A number of myths are still on the market in regards to the raw pet food eating regimen.
While it’s not a one-size-fits-all solution in any respect (no pun intended), I desired to shed some light on the very best practices of raw feeding and enable you to resolve whether it’s best to feed your adult dog or puppy with raw meat.
If you happen to’ve been following our Instagram account, you most likely already know that my Rottweiler Amalia is on a raw eating regimen since she was a puppy (after a few months of hesitation).
Pointless to say that she absolutely loves it (consider me, we all know obviously – more on that below).
This text should act as a (kinda) comprehensive guide to enable you to resolve if a raw eating regimen is correct to your dog and also you.
We can even look into different models and what model it’s best to follow (Barf vs. Prey model).
Our Raw Eating regimen Journey
To offer you a rough idea of what we went through until we arrived at our Rottie’s current eating regimen, here’s an summary.
Bear with me, I’ll let you know the best way to find raw meat to your dog below, together with suggestions that designate how you may feed your dog raw on a budget (super inexpensive options on the market!).
B.A.R.F. Eating regimen
We started off with feeding a BARF eating regimen (meaning that we added fruit & vegetables and rumen on top of her muscle meat, meaty bones, and organ meat).
We used ground meat processed into little blobs.
Why? It’s easy to meal prep since every bag is made up of the identical amount of ingredients with their respective percentages.
Our dog was never a great chewer anyway.
A number of delivery services stock ground (or minced) meat.
If you happen to’re a beginner, it’s great to make use of a whole menu in this way to introduce your dog to a brand new softer texture but I wouldn’t recommend this as a everlasting eating regimen.
Why must you miss the chance to your dog to make use of his jaw and feel the feel?
Take note to regulate the eating regimen to your dog.
For a dog that wolfs his meals down like crazy or for senior dogs, this could be an ideal option.
Not to say the plus when it comes to transparency you’ve with whole/sliced pieces of meat because it didn’t undergo the grinder.
I only mention that because I’ve seen muscle meat mixed with organ meat and the label didn’t give any percentages.
She began on a day-to-day balanced eating regimen, meaning that every single day and even meal contained the precise percentage respectively from meat to fruit and vegetables, even when these numbers were odd.
Adding Meaty Bones
After some time, we began so as to add meaty bones (with a purpose to stop supplementing calcium) but soon recognized that this was highly inconvenient for the reason that bones were packaged in 2+ pound plastic bags.
Distributing wasn’t as easy as with ground meat anymore.
Since meal prep wasn’t really easy anymore, we began a semi-balanced eating regimen, meaning that we occasionally had unbalanced meals with meaty bones only.
We all the time made sure she had a balanced week though.
What to avoid: Ensure that not to present your dog cooked bones.
You may additionally need to skip the weight-bearing bones or at the least take them away out of your dog once he’s finished.
Necks are especially easy to chew through, followed by turkey legs/drumsticks.
Beef bones, feet, ribs, and tails can be given but could be reserved for the more advanced chewer, depending on the animal they got here from.
50/50 with High-Quality Kibble – Bad!
Now, we had the fantastic idea to start out feeding raw with high-quality kibble 50/50.
Loads of benefits, right? Great to get your dog used to kibble in case you’re traveling.
Premium food has a variety of good ingredients stuffed into one tiny piece of kibble and it’s easy to arrange.
What should I be careful for when feeding or supplementing kibble (transition periods come to mind, definitely doable without adding kibble though)?
Your pet food should all the time contain a high amount of meat (>60%) with wild herbs, berries, etc. added to the combination.
Does kibble must be grain-free? No, it doesn’t. In actual fact, a variety of “grain-free” kibble has peas as their major ingredient which isn’t good in any respect.
Nothing to argue against a high-quality kibble with rice on the third place or beyond on the ingredient list.
Anyway, as we neared the tip of our current premium kibble bag, our dog began to dislike the taste and although she still ate, she wasn’t hyped in any respect anymore about her food (which when you knew her, was a red flag).
