Not all pet food are created equally.  This is a tool I found on a forum that can be used to evaluate the foods we feed to our pets.  It has been proven that a good diet can prevent many health problems as diet effects all the organs of the body!  The better the diet, the better the health of your pet.  I would even dare say that with a better diet, your dogs ability to fight off other problems is increased by having a that extra advantage of health. I heard a vet say that diet is more important than vaccinations.  Your pet can fight off more ailments with good health than the vaccinations do...  not that you shouldn't vaccinate as well, but makes a good point.

This gives you an idea of what to look for when picking your dogs diet.  Have the list of ingredients available for the dog food you want to check out....

Start with a grade of 100:
1) For every listing of "by-product", subtract 10 points
2) For every non-specific animal source ("meat" or "poultry", meat, meal or fat) reference, subtract 10 points
3) If the food contains BHA, BHT, or ethoxyquin, subtract 10 points
4) For every grain "mill run" or non-specific grain source,subtract 5 points
5) If the same grain ingredient is used 2 or more times in the first five ingredients (i.e. "ground brown rice", "brewer's rice", "rice flour" are all the same grain), subtract 5 points
6) If the protein sources are not meat meal and there are less than 2 meats in the top 3 ingredients, subtract 3 points
7) If it contains any artificial colorants, subtract 3 points
8 ) If it contains ground corn or whole grain corn, subtract 3 points
9) If corn is listed in the top 5 ingredients, subtract 2 more points
10) If the food contains any animal fat other than fish oil, subtract 2 points
11) If lamb is the only animal protein source (unless your dog is allergic to other protein sources) subtract 2 points
12) If it contains soy or soybeans, subtract 2 points
13) If it contains wheat (unless you know that your dog isn't allergic to wheat), subtract 2 points
14) If it contains beef (unless you know that your dog isn't allergic to beef), subtract 1 point
15) If it contains salt, subtract 1 point

Extra Credit:
1) If any of the meat sources are organic, add 5 points
2) If the food is endorsed by any major breed group or nutritionist, add 5 points
3) If the food is baked not extruded, add 5 points
4) If the food contains probiotics, add 3 points
5) If the food contains fruit, add 3 points
6) If the food contains vegetables (NOT corn or other grains), add 3 points
7) If the animal sources are hormone-free and antibiotic-free, add 2 points
8 ) If the food contains barley, add 2 points
9) If the food contains flax seed oil (not just the seeds), add 2 points
10) If the food contains oats or oatmeal, add 1 point
11) If the food contains sunflower oil, add 1 point
12) For every different specific animal protein source (other than the first one; count "chicken" and "chicken meal" as only one protein source but "chicken" and "" as 2 different sources), add 1 point
13) If it contains glucosamine and chondroitin, add 1 point
14) If the vegetables have been tested for pesticides and are pesticide-free add 1 point

94-100+ = A     86-93 = B    78-85 = C    70-77 = D    69 = F

Here are some foods that have already been scored:Alpo Prime Cuts / Score 81 C

Artemis Large/Medium Breed Puppy / Score 114 A+
Authority Harvest Baked / Score 116 A+
Authority Harvest Baked Less Active / Score 93 B
Beowulf Back to Basics / Score 101 A+
Bil-Jac Select / Score 68 F
Blackwood 3000 Lamb and Rice / Score 83 C
Blue Buffalo Chicken and Rice / Score 106 A+
Burns Chicken and Brown Rice / Score 107 A+
Canidae / Score 112 A+
Chicken Soup Senior / Score 115 A+
Diamond Maintenance / Score 64 F
Diamond Lamb Meal & Rice / Score 92 B
Diamond Large Breed 60+ Formula / Score 99 A
Diamond Performance / Score 85 C
Dick Van Patten's Natural Balance Ultra Premium / Score 122 A+
Dick Van Patten's Natural Balance Venison and Brown Rice / Score 106 A+
Dick Van Patten's Duck and Potato / Score 106 A+
EaglePack Holistic / Score 102 A+
Eukanuba Adult / Score 81 C
Eukanuba Puppy / Score 79 C
Flint River Senior / Score 101 A+
Foundations / Score 106 A+
Hund-n-Flocken Adult Dog (lamb) by Solid Gold / Score 93 B
Iams Lamb Meal & Rice Formula Premium / Score 73 D
Innova Dog / Score 114 A+
Innova Evo / Score 114 A+
Innova Large Breed Puppy / Score 122 A+
Kirkland Signature Chicken, Rice, and Vegetables / Score 110 A+
Member's Mark Chicken and Rice / Score 84 C
Merrick Wilderness Blend / Score 127 A+
Nature's Recipe / Score 100 A
Nature's Recipe Healthy Skin Venison and Rice / Score 116 A+
Nature's Variety Raw Instinct / Score 122 A+
Nutra Nuggets Super Premium Lamb Meal and Rice / Score 81 C
Nutrience Junior Medium Breed Puppy / Score 101 A+
Nutrisource Lamb and Rice / Score 87 B
Nutro Max Adult / Score 93 B
Nutro Natural Choice Lamb and Rice / Score 98 A
Nutro Natural Choice Large Breed Puppy / Score 87 B
Nutro Natural Choice Puppy Wheat Free / Score 86 B
Nutro Natural Choice Senior / Score 95 A
Nutro Ultra Adult / Score 104 A+
Pet Gold Adult with Lamb & Rice / Score 23 F
Premium Edge Chicken, Rice and Vegetables Adult Dry / Score 109 A+
Pro Nature Puppy / Score 80 C
Pro Plan Sensitive Stomach / Score 94 A
Purina Benful / Score 17 F
Purina Dog / Score 62 F
Purina Come-n-Get It / Score 16 F
Purina One Large Breed Puppy / Score 62 F
Royal Canin Boxer / Score 103 A+
Royal Canin Bulldog / Score 100 A+
Royal Canin Natural Blend Adult / Score 106 A+
Science Diet Advanced Protein Senior 7+ / Score 63 F
Science Diet for Large Breed Puppies / Score 69 F
Sensible Choice Chicken and Rice / Score 97 A
Solid Gold / Score 99 A
Summit / Score 99 A
Timberwolf Organics Wild & Natural Dry / Score 120 A+
Wellness Super5 Mix Chicken / Score 110 A+
Wolfking Adult Dog (bison) by Solid Gold / Score 97 A

