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Raw feeding and a Bichon with dog breath

Discussion in 'Dog Health and Nutrition' started by DirtyGertie, Mar 27, 2011.


  1. DirtyGertie

    DirtyGertie PetForums VIP

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    Another question from me :eek:

    Anyone following our venture into raw feeding may remember Poppy has been on Naturediet/Burns since we changed her over from first having her (breeder fed her on Eukanuba).

    Not having a Bichon before we were pleasantly surprised to discover that she's never had any doggie odour of any description, never any dog breath at all.

    She had her first raw feed yesterday (chicken drumstick for brekkie, chicken breast fillet for tea, all human grade) and this morning she does seem to have some dog breath odour. You can smell it from her mouth and she licked my arm and there was a smell left there afterwards. I'm surprised as I'd read that raw feeding can help with dog breath.

    The Bichon haircut leaves a fair amount of hair around her mouth but I've wiped around with a baby wipe after the chicken drumsticks so I don't think it's in the hair, particularly after the lick left the odour on my arm.

    It's not repulsive, it's just noticeable as she's never had it before. Any thoughts?

    Any other Bichon owners who feed raw? Have you noticed this?
     
  2. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    I'd suggest chicken wings are easier to deal with for a bichon, and about the right meat/bone percentage, both thighs and breast fillets are too much meat for a meal, particularly for a small breed, and it may be that that's contributing to the bad breath possibly? Chicken carcasses, necks and wings are by far the best to feed, rather than big meaty chunks. It's us humans that have bred chickens with bigger muscles on so we can make the most of it, and a more natural meat/bone ratio is found on the parts without huge muscles on them, if that makes sense? If you've ever had wild duck, the difference between that and the fatty big breast on a farmed duck, is vastly different, there's almost no fat and a very small breast muscle (but very tasty) on a wild duck.
     
  3. Mum2Heidi

    Mum2Heidi PetForums VIP

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    I've not fed raw but agree that it's the best.

    Was wondering if possibly it's a de-tox sign? After all the the purest and best way to feed so may be it will right itself?? Just a thought:D
     
  4. Souris

    Souris PetForums Senior

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    Sorry Sleeping Lion, but I'd actually completely disagree with this.

    A small dog needs the same ratio (the 80-10-5-5) as a large dog, and the fact is that chicken wings are really quite boney. If you're feeding wings all the time she'll be getting way too much bone, after all if you compare say a chicken wing to a chicken thigh whilst a thigh is around 20%-ish bone, a wing I'd say is nearing the 40-50%. Whilst a few wings with a large dog may amount to their ten percent with lumps of meat alongside, when you're dealing with 200g if you start giving her chicken wings (which are about what between 80-100g a piece- so about half of days food) on a fairly regular basis as her 'meaty' meals it's going to be way too bone.

    I've always fed wings very rarely to Pixel because they do contain so much bone, and Pixel isn't that much larger than a bichon (he's on 275g a day at the moment). If I do feed wings, I've also always made sure he gets meatier meals the following day to make up for the amount of bone.
     
  5. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    It depends very much on the type of diet you feed, after all, I don't personally think there is one *right* way to feed raw, if it works for your dog, then fine, but will have to agree to disagree about the meat/bone ratio for boney meals, bear in mind, mine also get green tripe and offal meals not just the meals with bone content ;)

    Both mine are fed carcasses and wings, never great amounts of muscle, I know some people feed minced beef which is something I never do, I just don't think it's necessary. I always worry with people switching over to raw that they choose to use a weight bearing bone such as a drumstick as the first meal, although not as dense and likely to splinter as a much larger animal, it is still a weight bearing bone and not as easy for a dog to deal with if it isn't used to biting down on the bones and breaking them into smaller pieces. I always tell people switching over to go for wings or the carcass, as they are just easier for a dog to deal with.

    In my experience, if you're feeding a good range of nutritious raw food, and any left overs you care to add in there, the dogs love it, and get what they need from it. I don't feed large amounts of muscley meat and don't include it in my barf guide, and my dogs seem to thrive, some people may feed large amounts of muscley meat, and their dogs also do well, who's right? Or are we both just feeding our dogs a good diet that's different??
     