Her coat wasn’t as shiny anymore and she or he began shedding more. Well, back to her raw eating regimen.
80/10/10 Prey Model
We switched to the prey model which suggests 80% muscle meat, 10% organ meat, and 10% raw meaty bones.
Once I say prey model, I don’t mean “Whole Prey” but somewhat “Frankenstein Prey” (only bits and pieces from the previous animal).
Taking into consideration that she was just about grown up by now, we also thought she might prefer the usual texture.
Switched to chop meat as a substitute of ground meat.
Plot twist: This was much more inconvenient to meal prep, so we decided to go together with balanced weeks only.
Some days have meat only, other days feature mornings with nothing but organ meat.
What We Feed Our Rottie Now
Ultimately, we decided to often feed her fruit and vegetables (she loves Banana and about the whole lot that’s edible) in addition to rumen again.
Principally, we’re feeding a mix of the barf and prey model.
Less fruit & vegetables and rumen than in a barf eating regimen but greater than within the prey model.
Sometimes we also switch from cut meat with balanced weeks to minced meat with balanced meals (several ingredients in a single box).
Long story short: So long as your dog’s raw eating regimen week is balanced, you’re wonderful.
Can I Feed My Dog Raw Ground Beef?
Short answer is yes, you certainly can.
This might probably the most common meat source for dogs on a raw eating regimen nevertheless it’s essential to notice that (regardless if it’s raw or not), relatively many dogs react allergic.
There are alternatives for dogs with allergies though and a raw eating regimen makes it easy to sort the issue out when you know which animal is the wrongdoer.
Where To Find Raw Meat for Dogs
Now you most likely need to know where to search out inexpensive raw muscle and organ meat.
- Local butcher
- Supermarket (especially chicken drumsticks, liver, etc.)
- Raw food stores (obviously)
- Delivery services (frozen minced and ground meat)
- Hunting (only when you’re allowed to, hardened and use the entire prey)
The local butcher often has great deals and is greater than glad to assist out, plus you mostly know where the meat is coming from.
In the method you’re supporting small business owners.
Options may vary depending on where you reside but talking to your butcher and explaining your situation can actually help rather a lot with getting high-quality meat!
One other tip to get monetary savings in your dog’s raw eating regimen: Buy in bulk and freeze it.
Seriously, we all the time buy nearly 100 kilos of meat and store it in a separate freezer.
Raw Eating regimen on a Budget
If you happen to’re on a budget, it’s best to attempt to get bulk discounts.
Also, if you’ve an area butcher, try to ascertain a great relationship with their family business they usually’ll be glad to hit you up if something’s extremely low cost and even free on short notice since many organs are only waste for the human grocery store.
If you should know more about how much I actually pay for the raw eating regimen of my 100 pound Rottweiler, take a look at this text concerning the lifetime cost of a big breed.
Photo by Pawleaks / My Rottie Amalia showing off her shiny coat
Pros and Cons of a Raw Dog Food Eating regimen
Many individuals report similar benefits while opponents of the raw eating regimen mostly indicate the negative effects of not balancing your dog’s eating regimen.
Try what PetMd has to say and be sure that to read up on the opinions of raw eating regimen opponents to get a much bigger picture.
At all times do your research!
- Less shedding, shinier coat
- Cleaner teeth (when you’re feeding bones)
- More energy (observed across all ages from pup to senior)
- Less stool that’s more solid
Cons (a variety of which may be avoided with a correct raw eating regimen)
- Nutrient deficiency in case your dog’s raw eating regimen isn’t balanced
- Danger of salmonella and other bacteria (all the time clean up feeding space)
- Dogs who like to gulp might choke on bones (supervision is vital)
- Break teeth (no weight-bearing bones)
Let me know what your experiences with feeding raw are and if you’ve successfully transitioned your dog!
Disclaimer: This blog post doesn’t substitute veterinary attention and doesn’t intend to accomplish that. I’m not a veterinarian or pet nutritionist. In case your dog shows any sign of illness, call your vet.