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Discussion Starter #1
I have recently read both Merle's Door and Pukka's Promise by Ted Kerasote, which got me thinking about raw feeding. I tried it once before with Rascal, and he had bloody diarrhea, however he was later treated for giardia and the diarrhea went away completely. I am over 18 but currently in college and living with my mom, who is against raw feeding because of Rascal's sensitive stomach. More recently, I gave him and Panda some raw chicken neck pieces and they were completely fine, in fact it helped their poops firm up. My Aunt also works for Guide Dogs and is against raw feeding, saying she knew someone who's dog almost died from salmonella after feeding raw, and that dogs aren't wolves and have adapted to eat more processed foods. I disagree, however my mom keeps saying how will you afford it if they get sick from raw??? They are my dogs and I'd like to switch them to raw but I don't know what to do. I've talked to people on both sides of the issue and done a fair bit of research. My Chihuahua, Panda, is two pounds overweight and 8 years old. I've heard feeding raw will help him shed that weight. My younger Rat Terrier, Rascal, is perfect weight and very active but suffers from chronic allergies and takes meds everyday. I've also heard raw could help allergies/although some of his allergies are environmental. This would save a lot of money a month on meds and I'd be able to afford to feed raw. Any advice? Thanks
 

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Our dog has a sensitive stomach and she did fine when we switched her to raw. Her stools are much firmer now then they were before.

Just make sure you wash the dog dishes regularly and you should be fine.

What are you currently feeding?
 

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Salmonella is only an issue in dogs if the dog has a compromised immune system. (Plus, "I know someone who knows someone . . ." is the basis of every urban legend there is.)

It is your mom's house. If you want to do things purely under your rules, you need to live in your own place. Until then, if she's really opposed to raw feeding, buy the best kibble you can and research for later.
Obviously, you should have the money (or credit) to provide vet care to your dogs no matter what.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Except I basically pay the rent, and am on the lease as well. We could afford in an emergency it's just of course no one wants that to happen.
 

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With all the kibble recalls for salmonella you gotta wonder why people think raw meat is worse :p.

Unless you buy meat every day, you need a lot of freezer space. Plus there may be gross things thawing in the fridge (kidney = ugh). If this will really bother your housemates you might want to take that into consideration. If they would really freak out about prey-model raw you could look into a pre-made product. There are some dried raw products that might work for you, although they're pricey.
 

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Premade really isn't bad for small dogs. It's about $50 (+ or - a few depending on protein and brand) and last my 15lb dog about a month. 24 days give or take. So about 2 bucks a day to feed him. I really don't feel like that's all that much. Maybe compared to kibble or PMR but I don't think it's all that expensive really.

If I had a large dog I would prob just do PMR though.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Oh by the way Rascal is eating Royal Canin Low Fat Gastro Intestinal food mixed with canned EVO 96% chicken and Panda eats just canned EVO 96% chicken
 

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There is a middle ground......you could research and prepare home cooked food. Beats the heck out of kibble and shouldn't bother your mom.
 

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Raw can help you avoid food allergens for sure since you will be preparing it and it is pretty much all meat and organs. But no, it will not help environmental allergies.

Honestly, if they're YOUR dogs and you can afford the vet care, go for it.

I feed my three cats + 7 lbs dog raw. Been feeding raw for three years. Not a single incident of any of them getting salmonella poisoning or whatever else people are always afraid of lol. One of my cats had GI upset once. He refused to eat the wet food the prescribed, so I gave him plain chicken (with bone) for two days and he was back to normal. Could have just as easily happened eating cans or kibble, honestly.

I am more afraid of feeding them kibble with all the recalls and whatnot.

My cats and my dog all love their food. They are thriving on it. I honestly have never regretted switching to raw :)
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Home cooked food would be great, however I cannot afford it, it's super expensive and time consuming.

Taquitos,
Thanks! Good to know your pets are thriving on it. Have their coats gotten shinier or any other obvious benefits?
 

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Home cooked food would be great, however I cannot afford it, it's super expensive and time consuming.

Taquitos,
Thanks! Good to know your pets are thriving on it. Have their coats gotten shinier or any other obvious benefits?
Yes, I believe so. I originally switched them to raw after beginning work at a holistic pet boutique, where the owner of the store made her own brand of raw. I switched them all when one of my cats got urinary crystals, and developed a condition called FLUTD. He was being fed dry as a staple (for grazing) and wet once a day, but it still wasn't enough moisture. Since we've switched them we haven't had a flareup. The cats and dogs shed less than they did when fed dry, and my dog's fur does not get matted as easily as it used to. It's harder to note differences directly attributed to raw with my dog because I switched him to raw the moment I brought him home, and he was living in pretty horrible conditions before then (he's a mill rescue). I do know that his teeth are cleaner than most toy breeds, though, and he filled out (he was emaciated before) without getting fat.

Oh, and they all LOVE their food (cats used to kinda just pick at their food) which makes it very easy to feed them!

I think it's costing me way less than if I were to feed commercial raw, or cans, and I'm spending as much money on raw as I would if I were feeding premium quality kibble.

Meeko costs maybe $15-20/month depending on what types of protein I use. The cats cost about $40/month per cat.

Very affordable, imo, and they are much healthier :)
 

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Home cooked food would be great, however I cannot afford it, it's super expensive and time consuming.
I'm not sure why it would be more expensive than feeding raw; it's the same meat, just cooked! :p Plus a few supplements to cover what gets cooked out but nothing crazy.

