The Best Dry Dog Food for Your Pit Bull

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In a previous article, we discussed how to choose a quality commercial dog food for your pit bull. Today, we'll give you our recommendations for the best dry dog foods, including detailed reviews describing why we made the selection.

Dry Dog Food Evaluation Criteria

In order to be selected for our list of the best kibbles for your pit bull, dry dog foods must meet the following criteria:

  • Ingredients must be human-grade. In the case of meat meals, which are obviously not intended for human consumption, the meals should be rendered from high quality, healthy animal tissues, not from meats rejected for human consumption.

  • Foods must be meat-based, not grain-based. Some carbohydrates are unavoidable in dry dog food or the kibble pieces would not retain their shape, but since dogs are carnivores, we're looking for foods that are mostly meat. Ideally, 70% of the food's protein should come from high quality animal sources, not plant sources.

  • Foods must not contain cheap filler ingredients such as brewer's rice, peanut hulls, soybean mill, wheat middlings, corn bran, etc. that are waste products of the human food industry and provide little or no nutritional value.

  • Foods must be preserved naturally and not contain carcinogenic chemical preservatives such as BHT, BHA, and ethoxyquin. If the food contains any type of fish meal--which is required by law to be preserved with ethoxyquin unless the supplier has a special permit allowing them to use a different preservative--the dog food manufacturer must have stipulated that their fish meal supplier has such a permit and that the fish meal used in the food is ethoxyquin free and preserved with natural antioxidants. This is important because dog food companies are not required to list ethoxyquin on the label unless they have added it themselves.

Summary of Dog Food Reviews

Best Dry Dog Food - All-Around Top Pick

Orijen - All Formulas

Orijen Dog FoodWhile most of the dog food companies that made our list produce only a few foods we recommend, in the case of the Canadian super premium brand Orijen, every food from the large breed puppy diet to the senior diet is highly recommended. Orijen understands the concept of biologically appropriate nutrition, and their foods are based on the latest nutritional research. Most senior diets, for instance, are still formulated to contain lower levels of protein and correspondingly higher amounts of carbohydrate, but recent studies tell us that older dogs actually need more quality protein, not less. Orijen Senior is one of the very few foods formulated for older dogs to get this right.

Orijen knows that dogs have neither the digestive tract, nor the enzymes necessary to digest huge amounts of grain. Consequently all Orijen foods contain at least 70% meat, no more than 30% vegetables and fruit, and 0% grain. The idea is to supply dogs with a food that is as close to the diet they evolved on as possible.

All ingredients are human-grade, but Orijen goes a step further by using free-range meats raised without antibiotics and growth hormones. Orijen dry dog foods typically contain five or six different fresh meats and at least four high quality meat and fish meals. And yes, the fish meals are ethoxyquin-free. Orijen pays their supplier a premium to use a blend of vitamin E and botanical extracts to preserve the meals.

Orijen emphasizes the use of fresh, regional ingredients, and all foods contain a large number of herbs and botanicals intended to mimic the natural canine diet. You'll also find probiotics and glucosamine and chondroitin in amounts high enough to do some good as a general preventative (if your dog is on antibiotics or experiencing gastrointestinal problems, you'll probably still want to use a separate probiotics supplement, and in the event of arthritis or other joint conditions, your dog will need more glucosamine and chondroitin than any dog food supplies).

Orijen Adult features the following main ingredients: fresh deboned chicken, chicken meal, turkey meal, russet potato, fresh deboned pacific salmon, herring meal, sweet potato, peas, fresh deboned lake whitefish, fresh deboned northern walleye, and chicken fat (naturally preserved with vitamin E and citric acid).
Minor ingredients include chicken liver, salmon meal, fresh deboned turkey, fresh whole eggs, fresh deboned herring, sun-cured alfalfa, salmon oil, and various vegetables, fruits, kelp, probiotics, and vitamin and mineral supplements. This formula is 40% protein and 16% fat with an omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio of 2.7:1.

The main ingredients in Orijen Regional Red formula are fresh deboned wild boar, fresh deboned lamb, lamb meal, russet potato, fresh deboned pork, peas, salmon meal, whitefish meal (made from flounder, halibut and cod caught wild from the north pacific ocean), herring meal, fresh deboned bison, fresh whole eggs, potato starch, fresh deboned salmon, alfalfa, sweet potato, fresh deboned walleye, and salmon oil (naturally preserved with vitamin E).
Minor ingredients include apples and various berries, vegetables, herbs, probiotics, and vitamins and minerals. This formula is 38% protein and 18% fat with an omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio of 3.75:1.

The main ingredients in Orijen 6 Fish dog food are fresh deboned salmon, salmon meal, herring meal, russet potato, fresh deboned lake whitefish, sweet potato, peas, and salmon oil (preserved with vitamin E).
Minor ingredients include fresh deboned walleye, fresh deboned herring, sun-cured alfalfa, fresh deboned flounder, fresh deboned lake trout, dehydrated organic kelp, and various vegetables, fruits, herbs, probiotics, vitamins, and minerals. This formula is 40% protein and 18% fat with an omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio of 2.5:1, which is excellent.

Also available are Orijen Puppy, Orijen Large Breed Puppy, and Orijen Senior foods. These three formulas are of the same high quality.

What we like about Orijen dry dog foods:

  • Orijen dog foods are 70-75% meat, high in species-appropriate protein, and contain only 18-22% carbohydrate.
  • Each Orijen food contains multiple, high quality protein sources including at least five different types of fresh meat and fish, at least four nutritionally dense meat and fish meals, plus fresh whole eggs (most formulas).
  • All ingredients are fit for human consumption, and meats are free-range and raised without antibiotics and growth hormones.
  • Orijen foods contain 28-35% fresh meats from at least five different sources guaranteeing a superior amino acid profile.
  • Unique low temperature processing at 190 degrees Fahrenheit ensures that more nutrients remain intact.
  • Excellent omega-3 to omega-6 ratios, and omega-3 fatty acids are supplied by fish and fish oil, not vegetable oil.
  • Fish are wild-caught and tested for mercury and other environmental contaminants.
  • No ingredients, including vitamin and mineral supplements, are sourced from China.
  • All Orijen foods are produced entirely in the parent company's own plant in Canada; no part of the manufacturing process is ever farmed out to third parties.
  • Orijen foods do not contain excessive amounts of calcium like some high protein super premium foods.
  • Probiotics, glucosamine, and chondroitin are present in sufficient amounts to be effective (especially in the puppy and senior diets).
  • Neither Orijen foods, nor individual ingredients such as fish meal are preserved with chemicals like BHT, BHA, and ethoxyquin.

If you're looking for the ultimate kibble and can afford the hefty price tag that such quality commands, we can't recommend Orijen foods highly enough. The price for a 29.7 pound bag is typically $62-75, depending on the formula. Keep in mind though that you will need to feed far less of a calorie dense food with high digestibility such as Orijen, so the price difference between a super premium food and a mainstream brand isn't actually as big as it would seem.

