Over the years we have adopted 4 stray dogs who have drifted onto our small acreage. For the majority of those years I fed them Solid Gold……until the the size of the largest bags became smaller.
I wanted to ask the forum for recommendations on the best quality and quantity for the buck.
I have tried Canidae…..the best option for size @ 44 lbs. Around $60. But it’s also manufactured by Diamond. I realize Solid Gold is packaged by them as well, but all S.G. varieties smelled great and my dogs loved it!
I have also tried a couple different varieties of Tractor Supply’s 4health. And Diamond Naturals. 35lbs @ $35 or $37. And each type r-e-e-k-e-d of the most horrible dogfood smell. Surprise, surprise: Made by Diamond.
Currently I feed them Merrick’s Whole Earth Farms Adult Food. 35 lbs for around $40. Made by Diamond. *Sigh* But at least it passed the smell test!
I have been trying to find a premium dry kibble in the largest bag possible (35+ lbs) for up to $60 (hopefully not packaged by Diamond)……but I have run out of options and I am hoping the members of this forum could make suggestions for me.
Thank you in advance!
Hi Cherrie –
Not all of Solid Gold’s foods are made by Diamond. The Solid Gold formulas made by Diamond are WolfKing, WolfCub, Just a Wee Bit and Hund-n-Flocken – the other varieties are made by Crosswind. Whole Earth Farms is not made by Diamond – it’s made by Merrick. The grain-inclusive 4Health is made by Diamond but they also have a new (very reasonably priced) grain-free line which is manufactured by Ainsworth.
Some other brands you may want to check out that are reasonably priced and rated at least 4 stars: Victor, Native Performance, Pro Pac, Eagle Pack, NutriSource, Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals and Dave’s.
I appreciate it! LOL no wonder Whole Earth Farms smells good…..
Thank you for the brand list…..I will check them out!
In addition to those recommended by HDM, one I use in my rotation that I think is a fantastic value is Dr. Tim’s. I use the Grain Free Kinesis in my rotation and Petflow.com has a 30 pound bag for $56.99 or you can pick up a whopping 44 pound bag of the grain inclusive formula for $63.99. Both are five star foods on DFA.
Another of my favorites is Nature’s Logic. Petflow.com has a 26.4 pound bag of chicken or beef for $57.99. It’s made from whole food ingredients with no synthetic vitamins or minerals and no Chinese sourced ingredients; proteins are either grass finished or vegetarian fed and all are hormone and antibiotic free. Also a five star food on DFA.
Oh, and they both smell nice. : )
Thank you Betsy for the Dr. Tim’s thought! I have been thinking that buying online/ free shipping might be the way to go!
Ordering online is safe and convenient. And, the best part is that the UPS or FedEx guy gets to lug your giant bag of dog food to your front door! All it costs you are some home baked cookies at Christmas. : )
You know, I have to mention also that NutriSource is one of my favorite budget friendly foods. I just priced it on Petflow.com and you can get a 40 pound bag of Performance Chicken & Rice for $55.99. You can pick up a 30 pound bag of grain free food for either $49.99 or $50.99. Or, you could grab a 33 pound bag of Adult Chicken & Rice for $47.99. You might be able to pick it up locally somewhere near you. They have a nice loyalty reward program as well, buy 12, get the 13th bag free. I’d contact the manufacturer and ask if the program is available for online purchases. It’s a four star food on DFA. It’s made by Tuffy’s and I have faith in the company. In my opinion, it’s an outstanding value.
Wow, it doesn’t even cost me cookies at Christmas. The UPS and FedX guys ring and run in our area, except when they don’t ring at all.
I second dr Tim’s and am throwing in Annamaet (their grain inclusive isn’t too badly priced, grain free a bit high)
You might also check Nature’s Select at naturalpetfooddelivery.com They used to carry 50 lb bags but have since gone to 30 lb standard bags but the prices are still reasonable. The 50 lb bags ranged from $50-$56 in the grain-inclusive line while the grain free was more expensive at 30 lb for $62.
Best bang for the buck? We have adopted a 6 month old 30 lb multigeneration mixed breed dog. She is very active (particularly with our twin 6 1/2 year old boys). We are of modest means. I’ve been considering Innova Prime Grain Free (Dry), Wellness Core Dog Food (Dry), and NutriSource Lamb Meal and Rice, or Kirkland Signature Nature’s Domain. There are so many great foods on the site and we want to give “Mitzi” the best food we can afford. Any recommendations for the best possible food that is still reasonably priced??
