New to raw feeding(11 Posts)
Hello, glad to have found this section of the website and hoping for som advice.
I have a little pug who is 9 months old. He has mainly been fed on Royal canin pug junior which was one of the only types of kibble he would eat consistently. At about 4 months his anal glands needed expressing and they have done at least monthly ever since.
I changed him onto Royal canin digestive food about 2 months ago on vets advice, as well as adding in bran flakes for extra fibre after chatting to people on an FB pug page. No difference.
I spoke to his breeder who suggested raw feeding might help. After yet another vet appointment for the anal glands to be expressed today, I picked up some Natures Menu frozen puppy nuggets today and he has had one meal of the raw stuff this evening.
Being completely new to raw feeding I just wondered if anyone has any advice? Can I buy fresh meat from the butchers/supermarket and give that raw? Is there any particular brand you would recommend? When I thawed the food this afternoon there was blood in it - do I drain that?
He also has some pug acne which the vet said could be due to an intolerance to grains and having read through the Natures Menu website I'm hopeful it will help with that too.
Apart from that and the anal gland issue he's perfectly healthy and a happy, energetic pup.
Any advice would be great, thanks
Raw feeding is a great diet for dogs but it has to be done right. You can just get the food from the butchers but you need to make sure that you get the percentage of bone, offal, tripe and muscle meat right (this is essential in the raw fed diet).
Personally I would recommend starting with a complete brand like nitriment or wolf tucker as they will already have the correct percentages worked out and it comes Ina chub that you only have to divide into meal sizes appropriate for your dog size (this is important to work out correctly too and as a rough guide for a nine month old would be about 5% of his weight, but this varies from dog to dog as some a good doers, other not so much). When you defrost you don't need to drain off the blood/fluids - dogs love it.
Start with a single protein (chicken normally) for a few weeks then slowly introduce other meats into the diet. Ultimately your dog will need a large verity of protein.
All bones should be fed raw, try chicken wings to get your dog started on the idea but watch him like a hawk!
Finally I would suggest joining a Facebook group like raw feeding uk as they have a huge amount of files that can answer your every question as well as a great support network for random questing.
Raw, non weight bearing chicken/duck bones are great for dogs. Wings, necks, carcasses with the legs removed. I feed them frozen so they're more of a challenge to eat.
I buy my dogs' main meals from 'I Love It' and then other bits and bobs from supermarket (chicken wings) or pet shop. On Friday mine had frozen halves of a lambs head each for their main meal.
Chicken bones are perfectly fine for dogs as long as they're raw and non weight bearing!
I wouldn't give mine a chicken drumstick however I feed her chicken wings.
As long as you get the percentage right just like Thewolf said you'll be fine. It sounds more confusing than what it is and honestly after a few weeks it'll be as if you've always done it. You can usually tell by their poo whether or not you're doing it right - if it's sloppy or runny then they're not getting enough bone. If it's too hard and crumbly then there's too much bone.
Agree with the suggestion to begin with the 'prepared' raw food, if only to reassure yourself that your dog is getting the correct nutritional balance. We feed Nutriment to ours - the younger dog has only ever been fed raw (Nutriment do a puppy formula). It's easy, not as 'messy' as dealing with chicken carcasses, etc, plus it evens out any imbalances in bone, offal etc. It's also easier if you go away to take a couple of packs rather than hawking round defrosting bonesWe also feed mince we get from the butcher (basically all the trimmings and offal) for dogs, chicken carcasses most evenings, raw green tripe once a week (be very afraid - it is the worst smelling thing ever!) and raw fish every couple of weeks. We also have a standby of tinned sardines for if we forget to take anything out of the freezer. Chicken wings from the supermarket are good - we started our older dog with wings, and held them for her at first so she learned to crunch them, not try to swallow them whole.
You need to be a bit careful when transitioning from kibble to raw, and be prepared for some potentially alarming changes in poo! But this should settle down pretty quickly and isn't anything to worry about unless it goes on for a long time. But I can't speak highly enough about a raw diet - our dogs are incredibly healthy and have amazing coats. I know a few people who changed to raw because their dogs had skin conditions, and these cleared up almost straight away. There's lots of advice and information on (reputable) websites about how to feed raw or BARF - but I personally don't think it's an absolute science. Some vets are quite anti raw feeding but equally some are quite pro. It's often to do with the dangers of dogs swallowing large bones - but again, the bone-in mince gets round any fears and our vet (not generally in favour) thinks the Nutriment food is really good. Disclaimer: I have no connection with Nutriment!
I made a mistake in my previous post, I buy the dog food from 'They Love It' not 'I Love It'. Just to clarify, I have not now nor in the past ever loved raw minced meat/chicken feet/gizzards etc.
This is a very good website. Look at the Quickstart guide.
Raw Feeding UK is a good FB group but there are others. Also, if you search raw feeding in Mumsnet you'll get a lot of previous threads which have discussed this.
Easy to start with prepared packs. Go light on pork as not all dogs like it. Easy on the offal too, as liquid poops will result. When you get a bit more confident, it's fun to buy your own and mix. Easy to put several portions in the fridge or freezer. Supplement with eggs, green tripe,
salmon oil etc. Pets@home do frozen tripe pellets and you can feed it frozen (less stinky). Don't worry about balancing every day. Think of it as balancing meat/bone/offal over, say, 10 days.
Too much bone = white, chalky poo, too much offal = dark, loose poo so very easy to see if the mix is a bit wrong!
Also, if you're worried about mess, feed outside if you have that space. It will be eaten very quickly!
I bow with reverence and admiration to all your so so expertise
Ignore the muppet who clearly knows nothing about raw feeding.
Please thoroughly research raw feeding first - you absolutely must have the correct meat:bone ratio. I've been raw feeding for nearly 20 years now and there is still a lot to learn.
Raw chicken wings and carcasses are fantastic to begin with. Breast of lamb is also good. Beef bones are very brittle so I avoid them unless it's a fresh marrow bone for recreational chewing and not as a meal. Pigs trotters are excellent too. I feed fresh whole herring or mackerel but mine also love tinned pilchards, especially the ones in tomato sauce. Any fruit or veg given should be thoroughly blended. Dogs in the wild wouldn't eat fruit or veg naturally - they'd only get it from the stomach contents of their prey, so the cellulose must be broken down. A raw carrot etc is fine as a treat though! I give a dried kelp supplement once a week mixed with natural yoghurt, cottage cheese, a drizzle of honey and some garlic as a natural flea repellent.
If you're lucky, you might be able to get chicken carcass free if you have a slaughterhouse or meat processing plant locally. It used to cost me about £5 a month to feed four large breed dogs until I moved house.
My pug was weaned onto raw food. He's 8 now and could not be healthier. It really is the best diet for a dog.
Another vote here for raw feeding. I have a 35kg dog that costs me £12 a week in ready prepared raw minces. It would be cheaper if I was a bit less squeamish. Mine isn't keen on chicken but loves turkey, rabbit and beef. I did give him racks of ribs until I found him burying them inside my teenagers divan bed. Clearly they were highly prized treats that needed to be saved!
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