There are lots of sites that do analysis of dogs foods, don't just take the word of ONE, use a checks and balance system to make sure you are getting a clear picture!! Here are a few other sites to check out!

Raw Diet is another EXCEPTIONAL choice!! 

Dogs and cats evolved eating a natural diet consisting mainly of fresh protein sources. That is a fact. Through marketing, the pet food companies have convinced us that the only way our pets can stay healthy is by feeding them the “balanced diet” that they themselves manufacture - dividing our pets diets into "dry" food and "wet" food.

We need to push for the acceptance of preparing meals at home for our pets (just as we do for ourselves), and for the veterinarians not to automatically dosmiss it when the subject comes up, rather to help us get it right.

Dogs and cats do not require any grain at all in their diet. When it is added, the results over time are predictable - poor digestion, bowel trouble, gas, bad breath, itching and scratching, hot spots and more. Remember that feeding and nourishing are not necessarily the same thing.

Of course, many of us don't have the time to prepare our own meals, let alone meals for our pets! Still, it is definitely worth reading the following information to better understand how we can improve our pet's lives with proper nutrition. Any dog or cat can be much, much healthier by eating a simple, prepared-at-home diet along with the right supplements.Even making some small adjustments and adding good supplements can make a world of difference!

roastA 50 will eat approximately one pound of raw (or cooked) food per day, so adjust accordingly. For example a 10 lb. cat would eat 1/5 of a pound (3.2 oz.) daily and a 150 lb. dog would need 3 pounds.

Along with the following recipe ideas, both cats and dogs can (and should) be given raw bones (chicken or turkey necks, wings and backs). Bones must be given raw, cooked bones should NEVER be fed, since when cooked they become brittle and can splinter.

The following will yield approximately 1 cup of food (1/2 lb.)

75% - 6 ounces (3/4 cup) coarse-ground or chopped meat, raw or cooked. A variety of meats, poultry and fish (organic is better) should be rotated: Beef, Chicken, Lamb, Turkey, Rabbit, Venison and their organ meats. Salmon (no skin) Sardines, Smelt and other whole fish. Ground meat mixes better with the vegetables. Chopped meat is also excellent.

25% - 2 ounces (1/4 cup) ground, mixed vegetables, raw or cooked. Any and all of the following vegetables can be used. The more veggies you combine in one meal the better. Feed what’s in season. Asparagus, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Chicory, Green Beans, Greens (Dandelion, Kale, Swiss Chard, Parsley), Kohlrabi, Okra, Parsnips, Peas, Pumpkin, Sprouts, Squash, Sweet Potatoes, Yams, Turnips, Rutabagas.Optional Ingredients: Whole eggs (including shell) Alfalfa, Kelp, Garlic, Chlorella, Spirulina, Apples, Pears, Bananas, Parsley, Nettles, Walnuts, Almonds. Add purified water (especially if you are going to freeze).cauliflower

A good vitamin/mineral supplement, digestive enzymes and a little bit of fish oil (omega 3's) on a daily basis will complete the ideal diet! Here are some age-specific suggestions: It is best to add the supplements just prior to feeding.  Avoid Grains and Wheat products.  

This is just to give you an idea.  If you choose to feed your dog a raw or BARF (Biologically Appropriate Raw Food OR Bones And Raw Food) diet, do your homework to find out the best method to do this!  :)  You and your pet will enjoy the difference!