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i lub alda mi prens
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I keep having a hard time finding a decent dog food. Jake is doing fine in Diamond Naturals, but his coat is not very shiny and it's rough. I was thinking about going raw because I can get it in the store when I go, I could even go to the local guy who does the venison and get a whole deer for less than what it cost to buy 2 bags of food.

What are the things I need to think about and how do I change him over?

He's almost 6 months old. He'll be 6 months at the end of the month.
 

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Just a thought, but if he is doing well on the current food other than not having a very shiny/soft coat, you could try supplementing his food with either fish oil or salmon oil. We started doing that with Tucker last winter and his coat looks amazing. We always get great remarks about how soft and shiny he is. We use the human grade fish oil tablets that are 1000 mg each.
 

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I say kibble because it's already formulated. I don't have to worry about making sure they get enough of each vitamin/mineral (if you feed a decent kibble). It's also much easier in my opinion.
 

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If I had the time I wouldn't mind trying to work with a raw diet. When we were having that contamination scare a couple of years back....I thought real hard about it.

I'd get lots of information from others who have done raw for a while...and get tried and true techniques.

Good luck.
 

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I've been feeding our dogs raw for over a decade already, but have gone back to kibble, only to find that raw was better suited to a natural dog's diet. I don't regret it. I do buy a 15kg bag of Skinner's Salmon and Rice kibble to keep in the cool basement for either as treats, or for those days that I don't have enough raw foods, I just add a few kibbles as a filler. The bag will last me a good 6 months+ for 2 goldens and a sheltie.

I think that if you can get your hands on fresh venison for a fraction of what you pay for kibble, GO 4 IT!

Just like kibble have supplements, you'll still have to supplement your dog's raw diet with chopped up veggies, like carrots, celery, whatever you may have a bit of, add some greens and herbs... then you add cooked rice, or some soaked oats, the real kind, not that instant stuff. Not much, just a bit, just like a bit of the veggies.

Then you'll need to add some sort of high quality oil, like fish oil, or salmon oil, or even coconut oil. Stuff with lots of Omegas. I'll end an egg a few times a week, joghurt, or left-over whey, which will go a long way, cause if you give too much of it, they'll clean out their systems :)

I've also added chopped up pumpkin seeds to help clean out the worms they may have. sometimes I'll add some pumpkin seed oil. Make sure you always have carrots in their diet, cause its good for many things, as well as pigmentation :)

I'm pretty certain feeding a dog kibble most of its life can be harmful to its health. Its also not so good for their teeth, for a dog that is fed raw will get plenty of chances to naturally clean their teeth with raw meaty bones.

You couldn't tell that our 8yr. old Golden was 8 by looking at her teeth. They figured she was at the most 3 yrs. old I attributed that to her raw diet.

Another new revelation I've recently made was that adding colloidal silver to the dog's water will rid most teeth of tartar. I've also used the CS water for small ailments like diahrrea, cuts, mite bites. Our kitty has had it sprayed into her eyes with a mister as a precaution to any virus she could have gotten from outside, since I decided to go vaccine free. She's 6 months and as healthy and happy as can be. She also digs the raw meats and fish... oh, I forgot the fish! We feed the dog raw fish as well. Usually cleaned out fish, but with head and tail. Another thing you can give are raw chickens, either in pieces or ground up, but with bones, please. Its not as dangerous, but you still have to be careful, as some dogs will just wolf it down. If they throw it up, hope that its outside and don't be alarmed when they eat it up agian. Its perfectly normal and the dogs have no problems with it. They do it all the time when you're not around :)

Sorry this got so long. I'm such a huge advocate of raw feeding, and it would be nice if more people tried it out with the right advice and encouragement.

Most sincerely,
Aldona aka Aldi
 

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I'm pretty certain feeding a dog kibble most of its life can be harmful to its health. Its also not so good for their teeth, for a dog that is fed raw will get plenty of chances to naturally clean their teeth with raw meaty bones.
While most of us can agree raw feeding is a suitable form of feeding, as is kibble, I think to say that kibble is harmful is something you can not or will not prove. I understand your desire to feed and promote raw feeding, but please do not put down a way of feeding when you offer no scientific evidence backing up your claims.
 

