I was looking around in a pet boutique today, and saw Sojos brand premix. You just add water and your own meat. https://www.sojos.com/products/dog-food/sojos-original-dog-food-mix
Is that a good one, or is it just too high in carbs? I’ve never had the chance to do a home made diet mainly because of the high cost and resource issues. But this stuff looked very affordable. I think a 10lb bag (supposed to make 48lb when mixed with raw meat/water) was $25.
I know there are much better options out there, but I’m just wondering what your opinions are on it. Would it be worth looking into as a start for home made? Or would a 4-5 star kibble still be better?
Hound Dog MomParticipant
Hi Shasta –
It’s wonderful that you’re considering a homemade diet, in my opinion it truly is the healthiest way to go. The general rule is the less processed the better. Here Dr. Martin Goldstein provides a nice ranking of types of pet foods from best to worst: http://www.drmarty.com/what-should-i-feed-my-pet-for-best-health/.
Pre-mixes are one of the best routes for beginners to take because there are a lot fewer opportunities to go wrong. When feeding completely homemade (from scratch) it’s crucial that ingredients are added in proper proportions and certain supplements will need to be added to ensure that all the nutritional bases are covered.
In my opinion, Sojo’s pre-mix would be fine to use rotationally with other pre-mixes. I’ve used it a few times in the past. However, it does not appear to me that Sojo’s pre-mix would make a complete and balanced meal and I can’t locate any claims on their packaging or website that states the final product (once meat is added) will be complete and balanced (per AAFCO’s standards). There are quite a few pre-mixes out there on the market, my three favorites are See Spot Live Longer Dinner Mix (http://www.seespotlivelonger.com/), The Honest Kitchen’s Preference (http://www.thehonestkitchen.com/preference) and Urban Wolf (http://www.urbanwolf.cc/).
If you ever want to venture into a completely homemade diet, I’d strongly recommend picking up a copy of “Unlocking the Canine Ancestral Diet” by Steve Brown. It’s a great resource for beginners and includes AAFCO compliant recipes. The author is also the creator of the See Spot Live Longer pre-mix I mentioned above.
Best of luck!
Thank you very much! I had known about those other premixes, but I just don’t have that kind of money.
I thought it seemed a little bit simple and unbalanced, too. Would it be fine if rotated out with their kibble, I wonder?
Definitely, if I get into it, I’ll look into those resources! I won’t be able to ever do a home made diet w my dogs right now, but maybe in a few more years when I’m moved out, I’ll be able to keep a separate fridge/freezer/cabinet just for my poochies! (That’s one of the main reasons aside from cost – there is nooooo room in our fridge/freezer/cabinets to keep dog meat around, and the only way meat around here is affordable, is if you buy a half-cow at a time)
My dogs get the cuts we don’t like, like cube and flank steak, neck bones with meat, short ribs, and ground beef.
Hound Dog MomParticipant
Sojo’s would be fine to use for a few meals a week alternated with a balanced kibble, definitely. See Spot Live Longer Dinner Mix is actually really reasonably priced, probably cheaper than Sojo’s. Shipping is free and if you order a case you get a huge discount. A case is $132, it comes with 12 bags so that’s only $11 per bag. Each bag makes 26 lbs. of food.
I add some pre-mix + raw on top of my dogs’ kibble. I love the idea of giving them some less processed food, but I don’t yet trust the pre-mixes enough to feed them exclusively. I’ve rotated through Sojo’s, The Honest Kitchen, Grandma Lucy’s Artisan, and Grandma Lucy’s Pureformance.
My main complaint is that the meat to mix ratios seem suspiciously unscientific. Sojo’s says 1 cup dry mix to 1/2 cup meat (seems like not nearly enough meat; I do 1:1). THK says 1 cup dry mix to 1 cup meat, and Grandma Lucy’s says 1 cup dry mix to 1 OR 2 cups meat. The whole reason I started adding the premix to the meat was that I was a little worried about messing up the calcium. These instructions don’t necessarily make me feel more confident, so I keep the kibble around.
Dogaware.com has a very informative write-up about premixes for anyone who needs more information (premixes aren’t reviewed on this site).
I am looking for a complete premix for my 8 pound chihuahua. I ordered a ton of samples from grandma Lucy’s and she didn’t like any of them. I think the garlic was overbearing in the mixes. I was looking for one that I could add my own meat to so that I can rotate the protein sources. See spot live longer looks like it is no longer made. There is a grain free from thk that I am going to try but with my dog being so picky it would be nice to have a back up plan. I would love to do my own home cooking but it seems so overwhelming with trying to get the vitamins and minerals all balanced out. I was looking into the dr dobias holistic products to add but someone told me that even with those there wasn’t enough calcium. If I would make my own home made can anyone recommend an all in one vitamin source or doesn’t that even exist? Ty!
I buy a Balance IT supplement if I make my dogs a homemade meal. You can buy one that you just add meat to or another one if you want to add any carbs, veggies or meats of your own to it. https://secure.balanceit.com/ They have an auto balancer to help you figure out all the ingredients to get the right protein and carb percentage you are shooting for.
My dogs really love a homemade meal every now and then. Good luck!
My lab/golden has IBD. We’ve been trying for a year and a half to find a food that doesn’t cause vomiting or diarrhea. Through trial and error we’ve figured out she needs very low fat, very low fiber, no white or sweet potatoes, and no kibble. Our latest experiment has been with Sojo’s original pre-mix with cooked chicken breast (I’m afraid to feed raw meat to a dog with a compromised immune system.) The first three days she loved it and her stools were firm. Then she threw up but it looked like just the chicken so we wrote it off as a fluke and persevered. Now she doesn’t want to eat the Sojo’s – she tries to pick the chicken out. She hasn’t thrown up in two days and her stools are still excellent. She behaved the same way with Honest Kitchen and Grandma Lucy’s. Meanwhile we’ve tried several canned foods that she will eat enthusiastically despite the gas and cow patty stools they cause. Does anyone have any idea why these mixes might not sit right with her, despite the good output? I’m soaking the Sojo’s overnight. Our vet has no idea why she stops eating it. Also wondering if the oats, etc., in the Sojo’s are cooked – they don’t look it, so might it be causing bloat
Stephanie S, my toy rat terrier is exactly the same way, he is currently struggling with chronic pancreatitis and Im trying to find something to feed him besides the hydrolyzed kibble by Royal Canin which just seems so wrong.I was wondering if you found any solutions for pre mix your baby girl?
Maria, good luck with your puppy. We took Daisy to the vet not long after this post and learned her liver was inflamed. She was taken off her prednisone and other meds which can be toxic to the liver and we lost control of her IBD. Had to say goodbye a couple weeks later.
So her lack of interest in the Sojos was probably a coincidence. We did learn near the end that delayed stomach emptying is not uncommon in IBD and were just about to try metoclopramide (?) to speed up movement through her stomach, but we didn’t get a chance. It’s all about getting the right combo of food and drugs -a lot of trial and error – hopefully before it’s too late. I wish you and your puppy well.
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