Thank you both for your replies!
Darn squirrels! We live in a pretty dense city, but even in the parks/wooded areas there don't seem to be any oaks or other plant/tree goodies he could get a hold of.
And I agree, not overly impressed with Royal Canin ingredient list and a bit suspicious of the vet $ motives.
The diarrhea has since resolved (for now), and the only pattern I can identify is when we are out of town (once) or going to my parents house with him (they live 30 min away with a great backyard - a luxury we don't have). My guess is the back and forth and new experiences, though to some degree these visits are becoming routine and it hasn't happened every time.
I guess I was more concerned about the strained nature of his regular stool and whether the food was responsible for that, but everything seems to suggest that's just how he digests. He does get plenty of fiber (regular pumpkin and he is also a fan of veggie scraps, always under my feet when the cutting board is out).
I will keep an eye out for if he gets picky at any point. For now I think I'll stick with TotW which he seems to really enjoy, and I've added the probiotic the vet gave me.
My 3 year old basenji, Tom, is currently eating Taste of the Wild High Prairie, to which we add a bit of canned pumpkin.
We adopted Tom about 9 months ago. Prior to us he had 2 homes, the last of which was feeding him Purina Beneful & claimed he was a picky eater. I switched him to TotW which he immediately loved (tried to do the process of switching slowly but he picked out the Beneful kibbles and only ate TotW!).
Health wise is doing very well (coat, energy, etc), except for two digestive issues: when he passes stool normally he is very strained and seems to have difficulty, the stool isn't hard, but he strains and strains and takes a long time ? it just seems to be his process as we've never seen anything different? With the exception of: he gets diarrhea quite frequently. It usually only lasts a day or so, but in the past few months it's occurred every 2-3 weeks.
To some degree, it seems to align with our absence or any other disruption to routine (a friend took care of him while we were out of town for 3 days: diarrhea as soon as we got back; we moved apartments: increase in frequency, etc), though not always ? sometimes there's no discernible cause.
I was at the Vet today for shots, but I mentioned that he was having tummy issues so they held off and she prescribed a probiotic and antimicrobial, and then said while TotW is good, it's probably too rich and I should really consider switching and told me I should have him on Royal Canin Gastro.
But tbqh, it's more than double the price of TotW and that seems steep when I'm not 100% sold that his stool issues are stemming from food. I grew up with a basenji who also had a very sensitive stomach that reacted to stress or excitement. And Tom is the first basenji she's treated so I'm not sure she's familiar with many of their peculiarities.
Wondering if you all have had any similar experiences, either with tummy troubles, Taste of the Wild, etc. I welcome any suggestions you can give me! Thank you for reading!