Diet, and some others, but what they eat is really important for their health and longevity. Talk to your Vet, for his recommendations.
 

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Wal mart makes their own brand called Pure Balance that doesn't read terribly. Obviously you can't trust the quality of the company since it's Wal Mart but if that's the best you can afford, then that's what I would do.

If you have any local tractor supplies you could feed 4 Health.
 

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One brand that, to my knowledge, has never had any recalls or allegations of using cheap/unhealthy ingredients is Earthborn. It can be hard to find as it isn't stocked by Petco or Petsmart but is well worth the search. I got the largest bag that they carry in stores (I think 30 lbs) and it was alittle over $50 but lasted almost a month. It's got 4.5 stars on dogfoodrating.com, which is pretty reliable. However, I switched to Wellness when I got my second puppy as I could not find Large Breed Puppy food at any physical locations.

Other good options would be Wellness or Timber Wolf or Blue Buffalo, which are all stocked by most pet stores and are reasonably priced for very high quality foods.
 

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I would not be looking to cut costs when it comes to food for your dog. Blue Buffalo is good food, Science Diet, and some others, but what they eat is really important for their health and longevity. Talk to your Vet, for his recommendations.
Blue went to court recently for lying about ingredients. both blue and hills science diet, eukanuba, purina, and some others contain by products and just load of grains/fillers so i wouldnt reccomend it at all. Vets also arent qualifed in nutrition and just recomend what they sell.

My best friend in uk listened to her vet about food he said to feed supermarket or somethign else barkers or something simliar her chihauaha wouldnt eat. I educated her about food and we went to pets at home and found a great quality food wainwrights 70% meat and 30% fruit and veg no grains her dog ate it right away over the old food which was meat and animal detraitives.

Whilst she was happy he liked the food and eating it she was very angry at the vet and for listening to the vet. i cant blame her
 

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Vets also arent qualifed in nutrition and just recomend what they sell.

/QUOTE]

That's a ridiculous statement. I think you need to find a new Vet, one that cares about his patients and one that takes the time to understand nutrition. I'm sure some are not qualified to recommend food, some are probably not qualified to even be Vets, but to infer that all are too stupid to understand nutrition is insulting to the vast majority of Vets that do care and do know what nutrition is required.
 

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/QUOTE]

That's a ridiculous statement. I think you need to find a new Vet, one that cares about his patients and one that takes the time to understand nutrition. I'm sure some are not qualified to recommend food, some are probably not qualified to even be Vets, but to infer that all are too stupid to understand nutrition is insulting to the vast majority of Vets that do care and do know what nutrition is required.[/quote]

That was very rude. You can ask majority of people on here if vets are qualified about nutrition all the training they get is few hours training from either hills or royal canin and therefore have to sell that food.

FYI my previous vet admitted to me they don't get training on dog nutrional needs but only get trained with medical and surgical things.

My vet I've had for two years is the best I found he knows a bit I found for my dog and the most caring vet in my experience. So caring if animal sick enough he will stay up all night looking after the sick animal until its on way back to full health and he offered free microchip when all was alarming number cats and dogs going missing which was very generous.

Only qualified people in vet industry for nutrition are vet nutrionist.

dogs need more meat then grains and they sure do not need fillers. Science diet eukabuba pedigree purina are full of fillers grains and hardly any meat and got by products. My lab is fed acana a top quality food with hardly any fillers or grains full of meat and veg. Happy to copy and paste ingredients for you to compare.
 

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I'm with @crazy. Vets may know some basic things, but they don't know the ins and outs of nutrition all that well. It's the same with most general practitioners - they could tell you a bit about nutrition, but if you want deeper info you'd go to a dietitian. I've got a friend in vet school who thinks it is perfectly acceptable for a dog food to contain corn as a main ingredient.

I've loved my vet a lot in the past, but the day she looked me in the eye and told me that my dog was reactive because he was "protective" was the day I realized she really didn't know everything.

OP, I don't really care much for Blue Buffalo. If you have a Tractor Supply, I've heard 4Health is a good food for a decent price. You could also head over to dogfoodadvisor and look at some 4-5 star foods, then price them in your area. Websites like chewy.com can also ship the food, and it tends to be more inexpensive.
 

