Everything you need to know to make the best food choices for your Doodles! 




WELCOME TO THE FOOD GROUP - This group was started in an attempt to present well-researched and FACT-based information on the amazingly complicated and confusing issue of feeding our dogs. There are also many issues we would like to explore. We thought it would be helpful to put all of these questions, information, and feedback into one place here on DK where everyone can find it, contribute to it, ask questions, and learn together. 


We started this group because of personal experiences with many of the issues that are commonly discussed on dog forums regarding food, and because these experiences have led us to do extensive research in an attempt to obtain FACT-BASED knowledge of these issues, rather than relying on anecdotes, myths, and junk-science, much of it put out there by people who are trying to sell something. The 2007 pet food recalls in which thousands of dogs and cats died or were permanently sickened by foods that contained melamine from China substituted for glutens had a profound effect on some of us, and this group was started as an attempt to help educate others on manufacturing practices and pet nutrition so that they can avoid losing beloved pets because of unacceptable foods made by "Big Dog Food" companies. There are also many issues we would like to explore. We thought it would be helpful to put all of these questions, information, and feedback into one place here on DK where everyone can find it, contribute to it, ask questions, and learn together.  
 You can start a new discussion if you have a question, or you can continue in an existing discussion if you prefer. Please do try to use the search feature before starting a new discussion, though, to help eliminate duplicate discussions on the same topics. You can search through past discussions for a topic by clicking "View All" at the bottom of the Food Group discussion forum, and then entering a word or phrase in the box. You will usually find lots of info and possibly the answer to your question. There is a wealth of information here from many good sources.  

Products on our recommended lists have been screened not just for the ingredients themselves, but also for the sourcing of the ingredients.

Membership in this group is voluntary. Everyone is free to feed their dog whatever they choose, but it is assumed that you are here because you want to learn about better nutritional and commercial food options. All questions are welcome. Proselytizing, however, is not welcome. If you want to feed your dog Beneful or Ol' Roy, that's your right, and if you want to learn why those foods may be dangerous to your pet's health, we're happy to tell you. But recommendations for these, Iams, Purina, Hill's, and other products  that have killed other group members' dogs are not okay here, and may result in your being suspended from the group. Similarly, if you believe that the only proper way to feed a dog is with a prey model raw diet, that all kibbles are harmful, and/or that raw food or "holistic" diets and/or supplements such as coconut oil will cure diseases or health conditions, this is not the right group for you. We are fact based. Anyone recommending raw feeding or any type of holistic diet or supplement as a cure or treatment for allergies or illnesses will be suspended from the group.  

Welcome, and thanks for reading!


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  • Hi Karen! I need some help, please! Jaxson is going to be 6 years okd next month and has been on Orijen since he was a puppy. He eats Six Fish and Regional Red. Recently, he has been skipping a lot of meals. Other than that, he's fine.

    We are considering switching food. What are good alternates? I don't want to switch but my husband does and maybe it would be best. Tonight he decided he didn't want to eat even though he didn't eat breakfast either! 

    Please help! Thank you!

    Janet & Jaxson

    • Sometimes if Pepper is not eating (ie, skips a meal) I will add freeze dried liver, cut up small, heated in water to hydrate, and mixed in. (I get the Stewart Freeze Dried Treats 21 oz. Beef Liver). Usually, but not always, works. OTOH, recently, we have brought his (full, left) bowl out to the deck with us when we eat. He eats it right up! Did I say he's a delight?   ;^))

      I agree that a healthy, active dog is going to eat enough. Usually it's something as simple as heat or an upset stomach that resolves in a day or two. If he's drinking and not losing weight, I don't worry.

      Amazon.com : Stewart Freeze Dried Treats : Pet Supplies
      Amazon.com : Stewart Freeze Dried Treats : Pet Supplies
    • If an adult dog suddenly stops wanting to eat, chances are that it's not because he's suddenly decided he doesn't like the food that he's been happily eating for years. One rule of thumb I've learned the hard way is, when a dog tells you he doesn't feel like eating, believe him. The problem with switching foods at this point is that if you introduce something new and appealing, he may be tempted to eat it even though there is some health issue that has caused the inappetance. 
      If his energy levels are normal, he is drinking enough water to stay hydrated, and he seems otherwise well, I'd let it be for now. It may just be the heat, or possibly less activity, or there may be something else going on. It may be that as he is getting older, his metabolism is adjusting to less lean mass (happens to all of us, lol) and he doesn't need as much food as he once did. A normal healthy dog will not starve himself. 
      I'd give it some time. 
      The other thing I'd advise is that IF it is the case that he's simply tired of his food, rather than switch to a completely different formula, I'd try adding a few Stella & Chewy's Meal Mixer nuggets to his meals. I crush three of them over Jasper's Fromm kibble at each meal. He was the type of puppy who had to be coaxed to eat, even hand fed sometimes, and since I've been adding the S & C nuggets, he waits eagerly for his food bowl at each meal and chows down. So if a couple more weeks go by with Jaxson still skipping meals, and you feel pretty certain nothing is wrong with his health, you might try that. 

