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Hi Guys, My boy is on solid gold wolf cub and he is 9 months old. When he is 12 months I'm thinking to swith over to adult food. I have a confusion about kibble. From what I see here, there is controversy about to feed a puppy with grain-free food. As we all know, shepherds don't complete their development til 2 years. So, Should I wait until my pup is 2 yo in order to feed him grain-free kibble or what? If you share your thoughts it'' be so much help. Thanks
 

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Start feeding grain-free yesterday.
Wolves and dogs have never, not ever, 'needed' grain. Orijen is a good grainfree, Wellness Core, and others.
 

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seems like you got responses on this issue on another thread. even wellness themselves warn against feeding their grainless product to puppies, and you know they want your business/$$. i think they took a responsible approach to this, at least compared to some other producers. this is from the faq section on the wellness site:

I have heard that some of these high protein diets can’t be fed to large breed puppies. Why?

Research has shown that large breed puppies should not be fed a diet that is over 1.3 – 1.5% Calcium or they run a significant risk of developing bone abnormalities. Many of the high protein diets on the market today are well in excess of 1.5% Calcium. We do not recommend any large breed puppies be fed our CORE dog diets, or any of the other high protein diets on the market today. In fact, we would conservatively say that puppies in general should not feed higher protein diets that exceed 1.5% Calcium. Again, this is why we feature a maintenance claim and promote the diet for dogs over 1 year in age.

you are feeding wolfcub, and even solid gold discusses this in the description of this food:

High energy diets, like most puppy foods, can promote rapid growth in large breed puppies, which can play a role in the development of orthopedic diseases. WolfCub Large Breed Puppy Formula contains a lower amount of protein, fat, and calories than Hundchen Flocken Puppy Food to help control the growth process. Research shows that a Calcium level of 1.5% or less is the most suitable for a large breed puppy.
Protein, Min 26%Fat, Min 12%Fiber, Max 4%Moisture, Max 10%Calcium, Max 1.5%Phosphorus, Max 1.2%Calories per cup, 375


barb did a nice comparison on a grainless kibble vs a non grainless kibble (canidae) in the other thread:

from barb:

you are feeding wolfcub, and even solid gold discusses this in the description of this food:

High energy diets, like most puppy foods, can promote rapid growth in large breed puppies, which can play a role in the development of orthopedic diseases. WolfCub Large Breed Puppy Formula contains a lower amount of protein, fat, and calories than Hundchen Flocken Puppy Food to help control the growth process. Research shows that a Calcium level of 1.5% or less is the most suitable for a large breed puppy.
Protein, Min 26%Fat, Min 12%Fiber, Max 4%Moisture, Max 10%Calcium, Max 1.5%Phosphorus, Max 1.2%Calories per cup, 375
 

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sorry, i messed up the end of that last post. here is what barb said in the other thread:

So here is a comparison between Orijen Adult (Grain free) and Canidae all life stages

Orijen Adult (I have removed some items just to save space)
Guaranteed Analysis
Protein 42.0%
Fat 16.0%
Moisture 10.0%
Fiber 3.0%
Calcium (min.) 1.6%
Calcium (max.) 1.8%
Phosphorus (min.) 1.2%
Phosphorus (max.) 1.4%
4200 kcal/kg (483 kcal per 250ml cup)
http://www.championpetfoods.com/orijen/products/adult.aspx

Canidae all life stages (I have removed some items just to save space)
Guaranteed Analysis
Crude Protein (min.) 24.00%
Crude Fat (min.) 14.50%
Moisture (min.) 10.00%
Crude Fiber (max.) 4.00%
Calcium (min.) 1.20%
Phosphorus (min.) .90%
Calculated Caloric Content
ME (kcal/kg) 4125
ME (kcal/g) 4.13
ME (kcal/lb) 1875
ME (kcal/cup) 468
http://www.canidae.com/dogs/all_life_stages/dry.html

Differences:
Protein +18%
Fat + 1.5%
Calcium +.5% (used an average of min/max for Orijen)
Phosphorus +.4% (used an average of min/max for Orijen)

Of course, since lines of thought change as we learn more and more and technology allows different means of study and communication there may come a time when they say no it's not protein level, it's not calcium, it's not phosphorus or calories, it's XXX.

With what we know right now, I wouldn't suggest feeding a growing GSD Orijen grain free. The makers of Wellness Core suggested not feeding Core to a puppy due to calcium at higher than 1.5% (Core is 2%)
 

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Originally Posted By: BrightelfStart feeding grain-free yesterday.
Wolves and dogs have never, not ever, 'needed' grain. Orijen is a good grainfree, Wellness Core, and others.
I have never seen wolves being farmers...


Powell
 

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Ok, so here's the follow up question. When is a gsd considered an adult? In my case I know nothing about Rafi's parents and I only know an approximate age. He is definitely still growing and has filled out considerably in the 4 months he's been with me.

Now I am thinking I should not be feeding grain free although I have been feeding it since he arrived!


I also have to say that in the long run we really don't know how the dogs will do on these high protein foods and that does make me nervous.
 

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Originally Posted By: BowWowMeowOk, so here's the follow up question. When is a gsd considered an adult?.


I also have to say that in the long run we really don't know how the dogs will do on these high protein foods and that does make me nervous.
since the fear w/ lg breed pups has to do with development of problems during growth, i consider an adult one who is done growing, though im sure thats not the consensus definition of an adult. obviously a 1 yr old has much less growing left than a younger pup, so maybe its less of an issue in that case.

you're right, it seems that the research on high protein foods is relatively recent. that is why i worry about the 40+% protein kibbles and what we new research will say in 5 or 10 years. im not sure about this, but isnt the proliferation of grain free high protein foods quite recent? this is one reason i feel better erring on the side of caution and sticking w/grain free foods that arent quite so sky high in protein.
 

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So, are you saying that Rafi should be ok then if he is over a year (which I am sure of)? I've compensated by adding less calcium to his homemade food.

Yes, the grain free foods are relatively new. Of course people have been feeding raw a long time but those diets are lower in protein as I understand it (because of the water content). It's really only been the past 5 (?) years that there has been grain free kibble and only in the past 2 that lots of companies are coming out with it.

Chama has been on grain free kibble for 2 years now and I have to say her poops and overall digestion are better than they've ever been. But some dogs definitely can't handle the really high protein levels and others seem to do better on (good quality) grains.
 

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Originally Posted By: BowWowMeowSo, are you saying that Rafi should be ok then if he is over a year
i guess its impossible to say with certainty whether or not it would be detrimental based on what little new research exists on these types of foods, but i know others have gone ahead w/grainless kibbles after 1 yr. im just paranoid so im going to wait til my girl is 1 1/2 yrs old.
 

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Based on Rafi's growth I'm guessing he's at least 18 months old so I think we're safe. I will pass along this info to others though!
 

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I chose not to move Dante to grain free earlier for a couple of reasons.
First was that for a long time the only grain free foods had 40+ protein levels and I'm not convinced that we're not going to find a decade from now that those high protein levels in a dry food are actually not great for renal function.

But, even if the lower ones had been available he wasn't mature by a year. How much was muscle and how much skeletal between 1 and 2? Don't know, didn't keep track of his height but pictures show a pretty big change between the 1 year birthday and the 2 year birthday.

We all have to decide what we're going to do that is best for our dogs with the information we have at the time. Please don't remind about what I fed my poor cats, had no clue about good pet diet back then!!
 

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My Gunner has been on a grain free and raw diet from 8 weeks old he is now 1 year old and he s doing great on on a grain free diet.
Everybody asks me what I'm feeding him because he looks just great!!!
 
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