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Discussion Starter #1
we have decided to cut chicken out of iorek's meals for a while to see if that helps with the itchies. he has not had chicken for 4-5 days now, so i would assume we would see a difference by now but we haven't... either way we have to go without chicken for 2 months now since i just ordered food and didn't order any chicken.

i just want to make sure this plan i have is ok for 2 months, if it is balanced enough. i decided to add some ground meals into the rotation because i am starting to worry that i am going to miss out on the balance or something.

this is the plan:

Sunday: beef neck bone (this is supposed to be a fast, a recreational bone to chew but to rest his stomach one day a week. the people who have the raw food company suggested we give this a try)
Monday: alternating ground beef and ground lamb meals - these are balanced 80% meat, 10% organs, 10% bone
Tuesday: meaty lamb rib
Wednesday: alternating ground lamb or beef
Thursday: meaty pork neck
Friday: whole atlantic mackerel
Saturday: alternating ground lamb or beef

on the days that he gets lamb rib and meaty pork neck he gets 1/10 of a pound (how much he eats in a day) of beef organs.

what do you think about this plan? i think that i will keep the ground meals for 3 days a week even when we add chicken back in (if i can add chicken back in) then it will be one day beef, one day chicken, and one day lamb.

also, iorek had lamb for the first time in a while on friday and he was burpy. he had ground lamb yesterday for supper and was burpy again. we ran out of lamb before we ran out of everything else so he went without it for about 2-3 weeks. do you think he is having a reaction to it? like it is not agreeing with him?

thanks for any input you have! :)

iorek says thank you too!
 

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I think you are doing fine without feeding the ground premix stuff. I don't think you need it. I would rather feed pork neck than beef neck because the pork bones are easier on the teeth. You could add some turkey parts and some pork parts and be in good shape without the ground premix stuff. Oh, and I would add something like beef liver and/or kidney for organs. You would have a good variety without feeding ground. From time to time you could feed some bonless pork roast when you get it on sale. Maybe some pork ribs occasionally when its on sale. Or even beef roast when price permits.

My guess is that lorek is gassy and burpy from gulping the ground stuff. Burpy and gassy isn't a real big deal. I wouldn't loose a lot of sleep over it.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
thank you

i wasn't sure if turkey would be too close to chicken. i can get ~ 1 lb turkey necks for 90 cents a lb at the grocery store but it seems like they are only available during christmas since i can't find them now. do you think turkey leg bones are ok? i can get turkey legs for pretty cheap.

i do feed beef organs on the days where he is not getting ground or fish. it is kidney and liver.

i don't know if i gave up the ground i would be able to get iorek enough meat. i get the ground for 1.99/lb. i can't get any other kind of meat for that price at the grocery store. i am going to get a costco membership when the one close to me opens and maybe i will be able to get some meat there cheaper.

iorek didn't gulp the ground food :) he never gulps anything. he is a very meticulous eater. he will chew one kibble if i give him one ;) the ground lamb yesterday was actually still frozen somewhat, i took it out in the morning to thaw in the fridge but it didn't thaw... last friday he had lamb rib and was burpy then too. he had lamb rib this evening too so i will have to see about him being gassy.
 

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I've never fed a turkey leg but I've fed necks and wings. You might try wings to see how they do. Legs would probably be ok too. Either may be too big for your dog to handle so just try one and see what happens. I think you have a little dog. I get Boston Butt pork roasts for less than 1.99/lb when its on sale. I get beef heart (not really an organ for our purposes) for around $1/lb. Keep an eye on the sales and you should be able to get more things for less than $2.

It may be the fat in the lamb that is causing the burps.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
my dog is not that little, he is 50 lbs!

i live in canada, it is rare to get meat on sale like that. that is why i am hoping that costco opens soon. maybe they will have good prices.

i think that i will try a turkey leg and see where it goes. i never see turkey wings in the grocery store.

i haven't seen beef heart in the grocery store here, but i can order it from the company i get the dog food from for 1.59/lb. i don't like to give him a meal of beef heart because he has loose stools. i don't know how to get the right amount of meat and bones if i have to do beef heart and then some kind of bone. that is why i went with the ground, it is convenience and also i know that it is balanced. i did get beef liver from the grocery store the other day to make the liver "brownies" posted here but it was 4.47 for a pound!! i can get a beef liver and kidney mix from the company i order from for 1.59/lb.

it could be the fat in the lamb. i was thinking i may have been giving him too many different treats so today he got a little bit of N-R-G salmon stixx treats and a few orijen 6 fish kibbles in his kong when i had to go out. he doesn't seem burpy right now. the first day back with lamb he had a few liver "brownies" and also capstar (darn fleas) and then yesterday he had salmon stixx, freeze dried cheese, and a little bit of natural balance roll for training and brushing (a little bribe goes a long way when it comes to brushing him!)

thank you for your help! :)
 

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OK, 50lbs is not what I thought. For some reason I pictured him smaller. Beef heart is a very rich meat and you don't want to give him a full meal of beef heart just yet. In time you will probably be able to do so.

