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Golden Retriever Mama
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi all! I am new to the forum and thought I would share my experience with my puppy in case it might help someone else.

I have a 13 week old puppy named Duke. I did some research before bringing him home about the type of food that I wanted him on and settled on Wellness Core Puppy Formula because it had great reviews. He seemed to do well on it at first, but was never super enthusiastic about mealtimes which I thought was odd, but maybe a personality quirk.

After a couple of weeks on the food, I noticed he was constantly itchy and developing red bumps on his stomach. The vet dismissed the bumps on his tummy as "puppy acne" and said he was constantly itchy because he was growing so fast and his skin was stretching. I, not knowing any better, took him at his word. :confused:

After a while, I couldn't stand to see Duke constantly scratching himself. It was most concerning when I would take him out at night to relieve himself. He couldn't even make the walk from his crate to the back door without stopping multiple times to scratch himself. I eventually noticed he also started to develop really intense redness where his armpit would be if he were a human and even some broken skin. That was enough for me.

I read up on golden retriever allergies and didn't really find satisfactory answers except for trying a food that has different ingredients than the one that you suspect might be causing irritation. I did some research and settled on Annamaet Aqualuk. I ordered it from Amazon and when it came in, I mixed them for about two meals before I just put both in front of him to see which he would prefer the new one. He went right for the new food.

Gradually, the intense scratching subsided, but the tummy bumps remained. To be honest, I wasn't sold that the old food was the culprit, especially since my coworkers were giving me a hard time about suspecting that my "bird dog" is allergic to feathered animals. He happily ate the 5 lb bag of food that I bought and before I knew it, it was gone.

Lo and behold, no nearby stores carry Annamaet so it was back to the old food. Within two days, Duke was a lethargic, itchy mess all over again. He is absolutely miserable and cannot stop scratching and gnawing at his legs and paws. New bumps have appeared on his stomach and the irritation has returned to his armpits. I rush ordered some Annamaet Aqualuk that is arriving tomorrow and purchased some Earthborn Holistic Coastal Catch from the local pet store in the meantime.

Basically, the lesson learned is that no matter how high quality a food may be, if it doesn't work for your dog, it's as good as garbage. I bought a 26 lb bag of Wellness Core after he did well on the 4 lb bag, but it will be gifted or donated because I cannot subject my dog to these intense reactions from it anymore.

TL, DR: My puppy is horribly allergic to Wellness Core puppy food. I switched him to Annamaet Aqualuk with great results. The best thing to do if you suspect your dog has a food allergy is to buy a new food with completely different ingredients. Also, if the experiment is going well, make sure you have more on hand for when the first bag runs out.

 

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Super Moderator Leader
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Welcome to the forum.
Duke is adorable, great pictures.

I am glad you found a food that works for him.
Looking forward to seeing more pictures of him as he grows.
 

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We alternate now between Earthborn Grain Free, Wellness Core and Three Dog Bakery with no issues and no transition problems.

When we brought Sailor home, she was having reactions to Avoderm and my Brady I switched to Wellness Core after he was having issue with Canidae.

Every dog is different.

He is adorable.
 

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He is adorable - like you said: it doesn't matter how good the food is if your own dog has issues with it. You've got to find what works.
 
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