Raw Feeding? What's That? Come Find Out!

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by CountryGoalie, Dec 5, 2004.

  1. CountryGoalie

    CountryGoalie Well-Known Member

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    We feed a raw diet to our dogs.. I'm not the greatest at explaining, and there are some excellent sites out there, so I'll just post those. However, since switching from kibble to a raw diet, our dogs have better coats, MUCH healthier teeth and gums (and breath), are more alert, actually look forward to their meals (this including our big male who was ALWAYS picky with kibble). It is just much better for them, and while it may sound like much work, it's not too bad once you get your routine going. It's no more expensive than kibble. And you can vary it so widely ... anyway. On to the links.

    The search for better dog nutrition marches on <--- lists the basic idea behind it.

    Benefits of Dog's Raw Diet <---- lists the many benefits of raw diet, as well as debunks some myths about it

    Biologically Appropriate Raw Food (BARF) <---lists a basic menu and how to prepare it

    Raw-Feeding a Sick Dog <--- not a lot of information on the actual raw-feeding process, but it's a good story

    Raw Feeding @ Wayeh Kennels <---has a fascinating bit about raw-feeding puppies and the differences they saw between kibble-fed and raw-fed puppies

    I hope everyone gets something out of these links. Good day!
     
  2. southerngurl

    southerngurl le person Supporter

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    I have also looked into feeding raw. I did try it for a while. I think it is beneficial, but a mixture of cooked and raw is probably the best you can do. A premium (real premium) natural food with the addition of raw meat.

    I believe this due to the fact that dogs have been fed cooked meat for so long because they have been with humans and are domesticated, I think they have adapted to properly digest and benefit from cooked, yet, they still benefit from raw also.

    I wanted to ask, what were you feeding before?

    There is a good book on the subject, dang it, I forgot the title. It's by Juliet de barclei levi. If I spelled it right. :eek:
     

  3. insanity

    insanity Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the links! I have looked into it before but couldn't find very much (as far as what to feed) at the time.
    I did find one very good site.Here it is, to add to the list.
    http://www.njboxers.com/faqs.htm

    I have been giving a few veg's. to my pooch in a kinda pre search to see if she will willing eat them raw.Surprisingly she will eat many things freely.Even Carrots. :eek: This dog should be easy to make meals for.As long as she thinks its people food she will eat anything that hits the floor :D How ever i read some where that some veg's. needed to be cooked or parochially cooked to aid in digestion.Figured i needed more info before trying to completely change her diet.I think im actually going to get up off my butt and do it now.But i have much to learn as we do not try to eat healthy our selves. :rolleyes: Hoping to change that also.
     
  4. insanity

    insanity Well-Known Member

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    Aha! I just read and remembered the part that was also my hold up.Dogs are unable to digest the cell wall of intact veggies.They need to be pulverized in a juicer/blender/food processor of some sort.I hadn't thought about the blender! ;) I do have one of those.
    I remember one article i read a while back that also made since of this.As dog/wolves eat the organs and stomach contents first, of the animals the kill.Stomach contents because it is already partly digested/broken down.

    Ive been wanting a juicer for a while now.Humm now i no what i could do with the left over pulp. :D (Honey i no what i want for X-mas now! :D )
     
  5. Mastiff

    Mastiff Well-Known Member

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    We have been raw feeding our dogs for years with excellent results.
    To me feeding your dog commercial dog food instead of a raw diet is comparable to giving your baby junk formula instead of nursing.
     
  6. DreamingBig

    DreamingBig Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for this info. Shouldn't be too hard for homesteaders who have extra vegies and roosters around. It's gotta be easier than caponizing! :eek: :haha:

    Chris
     
  7. Maura

    Maura Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We feed BARF. I broke down and bought Ian Billinghurst's book, Give Your Dog a Bone. It's not the best written book I own, but it's a start. Contrary to what people will tell you, your dog will not start killing your livestock if you feed raw meat. My dog mostly gets chicken, yet we have ducks and chickens free ranging and unbothered by the dog. I think BARF is the best thing, and much easier than one might imagine. Cheaper than kibble too, if you have a butcher near you that will sell you "soup bones", or buy on sale. Sometimes I can get chicken legs at 49c a pound and I stock up. I always cook a vew extra veggies and give the leftovers to the dog. Of course, he also gets farm fresh eggs and poop.

    The thought of feeding my pup commercial food makes me sick, and the discussion about Ol Roy and Purina... yech!
     
  8. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

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    The fact that dogs will eat that unidentifiable garbage they sell in sacks is proof that if you starve an animal it will eat about anything. The pet food industry is 90% scam.

    I feed my dogs meat for the most part. Some vegetables and starches but I would say 90% meat. Pretty much the same with the cats. Dogs and cats are designed to eat meat and that is what I give them. Slap down a slab of meat and a plate full of vegetables and see which he eats. I don't remember any of my pets being sick. Other than vaccinations and an injury or two they were never seen by a vet. Healthy active animals.
     
  9. southerngurl

    southerngurl le person Supporter

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    That's not cheaper. The stuff from your farm yea, but not the meat.

    Yea, I think letting your animals at least have access to the outdoors will probably fill any gaps in what you are feeding (not you in particular, a generic you). If your animal is inside or stuck in a yard, you have to worry more that he/she is getting what he/she needs. Animals will seek out things they are missing from their diets if they have access to it. My dogs have been chowing on the winter rye I planted as a cover crop as though it were candy! They can't walk through it without eating it! Cat's love it too. I never knew it was such a popular green for dogs and cats.
     
