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Raw Feeding: everything you need to know!

Discussion in 'Dog Health and Nutrition' started by katiefranke, Jul 11, 2010.


  1. ploddingon

    ploddingon PetForums Senior

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    katie, do you think it is ok to feed a mix of raw/commercial?

    Bobs just loves a 50/50 mix of PrizeChoice meats and NaturesMenu tinned dog food. After months of trying to get him settled on a dog food, and having to encourage him to eat, he really tucks into this and even whines while waiting for me to prepare it!

    Do you think it is ok to have this mix or would it be better to try and get him to alternate between the two?

    I just want to make sure he is getting the right levels of nutrition so would appreciate your comments.
     
  2. katiefranke

    katiefranke PetForums VIP

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    Do you mean as in mixed up together? People do, but personally I wouldn't.

    The problem is that commercial food takes anywhere from 12-24 hours to digest and come out the other end! (usually 12-16)

    But raw is something like 4-6 hours...

    A dogs digestive system is designed so that it is pretty short, so that it can break down the food, take the bits it needs and then expel the waste in a short period of time. That way, meat does not 'ferment' inside them and increase bacteria.

    However, if you feed commercial alongside, it can hold up the raw food in the intestines for longer than it should be there. Of course then you are left with the food fermenting in the intestines and increasing bacteria - upsetting the balance of the natural levels in the gut. This COULD lead to digestive issues, or bacteria or yeast overgrowth.

    Now as I said, many people do feed this way and say they have no problems - I dont know whether this is because their dogs adapt to it and are ok? or whether they just havent noticed the signs...

    But its the reasons above that would mean I don't really ever recommend to people feeding half and half if there is a choice - and also why I would definitely feed in two separate meals at the very least... I am sure a short time of this would not hurt, but over a long period of time I would personally be worried about it...

    Hope that all makes sense!
     
  3. ploddingon

    ploddingon PetForums Senior

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    Perfect sense thanks katie, but I hope you dont mind me picking your brains yet again (sorry).

    I could understand the difference in transit for some of the commercial wet foods that contain a lot of cereals or fillers, or with kibble, but is the difference the same with food like NaturesMenu?

    The ingredients for the chicken one for example is :-

    Chicken min. 61%.
    Peas min. 4%.
    Carrots min. 4%.
    Rice min. 6%.
    Minerals.
    Various sugars.


    Don't suppose it matters all that much to be honest, I will try and adjust his diet slowly so he doesn't notice, but would just be interested to know the process. :)
     
    #103 ploddingon, Aug 27, 2010
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2010
  4. katiefranke

    katiefranke PetForums VIP

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    I only have the info for a generic average - so would need to see if wet vs dry were any different...I will look about and see if I can find an answer for you.

    I would imagine anything with rice in would slow it down though...

    ...the 'various sugars' doesnt sound good... :S

    Will come back to you!
     
    Pointermum likes this.
  5. ploddingon

    ploddingon PetForums Senior

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    Oh katie, don't worry, honestly, I was only picking your brains, it's not important. Please don't spend any time looking for info.

    I see you as the resident expert in all things foody lol, but I am sorry to be a nuisance over it.
     
  6. SlingDash

    SlingDash PetForums Senior

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    Despite sleepless nights, panic attacks whilst feeding our pack raw chicken and turkey carcasses, a resolution never to feed raw meaty bones again, and our considering moving back to a 'high quality' (*ahem*) kibble...

    We're still at it!!!

    Mainly thanks to Katie's amazingly helpful advice and support, we are determined to feed what is best to our beloved pack. We have been feeding large chicken portions to our Collie, and the two Labs have been enjoying huge whole turkey legs from Tesco (less than £2 each, and enough for a whole day's feeding). They are also now used to (and loving) raw liver, kidneys and other offal products - things they only used to eat semi-cooked or minced-up in the food processor.

    Last time we posted, we were worried about large bone shards in the dogs' poohs, but these have not appeared again since, so we're hoping they are now used to the raw diet, and we can all settle down and relax at long last!

    One thing we did when we began raw feeding (and something which I think needs to be addressed here), was to confuse the BARF diet with the Raw, Meaty Bones diet. They really are very different.

    The BARF diet includes lots of fresh fruit and vegetables (something which, arguably, dogs do not need AT ALL), and the Raw, Meaty Bones diet - which is purely the feeding of an as-close-to-nature-as-possible (i.e. whole, fresh carcasses) diet to your dog(s).
     
