Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

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Uberas
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Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by Uberas »

Hello,
I have an 11 year old schnauzer who has (almost) spent his whole life on royal canin miniature schnauzer, about six months ago the vet recommended switching to RC gastrointensive low fat because of elevated triglyceride levels.
Before that I wasn't interested in food, I just thought royal canin was ok, but since a few years its quality is much worse than before (as if with fat?) and I thought maybe to change food for some better, possibly similar composition but maybe cheaper, because I have the impression that with royal canin you pay a little for the brand?
Greetings

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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by zeta1454 »

Hello Kamil and welcome to the Forum :)

Is your schnauzer ill or were the elevated triglyceride levels found on a routine blood test? Many miniature schnauzers have high levels of fat in the blood but many live full lives with no illness as a result so the blood levels are not necessarily a cause for concern, if your schnauzer is not showing signs of illness. However, you are right that Royal Canin is not a good quality food and I would recommend changing to a less processed food altogether. We feed our dogs on prepared raw food but, if you don’t want to feed raw, you could consider home cooked food instead with good quality meat, fish and some vegetables. Omega 3 fatty acids in fish are thought to be good for dogs with hyperlipidemia.

There are some links here which may give you some more information about hyperlipidemia and suggestions of low fat recipes for home cooked meals:

https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/hyperlipidemia

https://www.whole-dog-journal.com/food/ ... ood-diets/

If you want to buy a ready prepared food, I would look for one that is not highly processed (kibble) and which has named quality meat / fish and vegetables. Often it is processed fats which cause problems for dogs and naturally occurring fat in meat and fish is more easily digested and does not cause illness.
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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by Uberas »

zeta1454 wrote:
19 May 2021, 17:56
Hello Kamil and welcome to the Forum :)

Is your schnauzer ill or were the elevated triglyceride levels found on a routine blood test? Many miniature schnauzers have high levels of fat in the blood but many live full lives with no illness as a result so the blood levels are not necessarily a cause for concern, if your schnauzer is not showing signs of illness. However, you are right that Royal Canin is not a good quality food and I would recommend changing to a less processed food altogether. We feed our dogs on prepared raw food but, if you don’t want to feed raw, you could consider home cooked food instead with good quality meat, fish and some vegetables. Omega 3 fatty acids in fish are thought to be good for dogs with hyperlipidemia.

There are some links here which may give you some more information about hyperlipidemia and suggestions of low fat recipes for home cooked meals:

https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/hyperlipidemia

https://www.whole-dog-journal.com/food/ ... ood-diets/

If you want to buy a ready prepared food, I would look for one that is not highly processed (kibble) and which has named quality meat / fish and vegetables. Often it is processed fats which cause problems for dogs and naturally occurring fat in meat and fish is more easily digested and does not cause illness.
Thanks for your advice :)
Elevated triglyceride levels were discovered by accident, and simply the vet recommended a lighter food. From the biochemical profile study, the triglycerides were 4.18 (366.67) mmol/l (mg/dl) out of a normal range of 0.110-1.71 (9.65-150) mmol/l (mg/dl). But apart from that, we did an abdominal and lower abdominal USG scan and the liver, pancreas etc looked ok.
The only problem we have now is a slight hypertrophy of the prostate (to be expected with 11yo), the dog has not been neutralised and we are thinking about it (but probably too late). The dog has never had any digestive problems, but eating anything other than dry food is unfortunately not possible due to my lack of time and his practically no teeth. I have thought about switching to wet food, like cans - but the costs are much higher, and the doctor said that it would be healthier to give dry food, with soaking it first which I do now.
Could I ask for any recommendations on dry food? I am completely unfamiliar with the UK market, but due to my parents' inadequate care of my dog abroad I am forced to bring him back to England. Would be perfect to get something around the price of £40 per 12kg (£3.33/kg)
Last edited by Uberas on 19 May 2021, 18:24, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by zeta1454 »

That is good news that there are no signs of issues with internal organs and as you say, at 11 years it is probably no point in having your mini castrated. The trauma of surgery is always worse for older dogs and only to be considered for serious illness.

