Raw Feeding Safety Tips
There is much debate over the safety of feeding your dog raw meat. We’ve long been taught that the bacteria in raw meat can be harmful to us, so it’s easy to assume the same for your dogs. Knowing the right way to feed raw will ensure that you and your dog will stay safe. It is additionally helpful to know raw dog food diet how much to feed.
There are bacteria present in raw meat. Scary bacteria like salmonella, E. coli, and listeria can be found in different types of raw meat. Its important to keep this in mind when handling any raw meat.
All raw meat prepared for our pets should be handled with the same caution we use with our own raw meat preparation. Safe food handling practices are a necessity. Wash your hands, utensils, and any surfaces that the meat is prepared with or on. This will prevent the spread of any harmful pathogens to you or anyone else in your home.
A common misconception is that this bacteria will harm our pets when it is ingested. The fact is that your dogs digestive system is designed to handle this level of bacteria. They have an extremely acidic stomach environment that can kill many bacteria and prevent the rest from colonizing their digestive system.
How To Feed Raw Dog Food
Now you know the advantages of feeding raw and how to choose the right type of diet, but just what are you getting yourself into? Choosing the food and feeding the food are two different things. Luckily, stores like Raw Health 4 Dogs make it easy to learn.
I’m not going to lie feeding your dog a raw diet isn’t as simple as throwing kibble into a bowl and walking away. Raw diets require you to be more involved in your dog’s meal prep and eating habits. It’s an investment of both money and time, but if you want the best for your dog, some sacrifices need to be made.
There are a few extra steps involved in feeding raw. Build a consistent routine to help simplify the daily and weekly process of feeding raw food. You’ll see that raw food preparation isn’t as complicated as it sounds.
These helpful tips and best practices can ensure that you are feeding appropriately and that your dog will thrive on its new raw diet.
Macadamia Nuts: Cant Eat
Dogs should never eat macadamia nuts.
Macadamia nuts contain an unknown toxin that may lead to vomiting, muscle weakness, tremors, hyperthermia and depression when dogs consume them, even in small amounts .
Additionally, macadamia nuts have a high fat content, which may elevate your dogs triglyceride levels and potentially lead to pancreatitis.
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Why Choose Raw Food
There are many reasons that convince proponents of the raw food diet that theyre on the right track. They think that a raw diet is a lot more beneficial for dogs.
- Processed food loses its nutrients, according to some theories. It loses a huge part of the essential vitamins and nutrients that animals need. After cooking it, and then adding preservatives, food coloring, and other components, the percentage of real food left in dog food is minimal. Its for this reason that raw food proponents think that feeding dogs with raw pieces of meat and vegetables is the healthier choice.
- Humans are the only animals that can cook their food. Every other species eats it raw. As a matter of fact, if you leave a dog outside he will eat anything that comes his way, cooked or not. Lets not forget that our furry friends are distant relatives of a wild species: Canis lupus .
- Raw food contains beneficial bacteria for the digestive system of a dog. According to raw food proponents, they also contain enzymes and many other nutrients that are favorable to a dogs immune system.
Is Feeding Raw Meat To A Dog Messy
Yes, it certainly can be. Dogs are not very neat when they are eating raw meat. The best place to feed your dog on a raw food diet is your backyard if possible. Other people will have an area in a room with a small tarp on the floor making it easier to clean. Other people will use their garage, an area of an outside deck, or an unused room. Or you can feed your dog in his crate which keeps the mess confined to a smaller area which is easier to clean. This is obviously one of the disadvantages to a raw food diet for dogs. It can get a bit messy and if you feed something like a whole rabbit, you almost certainly dont want that in your house while its being consumed!
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How Do I Transition My Dog From Kibble To Raw
Transitioning your dog from kibble to raw requires at least 12-24 hours of fasting. It will help to clear out the digestive tract of your fido by digesting the leftover food. This act will also aid in a smooth transition from kibbles to a raw diet.
Ensure the provision of a raw meat diet to your furry friend when it is at room temperature rather than in a frosting state.
To attain this purpose, keep the frost raw diet at room temperature for 30 minutes at least.
Is Raw Meat Safe For Dogs
Since dogs evolved from wolves, a lot of people think that wolves diet is the healthiest and most appropriate type of dog diet with minor differences.
A raw diet, however, should be composed of 60 to 80% raw meat but with addition to other elements, such as:
- Fish for protein variety
- Limited amount of berries and fruits dogs have more amylase than wolves, so they can tolerate carbs like fruits
A lot of research and studies have been conducted to assess the nutritious benefits of raw food diets. For example, this study from the University of Illinois tested the benefits of raw food vs. kibble on 8 beagles.
