Nature’s Variety Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet (Dry)

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Rating: ★★★★½

Nature’s Variety Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet dry dog food earns the Advisor’s second-highest tier rating of 4.5 stars.

The Nature’s Variety Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet product line includes three dry dog foods, each claimed to meet AAFCO nutrient profiles for all life stages.

The following is a list of recipes available at the time of this review.

  • Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Duck Meal Formula
  • Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Lamb Meal Formula
  • Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Turkey Meal Formula

Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Lamb Meal Formula was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Lamb Meal Formula

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 32% | Fat = 20% | Carbs = 40%

Ingredients: Lamb meal, tapioca, peas, canola oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols and citric acid), natural flavor, montmorillonite clay, coconut oil, potassium chloride, salt, vitamins (vitamin A supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin E supplement, niacin supplement, d-calcium pantothenate, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate, thiamine mononitrate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, riboflavin supplement, folic acid, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement), minerals (zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, copper proteinate, manganese proteinate, ethylenediamine dihydriodide, sodium selenite), choline chloride, green tea extract, rosemary extract

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 3.9%

Red items when present indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis29%18%NA
Dry Matter Basis32%20%40%
Calorie Weighted Basis27%40%33%

The first ingredient in this dog food is lamb meal. Lamb meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh lamb.

The second item is tapioca, a gluten-free, starchy carbohydrate extract made from the root of the cassava plant.

The third ingredient mentions peas. Peas are a quality source of carbohydrates. And like all legumes, they’re rich in natural fiber.

However, peas contain about 25% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

The fourth ingredient is canola oil. Many applaud canola for its favorable omega-3 content while a vocal minority condemn it as an unhealthy fat.

Much of the objection regarding canola oil appears to be related to the use of genetically modified rapeseed as its source material.

Yet others find the negative stories about canola oil more the stuff of urban legend than actual science.1

In any case, plant-based oils like canola are less biologically available to a dog than fish oil as a source of quality omega-3 fats.

After the natural flavor, we find montmorillonite clay, a naturally occurring compound rich in many trace minerals. Montmorillonite has been approved for use in USDA Organic Certified products.

Reported benefits include the binding of certain mold-based toxins and even controlling diarrhea and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

The seventh ingredient is coconut oil. Depending upon the quality of the raw material, coconut oil is rich in medium chain fatty acids.

Coconut oil has been reported to have a beneficial effect on a dog’s skin and coat, improve digestion, and reduce allergic reactions.2

From here, the list goes on to include a number of other items.

But to be realistic, ingredients located this far down the list (other than nutritional supplements) are not likely to affect the overall rating of this product.

With two notable exceptions

First, we find no mention of probiotics, friendly bacteria applied to the surface of the kibble after processing to help with digestion.

And lastly, this food contains chelated minerals, minerals that have been chemically attached to protein. This makes them easier to absorb. Chelated minerals are usually found in better dog foods.

Nature’s Variety Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet dry dog food looks like an above average dry product.

But ingredient quality by itself cannot tell the whole story. We still need to estimate the product’s meat content before determining a final rating.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 32%, a fat level of 20% and estimated carbohydrates of about 40%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 33% and a mean fat level of 20%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 40% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 60%.

Above-average protein. Above-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.

When you consider the protein-boosting effect of the peas, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Nature’s Variety Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet is a plant-based dry food using a moderate amount of named meat meals as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 4.5 stars.

Highly recommended.

Please note some products may have been given higher or lower ratings based upon our estimate of their total meat content.

Special Alert

Rice ingredients can sometimes contain arsenic. Until the US FDA establishes safe upper levels for arsenic content, pet owners may wish to limit the total amount of rice fed in a dog's daily diet.

A Final Word

The descriptions and analyses expressed in this and every article on this website represent the views and opinions of the author.

Although it's our goal to ensure all the information on this website is correct, we cannot guarantee its completeness or its accuracy; nor can we commit to ensuring all the material is kept up-to-date on a daily basis.

Each review is offered in good faith and has been designed to help you make a more informed decision when buying dog food.

However, our rating system is not intended to suggest feeding a particular product will result in specific health benefits for your pet.

For a better understanding of how we analyze each product, please read our article, "The Problem with Dog Food Reviews".

Remember, no dog food can possibly be appropriate for every life stage, lifestyle or health condition. So, choose wisely. And when in doubt, consult a qualified veterinary professional for help.

In closing, we do not accept money, gifts or samples from pet food companies in exchange for special consideration in the preparation of our reviews or ratings.

To learn how we support the cost of operating this website, please visit our public Disclosure and Disclaimer page.

Have an opinion about this dog food? Or maybe the review itself? Please know we welcome your comments.

Notes and Updates

06/03/2011 Original review
12/21/2012 Review updated
12/21/2012 Last Update

  1. Mikkelson, B and DP, Oil of Ole, Urban Legends Reference Pages (2005)
  2. Dr. Bruce Fife, Healthy Ways Newsletter, Vol 4:3
  • Erica

    My JRT is allergic to almost everything, she does great on the this brand.
    We use the turkey one it seems to be the one she likes the best.

  • Lynn

    I have a 14 year old Papillon with severe congestion. The Vets can’t figure it out. No other symptoms Nicole L did you get any results from the Natures Variety?

  • Storm’s Mom

    Finally found a food that Storm seems to NOT do well on! :-( He’s been on the NV LID Rabbit for a couple weeks now (tried it because it has almost none of the same ingredients as the Nature’s Logic Salmon he was on most recently (so a great rotation candidate!), and he enjoyed the Nature’s Logic Rabbit he had a while ago) ..but and he’s continuing to have mushier (and much darker) poops than normal/ideal. It seems like more volume, too. I’ve adjusted the portion quite a bit, and still the same output. He seems to love it, is eager to wolf it down, but the mushy output has me thinking maybe I should just switch him off it after this small bag is done in, likely, a week or so. The stools are much better when probiotics and enzymes are added in, but normally it doesn’t matter this much with him whether probtioics/digestive enzymes are added or not. Bummer, I was hoping to add this into the rotation (instead of Nature’s Logic Rabbit, because that one has turkey, too) …but seems it’s not to be. I guess it was inevitable that I’d eventually come across something he didn’t do well on, but really wish it hadn’t been this one!!! :-(

  • Melissaandcrew

    Hi Madison-My bulldog ate the rabbit as a pup and did wonderfully.

  • Madison

    Thank you so much for the advice. I will probably choose one of the proteins you mentioned. It will be much easier having my puppy and adult dog on the same food! Thanks again :)

  • theBCnut

    Their LID Turkey formula has low enough calcium for the special calcium requirements that large breed puppies have. The other LIDs don’t. Their regular Rabbit also has low enough calcium for LBPs. I use their foods for my Border Collies, even as puppies. They are one of my favorite brands. I only feed ALS foods, even to my 12 year old dog.

  • Madison

    Has anyone fed this dog food to their puppy? I think it’s a great food for my adult westie but I’m unsure if it is for our new puppy. I’ve read conflicting articles about too much calcium. What’s your opinion on this food for puppies and all stages of life? Thanks !

  • Nicole L.

    I am going to try out Natures Variety with my 13 yo Dauchshund. Over the last year he has developed chronic nasal congestion and ear infections and is constantly reverse sneezing and sneezing up mucus. He has given himself pneumonia three times by reverse sneezing and breathing mucus into his lungs. My vet doesn’t really think it is a food allergy, but I am not sure what else to try.

  • mike

    Can you tell me what brand are you using free of peas and LID… thanks

  • Pattyvaughn

    That depends on what your Lab is allergic to. It is a good food, but it still may not work for your dog if one of the ingredients triggers your dog.

  • carolina

    is this food good for my allergic labrador??

  • Pattyvaughn

    It could be that his pancreas isn’t functioning as it should, but dobies are known for colitis. Some of them need restricted fiber, BTW, just to drag the other threads convo over here. When you finally find what works for yours, you will have a hard time ever changing again.

  • mfulton7

    Sorry to jump in here but I’m curious to know when your dobes started with the loose stools. I have a 15wk old dobe that has had loose stools off and on since we got her. We’ve had her stool checked 3+ times and its always negative. I hope his isn’t the beginning of a colitis disease.

  • Linda

    My 19 month miniature poodle has multiple allergies.
    Many of which are in all dog foods. Natures Variety LID was the charm. They also have great dog treats (biscuits) LID so our little one is living a normal life now.
    She’s also has more energy and vitality since using this product. I can relate about potato too with our dog. Not to worry with NV LID formulas.

  • Melissaandcrew

    Dobes alwayd had the ultra. My smaller ones had the regular and output was ok. However I had to feed more than the recc smiunt for quite a few of them to hold weight and some still lost. Ie my 15lb, 15 yt old who eats 3/4 cup of anything else lost weight on 1 1/4 cups.

  • Crazy4cats

    So, I’m assuming that the Dobes poop were good on the ALS also, but just couldn’t keep their weight on. Is that correct? Here I go again with the poop talk again! I’m not sure if the fat is a concern or not. I’ve just read that excessive fat can cause loose stools. I’d like to go with the ultra because it doesn’t cost much more for a lot more protein. I just want to have poop that I can pick up easily when we take them out in public. Sometimes so messy and embarrassing. lol!

  • Melissaandcrew

    Some of my crew lost weight on the regular ALS, others did fine. If you are concerned about the fat, go with the regular grain free ALS, and watch their weight. The Ultra Pro is too high fat for my schnauzers so they only had the regular grain free. Dobes do fine on the Ultra Pro.

  • Melissaandcrew

    Geesh,,so many people have come and gone, so many have changed names from time to time, lol,. Not sure who that is, but I can wing it, lol. I will send you an email right now.