  7. Blobbet

    Blobbet PetForums Member

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    Glad to hear you stuck to it and its going well now :thumbup:
    Still waiting to start mine on it yet! (had pay delay :() would of started about 2-3 weeks ago otherwise :eek:
     
  8. Pointermum

    Pointermum PetForums VIP

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    Wow, i've just read the whole thread, well done Katie :thumbup: Makes very interesting reading, a lot to think about. I'm would love to give my dogs this diet, i think i would need to look at getting a freezer in the garage as there is no room in the family freezer :lol: The other thing is i'm a veggie and have been for over 20 years so don't really know my way round meat :confused1: I'm not TO squeamish though so should be OK :rolleyes:
     
  9. Blobbet

    Blobbet PetForums Member

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    I've been veggie for about 8 years and turned vegan 8 months ago too :p
    is going to be a bit weird handling all the meat and carcasses lol but im also not all that squeamish :) at least i think not...never really handled raw meats in my life! although i suppose if you can handle the nasty stuff that comes out of dog food tins you can handle anything:D
     
  10. oveione

    oveione PetForums VIP

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    Hi would just like to say started my girl on the raw diet on tuesday and she is loving it after a month of her not eating hardly any dry food or canned the change is amazing she now sits and waits eyes wide while i sort her chicken portions out and she has more energy and just loves cruncing on bones im so glad ive changed her diet as i have a much happier more satisfied dog and all the info on here from katie has been a great help so thanks katie!:thumbup:
     
  11. chelleANDlottie

    chelleANDlottie PetForums Junior

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    pleased to report we had a whole weekend of raw feeding, saturday turkey chunks with some veg, all turkey eaten but left the veg!
    sunday whole fish- only ate about half and buried the rest!
    normmally i would have given a little kibble mixed in but after reading here i didnt.
    we did have a big explosion form the rear end early on sunday morning!! would that be her body just getting rid of left over kibble?, she was also fed quiet late on saturday,
    she is happy and active.
    chelle
     
  12. katiefranke

    katiefranke PetForums VIP

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    Thanks everyone, sorry for the delay in replying, ive been offline for a few days - I'm so glad you all found this helpful and want to feed your doggies this way :D

    Ask away if anyone has any other questions and Im more than happy to answer :)

    slingdash - you're nuts ;), but Im very pleased to hear you stuck with it!! :thumbup:

    to anyone who is vegetarian or vegan, firstly, good on you for considering this way of feeding for your pets :thumbup:

    The most imporant things for you guys I guess is to ensure you have a separate fridge drawer and freezer for your pet stuff so that it doesnt come near your food and start building relationships with your local butchers/farm shops etc, as then they can do the butchering for you! :)

    Whilst I did start off with just a drawer in my fridge and freezer dedicated to the pets' food, I only did it for a couple of months and it was a pain - and I didnt have to worry about the foods mixing as I buy everything from butchers etc for human consumption, and Im not vegetarian or anything! So the sooner you can get a separate freezer the better.

    have you fed raw fish much before - i know you mentioned previously that she loved fish - canned or fresh, but perhaps half a fish was a bit much? ...maggie was quite sensitive to fish initially for some reason and caused her a bit of upset tum - so could have been this?

    if you are moving on to completely raw, I would stick with one protein for now, just to get her tum settled on raw - then once she is normal on it, add others gradually.

    of course it could just be the switch - some dogs react differently to others. whilst i wouldnt say it was completely normal to have upset tum, it is quite common when switching. just to check - sorry to be so graphic - but are we talking loose poops when she goes? or uncontrollable liquid!! :eek:

    if it is the latter, this is NOT normal...

    will check back a bit later to look for your reply :)
     
    #112 katiefranke, Aug 31, 2010
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2010
  13. EBT

    EBT PetForums Junior

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    Hi Katie, am about to start feeding my 2 English Bull Terriers raw and was wondering what kind of size freezer you use please? There's no room in house freezer so separate one is necessary and easier you say. Obviously it depends how much I intend to store but was just after a rough idea. Looking at 170 litre chest frezer, is that big enough, or do I need a bigger/longer one? Bit of a strange question but think you have answered all my other queries in this sticky. Thanks a lot!
     
