Struggling with what to feed! - Page 2 - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
Alternative and Home Cooked Diets A forum for people making their own dog food, using alternative methods or different discussions improving the nutrition of your dog.

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post #11 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-06-2017, 10:18 PM
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I got Bowie at a little over 8 weeks old, his breeder fed him adult NOW and I continued that for a month. Then I switched him to adult Orijen, which he loves. I always add a bit of steamed broccoli to the kibble. A 13lb bag lasts about a month.
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post #12 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-06-2017, 10:50 PM Thread Starter
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I don't know what the breeder feed him. She said it's a raw diet that she gets in bulk at the dog shows. She recommended orijen, so I just bought it. He's eating it ok. Didn't eat a full days requirement today, but pretty close.

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post #13 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2017, 12:44 AM
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Frozen raw is not as expensive as the freeze dried raw, so you might start with that, unless there are reasons you want to avoid raw. Benjamin was doing well on the Nature's Variety Instinct, varying between beef and turkey, for quite some time. Then I switched to Stella and Chewy's because it's a few bucks cheaper. He is getting the Surf and Turf (beef and salmon). Hey, he eats better than I do! When he was a puppy (he's almost 5 now) I consulted with a canine nutritionist, Sabine, who Dave recommends. She created a custom home cooked diet for him, which I dutifully cooked every week as I don't have a large freezer to store things in. Sabine's consultation rates are quite reasonable, I think, and it was worth it to me because at the time I too was feeling overwhelmed about all of the choices, and wanted to give him the best I could afford. I didn't want to deal with feeding home made raw because you have to mess with a lot of yucky ingredients (that was my take on it, I'm sure a lot of people don't mind), but the great thing about Sabine's diets is that you tell her what ingredients you and/or your dog likes, and she will work with that. The diet she created for me consisted of ground beef and turkey, several vegetables, and a vitamin mixture that is specific to your dog, along with some eggs and fruit a few times a week. I stopped using this as his primary diet because, to be honest, I don't much like cooking and I got tired of it. However, if you want to feed your dog really healthy food at minimal cost, I think this is the way to go. Just don't try to do it on your own, because you might be missing some important nutrients which could have a very bad effect in the long run. I actually do cook up this recipe about once a month, and feed it to him for about a week out of the month, which saves me some money. I don't even bother tapering him from one to the other any more, as it doesn't seem to bother him when I switch, but when he was younger I would give him half of that and half of the other food for a few days when I was switching between them.

Anyhoo... all of that is to say, it can be overwhelming at first. However, one thing I've learned is that we are lucky to have so many good choices, and I don't think it matters that much as long as you're picking a good one and your dog likes it. How do you know if it's a good one? Check the Dog Food Adviser website, and choose one that has 5, or at least 4 stars. If the dog likes it and is healthy, you're good! Oh, and try to relax and enjoy the ride. I think I spent too much time worrying and obsessing when he was a puppy.


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post #14 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2017, 12:49 AM
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I forgot to say... he also gets a small amount of kibble (1/4 cup) in the morning. The Taste of the Wild is a good grain free alternative that's a little more affordable than some of the others. He likes the Pacific Stream variety, with smoked salmon as the protein. Not too bad, eh? Keep in mind that my dog is large for a Havanese (23 pounds) -- not fat, just big -- so he is entitled to more calories a day than a little 8 pound dog would eat! Not good for me because it costs me more to feed him, but very good for him because he loves to eat and would be very upset if he only got 1/3 as many calories!
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post #15 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2017, 05:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myownhavanese View Post
I don't know what the breeder feed him. She said it's a raw diet that she gets in bulk at the dog shows. She recommended orijen, so I just bought it. He's eating it ok. Didn't eat a full days requirement today, but pretty close.

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Don't worry about him being a little "off his feed" in the first few days (or longer). This is common with a puppy settling into his new home.

Also, don't be worried if he ends up with loose stools with a drastic change in diet like from frozen commercial raw to Orijens. With any change in dog food, even with adult dogs, you want to do it over a period of SEVERAL days, slowly mixing the new food in. This is to prevent tummy upset for a sudden change in diet. It is even more important for a puppy. Most breeders not sending a puppy home with a supply of the food they were raised on, so that the new owner can transition them slowly.


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post #16 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2017, 06:38 AM
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Kozmo gobbles up his primal rabbit frozen. I mix in the breeders' kibble, about two tablespoons. He loves the food and wolf's it down greedily. He has been on this for two of his fifteen weeks. These raw mini bricks smell delicious, and have greens and blueberries and such as their 15 per cent non-meat. No difference in gummy eyes, but he is biting human mom less and picking up fewer leaves and sticks to chew.
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post #17 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2017, 10:19 AM
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I feed grain free Holistic Selects wet food and kibble with a tablespoon or two of whatever fruits and veggies we are having (he loves them). I rotate different proteins - fish, chicken, duck, turkey. He gets primarily canned - 1/2 can and 1/4 c. kibble a day. I tried freeze dried raw for over a month and could never get Loki's stool to firm up. You have to feed what works for you, your dog, your lifestyle and your pocketbook. The dog food advisor (Dog Food Reviews and Ratings | Dog Food Advisor) rates food so you can judge how they rate against each other.

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post #18 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2017, 10:51 AM
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Primal also comes in raw frozen. Takes no time at all to thaw. You can buy it in pellets or little bricks. Go to their website food calculator. You can easily tell how much to feed and cost of each bag. Some varieties (they offer duck, chicken, beef, salmon, etc.) are more expensive than others so you have to price each individually. I fed Tux (he was 10 weeks when I got him) a primal brick and he gobbled it. I think I fed one meal where I mixed kibble and Primal, but after that it was just Primal. He's eaten it ever since with NO, I repeat NO digestive issues from day one. His bowel movements are few and far between, small, solid, dark. His coat is soft and healthy. He has boundless energy. He is over one year old now. Not too long ago there was a very helpful link to a video of a vet explaining the best to worst foods to feed your pet. I can't remember if it was Dave Gabby or Karen Krandall who posted. You definitely should watch that from beginning to end. You could save a fortune in future vet bills and heartbreak compared to the extra cost for quality food. PS When food is not filled with fillers (grains), it takes much less food to keep your dog in optimal health.
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post #19 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2017, 10:58 AM
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Tux after 9 months of Primal. He was 11 months old in this photo.
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post #20 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-26-2017, 10:15 AM
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Karen,

First, congratulations on the 3rd hav. You had two the last time I was here. Three havs - that's a lot of fun and love!!


I'm wondering what you feed your havs? I've been feeding Charley Origen for years (always soaked) and Charley seemed fine until late winter when he started itching. I tried so many things and finally took him off the Origen and it helped immediately and I temporarily put him back on Organix which is what he was fed at Starborn almost 6 years ago.

But I don't know where to go from here and I'm wondering what you do?

What would you suggest?

Starborn Love Me Good & Plenty (Charley)
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