Raw Diet - Who is feeding?
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Thread: Raw Diet - Who is feeding?

  1. #1
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    Raw Diet - Who is feeding?

    I'm curious. I just read the DCM posts......

    I shifted over to a raw diet about 2.5 years ago due to very poor quality kibble and the insane cost here in China. I won't dive into all the reasons why I have shifted. I can and will say that Shadow is a much happier and healthier MiniS.

    His diet is primarily raw skinless Chicken Breast. He gets 300 grams/day split into 2 meals. His meals also contain 100 grams/day of a steamed veggie mix. This mix is a concoction of my own base on many hours of research. Generally, it contains carrot, broccoli, snow peas, green beans, cauliflower and a bit of cooked oatmeal. The oatmeal is 50 grams inside of a 800 gram mix of veggie. His treats for training or grooming are either raw chicken bits or banana, apple, blueberry, strawberry....just enough for a smell and a taste. Each week he gets a raw skinless whole chicken leg, bone included.

    Occasionally, the chicken will be substitute with beef or pork. Rarely, have I been able to provide any suitable fish. Although, I could purchase fresh fish at the local grocery. A unique thing in China. The meat department has live fish tanks. All kinds of critters like turtles, shrimp, crayfish, clams and a variety of fish. You just grab the net, catch what you want, it gets weighed, killed, cleaned, bagged.

    Shadow is an active MiniS. Minimum 3 walks per day ranging from 20 minutes to 2.5 hours. Weekends, it is common for us to be out for 3-4 hours at a time. Yes, I watch the temperature. This time of year is very hot with temps in the mid to upper 30s C with humidity in the 70% ranges. Heat stroke is a spectre to avoid. Also need to be aware of pavement temperature to avoid burned pads.

    The Vet is pleased with Shadow's temperament, health, condition, coat, skin, eyes and his weight. He tips in at a lean, strong 13.5 lb.

    I learned much doing my research on canine digestion and their ancestral diet. I also learned that commercial dog food was invented around 1900. Didn't become common until after WW1. This is when Ken-L-Ration was raising herds of horses for their canned dog food. I learned that dogs are direct descendant from wolves. Humans and dogs have been together for over 30,000 years.

    So, these are just some of the things I have learned and experience with my investigation and switch to raw food for my Shadow.

    Anyone else????

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  3. #2
    Senior Member DaySleepers's Avatar
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    Re: Raw Diet - Who is feeding?

    Samwise has been raw fed on and off as long as we've had him, either prey model (meat/bone/liver/secreting organ only) or commercial premade raw that's a complete diet. We've also done a wide variety of kibbles, fed half-and-half, and fed mostly kibble with the occasional raw meaty bone for a chew. He does well on raw, and we've only switched him off it due to things like availability of organs being limited, cost, or living situation (I spent a couple years living with my parents, who weren't a fan). I won't comment on your diet specifically, since I've never researched how to balance a raw diet using only meat and vegetables, but currently Sam's eating a premade raw grind (a brand specific to Norway).

    Frodo was weaned onto a mix of premade raw grind and a premade fresh cooked food grind, which we've continued so far in the week+ he's been with us. He's growing well, great appetite, well formed poops, and overall no complaints.

    I don't have any miracle stories. No major changes to coat or muscle mass, no noticeable effect on temperament, no illnesses suddenly cured or improved. But as I said, both boys are doing well on it, we have affordable, complete options here, and I do think it's a very nutritious way to feed when it's properly balanced. I also think there's a lot of very good kibbles that many dogs (Sam included), do well on, with and without grains.

    I'm skeptical of the DCM scare, and will remain so until I see solid research. I find it interesting that the dog communities, veterinary and otherwise, over here aren't concerned, despite many of the so-called BEG foods being exactly the same brands as what's available in the US. I might be wrong, but based on what I've seen, I'm willing to take that chance. Other people might not be, and that's fine - heck, my own opinion might change in the future. But I have to pick and choose what I'm going to be anxious about or I'd never get off the couch, haha.