  • Crazy4cats

    Hi Melissa-
    OK, I’m up. My crew (4 cats & 2 dogs) didn’t realize that day light saving time ended today. So much for an extra hour of sleep! I’ve been trying to decide if I’m going to start with the ALS or the Ultra. I’m not sure what they are sensitive to. It seems like everything! But mostly I just don’t think their guts are back in order yet. They are 80ish pound golden/lab mix. As for the poop description, I can relate. I don’t think I’ve talked about poop as much in my entire life as I have in the last year. Lol! Which type do you think I should start with? Thank you for your help.

  • InkedMarie
  • Melissaandcrew

    Hi Crazy4Cats

    The majority of my dogs did not do great on the Natures Logic. Their stool was soft but not runny. It had a weird smooth play doh appearance lol.I did use the als grain free also but felt I had to feed too much to hold weight. I gave that to my fat sensitive ones not the colitis/sensitive dobes.

  • Crazy4cats

    Melissa-
    I’m glad you brought up the Victor. I think I’m going to give it a try now that it is available here. I don’t know if my dogs have IBD, IBS, Colitis, or leaky gut. I just know their stools are often too soft especially after exercise. They have been off and on antibiotics for parasites, but are clear now. I have noticed you recommending the ultra pro before and have taken notice. I keep adding a little fiber. Maybe they actually need less? I am feeding Natures Logic beef right now and was hoping for great results, but they still are inconsistent. I am a little concerned about the fat level in the ultra pro. It’s higher than they are used to. But then, the protein level is higher too. I have two large active young lab mix male dogs that eat a lot, so the price looks very good. Thanks for your helpful info that you post.

  • Melissaandcrew

    HI Erin-I have used it for colitis/IBD dogs and they did okay. Right now the are getting Victor Ultra pro grain free-its not novel protein however. I found with mine it was not the protein source but rather the fiber content-lower being better for them. Abady granular also worked well.

  • Betsy Greer

    I too, have a stockpile Dave. A horde really… too much dog food. I inventoried it this morning and catalogued it on a spreadsheet. I truly must be sick! I blame it on Dr. Mike! ; )

  • Pattyvaughn

    Thanks! I still haven’t tried it. I had a setback with Micah and a tomato ingredient so I’m waiting to get him stable again before trying something new again.

  • Dave’s Hounds

    I have a stockpile of unopened foods….I am not waiting for Farmina….

  • Dave’s Hounds

    of all the foods I have tried (and that is many many many) my hounds really do well on Natures Logic canned and kibble. I have also had success with NL and with Brothers (but some loose stool). I only feed kibble in am for ease.

  • Dave’s Hounds

    there are no potatoes in Natures Logic rabbit, I don’t think NV Instinct rabbit has potatoes either. Both are excellent

  • Dave’s Hounds

    I would move your beagle to canned – natures logic or NV instinct are great – they both have rabbit, lamb, beef, chicken and beef. Canned or dehydrated is more expensive but much easier to digest and have more bio available nutrients.

  • Erin

    My beagle was recently diagnosed with IBD. She’s on royal canin hypoallergenic kibble right now but once she’s stable I would like to get her on a healthy non prescription food. If vet recommended a novel protein like rabbit or venison so I was thinking the natures variety LID rabbit… I’ve read mixed reviews but does anyone use it for their IBD dog? I’ve also thought of trying honest kitchen but they don’t have anything with venison or rabbit and the salmon formula has eggs so I wanted to avoid that. Thanks!

  • Pattyvaughn

    I only said that because I was replying to Betsy, my first thought was to say I pulled a Sandy. GFETE!!

  • InkedMarie

    rofl@”I did pull a Betsy”!!

  • Storm’s Mom

    If I find a new one that I really want to try, I just sneak it into the rotation immediately. I did that with Nutrience GF recently. Patience is not one of my virtues ;-)

  • InkedMarie

    That’s the downside, for me, with the dogs eating a variety: I don’t get to try the new stuff sooner!

  • Pattyvaughn

    My charge card is loving it!!

  • Storm’s Mom

    I’m envious of your ability to go through a big bag relatively quickly!! ;-)

  • Pattyvaughn

    LMAO!! You get bored of the dog food!!! I know mine don’t have time to get bored, they snarf it up so fast, it’s ridiculous. I did pull a Betsy and buy too many bags of food, so now I’m using them up, then I can do it again! My husband was alarmed when I had 4 twenty-five lb bags of dog food stacked on the floor and another box arrived. This was back before we went on vacation in July. I told him I wanted to make sure we didn’t run out. He asked me about 5 times how long I was going to be gone. I’m using up all the raw I stockpiled in the freezer too.

  • Pattyvaughn

    I feed about 5 cups a day in addition to raw, so a big bag doesn’t last me that long, so fortunately I can still save. LOL! If you call it saving when you feed that much. This time last year, I was feeding half that amount… sigh…

  • Betsy Greer

    I so get this! I don’t know if they do or not, but I get bored long before they make it to the bottom of any size bag of food.

  • Storm’s Mom

    I’m toooooooootally feeling like that right now!! Storm’s about 1/3 through a big bag of Go! Turkey, and then I’ve got a big bag of Wholesome Blend GF Turf waiting in the bullpen/fridge. He only eats about a cup a day …I’m getting impatient haha …so I’ll probably sneak in a 5lb’er or someting before too long ;-) ..and refrain from buying big bags in the future!!! Savings be darned, it’s just not worth it!!! ;-)

  • Pattyvaughn

    I have a couple weeks more of open food then I’m going to try Nature’s Logic and see how my crew does on it. I can’t wait!! Sometimes I wish my dogs ate more so I could try new foods sooner.

  • Storm’s Mom

    True. But the positives far outweigh the negative for me/Storm, thankfully :-)

  • Pattyvaughn

    That’s the only thing I don’t like about NL.

  • Storm’s Mom

    Bah, you’re right!! Sorry about that, I was thinking it was a single protein source formula!! Hope the NV LID Rabbit works for you!!

  • Julie

    NL Rabbit has turkey meal, chicken liver spray, and other ingredients that make it too risky (dog has problems with poultry). The Beef kibble won’t work either (my dog reacts bad to sardines). My cat however is a big fan of the canned NL cat food! Thx for the suggestion though. The NV LI Rabbit is not at PetCo but the guy at a specialty pet store near me said he’ll order it for me. If I get it, I’ll post how my dog does on the NV LI Rabbit.

  • Storm’s Mom

    Nature’s Logic also has a Rabbit formula that you might want to check out.

  • Julie

    Is this new?: NVI GF LI RABBIT!!! It’s rabbit meal, tapioca and peas. I think this is could be a really great product for my allergy dog. Usually the LID rabbit formulas are made with potatoes (not good if your dog doesn’t do potatoes).

  • somebodysme

    It certainly all just depends on the individual dog just as certain people can eat one thing and not another, the same is true with our dogs.

  • somebodysme

    Yes that one is definitely on my “want to try” list!

  • somebodysme

    Sorry Julie that I didn’t say what food, I hate that when someone doesn’t say…HAHAHA! SO the food that we got for her to try is Natural Balance LID Potato and Rabbit. I realize it’s not the highest of quality food but I am/was desperate to try something else and I’d tried so many others. Once I saw she was doing so well on the potato and rabbit food, I went through every ingredient of every food we had tried since she broke out in a rash and of those foods, the only one single constant ingredient was just PEAS. She was originally on Purina Pro Plan from the rescue group we got her from the Chicken Savor one and she did NOT have any rash and her coat was beautiful when we first got her. Of course I wasn’t happy with a Purina food so I just had to switch and all we got after that was terrible results. At the time, I just didn’t realize dogs could be allergic to so many so called healthy ingredients! It’s mind boggling! GAH!

  • InkedMarie

    I thought about that, too. Get rid of potato, add peas or tapioca….time will tell

  • Storm’s Mom

    Nature’s Logic is pea-free, if you’re looking for options.

  • Storm’s Mom

    I worry that peas will become the new chicken in terms of dogs being intolerant/allergic to it due to overexposure :-(

  • Julie

    Which pea free food are you using? Thx.

  • Cyndi

    Glad you figured out the problem. I can imagine how frustrating it’s been for you.

  • somebodysme

    Update to an update (HA!) Well what we finally figured out my dog is allergic to is PEAS! This food has peas after tapioca which I believe is why she was doing a wee bit better than on some other foods because it doesn’t have as much peas as the other foods we tried. I’ve found that most “high quality” grain-free foods have lots of peas(second or third ingredient!). This caused her to have a rash all over her back and tail and also a rash all over her paws. Once we put her on a PEA FREE food, the rash just vanished before my eyes! Please, if your dog seems to be having lots of problems since you’ve switched to a “higher quality” grain free food, please consider it could be the peas. Hope this helps someone!!!!! I wish I’d known that PEAS could be such an issue!

  • Michelle

    The amount of green tea given in the study on dogs was not extreme. Since we know that green tea extract can kill dogs, I would like to know if the maker’s of instinct have done any studies on the effects of long-term exposure to green tea at the dose they are supplying in their dog food.

  • Chelsea v.

    I contacted Natures Variety on the issue with green tea extract. I was pretty concerned reading about this since this is the only food my allergy prone Catahoula Leopard Dog can eat without having bowel upsets or scratch and bite her paws more then normal. This food keeps her regular and her allergy symptoms to a minimum.. Here’s what they responded with….

    Chelsea,

    Thank you for writing.

    Green tea is rich in antioxidants known polyphenols. Antioxidants assist the body in neutralizing harmful free radicals that result from the normal metabolism as well as environmental exposures. Free radicals, if not neutralized, can harm a body’s cells leading to disease and other negative effects. Adding green tea polyphenols supplies your pet with added protection against free radical damage.