The best is to pick a few that work for you and to rotate through them.
Hi there . . . if you’re still around or checking in on occasion.
Thank you for adopting — I will never stop loving hearing about anyone adopting a shelter or rescue pet, taking in a stray, providing a second (and forever!) home to a dog.
Of the 4 brands you mention, I would look beyond the ingredients to the company that makes the food and their history. The ingredients, percentages don’t matter if you can’t trust what’s in the bag, highest quality ingredient commitment and sourcing, and manufacturing with strict quality controls and testing.
Innova Prime — owned by Proctor & Gamble
Kirkland Nature’s Domain — owned & manufactured by Diamond
Wellness Core — owned by Berwing, and until recently manufactured by Diamond
Nutrisource — owned & manufactured by Nutrisource
While Innova Prime and Wellness Core are often viewed as “higher end” foods with alluring ingredients & percentages, big name & trendy, glossy marketing . . . I’d regard Nutrisource the most trustworthy manufacturer. Long history, small family privately owned, no recalls in their history, makers of 2 other health oriented dog foods (Natural Planet Organics & Pure Vita).
Innova Prime (along with California Natural, Evo, Mother Nature, and Karma) is a Proctor & Gamble product. P&G bought out Natura — formerly a small family owned company, maker of quality health foods for dogs & no recall in 21 yrs — and has had with multiple mass recalls since the fairly recent takeover, affecting all their dog food brands. P&G, maker of Iams & numerous household/personal products and foods, has an extensive history of extreme animal cruelty in commercial animal testing (among other ethical issues) and has been one of the most, if not the most, notorious offenders and most defiant about it. Many people boycott them and all their household products for this reason.
Nature’s Domain at Costco is manufactured by Diamond. Diamond, like Menu Foods, makes a huge number of foods and has a very poor history of not only many mass recalls, but deadly ones, and with a history of poorly responding to consumers whose pets have fallen seriously ill. Many customers & businesses will no longer do business with them as a result. Personally, I think it very risky buying products manufactured by Diamond.
I think this particular product can also be very deceptive, a bait & switch, particularly the salmon — in pretty packaging, alluring marketing description, and tempting price point. Mainly I think that it’s a starchy carb based food, with very little actual meat/fish, and devoid of healthy fat or Omega 3. It uses farmed salmon & fish, which tend to be diseased and contaminated with dangerous toxins like PCBs.
Wellness was founded by Old Mother Hubbard (now merged with Eagle Pack), became WellPet, and was bought out by Berwing. Berwing is a large multi-billion dollar company, privately held, which made its money in coal and now makes numerous products including Elmer’s glue. Wellness was manufactured by Diamond (and suffered recalls under Diamond). Despite severing ties with Diamond (per Wellness) less than a year ago, Wellness is still having recalls and most recently has had alarming pictures surface on the web of extremely moldy food.
Have you considered Fromm? This is another small, longtime family owned company (100 yrs), no recalls, that makes an array of all natural quality foods at every price point — as low as just over $1 a bag for Fromm Classics Adult Dog Food ($33.99/33 lbs with auto ship at PetFoodDirect, 15% off; full price of one time ship, $39.99/33 lbs). This company takes a lot of care with ingredient sourcing, ingredient grade, formulation, and excluding what it believes to be harmful ingredients and including specific ingredients thought to be health promoting (like cartilage for glucosamine).
At that higher price point you are considering for Innova Prime or Wellness Core, I’d redirect to to the lower priced and, in my opinion, higher quality & nutrient dense Timberwolf Organics. I have more trust and confidence in the (very small) company and owner. And I have fed their foods for many years with great results. They make a Platinum line (grain & white potato free, low carb/high protein) and Classic line (whole grains & sweet potatoes, more moderate protein). Prices range from about $45/24 lbs Classic line with advance ordering, directly online from Timberwolf to about $50-55/24 lbs Platinum line with advance ordering. Regular prices for immediate shipment, arrival within 3-5 days, are $55 and $64. Shipping is free for $60+ orders, or flat $5. http://www.timberwolforganics.com/
Hi GSDsForever – thanks for the reply. Based on your recommendation and additional research online I’m leaning toward the Fromm Family Classics Adult Formula Dry Dog Food ($37.99 with free shipping from Chewy.com)!