You can buy Orijen at PetFoodDirect.com.

Best Moderately Priced Grainless Dry Dog Foods

Acana - Grasslands, Pacifica, and Wild Prairie Formulas

Acana Dog FoodAcana and Orijen are both made by Champion Pet Foods, a family owned and operated boutique pet food manufacturer in Alberta, Canada. Everything you read above about the quality of the ingredients in Orijen foods also applies to Acana. So what's the difference between these two brands?

Acana's Grasslands, Pacifica, and Wild Prairie formulas are also grain-free, but they're slightly higher in carbohydrate (about 28%) and lower in protein (about 33%) than the Orijen foods. They contain three fresh meat/fish sources as opposed to Orijen's five or six and two high quality meat/fish meals instead of Orijen's four. The idea behind the Acana line is to make biologically appropriate canine nutrition more affordable.

Despite the slightly lower price point, these three Acana foods are superb. Grasslands features boneless lamb, lamb meal, salmon meal, herring meal, russet potato, peas, and chicken fat (naturally preserved with vitamin E) as the main ingredients. The minor ingredients are sweet potato, deboned walleye, sun-cured alfalfa, natural lamb flavor, deboned duck, whole eggs, and lots of different veggies, fruits, herbs, probiotics, and vitamin/mineral supplements.

Pacifica consists of 55% fish. The main ingredients are salmon meal, russet potato, peas, fresh boneless salmon, fresh boneless herring, herring meal, pumpkin, fresh boneless flounder, and salmon oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols and rosemary). Also includes a variety of seaweeds, vegetables, fruits, herbs, probiotics, and vitamins and minerals.

Wild Prairie is a chicken and fish formula. The main ingredients are chicken meal, russet potato, deboned chicken, deboned walleye, whitefish meal, peas, and chicken fat (naturally preserved with vitamin E). Minor ingredients include sun-cured alfalfa, chicken liver, deboned Lake Whitefish, whole eggs, salmon oil, and various veggies, fruits, herbs, probiotics, and vitamins and minerals.

All three formulas are 33% protein and 15-17% fat. The omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio is 5.5:1. These Arcana foods are suitable for all life stages. Calcium levels are appropriate for large breed puppies.

Acana Grasslands, Pacifica, and Wild Prairie formulas typically cost $52 for a 29.7 pound bag.

Buy Acana at PetFoodDirect.com.

Taste of the Wild - High Prairie, Pacific Stream, and Wetlands Formulas

Taste of the Wild Dog FoodTaste of the Wild is an all-natural human-grade line featuring wild game meats such as bison, duck, venison, and quail as part of their formulas. All meats are hormone and antibiotic free. The inclusion of small amounts of roasted and smoked meats as "taste enhancers" ensures that dogs go wild over Taste of the Wild.

We also like the use of sweet potato as the main carbohydrate source. Despite the name and the sweet taste, sweet potatoes have a lower glycemic index than regular potatoes. They are also more nutritious, providing especially high levels of valuable antioxidants.

Taste of the Wild makes three excellent grain free formulas. High Prairie features bison, lamb meal, chicken meal, egg product, sweet potatoes, peas, potatoes, and canola oil as the main ingredients. Minor ingredients include roasted bison, roasted venison, natural flavor, tomato pomace, ocean fish meal, salt, tomatoes, blueberries, raspberries, plus probiotics, prebiotics, and complete vitamins and minerals. This food is 32% protein and 18% fat with an omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio of 9.3:1, which is not great. You may want to add a couple of fish oil caps to your dog's diet when feeding this kibble.

Pacific Stream is a fish recipe that's much lower in protein and higher in carbohydrate than most grainless foods. This is done to keep the price down since salmon is expensive. The main ingredients are salmon, ocean fish meal, sweet potatoes, potatoes, and canola oil. Other ingredients include salmon meal, smoked salmon, potato fiber, natural flavor, salt, tomatoes, blueberries, raspberries, plus probiotics, prebiotics, and vitamin and mineral supplements. This food is 25% protein and 15% fat. The omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio is 8:1.

The main ingredients in Wetlands are duck, duck meal, chicken meal, egg product, sweet potatoes, peas, and chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols). Secondary ingredients include potatoes, roasted quail, roasted duck, smoked turkey, natural flavor, tomato pomace, ocean fish meal, tomatoes, blueberries, raspberries, plus probiotics, prebiotics, and vitamin and mineral supplements. This food is 32% protein and 18% fat. The omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio is 6:1.

Until very recently, the ocean fish meal found in all three formulas came from a supplier who uses ethoxyquin. The company switched to a naturally preserved fish meal source in May 2010. Taste of the Wild has confirmed to us that all foods with an expiration date of June 2011 or later contain fish meal that is preserved only with mixed tocopherols (vitamin E).

A 30 pound bag of Taste of the Wild grainless dry dog food typically costs $46-48.

Buy Taste of the Wild at PetFoodDirect.com.

CANIDAE - Grain Free Salmon and Grain Free All Life Stages Formulas

Canidae Dog FoodCANIDAE is another super premium brand featuring human-grade ingredients and meats raised without hormones and antibiotics. Their fish meal is now preserved with Naturox, a natural antioxidant blend.

Due to the growing demand for more species-appropriate canine nutrition, CANIDAE has created two high protein/low carbohydrate grainless formulas. 80% of the protein in CANIDAE's Grain Free Salmon and ALS foods is derived from meat or fish. The remaining 20% comes from fruit and vegetable sources.

Grain Free Salmon is 40% protein and 20% fat, making it most appropriate for active dogs. This food is less than 20% carbohydrate, which is oustanding and comparable to the Orijen formulas. The main ingredients are salmon meal, potatoes, potato protein, ocean fish meal (made from middle ocean swimming herring and menhaden fish), and canola oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols). Minor ingredients include peas, tomato pomace, sun-cured alfalfa meal, lecithin, a few herbal extracts, cranberries, sunflower oil, probiotics, prebiotics, digestive enzymes, and vitamin and mineral supplements. The omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio of this kibble is a very respectable 3.7:1.

The Grain Free All Life Stages formula features chicken meal, turkey meal, fresh lamb, potatoes, peas, and chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols) as the main ingredients. The minor ingredients are lamb meal, ocean fish meal (made from herring and menhaden fish), tomato pomace, sun-cured alfalfa meal, lecithin, a few herbal extracts, cranberries, sunflower oil, probiotics, prebiotics, digestive enzymes, and vitamin/mineral supplements. This food is 34% protein and 18% fat. The omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio is 7.4:1.

Both foods are appropriate for all life stages, and calcium levels are suitable for large breed puppies. All CANIDAE products undergo extensive food safety audits. Every batch of food is tested for melamine, cyanuric acid, salmonella, and numerous other toxins and bacteria. The company has a good safety record, and their foods have not been involved in the recalls of recent years.

