What complete for French bulldog pup? Opinions/experiences please...

Hello all,

I would be most grateful for your personal opinions/experience to help me make an informed decision about choosing a dry complete food to feed my new 10 week old French Bulldog . I appreciate there will be many different views and suggestions e.g. why not BARF/Raw etc but I want to focus on complete foods only. The breeder recommended I feed my pup Royal Canin Junior but I was shocked with the review on this website considering I can get a better food at about the same price. I have concluded that I will continue with Royal Canin for the next few weeks to prevent stressing my pup/help him settle and slowly transition him to another complete food. I haven’t identified any issues so far with Royal Canin as I suppose that is all he has been used to but if I can provide him with a better food I certainly will.

Like so many it would appear, I assumed feeding a well packaged and reasonably expensive foods such as Royal Canin, Science Plan, Eukanuba and others meant I was providing my dog with a complete food that was good, one I could afford and more importantly a food recommended by breeders and vets.

It would be really helpful for your personal opinions on what complete foods I should consider along with your experiences choosing a complete food for your pup/dog. Once my pup reaches about 12 months old I will add tripe/beef mince to any complete I buy once a week as a treat.

Lastly I don’t want to pay anymore than about £60 pm for a complete food. The food directory is a great and a useful tool but I would like to add some personal opinions to the mix before I make a decision.

Many thanks in advance for any opinions/experiences shared.

I used the reviews on this site 18 months ago to research dog foods, and I can across Eden Holistic. I started my Rottie bitch on it and also joined their group on Facebook where I asked so many questions they must have been sick of seeing my name… well in fact that wasn’t the case and I was soon answering questions that others were asking and was eventually invited to be an admin on the group, where I now answer questions for many other people, in fact i now also sell the food on a part time basis to people in my local (some people travel 25-30 miles to collect, so that also tells you something of their opinion too I think)

But the important part, my Rottie and her brother, another rottie we got last year, are both in fantastic condition. people often compare the soft shiny coats and ask how as their dogs aren’t so shiny. They are both calm and relaxed too. their stools are small and firm, as they would be with raw, apart from when they occasionally scavenge something yukky on a walk. I would highly recommend the food to anyone, and would do so even without my obvious bias

Hello and welcome to the forum. Your question is a loaded one and often when you ask dog owners they will probably recommend the product that they feed to their Fido. However, if you ask them why they feed this product, nine times out of ten they won’t be able to tell you. That’s why it’s always best to learn something yourself about the principles (or what makes) a good dog food and, importantly to read the label on the packet. If it’s vague and you don’t understand it, put it back on the shelf.

I wouldn’t recommend any particular food because all dogs are different and what suits one may not suit another. However, if I was to have a puppy again I would try hard to raw feed it right from the off. My reasoning is not because it is ancestral diet but because it is unprocessed and more natural.

It might be worth checking out the higher rated foods both dry, wet and raw and reading reviews for those.

I tend to feed mostly raw complete with occasional kibble for a little bit of a change. I find the raw convenient as long as you have plenty of freezer space. Like Dottie, I like that there is less processing involved. I personally feel that the more a food is processed, the more potential for health issues to arise. For me raw also seems to keep my dog at a healthy weight. With some raw like Natures menu which I sometimes use, I have to give a bit more than the recommended amount however or the weight drops off her.

I agree with Dottie and Tinyplanets. I too feed raw not because of the ancestral diet but because of minimum processing. I also sometimes home cook and they get the occassional wet meal. I think minimum processing and variety is important. I don’t feed kibble and it does worry me the number of dogs who are put straight onto what is mostly a highly processed food from weaning. I came to this conclusion after a great deal of research and would encourage you to think again about dry food.

I have just re read your opening post and realised that you actually want a complete (dry) food so our comments about raw food are probably not appropriate to your particular situation.

With regards to processing there is another type of food which is made at lower temperatures than kibble; these are the cold pressed ones. There aren’t many but we have a thread on here about them and I think it covers the main ones. I was told the other day that Zooplus have an offer on Lukullus. It was a very good price for what is a quality product but best to check the expiry date because these don’t last as long as kibble. Also, they tend to be more dense than kibble so it looks like there is less in the bowl.

Remember that although quality dog food is more costly, in the end it could equal out because the dog often needs less in quantity.

It would probably be helpful to you to go to the Dog Food directory of this website and use the Filters section to narrow down the choice. There are so many great products these days but sometimes I look at ingredient lists that are as long as an arm and I just think that it is so unnecessary. That is just a personal view though and not a scientific one so maybe it is inaccurate. To me, simplicity is sometimes a good thing, especially with dogs that have a sensitive digestion.

The only other advice I can offer is to speak to the breeder and other Frenchie owners because they may have experience of food that has worked well or not so well on their dogs. For instance, my friend has a French Bulldog that has had a long period of ill health due to ear problems, paw licking and scratching. The dog is now on a raw diet and although not completely cured of the paw licking (it has probably become habit), she does seem to have improved. However, I don’t know if this is common to the breed.

Dottie, suggest to your friend to try removing chicken from the raw diet she feeds for a few weeks and see if that helps. A lot of chicken has antibiotics and growth hormones that can also cause this itchyness.

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Thank you all so much for your comments very much appreciated. I have found it quite difficult and a wee bit discombobulating to find an alternative food as all the breeders I spoke to before buying my pup fed Royal Canin. I was quite shocked to see such a popular and widely used dog food receive such poor ratings on this site.

After further research I think I will opt for Millie’s wolf or Arden mixed with a raw diet. I find it equally as surprising that the larger pet shops do not stock the better rated food from this site.

This site has opened my eyes to a lot when it comes to dog food. At the end of the day the majority of dog owners want to feed their dog the best dog food within their budget so it is sad that some companies are charging high prices for what would appear to be low quality food.

Thank you for that advice David - will pass it on.

Clay116 - I know what you mean about people who recommend Royal Canin and then you see the review on here and wonder about it. For the breeder there can be financial advantages because of free samples, breeder clubs etc. Many years ago I used to feed this to my dogs - I think it was Mini Mature. It’s such a long time ago that I cannot remember much about it but presumably if it had been terrible I would have remembered it. These kind of products reach into the pet owning public’s consciousness because they are heavily advertised and widely sold in pet stores so it is hardly surprising that they are popular.

Regarding mixing kibble with raw, there is a thread here about mixing kibble and raw food. Generally, the advice given is not to mix the two but as you can see by the thread, nobody seems to have come up with hard scientific evidence for or against it. However, IMHO I feel that it is best to stick with one or t’other so that the dog’s digestion and gut flora can settle down.

The Raw feeding Community did a trial, albeit with a single dog, and proved, using x-rays, that kibble passes through the system faster than raw, it’s not very scientific being only one dog, but its more than has been done to prove that kibble digests slower as many raw feeders have been told.


It makes sense for kibble to digest faster since it is already broken down, whereas meat and bone need time to be broken down in the stomach.

I know numerous Eden customers that feed Eden and raw together, even in the same bowl, and have no issues with it, but then Eden has no grain content, which is what is claimed to cause the problems.

My French Bulldog is now 2 and she is fed on Royal Canin Frenchie Food - NEVER any trouble - no tummy upset and always happy to eat it :slight_smile:

I have been making the transition from Royal Canin to Millies + small amounts of raw mince following the reviews on this website. The grain free option and lack of red ingredients is what convinced me.