BARF/RAW feeding - those who do it, will you give me some tips please?(20 Posts)
We've just started feeding BARF to our 2yo black lab bitch. She is LOVING it but I feel like I'm floundering a bit.
At the moment she has around 250g of chicken wings/pieces, pork chop or mince and about 30g of liver a day. Plus a whole raw egg for breakfast.
I want to ask the butcher if I can have a load of his 'leftovers' for her but what sort of things should I be asking for? Heart? Offal? Carcasses? Necks? Will anything except the big marrow bones do?
I'm so confused about the ration of meat to bone - everything I read seems to have different ideas. How much bone does she need and how much flesh?
Vegetables - yes or no? Can they be cooked or do they need to be raw?
Do I split it between 2 meals or is she okay just to have one?
If you can be bothered to type out a typical week's meals I'd be forever grateful!
She's 25kg, btw and has an hour's off lead walk and 2 20 minute on-lead walks a day.
Oh, and supplements - cider vinegar/yogurt/olive oil/sea kelp - are they necessary or if I happen to have some leftover yogurt can I chuck some in her bowl?
I've read so much stuff about it all I am completely overthinking it and making it way more complicated than I suspect it needs to be!
My dog has the Natural Instinct pouches, just had a look at the lamb pouch and it contains, lamb,lamb bone, heart,carrot,butternut squash,yeast,cod liver oil, flaxseed oil and kelp!
My vet is very keen on the BARF diet and this is my half way house attempt at it. Oddly enough one of my other pets was at a different vet and he wasn't so keen on it as he said he had seen a number of dogs with damaged teeth from bone fragments.
Not much help to you sorry!
How expensive are the pre-packaged foods? I don't think I'd do it all the time but when she stays with MIL it might be a good halfway house - I don't know how keen she'd be to have pig trachea and the like in her fridge .
Also, where's the best place to buy them?
Feed around 2-3% of your dog's ideal adult weight daily, split between however many meals you feel necessary. If the dog gains weight, lower the amount; if it loses, increase the amount.
The diet should be 80% meat, up to 10% edible bone and 10% organ of which half
should be liver. We aim for a balance over time, not every meal, every day or
even every week. Edible bone is always contained in big chunks of meat and not
fed bare. Bones which are not edible are all beef bones and leg bones of other
largish animals (birds are OK). No vegetables, fruit, grains or supplements are
required although some people choose to give them.
Don't give too much variety to start with. Most people start with chicken,bone-in breasts or quarters. Really it's any meat you can get on whatever your budget
is. Don't add organ meat until he's really used to the diet. Too much organ meat (or even too much variety) too soon can cause loose stools.
Try to feed 'big' - a chunk of something that he has to work at to eat, normally
bigger than his head. This prevent him just gulping it down and means he is more satisfied at the end. However, at a pinch Asda cheap mince is absolutely fine!
You can even feed frozen if you forget to get the meat out of the freezer - lots
of dogs really enjoy it this way, although a few won't touch it until it thaws.
Have a look at landywoods website for ideas of meat you can feed www.landywoods.co.uk/here
I think they are about £3.99 a pack, I get mine from my vet, try www.naturalinstinct.com
This is a really stupid question I'm sure but what sort of meat is 'meaty bones' and what is just meat? She's into chicken wings/legs but is there too much bone to meat ratio for that to make up a significant part of her diet? I've been adding beef mince as well as 30g liver (so 10% of total meal) but the bulk is chicken bones.
I can't recommend this groups enough and they will not mind you asking any number of questions. If you can look at the files section of the group before becoming a memember you will see loads of useful articles. Welcome to the world of clean smelling dogs with glossy coats and gleaming teeth!
At first be really careful and do not feed too much bone as the dog has to get used to it. Too much can cause really bad constipation so watch your dog carefully.
I would give one meal of meaty bones chicken wings, neck, ribs etc and then minced meat in the other meal to start with.
Thank you for that link and all the tips, I've applied to join .
I only just spotted this. How's the raw feeding going with Mabel?
Elsie luuuuuurves her raw meat. This week I am biting the bullet and am going to try her with some whole sardines I bought in Lidl for a bobby bargain.
We must meet up and do a Delamere walk with the dogs.
I am thinking of starting the BARF feeding for my 17 week old Labrador x Rough Collie, as she doesn't seem to be doing great on the Spillers Puppy kibble (loose stools and dandruff in her coat).
I have estimated her adult weight should be 30kg -ish, so is it right that I will only feed her 90g of food a day (3% of expected bodyweight)?
