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So my pups tests came back negative. My vet told me to not freak out or change his food and give it a few more days, 2 days after that his poop went back hard and dark and hes been good ever since.. Maybe it was just the quick change but I guess it could have really been anything. Im glad because Ive really liked Victor but do think the ingredient swap was a little sheisty.
 

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Glad all is well. Yes victor is a good food. I understand the new bag looks very similar to the old bag and it sounds like so many dogs are sick because owners are unaware of the change- from what little I can see. Some dogs loosing weight from the unknown calorie decrease. It would of been nice if they slapped on a new formula label and notified suppliers for a heads up and returned the many people’s phone calls and emails if not from the unavailable nutritionist but from someone at Victor. If owning a dog with a sensitive stomach or any dog - who really needs to go through that. Disappointing. Sport dog is another good quality food i will look into and add to my list. I see sport dog food and the family are pretty close by so good to support local business.
 

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I received information that Victor was a family owned business and brought in some investors. It was the investors that changed the formula so that they could save on money yet they also increased the prices. I am highly disappointed in and am looking at other options. Especially with the concerns circulating around grain-free foods and DCM (canine dilated cardiomyopathy). The only reason I had my dogs on grain free is because some of my previous dogs, whom have sinced passed, were on GF due to allergies. But a company being sneaky and deceptive is a totally different ball of wax.
 

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We were feeding our boy Victor chicken, brown rice and lamb, after having switched him from a GF Orijen formula late last year (yes, because that was when the initial reports of diet related DCM were starting to come out). We were satisfied with Victor, and our boy seemed to like it (he had a tendency to be a picky German Shepherd). The last shipment of Victor that we received was with the new formula (about a month to a month and a half ago), and we noticed that the ingredients/formula had been changed. Instead of chicken, chicken meal, and brown rice as their first ingredients, they are now chicken meal, grain sorghum and peas... Peas, a filler ingredient because it's probably cheaper to use... peas/legumes are also suspect to be a contributor to the increased cases of DCM (I understand, along with other dietary contributors). We immediately switched to another brand... why would we stay with a brand that was high quality that now has taken the best ingredients and substituted them for fillers? Coincidentally, peas/legumes as an ingredient were nowhere to be found in the pervious formula, so why now?

On another note, when we initially switched to Victor, we were also feeding our boy the Hi Pro Plus formula. He went through one bag just fine, but as soon as we started him on a new bag, he immediately began vomiting, sometimes even before finishing his dish of food. We had vet visits and a bland diet for a week or so, slowly introducing his kibble back into his feedings. As soon as we reintroduced the Hi Pro Plus, the vomiting began again. I thought perhaps it could have been something with the batch (I also understand that maybe the formula just didn't agree with his stomach for whatever reason). In any event, I messaged the company to make them aware of the problem, just in case it was the batch and they perhaps had other incidences, and the reply I got was basically, "ok, thank you". Not a note of concern or question to be had from them, which I found to be somewhat disconcerting and insensitive on their part. We discontinued feeding the HPP, but continued with the CBRL formula and were satisfied with it.... until they changed, of course!
 

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That’s odd that the lamb and rice and the chicken and rice formulas have peas, but the beef and rice one doesn’t.
 

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"The last shipment of Victor that we received was with the new formula (about a month to a month and a half ago), and we noticed that the ingredients/formula had been changed. Instead of chicken, chicken meal, and brown rice as their first ingredients, they are now chicken meal, grain sorghum and peas... Peas, a filler ingredient because it's probably cheaper to use... peas/legumes are also suspect to be a contributor to the increased cases of DCM"


What a pinheaded thing to do to up the peas in their formulas in the midst of the DCM issue. I've dismissed Victor for that reason alone.
 