A 30 pound bag of CANIDAE Grain Free food usually costs about $50 for the ALS formula and $56 for the Salmon formula. Currently, however, these foods can be found on sale for $46 and $52 respectively. CANIDAE Grain Free Salmon is the lowest priced super low carb kibble on the market (as of June 2010).

Buy Canidae Grain-Free foods at PetFoodDirect.com.

Best Dry Dog Food Weight Loss Formula

Wellness - CORE Reduced Fat Recipe

Wellness CORE dog foodWellness is a super premium brand offering quality human-grade ingredients and hormone-free meats. The CORE formulas are grain-free and high in species-appropriate proteins. CORE comes in three varieties: Original Recipe, Ocean Recipe, and Reduced Fat Recipe. The latter is particularly interesting, since most dog foods formulated for overweight dogs contain abysmal ingredients. While Wellness CORE Reduced Fat Recipe is slightly higher in fiber than the other CORE varieties, you won't find worthless fillers like rice hulls in this food. The reduced caloric value is primarily the result of using lower fat meats and less vegetable oil.

CORE Reduced Fat Recipe has the following main ingredients: deboned turkey, turkey meal, chicken meal, potatoes, dried ground potatoes, pea fiber, whitefish meal, tomato pomace, natural chicken flavor, chicken liver, and salmon oil. Other ingredients include flaxseed, various vegetables and fruits, probiotics, prebiotics, glucosamine and chondroitin, and vitamins and minerals. This food is 33% protein and only 9% fat with an omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio of 4.4:1.

The two other CORE varieties are also recommended. CORE Original Recipe features deboned turkey, deboned chicken, turkey meal, chicken meal, potatoes, dried ground potato, tomato pomace, natural chicken flavor, and canola oil as the main ingredients. The minor ingredients are chicken liver, salmon oil, flaxseed, various vegetables and fruits, probiotics, prebiotics, glucosamine and chondroitin, and vitamins/minerals. This food is 34% protein and 14% fat with an omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio of 4.6:1.

The main ingredients in CORE Ocean Recipe are whitefish, whitefish meal, salmon meal, menhaden fish meal, potatoes, dried ground potato, and canola oil. Secondary ingredients include pea fiber, tomato pomace, natural fish flavor, flaxseed, various vegetables and fruits, probiotics, prebiotics, glucosamine and chondroitin, and vitamins/minerals. This food is 34% protein and 14% fat with an omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio of 2.5:1.

The glucosamine and chondroitin levels in these formulas are too low to do any good. Also, CORE foods are too high in calcium to make them suitable for pit bull puppies under 12 months of age. These are, however, fine foods for adult pit bulls.

The regular price for CORE Reduced Fat Recipe is about $65-67 for a 26 pound bag, but it's frequently on sale for $57. CORE Ocean Recipe is the most pricey at $70-73 for a 26 pound bag (sale price is around $63), and CORE Original Recipe is usually $62-64 for a 26 pound bag (on sale for $55).

Buy Wellness CORE Reduced Fat.

Best Single Meat Source Dry Dog Food

Canine Caviar - Venison and Split Pea

Canine Caviar Dog FoodIf your pit bull suffers from food allergies, you'll probably want to feed a single meat source food, and Canine Caviar makes a formula that's tough to beat. The main ingredient in this 100% human-grade grainless food is free-range New Zealand venison raised without hormones, antibiotics, and pesticides. This excellent kibble even contains venison tripe, and is guaranteed to include no genetically modified ingredients (GMO). Digestibility is an outstanding 91-93%.

But what really makes this Canine Caviar formula unique is the processing method. Venison and Split Pea kibble is cooked for only six seconds, ensuring that nutrients remain largely intact!

The main ingredients in the minimally processed Venison and Split Pea formula are, as the name suggests, venison meal, split pea, and canola oil. Other ingredients include dried pumpkin, whole ground flaxseed, sun-cured alfalfa, venison tripe, dried beet pulp, coconut oil, borage oil, primrose oil, sun-cured kelp, lecithin, whole clove garlic, and several other herbs, plus vitamin and mineral supplements.

This food is 34% protein and 20% fat with the highest omega-3 levels (2.7%) of any kibble we've seen. The omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio is an amazing 1.5:1. Better yet, the inclusion of borage oil and primrose oil means that much of the omega-6 fatty acids are in the form of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), which is superb. The excellent fatty acid profile of this food makes it a great choice for dogs with skin conditions, allergies, or arthritis.

If this Canine Caviar formula has any drawback, it's the price. A 30 pound bag typically costs $82-86, making this the most expensive kibble we've reviewed.

Buy Canine Caviar Venison and Split Pea food.

Best Affordable Dry Dog Food

Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul - Adult Dog Formula

Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul foodGrainless kibbles are great, but they're also expensive. If you're looking for a lower priced, high quality dry dog food and don't mind the inclusion of some whole grains, take a look at the Adult Dog Formula from Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul.

Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul uses human-grade ingredients and meats raised without hormones and antibiotics in their foods. The top ingredients in the Adult Dog Formula are chicken, turkey, chicken meal, ocean fish meal, cracked pearled barley, whole grain brown rice, oatmeal, millet, white rice, and chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols). Minor ingredients include potatoes, egg product, tomato pomace, duck, salmon, flaxseed, various fruits and veggies, kelp, probiotics, prebiotics, and the usual vitamin and mineral supplements. This food is 24% protein and 14% fat with an omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio of 5.5:1.

Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul also makes a good large breed puppy formula.

This brand is made by Diamond Pet Foods, a company that has used ethoxyquin-preserved fish meal in the past, but switched to natural antioxidant preservation in May 2010. Kibble bags with an expiration date of May 15, 2011 or later are said to be ethoxyquin-free.

A 35 pound bag typically costs $39.99, making this quality dry dog food more affordable than our grainless recommendations.

Buy Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul.

Other Excellent Dry Dog Foods

Horizon Legacy Grain Free is another superb Canadian food made by a small company in their own processing plant using fresh, human-grade ingredients. Horizon Legacy Grain Free is available as an Adult Formula and a Puppy Formula. Based on the ancestral canine diet, both formulas are high in protein, moderate in fat, and low in carbohydrate. What makes these foods different from most other grainless kibbles is that they contain no potatoes, making them a great choice for dogs who don't do well with potato products in their diet. The main ingredients in Horizon Legacy Grain Free Adult Formula are fresh chicken meat, chicken meal, salmon meal, turkey meal, pea starch concentrate, green split peas, and chicken fat. Also includes whole eggs, salmon oil, and lots of herbs, vegetables, fruits, and probiotics.

Surf & Turf by Fromm Four Star Nutritionals is a high quality, human-grade salmon and duck food made without grain. Its main ingredients are salmon, duck meal, potatoes, pea flour, sweet potatoes, duck, and chicken fat. Meats are hormone and antibiotic free, and the fish meal the company uses is guaranteed not to be preserved with ethoxyquin. Surf & Turf is made in Fromm's own USDA-inspected plant in Wisconsin.

