For starters, I have already used all of the above links in the stickies, and while they were very helpful, some of them had conflicting information, and they didn't answer some of the specific questions I had.
I want to switch my dog's food. He's currently on Blue Buffalo, which I've been a long-time fan of, but more recently I've learned that the quality of the food has gone down. I'm interested in starting him on a raw diet, but like I've mentioned, I'm getting a lot of conflicting information. And now that I just got off the phone with my vet, who horrified me telling me that she 'does not recommend a raw diet, because they can have harmful bacteria in them, (which, I told her I planned on buying him the best, human-grade food available, which didn't seem to change her opinion,) and can be extremely high in salt, (and in the same breath recommending I switch to Science Diet, *shudder*) I'm more confused than ever.
It was my understanding that dogs NEED the raw food to stay healthy, for higher brain functions and immune system function and such, and to cook the food would actually be more harmful to them than the raw food. My vet just told me the opposite, that I should cook the food first, to kill all the bacteria. So now, I pretty much have no idea where to start, or what to believe.
My specific questions are:
Even if I buy the best raw food available, is my dog still at risk?
Can I feed my dog BOTH kibble and raw food? If so, how?
What brand of raw food can I trust? (I'm looking at Primal, currently)
Are there benefits to feeding RAW raw food, like organs, fur and bones, versus BARF?
If you guys could help me out with this confusing subject, I would be very grateful. :3
Edit: I forgot to mention, Rex just came home from the vet after being diagnosed with Pancreatitis. He's home now, still with a swollen pancreas, but healing with medication. Is raw food a good decision for this new development?