Raw Feeding Primer

I hope that what follows is not a recipe plan but rather an outline of what I have learned in my years of study and observation.  This is the way I choose to feed my dogs. I don’t know if it is the right way, nor does anyone else. I certainly do not advocate this as the only way to raw feed, nor would I condemn people who choose to feed differently. As you will learn, there really are only a few hard and fast rules in nutrition and unfortunately, the more you learn, the more you discover that you really don’t know much at all. So you roll with the punches and do the best you can with the knowledge you have at the time.

My method of feeding is not easily categorized into one of the currently popular groups (such as prey model, Bones and Raw Food, or Biologically Appropriate Raw Food, etc.). If I had to label my diet, I would call it ‘My Best Guess Based On Experience And Research’. In time, you will come up with your own “Best Guess Based on Experience Diet’ but in the meantime, here are some tips to help you along the way.

RAW FEEDING GUIDELINES

The key points to remember with a raw diet are:

  • Balance over time
  • The calcium and phosphorus ratio should be 1:1. Meats are high in phosphorus, bones are high in calcium and whole prey, fish, eggs and tripe have a balanced ratio.
  • Organ meat should not exceed 15% of the diet. Feed liver once a week (or several small servings per week) and try to find an organic source if possible because the liver is responsible for filtering toxins out of the body.
  • Feel free to feed ‘weird and icky things’ such as chicken feet, beef trachea, tails, lung, kidney, testicles and pizzles.  Beef trachea, trim, chicken and turkey feet are loaded in natural chondroitin and glucosamine which help to build healthy joints.
  • If feeding pork or salmon, be certain to freeze the meat for two weeks before feeding to reduce the small risk of parasites.
  • NEVER feed cooked bones of any type. Raw bones are soft enough to bend and digest easily. For optimal safety, meal times should always be supervised.

Try to find grass fed animals that are not given hormones or medications if possible. Younger animals in general will have accumulated fewer toxins to pass on to your dog.

 

Continue reading at Dogs Naturally Magazine.

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