Tuesday, May 25, 2010

8 ways to get a finicky eater to eat

From Dogster:
First, you want to rule any health issues out first when a dog makes any behavioral change but if your vet gives your pup the thumbs up, there are several ways to get him to eat without disrupting his stomach.

1. Tone Down the Treats - A finicky eater is more likely to eat if he's not comparing his dog food to a liver treat.
2. Feed Often - Try feeding smaller amounts of his regular food three or four times a day.
3. Exercise - It's good for so many things and it increases a dog's hunger. Try always exercising your pup before a meal.
4. Spay or Neuter - If you haven't already, fix your pup. Besides the many health and behavioral benefits, it can help prevent a finicky eater.
5. Make it Positive - Always make feeding time a positive experience. If your pup associates it with irritability or punishment from you, he will be less likely to want to eat.
6. Keep It Quiet - Feed your dog in a quiet area without children or other dogs mulling around.
7. Try Different Times - Some dogs eat better in the afternoon, others eat better an hour after you're home. Test it and see what time and situation work best for yours.
8. Resist Temptations - Try the other tips before giving into the urge to tempt your finicky pup to eat with people food. You'll find that a few pieces of cooked chicken will perhaps tempt him for a time but he'll soon grow bored of that, too.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Treats | Milkbone Alternatives

cheap. $2.50 each at big lots.

easy. open box and hand to dog.

just like a milkbone, but better.

Ingredient comparison:
Milkbones Crunchy TreatWheat flour, beef meal and beef bone meal, corn flour, sugar, dried digest of poultry by-products, cooked bone marrow preserved with BHA, BHT and citric acid, beef fat preserved with tocopherols, salt, brewers dried yeast, artificial color (includes red 40), iron oxide, sodium metabisulfite (dough conditioner), natural flavor.

Cloud Star Muttos (duck/sweet potato) - Whole Wheat Flour, Ground Oats, Duck, Chicken Fat, Sweet Potato, Caramel Color (natural coloring agent), Salt, mixed tocopherols (natural preservative). 
- - - - - - - - - -  - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -  - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Milkbones BiscuitsWheat flour, wheat bran, beef meal and beef bone meal, beef fat preserved with tocopherols, wheat germ, poultry by-product meal, dried vegetable pomace, salt, lamb meal, chicken meal, turkey meal, minerals (dicalcium phosphate, iron oxide, zinc sulfate, calcium carbonate, copper sulfate, ethylenediamine dihydriodide (source of iodine)), artificial color (includes yellow 5, red 40, blue 1), brewers dried yeast, malted barley flour, vitamins (choline chloride, dl-alpha tocopheryl acetate (vitamin E), vitamin A acetate, calcium pantothenate, riboflavin, vitamin B12 supplement, d-activated animal sterol (source of vitamin D3)), sodium metabisulfite (dough conditioner), whey casein (a milk protein).

Cloud Star Trail Hound (peanut butter) - Whole Wheat Flour, Ground Whole Oats, Peanut Butter, Rolled Oats, Amaranth, Sunflower Hearts, Apples, Carrots, Flax Seed, Kelp, Beta-Carotene, Green Tea Extract, L-Carnitine, Mixed Tocopherols (natural preservative).

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Dr. Khuly (of Fully Vetted) talks Science Diet

Check out this post..

Great. I'm glad to see that people in the veterinary profession can objectively comment on what they push in their offices.

The logic though... I don't ask my general practitioner about dietary issues, I seek out a nutritionist or holistic specialist. These options also exist for your canine companion.

I think it is best to just say - don't just take the vet's word for it. Do your own research.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Comparison | Acana Pacifica & EVO Herring

Due to the recent sale of Natura to Proctor & Gamble,

I have begun to transition my foster dog to Acana Pacifica.
Here is a side by side comparison (taken directly from each bag label) to show you why I chose this food:

Animal Protein Ingredients:
ACANA PACIFICA, 60%                EVO HERRING/SALMON, 76%
Boneless salmon                                Herring
Salmon meal                                     Salmon meal
Herring meal                                     Herring meal
Whitefish meal                                  Salmon
Salmon oil                                        Eggs
Boneless Herring                              Herring Oil
Boneless Flounder                            Cottage Cheese

Fruit/Vegetable/Carbohydrate/Botanical Ingredients:
Russet Potato                                Peas
Peas                                              Pea Fiber
Sweet Potato                                Sunflower Oil
Sun-Cured Alfalfa                         Apples
Pumpkin                                       Carrots
Turnip Greens                               Dried Chicory Root
Organic Kelp
Juniper Berries
Black Currants
Chicory Root
Licorice Root
Angelica Root
Marigold Flowers
Sweet Fennel
Peppermint Leaf
Chamomile Flowers
Lavender Flowers 
Summer Savory

Vitamin/Mineral/Probiotic Ingredients:
ACANA PACIFICA                               EVO HERRING/SALMON
Vitamins A, D3, E, B5, B6, B12             Vitamins E, A, B12
Niacin                                                     Niacin
Zinc Proteinate                                        Glucosamine Hydrochloride
Thiamine Mononitrate                              Chondroitin Sulfate
Riboflavin                                                Zinc Proteinate
Iron Proteinate                                        Iron Proteinate
Manganese Proteinate                            Copper Proteinate
Copper Proteinate                                 Manganese Proteinate
Folic Acid                                             Calcium Iodate
Biotin                                                    Betaine Hydrocholoride 
Selenium                                               Thiamine Mononitrate 
Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus            Calcium Pantothenate
Dried Enterococcus Faecium                Biotin
                                                           Beta Carotene
                                                          Pyridoxine Hydrochloride
                                                          Folic Acid
                                                         Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus 
                                                         Dried Lactobacillus casei 
                                                        Dried Enterococcus faecium

Select Analysis:
Protein 33%                                    Protein 42%
Fat 18%                                          Fat 18%
Moisture 10%                                 Moisture 10%
Calcium 1.4% min, 1.6% max         Calcium not listed
Phosphorus 1.1% min, 1.3% max   Phosphorus not listed

Enjoy your new ownership, Natura.... 

