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Discussion Starter #1
This is for my ~6 month GSD puppy. I don't have a current weight, but I think she's around 50 pounds, fairly tall/long and lean--I think her weight is good now, but a pound or two more wouldn't hurt.

History: humane society rescue being fed Science Diet. I switched her to Canidae, but I'm not thrilled with the results. She eats 2 cups for breakfast and 2 for dinner. She usually poops three times per day and it's a little softer than I'd like, not runny or pudding poo, but soft enough that some will stick in the grass if I don't get the baggy under her rear end as she is going!
She eats her own poop (but not the other dogs' poop--they are eating raw/grain-free kibble).

I have been using Prozyme for the last 3-4 weeks and it doesn't appear to make any difference, so I am thinking of switching foods; I would prefer a grain-free food. My other dogs eat a mix of EVO and Nature's Variety Duck/Turkey and Rabbit formulas for dinner 3-4 times per week, but I'm concerned about the protein/fat/calcium/phosphorus. I like what I've read/heard about Wellness Core and Orijen; Orijen may be more difficult for me to get.

So, what do y'all think? Is there anything else I should do before switching foods? She was wormed at the shelter, including Panacur, but might the softer poop and poop eating stem from a parasite? Should she be tested for something? Or do you think it's just the food?

~Kristin
 

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Jesse started on Science Diet - he didn't like it and poos were mushy and pood 6 times a day and a lot of poo too (bigger than my old Saint Bernard every did), we switched Jesse to Canidae for a month, still not good results then we switched to Timberwolf after a week of adjusting to that food, poos became well formed, and smaller and not as often, also not that smelly too and he went from a dog that didn't like kibble to a dog that absolutely loves this food and gobbles it up. I am satisfied with Timberworf food for Jesse but every dog it different. My old dog Jed loved Science Diet and nothing else, and lived for 10 good years (Saint Bernard)
 

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Science Diet is one of the worst foods out there. I say that because the ingredients are terrible yet you pay a premium price for it.

I like Orijen but the protein levels are probably too high for such a young puppy. Taste of the Wild has one variety with lower protein (and all are grain free).

Nature's Variety and the regular Wellness are also good foods. I don't think keeping him on grains is necessarily going to hurt him . Why not try a different protein and adding some digestive enzymes?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Ruth, I'm already using digestive enzymes (Prozyme).

I guess I should add that I would like a grain-free because I'd like to be using the same kibble for all 4 dogs, if possible.

~Kristin
 

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I have always heard that it's not good to have a puppy or a dog under the age of 1 on a grain free diet. But, like I said that is hear-say. Honestly, I would make sure it would be okay with your Vet.

As far as grain free food options - look into Natural Balance, Solid Gold Barking at the Moon and I'm sure there are several more out there. I would just search on yahoo "Grain Free Dog Food" and see what options come up from that. I don't know too many of them but I know others on this board are more familiar with the Grain Free foods.

As far as her poop eating - Ava does this and it drives me crazy! She doesn't do it as much now as she used too (knock on wood) but I totally understand what you are going through. I too add the Prozyme to her meals about 3 times a week. The Vet said it isn't necessary but I can if I want too.

Good luck on your search and I'm sure you will something that all dogs can eat.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Nobody else? Huh. I thought I'd get more comments! I am familiar with my options regarding grain-free diets, but I've never had a dog that couldn't eat whatever/anytime without digestive upset/soft poo.

As far as consulting my vet, I'm pretty sure that I know more about food options than she does. I like her, and she doesn't hassle me about vaccines, but I wouldn't ask her for nutrition advice.

~Kristin
 

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Kristin,

why are you using digestive enzymes? which canidae are you using?

is she gassy or does she just have pudding poop?

Paige
 

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I had a lot of problems with my shelter dog Lilly this past few months since I got her in December. She was wormed in the shelter also before I got her but they never mentioned to me that she needed a second dose in 3 weeks to kill any eggs that might hatch out. Hence hookworm, pudding pooh and blood in the stool. I would consider doing a follow up stool sample just in case and make sure you aren`t overfeeding. That always causes loose stools with Lilly. Even as little as a quarter cup too much can cause problems. Adding a little pure pumpkin to her food always helps too. Extra fiber.
 

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Which Canidae are you using? If you are using the combo with all the meats...maybe that is too much for her system...some dogs get soft stools with the lamb. You could try using the chicken only and see if that helps.
Also, she is eating 4 cups a day? You may be feeding her a bit too much, so that may be why she is going more often. My male, who is 80+ pounds and active eats 4 cups a day.
Canidae is a good price food...for the quality. My dogs are doing very well on it. I have one female that has a little softer stools then the other two, but she always has. She also eats poop...I sometimes think that has something to do with her soft stools.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Karla, I'm using the all life stages. Yes, I'm feeding 4 cups per day, but she needs that much to maintain her weight. I'm using the prozyme because I thought that she wasn't absorbing all she needed from the food (resulting in the poop eating and not gaining weight). She usually poops 3 times per day. My initial thought was that I was overfeeding, but she wasn't gaining weight. Her weight is good now, but she can't afford to lose any.

I pick up as she goes (literally, I can usually dart in and get the baggie under her as she goes) so the soft poop isn't from eating poop.

I think that I'm leaning towards TOTW, but I'm not sure which formula.

As far as parasites, there has never been any blood in the stool--would you always see blood if there were hookworms? She was given Panacur at least twice at the humane society. I've got Nemex, but that only does roundworms, right?

~Kristin
 

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Kristin,

If I were you I would consider a food switch. Hard to say which one. I wouldn't necessarily go with TOTW with a 6 month old pup personally. I might try something like Eagle Pack or Merricks first. I wouldn't necessarily go with Solid Gold either as I have heard that it is rich from one too many people. Canidae works great for some dogs and not for others. Honestly, I have heard alot of people having luck with ProPlan for Sensitive Stomachs. I know, go figure.

Personally, I would try and find a food that works first and not go straight to Prozymes especially with a young pup, but again that's my personal preference.

I would also have a stool check making sure you get the more accurate Giardia test.

LandosMom
 

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I had a problem with Suesse when she was on Canidae, with her poo, it was soft to pudding. I then had her on the RCMaxi 24 did great but the price was too much so I though maybe it was just a "bad" bag of the Canidae as the others were doing good on it so I went back and she had the same problem, so I went with the Breeders Choice, Avoderm and she is doing, as well as the others, great on it, no more soft to pudding poos.

I think for my girl it was just too many meat sources for her which was giving her the softies.
 

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Make sure to test for giardia (antigen test). The symptoms are soft stool and difficulty to gain weight. Canidae didn't work out very well with my dogs, I switched to Innova Large breed puppy and it works good so far.
 

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Big fan of Timberwolf and Orijen here.
 

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Been mostly using Life's Abundance for 9 years and very happy with it. Other feeds I like are Eagle Pack (regular line) Pro Plan, Blackwood, Verus and Evanger's. I'll use those when I run out of food before it arrives (it is shipped.)

Cherri
 
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