We also like the Now! Grain Free line from Petcurean. These foods are unique in that they contain no rendered meats (such as meat meals) whatsoever. All ingredients are human-grade and meats are fresh and hormone-free. The absence of meat meals means that Now! Grain Free kibbles can contain no more than 35% meat; fresh fruits and veggies make up the remainder of the food. Consequently these kibbles are moderate in protein and fat and somewhat higher in carbohydrate than most other grainless foods; however, the ingredients in this naturally preserved dog food line are excellent.

Another line worth mentioning is Wilderness by Blue Buffalo. This grainless, human-grade food comes in three varieties: Chicken Recipe (main ingredients: deboned chicken, chicken meal, potato starch, turkey meal, peas, and chicken fat), Duck Recipe (main ingredients: deboned duck, chicken meal, potato starch, turkey meal, peas, and chicken fat), and Salmon Recipe (main ingredients: deboned salmon, menhaden fish meal, chicken meal, potato starch, peas, and chicken fat).

Solid Gold is another brand that recently switched to ethoxyquin-free fish meal. We like their super high protein, low carbohydrate Barking At The Moon formula, which is grainless and features ocean fish meal, hormone-free beef, potatoes, potato protein, and canola oil as the main ingredients. With 41% protein and 20% fat, it's most suitable for active dogs. If you're looking for a Solid Gold food that's lower in fat, take a look at the Wolfking formula. This bison-based food does contain some whole grains, but they're all gluten-free, and it's only 9% fat. The main ingredients are bison, ocean fish meal, brown rice, potatoes, sweet potatoes, millet, rice bran, and canola oil.

Special Note about EVO and Natura Pet Products

EVO, a high protein/high fat/low carbohydrate line of human-grade grainless dog foods made by Natura Pet Products, would be right behind Orijen on our recommended list if it wasn't for two issues. The first is that the high calcium content in these foods makes EVO unsuitable for puppies under the age of twelve months. The second, far bigger issue is that Natura Pet Products (makers of EVO, Innova, California Natural, HealthWise, and Karma Organic brands--all high quality natural dog foods made with human-grade ingredients) has just been sold to Procter & Gamble. Given what happened to Iams and Eukanuba after they were acquired by P&G, people feeding Natura products are justifiably concerned.

Many people believe that it's only a matter of time before P&G begins cutting corners in an effort to reduce costs and maximize profits. The worst is that these changes may not be immediately apparent. Here's the thing: The term "human-grade" has no legal meaning. It really comes down to the credibility of the manufacturer whether we believe them when they tell us that the ingredients they use are fit for human consumption, or that their fish meal isn't preserved with ethoxyquin, or that they don't import anything from China. Even more alarming is the fact that pet food manufacturers have six months to update their product labels after changing the food's formulation.

With Procter & Gamble now in charge of all Natura brands, it's up to you to decide if these are foods you still feel comfortable feeding your pit bull.

All of the food featured here can be found at PetFoodDirect.com.

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72 comments

Comments

4everlow's picture
4everlow
Mon, 06/28/2010 - 8:46pm

My 3 Pitties love the Chicken Soup dry food, and their stool is always firm, I like the first 2 ingredients are a meat and not corn meal or fillers. Price is fair some other name brand foods don't even have a meat product as their first ingredient.

littledogwalker's picture
littledogwalker
Fri, 07/02/2010 - 9:26am

Good info. I feed my dogs Innova, and they have done very well on this food, but with the company change, I think I might change their food. Don't want to take any chances with bad nutrition!! I have 3 large breed dogs, and worry about hip problems. Can you suggest a good food for large breed adult dogs?

matt's picture
matt
Fri, 07/02/2010 - 9:29am

Orijen Adult would be the best. For a lower-priced alternative, try Canidae Grain Free All Life Stages.

mhaze's picture
mhaze
Mon, 07/12/2010 - 4:58pm

Interesting and good to know about EVO. I too have been using it, but didn't know about the recent change.

Maybelline64's picture
Maybelline64
Tue, 07/13/2010 - 11:08am

I use Orijen for my girl Maybelline, I switched from Eagle Pack Holistic Select. She LOVES the Orijen, we were feeding about 5 cups of the Eagle Pack per day, divided into a morning meal and an evening meal. On the Orijen she eats only 2 cups per day, we offer 2 in the morning and 2 in the evening, but she will only eat 2 and save the rest for her next meal. It is pricey but I have tried the Science Diet and Iams route,always with disappointing results. When she was a pup, she and her sister had a very pronounced knuckling over problem, and that was on Iams. I immediately switched to Eagle Pack and the problem went away literally in 3 days. I'm interested in why you didn't review this food, I have a Jack and a Greyhound still on this brand, and they are doing really well. I can't say enough good things about Orijen dog food, as someone that rescued their first Pitty at 13, and has had them since then ( 46 yo now) I can't imagine being owned by another breed or feeding any other food, we are blessed that we can afford to feed her this, it is an amazing dog food.

matt's picture
matt
Tue, 07/13/2010 - 11:14am

Most of Eagle Pack's recipes have large amounts of rice and corn, while still having a more premium price tag.

Corn is a big no-no when feeding dogs.

Glad you have success with it, because it certainly has far less corn than most of the normal commercial dog food out there.

Maybelline64's picture
Maybelline64
Tue, 07/13/2010 - 11:54am

So would you recommend Chicken Soup for the Dog Lovers Soul instead of Eagle Pack?

matt's picture
matt
Tue, 07/13/2010 - 11:57am

Yes. Chicken Soup has rice and other grains, but they are high quality, and they don't include any corn.

Maybelline64's picture
Maybelline64
Thu, 07/15/2010 - 11:20am

Ok, so I bought CSFTDLS and I can't keep my dogs out of it. Even my Pitty Maybelline has tried to break in the bag; she has never been this enthusiastic about food. We have decided that after we finish all of the Orijen, Holistic Select, and Purina that came with our current foster, we will be putting all of the dogs on the Chicken Soup adult large breed. I would have seen the name and said no way, but decided to try it due to this review.....This is an extremely palatable food and they all go nuts for it, we will keep a little kibble in pockets for training aids, and a baggie in our vehicles with the leash and water for stray rescue opportunities. Reviews like this are so very helpful, I'm glad that I joined, and love this site. A big THANKS to you Matt!

matt's picture
matt
Thu, 07/15/2010 - 11:28am

Glad to hear it, Maybelline.

MARY MARINEAU's picture
MARY MARINEAU
Thu, 07/15/2010 - 11:33am

Matt do they make it for puppies too?

matt's picture
matt
Thu, 07/15/2010 - 11:38am

As a matter of fact, they do.