    As with many ingredients, in large doses some ingredients can have adverse effects over a prolonged period of time. We use green tea extract in very small amounts and certainly not in amounts that would be toxic.

    Sincerely,
    Scott
    Consumer Relations
    Nature’s Variety

  • Michelle

    I did some research on green tea extract and dogs. It has been found to cause mortality. No wonder my dog went bonkers. I am really glad I took her off of this stuff. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2687403/

  • Michelle

    I switched her to Go! Sensitivity and Shine and she has calmed down now. It was like she was on speed before…she was acting completely wired. One night she just paced around for the whole night. I think she was especially sensitive to something in this food…possibly the green tea extract (caffeine?). Why put that in dog food anyhow?

  • Eileen

    Both of my dogs fell extremely ill, and I believe it is due to the Limited Ingredient Turkey– one had to go on an IV in emergency. I would advise caution to anyone feeding a recent batch of this food. I did email the manufacturer and also my local PetCo about it.

  • Betsy Greer

    I doubt there would be such a sufficient amount of it in the product that it would cause a reaction like that.

    My first thought is, she probably feels better and has found her inner puppy. : )

  • Michelle

    My dog has a sensitive stomach and the vet suspected food allergies. I switched to Instinct’s grain free Turkey (one protein source for sensitive stomachs). My dog is not throwing up anymore but she is now a complete hyper basket-case. Is it the green tree extract?

  • Jessica Leanna Taft

    try natural balance lamb & rice :)

  • katrice

    Oh, and our dog also developed a bladder infection. The vet said that it was probably due to her concentrated urine. She was on a two week round of antibiotics.

  • katrice

    Interesting that you mention your grass dying. When our dog was on this food her urine was so concentrated that our grass died everywhere she peed. I’m not talking about the grass gradually dying. Her urine worked better than Roundup for killing grass. My thoughts are that her urine was so concentrated from not drinking, that it was toxic. I wonder how her kidneys were coping. We also added a lot of water to her food to make sure she got some fluid in her diet, because she completely stopped drinking water for four days.

  • somebodysme

    UPDATE: I wanted to update this because I had suspected that NV LID Turkey could have been the cause of my dog’s skin turning black/darkening. NV was not the cause of her skin turning black/dark. I think that it is the dying off of yeast and the probiotic was causing her skin to turn black from the dying off of yeast. I had stopped giving her the probiotic as an experiment to see if there was a problem with that too (allergy issues galore with my dog). The stopping of the probiotic is why the skin lightened up…it also began to stink like cheetos too and felt oily. Started giving the probiotic again and the skin is once again blackening and the stink of sour cheeto smell has totally gone. So in this case, the black skin is a good thing.

    I am not going to feed NV though, it just was not working out for her. The stench of her feces is enough to stop feeding this food. It was actually so bad that our yard was attracting huge amounts of black flies! It was crazy bad!

  • Kathi Crawley

    I had the same exact problem a few weeks ago. Called the company and was advised that the ash content for this food is anywhere from 8 to 15% and varies from bag to bag. My vet advised me to change foods since the second bag was probably too high in ash. Tried nutro grain free vension and potato but my havanese developed yeast problems – probably allergic to potato. Now she is being fed Precise Sensicare (lamb and brown rice) – only second day but seems to be doing well.

  • InkedMarie

    thats a good idea too. Boone likes poopsicles, does that count? LOL

  • somebodysme

    I did notice that my dog was not drinking as much water when she was on this food also, not as bad as you describe but enough that I decided to start soaking one meal a day in water so she would get more water. Her stool was firm and sometimes she had to strain. Now that she in on a different food, the drinking is more like you’d expect and stool is firm but not real hard. The odd thing is you would think that with really firm stool, it would help keep the gland clean but she was having a problem with leaking in her sleep. That has also gone away. OH and the grass was dying everywhere that she would urinate, that too has stopped on a different food.

  • Pattyvaughn

    When I have to pop open a can, I freeze the rest in ice cube trays and throw them in a zip lock bag for later use, all nicely portioned out. My dogs like to eat pumpkinsicles.

  • InkedMarie

    Ech have had one or two times of straining but that’s it.

  • InkedMarie

    I really should have known that!

  • Pattyvaughn

    If they are pooping regular without too much effort then I would say you don’t have a problem. If they are straining or seem constipated/irregular, then you might want to add some form of fiber to ease things along.

  • http://www.dfwpugs.com/ sandy

    canned pumpkin

  • InkedMarie

    So, I have one on LID & one on Boost. Both are eating it once daily but pooping hard formed balls. Is it best o add omething to the kibble to stop this?

  • Pattyvaughn

    Then that would definitely explain it.

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Oh that’s too bad. I’ve been avoiding salad like the plague.

  • Katrice

    This type of clay does not become slimey. It can absorb a tremendous amount of water and remain firm.

  • Pattyvaughn

    I may have to find some bentonite for myself. I’ve about decided I have that cyclospora infection from Olive Garden. I’ve been treating myself naturally and have not had any serious problems, but I still haven’t completely shaken it either.

  • Hound Dog Mom

    This would make sense – I know betonite is used as a de-toxing agent. Just read an article on this somewhere, can’t remember off the top of my head.

    I do also remember reading on Nature’s Logic’s website that it’s a natural anti-caking agent and allows companies to avoid the use of un-natural alternatives for this purpose and that it also contains trace nutrients. Just checked Nature’s Variety’s site and they claim it’s used for its anti-caking properties as well.

    I do know there is some concern with the use of montmorollonite due to potential contamination with dioxins.

    I’ve fed both Nature’s Variety Instinct and Nature’s Logic which contain montmorollonite and Gus didn’t have any issues with either..

  • Pattyvaughn

    I just read something that said antidiarrheal clays pull toxic diarrhea causing substances from the stomach and intestines, but they may also pull enzymes and nutrients out too. I wonder if foods that commonly have montmorillonite clay in them were causing diarrhea so they added that.

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Lol I have no idea how it works but I do know that one time Gus got ahold of a packet of about 20 tablets of pro pectalin (long story), ate them all, couldn’t poop for about three days and when he did it was dry little pellets.

  • Pattyvaughn

    I know that, but what I don’t know is why. Do they slow down passage through the large intestine so that there is more time for resorption to occur, or do they “set up” or is it something else…

    Now you’re getting a truer picture of what I’m really like. I have to know WHY!!!

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Clay dries the stool – most anti-diarrheals (like pro-pectalin) contain clay.

  • Pattyvaughn

    But the clay would still be in the stool so the water is still there. I wonder if a property of this clay would be how firm it is when wet. Maybe it doesn’t get slimey when wet like other clays.
    I know that this type of clay is used in some antidiarrheals to firm up the stool, so I can see that it is possible for it to make the stool too firm, I’m just incessantly curious about the whys of things.

  • Katrice

    I think the clay absorbs any fluid that would normally be retained in the stool, making the stool extremely dry and hard.

  • Jan_Mom2Cavs

    When I fed the food, my dogs also had some problems. Even my Mixed Breed, who’s never had anal gland issues or constipation issues. All 3 became constipated. Their stool would come out in little round, hard, marble-like balls (sorry for the grossness lol!). While I think I preferred this to diarrhea, the straining was a problem. I also thought it might be the clay and the high ash content. It could’ve maybe been the green tea extract….that was something no other food has had in it. Who knows really, but it did not work for my dogs.

  • Pattyvaughn

    I would expect it to have the opposite effect and cause fluid to be retained in the stool just like psyllium does. I wonder why that would not be the case.

  • Katrice

    We fed our 2 year old dog Nature’s Variety Instinct Dry food a few months ago, for several weeks. Her bowel movements became very dry, almost like powder. She totally stopped drinking water, and would go as long as 15 hours without peeing. She also became very lethargic. She had foul smelling breath, and extremely dark, and strong smelling urine. After reading the ingredients listed on the Nature’s Variety LID package, and seeing montmorillonite clay listed, we did some reading to see if this could be causing her problems. Industrially montmorillonite clay is used as a desiccant to remove moisture from air and gases. Montmorillonite swells with the addition of water. My husband, who is a geologist confirmed that because of Montmorillonite clay’s ability to absorb moisture, allowing it to swell many times it’s volume, it is used as a natural agent for splitting rocks in stone quarries. I have no doubt this ingredient caused major problems for our dog. We have since switched her to another dog food, and she is once again drinking a normal volume of water. Her stool has returned to normal, and she is peeing at a regular interval. I wonder if anyone else has experienced the same problems while their dog was on this particular food.

  • somebodysme

    I ended up being able to return the unused portion of the bag. Something else I didn’t mention is that when I first opened to large bag of food, the first thing I noticed was that the shape of the kibble was different than the kibble that I had gotten in the 4 lb bags. It was flat on top and also the bag was full of crumbs (for lack of a better word) as if it were from the bottom of the barrel and I got an old bag of scrap…HA! You know, for $72 they could do better! But the big thing that I had not noticed until I’d fed this bag for a couple weeks was that it had been ripped opened on the side and taped up. I’m sure we can’t blame NV for that, probably got ripped up in transit…SO who knows how long that could have happened so it’s possible that bag was not fresh anymore. She is right now on Zignature Lamb but it’s really too soon to tell…so far so good though.

  • Pattyvaughn

    Or just to know that there are other options out there!

  • Pattyvaughn

    Definitely check, but don’t be surprised if the bags don’t read any differently, labeling laws being what they are.

  • Pattyvaughn

    She could easily have multiple triggers and still have the exact same results.

