Ugh, now with the grain free search

Dog Food Advisor Forums Diet and Health Ugh, now with the grain free search

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  • #102551 Report Abuse

    Hey guys,

    My 9 week Yellow lab has been chewing on his paws. Not at a super alarming amount but enough that I’ve began to notice. The Diamond Puppy food the breeder has him on has by products and then two wheat ingredients so I suspect it may be the food. I had decided to switch him to Fromm Lrg. Puppy but its not Grain free and I don’t love their Heartland (which is grain free).

    I’m also a fan of the Precise Holistic lrg. breed pup food but that’s also not grain free. If we are going to upgrade his dog food we’d like to do it only once if possible and try the grain free, see if it helps and if it doesn’t we’ll have the vet run some tests. I’m going to put in a call to her tomorrow either way to be sure this is the correct course of action.

    Any Large Breed Puppy kibbles you can suggest? Nature’s Variety looks great but its just too expensive. We may be able to swing Orijen but if I’m going to spend that on food I’d want to know for certain it fixed the problem. Other than Orijen and Natures Variety and suggestions?

    #102552 Report Abuse

    He is too young to be diagnosed…..but it could be environmental allergies, wipe his feet off or rinse with plain water every time he comes in from the outside, especially after coming in from stepping in grass covered with morning dew. Let’s hope the allergies (if that’s what it is) are mild and seasonal.
    The only way to rule out food sensitivities would be an elimination diet/prescription food under the guidance of a vet.
    Veterinary Dermatologists don’t advise testing until the symptoms have been going on for 1 year/4 seasons or are are severe, and have not responded to treatment by the regular vet.
    Wait and see what your vet suggests for food as it may not be related.
    What about ProPlan Focus Large Breed puppy

    #102553 Report Abuse

    Oh, I forgot to mention. Don’t be fooled by mail in hair and saliva tests, they are not allergy tests. They are bogus.
    Also, don’t apply any over the counter remedies to the paws, just wipe them off with a wet towel and dry, this should help.
    Ps: If the symptoms continue/become problematic and eventually get diagnosed as environmental allergies. Alert the breeder, as there tends to be a genetic link.

    This is not veterinary advice; consult your veterinarian.

    #102555 Report Abuse

    Really good advice I think, I’m hoping it’s just a puppy being a puppy. Well wipe his feet off and see if that helps. The chewing is still mild so hoping it passes or is unrelated to allergies.

    #102556 Report Abuse

    Hi Brain,
    buy some “Malaseb” Medicated shampoo & bath weekly to wash off any allergens that may be on paws & skin, Malaseb is excellent for itchy skin, red paws, yeasty smelly skin, environment allergies & is mild enough to use daily….

    Have a look at “Canidae” they also make “Under The Sun” a cheaper range of dog formula’s, there’s Under The Sun, Puppy formula with healthy ingredients, page 1, bottom right..
    I think it’s Ok to feed a growing large breed pup a kibble that has healthy grains, like brown rice, oatmeal etc & also has potatoes, sweet potatoes, peas, blueberries, beans, carrots etc grain free ingredients as well, I don’t know what these kibbles are called they have both, I’ve noticed a lot of large breed puppy formula’s don’t have the bad old ingredients like corn, wheat, gluten meal & soy but will have healthy grains now…
    there’s Canidae Pure Foundations puppy grain free, page 3, top left
    then there is Canidae’s new vet formulated All Life Stages, Large Breed, Turkey Meal & Brown Rice formula on page 4, bottom right…..
    or there’s Canidae Life Stages large breed puppy, Duck Meal, Brown Rice & Lentils page 5

    I would look for 2 large breed kibbles that both are different brands & have a different protein & rotate between the two…..A rotational diet allows a better chance of providing a more complete & balanced diet…..This is particularly important for young animals, the idea is that by allowing short exposure to a wider variety of protein types, the immune system is primed to a larger range of potential allergens which strengthen the immune system & may reduce the risk of allergies or symptoms developing….
    I feed 1 brand kibble for breakfast & I feed a different brand & protein kibble for dinner..

    #102557 Report Abuse

    At 9 weeks old it is a slim to none chance that he’s experiencing a food allergy or sensitivity. Grain allergies are also extremely uncommon dispite what people on the internet say.