  4. #3
    Member laurelsmom's Avatar
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    Re: Raw Diet - Who is feeding?

    Laurel has been eating commercial raw pretty much from the beginning, She was supposedly raised on Purina Puppy Chow, but I could never get her to eat kibble after bringing her home. I tried everything. She liked to share my food, but since I don't eat meat myself, it was not enough for her to be healthy. She would eat canned Halo vegan formula (this was before the DCM scare) but it was not suitable for puppies. One of the appeals of getting a puppy rather than a kitten is that dogs are not obligate carnivores, but the more I read the more I began to think of going in the opposite direction.

    We started off with Stella & Chewy's dehydrated raw. Other than the price, this was no more aesthetically difficult than kibble. It is 90% meat, organs, and bone, so I was not paying for moldy cornmeal when I already had a kitchen full of quality whole grains, some organic and locally grown, and my own fruits and vegetables from the farmer's market. The dog food may have been grain free, but the dog never has been: she will seriously snatch a breadcrumb mid-air before it even reaches the ground if there are no grains in her bowl.

    When Chocolate came into our lives, the dog food bill more than doubled. I tried "topping Chocolate off" with kibble, but her tummy is sensitive and it didn't feel right to feed one dog the best of the best and the other the best I could afford. I switched to frozen raw as a base and became more adventuresome in the butcher section of the grocery store. I also became less adventuresome with sharing my own food when the DCM scare came out: no more shared spoonfuls on the trail, just tiny nibbles if it contained legumes. Chocolate is not a vegetable fan and she doesn't think grains are manna from heaven but she will eat pumpkin and brown rice stirred into her frozen raw.

    Next came chicken wings, chicken and turkey necks, chicken feet from the farmer's market, sardines, mackerel, a chicken back for Chocolate that took her three days to eat, and there is a whole chicken in my freezer that I am going to break down this week. Raw meat is less messy than cooked meat and does not have a strong odor in addition to being healthier for my pets. Just as I deserve better than Colonel McTrashburgers, my dependents deserve better than moldy cornmeal concoctions flavoured with meat that is unfit for human consumption.

    It started to feel like I might as well have gotten a cat until I actually DID get a cat. It was great to see the new baby's health improve dramatically after switching her from Purina Cat Chow to prepared raw cat food. I saw a price comparison online that showed me I was not really spending any more money than I would have on the cheapest Friskies canned I would have considered. I suspect that I am not really spending an absurd amount of money on my dogs either, I was simply uninformed and could not really afford to care for my "dream breed" properly anyway.

    But I was mistaken about "I might as well have gotten a cat" because once I learned about feline nutrition, I found out that I might as well have gotten a reptile. The kitty gets frozen feeder mice when the dogs get treats from the butcher's section of the grocery store. This is what my carnivorous pets need to eat. I am responsible for them.

    I'm not getting any grief from my conventional vet any more since the DCM scare and since my pets are obviously in such excellent shape. My holistic vet has never been anti-raw. I'm still learning and will probably spend less money, provide better nutrition for my carnivorous pets, and reduce my current carbon footprint as time goes on.

    The dogs are mostly on BARF and the kitten on prey model but I am interested in learning from more experienced raw feeders and am keeping an open mind. Food safety issues with meat do not come naturally to me, but I am careful and taking this journey at my own pace. If anything, I overdo the bone for the puppies; when Laurel's stool starts looking like something that you might carve into a beautiful piece of jewelry, I know it's time to back off a bit and buy more prepared dog food.