  6. Souris

    Souris PetForums Senior

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    Sleeping Lion- First of, yes, there's many different types of way to feed raw. It's part of the beauty of the diet- if one thing doesn't 'work', there's plenty of ways to get around it. I have a friend whos dog won't tolerate lamb at all, but she still feeds him raw: just not lamb.

    Pixel doesn't get just meals with bone content either, he also gets tripe meals (although I don't feed whole offal meals, as I like to split that up over the course of a week), pure meat meals and then bone in meals too. He also gets carcasses and wings- but they tend to be once or twice in a two week rota as oppose to every day. I like to make sure he doesn't get anymore than 15% bone in a week as I personally feel if he had anymore bone it would be instead of much needed protein. But, then again I don't feed any vegetables and like to stick to to a pray style model.

    But with such a small amount a day with, I've always been told to be very careful with the ratios as it's much easier to slip up - an extra wing/carcass a week may not be that much to a dog who gets double but it will considerably increase the percentage of bone over that week for a dog who gets less. I know certainly if I fed Pixel more bone he'd be constipated, and I'd be worried about the calcium to phosphorous ratio as he's still growing.

    I'd agree with you on the drumstick though: Pixel started off bone wise on quarters, but I'd always hold it so he got the idea of how to crunch the bone properly. He had no issues with crunching the bone, but had I not have held it, he may have tried gulping a larger chunk of bone.

    We'll have to agree to disagree I think! There's loads of different ways to feed raw, and of course one 'method' of feeding raw may not even fit the dog: as long as our dogs are all thriving and doing well on a good diet.
     
  7. babycham2002

    babycham2002 PetForums VIP

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    My first thought also was that it is a detox sign :smile:
     
  8. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    Mine actually get their offal in what I refer to as a 'lucky dip', which is a mixture of cooked liver/kidney, appropriate left overs, and the knobbly bits and chicken livers from chicken carcasses that I buy from the butchers. I also add an egg or two in there, and possibly a tin of fish from time to time, and they love it.

    I base the diet for my two on Dr Billinghurst's dietary advice, although I don't follow it rigidly. So meaty bones form about 60% of the diet for my two, although I probably give a little less blended veggies, and have green tripe in there which I don't think he does. Although his suggestion is that the ratio of meat/bones/cartilege/fat etc is best found in the wings, neck and carcasses, advice which I've followed since my two were pups and it definitely suits them, I quote "The first thing you will need is a supply of raw meaty bones... These raw meaty bones will form the basis of the BARF diet. I strongly suggest you source some chicken or possibly turkey waste. Turkeys are probably more available for some people in the United States. The following remarks apply equally to chicken, turkey or even duck scraps. The waste will include wings, necks, backs - whatever. It will also include carcasses or frames. The frame is what is left when most of the flesh has been removed from one of these birds. It consists of bone, cartilage, fat and a little bit of flesh. The ratio of flesh to bone, cartilage and fat is ideal in wings, backs, necks and frames. Other scraps and waste need to be evaluated and used intelligently to achieve the required balance of these compenents, according to the needs of the animals you are feeding".

    My vet is always in raptures when my two go in for their annual boosters, which is pretty much the only time he gets to see them. They are two of the fittest and healthiest examples of Labradors registered with the surgery I have been told, and I even got asked to take them back in for one of the vets who specialises in Labradors, as she wasn't there last time. Funnily enough, you normally get the 'shock horror' face when you tell a vet your dogs are raw fed, but he's completely happy with my two being on a raw diet, which is a refreshing change!
     
  9. Malmum

    Malmum PetForums VIP

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    Tom Lonsdale in his book 'Work Wonders' says that wings are the best in proportion to meat and bone ratio too. Drumsticks contain too much meat and not much bone but I think I said in the other thread i'd go down the wing route. Mine also have carcasses regularly to up their bone intake. Mine have chicken bone in some form practically every day and i've never had any constipation issue or extra hard stools.
    You will find that once you get the hang of it everything will balance itself out, after all it's only the third day of Poppy having her new diet and she's doing really well. Can't remember ever giving mine chicken breast alone in any one meal, there's always bone of some kind in it. :)

    And don't I know about having to clean those doggy "beards" (sorry girls) I do it with baby wipes soaked in warm water and if they've had bloody bones it's "face under the shower" for these two!
     