If I split this into the three meals she currently has it's only 30g per meal? This seems to be a small amount of food?
Should I feed chicken carcass/wings in the morning, then chicken mince at lunch and teatime to start? Will that provide enough bone?
Will she need anything else?
(I am planning to increase the variety of meats and include liver/offal once she has adjusted to the new diet)
Do I need to feed any form of biscuit? Or do I avoid grains altogether?
Aargh I'm sure I'm making this harder than it needs to be!
If you've got this far, thank you and please feel free to add anything/adapt what I've written to improve the above, I'm keen to get this right, I'm a worrier by nature - can you tell
Understand completely about being a worrier/over thinker. We've been doing it for a while now - I think we're not experts but it's made such a difference to one of our dogs who had a very sensitive tum. First big tip - we got a midi chest freezer for the garage. That way, you can take advantage of internet ordering or even bulk purchasing from your local butcher. We get a variety of stuff. We've tried the Bazil's sausages - great but a bit pricey for us as we have three large dogs link here.
At the moment, we feed a mix of the Prize Choice/AMP with assorted other bits such as tripe, chicken, oily fish (sardines/pilchards) and occasional leftover rice or pasta, with the odd bit of roasted veggies such as pumpkin or squash. Liver as a treat about once a week. They also get bones occasionally from our butcher. It seems to be working well. Dogs are all healthy and happy. They get treats/training nibbles such as mini Bonio biscuits, pigs ears, and the liver treats. Odd bits of cheese, etc.
With the quantities, I wouldn't get too hung up on what guidelines say - let your dog's condition be your guide. If overweight, cut down a bit. If under, increase. I think the key also is to ensure plenty of variety - dog is not bored and you are covering more bases nutritionally. The Basil's offers a very easy, painfree way to get into it, or is perfect for when on holiday etc when you don't want to be faffing about. I found their customer service/delivery very smooth too. There are plenty of other companies out there too offering similar.
Scuttlebutter (that's not rude like dragonbutter is it?!)
Anyway, I digress, thank you for your reply, I have just been looking at freezers on preloved funnily enough!
Think I will just have to 'wing it' as they say, what's the worst that can happen?
NO!!! Certainly not. I've never actually googled the phrase dragon... but I keep reading about it and don't think I want to.
It's a derivation of Scuttlebutt - an archaic term for gossip or chat, which seemed appropriate for an internet forum.
Worst thing - well, we had a phase when pieces of tripe were being lovingly stashed under our pillows by a grund who was secreting them for later consumption. That kept us on our toes when we were going to bed. And treading on a piece of heart - not so nice.
Glad to hear it - as the name said - never google it - eww is all I have to say!
You're not helping persuade me with the tripe info either, although hound currently eats al fresco, so it will blend with the half-eaten mice, and small piles of unidentified insides the cats leave as 'presents' for me nice.
1973magpie - 3% of 30kg (30,000g) is 900g - you would starve your poor boy on just 90g of food a day!!!!
I feed raw but get 1lb packs of meat from a local shop, they do a variety, I also try to give bones, chicken wings, turkey necks once a week, a few raww eggs, some sardines. I think I need to introduce some veg (they have quite a bot of green tripe) as dog1 seems a bit constipated.
oh and they barely ever tump which is a mjor bonus, I was really worried introducing barf to 8 week old pup but after dealing with his iams digestion for a week I jumped straight in.
I get really confused with the weight. I feed dog1, a border terrier, 1/3 of 1lb a day, she has neither lost or gained weight and been on this for nearly a year now so obviously enough.
Its the puppy I struggle to work out, he is currently 6.7kgs and I give him 2/3 of a pack of meat (as ell as one meal of fish 4 dogs in the morning) I get really confused trying to convert lb's to kg, to grams.
Anyway I would recommend it to anyone, lots of people on here get their supplies in line, would be worth checking out if there is any one local that sells stuff, otherwise make friends with the butcher, I often go in and get a bag of bones chopped up for 50p.
feesh Thank you - I thought it sounded like very little food... maths has never been my strong point...
As I have a range of 22-32 kg ish for her adult weight I've got a bit of leeway, but she would definitely have been unhappy with 90g/day! Thanks for the help
dita I've been in to see my butcher today and I can get chicken carcasses for 20-30p each - is that cheap or not? I've got to go back Weds because apparently 'that's a good day for carcasses'...?! (not so good for the chickens I fear).
I think I might need another freezer now though - DH rolling eyes at yet more 'dog-related' expense
i use berriewoodwholesale.co.uk to stock up the freezer when i cant get to the butchers.
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