Prepared raw food for dogs can be bought as very fine mince - almost paste from some companies and, when we moved our dogs to this almost 14 years ago, two of the minis were 11 and 12 years old and had lost several teeth. We also wean 4 week old puppies on to raw and they have no teeth at all. The Natural Instinct dog food company do offer very fine mince as I recall:

https://www.naturalinstinct.com/natural ... w-dog-food

However, if you do prefer a dry dog food, you could have a look at Simpsons which has better nutritional value than Royal Canin and is not much more expensive than the price you suggest:

https://www.simpsonspremium.com/dogs/ad ... mon-potato

The All About Dog Food website has plenty of information about the nutritional status of many ranges of dog food too:

https://www.allaboutdogfood.co.uk/
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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by Dawnspell »

If you use the quick search facility on allaboutdogfood site you can put your budget price per day as one of the factors. Price per kg doesnt really work for the quality of food compared to price. High quality will be higher price per kg but you would feed less than the cheaper brands making the price difference less.
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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by Uberas »

zeta1454 wrote:
20 May 2021, 08:29
That is good news that there are no signs of issues with internal organs and as you say, at 11 years it is probably no point in having your mini castrated. The trauma of surgery is always worse for older dogs and only to be considered for serious illness.

Prepared raw food for dogs can be bought as very fine mince - almost paste from some companies and, when we moved our dogs to this almost 14 years ago, two of the minis were 11 and 12 years old and had lost several teeth. We also wean 4 week old puppies on to raw and they have no teeth at all. The Natural Instinct dog food company do offer very fine mince as I recall:

https://www.naturalinstinct.com/natural ... w-dog-food

However, if you do prefer a dry dog food, you could have a look at Simpsons which has better nutritional value than Royal Canin and is not much more expensive than the price you suggest:

https://www.simpsonspremium.com/dogs/ad ... mon-potato

The All About Dog Food website has plenty of information about the nutritional status of many ranges of dog food too:

https://www.allaboutdogfood.co.uk/
Thanks for the recommendations, they look good, mostly the ones from Natural Instinct. I just have some concerns, my dog due to his painful teeth started swallowing the food at some point - now that we have fixed the teeth, or rather the ones that could - he still swallows everything, so I soak the food for him. Will he not choke on such food?
Dawnspell wrote:
20 May 2021, 09:37
If you use the quick search facility on allaboutdogfood site you can put your budget price per day as one of the factors. Price per kg doesnt really work for the quality of food compared to price. High quality will be higher price per kg but you would feed less than the cheaper brands making the price difference less.
I have seen this website, but I would rather follow the experience of people on the forum - unfortunately, we were using food recommended by this site "Orijen Adult" - it smelled like pedigree and my dog had parasites, so I would prefer something tried and tested so as not to test it and make revolutions in my dog's stomach (after all, he has been eating RC for almost his whole life)
Last edited by Uberas on 20 May 2021, 11:47, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by zeta1454 »

I think our schnauzers hoover up their food with little chewing and they have never choked on the raw minces but you can get dog bowls / dishes that help to slow down fast eaters if you are worried that Wawel does swallow his food too quickly. There are some examples here but you can probably find more on an online search.

https://www.petsathome.com/shop/en/pets ... ow-feeders
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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by Uberas »

zeta1454 wrote:
20 May 2021, 12:57
I think our schnauzers hoover up their food with little chewing and they have never choked on the raw minces but you can get dog bowls / dishes that help to slow down fast eaters if you are worried that Wawel does swallow his food too quickly. There are some examples here but you can probably find more on an online search.

https://www.petsathome.com/shop/en/pets ... ow-feeders
Thanks for the ideas, appreciate :)

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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by Dawnspell »

If you are wanting a kibble type food that goes soft really quickly then get one of the cold pressed foods. There are several producers now Forthglade, Tribal, Eden, Huggs, Lukullus.

I've got Tribal at the minute which if we've had roast chicken I pour the juices over some it goes soft really quick then I stuff hooves or spread on lick mats. Huggs and Forthglade also break down easily.

Eden also do a semi moist type kibble as do Platinum not tried either of those as not readily available over here.
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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by Uberas »

The dog is still abroad for the moment, and I need to buy food for him - I've looked through the local offer and I don't see any ready-made products, so I guess he will have to eat dry food for a while. I was thinking about Brit Care Senior Light - it has 12% fat instead of 7% as in RC, will it be good for those elevated triglycerides?