The results came in showing a lot of health benefits, one being that raw food is more digestible than kibbles. But more on the raw food benefits later!
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How Much Raw Food Should I Be Feeding My Dog
For all those pet owners who will start raw feeding their dogs but dont know how much to feed them, Im here to ease their worries.
A raw diet equivalent to 2% to 3% of your dogs body weight split into two meals per day is usually recommended.
For an appropriate estimation, please make some calculations depending upon the body weight of your doggo, and talk with your veterinarian.
Multiply the body weight of your fido in-lbs with different factors to get an exact percentage.
- For inactive dogs = body weight in lb x 0.02
- For dog with average activity = body weight in lb x 0.025
- For active dogs = body weight x 0.03
For a puppy
Puppies need almost 5% of their body weight due to their fast metabolism. It comes up as
For 10lb body weight = 1/4 lb of a raw diet
Make Kibble And Raw Combinations Safer
In a nutshell, all of the risk your dog faces when eating raw foods and starch are the result of the changes to the pH. If you can control the pH, you can do a better job of transitioning your dog to a raw diet without diarrhea, vomiting or obstruction.
And if you want to feed him both kinds of foods, it will reduce his risk of getting sick from bacteria or getting undigested bone lodged in his digestive tract and it will help him get more nutrition out of his meals and avoid the inflammatory and immune responses that can come with undigested foods.
Here are two simple ways to make mixing kibble with raw safer:
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Is There Any Way To Protect Myself And My Family Should I Occasionally Choose To Offer Raw Food To My Dog
The best protection against salmonellosis and listeriosis is to avoid the bugs altogether by not feeding raw food to your dog. Be aware that by feeding raw dog food you can infect yourself and the other people in the household. That said, here are some ways in which you can protect yourself if you handle raw dog food:
- Thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water after handling raw dog food.
- Clean and disinfect all surfaces and objects that come into contact with the raw food. For details about disinfection please see www.cdc.gov/flu/school/cleaning.htm.
- Keep raw food frozen until you are ready to use it, and then thaw it in the refrigerator or microwave .
- Keep raw food separate from other food.
- Cover and refrigerate what your dog does not eat, or discard the leftovers safely.
- Do not kiss your dog on the face or allow him to lick your face, particularly right after he has eaten raw food.
- Wash your hands after petting or being licked by your dog.
A Significant Proportion Of Animal Studies Show Enhanced Circulating And Organ Levels Of Vitamin C In The Presence Of Food
Deficiencies caused by the malabsorption of synthetic vitamins can lead to a damaging effect on cells and normal organ function, so most of the nutrients should be sourced from real foods.
Some commercial raw diets are still fortified with chelated minerals, which are minerals that are paired with an amino acid to improve their digestibility. While we dont often see synthetic additives in Canadian raw foods, many US manufacturers must add them to meet standards set out by the Association of American Feed Control Officials .
This doesnt mean that the foods were deficient in any nutrients, but fortifying the foods not only appeases government standards, it can also act as a buffer for pets that may require higher than average amounts of certain nutrients.
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Including Bones Or Not
Including bones in a raw diet for dogs can provide the nutritional benefit of added calcium and phosphorous, if the bones can be chewed and ingested. They also help maintain dental health by preventing tartar buildup.
However, bones in the diet can also pose health risks, including obstruction of the esophagus and constipation from having too many bone fragments in the colon.2
Metabolism And Weight Gain
Small breeds have a higher metabolic rate. This means that even when sitting still, their bodies burn more calories than a large breed dog. They use calories more efficiently and gain weight more gradually during their puppy stages. This puts less pressure and strain on the hips and joints.
Large breeds have a lot more growing to do, and that extra weight can damage the connective tissues that support their joints. This is why large breed dogs should monitor their calories to prevent gaining too much weight too fast. When calculating feeding guidelines for small and medium breed puppies vs a large breed puppies, the smaller breeds will require a higher percentage of food based on their body weight.
Stick to more conservative feeding guidelines for your large breed to slow growth and prevent early onset joint issues. Dont underfeed but try not to offer more than is needed. This will reduce wear and tear on your dogs connective tissues and bones.
Keep in mind that both large and small breeds can quickly gain too much weight if they are eating too much and not spending enough energy. Make sure that your feeding guidelines suit their activity levels.
