I thought I had talked about my personal crusade to find a good kibble for Nix, but after going through the posts I realised I hadn’t. To give you an overview of the situation, Nix is almost 10 months old, she’s been with us for 5 months, and she has tried five different kinds of kibble (not counting the special kibble we gave her when her stomach was a bit upset and the one in the Breeder’s kit) in that time. This amounts to having changed her kibble once every month.
The main issues that we have are the following:
- She is very thin (although according to the vet 90% of the dogs are too fat, so we shouldn’t worry too much about it).
- It’s possible that she is allergic too something in the food, as she scratches herself a bit too much.
- Her stool is a bit too loose.
She’s been through the following foods, and in the following order:
Royal Canin German Shepherd Puppy: We started with the kibble following a recommendation by Nix’s breeder. At the time I knew that it was not the best quality food, but I thought it’d be better to follow his recommendation and maybe change her food when she was an adult. What happened in the end is that she scratched quite a lot and after ruling out any parasite-related (e.g. fleas, mites, etc.) cause, the vet recommended trying a different food.
Brit Care Salmon & Potato Grain Free Junior for Large Breeds: We opted for this kibble next, following a recommendation from our local pet store. The main reason they recommended it was that it is grain free and the brand also offered a refund if it upset the dog’s stomach. Nix really liked (and still likes!) this food; however, I became suspicious of the feeding guidelines in the bag. The daily amount was way lower than the one of the previous kibble, and after doing some math and Internet research I reached the conclusion that we were underfeeding Nix. It was nothing major, but I was very upset. We also thought her stool was a bit too loose.
Taste of the Wild: Pacific Stream for Puppies: After my disappointment with Brit Care, I decided to search online for another alternative. I went with Taste of the Wild because they had also a salmon formula and I found a shop that sold it online. Moreover, the ingredients seemed to be of good quality and the dog owners who reviewed it were happy with how it sat with their dogs. We used to mix it with Brit Care the whole time she was eating it. However, we stopped giving it to her for two reasons: first of all, our vet didn’t seem to think it was a very good food, and secondly, Nix enjoyed Brit Care more.
Gosbi Exclusive Puppy Maxi: After giving her Brit Care only for a while, her stool would be okay one day and a bit diarrhoea-like the next. It was pretty unpredictable and nothing major. When we went to the vet after she got worms, the vet recommended switching foods, and we tried Gosbi Exclusive Puppy Maxi. We didn’t go for the grain-free option because it was not available at our local store. As I mentioned in my previous post, I was really upset again when I found that the feeding guidelines were completely wrong and stated that she should have double the daily amount of food than she really should. The main consequence: I lost all trust in the brand and decided to look (yet again) for another food.
Cotecnica Maxima Grain Free Junior: This food was recommended by another local store. We explained all our food-related adventures to the salesman, and he told us to try this one. Unfortunately, so far it hasn’t gone very well. Nix’s stool is pretty loose and sometimes has no shape at all (so it’s very diarrhoea-like).
In terms of her stool, I’d say that the best combination for Nix was either the Royal Canin German Shepherd Puppy or the combination of the Brit Care Salmon and Potato plus Taste of the Wild: Pacific Stream. Gosbi Exclusive also seemed to work for her, although we had bought a small bag and she didn’t eat it for long after the feeding guidelines fiasco.
When it comes to scratching, we saw it diminish with the Brit Care Salmon and Potato, but I’m not sure if it has increased since then. What I do know, though, is that she has had to take antibiotics twice due to this. The vet said that it was similar to juvenile acne, and there was little we could do about it, other than trying to find a food that worked better for her.
We’ll keep on searching and hoping that when she grows older, we’ll get rid of these issues.