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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by zeta1454 »

Uberas wrote:
10 Jun 2021, 07:28
The dog is still abroad for the moment, and I need to buy food for him - I've looked through the local offer and I don't see any ready-made products, so I guess he will have to eat dry food for a while. I was thinking about Brit Care Senior Light - it has 12% fat instead of 7% as in RC, will it be good for those elevated triglycerides?
For a kibble the ingredients look OK :)

I wouldn’t worry about 12% fat as this is still not very high. I think you said that your schnauzer wasn’t ill / diagnosed with an issue due to elevated triglycerides but that the vet had just commented on the level and said it would be better to use a lower fat content food so it should fine for now.
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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by Uberas »

zeta1454 wrote:
10 Jun 2021, 14:57
Uberas wrote:
10 Jun 2021, 07:28
The dog is still abroad for the moment, and I need to buy food for him - I've looked through the local offer and I don't see any ready-made products, so I guess he will have to eat dry food for a while. I was thinking about Brit Care Senior Light - it has 12% fat instead of 7% as in RC, will it be good for those elevated triglycerides?
For a kibble the ingredients look OK :)

I wouldn’t worry about 12% fat as this is still not very high. I think you said that your schnauzer wasn’t ill / diagnosed with an issue due to elevated triglycerides but that the vet had just commented on the level and said it would be better to use a lower fat content food so it should fine for now.
Thanks, I'm totally unfamiliar with foods, I saw that some people recommended brit care as superior to RC but comparing the composition I don't know - RC has chicken which is supposedly not good for dogs and usually causes allergies, except that my dog probably doesn't have it since he ate so much and he was fine? Chicken itself has a better assimilability though.. On the other hand RC has rice which has a low glycemic index and Brit has potatoes so the more I read the more I don't know which food is better

Anyway, ordered Brit see how it goes. Thanks for your help :)

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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by zeta1454 »

Uberas wrote:
10 Jun 2021, 15:20
zeta1454 wrote:
10 Jun 2021, 14:57
Uberas wrote:
10 Jun 2021, 07:28
The dog is still abroad for the moment, and I need to buy food for him - I've looked through the local offer and I don't see any ready-made products, so I guess he will have to eat dry food for a while. I was thinking about Brit Care Senior Light - it has 12% fat instead of 7% as in RC, will it be good for those elevated triglycerides?
For a kibble the ingredients look OK :)

I wouldn’t worry about 12% fat as this is still not very high. I think you said that your schnauzer wasn’t ill / diagnosed with an issue due to elevated triglycerides but that the vet had just commented on the level and said it would be better to use a lower fat content food so it should fine for now.
Thanks, I'm totally unfamiliar with foods, I saw that some people recommended brit care as superior to RC but comparing the composition I don't know - RC has chicken which is supposedly not good for dogs and usually causes allergies, except that my dog probably doesn't have it since he ate so much and he was fine? Chicken itself has a better assimilability though.. On the other hand RC has rice which has a low glycemic index and Brit has potatoes so the more I read the more I don't know which food is better

Anyway, ordered Brit see how it goes. Thanks for your help :)
I just had a quick look at the ingredients of Royal Canin Gastro food and the Brit Care Senior Light:

RC Gastro:
“Rice, dehydrated poultry protein, wheat, barley, hydrolysed animal proteins, beet pulp, animal fats, minerals, yeasts products, fish oil, mono - and diglycerides of palmitic and stearic acids esterified with citric acid, psyllium husks and seeds, fructo-oligosaccharides (0.48%), hydrolysed yeast (source of manno-oligo-saccharides) (0.19%), marigold extract (source of lutein). Vitamin A: 16500 IU, Vitamin D3: 1000 IU, Iron (3b103): 45mg, Iodine (3b201, 3b202): 4.5mg, Copper (3b405, 3b406): 14mg, Manganese (3b502, 3b504): 58mg, Zinc (3b603, 3b605, 3b606): 135mg, Selenium (3b801, 3b811, 3b812): 0.08mg - Technological additives: Clinoptilolite of sedimentary origin: 5g - Preservatives - Antioxidants.”

And Brit Care Senior Light:

“salmon dried (32%), potatoes (32%), salmon protein (8%), dried apples, chicken fat (preserved with tocopherols), dried beet pulp, natural flavors, salmon oil (2%), brewer’s yeast, hydrolyzed crustacean shells (a source of glucosamine, 260 mg/kg), cartilage extract (a source of chondroitin, 160 mg/kg), mannanoligosaccharides (150 mg/kg), herbs and fruits (rosemary, cloves, citrus, curcuma, 150 mg/kg), fructooligosaccharides (100 mg/kg), yucca schidigera (100 mg/kg), inulin (90 mg/kg), milk thistle (75 mg/kg).“

