Greyt Inspirations Life

A little about our life, our business and our pets.

Dog Food Woes

Dogfood Woes

I know from talking to other dog lovers that so many of them have issues with the food they buy their dogs. You can include me in that number. Ever since the pet food recalls last year I’ve paid more attention to what I feed my horde. Not only that, but when fuel costs began rising and farmers began growing more corn for ethanol and less for feed it seriously affected the price of all kinds of dog food. Whether it was the corn used in foods or the corn used to feed beef and other meat sources, many ingredients in dog foods shot up in cost. The result has been that dog food has gone up over 6 percent in cost this year. You’re definitely paying more for your dog’s food than you were a year ago. And chances are that the size of the bag has also been made smaller to try to help hide the fact. If you paid $14 for a 20 pound bag of food last year you’re probably paying $20 for the same food in a 17 pound bag right now. (That’s a real example I’ve seen with one well-known grocery store brand.)

Photo courtesy flickr
Since I have four big dogs these price increases have hit me hard. We go through a 37.5 pound bag of food every two weeks. I had been feeding the same food for ten years, with good results, but recently the company made changes in the formula (something else that’s been happening a lot lately as dog food manufacturers try to find cheaper ingredients). They decided to add soy products as one source of protein, something that I, and a lot of other people, felt was a bad idea. If you have Setters, or other breeds prone to bloat, you know that soy products can be a problematic ingredient. Anything that can lead to a dog producing more gas in his gut can be a real problem since it can potentially cause his stomach to torsion. Therefore, I decided it was time to start considering some of the more natural dog foods.

We’ve been trying various kibbles recommended by the Whole Dog Journal which rates the best foods annually. I think my dogs have been enjoying this process but I can’t say that I have been entirely happy with any single food we’ve tried. We’ve tried organic foods, “natural” dog foods, baked foods, and grainless foods. My pocketbook is hurting. These foods are sometimes $20 more for 30 pound bags than I was paying before for the 37.5 pound bags, and I wasn’t buying cheap food then. To make matters worse, the local store where I buy the foods charges around $7 per bag more than the store an hour away. I’m always asking myself if it’s worth driving an hour and spending the gas to save the money. I could buy these foods online and save money on the price of the food, but the shipping costs would make them cost the same as buying locally.

If I felt that I had found a food that was clearly superior to what I used to feed and that the dogs did a lot better on it, then I would pay the price and not complain so much. But so far I haven’t found a food that fits that description. Right now my oldest dog is itching and scratching on a dog food that costs me $56 for a 30 pound bag, and he’s never had an allergy or other skin problem in his life. He sure is getting fat though!

There may be hope for us. I read this week that my old food has been overwhelmed by e-mails and calls from customers and they’re bringing back one of the foods they had stopped making. Starting in January we’ll be able to buy it again in the same old formula. I guess we’ll continue to try different foods for a while longer to see if we find one that’s better for us. If we don’t find one that fits my dogs and helps them do well then we’ll be going back to the old food at the start of the year.

November 11, 2008 - Posted by | General | , , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. […] Dogfood Woes I know from talking to other dog lovers that so many of them have issues with the food they buy their dogs. You can include me in that number. Original post […]

    Pingback by » Dog Food Woes | November 11, 2008 | Reply

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