Looking to start ...RAW/BARF (Maybe)
So we are on Day 2 of Draven barely eating his Origin food, generally get got 3 cups morning and night (5am / 5pm) a raw meatball, some yogurt, pumpkin, condriton (spelling?) Cottage cheese, yogurt
It started with the yogurt he wouldn't eat his kibble that touched the yogurt, then it was pumpkin, he still seems to like cottage cheese. We took some advice about using wet food and water to make a gravy and pour it over the kibble and that seemed to work for awhile.
But about two weeks ago he started to find his poo pretty fascinating and if we don't watch him like a hawk he makes a meal out of it. And he's eaten less and less kibble. (But still eats his meatball no problem) if I toss a Marrow bone down he'll gnaw on that for hours.
So I'm not saying I'm completely in on the raw feeding... because if I had to go away and leave the dog somewhere I think I'd be hard pressed to find a place that will do raw feeding.
But lets just say I'm starting to think maybe we can augment his food with more raw qualities.
I started using left overs from our meals (mainly green veggies) and adding them to the kibble.
But I need a HUGE introduction to this method of feeding, and I'm going to have to do some homework to see if its affordable or not because my wife and I are pretty tight budget.
I'm going through the stickies here, but there are lots of acronyms that I'm sure RAW people are familiar with but make no sense to me.
In the end I just want Draven happy and healthy, and he seems ... less active than before... at first I thought it was some maturity (He could settle down easier and just sleep at my feet) but now I'm wondering if he just doesn't have energy.
He still eats (1-3 cups a day where it was 6) and he still plays hard and runs around but in the house he has a tendancy to go to "his" spot by the door and "plop" down. He sighs and whines but he's always been a baby that way.
Anyway I'm not saying I'm sold on it yet, but I'm not as opposed to it as I was originally.
Okay so I did more reading getting to know some of these acronyms (Pretty silly people write "FAQS FOR BARF Beginners" then start in with Acronyms they never bother to explain (Thankfully someone on this site did)"
Draven is 7months (26th of Feb) and weight last time we weighed him 66pounds. (Been a month or two since we weighed him so we'll weigh him again)
But I'm curious ... what do you people do if you have to leave for long periods of time.
For example... if you had to board your dog for a week due to a death in the family that you had to travel for. With Kibble its easy any place will feed your dog kibble in the amounts you provide.
But RAW seems like other people wouldn't really be in for that.
Still not sold on feeding my dog RMB as chicken... I get people say Chicken bones are fine they have fed their dog chicken bones for 20 years. But I know a couple of people who have fed their dog Rawhide for over 20 years and never had problems too..but lots of people have.
Its definitely not an easy switch hats off to people who pull it off.
Holy boggling amounts of information ... too much to comprehend at this point... lol you'd think feeding "Natural" wouldn't require so much work....:p
I am having the same problems with the raw diet. I am thinking about switching over but am unsure how to start.
I see post that say I have to start with one protein a week. Ok but then I see where people say you have to feed a variety of protein. So if I just feed her only chicken for a week, will that make her sick? Will she not get all the nutrition she needs until after a few weeks of adding diffrent meats?
Can I just throw her a chicken brest and thats all? or what do i need to mix in for the first week? Pumpkin yogurt ? I am confused on the step by step of actually switching over. It does sound like a great diet but I dont want to mess up and make her sick when I switch her.
We went through same thing, my boy was always funny about his food, i wouldn't say picky but probably close, i was worry a lot about how much he eats as puppy, he always left food behine. So i started same like you add some raw meat, anyway he is on raw almost year now and doing great, takes some work in begining and it is not the cheapest of methods,but to me it is worthed.
Well like I said before I think 6 cups of Orijen a day is WAY to much... My 6 month old only eats 3 cups a day and is right on track with his weight for his age. If the vets trying to get you to feed 6 cups still he's probably just used to the lower quality kibble...
If he still seems picky about what he does eat you could try switching to a different brand of food or flavor, I think 7 months is plenty old enough for adult food(I don't really think puppies NEED puppy food, I think it's just a marketing ploy but that's my opinion). I switch my dogs kibble around frequently anyways to different protein sources, it can help to prevent allergies.
I don't feed an all RAW diet because my husband is against it and we have no where to put another freezer... I think it probably seems a lot more overwhelming then it is... I researched about it too and my eyes crossed several times. :p But there are some very knowledgeable people here who could help you out.
If you can't do RAW, maybe look into honest kitchen... A lot of pet stores will have sample packs to try, some dogs don't like the consistency but my dogs go crazy for it... There's also an honest kitchen formula that has most of the nutrients they need you just have to add meat to it possibly simpler then going full RAW.
I was also going to suggest HK as Carriesue did.
The PREFERENCE is a GREAT way to be able to feed partial raw without a lot of hassle of finding people to co-op with to save $$$ and getting a separate freezer. HK are all human grade dehydrated ingredients. A pup would get a mix of 50% Preference and 50% raw. No need to add a vitamin/mineral supplement....it's all in there. Using ground meat is the easiest. You can get Jennie O ground turkey and ground round/chuck when your grocery store has them on sale which will take up less room if you have a small freezer. It would be great to add Krill oil several times per week and Coconut oil every day, but a personal decision. I also think your boy needs enzymes (I'll explain in the pm later). Then, if you need to go away, just use one of the other Honest Kitchen complete with meat products that the care-giver would mix with water.
Easy-Pezy....and he would still be getting raw meat! Add some recreation bones during the week too! :)
I'd also love to start raw but have no idea how to, even with all of the threads on here, they confuse me worse
I would suggest taking a look at Laurie's website (she is on here somewhere)...Raw Feeding
Anyway, it is suggested to start with one protein to ensure there are no allergies and to not overwhelm your dog's stomach. Over time, you add in other protein sources one at a time to gain the variety. Once the dog has been on raw for a while and you know what they can/will eat, then you can mix protein sources no problem. In fact it is best to get about 5 different protein sources over time to ensure a good variety of nutrients. It's also important to remember that they don't need everything with each meal. It's balance over time, which makes it easier to prepare meals.
I feed the prey model of 50% MM, 45% RMB, and 5% OM.
MM = muscle meat, and is any meat that does not have bone and is not an organ (chicken breast, beef roast, etc). Heart is considered muscle meat.
RMB = raw meaty bone, and is anything that has a bone (chicken leg, quarter, necks, chicken backs, etc). Obviously the amount of bone will vary depending on what animal or part it comes from, but just test and see what your dog does well on. Also, recreational bones (really hard bones that don't really break down) are not RMB, they are not actually part of the diet - just a fun time for your dog.
OM = organ meat, anything that is organ (kidney, liver, spleen, etc.)
I would also suggest starting out with buying from the local grocery store. That way you don't buy a huge amount of goat meat and then find out your dog is allergic or doesn't like it.
I actually did a day of research and drove around to every grocery store near my and now use the ethnic grocery stores for the majority of Bella's meat. They tend to have better prices and more variety.
The key is to start, and learn as you go. As Carriesue said, it seems way more overwhelming than it is.
The last thing I will say is to try and get some green tripe. It is great for dogs and has great nutrition. The only problem is that you have to find a source. It is not the white stuff you find in grocery stores, that has been cleaned and bleached and has almost no nutritional value. The good stuff is raw and smells like a barn.
Feel free to ask specific questions as they come up. I, or someone else, will do our best to answer you.
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