I have long wondered what to feed Danny, and how much. We were buying Iams food at the grocery store because it seemed good enough and cheap enough without being dangerously cheap. But, with hiking season upon us, I thought Danny might need a little extra oomph from his breakfast. So I went to PetCo, only because they carry so many kinds of food in so many price ranges. And Danny likes to visit the store.
Danny and I asked a nice man in blue vest for some help picking a food. He asked what we were interested in and what Danny was already eating. I told him about the Iams, said I wanted to upgrade but didn’t want to pay a million dollars on specialty food for a dog as healthy and non-picky as Danny, but that he was very active and probably needed a more nutrient-dense food. The man was very helpful and showed me a few different brands, but we settled on Nutro Natural Choice High Energy food for its reasonable ingredient list and reasonable-ish price. I was paying about $20 a bag for Iams; this stuff is about $30 a bag. The PetCo guy also appraised Danny’s muscles and fitness. I was like, “Dude, you’re just petting my dog. You don’t have to justify it. He loves it.” Danny was happy because we were there the morning after delivery day, so there were pieces of food all over the place. It was like a sample bar.
We started feeding the Nutro High Energy food to Danny right away, and he liked it. (It would have been more shocking if he didn’t.) The pieces of kibble are small, so we thought he might inhale it or make a big, crumbly mess around his bowl. Neither happened, since the small pieces are also super crunchy, so he has to chew and chew. He still tears through the bowl of food, but not quite so fast. We give him a big cup in the morning before our long walk or hike and a big cup in the afternoon after our run. If we’ve done lots of extra stuff — a trip to the dog park, or a lot of zooming around the yard — he’ll get a 1/2 cup snack a couple hours before bedtime.
Here’s the thing: I don’t know if it’s the improving weather or the improved food, but Danny’s been really energetic lately. He’s got all the crazy fun energy he had when he was just past puppyhood with the obedience and confidence of the Danny we’ve come to know. Also, the food delivers on its promise of easy-to-clean-up poop, if you’re into that kind of thing. I’ll keep on this food for the foreseeable future.