Chicken Soup for the Puppy Lover's Soul

MARY MARINEAU's picture
MARY MARINEAU
Thu, 07/15/2010 - 12:06pm

Matt? Is purina Alpo good for my bullies that is what I am feeding now. Before i was feeding them beneful and my bullie vida was losing her hair and when i took her to get groomed at petco they told me the reason why that was happening to her was because she was having a neg reaction to it and i needed to change her food which i did now her fur is back and looking healthy, but she can't stop scratching,and now her pup is having the same reaction losing fur aroung her tail and scratching alot is it the food i am feeding them or could it be something else. what do you think, please let me know ok so i can get them the proper food that won't break my wallet,or make them sick.

matt's picture
matt
Thu, 07/15/2010 - 12:12pm

Both Beneful and Alpo are mostly corn, and not very good for dogs at all.

The best moderately priced food is the Chicken Soup brand.

http://www.pitbulls.org/article/choosing-quality-dog-food

MARY MARINEAU's picture
MARY MARINEAU
Thu, 07/15/2010 - 12:24pm

Can I get that at petco? That is where i go

matt's picture
matt
Thu, 07/15/2010 - 12:49pm

Doesn't look like petco carries it. But you can get pretty much anything online. And if you buy enough, you can get free shipping with it. Petfooddirect even offers a regular mail order program. It works great.

MARY MARINEAU's picture
MARY MARINEAU
Thu, 07/15/2010 - 12:53pm

thank you will do that ASAP

MARY MARINEAU's picture
MARY MARINEAU
Thu, 07/15/2010 - 12:52pm

Matt one more question, my bullie is so scared of the tub I can't give her a bath without having to hold her down don't like doing it because her eyes get all red her breathing is so fast and scary but she doesn't bite me but she does fight me when it's bath time. The tub can be empty and she will still have a fit. got the spray on waterless shampoo she runs from that to don't like spray bottles but don't mind chewing them up but can;t spray her she runs,need help with bathing her tired of being the taking the bath.

Armywife_Barrett's picture
Armywife_Barrett
Tue, 08/31/2010 - 11:15pm

I had a pitbull/lab mix that was so afraid of the bath that he'd pee if I took him near it. I started small. He was very treat motivated, so I would put a few treats on the floor near the tub and just let him help himself when he was ready. When he was confident with that I moved on to being in the bathroom with him and treating him. Next I put the treats on the edge of the tub with me not there. Then treats on the tub edge with me there. Then treats in the tub without me. Once he got into the tub, I started putting the treats in with me in the room. Then I treated him while touching the water knobs, then with water trickling, then water running. Jericho was great in the tub after that. I'd give him 2 or 3 treats throughout the bath and never had to hold him. Mind you, this took a LOT of time and patience (several weeks without a bath). You have to go at your dogs pace.

Basically, your dog associates the bathtub with you holding her down. She may see this as you forcing her to submit as if she's done something wrong. And you feel badly about this and she picks up on it which makes her even more nervous.

Another thing; when she panics do her feet slip? Try putting a mat down in the tub for her to stand on. Dogs don't like not having sure footing. It might make her feel more comfortable.

Let me know if any of that helps. :) Or if you have any questions. I'd be glad to work out a step by step plan with you. I trained raccoons, bobcats, hyenas, pigs, sheep, and many other animals using step processes like this. The key is to set them up to succeed, and ALWAYS praise the good stuff (and if possible, ignore the bad.)

MARY MARINEAU's picture
MARY MARINEAU
Tue, 09/07/2010 - 12:33am

sorry it took me so long to respond but i will try what you are suggesting an i always have a mat in the tub,she is scared of hoses ,bottles that spray,showers at beaches not just the tub. but i will try everything you suggest. thank you, mary

Capone725's picture
Capone725
Sun, 06/19/2011 - 1:13pm

Hey, I have been researching for top dog foods for a few months and came across some
information on this chicken soup brand and found out that their manufacturer Diamond Pet Foods has a bad history of contaminated foods for dogs and cats. A 2005 consumer alert states that over 100 canine and at least one feline fatality have been linked to Diamond Pet Foods according to Cornell University veterinarians.

amstaff adict's picture
amstaff adict
Mon, 06/20/2011 - 12:14pm

I have also read that and try to stay away from diamond anything. if it has diamond brand on the bag i won't even consider it.

jenrosales's picture
jenrosales
Thu, 07/15/2010 - 12:16pm

Hey Mary have you tried looking for food that is made specially for dogs with food allergies?...and they could also be loosing fur do to stress...

MARY MARINEAU's picture
MARY MARINEAU
Thu, 07/15/2010 - 12:27pm

Vida is one very happy dog always jumping and playing and chasing my son no stress that i no of or can see

kvgraphik's picture
kvgraphik
Fri, 07/16/2010 - 8:40pm

I'm curious now, what do you guys know and/or think of Nature's Select Food? I've been ordering from them for a while now because they seem to be along the lines of what you guys are suggesting for a dog's digestive system, but since they didn't make it on your list, I'm wondering if they're as good as I'd hoped. Please advise. If you need to look them up, they're at www.delivermypetfood.com

Thanks,

Karin V.

matt's picture
matt
Fri, 07/16/2010 - 9:11pm

Their Chicken, Beef, Salmon & Sunflower Oil formula seems pretty decent, but the other formulas still have heavy amounts of rice (it's the second ingredient). It's better if the first 2 or 3 ingredients are some kind of meat.

charlie_elize's picture
charlie_elize
Fri, 07/16/2010 - 10:11pm

I have been feeding my two pits the regular Blue Buffalo Chicken dog food the Life Preotection Formula, and mixing it with the wet canned food (my spoiled babies wont eat the dry food by itself) It says on the bag that it has whole grains in it. Is that OK or should I switch to the Wilderness formula?

MARY MARINEAU's picture
MARY MARINEAU
Tue, 09/07/2010 - 12:27am

they put charcoal in there dog food,not natural!!!!!!!!!

scrmonster90's picture
scrmonster90
Thu, 07/29/2010 - 12:29am

My mom uses Taste of the Wild for her dogs & her pups have the runs often? This is the reason I've never tried that brand. I figured it was probably too rich for them?...

I've used Nature's recipe for my boy & girl. From looking them up, after reading your other article "choosing a quality dog food", I'll be trying Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul. It's good to hear that with a better quality, not at much food will be needed. I have 2 puppers, 60 & 70 pounds. They are able to EAT.

Thanks for your articles!

MARY MARINEAU's picture
MARY MARINEAU
Thu, 07/29/2010 - 2:51am

I to am switching the dog food that i am feeding to my bullies,instead of ALPO i am going to try Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul. Hopefully this will help my bullies,because all they do is scratch all the time. My 2yr old bullie had the same issue, Then i changed her food and her fur grew back ,now she is scratching again just like her pup i just hope this food helps.It's all natural sound real good to me.

Shadow Girl's picture
Shadow Girl
Sun, 08/22/2010 - 6:35am

Thank you so much for all the information. We have been trying to decide on a quality food for our dog, and this article has been a huge help!