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Victor recently changed their packaging on all of their formulas but that was not the only change. Along with the new bags, all of the formulas have changed. All formulas now have blood meal due to a reduction in meat meal as a protein source. The grain free formulas have peas higher on the ingredient list. Some have now also added garbanzo beans into the ingredient list. Formulas like the Yukon salmon moved salmon out of the first few ingredients. All formulas also now have Tetra Sodium Pyrophosphate and Vegetable Oil in them. They have added the blood meal to still be able to claim the same protein levels while decreasing the amount of meat in them. Victor also removed the general analysis tab that they had on their website for each formula and now only have the guaranteed analysis. Calorie content per cup decreased on almost every formula as well. I am disappointed in the change in the brand and wanted to give others a heads up. It seems the popularity got to them and in order to keep prices the same they needed to modify the ingredients and in my opinion, downgrade. I will be switching.
Our GSD's started throwing up brown looking poop like substance a few months ago, but our lab/hound mix wasn't having any issues. We changed out the food for the Germans, and went on vacation and gave the new food to all 3 to keep it easy for the caretakers (no victor). When we got back we from vacation we started our lab/hound back on Victor and she too threw up the brown poop like substance. This dog in the 9 years we have had her has never thrown up! We called Chewy and they refunded our money, and told us to donate to a shelter. Not a chance of that. This food should be tested at a lab, as there is something profoundly wrong with it. Our GSD's have not puked since we changed the food and neither has our Squishy baby.
 

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My ~6 m.o. puppy, Luke, has been doing very well on Victor Select beef meal and brown rice. The Victor Purpose senior healthy weight has really helped firm up Max’s stool. He has DM and had an odor (anal glands) that our last vet said was due to the decreased tone and sensation as the disease progressed. We decided to change foods to see if it would help, and it has- problem gone! They have both been eating Victor for several months, so we started it after the ingredient change. The senior formula does have peas, but it’s not very high on the ingredient list.
 

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I've been using Hi-Energy for training with my young dog for the past 16 months. Zero issues. Fed to other dogs for years prior and it helped one's digestive issues and another did very well on it.
 

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Really. If you have dogs getting sick and you suspect a bag of food then you need to take them to a vet, with the food to be tested, and contact the company directly. Not the store you bought it from. Posting a review saying the food should be tested means nothing and doesn't do anyone a service with an anecdotal post that has no proof attached.

That one bag of food could have gone bad in storage or the one batch could have something wrong with it. Or maybe the dogs continued to throw up while you were on vacation for 3 weeks and the caretakers didn't notice.
 

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I'm a bit conflicted. I've been feeding my dogs Victor Hero Canine for a while now and it's been an unmitigated success. They freaking love the stuff, just annihilate it every feeding, by far their favorite kibble I've had them on and it's high in protein and includes joint supplements, which I like. Their stools are and have always been A+ on it. Not to mention I can buy 50 pound bags on Amazon which is very cost-effective. Honestly, I'm very happy with the food.

Then this whole issue came to my attention recently and it is Grain-Free and the 2nd and 3rd ingredients are peas and sweet potato (although the food also contains Taurine). I can't say I'm super concerned, as this whole issue isn't impacting GSD's much, seems to be very vaguely understood at this point -- also my dogs are incredibly healthy and I also give them raw meaty bones fairly consistently for variety and teeth health. I fed a previous dog who passed last summer his entire life grain-free with no issues, he lived a normal lifespan and was incredibly healthy for his breed (English Bulldog). He was born with a minor heart murmur too and it never progressed or was an issue through his life.

That said, I mean, if there's a possibility this could impact them, I suppose it's worth considering switching them off it. What say you? If so, any recommendations on kibble to consider? Thanks!
 

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If it concerns you to feed grain-free, then why not try a different Victor formula that isn't grain-free? Victor offers at least a couple formulas that are high protein that are not grain-free and contain no legumes or potatoes. Take a look at the Nutra Pro, and Hi Pro Plus formulas - both high protein, neither are grain-free. I've fed both and my dogs have both done fantastic on each. I currently feed the Nutra Pro formula.
 

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IMHO, I don't think we need to be worried about grain free food...even with that study out. I mean, how many of us have fed generations of our dogs grain free food and nothing's happened? I fed my first one...grain free food for most of his life and in the end he died of something completely unrelated. All the study shows is that it's a possibility that grain free food might be giving dogs DCM. Nothing's definite. My opinion....keep feeding them Hero Canine since they love it so much. If you're really worried about it, Victor makes many non grain-free foods too. You can also write to Victor and ask them what their take on DCM and Hero Canine is. In fact if you do write to them, let us know what their response is.
 
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