I just started Sarge on a Raw Diet on Sunday and I wanted to get some advice in if I am going about it the right way.
I knew he was going to like this before we really got started. I went to the store and bought some chicken quarter legs and was cutting it up and turned my back for a second and he grabbed it off the cutting boards ..lol.
He was a little skinny and was around 84 lbs last time I weighed him so I determined his ideal weight to be 90 lbs. He is a couch potato during the day but has 3 kids to play with in the evening and goes for several walks when they get home from school, each one takes him on a separate walk. He also plays fetch and frisbee when the weather is warmer.
I have been feeding him 3 lbs per day. 1.5 lbs of ground beef in the morning and 1.5 lbs of chicken quarters in the evening. If it is short when I weigh it out, I throw in chicken gizzards and hearts to make up the weight. My mother in law is home with him during the day and she said he was acting hungry so I made up .25 lb bags of gizzards and hearts for a mid-day snack.
Since we have started, he doesn't do his OCD spin as much, he seems more happy and playful (he pawed at me the other day until I scratched his belly, he's never done that), his skin is not as dry and his coat looks much better. He's also gained some weight and just looks more bulky, not a significant weight gain but just looks better. I am going to take him to petsmart tonight to weigh him.
Is there anything I am doing wrong, do my portions seems right? Any other suggestions?
It depends on Sarge's activity level. 3 pounds seems like a little much to me but it may not be if he's a really active dog with high metabolism.
I use Lauri's Guide as a jumping off point - it's spot on for my muttpuppy, but I think my GSDs metabolism is a bit slower so I have to feed her quite a bit less than the calculations I get with Lauri's formula.
How Much to Feed
My GSD was severely underweight when we rescued her at 2 years old. She originally weighed in at 59 pounds after giving birth to a litter of pups - you could see her ribs, it was heartbreaking. We got her weight up to around 90 pounds feeding about 26-28 ounces a day...90 pounds turned out to be much for her so we then worked to take some of that weight off. Now she eats around 22 ounces a day and has leveled out between 75-80 pounds and looks great and has tons of energy.
She gets between 9-11 ounces of raw meaty bones (usually turkey necks or chicken backs - really cheap by the 30 pound case at the butcher) and between 9-11 ounces of a muscle and organ meat mix I get through a raw feeders coop.
You definitely need to add some organ to your mix, specifically a secreting organ - like a liver or kidney (gizzards and heart are considered muscle meat). If I wasn't feeding a muscle and organ mix, I'd reduce my muscle meat by 2-4 ounces and feed 2-4 ounces of secreting organ each day.
I also supplement salmon oil - although we recently got a fish monger who sells fish heads and bits for next to nothing so I may switch to that if my muttpuppy can figure out that he needs to eat the fish head and not play with it (my GSD is smart as a whip and has that part figured out!).
Good luck!! Looks like you're doing a great job.
What I have been told is that once they are grown you feed them 2 - 2 1/2 % of body weight pending on how active they are.
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I would say that 3lbs is slightly much. I would start with 2.5 and then after a month see where he is.
5% OM and 1/2 should be liver/kidney
Remember that OM should be fed with RMB as OM make loose stool and RMB hardens it up.
I feed MM in the AM with salmon oil and coconut oil. In the PM i feed OM and RMB. My pup is 12 weeks old and is doing great on it.
My staples right now are chicken quarters, wings, breast meat, leg meat, chick liver and tripe. Also I may add some ground beef on the weekends when i know he'll be working more.
Ok, I recalculated based on the suggestions given, which eased my mind because at 3lbs, it was going to be expensive.
I bought chicken livers tonight and began giving him Wild Salmon Oil.
Sorry, has those flipped.
It's been just over a month since we started. He's gained 2-3lbs and he is much more muscular and his coat is gorgeous. He loves his food and I think he is thriving,
My wife walked him over to the lady who we got him from a year ago and if not for his docked tail, she would not have recognized him.
I've been feeding him at 2.5 lbs per day but since the weather is getting nicer, he is actually walking a couple of miles each night with my wife so I may bump him up a little.
His skin infection is gone though he is still a little itchy but he doesn't smell and his ear infection is gone. I went to clean his ears and nothing came out, this was a big issue for him. So glad I started this.
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