Nutrition and Health

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We are often asked, “What should I feed my puppy? What do you recommend?” Until 2017, We had been feeding Diamond Naturals Dog Food as it met our criteria based on the first few ingredients but then we were introduced to Life’s Abundance Dog Food. We were so impressed by the quality of this dog food for all of the ingredients in it and for it NOT including any ingredient which does not add any nutritional benefit or which actually proved harmful.  The testimonials from customers and field representatives of this company also influenced our decision to switch to Life’s Abundance Nutritional System and Agility Formula. Our mission at Bear Pond Retrievers is to improve the quality of the English Cream Golden Retriever and Labrador Retriever Breeds and offer our customers beautiful, healthy, intelligent and loving puppies that they can enjoy for years to come.

This line of pet products was formulated by Dr. Jane Bicks, DVM. She has been a holistic vet for over 20 years. She has served as President of the American Veterinarian Association of New York City, earned three Presidential Citations, appointed by Mayor Rudolph Guliano to help establish one of the largest animal shelters in the world, the author of three books on responsible care and treatment of pets, and has appeared on 48 Hours, Good Morning America, CNN, Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, and more. She has also created a non-profit foundation where a percent of her product line is contributed toward rescue and care for pets.

Needless to say, we were impressed. We learned that pet food was developed around World War II. It consisted of left-over grains that were rejected for human consumption. It was recognized very quickly that grains alone were not providing adequate nutrition, so protein was added, again with the source being rejected meat for human consumption; dead, diseased, dying, disabled, or drugged animals met the criteria.

Did you know that our pets genetically can live to be 20 years old, but the current average is 13-15? While many factors help the longevity of life – environment, health care, etc. nutrition is one of the most important factors.

Many of the ingredients in our pet food today causes a shorter life span due to the ingredients that cause stress on their kidney and liver functions which include; wheat, corn, and soy. These are also major allergens to our pets.

By-products such as chicken heads, duck bills, fish heads, chicken and turkey feet, bones and diseased & contaminated slaughterhouse meat can also be included in our pet foods! BHA, BHT, which harms our dog’s liver and kidneys and are known carcinogens. As well as Ethoxyquin, which is used to stabilize rubber can also be used. All these chemicals are added to provide a longer shelf life, for months, even possibly a couple of years.

We are now feedings our dogs and puppies Life’s Abundance Nutritional System and Agility Formula  to help ensure a long and healthy life, as well as provide our puppies a healthy start.

Bear Pond Retrievers believes SO strongly in Life’s Abundance Dog Food & Supplements, that we offer a Free Replacement Puppy on all of our  Retriever Puppies that are kept on Life’s Abundance Nutritional System & Agility Formula if they don’t reach their life expectancy of 10 years (life expectancy for Golden Retrievers 10-12 years) due to any genetic issue. We also offer an extended two year warranty for simply feeding LA's food.  Full details in new puppy contract.  Click here for more details about the product and to place an order.

While this dog food “seems” more expensive up front, the cost is about $1.88/lb if you buy the 40lb bag, which should last approximately two months per dog.  It is about the same price as many "top" reputation store brands and lower in price than so many, but is much higher in nutritional value and has NEVER had a recall, unlike the pet store brands. We especially love the company's culture and history.  The food is highly digestible and efficient, ensuring a long and healthy life for your pet.  Your family member is worth it, right?

Recommendation Transition Guide:

Day 1-2: Feed ¼ Life’s Abundance and ¾ of the old diet.
Day 3-4: Feed ½ Life’s Abundance and ½ of the old diet.
Day 5-6: Feed ¾ Life’s Abundance and ¼ of the old diet.
Day 7: The transition period is over and you can feed the recommended amount of Life’s Abundance.

If you have any questions about feeding or transitioning to Life’s Abundance Dog Food, please contact us.

Vaccines are important to protect your beloved new family member from contracting Parvovirus and Distemper.  Puppy shots prevent that and also include Bordatella.  We send each puppy off with their first shots, which may or not be effective due to the mom's antibodies still affecting his/her immune system.  However, one booster done after 16 weeks is proven to be very effective for 4-11 years, based on research.  The goal is to protect your pet, while minimizing any damage (side effects).  More is certainly not better.  Once he/she has that booster, he could be protected for life.  To be sure, simply run a Titer test for antibodies in a year and then again 2-3 years later.  Healthy dogs probably will never need any more boosters.   Rabies is due at six months.  Do not give earlier than five months and if your puppy is small for his age, wait even longer.   It's the most reactive of vaccines and if given early can be dangerous.  As for boosters, you can use Titers to prove protection or use State Laws to determine the next shot (less preferred).   Research does support that Rabies vaccine is effective for many years.  Click link on left box for one professional article that sums up several research studies.

The decision to spay or neuter and when to do it should be made based on your pet's circumstances and scientific research.  The link to the left is a scientific journal's article on this very subject.  What we know for sure is this:  Waiting until the dog reaches maturity (18-24 months) decreases the risk of many cancers and reduces the risk of hip and elbow displasia.  If you click on the link to the left, you will find the article-scroll down to the chart for a quick read on pros and cons.  We recommend waiting to spay or neuter until at least 18 months.  We do not require neutering as part of the contract.