As a first time puppy owner it’s safe to say I spent countless hours doing my research about all the essential kit we needed, what injections and vet treatment he might need and also what food to give him. But when there are SO many different types of food out there and with other dog owners having such an opinion about what is and what isn’t the best food to give your dog, it can feel incredibly confusing let me tell you. Ultimately, I want a puppy food that my dog enjoys eating (I’ve got enough puppy stuff to be dealing with without trying to force feed him food!), but most importantly I want to be safe in the knowledge that what he is eating is nutritionally sounds and will aid healthy development. Of course I have a pet insurance with emergency fund coverage for puppies, but I wanted to minimize all the risks and feed him well and healthy.
When we bought him, the breeder gave us a bag of the puppy food she’d been feeding him with and advised us to continue to use that for a while, as changing food too quickly can upset a puppy’s delicate tummy. It was fine; he liked it, it agreed with his tummy, all was good.
Then we registered him at the local vet’s and signed up to their pet plan, which included a free bag of food each month. Great we thought, we’ve basically got a free bag of food, brill. Love a bit of money saving when we can. But no, it wasn’t as easy as that. Because guess what? He didn’t like the ‘free’ stuff did he. Typical!
So I’ll be honest, when I got sent a bag of Hills Science Plan Puppy Food I wasn’t entirely convinced we’d have much joy. Did I have a fussy puppy, who only liked what he knew and wasn’t willing to try new stuff? (Remember I am new to this dog lark!). But I needn’t have worried, because he blinkin’ loved it! In fact he loved it so much, he was badgering me for more. Honestly, it was a case of me turning my back for 2 minutes and he’d wolfed the lot. Now, before all you dog experts start, yes of course I introduced it gradually. I mixed it in with his existing food and gradually changed the ratios.
I can honestly say that I have never seen him so excited about food – well OK maybe for cheese and sausages, but hey dry food ain’t ever gonna be as tasty as those two things, right!?! Possibly it was because the pieces were slightly smaller than his usual food and so it was easier for him to eat, who knows. All I can say is that, do you remember that game Hungry Hippos? Well replace the white balls with the Hills Science Plan dry chicken pieces and switch out a hippo with Baxter my 14 week Cockapoo puppy and you’ve recreated the scene perfectly!
OK so that’s all well and good, he liked, sorry scrap that, he LOVED it. But what about the nutritional value? Is it any good for him?
Look, I’m no expert, but if a food comes ‘veterinarian recommended’ that’s gotta be a good thing for starts.
The packaging states that the food:
- Contains clinically proven antioxidants to support a healthy immune system.
- Supports healthy brain, eye and skeletal development.
- Contain high quality ingredients to help gentle and healthy digestion.
With mention of the ingredients, let’s take a look at them – maize, chicken and turkey meal, animal fat, digest, maize gluten meal, dried beet pulp, flaxseed, minerals, fish oil, brewer’s rice. Now I know that the addition of things like rice and maize in dog food can be a bit of a, if you’ll excuse the pun, bone of contention. There are basically two sides to this argument. On the one hand maize is a good quality, nutritious carbohydrate source. However, on the other hand it can sometimes be harder for dogs to digest and is therefore more likely to lead to food intolerance or allergies. The way I see it is that if you find a food that doesn’t upset your dog and that your dog is happy to eat and is continuing to grow at a good healthy rate, his fur is shiny, he has healthy eyes, teeth, joints etc. etc. then clearly you have found the right food for your dog. Just like humans, there are going to be some dogs that don’t get on with certain food types, you just have to make the best decision for your dog.
Baxter loved it and I’m happy he has a clean bowl every time and it hasn’t given him the squits! Well, you wanted an honest review 😉
*product gifted for review