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Could anyone talk me through raw feeding please?

(30 Posts)
PreMadonna Fri 28-Nov-14 16:26:24

Vet thinks it would stop the BigDog itching.

Where the chuff do I start? He said 'oh it's easy, just get some pheasants from the shoot and hand them over'. I'm not sure I could do that. Would there not be guts and bits all over the kitchen?

ender Fri 28-Nov-14 16:41:57

Loads of ideas about raw feeding, everyone thinks their way is best smile. You need to read all the online info and make up your own mind. The Facebook Raw Feeding group is the best place to start (IMHO) as you'll get ongoing support.
All dogs are different. My lab would have loved a whole pheasant as a first official raw meal as he'd was already used to scavenging dead things, no mess as he'd eat the lot guts, feathers, feet etc. My GSD wouldn't have known it was food so we had to break him in gently with raw chicken legs.

nellieellie Fri 28-Nov-14 17:05:25

I'm a raw food wimp, with restricted freezer space so use a commercial raw minced food - "Nutriment" as a base. It's supposedly "complete" - has bones and veggies in it, so takes off the initial worry. Minced is not as good as the real thing obviously - I supplement with ducks necks, chicken carcasses, chicken wings, turkey necks - most of which you can get from local pet shops (eg Pet's corner) in the freezer compartment, or from the Nutriment supplier. I haven't plucked up the courage to go into butchers yet - I'm vegey and haven't ever been in a butchers as a grown-up. As I'm gaining in confidence I'm using less of the minced and more carcasses. My dog would not have a clue what to do with a dead pheasant - we're always coming across dead rabbits on our walks (lurchers and greyhounds abound) and he just sniffs in a kind of worried way (or am I projecting?) The Facebook group is meant to be v supportive - I've only just got a facebook account so not looked yet. Some raw feeders think all meat & bones is best, others that a percentage of veg is useful. I also sling in the odd raw egg and plain greek yoghurt which some purists would disapprove of. For treats I use air dried ziwipeak, bits of cheese, airdried chicken/duck and bits of nutriment in foil (messy)

tabulahrasa Fri 28-Nov-14 17:57:04

Chicken is usually what people start with, easy to get hold of and least likely to cause stomach problems.

But no, it's not usually messy...they eat it not play with it, lol. In fact it's getting things big enough that they have to actually chew rather than just swallow it whole that means it's better to go for whole things if you can get them.

PreMadonna Fri 28-Nov-14 18:05:32

Do you think it works out vastly more expensive than dried stuff?

JustMe1990 Fri 28-Nov-14 18:16:21

This is what I do...

For a large border collie - one piece of raw bony meat per day eg. Half a chicken or a pack of lamb ribs or pork ribs or bones from morrisons or half a pheasant or guineafowl (m&s and waitrose do them) or two duck legs or a whole fresh fish like a whole mackerel or something.
A teeny weeny chunk of fresh liver, any kind.

Sometimes I grind up some nuts (any kind EXCEPT macadamia and walnut) or some seeds in a pestle and mortar and add them.

She also gets fruit - all types EXCEPT grape, raisin, avocado and Sharon fruit and cooked vegetables.

Once a week give some organ meat like brains, kidney etc.
heart and tripe are classed as 'muscle meats' not organ and liver should be given in small amounts everyday. About 5% of all the food you feed overall.

You start by introducing one type of meat, no liver, for a week then gradually introduce other meats then introduce the offal.

You need to vary the meats otherwise it will be deficient.

It is often cheaper to buy in bulk from raw food suppliers or local butchers, store in the freezer and thaw out what you need each day.

JustMe1990 Fri 28-Nov-14 18:22:53

No onions in the vegetables!
Some say garlic is poisonous too and some feed it everyday, you'll have to make up your own mind on that one.

They can also have probiotic yogurt, cheese, honey and eggs but eggs tend to make my dog loose so I don't tend to feed her them.

youbethemummylion Fri 28-Nov-14 18:28:34

I feed the Natures Menu Mince with a bit of lambs heart, kidney and liver added. Chicken wings, whole Sardines, duck necks, raw eggs. She gets fruits and veg here and there when I'm using them for other things and for treats she gets dried fish skin. We changed to raw to prevent itching daftdog still itches so she's on raw food and steroids! She has typical white dog itchy skin though.

PreMadonna Fri 28-Nov-14 18:57:40

Biggy is also white.

apart from the pink nibbled bits.

PreMadonna Fri 28-Nov-14 18:58:36

I'm going to need a new freezer. And to go into a butchers.

tabulahrasa Fri 28-Nov-14 20:07:12

"Do you think it works out vastly more expensive than dried stuff?"