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Hills science diet orginal ingredients Hill's Science Diet Puppy Healthy Development Original Dry Dog Food, 30-lb bag

Chicken Meal, Cracked Pearled Barley, Whole Grain Wheat, Pork Meal, Whole Grain Corn, Whole Grain Sorghum, Corn Gluten Meal, Pork Fat, Chicken Liver Flavor, Dried Beet Pulp, Fish Oil, Lactic Acid, Flaxseed, Pork Liver Flavor, Soybean Oil, Dicalcium Phosphate, Iodized Salt, Potassium Chloride, L-lysine, Choline Chloride, vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, L-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of Vitamin C), Niacin Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin A Supplement, Calcium Pantothenate, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Folic Acid, Vitamin D3 Supplement), minerals (Ferrous Sulfate, Zinc Oxide, Copper Sulfate, Manganous Oxide, Calcium Iodate, Sodium Selenite), Taurine, Oat Fiber, Mixed Tocopherols for freshness, Phosphoric Acid, Beta-Carotene, Natural Flavors, Dried Apples, Dried Broccoli, Dried Carrots, Dried Cranberries, Dried Peas

ingredients (uk/nz)
Hill's Science Plan Puppy Healthy Development Medium Chicken 12kg | Pets At Home

Composition: Chicken (minimum Chicken 34%, Chicken and Turkey combined 50%): Ground maize, chicken and turkey meal, animal fat, digest, dried beet pulp, maize gluten meal, fish oil, potassium chloride, disodium phosphate, salt, L-tryptophan, taurine, vitamins and trace elements. Naturally preserved with mixed tocopherols, citric acid and rosemary extract. Analytical Constituents: Dry Matter: Protein 30%, Fat 21.20%, Carbohydrate (NFE) 39.70%, Fibre (crude) 2.30%, Moisture -, Calcium 1.50%, Phosphorus 1.20%, Sodium 0.50%, Potassium 0.80%, Magnesium 0.10%, Omega-3 fatty acids 0.75%, Omega-6 fatty acids 3.25%, Taurine 0.11%, Vitamin A 11881IU/kg, Vitamin D 551IU/kg, Vitamin E 649mg/kg, Vitamin C 76mg/kg, Beta-carotene 1.6mg/kg.Eukanuba
Eukanuba Puppy Chicken Formula Dry Dog Food, 33-lb bag
Ingredients(USA)

Chicken, chicken by-product meal, corn meal, ground whole grain sorghum, brewers rice, chicken flavor, dried beet pulp, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols, a source of vitamin E), dried egg product, fish oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols, a source of vitamin E), brewers dried yeast, potassium chloride, salt, dicalcium phosphate, choline chloride, fructooligosaccharides, minerals (ferrous sulfate, zinc oxide, manganese sulfate, copper sulfate, manganous oxide, potassium iodide, cobalt carbonate), dl-methionine, calcium carbonate, vitamins (ascorbic acid, vitamin A acetate, calcium pantothenate, biotin, thiamine mononitrate (source of vitamin B1), vitamin B12 supplement, niacin, riboflavin supplement (source of vitamin B2), inositol, pyridoxine hydrochloride (source of vitamin B6), vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid), vitamin E supplement, marigold, beta-carotene, rosemary extract