  14. Blobbet

    Blobbet PetForums Member

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    My 2 just ate their first bit of raw chicken !! :eek: :thumbup:
    It was just some breast fillet cut up into pieces , they were a little hesitant at first and then realised they liked it hehe , didnt give them much though and also didnt feed anything else all day other than 2 pea sized treats each :p
    Just scared now incase they get upset tummies :eek:
    Hope they want to eat it again tomorow too lol

    :D
     
  15. SlingDash

    SlingDash PetForums Senior

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    It's nice to know we're not the only veggie humans feeding our canine chums a raw, meaty diet! Some people have told us they think we're weird by doing so, and question why we don't now eat meat ourselves. :rolleyes:

    I'm not squeamish either, and have been cutting up whole ox hearts and raw liver and kidneys since we started feeding raw.

    Just one question if I may:

    Are turkey legs/bones as safe [supposedly] as chicken? I noticed a huge shard of bone when our big lad was chomping his way through his turkey leg tonight, and I dare say he would've swallowed it had I not taken it off him.

    Having said that, I dare say he DID swallow a whole load of them in the huge lumps he was crunching up and gulping down, and I don't think I'll ever be convinced that this is safe for them to eat. :(

    People have said time and time again that raw bones don't splinter, but that is simply NOT the case I'm afraid.
     
    #115 SlingDash, Aug 31, 2010
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2010
  16. NicoleW

    NicoleW PetForums VIP

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    How interesting. I was always advised against feeding dogs raw meat as it could make them more prone to being vicious, another myth eh?

    Well I was seriously considering it until I saw the pictures, I am so squeemish I don't think I could do it! Benefits of raw feeding sounds like the best way to feed your furry friends!
     
  17. chelleANDlottie

    chelleANDlottie PetForums Junior

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    hi
    the "explosion" was after turkey not the fish! i think it was more my fault than hers! we fed her late about 8pm, and you said it goes through quicker than kibble, i tried to make her settle as it was too early to get up, but gave in, i guess she may just ave held it too long and been desperate.!
    she been feed just raw all weekend, acording to you she should be eating 10% of he weight a day is that corrcect? mine will onl eat a small amount. but has alwys only ate a small aount.
    shes healthy and active so i guess thats all i should worry about.

    chelle
     
  18. EBT

    EBT PetForums Junior

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    From what I've read on this thread, it's 20% of their adult body weight per week. Working out to about 2-3% per day.
     
  19. katiefranke

    katiefranke PetForums VIP

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    Hi there EBT :), well really any size - I have an under-counter freezer in the house and have just got a tall larder freezer for the garage - and thats for 1 dog 17kg and 2 cats of 4kg-ish. But I am planning for a puppy for next year too, so took that into account!

    I could have just done with the under-counter one for quite some time, but I want to be able to buy in bigger bulk and be a bit more organised, so the tall one is gonna be good. You can get a chest one, but I prefer not to have to rummage, so wanted the drawers :)

    Glad they liked it :thumbup: - did they have enough to eat? you dont need to starve them, but you are right to start off slow :)

    Yup, definitely another myth!! Some more info here that explains it well :D
    Myths About Raw: Will raw meat make my dog bloodthirsty?

    As I mentioned before, I prefer to take away some of the big lumps of bone in the turkey legs...many don't, but being the neurotic mum I am, I take the lump away in case maggie swallows it the wrong way. I always give her something tasty while Im taking it though in case she gets worried and thinks I am always going to take away part of her meal. :) I think it will also depend on the age of the turkey - older turkeys will likely have bones that are not as soft.

    Eating raw bones is no more and no less safe than most other things our dogs do and eat...why would mother nature make it that dangerous for animals to eat what they were born to? :confused: That would be a bit silly now wouldn't it... :)

    ah ok, well having read what you wrote about amounts, this could also be why if they had too much.

    It is not 10% - it is 2-3% a day (as EBT said, around 20% a week) of their adult weight. For some very young puppies who have been raw fed from the beginning, people often to prefer to give them as much as they will eat (or around 10% of their current body weight), as they are much better at regulating what they should eat, which might be what you were thinking with the 10%?...however, this would be too much for any adult, especially when just starting out. :eek: Hopefully a reduction in amounts will help with the upset tums. :)
     
    #119 katiefranke, Sep 1, 2010
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2010
  20. Blobbet

    Blobbet PetForums Member

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    Well i didnt give them much throughout the day , only a couple of small treats , just didnt want to cause any upset tummies :)
    I gave them about 2% of adult weight but will try give them more today :thumbup:
    Have to say i already noticed one difference last night , normally they would be stinking the room out with smelly farts :lol: but last night i didnt notice any!
     
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