    #9 Malmum, Mar 27, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2011
  10. Souris

    Souris PetForums Senior

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    On the topic of wings, let me explain fully why I don't feed them very often. I know there's plenty of different ways to feed raw, and I'm not sure of the ratios of BARF, but for anyone wanting to stick to the pray model style ratios here's why I wouldn't advise feeding too many wings:

    Lets say that I have dog A, who's 10kg and I feed him 2% of his adult weight a day, so 200g. Lets also say for this example that I feed him primarily chicken in general for his boney meals as it makes the example a bit easier, of course this wouldn't happen in real life (you'd go for more variety), but please bear with me!

    So, if I feed him the pray type model he wants roughly around 10-15% bone over the space of a week, as in the pray style we go off what a whole carcass would look like (the ratio that I go off is 75/15/5/5 - meat, bone, liver, another secreting organ), so he wants somewhere between 140g and 200g a week of bone roughly (working off feeding him roughly 1400g a week in total) which is his 10%-15%. Now, I've also split his dinners into two per day, so fourteen over the space of a week.

    Now, lets look at a wing. Lets say this chicken wing is 100g, and a chicken wing is made up of between 40-50% bone to be on the conservative side. So, your average 100g wing is made up of around 40-50g of bone. Now, lets say I fed him a wing for four of his meals - that's 160-200g of bone there. That's essentially his weekly budget of bone spent on four meals! Compare that to a drumstick which is around 15-25% bone- so assume again that we have 100g drumstick then that's only 15-25g of bone, and once again with a thigh (around 5-10% bone) so you're looking at 5-10g of bone per portion. If we had a carcass it'd be even more as you're looking at about 80-90% bone on a carcass- so 80-90g per portion there.

    So, whilst wings/carcasses are good, don't get me wrong I'm not saying they're bad, I would just not by any means feed them very often. I'd rather feed a variety of cuts, so a few drumsticks, a thigh here or there and then perhaps one carcass and one maybe two wings a week. You can then easily split the bone content then over a week as oppose to just having massively boney meals a few times a week with meat-only meals making up the rest of the time.

    I hope that helps anyone confused. :)
     
    #10 Souris, Mar 27, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2011
  11. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    Yes, but that depends entirely on what constitutes prey, if it's a fat chicken that's been bred to have as much muscle as possible because that's what us humans want, then that fits, but if it's a rabbit, or hare, or a wild game bird, there is much less muscle meat, so the bone ratio is higher.

    The same can be said for most domesticated *prey* animals, cows, sheep etc, have all been bred to have more muscle mass for us humans, but is that right for our dogs? I think that's possibly where our view re raw feeding differs. :)
     
  12. Souris

    Souris PetForums Senior

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    How about something larger like a deer? The meat to edible bone ratio would be higher there, and then what about birds? Birds are deceptively meaty, after all, their bones are lightweight so if you compared the weights their bone ratio (in comparison to meat and organs) would be lower: maybe not the 75/15/10, but I don't think it'd be more than 35% bone. I suppose it depends on what we constitutes as 'pray'- I'd like to think it would be anything from a deer to birds and smaller animals.

    Is there a website anywhere that shows the ratios of bone/meat/offal in pray animals?

    However, I wanted to say thank you for really making me look again and question the ratio. I know I'd read on the raw myths website that a rabbit has 8% bone (which I'm questioning as having fed Pixel rabbit recently I'd have put it higher than that). I'm going to do a bit more research into it and then possibly pop Pixel up to 20-25% bone if he's ok with that, I personally feel any more than that would be too much bone but after my looking around I'm starting to think 10% is a weenie bit too little. :)
     
  13. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    I'm not sure there is a reliable website that could give that sort of information to be honest, because of the differences between not just domesticated and wild types, but different domesticated types.

    Re venison and that sort of meat, I don't feed that sort of meat, as I don't think it's a natural prey source for a dog necessarily. For the majority of domesticated dogs, I think the sort of prey they could utilise are small birds, animals and rodents, and the young of larger animals. I don't think the vast majority of domesticated dogs could take down any larger prey, so basing the diet on a prey model, I'd use that sort of profile of prey species to base a diet on.

    My OH works his dogs and shoots, so I get the pleasure of dealing with game birds throughout the shooting season, and as a seasoned plucker and drawer, of birds from woodcock, which need little preparation, to geese! I can assure you very much, that the muscle mass of wild birds is much less than anything farmed, less than 50% every time I'd guesstimate. And yet the flavour is fabulous, much better than anything farmed.
     