You worry way way way too much about the amount of bone. Don't be so concerned about it. Feed a variety of animal parts and the bone thing will take care of itself. I never give thought to the amount of bone my dogs are getting. Most people feed way more bone than they need to. If you only feed 15% bone in a month you are doing fine. That means when you feed 10lbs of food only 1.5 lbs needs to be bone. More is ok. A little less is ok. One very important thing to remember is that you don't need to feed bone every meal. If you want to go a couple of days without feeding bone, its no big deal. Most chicken parts are 30% to 35% bone so you could feed every other meal boneless if you wanted to.

One good judge of how much bone to feed is if his stool comes out of the chute white and powdery, you can bet you are feeding way too much bone. If stools are soft and mushy, you probably need to add some bone. Be aware that other things can cause soft and mushy (too much organs). Remember that for our purposes, heart is not an organ. It is muscle meat and fat.

I'm pretty tired tonight. Hope all this makes sense. :)

PS You pretty much have to feed no bone at all to feed too little. It's much easier to feed too much than not to feed enough if you are feeding whole animal parts.
 

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When offering a new food offer a small amount, not a whole meal. Sassy even had a reaction to rice when she had been off it for a few months and that had been part of her diet her whole life. One blobby poop but still! I am concerned about the bony meat. Hope it isn't too much bone. Even though Max only eats the spike on pork neck bones and I can barely feel the bone in all the meat he has pronounced bone poop the next day. I didn't like turkey much. Very hard to cut the bits up and the bone is more brittle than pork or lamb. I would try breasts of turkey. Since the ground meat days are balanced I would try for more meat less bone on whole food days. Not turkey necks!

And yes, keep chicken off the menu for several months. Check your treats for it as well. When trying it again add only a bit for a week and increase to a full meal IF you don't see any reaction.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
thank you for the information. my problem happens when iorek gets too much meat. when he has a whole meal of meat he has runny poops. i really can't afford to get any sort of beef or pork that is boneless or even low in bone unless i order it from that company. they have beef tongue and beef heart. i don't know that i would be able to do part meat and part bone that way since everything comes to me in 1 lb packages. there is absolutely no way i could afford to get iorek's food at the grocery store. everything in canada is WAY WAY more expensive. i can't afford turkey breasts. we don't eat chicken breasts unless i can get them on sale. they are regularly ~$23/kg (~10.50/lb) and we can't afford that. who can afford to pay $10/day to feed one dog?? not me... :( beef and pork are never less than $3-$4/lb and that is on sale. i would love to be able to go to the store and pick up roasts and stuff like that to feed him but it can't happen.

iorek really seems to need a higher amount of bone in order for his stools to be firm. he had lots of problems with loose stools. that is the reason we switched to raw, that and the fact that i feel that it is a healthier diet for him.

iorek's treats are usually just dehydrated liver made locally, N-R-G salmon stixx, or freeze dried cheddar cheese. he was getting N-R-G chicken stixx before i decided to cut out the chicken. he also gets beef natural balance rolls, a small slice for training every few days.
 

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I understand. Too much bone isn't the best, mineral interactions and all that. I work hard to keep it down to 10% and mostly fail I am certain. Best thing I was able to do for the bone poop/meat poop thing was one meal a day, so glad I started that system. I would be feeding bone daily too. What if you offered some heart along with the neck bones? Max stops chewing on the bone when he gets full, if Iorek does the same and he eats the heart first then he wouldn't eat as much bone. Maybe. Got to find some way to feed that cheap nutritious stuff! If heart was the cheapest red meat I would be working hard to incorporate it into the diet. Bit by bit.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
thank you.

i will try to up the meat. it is just hard, but i guess if that is what is best for him that is what i will have to do. white, furry, sammy-bums just don't mix well with loose stools!
 
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