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How Much Is Enough Raw Dog Food
Lew Olson, who has a PhD in natural health and canine nutrition, breaks down the canine diet by weight in her book, Raw & Natural Nutrition for Dogs:
100 lb. dog: 2 to 3 lbs. daily, or two meals of 1 to 1.5 lbs. each 75 lb. dog: 1.5 to 2 lbs. daily, or two meals of 12 to 18 oz. each 50 lb. dog: 1 to 1.5 lbs. daily, or two meals of 8 to 12 oz. each 25 lb. dog: 8 to 12 oz. daily, or two meals of 4 to 6 oz. each
In other words, many nutritionists who support raw diets suggest that a dog should eat the equivalent of about 15 percent of her body weight each week.
If youre just starting out with raw food, you may choose to begin by combining homemade fare with a high-quality commercial food. Remember that not every dog thrives on a raw dog food diet. If your dog is immune-compromised, for example, it might not be the way to go. And while most healthy dogs systems can handle many strains of bacteria, good hygiene is still important when handling raw meat. If youre concerned about your dog choking, grinding meat and bones to a hamburger-like consistency can eliminate the risk.
The most important task in this transition is to talk with those who have experience and are up-to-date on the research, read up on nutrition, and keep your holistic vet in the loop throughout the process. Fans of raw feeding believe that even a partial transition will give your dog such a spring in her step that youll be making the switch faster than you can say RMB.
Basic Dog Feeding Guide
The following information is general advice, but as each dog is an individual, seek veterinary advice, particularly if your dog has any special dietary needs or has a reaction to a standard diet.
The basis of your dogs diet should be a high quality balanced premium commercial dog food that is appropriate for their life stage and health status. By reading the label, you can check that it complies with the Australian Standard for the Manufacturing and Marketing of Pet Food AS5812:2017 .
You can also offer some natural foods to provide variety. Natural foods include fresh human-grade raw meat , raw meaty bones and finely-cut vegetables. You should check with your vet first that raw meaty bones are suitable for your particular dog .
We recommend you choose only human-grade raw meat and raw meaty bones because some raw meat products marketed as pet food contain preservatives to keep them looking fresh, but these can be detrimental to the dogs health. There have been many pet food safety incidents linked to sulphite preservative-induced thiamine deficiency, which can be fatal. You should avoid sausages, sausage meat and cooked manufactured meats as they can also contain sulphite preservatives.
The amount of food required will depend on your dogs size, breed, age and level of exercise, but take care not to overfeed or underfeed. Your vet will be able to weigh your dog, assess your dogs body condition score and provide advice.
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Preparing Raw Food For Dogs
Preparing raw food for dogs is a fairly straightforward, but there are a some questions you probably have such as:
- What type of raw food should I feed my dog?
- How much food should I feed at one time?
- Where do I buy raw food for my dog?
- How much is this going to cost me?
- How is the food prepared?
- Is it messy?
- What eating space is required?
- How do I switch my dog from kibble to a raw food diet?
Not to worry. Ill answer all of those questions for you on this page. By the way, if you havent already, I recommend you go back and read Page 1: Raw Food Diet For Dogs before you continue. Another thing to keep in mind is that most dog food review sites will not recommend raw food for dogs. This is because they make money through affiliate marketing and get paid to promote commercial dog food companies.
Is Jerusalem Artichoke Healthy For Dogs
Yes, Jerusalem artichoke is healthy for dogs. The tuber has numerous health benefits for your pet. It consists largely of inulin, multiple sugars that are not digested due to its special structure. This makes Jerusalem artichoke also suitable for dogs with diabetes or overweight, because the inulin contained in the tuber keeps the blood sugar level stable, supports digestion, and regulates the metabolism. In addition, the vitamins and nutrients it contains contribute to the general health of your four-legged friend.
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It Has Unseen Bacteria
Raw meat contains a high level of bacteria from the intestines of animals that have died or been eaten by the retrievers. If you take the raw meat from untrusted sources, it could be contaminated and you would never know it.
Thats why if youre buying your raw meat from an untrusted source, just cook the meat instead of feeding it raw. Yes, you will lose most of the nutritional value of raw meat, but its a lot better than spending a lot of cash for your Golden Retrievers medical expenses.
Purinas Take On Raw Diets For Dogs
While Purinas experts do not recommend feeding a raw meat-based diet, the choice is ultimately yours. We do urge you to speak with your veterinarian prior to choosing a RFD for your dog.
We also offer natural and grain-free dog food if you have concerns about specific ingredients in your dogs food. Every ingredient serves a purpose in our pet food products. You can learn more about our ingredients and their purpose in our food here.
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