  • Pattyvaughn

    If you want to know for sure, if he does well on the Zignature, wait a few weeks for all symptoms to subside, then give him some Turkey sandwich meat for a few days in a row and see if he starts having symptoms again

  • beaglemom

    Absolutely, you have to do what works best for your crew! A great thing about this board is our ability to share both the good AND bad experiences with a food. Hopefully it helps others make better decisions.

  • somebodysme

    She’s been on a bunch of different foods trying to find something that didn’t make her scratch. Nothing over a long time though and I just got her in December and she’s only 18 months old. I can’t think of anything that would have been common of all the dog foods she’s been on. I’ll have to sit down and think hard about that and look at ingredients. And she had never eaten anything turkey before the NV LID.

  • Storm’s Mom

    What were you feeding before the NV LID Turkey? Pattyvaughn mentioned black skin is a sign of long term irritation, so 6 weeks might not be long enough for the irritation to develop just from the NV LID Turkey. If we know what previous foods you’ve fed, we might be able to help you determine some common ingredients that you might’ve actually been feeding over the long term. In answer to your turkey vs tapioca question, though, of those 2 options, my money would be on the turkey.

  • somebodysme

    You know, something else I was thinking is that she was doing really good on it when I bought the small bags to test out but it seems like it changed when I got a big bag. Even the kibble looked different in the big bag than the small bag.

    I should check and see if any ingredients changed, I still have the empty bag.

  • somebodysme

    This Zignature is very limited ingredients too and has no Tapioca and is lamb. I wonder if it would be more logical if it were the turkey OR the tapioca? Of course it could be something else. ACK!

  • InkedMarie

    that is very weird

  • Jan_Mom2Cavs

    beaglemom….I also had problems using Nature’s Variety LIDs. I was using the Turkey at first. Then tried the Duck and Lamb. I also top with canned food for every meal and even add in a little water. All 3 of mine (2 Cavs and my Mixed Breed) got constipated from eating it. It started causing itching and anal gland problems. I switched to Acana Lamb but I still wasn’t happy. Finally put them on Holistic Select Anchovy and things are much better, though not as good as they were when feeding Natural Balance. I’m honestly thinking about going back to Natural Balance, which was what they were on and doing really, really well, but when I heard about the merger I was adamant about not using it any more. This is when things began to go down hill. :( I’m sorry, but I just want a food that makes my babies feel good and if that means Natural Balance, so be it.

  • Pattyvaughn

    That sounds like a reaction to one of the ingredients in the NV LID. Skin turning black is a sign of long term irritation.

  • somebodysme

    Any ideas of what would cause my dog’s skin to start turning black after being on NV LID Turkey for about a month and a half? I decided to change to Zignature Lamb formula and some of the small issues she was still having on NV cleared right up and now her skin is turning back to regular color…STRANGE! Aside from the blackening of her skin, she still had a slight bit of redness in one ear and slight discharge from one eye on the same side as the one pink ear. Also her “waste” smelled like animals had died in our yard in the bag I put it in. The trash guys probably thought I had dead people parts in my garbage…HAHAHA! It really was THAT BAD though!

  • beaglemom

    Thanks for sharing. I’ve used multiple bags of the LID in the past (duck, turkey, lamb) with no trouble. I always mix it with something though (canned, raw, dehydrated) so maybe that made a difference. Every dog is different so it’s important to find what works for you. I’d suggest investigating some other brands besides Nutro – rotation between foods, even a little, is beneficial for all dogs since no food is perfect.

  • Kathi Crawley

    I fed my havanese LID Lamb for the last three months. She was doing fine until six days ago – she lost interest in the food – would only eat a few bites and stopped drinking water. I did open a new bag and thought maybe there was something wrong with the food. She would vomit right after she ate. Took her to the vet and also took a stool sample. My vet advised me that her stool was way too firm and that I should change her food. The vet suggested Nutro grain free venison and potato – since she has had luck with this food for dogs with allergies. My dog has been eating this food for two days – drinking water and her stools are much better. Just wanted to note that I contacted Nature’s Variety to determine the percentage of ash in their food and was advised that it is between 8 to 15% and can vary from bag to bag because the food is “all natural”. My vet feels that the ash content could have been the problem for my dog and she also advised me that in her opinion any food with an ash content of over 9 is not good.

  • Pattyvaughn

    Plain yogurt has very few strains of probiotics. You can look for kefir by the yogurt. It is a yogurt like drink that has many more different strains of probiotics. You can also order from Swanson’s online. Their Dr Stephen Langer probiotics are great and their digestive enzymes are good too. They have excellent prices and often have sales. Don’t give the Firm Up and the pumpkin both, too much is as bad as not enough as far as soft stools go.

  • Karen

    Yes, they get a scoop of pumpkin at each meal. I have not done probiotics, but do add plain yogurt. (But I could definitely be more consistent with the yogurt than I am.) I have also been trying a new product I found called “Firm Up” to see if that works. After a lot of research part of me wonders if she doesn’t have chronic pancreatitis or something that my vet just keeps missing. Do you have a good probiotic you would recommend?

  • Pattyvaughn

    Are you giving probiotics and digestive enzymes? Sometimes when changing to a food that has a lot more protein, dogs bodies seem to have trouble adjusting to the increased demands on their digestive system. Usually after a couple weeks of digestive enzymes and rebalancing the gut with probiotics things get better and the body catches up. Also have you tried adding pure pumpkin? Sometimes adding a little fiber straightens everything out.

  • Karen

    Thanks all, I’ve seen in other forums that other people mentioned this when feeding their dogs this food also. It must be the high protein and fat. It did seem they drank less over the weekend so perhaps they are adjusting. I’m not sure this food will work long term either, my little retriever mix is still experiencing loose stools and I think I may need to find something that is a little “softer” on her stomach than the high protein and fat. Aside from her allergies I believe she may have a sensitive tummy. And yes, we’ve been to the vet 15 times in the last two months to find the solution to the issue and it never gets any better, his solutions always seem to have my back in a day or two and shelling out another $100-$200 and buying expensive prescription food that seems to make her skin allergies worse. He also suggested I feed her Purina. Now that I’m broke and she’s still not totally better I think I need to find the solution on my own.

  • InkedMarie

    HDM, I responded below to Karen but Boone drinks alot after eating Brothers. Thy get kibble in the afternoon but sometimes they get raw. When that happens, he doesn’t drink alot after eating it. Go figure

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Hi Karen -

    If the intake in water consumption really is “drastic”, please call your vet as soon as possible and discuss this. Polydipsia (increased water consumption) can be an early indication of serious problems – usually with the kidneys. I have switched foods many times and never noticed an increase in water consumption. It may very well be nothing, and hopefully it is, but it would be best to get a professional opinion. Your vet may advise a urinalysis or blood panel to rule out any medical causes.

  • InkedMarie

    I’ll have to get back to you on the drinking. My pbgv has been on Brothers for over a year & drinks alot of water afterwords. We just switched ompletely to NV lid turkey; I’ll be curious to see if his water consumption changes

  • Pattyvaughn

    Wait and see if it levels off in a few days. Some dogs require more water to process more protein, some dogs adjust drinking habits as they adjust to any new food(soft stools mean the body is losing more water). I wouldn’t worry unless you are seeing something else too.

  • Karen

    After months of issues with my dogs having bloody/mucousy diaharrea, itchy skin, yeast infections and not eating, I have finally found this food and they seem to not only be eating it, but improving. (Although their stool is still occassionally soft, but hey, its only been a week.) Anyway, as soon as I started feeding the LID Duck meal I noticed a drastic increase in their water drinking. I do wet the kibble slightly and add pumpkin. Has anyone else experienced this and should I be concerned?

  • InkedMarie

    You’re welcome, the list comes in handy

  • Kathi Crawley

    Thanks Sandy – she has been on the food for two months now and is doing well. She does not seem to be constipated but her stools are small and very firm.

  • boxers1

    How cool…I just learned something…thanks so much

  • CrazyWeimLady

    I am about to try the newest addition to this line of Nature’s Variety Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet…Rabbit. My Weim is allergic to everything. He’s eaten most highly rated foods, including Canidae and Pure Vita and many many others. His vet is pushing me to put him on Hills ZD and I am refusing. It’s garbage. Anyway, I had to hunt and hunt to find someone to special order this new formula. I’ve never tried any of their food and this Rabbit one is SO expensive. Rabbit is one of the only proteins left to try. I’m really hoping it works. Anyone have experience with this particular formula? I notice it’s not listed up top there with the formulas…

  • InkedMarie

    If you go over to the forums, then Dog Food Ingredients sub forum, you will find a stickie at the top with a list of grain/white potato free foods

  • boxers1

    Thanks so much

  • somebodysme

    I just switched my dog with allergies to NV LID Turkey and she LOVES it. No matter what else I try and give her, she seems to have an allergic reaction to it. She is doing really well on this food. She has been on it about a month.

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Go! is a Petcurean brand, manufactured in Ontario, Canada.

  • boxers1

    It’s tough finding a formula w/o potatoes. I wish they’d replace white potatoes with sweet potatoes…so much more nutritious

  • boxers1

    I will most definitely investigate the Go! food (who makes this?) and grain free/potato free is right up our alley. Boxers are not picky dogs at all. My experience is that when they don’t eat something it’s because something is wrong

  • Storm’s Mom

    Hi Jane, I’ve fed the Turkey LID with good results. It sounds like you might be in Canada… another option that might be a good one to try is Go!’s new grain-free, potato-free turkey formula. It’s got slightly higher protein and lower fat than NV LID Turkey..and likely cheaper than NV. And it’s Canadian :-)

  • InkedMarie

    Sorry, wasn’t done. My dog did fine on it which is why I ordered it again. He didnt need to lose any weight though. The only “diet” food I’ve used that I liked was Wellness Core reduced fat but I’m pretty sure it has potatoes

  • InkedMarie

    Hi Jane! Yes, I’ve fed it & just got a bag on sale, online, last week!

