Join Date: Dec 2008
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There isn't any problem with adding a bit of Ricotta instead of yogurt. Most add yogurt b/c of small amounts of probiotics, but there isn't any reason not to add a bit of ricotta in, unless of course your dog has issues with fat. With cottage cheese, in particular, watch the salt content if you feed alot of this cheese. You might not want to add it every single meal, tho, b/c your dogs might not eat at all if you don't add it in. I don't like adding anything in all the time. I always try and change foods out.
Having dogs with severe food allergies, I can say it is a good idea to switch foods out and try and make sure they aren't getting the same proteins all the time. Also, it's a good idea to switch brands when you switch foods. The food manufacturers are allowed a HUGE range in which to add minerals (some of the minerals have such a wide varience in how much they can add that it is almost laughable. It is a 'guideline', and favors the manufactures). This is b/c most feed companies go by AAFCO guidelines, which is an organization that is compromised of not only the AAFCO people, but also the food manufacturer themselves, who get a say in the guidelines. Also, the dogs in the trials only have to survive for a few short weeks for it to be deemed 'acceptable'. So, one manufacturer might add a whole lot of copper, but another might not add much at all. If you use only one brand of food, then after years, you do run the chance that a certain nutrient will be overall lacking, or too much.
By the way, there IS another group, called the NRC that publishes scientific studies of required nutrients for dogs, the last update only a few years ago. The really good dog food companies will study this and consider their guidelines, b/c this group is not influeneced by the dog manufacturers in it's study of nutrients needed. In other words, the dog food manufacturer themselves are not allowed input into what NRC says is best. But, the actual food sold does not have to meet the independent NRC guidelines (which is more strict than the AAFCO). The point of the last two paragraphs being that when I was still able to buy kibble, I tried to pick the top manufacturers and I switched meat proteins and companies as well.