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Discussion Starter #1
He's 5 months old and I want to start to get him on a RAW diet. He's currently eating the Blue Buffalo brand dry food. He's starting to lose he's baby teeth. So my question is how so I transition and what do I start with and how much for it?


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My personal opinions:

Cold turkey switch him, no need to transition. If you absolutely must, want to get rid of whatever's left over of the Blue/etc, start with one meal a day kibble one meal raw, but not necessary at all.

Start with one protein and stick with it for the first couple of weeks- keep it bland. Most people recommend chicken because its cheap and most dogs do well on it, but truthfully it doesn't matter (I started Ridley on beef). Pick cuts with mostly meat, and some bone. Chicken thighs/leg quarters are great transitioners. Make sure you don't pick TOO boney of a cut, IE I prefer to stay away from chicken necks/backs unless you are cutting in extra boneless. Don't include organs until the 2nd or 3rd week when you have a better idea of how your puppy is handling whatever meat you start with.

Feed ~2% of what you anticipate his adult wight to be. If you don't know what his adult weight will be, no clue of parents size/etc, then start with 10% of his current weight.

I find when first switching its better to include some extra fiber like canned pumpkin or sweet potatoes. Reduces the likelihood of the squirts and the dogs generally like the taste. Usually you can wean off of it by the first week.

Here is an absolutely fantastic spreadsheet that breaks everything down for you:
http://www.netrophic.com/misc/NewPersonalDogFeedingGuide.xls
Its obviously catered towards adult dogs, but you can easily adjust the numbers to whatever you are needing.
 

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Yea, what he said......

Further, I have six months of research on this very thing, four months in practice, and seen the results of the last few years of dogs with two Working Dog Breeders... I have tried to impart that information, as best as I can, here on the Forum in this Section...

Because of my input I think they even started this new Category. It is not about me, it is about healthy pups and having them live well into their high teens or even 20 without dying of cancer or joint displasia diseases like many suffer with. It saved my 10 year old... And in the RAW/BARF section of the Adult dog feeding Category there is a Testimonial on my 10 year old... (I have 4)

So, you want Tips on this? Have a read of most of what is in this section and you will be well on track... Yea, cold turkey change, your pup will think it is a treat anyway. Chicken is easy, beef is good, lamb a bit fatty, anyway give him some bone with it for the calcium intake. I am probably a bit lucky as here in Australia my little 30 acre home block is host to a small herd of organic grass fed beef. One is quartered and in the cold room right now, to be cut up in about 10 days of aging...

It is all here for you, your pup will thank you... My input is without any reward, simply for the love of the GSDs... :wub:

lone Ranger in Australia, out on the Last Frontier with horses,
doing "Dances with Wolves" as well as possible....
 

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If you absolutely must, want to get rid of whatever's left over of the Blue/etc, start with one meal a day kibble one meal raw, but not necessary at all.
atravis, I read that you don't want to mix kibble and raw as the dogs digest and metabolize the two differently and it can be upsetting to their stomach. That said, I'm ignorant to what "mixing" means, whether it's the same meal or same day. Have you heard/read of anything about that?
 

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atravis, I read that you don't want to mix kibble and raw as the dogs digest and metabolize the two differently and it can be upsetting to their stomach. That said, I'm ignorant to what "mixing" means, whether it's the same meal or same day. Have you heard/read of anything about that?
Yea, what he said.. In my early days of experimenting, I did a 50/50 mix. The raw came out in soft black sausages, but the kibble was runny. The bulk of the kibble takes longer to metabolize so I do not think you can mix them in one meal...;) On Raw, they eat less bulk, and less comes out the other end, as most of the kibble is useless and harmful bulk. But it does not digest at the same rate from my experimenting, so a mix does not work...

I mean it might, say with 3/4 or 4/5 minced beef or chicken, if you did not have enough and add in a small amount of mixed some puppy chow like I did with some success.... But I gave up and converted over completely to Raw. I would not do it unless you just messed up and did not have enough with you on the road or something. I have just learned to run hot water in a laundry tub, and defrost some more out of the freezer in six inches of hot water in the SS tub.. Works well. Good luck and enjoy your pup. 10% bone, 80 % MMeat, 10% organ meat. seems to be the best.. Beef, chicken, lamb, maybe a little fish... I just bought out a dozen large cans of Tuna in olive oil that was on special, might give that a try for a diet break.... Not really raw, but a treat.. If not it will go well for me in a pinch... heh he ;)

Hope I have been a help..
 

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atravis, I read that you don't want to mix kibble and raw as the dogs digest and metabolize the two differently and it can be upsetting to their stomach. That said, I'm ignorant to what "mixing" means, whether it's the same meal or same day. Have you heard/read of anything about that?
Generally most people break the meals apart (as in one meal all raw, one meal just kibble), because mixing CAN cause some upset.

That said, I've mixed both together plenty of times and never had a problem with any of my dogs. I really just think it depends on the individual- even when on kibble I could switch brands/flavors/etc bag by bag, never transitioned, and never had a problem. I know there are plenty of dogs that would be torn up by that, though.
 

