Newbie EM owner going crazy over food research

Discussion in 'Health & Nutritional Care' started by Hugo's, Dec 26, 2020.

  1. Hugo's

    Hugo's New Member

    I am hoping and praying that someone can help me here. I have so many questions and my vet is not well-schooled in Mastiff nutrition. He just suggested Royal Canin Giant Breed, but those ingredients look horrible to me.

    I am a first time EM owner. He is 12 weeks old and around 50 pounds. He's averaging around a .5 pound daily weight gain. The breeder said to put him on Doc Roy's Healthy Bones Calcium Phosphorus supplement until he is around 6 months old. Thoughts on that?

    Hugo came home from the breeder eating Iams Large breed puppy food and I have not switched him yet because the research is overwhelming and paralyzing me. I am so afraid to make a mistake. Hugo is a bit itchy, so I am thinking about switching him to a food that doesn't have chicken.

    I thought about a salmon or fish food, but most of the acceptable ones I have come across are grain free...and I have read that is good and then the next article says it's bad for their heart.

    I am not going to be feeding a raw diet because I also have 6 kids to feed ;) but I do want to give him the best quality dog food I can. If someone said to you: here is what I want....chicken free, 1.2/.8 calcium phosphorus ratio, 23-27% protein and 12-14% fat, what would you say?
  2. Michele

    Michele Super Moderator Staff Member

    I had a chihuahua for 18 years. I tried different foods. He had to have surgery for a stone, due to the amount of protein in the food I was feeding. He ended up on Royal Canin and he did fabulous on it.
  3. Kyle S

    Kyle S Well-Known Member

    Hello and Welcome to the forum!

    lots of good information here you will find.

    There is tons of food out there that you can choose from it and lots of people will steer you in many different directions so it can be hard deciding on which route you want to take.
    I have an EM myself and I had the same difficulty.

    The food I feed my 7 month old is Acana Large Breed Adult. He ate that even as a puppy. No need for puppy food with this mixture.
    He is just turning 7 months old he’s nice and lean. Very muscular and if I had to guess 160lbs just coming in at 7 months.
    A bag of it cost $91 CAD plus tax for a 37.5lbs bag which is a decent value for what it is. What’s nice is it has a higher calorie content so you don’t have to feed as much. 407cal per cup. 31% protein. 15% fat. 1.4% calcium 1.1% phosphorus.
    Also includes omega 3 and 6 along with 1500mg/kg glucosamine and 900mg/kg Chondroitin

    My little guy has been steadily eating 12 cups a day of this probably since he was 3 months old. Food cost is around $8.32 per day
    I also give him 1 “head to tail” hip and joint formula per day which includes 563mg glucosamine and 200mg chondroitin so per day my guy gets around 2400mg glucosamine and 1400mg chondroitin.

    in total for his food and vitamins he runs me $10 a day CAD to maintain him. Not including vet checkups. Monthly nail trims. His toys and bones. All the crap he chewed in my house I had to replace from him teething.

    So which ever way you slice it , he will be costly. Just do your research and choose what you think is best for your puppy. I’m sure he will be happy as long as you love him and hug him. Mine loves hugs.
    Please post photos of your little guy I can’t wait to see him!!! :)
    Feel free to check out my thread about my OEM.
  4. MastiffMillie

    MastiffMillie Well-Known Member

    I've just had all of this with our new DDB pup.... And I've had 2 mastiffs before! I was still in a tizz with it all!

    I was reading advice to put mastiff pups on adult food, then I would read not to do that as its outdated advice. Everything conflicted!

    I like to feed my dogs cold pressed food as, like you, I do not want to feed raw so this is the next best option. I also want to steer clear of chicken as poos have been too soft on chicken based food . Like you, our pup also left the breeder on Iams Large Breed, which has poor reviews and I knew I would not keep her on it.

    I'm not sure where you are based but I'm in the UK and I have settled on Markus Muehle Black Angus junior with a view to switch her to the adult version before 1 year old. I'll need to look at my research notes to remind me when exactly though!

    Her stools are good on it and when I used the calculator that someone on here recommended, the calcium/phosphorus ratio worked out well. I'll link that for you.

    Hope that helps!

  5. Richie

    Richie Active Member

    Good luck on your search, because this is a hard one. The saying I go by is: The best food for your dog, is the food your dog does best on.

    Some people will say they don't feed chicken and others will say chicken is all they use and their dog does great on it. For chicken to have such a bad reputation there are a lot of top brand dog foods with chicken in it. Also, a lot of people who swear by raw diet feed raw chicken so I don't let chicken be the deciding factor for or against.

    I'm no expert and have changed my CC feed three times already because of soft stool.... and he is on Lamb and rice, so maybe I should switch to chicken :)

    For reference you can visit this site:

    The have links to:
    1) Best large breed puppy food
    2) Best large breed food
    3) Best dog food
    4) Etc.

    They provide a lot of analysis and some of the food isn't super expensive... but get use to reading labels it's the best information available. Pay attention to things like - Meat vs Meat Meal (Meat being Chicken, Lamb, Fish...). I thought meat meal was worse... it's actually better, it means there is a higher concentration of that meat in the feed. I also try to focus on the first five or six ingredients as my guide... and for me I try to stay within my budget... I don't believe more expensive means better...

    you will see both positive and and negative reviews on their information... so it will come down to what you feel best and what your budget will allow.
  6. Boxergirl

    Boxergirl Well-Known Member

    The only thing I have to add is that I think a supplement of calcium/phosphorus isn't a good idea. That ratio is the most important in choosing a food and adding supplemental amounts to a food with the correct ratio seems to be unnecessary and possibly risky.
  7. Loverboy Skyline

    Loverboy Skyline Well-Known Member

    I feed Acana and rotate that with Stella & Chewy's. I would feed Orijen, but Acana is basically a cheaper version of Orijen with a little less meat but still a lot more meat than a traditional vet would recommend. I think Royal Canin and Iams are both crap. I would feed raw if I had the money, but I think I'm doing the next best thing. Most vets have been indoctrinated by the big pet food companies who fund all the vet schools. You should also keep that in mind when you read stuff that's funded by the big pet food companies too, like the one about DCM and grain free. Money talks. There's old commercials from cigarette companies getting endorsements from doctors before we knew the truth about them. The same thing is happening with pet foods.

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