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Hey Everyone,

New to the forums here with a brand new boxer puppy, Charlee. See my post in the welcome section with pictures...

We've been having some food issues recently. When we picked up Charlee from the breeder she was on some sort of puppy-chow (Yes, I know....not the best). We slowly weened her off of that to a Blue Buffalo Puppy formula. She didn't seem to like it much (even with drizzling a little warm water on it), had digestive issues, and our vet steered us away from it citing some study that it had too much of a certain mineral in it or something of that nature and that it could have some long-term harmful effects. So we weaned her off of that to the Acana Pacifica formula. Again, same digestive issues, lots of gas and diarrhea and she generally just wasn't interested in the food. We then made the transition to the Orijen Puppy formula made with chicken, turkey, and fish. She seemed to like the food a little better, but again, lots of digestive issues, gas, diarrhea, etc. I was a bit reluctant to heed my vet's advice, but all along, he had been telling us to put her on Royal Canin. It doesn't have the best ratings from dogfoodadvisor.com (unlike Acana and Orijen), but he apparently has raised several Boxers on this formula and told us it was great.

Well, we're currently in the transition process with Royal Canin from the Orijen puppy. The bag I have her on is the Royal Canin Puppy - Medium, and she seems to really love it. Also, much less digestive issues, no gas, and her stools finally seem to be firming up. Is it possible that the Blue Buffalo, Acana, and Orijen foods could just be too rich for my pup's stomach?

I'm a bit reluctant to take her off the Orijen since I know it's such a high quality food even though she just can't stomach it. Maybe try again when she's a bit older? Are there any objections to Royal Canin? They don't have the best rating on dogfoodadvisor.com and I also know they have a Boxer formula for when she gets a bit older, but to me that just seems to be a bit of a marketing gimmick, no?

Currently she's at the 60(RC)/40(Orijen) part of the diet transition. Long-term, could we keep her on this ratio or is it better to stick with just one brand? Currently feeding her 3.5 cups/day split into 3 meals.

Sorry for the long post, but thanks in advance!
 

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Royal Canine is not a good quality food.

If Origen is too rich there are others you can try of the same standards...

Acana (same company as Orijen but waaaay less protein)
First Mate
Taste of the Wild

These are just some. And they are far more healthier and nutritious than Royal Canin.

Your pup may have an intolerance to one common ingredient... I know a lot of people here have luck with Blue Buffalo.. Then again every dog is different. Food can be so annoying lol they are so sensitive.

And yes you can feed two different kibbles mixed together. Have a Look Into First Mate, it's pretty easy on their tummies...


Welcome by the way!!!


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What type of digestive issues is she having? Loose stools? Full blown diahareia? BB, Orijen and even the fish verity of acana are probably much higher in protein than whatever puppy chow type stuff she came with and initially would probably cause some form of loose stool. If you are talking soft serve ice cream type loose I would stick with one of the 3 before id poison my dog with canin and add pumpkin to it to firm her up a bit. It can take her a while to adjust fully to a new food. Try not to switch foods too often and give her a chance to fully adjust.

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My breeder was feeding Fromm Puppy Gold and that's what I feed my girl. She's 6 months of age today and has done very well on it. Although it's a good quality food, my breeder found that Orijen is just too high in protein.
 

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I guesb I will be the devil's advocate. I had the same issue with Tyson when he was a puppy. The vet suggested the same food. He went from being the miserable dog to the complete opposite. I fed him one of the large bags. When it came time to buy a new one, I bought a medium size bag of both the RC and BB. I slowly mixed them in and he has been on BB ever since. We were dealing with this issue with him for probably 1.5 years.
 

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That's quite a lot of food changes for a puppy. The stomach upset could the result of rapid food change in itself, not the actual food. How long are you taking for the transition? Also, it's a slippery slope if you let your dog dictate what he "likes" in a food ;) Good nutrition is the most important factor.
 

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What type of digestive issues is she having? Loose stools? Full blown diahareia? BB, Orijen and even the fish verity of acana are probably much higher in protein than whatever puppy chow type stuff she came with and initially would probably cause some form of loose stool. If you are talking soft serve ice cream type loose I would stick with one of the 3 before id poison my dog with canin and add pumpkin to it to firm her up a bit. It can take her a while to adjust fully to a new food. Try not to switch foods too often and give her a chance to fully adjust.

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Initially it was full blown diarrhea and then has turned to just softer stools.
 

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That's quite a lot of food changes for a puppy. The stomach upset could the result of rapid food change in itself, not the actual food. How long are you taking for the transition? Also, it's a slippery slope if you let your dog dictate what he "likes" in a food ;) Good nutrition is the most important factor.
I was usually taking about a week or so for the transition. It sounds like I need to hold out for a MUCH longer time. Thanks for the advice guys.

I'm afraid to try and switch again so I might just try and stick with the Orijen Puppy and start backing down on the Royal Canin and see where it goes. Should I be worried though about the higher protein count in the Orijen though? I heard that could have some negative long-term effects?

Why does it seem like Vets recommend poorer quality foods? Seems like a few posters here have experienced that.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Royal Canine is not a good quality food.

If Origen is too rich there are others you can try of the same standards...

Acana (same company as Orijen but waaaay less protein)
First Mate
Taste of the Wild

These are just some. And they are far more healthier and nutritious than Royal Canin.