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You can try a dehydrated raw, like The Honest Kitchen and I know there are other brands out there. It's pretty simple for you, you just add water and let it sit 5-10 minutes.

Our dog had no reactions to switching to this, only improvement in her GI health and coat. There are also prepared raw brands that are frozen. They usually come in patties or 1oz squares. You can buy a small bag and see how your dog tolerates it.
 

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Lauri has a ton of information on her site about raw feeding. I recommend doing some reading there to start.

Welcome to the Raw Dog Ranch
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks everyone I looked into it some and I actually ended up going to a Natural Food for Dogs place in my town and they are all for RAW diets so the lady in there talked all about it and informed me 120%


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They woman I spoke to yesterday recommended buying chicken necks, is that okay to feed it to him raw? Or do they need to be cooked


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DO NOT COOK THEM! Yes, raw chicken necks are fine and are a staple of many dogs' raw diets. But cooking them can cause the bone to splinter.
 

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Check out the Raw Dog Ranch site that someone posted a few posts back. That will give you an idea of how much to feed, the ratios of bone, meat, and organ meat, etc. For example, since chicken necks are pretty boney- I only feed my dog one per day (he only gets 16oz total meat per day). You can easily tell by their poop if they'd had too much or too little bone.
 

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Check out the Raw Dog Ranch site that someone posted a few posts back. That will give you an idea of how much to feed, the ratios of bone, meat, and organ meat, etc. For example, since chicken necks are pretty boney- I only feed my dog one per day (he only gets 16oz total meat per day). You can easily tell by their poop if they'd had too much or too little bone.
Really? That's crazy the lady at the all nature food store for dogs told me to give him about 10 necks a day with 2 cups of beef blend. She said I could do it however. either 10 necks in one feeding and 2 cups of beed bled in another feeding or 5 necks and 1 cup. But you're saying you only feed your dog one neck a day.... I'm even wondering if hes going to have a hard time eating the necks since his losing his baby teeth.
 

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Again, necks are far too high in bone to feed alone, at least IMO.

I would be cutting with boneless, for a growing pup I would try not to be excessive with the bone intake.
 

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Blahhh its just all so confusing :( I really wanted to start him on the RAW diet tonight but I'm going to wait until tomorrow maybe and look more into it. Because I'm not sure now what to do with the necks and beef blend.
 

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Ok, take deeeeep breath. :) Raw feeding is not hard but you do have to do some figuring.

First off, you never by NUMBERS of things. You feed by the WEIGHT of things.

First thing you need to know is his weight. Since he's 5 months old and still growing I would recommend starting at about 4% of his current weight. That is the total amount (in WEIGHT) of what you will feed each day.

So, here's the figuring part:
Dogs weight * 5% = total weight of food each day
For example, let's say your dog weighs 50 lbs. THIS IS JUST AN EXAMPLE.
50 lbs * 5% = 2.5 lbs of food per day
Now, you need to take that amount and divide it up by the different TYPE of food you will be feeding - RMB (Raw Meaty Bones), MM (Muscle Meat = meat without bone) and OM (Organ Meat - like liver or kidney).

Here's what I recommend: 50% RMB, 45 % MM and 5% OM

So, using the EXAMPLE above here's what that breakdown would be:
2.5 lbs * 50% = 1.25 lbs (that's 1 lb and 4 ounces) of RMBs
2.5 lbs * 45% = 1.125 lbs (that's 1 lb 2 ounces) of MM
2.5 lbs * 5% = .125 lbs (that's 2 ounces) of OM
So now you just have to replace YOUR dog's weight in the figuring and go from there.
 

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Ok, take deeeeep breath. :) Raw feeding is not hard but you do have to do some figuring.

First off, you never by NUMBERS of things. You feed by the WEIGHT of things.

First thing you need to know is his weight. Since he's 5 months old and still growing I would recommend starting at about 4% of his current weight. That is the total amount (in WEIGHT) of what you will feed each day.

So, here's the figuring part:
Dogs weight * 5% = total weight of food each day
For example, let's say your dog weighs 50 lbs. THIS IS JUST AN EXAMPLE.
50 lbs * 5% = 2.5 lbs of food per day
Now, you need to take that amount and divide it up by the different TYPE of food you will be feeding - RMB (Raw Meaty Bones), MM (Muscle Meat = meat without bone) and OM (Organ Meat - like liver or kidney).

Here's what I recommend: 50% RMB, 45 % MM and 5% OM

So, using the EXAMPLE above here's what that breakdown would be:
2.5 lbs * 50% = 1.25 lbs (that's 1 lb and 4 ounces) of RMBs
2.5 lbs * 45% = 1.125 lbs (that's 1 lb 2 ounces) of MM
2.5 lbs * 5% = .125 lbs (that's 2 ounces) of OM
So now you just have to replace YOUR dog's weight in the figuring and go from there.
Okay so he is 48 pounds now. So It came out to 2.4 lbs. Now my question is. I have a bag of chicken necks and ground beef. So the chicken necks would count for the RMBs? And Ground beef would count for the the MM? And what would I have to feed him for the OM?
 
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