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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Paco is almost 4 pounds so he is supposed to have 2 ounces of raw food a day. I got a bunch of chicken thighs to start him today but just the bone weighs 2 ounces! I tried cutting one in half but it is very sharp and I'm scared to feed him that. It is sharp and splintered. Will he eat them ok or what should I do?? I gave him some chicken without bones and he liked it so I am almost encouraged. I am just too afraid to give those bones to him.
 

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Try a chicken wing tip, or the middle section of the wing. Try any part of a cornish hen. Ribs from a chicken (very soft). Some people do chicken necks.

I wondered about that thigh when you said you were starting on a thigh! The meat is fine, the bone is pretty darn big! I advise starting out with cornish hens as the bones are very small and all are edible. Most chickens (thigh/backs/legs) are just too big and way too much bone.

If you want, you could let him chew on the knobby end of the thigh bone. Maybe hold it so he gets the idea and let him chew on the softer cartilage. He may be able to ingest a little of the bone. Certainly don't let him have the whole thing.

Bones are necessary, they provide the fiber for firm stools. But too much bone can cause constipation. No bone at all can cause loose stools. So you are looking to keep bone at about 10%. A cornish hen is 30% bone, so three times what you need. So for example you might do a meal of chicken meat only, then meat with a chicken wing tip for supper. Then another boneless meal of chicken only and then a few chicken ribs, etc. You will learn how much bone your dog needs over time. In the beginning, its good to be a little bone heavy just so you don't have to deal with loose stools.

If you can't get to the store to get some chicken wings or a cornish hen, just let him gnaw on the end of a thigh bone, but certainly don't let him eat the whole thing. Just a few good gnaws/nibbles should satisfy his bone requirement for now. Oh, and peel the skin off until you get him transitioned. Too much fat can cause loose stools. You want to keep it simple in the beginning, just chicken meat and a little bone for at least a week or two before you add in anything else.

:) Good luck and get back to us with questions! We will help you. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks. I just sent you a message cause I am sitting here with raw chicken all over my counter and not knowing what to do next...LOL. Thank you. I didn't even think of letting him gnaw on it for a while and then taking it away from him. Duh! It is amazing how difficult it can be to do things simply!!
 

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Yes. She is very knowledgeable and very patient with us newbies! I have come to appreciate her. ( and I don't know why I am writing this like she won't see it...LOL)

Thank you Tracy!

Our first feeding turned out very traumatic! I gave him about an ounce of chicken and found a little knuckle to give him with it. He started yelping and running around in circles just as he was finishing! I was scared to death. When I finally got him to come to me I looked in his mouth and he had a tiny drop of blood on his tongue. I think he bit his tongue. He is fine now and I also managed to jump start my own heart!

I do think I aged a few years though!!:rolleyes:
 

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Oh goodness, he is going to scare you to death!! :)

I already told you this, but I like to start with cornish hens. They are the right size for beginners (and experienced eaters too!) I don't give leg or thigh bones from regular chickens. The only parts of a regular chicken I would use would be neck, wings, and maybe the ribs.

You can always use a hammer and smash the bones (in the meat) if you want. That can help some new dogs learn to eat their crunchy chicken and figure out the bones.

Yes there's a learning curve with raw! :) Just be patient. You will learn and so will Paco. We will all be here to help you.

I will put this cute video on here to reassure you. This is a baby chi and his owner is starting him on cornish hens. WHOLE ONES! :) She lets him figure it out and eat his fill and then throws it in the fridge to take out for the next meal. It works for them. :)

This cornish hen is about the same size as him!

 

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Can I just ask why you don't feed leg or thigh bones? Is it just because it is too much bone for one meal, or have you found them unsuitable in some other way?
I give ours regular chicken thighs sometimes, bones and all, they eat them no problem. For 2kg dogs mine eat a LOT though, about twice the amount they should for their weight. They are young and very active and both on the skinny side, Harley especially could do with putting a little weight on.
 