ingredients(UK/NZ) Eukanuba Large Breed Puppy Food Chicken 15kg | Pets At Home

Composition and Nutrition: Composition: Dried Chicken And Turkey (25%, A Natural Source Of Glucosamine And Chondroitin Sulphate), Maize, Wheat, Sorghum, Animal Fat, Rice, Dried Whole Egg, Dried Beet Pulp (2.8%), Hydrolysed Animal Proteins, Fish Oil, Brewer's Dried Yeast, Potassium Chloride, Sodium Chloride, Fructooligosaccharides (0.28%), Calcium Carbonate. Technological Additives: None stated; Sensory Additives: None stated; Nutritional Additives: Vitamin A (45110IU/kg), Vitamin D3 (1497IU/kg), Vitamin E (251mg/kg), L-Carnitine (57mg/kg), B-Carotene (28.5mg/kg); Trace Elements Contain Basic Cobaltous Carbonate Monohydrate (0.48mg/kg), Cupric Sulphate Pentahydrate (45mg/kg), Potassium Iodide (3.3mg/kg), Ferrous Sulphate Monohydrate (606mg/kg), Manganous Sulphate Monohydrate (46mg/kg), Manganous Oxide (33mg/kg), Zinc Oxide (211mg/kg). Analytical Constituents: Protein 29%, Crude Fibres 6.7%, Crude Oils and Fats 18%, Crude Ash 2.1%, Moisture 8%.




Acana
ACANA Wild Prairie Regional Formula Grain-Free Dry Dog Food, 28.6-lb bag
Ingredients

Deboned chicken, chicken meal, green peas, turkey meal, chicken liver oil, field beans, red lentils, deboned turkey, whole egg, deboned walleye, sun-cured alfalfa, pea fibre, chicken liver, herring oil, apples, pears, pumpkin, butternut squash, parsnips, carrots, spinach greens, cranberries, blueberries, kelp, chicory root, juniper berries, angelica root, marigold flowers, sweet fennel, peppermint leaf, lavender, rosemary. Supplements: Vitamin A supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin E supplement, zinc proteinate, copper proteinate, dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product

Just to help you compare ingredients and see the difference note all puppy food but ingredients dont change much or if at all for adult version
 

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I think you need a new Vet. The one we go to cooks for his own dogs, and is very into nutrition needs and individualizes diets for dogs as necessary. He also detects nutritional deficiencies via blood tests, something a non-vet could not do. I just could not disagree more with the generalization that all Vets are incapable of understanding a dogs nutritional needs. I agree some probable don't, but the ones I have delt with do and care a great deal about nutrition for their patients. I'm not trying to be rude, crazy, but in all honesty I detest painting every Vet out there with such a broad brush.
 

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Go raw! If you find a good lead on meat, it's cheaper than expensive dog food.
I keep reading this and I'm not entirely sure it's true, at least not in my experience.

On mid-priced kibble (Eukanuba) I'm figuring it was costing me around 40 cents a day to feed my spaniel mix. I've never fed my dogs a top brand but I'm figuring triple that for a high end kibble, so $1.20 a day?

For raw, it's costing me around $3 to $3.25 per day for my spaniel mix. The most expensive thing I buy for him is oxtails, which cost $6/lb.

One thing I figure is that people who say it's so cheap to feed raw are feeding a lot of chicken. Yes, I buy chicken at 69 cents a pound, but the chicken makes up a fairly small part of what I'm feeding. And IMO chicken is not the best meat for dogs. Buying in bulk is not an option and I'm not keen on investing a lot of time looking for deals, it's taking me significantly more time as it is to buy and bag up the raw food now.
 

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@Laco - I wish I could find a vet that would actually be willing to discuss foods with me instead of lecturing me about food choices I make. I haven't been lucky enough to find a vet that doesn't simply want me to feed my dogs Royal Canin/Hills Science, which I don't want. I think you are very lucky to have such an informed, caring vet.
@anankae - I have to agree with you. My guys were recently back on raw, but had to stop due to lack of space to store it all. It was very expensive, and that buying the strange cuts/parts no one wants. I also find meat in general to be significantly more expensive here in Canada than in the US
 

