Good, cost effective grain-free

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Calypso
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Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby Calypso » Tue Jan 19, 2016 12:03 pm

I've been feeding American Natural Premium Duck and Pork grain free. I feel like there may be a bit more filler than is necessary - both dogs have pretty large and frequent poops compared to when they ate Wellness CORE. The food is also extremely oily - as in soak through a nylon travel bag oily. I'm pretty sure that was no the case with Wellness CORE, either. But I was paying around $68/26 lbs of CORE and $52/30 lbs of ANP, which is why I switched in the first place.

Looking at other foods comparable in price that I can easily get locally, I can get Fromm Prairie for $58/26 lb or Taste of the Wild lamb grain free for $45/30 lbs. I thought I remembered little incidents with both Fromm and TOTW, but I can't remember if they were bad enough to avoid for good. I walked past Merrick's grain free because of all the issues they've had and Blue as well. I'm also looking into getting food shipped to see if I can get it cheaper with low to no shipping fees. I hate to cheat on my local pet store, but financially I've got to look after myself right now. :(

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Re: Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby emmas_mom » Tue Jan 19, 2016 12:51 pm

Not sure if it is available in the States, but I like PetKind Green Tripe and Bison for the very small amount of kibble that Ms. Mitzi occasionally eats. I only buy the smallest bag, which is about $20 Cdn (about $14 US) for six pounds, but the heavier bags work out more cost effective. Mitzi's poops are small and firm (often too firm) on this kibble, and as long as she is not on a hunger strike she seems to really like it - and she doesn't touch most kibble.
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Re: Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby Sabine » Tue Jan 19, 2016 1:08 pm

I would avoid TOTW (it's a Diamond brand, not just made by them for someone else, and their track record is abysmal.)

Fromm makes nice products and I have a lot of respect for them since they brought back their canned food operation to the US upon customer demand. Their track record on dry food is solid.

Check out chewy.com, their offerings are really good.
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Re: Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby connie » Tue Jan 19, 2016 1:44 pm

Is there a reason you're using only grain-free?

I only ask because Fromm has a very good line of foods with a lot of variety, and I use both their grain-free and the line with grains in it, for my dogs. I know some dogs (and some breeds) do much better on grain-free, but food has come SO far from the days when the grains were corn and wheat, that I don't avoid grains for health reasons any longer. And I have one dog who has trouble keeping weight on, so he does better with grains in his food, actually.

Fromm also has a frequent-buyer program, which I believe they offer online and that my local independent pet store offers: buy 12 bags and the 13th bag is free. The free bag is of the size you bought most frequently, which they track by saving the UPC codes from the bags when you check out. It's nice, every now and then, to be told 'you get a free one' and to add a bag to my order without adding to my bill. :thumbup:

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Re: Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby UpwardDog » Tue Jan 19, 2016 6:06 pm

I'm somewhat on the fence about grain free too. I'm not convinced peas and lentils are better for my dogs than oats and rice. have left the oldies on Acana grainless simply because Sam's belly is (finally) happy on the lamb and the beef and after all we went through--unless I have to , I'm not changing.

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Re: Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby connie » Tue Jan 19, 2016 8:12 pm

There is a vet in one of my agility classes -- in her early 30s, she runs a rescue French Bulldog that is DA BOMB on the agility course, so funny! -- and last week she went into a rant about the 'must feed grain-free' crowd, comparing them to the Paleo diet people. She wound up with '-- there are crappy grain-free foods TOO, people!' and we were all laughing. She must get some doozies in her practice.

I am old enough to remember many things, one of which was the move to raw feeding and the discovery, in the 1990s, that typical kibble was often about 80% crummy cereal grain. This led to the diet that reduced grains to about 15% of the diet (which is where I still am), and after that came the prey-model, GRAINS ARE EVIL diets, and then the extremes had been reached on both sides. LOL!

Shelties don't do well on food with grains in it; they seem to have trouble metabolizing grains in kibble, and so they get fat on those foods. My Border Collie, not so much! He gets a side dish of pasta with many of his meals. My Lapphund handles grain well and since he's only recently neutered, I'm still finding out what he needs to eat to maintain a good weight and not get fat. But when I find a good food, like Fromm's, I feed several formulations of it. Jill might have dogs that don't do well on grains, I don't know (or remember) that if so. But I agree with you, Heather: there is gonna be filler in ALL kibble, and I don't think peas or lentils are better than barley or oats.

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Re: Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby Calypso » Wed Jan 20, 2016 6:53 am

Havana does ok with grains, but Pixel is more likely to have an allergy flare up if there are grains in his food. I just don't think he metabolizes them as well as he does other things. He's tends to have goopy eyes if he gets a lot of treats with grains and he's already have some issues with the insulation fibers floating around from the work on my house. I have no issues with good quality grains if the dogs do well on them, but I don't want to deal with two different kinds of food, either.

I thought I remembered TOTW having track record issues. I know a lot of people who feed Fromm's, so I'll give them a try. Chewy's does save me about $6 on dry food and $4 on the canned food for the cat, which isn't a ton, but adds up over the year.

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Sabine
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Re: Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby Sabine » Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:30 pm

'there are crappy grain-free foods TOO, people!'
Yep. I've been telling people that for years. Find what works for your dog.

I also don't know why fingers are always pointed at "grains" (plural) vs. pointing out something specific. Just because wheat (random pick for example's sake) may be problematic doesn't mean that rice or oats are. If you are feeding a formula that has multiple carb sources, it bears investigating which one causes issues. Usually the simpelr formulas are also better, vs. something with 50 ingredients.
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Re: Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby maxs_mommy » Wed Jan 20, 2016 9:05 pm

We feed Fromm for Charlie (yes, it's a grain free but Charlie is a cat. :p) and I really like them as a company. If we ever put Max on kibble again I'd go Fromm first.
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Re: Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby Amanda » Wed Jan 20, 2016 9:57 pm

I have been feeding the Fromm classic and gold lines with grains for several months. Very happy with both. Just switched to the grain free large breed prairie this week. Will let you know how it goes. It get it from chewy.com too. And on auto shop I save 5%.

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Re: Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby KatrinH » Sat Jan 23, 2016 12:36 am

Sabine, I just had someone post about feeding diamond dog food. Do you have any links about the problem with them? Id love to give her more info.

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Re: Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby PofiMia » Mon Jan 25, 2016 12:51 pm

I have fed Fromm in the past and wish either my cats or dogs liked it as well as Solid Gold kibble, but they don't. So everyone is doing grain free from Solid Gold here.

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Re: Good, cost effective grain-free

Postby whiteboxerboy » Mon Jan 25, 2016 1:08 pm

All of the dogs here eat Fromm and are doing great on it, even sensitive Gringo.
Among the many good things I have to say about this food, the cost is significantly lower than many other kibbles and the ingredient list is much smaller.


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