    Anon101 had the best suggestion of wiping his feet off when he comes in from outside. Constantly switching his food at only 9 weeks is liking to do more harm than good. Realistically his food shouldn’t have been switched until he had a chance to adjust to his new environment since the move can be stressful on them.

    #102558 Report Abuse

    I would suggest just plain water and towel dry for paw wipes and a very gentle puppy shampoo such as Seargent’s Fur So Fresh for baths (no more than once a week unless advise differently by your vet).
    Malaseb is an excellent shampoo especially when used in conjunction with other treatments, however, it may not be indicated for your pup.
    It is usually prescribed by a vet for specific skin conditions, and is a little pricey.
    Keep his diet simple and get him some safe chew toys, he will be teething soon :/

    This is not veterinary advice; consult your veterinarian

    #102559 Report Abuse

    I am very pleased with Zignature Whitefish kibble, I don’t know if Zignature makes a large breed puppy food, but if you go to their website they tend to answer questions promptly.
    The food is not cheap, but then neither is going back and forth to the vet.
    Sometimes it is worth it to pay a little bit more.

    Regarding grain free diets, hope this helps:
    excerpt below:
    Grain free diets have become all the rage in the last few years. I suspect this has stemmed from greater recognition of gluten sensitivity in humans. Most pet food companies have jumped on the band wagon following the marketing success of grain free human diets. The truth of the matter is that there are no dog or cat studies showing a health benefit to grain free foods. A myth has been perpetuated that grains are unhealthy. In fact, whole grains contribute vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids and are highly digestible by dogs and cats. Allergies to grains are actually very rare, and only the Irish Setter breed has been demonstrated to have a gluten sensitivity. Many grain free diets substitute potatoes and tapioca, which have less protein, more sugar, and less fiber. And typically these come at a higher cost.

    #102584 Report Abuse

    Thanks guys, lots of great information.

    We haven’t switched him off his original kibble yet. He’s only been home with us 1 week, we’re not going to mess with his diet until at least 3 weeks with us if not a bit longer.

    Pit, I agree we only want to change him once so we are wiping his legs and just monitoring him for the time being. We have a 3rd vaccination appointment in about 3 weeks, and we’ll have watched him long enough to talk about switching food and if we thing something is up with the chewing.

    I’ve heard good things about zignature as well, but they don’t do a large breed pup formula. We may just try Fromm Complete Health once he’s good to switch and see how he tolerates that.

    #102612 Report Abuse

    He continues to lick and mildly chew what primarily seems to be his back legs. When I rub, gently squeeze or pull on them he doesn’t react like there is pain. We rinsed his legs off pretty good yesterday and when I put him out this morning sure enough he sat down in the grass and licked his belly and back legs.

    We only notice it 3-4 times a day so it’s not constantly bugging him just occasionally.

    He’s still on the food the breeder had him on originally, Diamond Puppy so no food switch yet.

    If it continues another day or two I may take him back to the vet to have him checked out.

    #102615 Report Abuse

    The pollen count is high where I am.
    He’s just a puppy, he hasn’t fully developed his immune system yet.
    Try not to worry too much. But, obviously, check with the vet if it continues .

    #102620 Report Abuse


    I think that’s good advice. My vet’s office does not seem overly concerned, while they haven’t seen him specifically for that issue we had him in last week for his wellness check/2nd vaccine and they said he checked out perfectly. They left me with the “bring him in if you want, but it doesn’t sound overly alarming” response more or less.

    We are going to still watch it and wait another week before slowly transitioning him into a new food. I’ve had a lot of people in my area say allergies are worse this year than they’ve been in the past. He’s only chewing/licking 2-3 times a day at most and it’s quick then he’s done. I’m guessing it doesn’t warrant a special appointment unless we see an escalation. He has to go in later in July for another round of vaccines, we may just wait till then and ask.

    I think we are going to transition him into a new food sometime next week very slowly (Fromm Gold) but stick with the grain version for the time being. No need to exclude that unless the vet advises.

    #102621 Report Abuse

    He does seem to always try to eat grass, dandelions or whatever plant he can get his mouth on in our backyard. Not sure if that’s related or not, our old Lab seemed to always want to eat grass as well. I try to discourage it but can’t always catch him.

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