  • boxers1

    Does anyone here feed the NV Instinct Limited Ingredient Turkey? I have been feeding Acana Burbank Potato and Chicken. It’s a fine food but I would love a product like that with no white potatoes in hopes to lower the glycemic index. I have fed mostly grain free products for many years now but if I do decide to enter in a bit of grain (carbs really)then I stay with a Canadian food (Champion or Horizon) for the best quality available (IMO). I am feeding this to a UK import bobtail Boxer who is soon to be 6 years old and even at 2/3 C twice a day tends to hold on to every calorie. She is not fat but I’d like to see 2-3 pounds slip away. I’d enjoy hearing feedback for all of you

    Jane Edenfield

  • InkedMarie

    If anyone orders NV Instinct LID diets, Chewy dot com is having a nice sale, til the 14th. I got a large bag of the turkey for $52.49, free shipping!

  • Michelle Mendoza

    I found it! thanks!

  • Michelle Mendoza

    Thanks! that’s a good advice! I’m going to try another formula before switching to another brand.

  • Storm’s Mom

    Which formula are you trying? If the duck, maybe try the lamb, etc etc.

  • Pattyvaughn

    Go up to the top of this page and in the red bar find Library and click on it. Look for an article on hypoallergenic foods. It has several brands you can try.

  • Michelle Mendoza

    I bought this food because my dog was allergic to purina dog chow and my vet recommended this one. The HUGE problem is that my dog HATES it and don’t want to eat it. Are there any other limited ingredient foods I can try? or with what can I mix this food so my dog likes it and eat it?

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  • Betsy Greer

    I suggested the same thing to a friend at work, whose mother’s elderly pup had lost most of her teeth ~ it worked like a charm. I’ve tried Abady granular previously and it’s basically a very similar consistency to kibble that’s been given a whirl in the food processor. It definitely has it’s place. : )

  • somebodysme

    Yeah I know what you mean…maybe someone else will get a tip from it…I’ve found with my new doggie that necessity is the mother of invention…HAHA!

  • Jan_Mom2Cavs

    Thanks for the tip…I could do that but would rather just have a food they all can eat. I’d do it as a last resort. Imho, so far this food is actually working a little better than the 4Health anyway. AND it should at twice the cost LOL!

  • somebodysme

    We are liking NV LID Turkey too for my allergy dog…knock on wood! Jan, just a crazy wild idea about the 4health, could you put it in a food processor and chop it smaller…just a wild thought.

  • nectarmom

    We just started the NV LID Rabbit and all of mine are doing well with it mixed with the Brothers Turkey and egg. I like the kibble size too of the NV. We also have the NV LID Turkey on order to try soon too. The NV LID Rabbit is a very dark colored kibble though . almost black. I am also giving them Mercola Krill oil on their kibble every day, once a day and so far so good. Scratching isn’t totally gone but it is not as bad as it was :) We are getting there hopefully and my girls all had their tea tree and aloe baths this morning and coats are looking fantastic. Happy fur mommy :)

  • InkedMarie

    Boone did very well on the NV lid, too!

  • Jan_Mom2Cavs

    Well….it looks like I’ve found our new kibble! I almost was afraid to post as I didn’t want to jinx us LOL! Anyway, the girls have been on the NV LID Turkey for a week now without incident. They all love it, topped or dry, the kibble is a good size (even for Laverne), no stomach upsets, stools are great. I have still been topping the kibble with canned (lately I’ve mostly been using Wellness Stews, Prairie Homestyle, Wellness 95%, Blue Family Favorites/Stews. I would use Instinct cans but they are even too pricey for me at over 4.00 a can!! I was so hoping the 4Health grainfree would work but Laverne just couldn’t get past the larger kibble size. If they ever make a smaller kibble size I’ll try it again. I know a week isn’t that long to be able to tell if the food is truly working but so far it’s been great and I could tell with others I tried in this length of time. I’m keeping my fingers crossed!

  • somebodysme

    I see canola oil as an ingredient on their website as of 6-24-2013

  • http://www.dfwpugs.com/ sandy

    montmorillonite and bentonite can be found in several foods. They are supposed to absorb toxins. The high ash content can cause constipation in some dogs. There is an article about ash in the Library. You can add a little canned pumpkin to the kibble to help with stools. You can even mix in a little Grandma Lucy’s Pureformance or Artisan Lamb to the food to offset some of the ash content. grandmalucys.com

  • Kathi Crawley

    My havanese has been fed many different foods – she has serious skin allergies. She has been on NV Instinct LID Lamb for a month – loves the food and she is not chewing or scratching. Only concern I have is the ingredient montmorillonite clay. Have not seen this ingredient in any other dog food and am concerned if the food is considered to have a high ash content which I have heard can be harmful to dogs.

  • annie

    i will try add pumpkin. hard to find a “perfect ” food for her. . high fat & protein would not harm seniors except special condition a.thank you very much for helping.in that case, we got more choice now.

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Hi Linda -

    If you’re looking for a more reasonably priced grain-free food that’s comparable in quality I’d suggest checking out Earthborn, they have some varieties without chicken, beef or pork.

  • http://www.facebook.com/linda.irwin.9 Linda Irwin

    I have had my dogs on this food for a year although they are doing well I am looking to change due to price.I have a small breed and have found my dogs don’t really like the food.As far as stool goes because we all feed a grain free food I have replaced the fiber by using sweet potato cooked with the skin on it replaces the fiber in their diet.Even though I only feed a 1/4 cup morning and night this bag only last me 3 weeks I also supplement with Trippett tripe .If your dog is having issues with allergies this is a great food I have one with a chicken problem and one with beef and pork problem and at the time this food was ideal worked well.

  • http://www.dfwpugs.com/ sandy

    My seniors were eating regular Instinct without the hard stools. You can add some pumpkin purée to their food. It helps with both loose and hard stools. Mine also eat raw food that I grind with the skin on. Their tool is small and formed and turns ashy.

  • annie

    umm.. we will just reduce the portion to control the calorie intake then.we actually start feeding our senior this formula 2 days ago with uncertainty, she becomes a lot more energetic,but aggressive too. we were truly worried, as she used to be on a grain based food and the pet shop keeps warning us that it is of 2 times fat content than food made esp for seniors. like many people experienced, when we feed her nv LID,she got hard, powdered pools, i was thinking is it because of the over expected fat content that makes her not digest well.now i think that shouldn’t be a problem a. my only concern now is that the protein comes from meals, does it consider ” good protein souce ” for seniors or it just doesn’t matter.anyway we will give it a try ! thank u hound dog mom,u must hv happy dogs at home.

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Hi annie –

    Instinct is a wonderful food, I’d give it a try and see how your dog does. The high protein levels will benefit senior dogs as seniors actually need up to 50% more protein than adult dogs. As senior dogs age they become less efficient at metabolizing protein, yet their dietary requirement for amino acids doesn’t decrease so they need more quality protein to compensate. Some senior foods have lower levels of fat than adult foods because fat is more calorie-dense (9 kcal. per gram) than protein and carbohydrates (4 kcal. per gram) and calorie requirements tend to decrease with age. As long as you adjust portion sizes accordingly to account for feeding a more calorie-dense food, the fat shouldn’t cause an issue. My senior (will be 8 in 2 months) eats a homemade raw diet of between 45% and 55% protein and 25% – 40% fat daily. He’s healthy, active and lean.

  • annie

    anyone feed instinct LID for small breed over 7 ? need advise. most senior food are with fat level around 10 percent. i don’t know if instinct it suitable for our furry kid who just turned 7 and never been on high protein/fat food.

  • Jc

    I feed my min pin NV I raw kibble, can, dry turkey@duck, dry LI turkey or lamb. I do not give her any chicken or rice. Before I switch to NV BRAND she had bad allergies extreamly dry skin and many other problems. Now her allergies are much better and only seem to show up if it is extreamly dry day after playing in the park( I live in Cal) her skin is great the rest of her problems are gone. If her stools are real loose for 2 days or more I give her ( fiber) pumpkin or squash to bind. 2 times a week I give her a little extra virgin coconut oil so she has no problem passing her stools due to dryness. EVC also has other great benifits, she also gets vegetarian probiotics @ enzymes to help with the digestion of the food in her gut. Sounds like a lot but its not and all of the things I mentioned I also eat

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Fowl (excluding chicken) and pork aren’t common allergens and aren’t proteins dogs are commonly exposed to – making them good choices for limited ingredient diets. The most common allergens for dogs are beef, chicken, eggs, corn, wheat, soy and milk.

  • Lisa

    Try staying away from any fowl, poultry, beef and pork as a large number of digs have allergies to these proteins. My dogs are LID Lamb and they are doing very well with their allergies.

  • Digitalcassidy

    Try Canine Caviar. They have a “Special Needs” food. It really helped my Bull Terrier.

  • Digitalcassidy

    Try Canine Caviar. Higher Ash levels will make hard poops. CC levels are right on.

  • Digitalcassidy

    Watch out for ANY form of yeast too. My Bull Terrier is super allergic to yeast. It took me months to figure that out. CC does not contain any yeast and works wonders for her pure white coat. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1140685339 Betsy Greer

    The beauty of rotation is avoiding constant / prolonged exposure to questionable ingredients. While some come pretty close, there’s really not a perfect commercial food. Balanced raw is as close as you’ll get to perfect.