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While most of us can agree raw feeding is a suitable form of feeding, as is kibble, I think to say that kibble is harmful is something you can not or will not prove. I understand your desire to feed and promote raw feeding, but please do not put down a way of feeding when you offer no scientific evidence backing up your claims.
I totally agree. Our GSD has been eating kibble her entire life and she is almost 11 and has always been in great health, other than some arthritis that she has developed as she has gotten older, but that is to be expected. As for her teeth, they are still in excellent shape, even in her old age. Our dogs get their teeth brushed several times a week and get marrow bones, which are awesome for their teeth. Not everyone has the time that is involved in feeding raw. For DH and I, our schedules are way too busy, plus we travel quite a bit. There is just no way that we could commit to feeding raw and consistently stick with it. My BIL recently started feeding his 5-year-old GSD a raw diet and it takes a huge amount of time. He also has one of his coworkers, who is a show dog handler and has been feeding raw for a several years, mentoring him with it. We feed our dogs high quality kibble along with omega 3 supplements and they do very well. I'm sure that raw is excellent and a lot of dogs thrive on it, but, like I said, some people just don't have the time.
 

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i lub alda mi prens
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Discussion Starter #8
Takes a lot of time hmmm... single mom... full time teacher... not sure I have that kind of time.

thanks for the info everyone :)
 

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Time is just dependant on how much you want to put into it. I work at a kennel that feeds raw to some of the boarding dogs as well as the owner's own dogs. As an example, it took me about 10 minutes to feed 10 dogs their raw dinners tonight, that includes adding supplements, serving each dog then picking up the bowls, washing the tub and bowls and then putting frozen food into the tub to thaw for the next day. It would have been faster but the two puppies are slow eaters so it took them a few minutes to finish their dinners.

My own dogs, doesn't take long either, I just put the supplements on their food if they're having it that day, feed them, then take out the next day's food to thaw while they're eating. Done! If I'm in a rush then it's a 'designated fasting day' and I feed them the next morning or whenever. Now, it did take time when I was getting bulk bags of items and repackaging them, but often that was a few hours every few months to stock up everything again, or sometimes driving to pick up stuff, but even then it wasn't like every mealtime took an hour to do. I'd just grab out something and toss it at them frozen if I was busy...

Lana
 

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Time is just dependant on how much you want to put into it. I work at a kennel that feeds raw to some of the boarding dogs as well as the owner's own dogs. As an example, it took me about 10 minutes to feed 10 dogs their raw dinners tonight, that includes adding supplements, serving each dog then picking up the bowls, washing the tub and bowls and then putting frozen food into the tub to thaw for the next day. It would have been faster but the two puppies are slow eaters so it took them a few minutes to finish their dinners.

My own dogs, doesn't take long either, I just put the supplements on their food if they're having it that day, feed them, then take out the next day's food to thaw while they're eating. Done! If I'm in a rush then it's a 'designated fasting day' and I feed them the next morning or whenever. Now, it did take time when I was getting bulk bags of items and repackaging them, but often that was a few hours every few months to stock up everything again, or sometimes driving to pick up stuff, but even then it wasn't like every mealtime took an hour to do. I'd just grab out something and toss it at them frozen if I was busy...

Lana


LOL I laughed at your last sentence... I used to do that a lot when I was still getting used to a raw feeding schedule and would forget to defrost their food some days. They actually liked it frozen a lot.. and I liked it because they'd slow down to eat.

I agree with this entire post. Raw feeding is not time consuming on a day to day basis, its the prep beforehand that takes time if you buy in bulk as I do. I buy meat every couple months or so, and after letting it defrost in the garage for a couple days, spend a good couple hours separating it and bagging it into daily portions. It's not the most fun way to spend my time, that's for sure.. and I bitch about it every time I have to do it LOL but honestly that's the only part that's time consuming and buying enough in bulk at a time ensures I won't have to do it too often. :)

Yes I feed mine a raw diet and think they both benefit from it healthwise and enjoy it immensely. Do I think kibble is poison? No way! I would never tell someone that is taking the time and spending the money to feed their dog a great diet that they are killing their dog because they choose not to feed raw. That's ridiculous. Raw feeding does take a time commitment in both preparation (if buying in bulk, which is honestly the only affordable way to feed raw IMO) and research put into planning a healthy balanced diet for the dog. If you are willing to put that commitment into it, then go for it!
 

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Yup, the old 'bag of chicken necks in the bathtub' days... I don't do as much bulk as I used to, but used to get whole green tripe in garbage bags, then spend a few hours hacking it up with the dogs standing there waiting for their chance to catch a mouthfull. It was so good for them but I found that smell just soaked into everything, the freezer contents all smelled like tripe, thawing it out meant the house smelled like tripe.... so I stopped doing it after the car suffered a spill and smelled like it too.