Best bang for the buck? We have a 45 lb multigeneration mixed breed dog. She is very active (particularly with our twin 7 year old boys). We are of modest means. I’ve been considering Innova Prime Grain Free (Dry), Wellness Core Dog Food (Dry), and NutriSource Grain Free, or Taste of the Wild. There are so many great foods on the site and we want to give “Mitzi” the best food we can afford. Any recommendations for the best possible food that is still reasonably priced??
Have you looked at Earthborn?
I personally would not use Innova or TOTW; both have been involved in a recall or their maker has. Innova & Wellness Core are not “bang for the buck ” foods. Are you fine with ordering online? If yes, you open yourself up to all kinds of foods, free shipping & delivered right to your door. Look t Petflow, wag and chewy, all at dot.com.
Look at Earthborn, NutriSource, Victor, Annamaet, Dr Tim’s…I believe they all have foods with and without grains.
Victor Grain Free is a good food for the price. For example, 30lb bag of their grain free joint formula food is only $49.99. They have a fish formula that is grain free, a performance formula that is grain free and a grain free high energy formula. They do have 40lb bags of joint and high energy, but they aren’t grain free. The 40lb bag for joint health is about $42.99. The grain free also ranks 5 stars. Victor is sold at most feed stores and some pet boutiques, but not online (from my own research). If you rather order a food online I would check out chewy.com. Free 1-2 day shipping for orders over $49. Oh, the prices I mention about Victor are from my work. Some feed stores may be cheaper.
Thanks everybody for the prompt replies. I think I’m leaning toward Dr. Tim’s Premium All Natural Pet Foods Pursuit Active or NutriSource heartland select. Any additional comments?
I’m fond of dr Tim and his foods! If ou order online, you can sign up for auto ship (you can change anything about it before a scheduled shipment) and get a discount.
I’d definitely go with Dr. Tim’s over NutriSource.
And how about Dr. Tim’s Pursuit vs. Canidae Grain Free Pure?
Crepuscular: Pursuit is grain inclusive; tht Canidae is obviously grainfree.
Both are five stars here, both art meat based with significant amounts of meat. IMO, if you want grainfree, look at dr Tim’s grainfree Kinesis. I’d choose Dr Tim’s over Canidae.
I agree with Marie – I’d go Dr. Tim’s over Canidae. I think Dr. Tim’s Momentum looks like their best formula.
I have always found Solid Gold to be a great quality dog food. I’m not sure where all this low rating talk is coming from. There was a nation wide crises a few years back where a bunch of pets, both fogs and cats were dying left and right from the tainted pet foods. There were a bunch of brands involved because they were all being manufactured by the same facilities. Solid Gold was the only company that was unaffected.
My dog was safe! When she was a pup she came from her breeder in Science Diet. The vets were all pushing S.D. at the time. Candy used to get hot spots like crazy and hydro cortisone shots every 6 weeks were the norm. After a whole I finally asked the vet what I need to do or I’d take her somewhere else. She said well let’s try changing her diet. First she suggested Nutro. It didn’t work. Then she suggested solid gold and it was a miracle. Never had another problem.
Another I’m reading here is that it’s too low in protein. Well we should all be aware that dogs don’t need a yon of protein as adults. Not like cats which are obligated carnivores. Too much protein is harmful to dogs. As a matter of fact, most serious breeders of large breeds only feed puppy food for 5 months before switching to adult food because the protein level is higher in pup food.
We went with Dr. Tim’s Pursuit from Chewy.com and our dog is very fit healthy and happy with small firm regular poops.
I buy Victor Grain Free because I wanted a 5-star for the cheapest price (their prices went up recently, ugh). I have 3 coonhound/pointer mixes (one is a frisbee nut), and we blow through about 2 30lbs bags a month. I buy from the local feed store and I just rotate the salmon (orange) and the glucosamine variety (green). My dogs like the food, but I cheat and add some wet (PureBalance beef from Walmart and Nature’s Domain Turkey and pea from Costco). I don’t think they get enough fiber because they eat a bit of grass (not to throw up), so I add some pumpkin here an there. I found all the information from DFA. My dogs have the most beautiful coats! They shine in the sun!
Good luck! And let me know what you find! I’m into 5-star and biggest for cheapest!
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.