If you use the easy to get hold of commercial minces like nutriment, yes it's expensive...but there are other suppliers that do them (I haven't checked that facebook link, but I'd imagine they have a list somewhere) and if you can find a butcher who'll do you cheap offcuts and things like heart and chicken carcasses as well it can actually work out cheaper than some dry foods.

I don't raw feed because my dog is a complete PITA, but I tried for a month with him and it was maybe £5 in that month more than what he was on.

youbethemummylion Fri 28-Nov-14 21:15:23

I think feeding a big dog could get expensive but you should only feed 2-3% of their body weight in raw food so if you have a little dog it works out roughly the same.

tabulahrasa Fri 28-Nov-14 22:24:53

It's a big dog I've got, so he's expensive to feed anyway, lol.

It can be done for not much more than some foods fairly easily...but it depends what you're feeding to start with.

mrslaughan Fri 28-Nov-14 22:29:22

I mostly use minced raw from DAF - there are a variety of places that deliver there products. I also get chunks from them. I add some fruit and vegetable, mostly leftovers from kids dinner.
I then add a multi vit and mineral (higher nature), yumega oil ( for his coat) , yumove ( a supplement for good joints etc- this is because ours is a giant and want to protect his joints) and a tree bark powder ( our dogs breed susceptible to stomach upsets).

This may seem complicated, but when i started I thought my head would explode, but you get in the swing of things and it's easy.

mrslaughan Fri 28-Nov-14 22:34:39

Oh and then I get bones from the butchers, he seems to prefer these fresh ��

Then if i am jointing a chicken, I will chop up the body of the chicken, once I have taken most of the meat off, I will chop up the rest of the bone for him. Lots would give that whole , but mine would either not want to attack it, or try a swallow it whole!


PreMadonna Sat 29-Nov-14 08:10:42

Thanks v much.

Off christmas shopping today. Also to source meaty things. grin

PreMadonna Sat 29-Nov-14 08:12:34

Another question. Sorry.

2-3% of body weight. Is that in one meal or 2?

PreMadonna Sat 29-Nov-14 08:13:24

And I think vet said 20% confused

youbethemummylion Sat 29-Nov-14 08:37:35

2-3% of body weight per day you can spread over as many meals as you want. You are trying to achieve about 80% protein 10% offal 10%bone but as long as this is balanced over a week each meal doesn't have to be balanced. Also green tripe despite it being utterly disgusting smelling is like a dog superfood. It has to be green tripe though not the white sort you get at the butchers. Good luck and don't worry it sounds a faff but its was when you get the hang of it.

youbethemummylion Sat 29-Nov-14 08:39:04

Oh and its 2-3% of their ideal bodyweight so as our dog was a but of a chubster we did 2-3% of what weight she should be not what weight she was iyswim.

ender Sat 29-Nov-14 08:41:41

2-3% of body weight is the total amount you give in one day, although this depends on what the dog needs. My v active skinny GSD X gets 4% and my lazy lab gets less than 2%.
Some give it all in one meal as supposedly wild dogs tend to gorge, then have a long gap before they eat again.
I give a small amount in the morning and main meal in the evening.

JustMe1990 Sat 29-Nov-14 09:29:16

Regarding proportions, Where youbethemummylion says '10% offal', that's true, but I am pretty sure that 5% of that needs to be liver.

You can get green tripe from pets at home or jollyes in the freezer section, a block of it is very cheap. I think it's around 70p.

PreMadonna Sat 29-Nov-14 18:39:43

First meal of chicken wings has gone down a treat.

youbethemummylion Sun 30-Nov-14 08:48:58

Great stuff PreMadonna hope it clears up the itching.

LadyTurmoil Sun 30-Nov-14 10:38:47

How old is your dog? the 2-3% guide is for an adult dog, puppies and younger dogs need a higher amount. Please join the FB group mentioned. They have loads of info there - click on what they call Quickstart Guide

Start off with chicken, either pre-prepared mince (eg Nature's Menu sells 400g packs) or wings/carcasses. Tripe is excellent, smells disgusting but you can buy a big bag of frozen pellets and pour straight into dog's bowl. You can add things like heart, liver (offal) but add in small amounts as too much will give them loose poos.

Chicken wings/drumsticks can be found v cheaply in supermarkets, but if you go to a butchers you can ask for carcasses and whatever bits he's got. Sardines/sprats can often be found in supermarkets, also v cheap. Raw egg once or twice a week.

Don't give big weight-bearing bones like a cow's leg. Too dense and can chip teeth. You're aiming for 80% meat, 10% bone and 10% offal - doesn't have to be balanced every days - think of it more as balancing over the week/month. You can tell if you're feeding too much bone, as poos will be white and crumbly.

You don't actually need loads of freezer space. I was feeding 15kg foster dog and could fit in about 10 days food in 1 freezer drawer (mix of 400g blocks and butcher's stuff). After a while, it's quite fun to look for bargains!

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