Should I Feed an Expensive Food?
Price is not always the best indicator of dog food quality. It is true that the best foods ARE going to be fairly expensive. High quality foods are expensive to make. However, it is not true that all expensive foods are high quality. There are some foods with a high price tag that are cheaply made and with minimal nutritional value to a dog. Sadly, for the most part, these expensive foods rely heavily on marketing to veterinarians and big kick-backs to their practices. Most, if not all of these foods are full of corn, vegetable sources of protein, and meat by-products. Corn is a cheap filler with no nutritional value to dogs. Vegetable proteins are also cheap and is not the best protein source for dogs. Meat by-products are the left-over meats at a food processing plant and are labeled unfit for human consumption. Many food companies put their money into marketing instead of into the food itself.
Feeding grain-free has become very popular in recent years for good reason. Grain-free food often has more meat in it which is what dogs were designed to eat. However, grain does have its place for many dogs. Though grain has little nutritional value, it does provide fiber. Fiber is beneifial to young puppies and dogs with more sensitive stomachs. Many dogs cannot handle high protein, grain-free dry dog food without having loose stools.
We at Summer Brook feed both foods with and without grain depending on the dog and on the situation. We feed our pregnant and nursing dogs differently from our other dogs as their needs are different. Though there are many low-quality foods that we'd never consider feeding our dogs, we don't believe there is any one dog food that is perfect for all dogs, all the time. Our puppies are kept on TLC which we think has just the right balance of foods for growing puppies. Our adults, however, are rotated between a variety of foods.