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@Laco - I wish I could find a vet that would actually be willing to discuss foods with me instead of lecturing me about food choices I make. I haven't been lucky enough to find a vet that doesn't simply want me to feed my dogs Royal Canin/Hills Science, which I don't want. I think you are very lucky to have such an informed, caring vet.
@anankae - I have to agree with you. My guys were recently back on raw, but had to stop due to lack of space to store it all. It was very expensive, and that buying the strange cuts/parts no one wants. I also find meat in general to be significantly more expensive here in Canada than in the US
Maybe our Vet is unusual, but last year when Samantha was very ill and refused to eat, I spent probably the better part of an hour with our Vet discussing her nutritional needs. At the time we were more worried about weight loss, so his advice was to offer her anything she would eat, and when she was better we would then focus on her nutritional needs. We did exactly that, as she recovered, and following his advice, some food we cooked, some we ordered from a kitchen that specialized in pet food, and she fully recovered and now we are watching excess weight gain, again controlled by food and feeding recommended by our Vet. I can't say enough about and for him, but this is a Vet that is doing exactly what he was born to do, and it shows every time he works with an animal. There is little he does not know about the needs of his patients, including when he is up against something he can't deal with and needs a specialist involved, which was a point we were at for a short time last year. The specialist got the diagnosis, and made recommendations, and suggested some additional tests that our Vet performed, then the two of them talked and came up with a successful plan for Samantha.
 

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I have an almost 8 month old large breed puppy (husky x malamute x collie). In January I might be moving out of my parents house, and will be taking him with me. I am wanting to switch his dog food to something different, but I would like some suggestions on a cheaper quality dog food that can be found at a store like walmart, or a pet supply store.

Right now he is on Purina Alpo ranch house (no red dye). I will bring a bag of this food with me when I go, so I can switch him over properly, but what do you guys feed your dogs (not interested in a raw diet or wet food, he gets dry food only)

Do you find feeding Blue Buffalo expensive for one dog? I was thinking about getting him on that, but won't be able to afford a really expensive dog food, along with other expenses for him, my horse and myself.
If you have a local Tractor Supply, their 4 Health brand is a really good option for folks who want to go a step above grocery store brands but cannot afford the ultra expensive stuff. I have three large dogs (55 lb, 65 lb, and 100 lb), and there is just no way I could afford to feed them some of these outrageously expensive dog foods. 4 Health is as expensive as I can manage, and I do get the grain free (Turkey and Potato seems to be the best fit for my guys), which is a couple bucks more per bag than the grain inclusive.
 

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@Laco yes you're vet is unusual, that being said, there are very similar vets around. In the practice I work at there is 1 in 4 that cares to research alternatives to the big 3 (Purina, Hill's, Royal Canin). The vets I work with, while amazing at their jobs, aren't great at nutrition needs. I have been given the unique opportunities to sit in on CE and the meetings Hill's and Canin have given to them and they by their sales tactics hook line and stinker every time.

Not their fault though, they are science people. They need statistical analysis (which raw doesn't provide), they need proof of feeding trials (many commercially available foods only formulate to meet the requirements instead). So if a company comes in and tells them x, y, z heals or helps skin disease, or allergies, or is very easily digestible, then the vet's are going to read the research and recommend that path to their patients. If the big 3 say corn is good, have stats to back it up, then corn is good.

My poor colleagues got so confused when Hill's recently decided to remove corn from some of their formulas. Here they had all these pamphlets and blurbs to tell clients why it was good and they go and change on them.

Tessa is currently on a rotation of Acana grain frees, Orijen in the summer, and Taste of the wild (all of these are the only flax free foods available to us). Totw isn't my fave but she does good and is my go to budget food when I have a rough month, like this month - vet bills have been stacking up because of Tessa's allergies, global warming is not her friend, and she ate a safety pin (how I don't know)

I would also recommend: Go! by petcurean, Kirkland, Nature's Domain (also at Costco), Fromm, and Diamond naturals.
 
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Our girl gets a lot of turkey & chicken backs, necks, etc and a mix of veggies & rice. We give her organ meat from poultry & beef weekly but definitely not every day. The only thing she never gets is pork. On average, we're spending approximately $1.50 - $2 dollars per day. We get very cheap turkey and spend the rest of the budget on organ meats.

We used to buy $80 bags that lasted about a month and a week or two, depending on how active she'd been (she's very active) and she'd STILL be hungry and look too thin because she had constant diarrhea. We had countless vet visits that cost us hundreds of dollars in tests and nothing ever came up.

Her blood work has always been normal but since switching to raw, her coat looks better, she builds muscle like crazy and she doesn't suffer from chronic diarrhea anymore. So, all in all, yes, it's a lot cheaper and I can honestly say she just seems happier. :)
 
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