  • Sue

     In researching foods, I found this article:
    “Sodium Selenite in Dog Food — Vital Nutrient or Dangerous Toxin? by Mike Sagman.  It’s amazing how many foods have this ingredient, including many that I was considering.  Now to find one that doesn’t have it. I’ll let you know.  Yup, NVI LI has it too.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1140685339 Betsy Greer

    It’s totally fine to rotate flavors within a brand AND between brands. It’s better for Lexee and will keep her from getting bored also. : )

  • sharron

    Hi Betsy:

    thanks – i’ve been told in the past that i should keep her on the same brand but rotate between flavors

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1140685339 Betsy Greer

    Hi Sharron,

    I think they’re both great choices. If she likes and does well on both, why not rotate between brands and proteins. You’re avoiding prolonged exposure to potentially problematic ingredients and giving her a wider variety of beneficial nutrients.

  • sharron

    Hi

    opinions please on Nature’s Variety Limited Ingredient dry-turkey, lamb or duck or Acana Regionals grain free – not sure what she is sensitive to either it’s chicken or grains or both – she is now eating Acana Ranchlands which has neither in it and she isn’t going after her paws. Is one better than the other or are they very similar – just wondering when it comes time to buy a new bag of food

    thanks alot

  • http://www.dfwpugs.com/ sandy

    I would pick out a food that doesn’t contain grains or white potatoes.  It can be regular (Back to Basics, Brothers, Instinct, Nutrisca) or it could be limited or few ingredient (Instinct LID, Pioneer Naturals, Great Life Rx LID, Grandma Lucy’s Pureformance) and if you’re open to other options even try a raw frozen or raw freeze dried or dehydrated food (Instinct, Stella & Chewy’s, Only Natural Pet Grain Free MaxMeat).  There’s even a new food called DNA that is dehydrated and looks like croutons when dry and you can rehydrate it (texture reminds me of fruit cake when hydrated) or serve it dry.  

    Wellness recipes are mostly potato-based and their grain free stews still contain some potato although I use it intermittently.  But to clear up my dog’s “allergy” problem I went with a grain free/white potato free food for at least 6 months.  I was using Blue Buffalo Wilderness and Wellness Core Ocean before and he still had a problem.

    If you visit the forum here on DFA there is a list of these grain and potato free foods under “dog food ingredient”.

    I also give my dogs probiotics and fish oil (among other things).

  • Linette Basso

    My 4 year old mix terrier and shih tzu has had issues with skin problems since we rescued him at 4 weeks old. I normally comes and goes but in the last 3 months it won’t clear up. I have had him on Wellness wet and dry for awhile now. Last night the vet decided he needed to be on a prescription food Hills ZD. I am not fond of Hills foods at all, any suggestion would be greatly appreciated!!! 

  • spoiled

    I think it needs more fiber

  • Spoiled

    One of my dogs having a hard time with the limited diets as well straining trying the othe grain free her poops were soft and smelly .Since i am working on a food trial we my other dog i just put them both on the prescription diet for the time being.

  • Jerry

    Thanks for the feedback. She’s 9 lbs and takes her a while to go through a bag, so I guess we were surprised she wasn’t adjusted by the end of the first bag. We switched her to Blue Freedom before coming back to Instinct LID, so we’re trying to slowly build up the protein content while staying grain free. Will probably be using Core Ocean next, hope it works!

  • BryanV21

    With just about any change in food, but especially with the jump in protein from the Prairie to the Instinct, it’s no surprise to see some loose stool or diarrhea. I’m glad you stuck with it though.

  • Jerry

    My small breed did fine on various types of NV’s Prairie line. We went grain free to Instinct Turkey and Duck and her stool became inconsistent. We then tried Instinct Beef and Lamb and her stool was very loose/soft and soon she refused to eat it. We went off the brand for a rotation and then gave it a shot again with Limited Ingredient Lamb. We’re about 3 weeks in and she’s doing great on it, always eating the whole dish and having normal stool. Very happy with this product so far.

  • Bobbye

    This is the first food my dog has gone and gobbled up. and its good for her allergies

  • APBT

    I’m starting my dogs on this LID Lamb, wanted to read some reviews and ran into this one. I’m not sure if any of you guys have ever fed a raw diet to your dogs, the hard stool and them not going as regular sounds just like when they eat raw.

    It sounds to me like their bodies are absorbing most of the nutrients in this kibble, making them poop less hard and ashy.

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  • Valerie

    I had my 6 yr old English Setter on this for around 6 weeks, he did well with the exception of rock hard stool.  I did use pumpkin which helped, but I was also concerned about the 12% ash content.  Most dog foods have around 7 to 8-1/2% ash.  I stopped feeding and am now trying Annamaet grain free Aqualuk, which he seem to be doing well on.

  • Kikikahn

     I have been feeding my shelty limited formula for about 3 months.  She is sensitive to lamb, potatoes, and grains.  Have her on limited formula Turkey.  She has been doing very well on it, but my 14-year-old cocker spaniel not so much.  He is extremely gassy.  Too much protein and straining to potty.  The pumpkin is a good idea, but I’m switching the cocker to something else.  Trying Sojos.

  • http://www.dfwpugs.com/ sandy

    Kspeigh,

    Avoderm Revolving Menu and Innova Prime are also single source protein foods that are grain free and potato free.

  • Kspeigh

    I have been adding pumpkin to the food. My dog is not a huge fan of it but it seems to help a little. I ordered Nutrisca, the salmon formula, and have started mixing that in with her food and it hasn’t seemed to bother her yet. Hopefully it won’t because there aren’t many ingredients in it. She seems to be sensitive to chicken, turkey, potatoes, and grains. I hope Nature’s Variety will do something to this food soon to fix the constipation problem because otherwise it’s a great product!

  • http://www.dfwpugs.com/ sandy

    Wysong Epigen claims to be starch free. I’ve used the Epigen Fish before and use it as a topper.

    http://www.wysongepigen.net

  • http://www.dfwpugs.com/ sandy

    Kspeigh,

    Maybe you can mix another food that you like in with it to dilute it a bit.  One of my dogs had some GI issues a while back and a mixture of foods fixed it.

  • Acoyle

    I am glad to hear your story as I have a one year old boxer who is having the same constipation problems on the turkey/duck NV that your dog is having. It has been the only food to help with her food allergy(not sure what all she is allergic to yet), but I have to add a tablespoon of pumpkin to each meal so that she is having somewhat normal stools. I don’t want to add pumpkin to her food forever. I will have to try a new food..Thanks for the info! 

  • Kspeigh

    I’ve tried so many different dog foods for my golden mix and everything seems to give her diarrhea..not sure if she has food allergy or IBD. This food has done wonders but now she is straining a lot when trying to go to the bathroom and her poops are hard and tiny. Has anyone else had this problem? Are there any other foods that clear up diarrhea but don’t cause this? 

  • Pacpaws888

    I have been using NV for about 5 months, and I top the Limited Ingredient Turkey with turkey thigh meat that I boil and put on my dogs food everyday.  I have a Shih Tzu who has environmental allergies as well as food allergies.  He LOVES meat,  dogs are carnivores by nature.  I also am going to have Dr. Jean Dodds (sp?) do a saliva test on my Shih Tzu to see what he is allergic too food wise.  I also am a BIG Dr. Becker advocate.  She is fantastic and you can learn a lot from her site.  Holistic is good option, treating your dog mind, body and soul, or at least being open to the Western and Eastern way of doing things nutritionally, we are all what we eat, and it is NO different than dogs.  Dogs need moisture in their foods, so top the kibble with wet food or make your own boiled meat.  Stay grain free, but remember if your dog is use to eating grains, that is why their stool had so much gurth.  Grains add substance.  You can also add vegetables to the dogs kibble, boil up some broccoli, or leafy greens… It takes time to find what works for each dog.  It is called Bioindividuality.  I rescued my Shih Tzu a year and a half ago at about age 2-3 years old and he came in horrible shape, I have really worked hard to rebuild his body, from the inside out…. ALL WORTH IT, just have to have time and patience and I their are still times he needs more adjusting…. But, as I said above, I am having a Saliva Test done on my dog, to find a more accurate reading on his food allergies.  Hope this helps some of you…

  • Toxed2loss

    Michettidl,
    Itching can be due to environmental toxins, as well as dietary toxins. It can be a symptom of vaccinosis (adverse vaccine reaction) or from worming Meds or flea and tick treatments, as both are pesticides. You can check out Dr. Karen Becker, DVM’s articles on healthypet. Mercola. com (take out the spaces). She has a lot of helpful material on causes as well as treatments. :-)

  • Toxed2loss

    PeeGee,
    You have raised a valid concern and I urge you to contact the company about it. Use their 1-800 # on the label or try their contact info.

    This site is independent of any manufacturing company. :-)

  • Michettidl

    I have 7 year old schnoodle who itches constantly since a puppy. Been to every specialist, special diets, allergy shots, etc. Only thing that helped was steroids. Now he has diabetes. Just recently tried natural instinct LI turkey. Itching has been less, not gone, but less. However, same problem as others with hard poops. Looking for a limited diet without the typical allergy related components and also starch free. He didn’t like raw either. He likes kibble topped with some wet food for variety.

  • PeeGee76

    I’ve had my German Shepherd pup on this food for about a month and a half.  She is having horrible constipation and powdery poops.  We have even been adding water to it to help, but she is straining so hard to get it out.  It’s doing wonders for her itching, but it is causing other serious problems.  Please fix whatever is causing this.  You have a great product otherwise!

  • BritMom

    We are having the exact same problem with our 2-year old Brittany. We started feeding NV Lamb Limited Ingredient due to itchy skin – suspected allergy. But after a few weeks on NV, he seems constipated and irregular and when he goes the stool is hard and powdery – poor thing. We previously fed Taste of the Wild, which he loved, but he had an itchy head. Not sure where to go from here… How is the Wellness going for you?