    • Thank you so much, Karen! Jaxson just went to his annual vet check up last week and there was nothing wrong with him. I also told the vet he wasn't eating every meal. She said don't worry about it, he was probably moderating his weight, like you mentioned. I like the Stella & Chewy idea you guys have used. I think I'll pick up some of that. I'd like to stay with Orijen since I still believe it is a great food!

      P. S. After some contemplation, Jaxson did decide to eat this morning!

    • I hope the Stella & Chewy's Meal Mixers do the trick. Be sure to adjust the amount of Orijen just slightly to allow for a few extra calories from the S & C's. Please keep us posted! 

    • This has done the trick!  I just add 4 nuggets, crumbled up, and he comes running at meal time!  Thanks so much for the suggestion rather than changing his entire diet!

    • Yay! So glad Jaxson likes the S & C! It made all the difference for us. 

    • Will do! I was thinking of only adding a few at each meal like you did and not what is recommended on the bag. I'll make a tweak to the amount of Orijen. Thanks again and have a great day!

    • When Charlie had his surgery and wasn't yet feeling like eating much, we purchased freeze dried Orijen.  I'd crumble VERY little and mix with his Orijem Kibble. One patty for all three dogs lasted for days - it didn't take much.  Using the freeze dried Orijen means you haven't changed anything - in case you find some health issue.  Be sure to check his mouth - he could have a cracked molar.

    • Hi Nancy, that's good idea too but I already bought the Stella & Chewy.  I think the Origen freeze dried treats are about the same as the Stella & Chewy Meal Mixers.  Or at least they look the same to me!  This seems to have done the trick.  He comes running at meal time!  He just went to the vet for a check up last week so I don't think there's anything wrong with his teeth.  Thanks for the tip!


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changing food to lower protein food

we have 2 doodles, 9 and 10 years old.   they ate acana and orijen until champion started process to sell.  at that point, we did not feel as comfortable with those.  ziwipeak was recommended by the very selective store where we buy our food and treats so we switched to that and dogs love it.  on their last lab work, both dogs had elevated levels of protein in their urine.  the vet recommended we change to just food for dogs.  i don't think that Karen has evaluated this brand.  generally, we…

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1 Reply · Reply by Karen, Jasper and Jackdoodle 45 minutes ago

Omega supplement?

Hello! After lots of research on here and shopping around locally, we have decided to start our 8week old puppy on Fromms puppy gold- the puppy options are poultry based (After 2 weeks of being home on his current food of course which is Nutrisource puppy). We plan on continuing with the Fromms Salmon once he gets off the puppy food. Should we supplement his puppy food with Salmon oil or is the Frooms puppy  "good enough" in Omega 3's? (If I did my calculations correctly, I believe it's a 5:1…

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2 Replies · Reply by Nadine Saubert on Wednesday

Can’t source orijen

Hi everyone, our 5 month old puppy has been in orijen puppy (yellow one) and doing really well on it. Unfortunately it is extremely hard to source in Australia especially due to covid. I'm thinking I may have to change to something else (so disappointing as we are so happy with it). Any suggestions on the best alternative ?

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5 Replies · Reply by Karen, Jasper and Jackdoodle Aug 2

Just found out our boy has Pancreatitis - Now what food to feed him?????

So I was searching through and got a bit overwhelmed with all the posts. Our boy was just diagnosed with Pancreatitis and now we are wondering which food is going to be better for him (once he's off his meds and such). We have always fed him an Earthborn Holistic food and most recently (last year or so) he has been on the E.H. Venture Duck version. Yeah, the duck is higher in fat content than the other varieties, but based on the vets recommendation over a year ago. Now of course we have more…

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3 Replies · Reply by Karen, Jasper and Jackdoodle Jul 10

Do you feed your adult dog once or twice a day?

My 18 month old goldendoodle, Nellie, (28 lbs) has the picky eater trait. I feed her Fromm's dogfood, 2/3 cup in the morning, 3/4 cup in the evening, with about 2 teaspoons chopped chicken, hamburger or steak leftovers as a topping to entice her to eat, and I also put a little warm water in it and stir it to get a little gravy going.  I started the topping and warm water when she was a puppy and not eating well, and it helped get her more interested in her food.  For the last few months she has…

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9 Replies · Reply by Karen, Jasper and Jackdoodle Jul 22

Help! Soft Stools in the P.M.

Hi Everyone, I have been reading a lot about recurring soft stools in the forum and I still need a bit of help. Most of the discussions centered around the puppy having swallowed a foreign object. But my pup had xrays done and there was nothing seen on film. So here's my pup's medical background that might give you some insight - I have an 11 month old mini golden doodle named Whiskey who has been through a lot in these past few months. He had coccidia since January and after several negative…

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3 Replies · Reply by Karen, Jasper and Jackdoodle May 20