Health and Nutrition

Health & Nutrition


With all the latest dog food scares recently, it's difficult in recommending any certain commercial brand of dog food.  Our our dogs usually eat one of the following foods: 4 Health, Kirkland (Costco brand which is actually made by Diamond), Nature's Domain, Diamond Naturals or Purina Pro-Plan.  There are several other great dog foods out there such as Orijen, Timberwolf Organics, Wellness etc.  We also try to feed raw on occasion, such as chicken leg quarters, neck bones or other meats.  Frozen chicken leg quarters are great for chewing and cleaning teeth as well.

Most people with American Bulldogs recognize that these dogs can be susceptible to allergies, both inhaled and food type.  Many cannot tolerate corn-based foods.  In addition, some cannot tolerate wheat products.  Remember it was corn contaminated with aflatoxin mold and wheat gluten contaminated with melamine that sickened or killed many pets not so long ago.  We recommend food without "ground yellow corn" or "wheat gluten" etc.  Even some of the supposed better brands such as Eukanuba or Science Diet may have corn or other things in them. 

It is of the utmost importance that everyone research the companies and ingredients that goes into the dog foods they are using, to ensure they are making the right decision for their pets and pocketbooks.Our puppies are normally weaned on a diet of goat's milk, colostrum, yogurt and barley or oatmeal baby cereal.  They are gradually switched to a large breed puppy food or an adult life stage formula without corn, such Kirkland or Diamond Naturals.

From their first day, they are given a pediatric vitamin formulation designed for puppies.  They are also given human grade fish oil capsules and a special vitamin C formula as they grow.  We highly recommend vitamin C for both pups and adults. 
Most dog foods do not contain any form of vitamin C.  Unlike humans, a dog's liver is capable of generating it's own, however it is a proven fact that most dogs are low-end producers.  The formula we use includes bioflavonoids to help with absorption and is GMO free. 

We feel vitamin C and other quality supplements are essential to maintaining overall good health and immune function.  It just makes sense.  Dog food can sit on store shelves for long periods.  Some may have expiration dates, but do we really know how much nutrient content may be lost while just sitting there.  That is why we choose to supplement our dogs and pups.  They just seem to function and look better! 

Another quick note on vitamin C.  It's water soluable, thus it's not stored in the body.  What the dog doesn't use simply passes through it's system.  We take it ourselves and we wouldn't trust giving them anything of lesser quality, as far as vitamins or supplements go.  Just remember, if you start your dog on a vitamin C regime, start with a lower dose.  Build up gradually to allow your dog time to adjust to it. 

When it comes to other supplements, we also use and recommend Solid Gold's Sea Meal and Nupro Silver.  These are add in supplements that can be mixed in with the food.  Nupro Silver works well if you have a finicky dog.  It seems to be very palatable and is easy to mix in with their daily vittles.  It's a liver-flavored powder that can be used dry or make a gravy with.  It does have a strong garlic smell, so there might be a few put off by it.  You can buy Sea Meal and Nupro directly from their own websites.  In addition, many of the online vet suppliers or Amazon.com carry these products.  

Another product that is especially great for dogs with allergies is Nzymes.  The makers of Nzymes also make another product called Ox-E Drops which is a powerful oxidizing substance that has antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral effects.

We also use and highly recommend Pet King Brand products.  I believe in their products 100%!  They are the makers of Zymox, one of the best ear otic solutions out there.  If you are looking for a good ear cleanser or otic solution, then look no further.  It has no harsh ingredients, and uses a natural enzyme solution, to help clear up bacterial or yeast problems.  The cleanser and otic solution are amazing!!  All their products are!!  I really can't say enough about them.  We can't do without our Pet King Brand products!!  Just go to Amazon.com and type in Zymox.  You will see all the 5 star reviews, literally hundreds of them!!  Amazon carries most of the Pet King Brand products for less!

We also use the Vetericyn products.  They can be quite expensive, but well worth it in my opinion, esp when you have rough and tumble dogs, that are constantly getting cuts, scrapes and bulldozing through everything.

If you are looking for online vet supplies, the people at Revival have great customer service and are very reasonable on many products.  We usually order many of our wormers and vaccines from them.  

Below are some links for more info or ordering on the above products I mentioned.  For best pricing, check Amazon.com.  They are usually cheaper than buying from your vet or many other online venues.
 
Revival Animal  www.revivalanimal.com  (vet supplier)  
 

Solid Gold's website is www.solidgoldhealth.com. 

Nupro  www.nuprosupplements.com 

Nzymes & Ox-E Drops can be found at www.nzymes.com

Pet King Brands  www.petkingbrands.com  (for Zymox and other products) 

Vetericyn  www.vetericyn.com  
 

We would also like to share the following recipe with everyone.  We do make our own moist food when time permits, which I actually developed for Harley, who had been diagnosed with cancer.  He could not stand ANY form of canned dog food during his illness.  I have given the following recipe to several friends and family members who SWEAR by it!  It's very simple to make, and is especially helpful for pets that are compromised or ill. 

The following is enough to make a large batch which can be put in the fridge.  It can be divided into portions, and heated in the microwave at each meal and can even be frozen.  It could probably be canned as well, but I have not tried it that way yet. 

One important thing to note about this recipe...if your dog has a weight issue you may want to cut down on the salmon.  You can always add more chicken and brown rice, since salmon is a little high in fat content.   

Louette's Moist Dog Food Recipe

 

5 cans Veg All (no salt version)

5 cans Pink Salmon

1 large can chopped spinach

1 cup brown rice (white can be used also)

1 cup barley

3/4 cup of wheat germ or oat bran (optional)

1 family-sized pack chicken thighs

 

Cook chicken in large stock pot with plenty of water to make broth.  (Enough water to make sure chicken is covered)  Sometimes when the chicken is nearly done, I will add the barley and rice in the stock pot, so that it cooks in the chicken broth.  (Less pots to clean up!)  I cook the chicken to the falling off the bone point, so that it's easier to debone.  I remove the bones and leave everything else.  When the chicken, rice and barley mixture has cooled, I will add in the salmon, then drain and mix in the Veg All, spinach and wheat germ.  No need to cook anything, but the chicken, barley and rice.

You can also add any needed supplements.  I usually add in MSM, acidophilus and cranberry, after the mixture has cooled.  I keep it in a large covered container in the fridge.  It feeds 2 large dogs for a week (5-7 days).  You can also experiment with this recipe.  If your dog prefers it moister, add more water, which makes more broth or you can also NOT drain the salmon.  The oil is good for their coats, not to mention that it is gentle on sensitive stomachs.  If they like it dry, I add more wheat germ to help soak it up.  Try it and let us know the results!!  

 










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