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Lisa,

    It’s not always easy to conjecture as to why a particular ingredient has been designed into a specific recipe.

    However, as I mention in my review, I’d guess montmorillonite clay is added because it’s naturally “rich in many trace minerals.”

    “Montmorillonite has been approved for use in USDA Organic Certified products. Reported benefits include the binding of certain mold-based toxins and even controlling diarrhea and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).”

    Hope this helps.

  • Toxed2loss

    Lisa,
    Clays are used to absorb toxins. :-) they will firm up stools. It’s not a bad transition food but it does contain both canola oil, Uric aid an inflamatory agent, and natural flavor, a source of free glutamic acid, or MSG. MSG is an excitatory neurotoxin. It can also cause diarrhea. Just sayin’. :-}

  • Lisa

    I have a 6 month old Goldendoodle that had diarrhea since the day we got him. All fecals are negative and bloodwork is fine. He has been on an antibiotic for 3 months. after much research for IBD I tried a food without potatoes. This food works!!! I am a little worried about the clay though…better than an antibiotic. Was wondering why they put this in their food??

  • WorldSmile

    READ ABOUT ASH CONTENT:
    Poor Quality Food
    An extremely common cause of constipation in dogs is cheap, low-quality dog food. Many pet owners do not understand the importance of carefully choosing the best food for their dog.
    As a result, many dogs are fed highly processed, inexpensive dog food that can cause many digestive issues. Recently, it has been suggested that a high percentage of processed grains can also lead to constipation in dogs. Highly processed grains do not retain much of their natural fiber, and can be difficult for a canine digestive system to process.
    Lower-quality dog food is often subjected to harsh preservatives and chemical dyes. Some dog food is also allowed to have a certain percentage of “ash” which is a byproduct of cooking dog food ingredients at a high temperature. As well as being bad for your dog’s digestive system, ash has been linked to many other canine health problems. All of these substances may cause constipation, as well as negative effects on your dog’s overall health. As a dedicated pet owner, it is your responsibility to give your dog the highest quality food that you can afford. So even though we pay premium dollars for the food the ash content is so high it makes it cheap food!

  • WorldSmile

    As it turns out folks… LOOK at Their Ash %! O! My!
    Hello Nature’s Variety! All that ash is damaging to our pets!

  • WorldSmile

    I phoned Scott at Nature’s Variety. He and one other gal are there to take our calls and address our concerns. He said he hadn’t heard of anyone else (in the whole wide world???) having constipation problems with their dogs on this food. He also asked me to call and follow-up with him after seeing my vet. I thought that was strange… shouldn’t they try to follow up with me??? Anyhoo, we went to the vet and not only did my dog have a full exam but also a full blood panel to be certain there was nothing else going on or beginning to go on. Conclusion, there is not enough fiber in the food for my dog and for most dogs. Adding Pure Pumpkin does work if you are wondering. In conclusion, I phone Nature’s Variety back to follow-up. I get the feeling they really don’t care at all. I am trying Wellness Simple. I do not want to buy dog food from a company who does not seem to care about my dog or me! Happy New Year All!

  • WorldSmile

    Yes! We Are! I have added pumpkin to his diet which works well. We are heading to the vet tomorrow as I want to be sure it’s not a sign of something else. My German Shepherd was really struggling so I added the pumpkin which took a few days to work. He scratches and burps so I am worried of course. I changed his food in October so again I am not sure if it’s the food or a warning sign. How are you making out Cinder’s Momma?

  • melissa

    Cinder’s Mom-

    PU/PD is a reason to have a urine test and bloodwork done(excessive urination/excessive drinking) and can be a sign of several diseases including diabetes.

    German shepherds are prone to a disease called EPI as well and “cow patty poop” is one sign. I would google the various things and perhaps re-consult with a vet.

  • sandy

    I still see it on 4 of their formulas online.

  • http://www.pridepurrfectgifts.com Christine Gietzen

    I just did some research on Nature’s Variety kibble which I carry at my store. It seems that NV has removed canola oil from their formulas, because it does not show up on the ingredient lists online. They still list canola oil in their ingredient glossary but it may just be that they have not updated it yet. It may be prudent to update this analysis report.

  • Cinder’sMomma

    Anyone having problems with this dog food making their dog constipated? I have a 6mo old GSD that has loose/peanut butter stools with every dog food I’ve tried but this one, which seems to have the opposite effect. She’s drinking tons of water, urinating more often than normal, and having trouble defecating. I’m starting to get a little out of sorts with all this food switching. I’m tempted to top this food with pumpkin or wet dog food, but I think she may have food allergies and I’m not sure what she’s allergic to. The vet suggested Natural Balance Venison and Sweet Potato, but the stuff was awful. It made her fur stink and her feces were black, three times larger than normal, and smelled a lot worse than normal dog feces. Not sure where to go from here.

  • melissa

    Elie-

    My dogs go crazy for the Acana as well. I have tried all the “flavors” of the grain free, and all seem to be welcomed with equal eagerness ; )

  • monkey

    Sandy, i heard it is for their Classic Acana line. Itll be a single protein Duck, similar to their Lamb one.

  • Elie

    I’ve never herd of their new products but grassland is one of their newer ones with just 30% proteins, I tell you my dog is never really excited about dog food that much, he would rather eat popcorn than his food but once I mixed the Acana with his Instinct he just went crazy over it and the cat that stays away from him at all cost came and wanted to eat the food!

  • sandy

    Elie,

    You’re welcome. I wonder what their “new” products are that are coming out later this year??

  • Elie

    Thank you for your care and time to write, I went out and got him a small bag of Acana grassland which only has 30% proteins and I started mixing it with his Instinct, as soon as I poured it for him he went crazy never did this before and even the cat came and started hissing at him cause she wanted some. Let’s hope potatoes aren’t bad for him cause he seems to love the food

  • sandy

    Try the Instinct Chicken and slowly introduce it with the turkey he’s eating now so he gets accustomed to it slowly and you can still use all of the turkey up. Some dogs can transition in a week, some dogs take alot longer. My dog (one of them) took a few months. It was Prairie Salmon and Instinct together for a couple months before going totally grain free. If you don’t want to use the Chicken at 42% protein and 490 calories/cup (that’s alot), I would definitely look into Amicus 30% or even Great Life Grain Free Chicken 30%. I ordered some from Petflow.com. Maybe start at 30% and work your way up depending on how your dog does.

    None of the Acana products are potato free but still a good product with protein from 31-33%. Since my dogs have been potato free for 6 months or so I will be rotating those kinds of foods back in.

    Here’s some foods with percent protein.
    Taste of the Wild Sierra Mountain and Pacific Stream are 25%, Canidae Pure Land 25%, Solid Gold Sundancer 30%, Nutrisca Lamb and Salmon formulas 30%, TOTW High Prairie 32%, Merrick Before Grain 32%, Nutrisca chicken 32%, Canidae Pure Sky and TOTW Wetlands 32%, Infinia Turkey & Sweet Potato 32%, Natures Select GF 33%, Blue Buffalo Wilderness 34%, Earthborn Holistic 34%, Brothers 34%, and lots more with higher protein.

    With all these foods, your dog shouldn’t even be eating a whole cup a day! Maybe 1/2 or a rounded 1/2 cup.

  • Elie

    He is eating instinct turkey LID

  • sandy

    What is your dog eating right now? I’m going out for dinner…be back…

  • Elie

    so which instinct do you recommend next? and is any of the Acana’s without any potatoes?

  • sandy

    Acana appears to be a very good food, but right now i’m avoiding white potato foods (if you spend enough time reading the Brothers Complete thread back through several months, there will be discussions on white potatoes). I’m finishing up the bag of Instinct Duck & Turkey and then will try to avoid it since it has canola oil, which may be a genetically modified food. I would use the other flavors though without canola (chicken, red meat, rabbit).

    Before going potato free, I used Wellness Core Ocean, Blue Buffalo Wilderness, Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream, and can’t buy Acana Light & Fit where I’m at or I would have used it too.

    Next on my list to try is Great Life Grain Free. They have formulas ranging from 27-30% FYI. http://www.doctorsfinest.com/Premium_Dog_Food_Natural_Pet_Dog_Foods_Grain_Free_Food_s/1.htm

  • Elie

    I haven’t purchased any Red yet, it’s just your comment about the LID and the canola oil made me thoughtful so do you recommend any other Instinct kind? The guy at the store recommended Acana which I think is made by Orijen!

  • sandy

    Elie,

    I don’t think it’s too much for some dogs, but for others, they just don’t tolerate it well (GI wise – diarrhea, mucousy stool, horrible gas). I used one bag of Red (before the recipe change) and it really has a strong odor. One of my pugs gobbles anything in site, and one of my other pugs would pick it out of his mix of food, spit it out on to the floor, and then eat them last. So I mixed the Red with another food to dilute it a bit. It really did smell! My pugs are indoor dogs. They range from 4 yrs old to 10. They eat 30-40% protein in kibble the past 2 years and I’ve also added Natures Variety Raw and Primal Raw and turkey necks the past year. They are all healthy with good lab work at their check up earlier this year. I usually have 2 or 3 different kibbles at once. I feed a fish kibble, a chicken/turkey kibble, sometimes rabbit or other. Just mix the Red with something else to dilute it if you’re worried about the protein % or return it to the store if you can. Right now, I have Instinct Duck & Turkey, Nutrisca Salmon, Brothers Allergy and Epigen. Just finished 3 bags of Amicus.