Friday, May 14, 2010

chews | nylabone alternatives

I'm always looking for alternatives to edible chews like nylabone.
Sample Ingredients (Roast Beef flavor):
Wheat starch, glycerin, Powdered Cellulose, lecithin, potato starch, chicken powder, roast beef flavor, natural bacon flavor, natural flavor, oat fiber, calcium carbonate, soy flour and rosemary oil. Vitamins: Thiamin, Riboflavin, Pantothenic Acid, Vitamin B-6, Folic Acid, Vitamin A, Vitamin E, Biotin, Choline, Inositol and PABA. Minerals: Calcium Carbonate, Ferrous Carbonate, Magnesium Oxide, Dicalcium Phosphate, Potassium Chloride, Sodium Selenite, Calcium Chloride, Zinc Oxide, Copper Oxide, Manganese Oxide and Sodium Molybdate. 

Two of my (aka my foster dog's) favorites:
Zukes Z Ridge

We've tried two varieties, Original Fresh Breath and Cranberry Fresh Breath
Ingredients (original):
Potato Starch, Vegetable Glycerin, Cellulose Fiber, Alfalfa Concentrate (a source of Chlorophyll), Natural Flavor, Lecithin, Whey, Vanilla Extract, Clove Powder, Parsley Powder, Nutmeg Powder and Fennel Seed Powder.
It takes about 10 minutes for pibble Vander to get through a medium Z Ridge

Health Bone Mixed Berry

I actually found these at Petco and was delighted by how great a product this is!
Vander tried the Mixed Berry... ingredients:
Quinoa flour, rice, rice protein concentrate, mixed berries (blueberry, cranberry, cherry), ground flax seed, calcium carbonate, natural flavor, canola oil, mixed tocopherols, rosemary extract, green tea extract.

It took Vander over 45 minutes to get through this bone!!

Response from Natura/P&G

I wrote an email to Natura explaining how much I depended on them for my foster who is combating demodex mange. I told them how saddened I was by their big corporate buy out. I told them I will no longer buy or recommend any of their products.

We've since switched our foster to Acana Pacifica.

I received an email back from them (or P&G rep?) which seems to be the standard response many are getting if they contact Natura/P&G - how disappointing:

----- Original Message -----
From: Customer Service
Sent: Tuesday, May 11, 2010 4:12 PM
Subject: RE: Innova & Evo

Dear Jen,

Thank you for confiding in us and sharing your opinion.

Our dedication to quality and our philosophy has not changed. Natura's Founders; John & Ann Rademakers and Peter Atkins, started their business with the purpose to provide the healthiest pet foods in the world. In building their business they have maintained animal health and wellness as a priority. They have strongly supported their independent retail partners.

Let's take a moment to reflect on that and think about the fact that they would not entrust their legacy to a new owner if they were not convinced that P &G would carry out their product philosophies and quality. P&G is committed to growing the Natura brands and they recognize the critical nature of growing the entire portfolio through the independent pet specialty stores.

We will continue to celebrate and advance Natura's legacy and nutritional philosophy and maintain Natura's current high standards for product and ingredient quality, food safety and manufacturing excellence. We will continue to support the development of a thriving independent pet specialty channel.

I'll leave you with a parting thought…

Did you know P&G is working with the FDA and respected animal welfare groups, such as the Humane Society of the United States, to work on reforming regulations and validating alternative methods to support this?

To learn more about these efforts and other facts, please visit…

http://www.pg. com/animalaltern atives/

www.IamsTruth. com

www.aspca.org/ iams Viewpoint of an independent animal welfare organization

http://www.biorap. org Biological Research for Animals & People

http://altweb. jhsph.edu/ Alternatives to Animal testing site

http://www.hsus. org Humane Society of the United States

http://www.ampef. org/ Americans for Medical Progress Educational Foundation

Thank you once again for confiding in us. We sincerely appreciate your history of support and hope that you will continue to trust our brands and our people. We especially thank you for giving us the opportunity to respond to your concerns.

Your Friend,

Ember, Veterinary Technician

Natura Pet Products

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

depressing... NATURA sells to PROCTOR & GAMBLE

That means Innova, EVO, Karma, California Naturals.. they are all family with Iams now. Ugh. That's all I can say...

Story here.

I'm probably going to email them and let them know why I can't in good conscious buy their products anymore. If you feel you need to do the same: custserv@naturapet.com

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

sweet potato chews

There are a few companies (like this one, and this one) that make sweet potato chews for your dog.
Or you can buy a bag of um fresh, get a really nice slicer cheap on ebay, bake in your oven, and make your own sweet potato chews!

Foster dog Vander likes um, even if they do only last 45 seconds!