    ETA: as far as temperament goes, these are Chihuahua-Terrier crosses who could easily have made a snack out of a two pound kitten instead of playing with her as if she were another puppy. Laurel even dry nurses her. Raw meat does not make them vicious.
    Last edited by laurelsmom; 08-14-2019 at 11:02 AM.
    Yes, they're all mine, yes, I know what causes this, and if you think my hands are full, you should see my heart:

    Laurel the Wonder Dog, born on or about 9/1/18: micro-mutt, li'l yaller dawg, or "All-American".
    Chocolate (Blue Skies O' The Mountains), born 10/4/18: cute little mutt with anxiety issues and talent in Obedience class
    Dark Skies O' The Mountains, C.D., Shetland Sheepdog, crossed the Rainbow Bridge on or about 1986ish
    and the new furbaby, Willow the #AdventureKitty, 7/?/19

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  6. #4
    Senior Member parus's Avatar
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    Re: Raw Diet - Who is feeding?

    I have sizable dogs and live in a remote area with a very unreliable electrical grid - raw/homemade isn't practical for me, even if prep time was feasible, obtaining and storing enough meat wouldn't be. Maybe when I'm retired and have time to fish more. For now I feed kibbles that are known for good quality control and use fresh foods as supplements/treats.

  7. #5
    Senior Member NadiaK's Avatar
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    Re: Raw Diet - Who is feeding?

    My pup gets a morning meal of kibble with something added. Usually a little egg, yogurt, canned dog food etc. In the evening she gets the Stella & Chewy raw freeze dried patties. She much prefers the raw to the kibble. Just ordered her some Primal to try to rotate with the Stella's.

  8. #6
    Senior Member sydneynicole's Avatar
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    Re: Raw Diet - Who is feeding?

    My personal dog is on full raw. He eats a combo of grinds and PMR. Sometimes I will add veggies/grains just as an effort to keep his diet varied and balanced.

    My other two dogs, who are technically my parents' dogs, are on half raw half kibble at the moment. How much raw they get pretty directly correlates with what my finances are looking like for that month. I can luckily afford to feed my 15lb dog full raw, but the two other dogs weigh 210 pounds combined and I would be feeding at least 4-5 pounds a day to feed them both, which I can't afford at the moment as a college student working part time.

    I feel strongly about raw diets and I can't think of a circumstance that would cause me to stop feeding raw long term. For example, I will not be getting another dog of my own until I can afford to feed them a raw diet (next dog is going to be a big dog). If anything, I wouldn't be upset to feed a homemade cooked diet, but I really try to keep all of my dogs as far away from kibble/canned foods as much as I can afford to do so.

    With that said, I do not look down on people who feed kibble or try to shove feeding raw down everyone's throats. I advocate for it, I practice it, but I'm super against touting that raw is superior and kibble feeders should feel bad for not feeding raw. I understand the convenience and cost factors, and acknowledge that plenty of dogs do just fine on kibble.
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  9. #7
    Senior Member Kathyy's Avatar
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    Re: Raw Diet - Who is feeding?

    I'm feeding two dogs raw right now. Since they started eating the diet the day they came to me I cannot attribute any improvement to raw. They came here pretty neglected but not underfed.

    I did see big changes with the dog I switched from kibble to cooked to raw though. I thought he was fine on kibble, ate fine, didn't stink, good quality poop. On raw the slight amount of ear wax vanished, his coat went from sticky flyaway to silky, he grew 5 pounds of muscle as a senior dog and oddly his temperament improved. He was a nervous dog and his barks changed from terror to alert. The fur improvement was likely due to the high fat content and muscle because he was eating a low protein kibble.

    I do my best to balance to NRC numbers so prey model isn't quite enough. I don't want to waste calories on carbs because the dogs aren't getting all that much protein as it is so I use tablet supplements to balance the diet. I used the vitamin/mineral tab with the first dog then dropped it and he was clearly better with with so I kept it up with the little guys.

    I have serious doubts about the panic over kibble that's going on today. The way it all strongly suggests that only the big producers are capable of creating safe food is extremely suspect. I eat fresh and am very glad I'm in a position I can feed my dogs fresh and hope to be able to continue so as long as I have dogs.

  10. #8
    Junior Member Chopper&Drax- Rottweilers's Avatar
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    Re: Raw Diet - Who is feeding?

    One small suggestion. Consider adding a bit of organ meat to his diet to round it off.

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