Chelsea and Jon's picture
Chelsea and Jon
Wed, 08/25/2010 - 6:36pm

My dog, J, is bored with Chicken Soup for the Dog Lovers Soul. I have fed him csftdls since he was a puppy. Now I think its time for a change. Especially because he has allergies and doesn't do well on grain. Is anyone familiar with Great Life? I am interested in the Grain Free Buffalo. Anyone have any experiences or info about it? Thanks :)

rucadog81's picture
rucadog81
Thu, 08/26/2010 - 7:41pm

So if csftdls is made by Diamond how is the plain Diamond brand beef and rice or their other formulas?

Bmorelovin's picture
Bmorelovin
Wed, 09/01/2010 - 9:13pm

It is so good to see a website that is up to date and actually knows something accurate about dog food!!!!!!

matt's picture
matt
Wed, 09/01/2010 - 9:28pm

Thanks for the kind words. We try :)

MARY MARINEAU's picture
MARY MARINEAU
Tue, 09/07/2010 - 12:26am

went to buy some blue buffalo an found out that they put charcoal in their dog food not good or natural they lied about usin all natural products, charcoal is not natural it's made!!! our pitties should not have to eat what we use inside our grill!!!!!!!!!!!!!

matt's picture
matt
Tue, 09/07/2010 - 8:48am

Mary,

Activated charcoal is in fact a good thing for some dogs to have. It can help with diarrhea, indigestion, excessive gas, and other stomach or colon problems.

It can also absorb harmful metals and poisons from the body, rendering them harmless.

In other words, this is not the exact same charcoal that you use on the grill. It is actually a naturally occurring substance in some cases.

But anyway, the Wilderness line by Blue Buffalo doesn't contain any charcoal.

BigRedTJ's picture
BigRedTJ
Tue, 09/07/2010 - 7:37am

I feed the RAW diet and haven't looked back....

BamaGriz's picture
BamaGriz
Fri, 09/10/2010 - 11:09pm

Primarily because of my blue pit we've dealt with skin/scratching issues for years. It was not until we got away from the grain foods that we started to see improvement. We still have some seasonal problems but even they are nothing like they used to be.

After many tries we discovered Taste of the Wild (TOTW) several months ago. We were on Blue Buffalo (regular & Wilderness) but based on readings elsewhere I researched for something else and discovered TOTW.

Upon my first purchase, before I had the sealed Bison bag open my bullies became very interested. When I opened the bag the smell was almost overpowering. It was a very good smell, almost like real cooked meat. Smelled good enough to eat... for me, not the dogs. Admittedly that may have no real meaning as far actual health benefits in the food. But so many dry foods have no smell to me and TOTW at least is inviting.

And all three of our dogs, including the very finicky eater and the slow eater, attack TOTW. We've tried all three for variety and they devour them all rapidly.

Their bowel movements are regular and healthy-looking.

We are very pleased.

Thanks for this sites confirmation on TOTW.

fenixera's picture
fenixera
Mon, 09/20/2010 - 5:55pm

-Думаю, что это все,- в теле ощущалась определенная сытость, хотя я не знала сколько еще смогу выпить крови, тем не менее жажда, обжигающая мое горло, стала почти не уловимой Однако я знала, теперь она будет неотъемлемой частью этой жизни и тем самым ухудшать ее

Krishanda's picture
Krishanda
Mon, 09/20/2010 - 6:36pm

I have two pits and my 5 year old has had skin problems for years and now my 2 year old is showing some of the same signs, Ive been in and out of vets multiple times had skin scrapings, tests and treatments such as a lyme dip, prednisone etc. I cant even name it all and nothing has worked. They are eating Science Diet Lamb and Rice because that is what the vet recommended and Ive noticed no change. Im wondering if anyone else has had an experience like this and what they did? I have a friend with a boxer who switched to raw chicken but he seems pretty skinny now. Is it the grains and corn they tend to be allergic to?

mybabyphilly's picture
mybabyphilly
Tue, 12/14/2010 - 10:59am

Our girl has awful skin issues too we did all the tests scrapping and all. She ended up on the same meds as yours. Our vet tested a scraping for this weird type of mites that isn't something alot of vets think of checking for. I am trying to remember what they are but I guess it is something all dogs are born with but don’t seem to have active unless for some reason their immune system is comprised. I do know the treatment is Ivermectin it is a liquid given once a day for a month then skin is checked again. We also took her off wheat and chicken products altogether went with fish and sweet potato by Blue Buffalo her skin is so much better and she has alot more energy.

jennifer Martin's picture
jennifer Martin
Thu, 09/23/2010 - 9:56am

Just stumbled upon this site when looking for the right food to feed a new beagle. (sorry no pitbulls in the house!) This is a great resource for dog owners in general!

Matt, I've heard that a raw food diet can help with PEOPLE's allergies to dogs. What do you know about this? My guess is that if you cut out the fillers, like corn and rice, the dog's dander is less irritating. Any ideas on this?

savvyraven's picture
savvyraven
Sat, 10/23/2010 - 7:16pm

I don't think this was mentioned earlier, if so, I apologize. Something to keep in mind for dog food ingredients, they do not list them in order of most abundant like human food, it goes by weight. So if a meat is listed first, it's not actually the main ingredient in the food. Just that it weighs more. Look more at the percentages. Of course, look at the ingredients to find the best of what it has to offer, but just keep it in the back of your mind. One other thing to watch is "all life stages" is not the greatest either. The best diets are the ones that are geared for the age of your pet. If it's all stages, they may be getting more of some things and not enough of others depending on their age and lifestyle. :)

Kardz1981's picture
Kardz1981
Fri, 10/29/2010 - 10:49pm

I just got my mixed pitbull puppies home. But is it normal that they slept for 2 hours after they ate then i gave them a bath and they ate and fell sleep again. They are 1 month old.

MikeCT01's picture
MikeCT01
Wed, 11/03/2010 - 10:45am

I have 3 pits (all under 3 years of age) and a yellow/lab/shep mix and I feed them all Nutrish (alternating between the chicken and beef). I've tried the Blue Buffalo, waaayyy too expensive and then I tried the Chick Soup... and they would barely eat it. They all love Nutrish, and they actually poop less; all are nice and healthy and it's very affordable.

mtowle2's picture
mtowle2
Wed, 11/03/2010 - 1:53pm

any opinions on Merrick Wilderness blend? My pit Bella has been eating it for a few years - seems ok. She tends to get all gassy with Chicken based foods. Also, she's "wheelchair" bound so we have to watch her fiber intake - find the right balance to avoid "accidents". She also suffers from really dry skin issues - we're testing her out for seasonal allergies - but, i'm wondering if there are foods that would help balance that out more. thoughts? And, thanks for any help you can offer

mybabyphilly's picture
mybabyphilly
Tue, 12/14/2010 - 10:43am

Our girl had really bad skin allergy issues we changed her to Blue Buffalo fish and sweet potato and got way from chicken all together seems lamb and duck (weird) but her skin cleared up, she didn't need to eat as much to be full and was a whole new girl. She was a stray so we didn't know anything about her and this worked vet said no wheat. I just want to thank you for keeping a wheel chair bound pit alot of people wouldn't bother goes to show a great owner and great dog.

