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What kind of food?

Species: Dog
Breed: Aussie
Age: 1-2 years
I need a food recommendation for our two Aussies (one mini 5 yr old male at 32lbs and a toy 1 yr old female)at about 12 lbs)Both are fixed. We currently are feeding them Dick Vans Natural Balance (Sweet potato and fish) but it has gotten too expensive as my husband is out of work. No known allergies or food issues. Can you suggest a middle-of-the-road food for them? It is hard to know from the packaging what is best for the dogs. Their current food does not have grains in it so please comment if you think that is of great importance.
Thanks so much!
KK


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

It is often really difficult to know whether a food is a good one or not! You'll read all sorts of stuff online about things like the protein content, whether or not it is grain free, whether there is corn, etc. etc. etc.

Personally I find it extremely hard to read a food label and decide whether or not a food is a good one. What I go by is this,

"In dogs that are fed this food, do they have a nice coat and do they produce regular, solid stools?"

There are three foods that I commonly recommend, in no particular order: Royal Canin, Science Diet and Iams. I find that most dogs on these foods do really well.

I pay no attention to ingredients or protein levels as no one really knows what is optimal. There is no benefit to feeding a sweet potato and fish diet. This was likely created for dogs who have food allergies. If a dog has a food allergy then we need to find a novel protein source (i.e fish) and sometimes a novel carbohydrate source (i.e. sweet potato). But fish and sweet potato themselves are no better than other foods, so there's no point spending extra money on them!

I hope this helps!

Dr. Marie



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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.