Your pup may have an intolerance to one common ingredient... I know a lot of people here have luck with Blue Buffalo.. Then again every dog is different. Food can be so annoying lol they are so sensitive.

And yes you can feed two different kibbles mixed together. Have a Look Into First Mate, it's pretty easy on their tummies...


Welcome by the way!!!


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Looks like I have a local pet shop that sells First Mate. Would you recommend the Puppy formula? That's if I really want to try and introduce another food as I'm a bit reluctant to keep changing.
 

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If you just had softer stools on the orijen I would stick with it for a while since you already have it and feeding it. You can add some pumpkin to it till the stool is normal. Once it is normal for a while you can start backing off the pumpkin and see how it goes. Max had some loose stools on the 6 fish orijen when I first switched and the pumpkin helped till he adjusted to it. Also you may not need to feed the full amount on the bag. I cut back the amount and that helped as well and he is still gaining weight and growing. Orijen is rich and the recommended amounts were more then he needs. If you find it's still too rich you can slowly transition to another 4 or 5 star food with less protein just get away from royal canin.

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Thats way to many food changes for a puppy and is most likely the reason you are having issues. A food transition should take 3-4 weeks, it's meant to be slow to avoid stomach and intestinal upset. Start with 25% new food and increase by 25% each week.
 

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Thats way to many food changes for a puppy and is most likely the reason you are having issues. A food transition should take 3-4 weeks, it's meant to be slow to avoid stomach and intestinal upset. Start with 25% new food and increase by 25% each week.
I agree. Way too many food changes in very little time.
 

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Yep, I agree...I think I rushed the process a bit. Didn't mean to harm the little girl...more so just owner ignorance! Glad I found this place....appreciate the info guys!
 

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Yep, I agree...I think I rushed the process a bit. Didn't mean to harm the little girl...more so just owner ignorance! Glad I found this place....appreciate the info guys!
Not to worry. It's real easy to get concerned and all worked up when your pup isn't right. I lost my last boxer in october to cancer so I'm always a bit on edge if my new pup seems off even just a little. I have only been on this site a few months but everyone here has a lot of knowledge and are ready to help with all our boxer issues big and small.

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Looks like I have a local pet shop that sells First Mate. Would you recommend the Puppy formula? That's if I really want to try and introduce another food as I'm a bit reluctant to keep changing.
Hi, I would say yes to the puppy formula for first mate

I love love how good quality Orijen is, arcana too made by same company but lower protein, but I have to agree with you Orijen is very high protein and not every dog can handle that...yes you need to change the food at a waaaay slower pace but I would transition to a good quality food and not royal Canin if you are asking me personally :) first mate is a high quality food, pretty easy for them to stomach, they don't use ethoxyquin in their fish products and source all locally as much as possible from places in Canada (except their Australian lamb obviously) and its all made in abbotsford bc

If my dog was not allergic to chicken, and I had to choose a kibble (I feed raw dehydrated) it would be Acana or First Mate

You could pick up a small bag of first mate and start adding a sprinkle to the top of what you currently are doing and slowly like over three to four weeks or longer start increasing the amount of first mate and lessen the other two. Like someone else said you need to get your dog on one food for long enough for it to adjust, could take a couple months. Pumpkin and a probiotic can help with the poops :)


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Hi, I would say yes to the puppy formula for first mate

I love love how good quality Orijen is, arcana too made by same company but lower protein, but I have to agree with you Orijen is very high protein and not every dog can handle that...yes you need to change the food at a waaaay slower pace but I would transition to a good quality food and not royal Canin if you are asking me personally :) first mate is a high quality food, pretty easy for them to stomach, they don't use ethoxyquin in their fish products and source all locally as much as possible from places in Canada (except their Australian lamb obviously) and its all made in abbotsford bc

If my dog was not allergic to chicken, and I had to choose a kibble (I feed raw dehydrated) it would be Acana or First Mate

You could pick up a small bag of first mate and start adding a sprinkle to the top of what you currently are doing and slowly like over three to four weeks or longer start increasing the amount of first mate and lessen the other two. Like someone else said you need to get your dog on one food for long enough for it to adjust, could take a couple months. Pumpkin and a probiotic can help with the poops :)


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Thanks for the feedback. Looks like they sell a Puppy/Endurance formula which sources fish as the only protein. Is this a good choice from their lineup?
 

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Thanks for the feedback. Looks like they sell a Puppy/Endurance formula which sources fish as the only protein. Is this a good choice from their lineup?

The only ingredient I don't know about is the calcium propionate as a preservative, I don't know what this is and haven't researched it at all but this company is apparently "natural" so I am trusting its fine...

If I were feeding first mate and I had a puppy that I knew was not allergic to fish then I would give the puppy/endurance a try for sure! Potato is the first ingredient and fish is next, tomato pomace is a nutrient rich filler like wheat germ and beet pulp, then chicken fat, those are the only ingredients until you get to the vitamins and minerals (first mate is a limited ingredient line) so at least we know that there aren't secondary protein sources such as pea protein etc. and it would make sense that the protein not just mainly but completely comes from the fish...there that is my personal analysis of the puppy formula hehe personally knowing the quality that this company strives for I would say this is a great choice!


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