This post is rather niche, so my apologies in advance. If you don’t have a dog then you’ll probably want to simply go no further and – perhaps, if you’re after more reading material – click on over to the new post I’ve written on The Uphill. If you have a dog and you can get it to eat without a problem then ditto – you’ll probably want to click away.
But if you, like me, have a dog with a constantly dicky tummy, you might find this of interest.
Dexter the Cockapoo is now three. He’s had ongoing issues with his stomach since almost the first month he came home – soft stools, no stools, weird stools, blockages and periods of simply not eating. Always investigated at the vets but never with a real solution.
After the last serious bout of tummy stuff (it was well over a year ago, thankfully – and Mr AMR still swears that it was because the dog licked a toad at the farm we were renting a barn from!) the vets put Dexter on a Royal Canin Sensitivity Diet, which cost about seventy-eight million pounds a day. He started off eating it very well but soon went off it and had to be coaxed and bribed with bits of rice and “treats” mixed in to get him to eat anything.
Anyway, to cut a long story short, I started researching dog foods online to try and find one that he would readily eat but that wouldn’t upset his stomach, and I came across this brilliant website: Dog Food Directory.
As far as I can tell, it’s a totally impartial non-sponsored website that reviews (nearly) every food on the market and has a very clever filtering system that refines your search so that only the relevant reviews appear. Your dog’s age, breed and weight, for example, or the daily cost, type of food and nutrient levels you’re after. Each food then has a rating and quite a detailed breakdown of what’s in it – cutting through the bullsh*t, basically.
What an eye-opener! It seems that many of the vet-recommended foods are full of absolute rubbish, even if they’re apparently “non-allergenic” or what have you. Even many of the premium, niche foods get a so-so review. In the end, I used all of the filters and then chose the food on my list that had the highest rating – a 5/5 – the Aatu 80/20.
Now this isn’t by any means a dog food recommendation post – it’s a nudge towards the website, if you too need to try and find a good food for your pooch*. But I have to say that Dexter loves the Aatu, his toilet habits are the best they’ve ever been and he’s just stockier, happier and sparklier eyed. I’m impressed.
There were a few others on the list with a top rating, but I was conducting this search on my iPhone whilst in Pets at Home and Aatu was right in front of me on the shelf! It was a sign… Also the baby was kicking off and there were no guinea pigs to look at so I had to be quick.
Sorry for the crazily specialised post this week, but I’ve been meaning to write about this for weeks and the dog rarely gets a big mention on here. Take a look at the Dog Food Directory here and let me know if you find a good solution to your picky/dicky dog tummy problems!
(*Please don’t comment about raw diets below, I just can’t. I barely have enough time to prepare the humans any dinner, let alone chop up bones with a cleaver and weigh raw meat and then disinfect everything and at the same time try and stop the baby from eating it out of the bowl… Also, please listen to your vet if your dog has been prescribed a certain food or medication. We were prescribed over a year ago and it was fine to introduce other foods.)