  14. Souris

    Souris PetForums Senior

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    Hobbs has a link on the cat raw page that showed the nutritional content of carcasses fed to zoo animals, but it doesn't seem to work anymore- which is a shame as that would have been a fascinating read! To quote the cat raw page again apparently a mouse is roughly on the pray style model ratio, and whilst I do agree that cats and dogs are different- I could easily see small dogs eating mice plus rats.

    I'm personally happy to feed them all sorts of meats, the more variety the better as far as I'm concerned. I know it's not 'natural' technically, but I do strongly believe that variety one of the keys to a raw diet.

    For me, a pray style model is based upon wolves/dingos/African wild dogs etc etc, and they would come across larger pray at some point: whether they'd taken it down themselves or if the animal itself had deceased. I remember watching a program a few weeks ago about how an elephant's corpse was split up, and a set of hyenas (I know hyenas are technically in the cat family, but the pray style raw dogs and cats diets are extremely similar) kept visiting the corpse over the space of a week. From what I remember they ate the meat/organs before then going onto the bone, and they certainly had far more meat than they had bone: in fact I'd say they barely touched the bone in comparison to the meat. It was the same with the other large predators that came to the carcass, they would take some of the bone but the majority of their meal was meaty.
     
  15. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    African wild dogs typically prey on animals up to impala size (much lighter than our red deer), anything above that is risking injury so out of their range. They will make use of any opportunistic carcasses they come across of course, but the specialists in that are spotted hyenas whose dentition allows them to make the most of any carcass, large or small.

    Having watched both in the wild, I'd say they have definite prey parameters, wild dogs prey on smaller lighter species, and are incredibly successful. Hyenas can and do bring down much larger prey, and lions quite often take advantage of their success, hyenas aren't always the scavengers they are made out to be.

    Edited to add, hyenas are not part of the cat family as I understand it, they are a separate species, and incredibly fascinating. The behaviour patterns of spotted hyena females are unique, I can point you towards a very good documentary if you're interested?
     
  16. Souris

    Souris PetForums Senior

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    Oh, are they not? I'd always understood that they were. And yes, I'd love to watch that documentary if you have a link/name of it!

    Having a look around the internet, I found this link which shows the amount of bone in a carcass. In a pigeon, although it doesn't seem to be a wild pigeon, it says there's 23% bone, whilst a pheasant is 14%- although once again it doesn't seem to say if it's wild or not. I looked up rabbit but I couldn't seem to find the figure.

    In conclusion though, I have to say, I'm very confused at the moment in regards to ratios. Pixel looks fantastic and is thriving on the current 15% bone, and obviously there are many, many more dogs thriving on this ratio as well. It seems to be wildly acknowledged on the pray model that 10-15% bone is the 'figure', and I'm not sure I'd be happy feeding him above the 20-25% bone mark. I guess it boils down to what works for the dog again, but, the 15% obviously works as a ball park figure. The website above is quoted by quite a few people online who are asked about the whole pray question, and it certainly seems reputable. :confused:
     
  17. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    But then that goes back to what we agreed to disagree on earlier, as long as you feed a good range of raw food, your dogs will find it a good enough nutritional range from which to derive what they need to develop and survive.

    I'll see if my video is available online, it is fabulous non-sentimentalist documentary evidence from Botswana, where I used to live. And,I've been privileged enough to see both African Wild Dogs as well as lions and hyenas.
     
  18. Souris

    Souris PetForums Senior

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    Aye! I don't think we're going to come to a conclusion, but what I can hope is that anyone who comes to read this thread in regards to raw will be able to take something from this. :) It's been brill debating it anyway!

    Wow, I'd love to go out to Africa and see the wildlife there. I'm hoping to go within the next few years to do some form of voluntary work out there: hopefully I'll get to see some equally amazing wildlife myself.
     
  19. Marley boy

    Marley boy PetForums VIP

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    do you all have to have a separate freezer for all your dogs raw food. I look in my current freezer and i couldn't get a feather in there lol :)
     
  20. Souris

    Souris PetForums Senior

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    Yup, I do!

    Pixel has a small tabletop counter one, it isn't the biggest freezer in the world but it can hold quite a bit more than you'd think. It has Pixel's name spelled out on the front in alphabetical magnets, yes, I'm slightly sad. :eek:
     
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