I used to cook for one of my cats (FLUTD and she wouldn't eat canned). It did take some time but I'd make up a big batch and freeze it so it wasn't too bad. It was more expensive than Friskies but less expensive than a higher-quality canned food.
 

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I don't think you are any more likely to have a vet emergency while feeding raw than you are to have any other random health emergency. So I personally don't feel like that should be part of the consideration at all. The cost of the food, the convenience (or lack of it), and agreeing with your mom are probably the most important points. You could also consider the premade stuff as it's more convenient and not that expensive with little dogs.
 

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Home cooked food would be great, however I cannot afford it, it's super expensive and time consuming.

Taquitos,
Thanks! Good to know your pets are thriving on it. Have their coats gotten shinier or any other obvious benefits?
How would cooked food be more expensive than raw? It's just raw, cooked, with a few supplements.
 

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I put a lot of weight on Max when I cooked for him, took a whole year to take that weight off when he got to eat raw. Maybe if it takes one of your small dogs a lot time to eat some meals weight would be naturally regulated? Didn't work with now 14 pound Ginger who came here a very plump 19.5 pounds who could chew a big pork bone with enough meat to count for dinner left on it for 2 hours. Maybe with yours.

Cook chicken for the dog, what do you do with the bones? They are 30% of the weight of a whole chicken carcass! Feed raw, what do you do with those same bones? Feed them to the dog raw. That is why cooking is more expensive than raw. The cost of cooking? No idea whether my freezer running 24/7 costs more or less than the stove running a couple hours a week.

I should have bought taurine supplement as well. He had seizures as a young dog and a couple of scary heart checks as well, looking like a spaniel and spaniels can have heart and seizure problems due to low taurine levels. Taurine is reportedly depleted by exposure to heat. I didn't supplement with a whole lot, Brazilnut for selenium, zinc, a multimineral for magnesium and manganese but I do that for the raw diet anyway.

Max stopped tolerating any raw summer of 2013 so he was getting cooked food. I was sorry he no longer did well on raw but delighted in the chance to try cooking chicken bones until they got soft. It really works! I cook the chicken whole or in pieces just until cooked through then cool long enough to bone it reserving the meat and broth for food without cooking it to death. Put the bones in fresh water in a slow cooker [in the garage because it smells odd] for about 12 hours until a fork can penetrate the long bones and puree the bones and stock together in a food processor. I put the gunk into ice cubes trays and one cube was used for 2 days with calcium carbonate for the other half of the calcium he needed. Just cooked meat doesn't actually have enough phosphorus for a healthy dog so I was #1 not wasting bone weight, #2 making sure he got enough phosphorus. A pressure cooker would work as well but then you would have the smell in the house for a while.

I wouldn't try this for beef or pork bone so large enough bones found in chuck steak and pork shoulder were offered as a chew to Ginger. Even chewing on raw bone bothered his tummy, poor old guy.

Ginger has some sort of environmental allergy plus flea allergy. Raw has done nothing to help either allergy. She gets a Benedryl for the environmental and her eyes are clean and we give her that flea stuff on the dot every month! She has been on raw or cooked since she came here last year though, perhaps her issues were addressed in a similar manner at her former home and they did no good on a kibble diet, no idea.
 

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I feed both - raw and cooked.

One dog *loves* her cooked meats more so then raw meats; so she gets half/half. Half cooked/half raw - works great for her.

Cost is the same, personally.

Other dog eats total raw, this dog I didn't start on raw til he was 5yrs old. He always did have a sensitive stomach, and seemingly intolerant to everything I would feed him.

Started him - cold turkey - literally on raw one afternoon; within 2 days the boy had energy he'd never had before. I have NEVER looked back.

IMHO, you're *just* as likely, if not more so, to get salmonella issues with pre-packaged kibble/canned food then you are human grade raw. Salmonella in dog food is a HUGE problem; just because it's cooked, doesn't mean squat.

You have 2 small dogs; if you're shelling out money for the EVO canned food you're buying, you can definitely afford good quality pre-packaged raw - if you don't care to make your own.

Steve's raw patties for instance are something that I do here at my house, with 2 big dogs, they don't eat them as a sole diet, but they are very affordable as an addition to the overall diet. This would prevent one from having to have separate organ meats, etc defrosting in the fridge making other humans ill from the looks.

Also, IMHO, if you're paying just as much of the living expenses on a household as the next person, then you have equal right to the decision in what the dog is eating.

My parents live with me now; mainly because cost of living in general has gotten so high, and my house is more then big enough for everyone.

When I started feeding Raw last February it was somewhat *frowned* upon because my Mom had always believed feeding raw meant e-coli, etc. that was her fear. She had no qualms at all in feeding homecooked meals because she's never been a believer in kibble anyways - she always thought kibble was strictly for convenience and a *fast food* way of feeding a dog.

Within a week of feeding my big guy raw, and noticing changes that quickly, we've never looked back. My Mom is more then eager to dig out their raw food and feed their meals when I'm not around.

Kibble around here is the enemy because of so many bad reactions Rivers had to just about every brand we tried. And my Mom also had a Pomeranian in the past who's quality of life highly turned around once stopping kibble and feeding homecooked - so we've done the *been there, done that* scenario.

And we always fed what we thought were high quality dog foods, everything from Orijen/Acana to California Natural, etc, so it's not like we were feeding questionable products.

My food bill now, with 2 big dogs, is far cheaper then it was when I was feeding one dog Merrick grain-free and the other Fromm's Gold puppy (when we first got her).
 
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