For those that don't have the joy of knowing the smell of green tripe.... well it's the unwashed stomach of a cow, which pretty much smells like what comes out of a cow mixed with rotting grass.... and that smell 'soaks' into everything. The kennel dogs had beef and tripe for dinner last night and my hands smelled like it when I got home, even after washing everything... my guys weren't impressed that they didn't get any.

Lana
 

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I've been looking into raw for a while now. I still haven't jumped in headfirst, as I can't find a good supplier of meat at a good price. But I have the freezer space and the time to do the prep work, just not the money to be buying meat from the grocery store. Once I find someone who can get me chicken, beef, organs I'll start to be a little more serious about it.
 

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i lub alda mi prens
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Discussion Starter #14
I've been looking into raw for a while now. I still haven't jumped in headfirst, as I can't find a good supplier of meat at a good price. But I have the freezer space and the time to do the prep work, just not the money to be buying meat from the grocery store. Once I find someone who can get me chicken, beef, organs I'll start to be a little more serious about it.
Most places have processing plants for wild game. There are lots of people who bring in their "game" and only want the heads and capes for mounting. They leave the rest of the animal there. You can usually pick it up for the processing fee. They will also cut it up in any way you ask them to. It's usually REALLY cheap... Like $60 for an entire deer.

Anyway... I better get off here... the kids are coming!!!!
 

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I've been feeding our dogs raw for over a decade already, but have gone back to kibble, only to find that raw was better suited to a natural dog's diet.
This kind of claim can't really be backed up with empirical evidence. Do you mean that in your personal experience your dogs did better on raw?

I'm pretty certain feeding a dog kibble most of its life can be harmful to its health. Its also not so good for their teeth, for a dog that is fed raw will get plenty of chances to naturally clean their teeth with raw meaty bones.
Kibble is generally thought to do a fairly good job of gently cleaning teeth, though most kibble-fed dogs will need some supplementary brushing in order to have bright white teeth. You may have had a good experience with RMBs and your dog's teeth, but I know dogs who had lovely teeth on RMBs during middle age who wore them down completely by old age. I'm not saying that's a terrible thing, but it's something to be aware of.

I don't mean to contradict any of your personal experience or to put down the idea of raw diets, but having done a massive amount of research and reading of primary studies on dog nutrition, I feel some responsibility to temper some of the claims and provide counterpoints when people ask on the forum.
 

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I forgot to add that I had a long talk with my ER vet (the dogs go to the local hospital for regular visits), and she had personally removed several obstructed bone chunks from dogs fed RMBs, and she had worked on a dog who choked to death on a chunk of an RMB. She felt very strongly that I should not feed raw.

Take that for what it's worth. Her personal experience in the ER may have made her feel the choking and obstruction hazards were higher than they statistically are. You'll find lots of raw feeders on the forum who've given RMBs for years and never had a hint of a problem. Still, my vet's experience was an important factor in my decision not to go in that direction.
 

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For those that don't have the joy of knowing the smell of green tripe.... well it's the unwashed stomach of a cow, which pretty much smells like what comes out of a cow mixed with rotting grass.... and that smell 'soaks' into everything. The kennel dogs had beef and tripe for dinner last night and my hands smelled like it when I got home, even after washing everything... my guys weren't impressed that they didn't get any.

I was just in chat the other night talking about this. I buy green tripe in 2lb chubs. I buy it ground... wow I can't imagine buying it whole and having to cut it all up.. ewwww! lol!!

I defrosted the chub in the garage, cut it in half in the garage, and fed the dogs outside and my whole house STILL smelled like it!! I always scrub the hell out of my hands immediately after handling it so it doesn't get a chance to soak in my skin and it stilllll smells like manure. Ugh!!

The dogs sure do go crazy for the stuff though LOL
 

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I was just in chat the other night talking about this. I buy green tripe in 2lb chubs. I buy it ground... wow I can't imagine buying it whole and having to cut it all up.. ewwww! lol!!

The dogs sure do go crazy for the stuff though LOL
Oh yes! The stench! I buy by the bulk at breeder's discount, already cut up and packaged into 1 kg bags, frozen.

I bought whole tripe once. Was a huge bag full, and I'll never do it again. The work was not worth what I saved on money, which was under a few bucks.

Someone had suggested to buy sale items, or talk to the butcher's in their larger supermarkets, or smaller ones. Everyone knows a hunter, or someone who knows one, you could ask them maybe. Another suggestion was to check Craigslist for meats that are freezer burnt, they usually get chucked, so that's free food right there. Won't harm the dog, or cat, its just freeze dried... real dry.

Aldi
 
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