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Can I just ask why you don't feed leg or thigh bones? Is it just because it is too much bone for one meal, or have you found them unsuitable in some other way?
I give ours regular chicken thighs sometimes, bones and all, they eat them no problem. For 2kg dogs mine eat a LOT though, about twice the amount they should for their weight. They are young and very active and both on the skinny side, Harley especially could do with putting a little weight on.
I personally don't do leg or thigh bones because it's too much bone for Brody. I try to keep bone at 10% of the diet.

A chicken thigh is 21% bone, so twice what he should have. It's possible to balance that out with several meat only meals in between the bone in meals though. So if it works for you, that's fine! I just find it easier to use chicken wing tips or cornish hens as my bony pieces and fill in the rest with meat only meals.

For example, if Brody eats about 5 ounces a day, a weeks worth of meat would be 35 ounces. 3.5 ounces of that would need to be bone. I would imagine a chicken thigh bone would weigh a couple of ounces, so if he ate one, that would be almost his whole weekly allotment of bone at one sitting. That's why I prefer to use smaller bones like rib bones or chicken wing tips or cornish hen chunks for his bone content. The rest of his meals are then meat only.

Here's the bone content of chickens .....

Excerpted from the USDA Nutrient Database;
NDL/FNIC Food Composition Database Home Page


RAW - BONE Percentages in Chicken

Broiler or Fryer whole, meat and skin and giblets and neck 31%
back, meat and skin 44%
breast, meat and skin 20%
drumstick, meat and skin 33%
thigh, meat and skin 21%
leg, meat and skin 27%
neck, meat and skin 36%
neck, meat only 75%
wing, meat and skin 46%
wing, meat only 68%

Capon 27%
Cornish Hen 39% no neck/giblets
Roaster 27%
Stewing 32% ( 27% bone, 5% separable fat)
 

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Not sure if anyone said it above, I'm too tired to read all, but just keep a close eye when feeding lots of raw chicken bones (especially necks which, to my mind, carry the least danger with splintering), they can end up with absolutely chronic constipation in some dogs.
 

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Thanks Tracy for posting the bone %, that is very helpful.

Tracy - have you ever known anyone who feeds with the whole
animal as in this video of Benny ?? I like the mental stimulation
that provides, but I fear Mimi would eat until she exploded if
I allowed her to just eat until she was done on her own!


Suzn - Mimi bite her tongue more than a few times when I
started feeding her raw. She still will on occasion, I just
try to make sure she is eating a little slower.


AussieLass - The thing I love about RAW feeding is, if I notice
my dog is constipated, I know immediately what changes to make
to their diet. Same thing with diarrhea. I don't see either ever
becoming chronic as its so easy to correct.
 

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Love the video! Hilarious how his back end keeps popping up.
Thanks to Tracy for sharing all her hard research. I'm still trying to find good suppliers to keep cost cheap for my two. My husband doesn't like the idea of raw. So I don't feel I can use his money to buy it. I only work part-time.
 

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Tracy - have you ever known anyone who feeds with the whole
animal as in this video of Benny ?? I like the mental stimulation
that provides, but I fear Mimi would eat until she exploded if
I allowed her to just eat until she was done on her own!
Usually it is the bigger dogs that are given whole prey like entire chickens. I don't know any chi people who feed whole prey. I think Brody would be overwhelmed if I gave him a whole cornish hen! That might be a fun experiment though! It would be interesting to see if they would self regulate or just gorge. ;)
 

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If your husband hates raw, why don't you try ZiwiPeak or another premade raw food. I use Logic frozen paddies. Complete raw meals. Sue
 

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I like to let my dogs eat off of bigger food! I weigh it before I give it too them and check it again in a few mins to see if they have eaten their amounts. I do not worry about then gulping their raw food this way. I have always read feed bigger than their head! Jilly my Maltese choked on me twice! Her Cornish hens I cut into small pieces and give her the exact amount she needs. For her night meal of meat only, she gets big roasts to gnaw off of. Same with Benny and Jack.

Mary J
 
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