  • Elie

    Jan would you recommend the Orijen red to my Yorkshire since Sandy thinks that it’s not necessary to give him an LID + the Canola oil if it’s not necessary?
    Thank you again for all your help

  • Elie

    Hey Sandy thank you for your reply, do you think Orijen red would be too much protein for the little one? I’ve herd so many good things about the brand

  • sandy

    Elie,

    Amicus Adult is 30% and is for small/toy breeds. It is also not an LID like the Instinct Turkey and does not contain canola oil. Why restrict your dogs food to an LID in if it’s not necessary? I’ve used this food and my dogs like it alot, no gas! I also rotate foods so this is just one of many foods they get.

    http://www.horizonpetfood.com/amicus/ingredients.html

  • Jan (Mom to Cavs)

    Elie, I personally like a little higher protein for most healthy dogs. If a dog has some health issue, then I think one should work with their vet to determine what is trying to be accomplished with their diet, otherwise, if the dog is healthy then feed it a higher protein. Of course, always make sure plenty of water is available. I think if he likes the Instinct more than the Core then go with it. My dogs eat a protein percentage in their kibble anywhere from 26-36. It just depends on what their eating atm. I also use canned foods and premade raw which are all have higher protein content and my dogs do fine. I have 2 seniors, and 2 adults. All of them are virtually couch potatoes, too. None of them are overweight. I will say that sometimes I have to cut down on treats for my seniors to keep that girlish figure lol.

  • Elie

    Thank you Jan but do you think the 3 above mentioned foods have way to much protein for a small not so active dog? My Yorkshire is pretty big for his breed, he is 14 pounds but very slim no weight problems whatsoever. I herd so many stories online about too much protein for inactive dogs and it made me switch from Core to Instinct Turkey which has 5% less proteins, he also seems to like Instinct more than Core
    Thanx

  • Jan (Mom to Cavs)

    Elie, I think all the foods you mentioned are fine for a small dog that spends most of it time indoors. Just watch the amount you feed and monitor your pups waistline.

  • Elie

    Hi Mike, thank you for the review, yours is one of the few I found about the food online. I have a 16 months old Yorkshire who’s been on Wellness Core, he wasn’t too crazy about the food and I wanted to find something with a bit less protein content since my dog is mostly indoors and isn’t extremely active. I was thinking about giving him Orjen Red but opted for the instinct turkey since it only has 29% of protein compared to Orijen’s and Core’s 34. My question is do you recommend the food for such a small dog who stays mainly indoors?
    Thank you

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Diane… For a very basic understanding about ash (in food), you may wish to read my article, “Why Is There Ash in Your Dog’s Food“. In a nutshell, ash represents the cumulative total of all minerals found in a given food.

    Although a very small part of the ash can come from various tissues of the prey animal as well as plant ingredients, the overwhelming majority of this component comes from the bone content (or minerals supplements) in the food.

    And the lion’s share of that ash is most likely calcium and phosphorus.

    In any case, the ash number by itself can be very generic. And not very revealing. It’s only a total.

    Knowing the actual itemized minerals that create that figure would be much more informative. And it can be much more important, especially when it comes to feeding growing large breed puppies.

    Or a dog suffering from renal (kidney) disease.

    In general, the average ash content found in most commercial dog foods appears to be somewhere around 6-8%. Since most companies don’t typically report this data on their labels, I arbitrarily use 8% for ash in our dashboard calculations.

    Hope this helps.

  • diane

    Mike,
    I was wondering you take on the ash content which is clearly listed on the bag of Natures Variety Limited Ingredient. The lamb formula is 12% max and the turkey formula is 10% max. Do you believe its safe to feed either formula long term with those %s. Do you know what is unsafe, I cant seem to get an answer from anyone.

    Thanks

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Linda… The calcium content of this food is within the range as suggested in the AAFCO nutritional profiles. However, there are different kinds of urinary stones. And like humans, each dog can be biologically more or less prone to forming these stones than others.

    There’s an excellent article about urinary stones that discusses this problem and makes some practical suggestions.

    Also, the Urolith Center at the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine provides an excellent website devoted to the identification of different types of urinary stones. This site also offers some excellent recommendations, too.

    Hope this helps.

  • Linda

    Hi, Mike,
    Thank you for reviewing this food. I think it’s pretty good for a L.I.D. kibble. I was just wondering what you think about the amount of calcium. It’s double the amount of most other foods. I’ve heard that too much calcium causes kidney stones. Would you please comment on this?
    Thank you!
    Linda

  • http://mymudi.blogspot.com Kim

    Hi Mike,

    I took in a rescued mudi 4 mos ago. He came to me with many allergy symptoms, ears infected, hot spots, vomitting, and loose stools. I usually feed raw, homecooked or orijen to my dogs, but since I am only fostering this guy I needed to find a kibble for him. (They are easier to place if on kibble) After several attempts, finding out fish, lamb and potatoes (both white and sweet) are causing problems I put him on the NV turkey limited ingredient. He is doing very well on it. He has great stools, no itching, no vomiting, no ear infections. Every thing has cleared up. As well his blood work looks good. Might be worth a try if a dog has serious allergies.

  • Kevin

    Hi: Thank you so much for your review – this is a a great feed!

    I obtained a rescued pit bull about 4 years ago and had nothing but problems with most other foods. My vet told me he probably had IBF, and I had varying degrees of succes with a couple of other brands of rice & lamb diets. My vet also prescribed Endosorb, a clay-based anti-diarrheal, for his diarrhea whenever it flared up, which wwas a real life-saver.

    I started him on Nature’s Variety Prairie (lamb or chicken) about a year ago, which he did reasonably well on. However, about every 4 or 5 days he would not eat for a day or two; he also did not like the taste unless it was doctored with olive oil. He also had a persistent problem during long walks where he would begin defecating mucous repeatedly (6-12 times) towards the end of the walk.

    I started him on Nature’s Variety limited ingredient diet (lamb) about a month ago and the results were nothing short of miraculous. He actually looks forward to feeding time and plows through a bowlfull in one shot. His stool is usually hard, unless he drinks a lot of water. Even if his stool is loose as a result of the water, however, I have had no incidences of spastic defecation since I started him on the limited ingredient diet. His coat looks radiant and he’s even put on a little weight, which he needed.

  • http://www.whosyourvet.com Sandi

    I’m wondering what everyone’s feeling is about Montmorillonite Clay? I have my reservations after reading this article and was told Dr. Pitcairn used to recommend it but it’s not in his latest edition for some reason.
    http://desertwindhounds.blogspot.com/2010/11/montmorillonite-clay-for-dogs-good-bad.html

    Mike – I wish they didn’t use canola oil since it’s “genetically-modified”
    “Current thinking (ours included) finds the negative stories about canola oil more the stuff of urban legend than actual science.1″
    http://www.responsibletechnology.org/buy-non-gmo

  • Janice D. McCollam

    @Aiden…with the exception of peas (a legume), there are no fruits and veggies in the Nature’s Variety LID diets. This is because sometimes allergy prone or sensitve stomach dogs have reactions to these (and they really aren’t needed anyway) :).
    If you email Nature’s Variety, I’m sure they can tell you the percentage of meat to carb ratio in the foods.

  • Aiden

    Hello Mike I wish you would have the chance to answer this one… I currently have a dog that is the pickiest dog in the world; maybe because she spend about 2 years eating all sorts of Spanish foods, and now it is real difficult to make her eat dog food. Percentages of meat and veggie/fruit contents are labeled on the normal Instinct bags why didn’t they do the same with the Limited Ingredient ones?

  • Janice D. McCollam

    @ Korie, I forgot to mention…the 2 that needed to lose some weight have lost! Like you, I wanted to get away from all the carbs in the Natural Balance LIDs. So far, this is working out great!

  • Janice D. McCollam

    @Korie, as Mike mentioned this subject is controversial. I’ve chosen to use the NV LID Turkey for my 4 dogs. They are 10, 10, 8 and 4 years old. They are doing very well on our feeding regimen. NV LID dry, a variety of can food mixed with it (I use NV, Wellness, Mulligan’s Stew, Fromm, etc.) for their morning meal and NV premade raw medallions for their evening meal (I use the chicken & turkey, organic chicken and beef). I hope I’m not jinxing us, but they’ve never looked or acted better!

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Korie… Though the subject can be controversial, high protein is not necessarily a problem for senior dogs. To learn more about this subject, please visit our FAQ page and look for the topic, “Dog Food Protein”. Be sure to follow the links you’ll find there, too. Hope this helps.

  • Korie Avery

    Mike: I am looking for a good 4 or 5 star LID food to feed my Senior (11 or 12 years), somewhat overweight (21.9 lbs) Jack Russell Terrier (and I think Corgi) mix dog. I believe she has allergies to chicken. I currently feed her Natural Balance LID Sweet Potato & Fish, but I want to get away from all the carbs. I was always under the impression that feeding a food with too high of protein for a senior pet is not a good idea — that as dogs get older, they do not metabolize the high protein as easily as when they were young and the high protein can actually cause hardship on the kidneys of a senior dog. I will appreciate your help!

  • Pingback: Nature Variety Grain

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Izzybell… The NV Limited Ingredient Diet contains a single (meat) protein source in each recipe.

  • izzybell

    what is the difference between this limited ingredient kibble and the regular N.V. Instinct one?

  • Janice D. McCollam

    Thanks, Mike, for reviewing this new formula of Nature’s Variety. I am using the Turkey flavor for my 4 and they’re doing fine on it. I was using Natural Balance LIDs (duck or fish) and they were doing fine, but I tried this because of the higher meat content and no potatoes. I also use can food on top and for their evening meal they do get Nature’s Variety premade raw medallions. So far, my allergy prone dogs are doing good on this feeding regimen. Again, thanks for all your hard work….really appreciated!