nashay1234's picture
nashay1234
Sat, 11/06/2010 - 11:03pm

My Pit Sam Like any and all food (lol) we feed him Ole roy. he really likes it

Yaminpix's picture
Yaminpix
Tue, 11/16/2010 - 2:06pm

I am a student and I don't have the money to spend on expensive brands or shipping costs, and I live in an apartment which makes package delivery a huge hassle. I need a good food I can buy from the store. Petco, meijer, kroger, I'm doing what I can. Any suggestions for the better foods I can purchase there? Thanks!

mybabyphilly's picture
mybabyphilly
Tue, 12/14/2010 - 10:35am

Petco sells Blue Buffalo and it is amazing Petsmart also carry it. It goes on sale alot of the time. I have found because it's such a good food it lasts a long time. We have a 45 pound girl and she eats 1 1/4 cup twice a day we started with a cup but as she got healthier we bumped it up per the vet. We buy a 30 pound bag costs a little over $50 when not on sale, lasts us over a month. Good luck any food without wheat seems to be best again according to the vet.

Vanilla's_Daddy's picture
Vanilla's_Daddy
Tue, 12/14/2010 - 3:24pm

YES they do! I’d heard about Blue Buffalo on this very board!

We were at Petsmart the day we adopted our little girl and got two bags.
They were on special with the card for around $42.00

Vanilla was a shelter dog and is currently about 10 pounds underweight. I want the weight she gains to be healthy!

My Wife works at the shelter so I’m there often, I guess one time too many! ;-)
When I told the shelter Director what I bought for Vanilla, she nodded in approval and said “You got the good stuff.”
Sadly the shelter is funded totally by donations so they have to feed whatever they get but it was nice to get confirmation that I had bought good food.

jsant008's picture
jsant008
Wed, 04/13/2011 - 12:43pm

does anyone know about Diamond: Large Breed Puppy: lamb and rice formula? that is what i feed my Balou and it seems to be doing great. just looking for any advice...

jsant008's picture
jsant008
Wed, 04/13/2011 - 12:43pm

does anyone know about Diamond: Large Breed Puppy: lamb and rice formula? that is what i feed my Balou and it seems to be doing great. just looking for any advice...

Katara.Love.2010's picture
Katara.Love.2010
Wed, 11/24/2010 - 11:21am

Blue Buffalo is amazing! My dog has more defined muscles, a shiny coat, and tons of energy. It is reasonably priced and works great.

southern_pit79's picture
southern_pit79
Fri, 05/27/2011 - 12:59pm

LOL it gives Layla the worst gas and makes her burp like crazy!! =))

mybabyphilly's picture
mybabyphilly
Tue, 12/14/2010 - 10:28am

My girl was a stray and she has awful allergies. I went into the pet store as a new owner and Blue Buffalo fish and sweet potato was recommend by another owner with the same problems. It was a miracle with her once she was off wheat and on this her hair grew back and her energy was amazing she was a brand new dog. We can't find the fish version of the Wilderness in any of our stores but are still looking. I recommend Blue Buffalo for sure.

PittieLover4's picture
PittieLover4
Mon, 03/28/2011 - 9:26pm

My dogs eat Blue Buffalo. They love it and it's gluten free (so if my 2 year old eats it then he won't get a rash from it!!!) 

daroc211's picture
daroc211
Mon, 03/28/2011 - 11:08pm

I feed both mine Wellness

jsant008's picture
jsant008
Wed, 04/13/2011 - 12:40pm

Does anyone know much about the Diamond brand dry kibble. The large breed puppy formula. Lamb and rice. if you have suggestions or comments they are welcome.

Bull Eve Me's picture
Bull Eve Me
Wed, 04/13/2011 - 1:05pm

I'm trying a raw diet.  Chicken wings are a favorite, but I can't get them to eat any raw organ meat, so I may have to supplement with a good kibble.  Oxtails, shortribs, grated carrots and sweet potato, eggs with shells, pumpkin and yogurt are all scarfed down pronto!

Showtime16's picture
Showtime16
Wed, 04/20/2011 - 4:44pm

Hi I saw in a post someone was saying garlic was bad for pits well idk where u came across that butits good for them it help them fight off tics and fleas

amstaff adict's picture
amstaff adict
Mon, 06/20/2011 - 12:20pm

In small amount it's ok but large amounts of garlic can actually harm your dogs digestive function. you should only feed minced or mashed garlic.. never cloves....  a small amount means  1/2 a teaspoon 2 times a week at best.

Allysdad10's picture
Allysdad10
Fri, 05/27/2011 - 5:33am

Just discovered the site and wow im glad i did. ive been tryin to find out what the better dog foods were and where i could get them and now i know. thanks to all for ure comments and opinions on the different kinds i will be trying some of them shortly. like some of u ive have been trying to find the right food for my bulls and unfortunately have had the same scratching and hair loss problems, but  i hope now i can get rid of those problems for good. great site keep up the good work!

Shannon Krebs Leidholt's picture
Shannon Krebs L...
Fri, 05/27/2011 - 1:40pm

Hey guys ... i am in full tears . I have never been much of a dog lover but we just adopted our abby on may 24 and We love her so much.... my family are not talking to me because we got her. she is so sweet . how do i change there minds?

 

Alicia_S's picture
Alicia_S
Tue, 05/31/2011 - 10:45pm

I am sorry to hear about your family but some people once they have a notion in their head it's hard to change. The only way they will come around is to be around Abby and see for themselves. Unfortunately for pits the only media they get is bad media. Maybe if you could encourage them to try and give her a chance...it will take time but remember now that you have Abby she's part of your family too. Hope they change their minds soon.

astins's picture
astins
Sat, 05/28/2011 - 2:48pm

We just got our pitbull today and have never had one. so i need as much as info as possible.

southern_pit79's picture
southern_pit79
Sat, 05/28/2011 - 5:50pm

this site is a great rescource. sometimes folks can be a little slow to respond but youll get used to it. they are wonderful dogs!