and I think the reason that the Brit Care is regarded as superior is that it lists the percentage of the main ingredients which gives you an idea of how much of it is in the food. Some brands call their food ‘chicken’ or ‘fish’ and there is actually hardly any of the named protein in it. With the Brit Care you at least know there is 32% dried salmon and 32% potato etc. With the RC food the ingredients should be listed with the highest proportion first which is actually ‘rice’ and there is no indication of whether this is brown (which is best) or white and if there is 30% or 50% or more! It also lists ‘poultry’ and ‘animal’ as the description of the sources of protein and fat and additional fish oil none of these are specific to a particular bird / animal / fish so you don’t really know exactly what is in it. It also includes too much grain to my mind too - rice, wheat and barley which are not ideal for dogs. Potatoes are not wonderful either in large quantities but could be better tolerated than grains. Of the 2 products I would rate the Brit Care as better from that point of view :)
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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by Uberas »

zeta1454 wrote:
10 Jun 2021, 16:10
Uberas wrote:
10 Jun 2021, 15:20
zeta1454 wrote:
10 Jun 2021, 14:57


For a kibble the ingredients look OK :)

I wouldn’t worry about 12% fat as this is still not very high. I think you said that your schnauzer wasn’t ill / diagnosed with an issue due to elevated triglycerides but that the vet had just commented on the level and said it would be better to use a lower fat content food so it should fine for now.
Thanks, I'm totally unfamiliar with foods, I saw that some people recommended brit care as superior to RC but comparing the composition I don't know - RC has chicken which is supposedly not good for dogs and usually causes allergies, except that my dog probably doesn't have it since he ate so much and he was fine? Chicken itself has a better assimilability though.. On the other hand RC has rice which has a low glycemic index and Brit has potatoes so the more I read the more I don't know which food is better

Anyway, ordered Brit see how it goes. Thanks for your help :)
I just had a quick look at the ingredients of Royal Canin Gastro food and the Brit Care Senior Light:

RC Gastro:
“Rice, dehydrated poultry protein, wheat, barley, hydrolysed animal proteins, beet pulp, animal fats, minerals, yeasts products, fish oil, mono - and diglycerides of palmitic and stearic acids esterified with citric acid, psyllium husks and seeds, fructo-oligosaccharides (0.48%), hydrolysed yeast (source of manno-oligo-saccharides) (0.19%), marigold extract (source of lutein). Vitamin A: 16500 IU, Vitamin D3: 1000 IU, Iron (3b103): 45mg, Iodine (3b201, 3b202): 4.5mg, Copper (3b405, 3b406): 14mg, Manganese (3b502, 3b504): 58mg, Zinc (3b603, 3b605, 3b606): 135mg, Selenium (3b801, 3b811, 3b812): 0.08mg - Technological additives: Clinoptilolite of sedimentary origin: 5g - Preservatives - Antioxidants.”

And Brit Care Senior Light:

“salmon dried (32%), potatoes (32%), salmon protein (8%), dried apples, chicken fat (preserved with tocopherols), dried beet pulp, natural flavors, salmon oil (2%), brewer’s yeast, hydrolyzed crustacean shells (a source of glucosamine, 260 mg/kg), cartilage extract (a source of chondroitin, 160 mg/kg), mannanoligosaccharides (150 mg/kg), herbs and fruits (rosemary, cloves, citrus, curcuma, 150 mg/kg), fructooligosaccharides (100 mg/kg), yucca schidigera (100 mg/kg), inulin (90 mg/kg), milk thistle (75 mg/kg).“

and I think the reason that the Brit Care is regarded as superior is that it lists the percentage of the main ingredients which gives you an idea of how much of it is in the food. Some brands call their food ‘chicken’ or ‘fish’ and there is actually hardly any of the named protein in it. With the Brit Care you at least know there is 32% dried salmon and 32% potato etc. With the RC food the ingredients should be listed with the highest proportion first which is actually ‘rice’ and there is no indication of whether this is brown (which is best) or white and if there is 30% or 50% or more! It also lists ‘poultry’ and ‘animal’ as the description of the sources of protein and fat and additional fish oil none of these are specific to a particular bird / animal / fish so you don’t really know exactly what is in it. It also includes too much grain to my mind too - rice, wheat and barley which are not ideal for dogs. Potatoes are not wonderful either in large quantities but could be better tolerated than grains. Of the 2 products I would rate the Brit Care as better from that point of view :)
Good point, I've just heard that manufacturers state "meat" but don't specify what kind and most often it's some kind of meal/bone ground with the worst quality of meat unfortunately :(

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Re: Royal canin substitute/recommendations?

Post by Uberas »

Brit care senior light has arrived, first impressions - it smells and looks just as bad as orijen adult, in my opinion RC performs much better here, but we'll see. I attach photos of the food if anyone is interested

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