  10. DayBird

    DayBird Big Bird

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    We're now up to 64 pots of wheatgrass being sold at my petstore each week. I'll start ordeing more soon. They're 3inch pots and sell for $3.99 each. I sometimes have a hard time keeping enough.
     
  11. southerngurl

    southerngurl le person Supporter

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    You ought to buy the seeds in bulk (not much bulk, for something that wouldn't require many seeds per product), and fix up your own. Make a "special" mix of wheat, oat and rye maybe? I can't believe someone would pay that much for it! Hmmm, need to sell that on my website!
     
  12. Maura

    Maura Well-Known Member Supporter

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    ****************

    How do you know it's not cheaper? First of all, I have to feed my dog less by weight when I feed him raw meaty bones than if I give him cheap kibble. Secondly, the cost of my leftover vegetables is hardly a bank breaker. I believe his diet his rounded out pretty well by the liver, chicken innards, occassional oatmeal etc that he gets.

    He's such a good dog :)
     
  13. southerngurl

    southerngurl le person Supporter

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    I was referring to the chicken wing's price. That doesn't seem cheaper. There is much water in fresh meat, thus the weight is mostly moisture. I'm surprised you would feed less by weight, but less by volume, yes. Probably not less by volume than quality dry foods though. For example, what size is your dog? Your average dog is 30 lbs. He would consume about 1.5 cups or less (most likely less, FRR seems to have all of their recommendations a little high) a day of the Flint River Ranch. That would cost you 49 cents a day or less.

    You are getting excellent food at that price too, I've yet to hear anyone have bad experience with FRR without overfeeding. People tend to overfeed when they are coming off of purina, science diet, ect. I've heard of dogs with kidney problems improving, hot spots dissappearing, FIP not recurring, and of course the usual shiny coats, energy, ect., and had amazing things with my own animals too. My cat would throw up all the time, even raw food. He has never thrown up the FRR after months of eating it! Haven't a clue. My older dog had the dullest coat, look pathetic limping around everywhere. Now she has a shiny coat, energy, and doesn't limp (the last one due to the chondroitin and glucosamine in treats).

    I'm not saying raw diets aren't good, I think they are if done right. I just don't think they are cheaper, unless you are growing your own ingredients. Who grows flax seeds and menhaden fish though?


    We have one cat that goes NUTS when he smells raw meat, especially deer. Tries to get up on the counters when we are cutting it and everything! Once chewed through a grocery bag and the wrapping on the meat when we left it in the floor for about 2 seconds! My other two cats won't touch it, and as I said, on throws up when he eats it for some reason (I got him to eat it by mixing cooked and raw together).

    I personally think dogs and cats have such short lifespans, we need to get all the time out of them we can. I worry more about my pets nutrition than my own, but I'm gonna live a while, they won't. When you are making your pets diet yourself, it can be hard to get all these extra ingredients that add extra something to the diet. They aren't necessary, but make things extra good, ya know? I want to get every good year out of them I can. I think a mixture of quality food and some raw meat will do that.
     
  14. sylvar

    sylvar Well-Known Member

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    Ok....Somebody clue me in here. I always heard you shouldn't give chicken bones to dogs. Supposedly because the splinter when they chew them, unlike beef and pork bones. When did the rules change? And how come nobody told me! :)

    Shane
     
  15. southerngurl

    southerngurl le person Supporter

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    You shouldn't give cooked chicken bones to dogs. Once they are cooked they will easily splinter and can puncture the gut. When they are raw, they can be fed to dogs, as they are not splintery. The dogs can benefit from the minerals in the bones, and the marrow inside them.
     
  16. Rivka

    Rivka Well-Known Member

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    You should never give your dog COOKED bones- the raw ones are fine. Cooking makes the bones brittle and dry- raw ones don't splinter. I've fed my dog raw for years, and he's doing much better than he was on the store stuff. There are sources for chicken backs and necks that you can buy in bulk and it works out very cheap. Plus no dental cleanings, better overall health and less poop to pick up!

    (sorry typed at the same time as above)
     
  17. Mastiff

    Mastiff Well-Known Member

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    While I have heard good things about Flint River - our vet even used to sell it. But he agrees that it does not have all the health benifits of a raw food diet.
    He calls the natural kibble dogs foods like Flint River second best. Following his advice I care about my dogs enough to feed them the best.
     
  18. southerngurl

    southerngurl le person Supporter

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    I understand his opinion, and used to think the same. However, I now disagree. As said before I think a raw diet is great too.

    I personally prefer the FRR with the occasional addition of raw meat / eggs however. That's why I came to sell it. If I'm going to tell everyone about it anyway...

    Soon my dogs will be eating kefir too.
     
  19. Lauriebelle

    Lauriebelle Well-Known Member

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    I would love to feed my dog a raw diet but I worry about Salmonella and worms. I know everyone says that the dog's stomach can handle it....but what about us...The dog eats the raw meat...licks the arm of the couch...a child's face...etc...

    The other thing that I worry about IS the bones causing intestinal damage...choking..etc. There are several cases of that written up on various websites and that is a huge concern!

    Any info or thoughts on these concerns? I truly would like to feed raw so I look forward to your insights
     
  20. Mastiff

    Mastiff Well-Known Member

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    Some gulper dogs are not suited for a diet with bones that are not gound up. Some people do use meat grinders.
    I would not want to be licked by one of our dogs after they have just eaten. But then I like the smell of a lick after a kibble or canned food meal even less.
    Dogs even been known to choke on raw kibble.
    This is a real active raw feeding group and a good place to read and ask questions:
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/rawfeeding/messages