bluemoon's picture
bluemoon
Thu, 07/07/2011 - 12:40pm

Well, I was in your position a year and a half ago, so I hope my advice can be helpful.  I have had adopted dogs all of my life, mixed breeds, who aside from getting an occasional pet on the head from a stranger, attracted no other attention.  My family loved them, I could let them run free in big parks for exercise, never gave them a second thought in any situation.   Then my husband and I fell in love with the face of a pitbull who has forever changed our lives.  Stella is, by far, the most incredible loyal, intuitive, connected and affectionate dog I have ever had.   I have had hound mixes, lab mixes, husky mixes, shepherd mixes, and a weimaraner, and none of them compare to Stella, our pure blue nose rescued pit bull.   While I am psyched for her because she is an incredible ambassador for the breed, "owning" her is not without its difficulties.  First, there is the public opinion that she might randomly attack, no matter where we go, people walk wide circles to avoid her.   She draws an incredible amount of attention, both positive and negative. I have never walked a dog and had her start so much conversation.  People literally yell out their car windows about how beautiful she is.  I am not used to it after having walked non descript mutts for years.  Stella captivates people. Her face is incredibly friendly, you will learn the difference between "hard eyes" and "soft eyes". Stella has soft eyes.   She gets two walks daily and a few romps per week in a totally deserted open field where she can run free.  On those walks I am at least weekly approached by cars that lean out and ask if I want to breed her.  I proudly say she is spayed and if "you are looking for  a pit bul, go on petfinder.com and find one instead of creating new ones, there are 90, 000 unwanted pit bulls to choose from " Mostly it falls on deaf ears but I say it anyway.    Be prepared for people being shy to come to your house, be aware that family will have strong opinions. ( mine have fallen in love with Stella, but not with pit bulls...the media has done significant damage unfortunately).  

they are very allergic dogs, sensitive stomachs and prone to yeast imbalances.   Stella looks at me all the time for feedback in new situations. I tell her "good girl, it's ok" and she relaxes but she is keen to protect me and is always watching me to see if she needs to do something.   They are extremely intuitive, and so she senses my level of anxiety, or even the anxiety around her and acts differently sometimes. For example our neighbor was recently murdered, and the neighborhood was very "charged" for several days afterwards.  Stella reacted to this and increased her barking and watchfulness.  She was much more easily excited and reactive, little sounds sent her to her feet, and she didn't sleep soundly.  Her bark is very intimidating, as is her thick stocky muscular build.  But after a year and a half later we have friends arrive at our house daily and walk right in and she wags and licks and gets a toy to invite them to play.  I think through our careful exposure to controlled social settings, she has at least planted a seed of thought to challenge media stereotypes in at least 100 people. 

We expose her to other dogs Cesar Milan style, side by side walks and slow introductions with a lot of praise. She loves to play, and I feel sad that I cannot just let her romp with just anyone.  She is a dominant girl and so I can't let her romp with other dominant girls.  In every other play situation she has responded great, but with dominant girls she shows a difficult to manage aggressive side that makes me nervous.  It has only happened once, and it was on leash, but it shocked me.  Her best friend is a tiny toy terrier, they romp and chase for hours.  

Ultimately, be cautious, don't make assumptions about your new dog, and watch their body language carefully. Do not put them in situations that might produce unwanted results.  They are extraordinarily powerful dogs and they need protection and to be owned by adults with good judgement. 

good luck, feel free to email if you have other questions  azulblue@sbcglobal.net

amstaff adict's picture
amstaff adict
Fri, 06/17/2011 - 12:08pm

Hi, sorry shannon that your family isn't talking to you. when I bought my american staffordshire terrier about 3 months ago my family stopped talking to me. I have a large family. I tried to change their minds by sending them stories on how pitbulls save people and how they were once military dogs (lots of veterans in my fam) but they wouldn't hear it because the media. you can't force your family to like your dog. and if they love you they will come around...  maybe call them and try and talk (not about the dog) and see if arranging a time to hang out with the dog in a cage or off the property. if your family is uncomfortable with the dog it might be better to hang out without your pitbull present. If your family is nervious around the dog it will sense that and be nervious also. I have a 1 and 2 year old. my amstaff puppy has never harmed either of them. i don't that it's fair that my dog gets judged because of a bad owner of another dog. Not all dogs are the same. they are as diverse as people.

 

I started to research dog food after a long battle with finding a proper diet for my sheltie. I purchased my amstaff and wanted to provide the best. I reasearch dog food and looked at the recall list. i wanted to find a well rounded food without corn, grain, preservatives, or artificial colors. I didn't want to buy a food with a recall history. what i found what dog food at $60 for a 15lb bag.  i can't afford that, especially for 2 dogs. so i decided to make my own dog food. i use a completely raw diet. I have been so happy with it. it's healthier, more balanced and is cheeper then buying holistic or organic dog food from the store.  there poop is solid and disitegrates within a few days, they have more energy, their coats are glossy and extremely touchable, i feed raw bones (cow femers) to help keep their teeth clean and they love them. (never give your dog cooked or small bones).  I would strongly reccomend doing extensive research before you decide to feed raw. it is the best way but it also doesn't fit into everyones lifestyle. i spend 2 hours to make 2 weeks worth and i freeze it. raw diets scare people because it appears to be time consuming... it isn't.  if you don't have time to make dog food i would recommend  "premium edge" healthy and budget friendly. orajin listed above is also a good one.

bluemoon's picture
bluemoon
Thu, 07/07/2011 - 11:26am

After much trial an error, I have found a great quality and well priced food that my bully-baby loves and that it completely cleared up wheat/ corn grain related allergies she was having.   Basically she has a systemic yeast infection that completely blew up one ear (the ear is heavily scarred inside from years of a lack of care before she was rescued).   It is a small company food and I have called and actually spoken to the owner/creator.  It may only be available in New England, I am not sure about that. Anyway, it's called Dave's Naturally Healthy food.  Her ear and foot allergies have completely cleared up with this food and her stressed (before rescue) coat is shiny and blue again. 

 

ingredients list looks like this: lamb, chicken meal, brown rice, ground white rice, chicken fat, rice bran, tomator pomace, beet pulp, yogurt, farmers cheese, dried skimmed milk, menhaden fish oil, canola oil, dried kelp...etc.

 

www.davespetfood.com

spsp143's picture
spsp143
Fri, 07/22/2011 - 9:43pm

I wasn't too surprised to find that the Purina Pro Plan I feed my 6month old male pit wasn't on the list of best dog food, but I'm curious to know, how bad is it?  It isn't completely breaking the bank but it also isn't the cheapest and from what I know about puppy food (which is hardly anything), it seems to be a pretty good choice.  I have a trainer who comes to see my Louie once a week and gave it the okay though dog food isn't her specialty.  I honestly wasn't worried about what I was feeding him until I read the article, Louie looks like he is in awesome shape, he's super active, and his vet only has good things to say.  Lou is the first dog I've had on my own (he is mine and my boyfriends) and I am beyond crazy about him, I'm nervous about everything because he's my little baby, I just want what is best for him!  I got him at 4 weeks (I know, I know), and at that point he had already been introduced to dry food, which I find strange.  Since then, I have fed him the same Pro Plan puppy food, I wet it with hot water for the first few months but haven't done that in a very long time, obviously it is unnecessary at this point.  Louie has never had any digestive issues, besides on a few occasions, eating too quickly and then throwing up.  Am I doing him a terrible injustice by feeding him this food?  HELP!