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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I currently do not have a Chihuahua. I maybe inheriting a Chihuahua from my Grandma as she may be going to a nursing home (this is still being decided). So I am here to get myself prepared if I should wind up with her dogs.

I have two Rottweilers whom are raw fed dogs. My male that is 8 years old I switched to raw about 3 years ago. My 2 1/2 year old female came to me from her breeder on raw. My dogs' breeder has been a wealth of information for our family on natural health for the dogs. I have spoke with her about preparing a raw meal for a Chihuahua but, it's new to us as we are both used to feeding Rottweilers.

I have been reading this week on Chihuahua forums and I have read that some people are buying a grinder and grinding the entire meal up into a ground food (meat, bones, organs, tripe). I had always been told with my Rottweilers to let them chew up meat chunks and bones as it was good for their jaws and teeth. Which do you all do?

I have meaty lamb rib bones, Chickens, beef ribs, rabbit and fish for my Rottweilers but I was thinking I needed to stock up on smaller items such as maybe Chicken wings. Would the Chihuahua be okay to eat those or do items like that have to go through a grinder for her? Does anyone else have any ideas on smaller type bones that your Chihuahua does well with?

Also what do you give for recreational bones?

Should I switch her to raw cold turkey or not? I do remember when I switched my older male to Raw I had to keep him on Chicken for about 2 weeks before adding other proteins and then finally organs. Is that the same with a Chihuahua?

I guess I am worried that I am gonna give her something that will make her sick or that I will give her a bone that she will choke on. When I switched my male over to Raw he was a 90 pound dog. He did get sick a few times that first few weeks but, I didn't worry about it to much. he quickly recovered and maybe lost 3 pounds those few weeks. With a Chihuahua I am worried about it because they are already so small with no weight to lose.

I just want to have a week or two worth of meals here just in case. I figure better to be prepared than not. If I don't have to take the Chihuahua, the time isn't wasted as the Rottweilers could eat the food supply I stock up for her.

I'm guessing her to be somewhere in between 3-4 pounds maybe. She is really small. She will be a year old this summer I believe.
 

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I will try and answer your questions. I'm sure others will chime in with their experiences. :)

I don't grind. Our chi's have teeth. I let Brody use his. :) If you can feed a rottie, you can certainly feed a chi. Just think smaller.

I like to start out with cornish hens. They are the right size for our toys. I get the 16 ounce unenhanced ones (usually at Walmart). Then I whack it up into 8 chunks, so you have 2 ounces per meal. This may be too much food for a 3 pounder, so adjust accordingly. I personally don't do wings or necks, but I know others that do and they work fine as long as you add more meat as they are almost all bone.

If you are into whole prey, you can also do rabbit for a bone-in meal. Quail are great. If you can stomach it, some people do rats, mice, or guinea pigs. Rodent supply places are great sources of food. (Frozen first of course).

For a good chew you can do pork or beef ribs. I had some short bison ribs that worked great for Brody. They didn't have much meat, but he worked and worked on the sinew/meat that was there and stripped it clean and then I let him gnaw on the ends of the rib. Once it dried out, after a day or so, I threw it out.

Yes, you will want to transition onto chicken first and then slowly add in other proteins. Same as a big dog.

Brody's typical menu uses cornish hen chunks a couple times a week, mainly for bone content. I fill in the rest with meat .... beef, pork, lamb, venison are staples. I do organs as a meal on the weekends. (I have worked up to this over time, not for beginners). Right now I'm working through a deer heart given to us by a friend.

I keep a supply of chicken wing TIPS in the freezer. If I see a looser stool, I just throw him a wing tip and that bit of bone is enough to get him back on track. Quick and easy. He loves crunching through them frozen. :) You can do the same with chicken feet. They are a great size for chi's.
 

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I raw feed a 43 lb dog as well as the chi (and had 2 raw fed Rotties prior to our current dogs)

The only difference is the size of the meat and bones.

Tinsel can crunch though pork neck bones, they are rec bones for Spacely.

I switched Spacely to raw cold turkey (no pun intended) He went from whatever he was fed before we got him to raw with little problems. He did have mucousy poop for a day or two but that is fairly normal for the switch.

I don't grind his food, he has teeth and knows how to use them. I did buy some ground dog food mixes when I first got him due to his teeth issues and overshot jaw but he showed me that he has no problems eating meat hunks and bones. I still feed the ground occasionally because it is easy to get locally, I can get a variety of different protein and it has bone/organs ground in.

I have also found that Spacely eats closer to 5 oz of food rather than the 3 oz recommended for his size. I am about to cut him back to 4.5 oz since he is gaining a bit of weight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you so much Denise and Brody's Mom!

I think she will switch to raw okay. A few times that she has stayed here I gave her cut up chicken breast and she ate it right down. When she is around the Rottweilers she will refuse her kibble that Grandma sends with her and will hold out until I give her what my dogs are eating. I've never given her anything with bone though, so that will be new for her.
 

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I also started raw with a bigger dog before getting my chi. I have been amazed how well she does with it all.

When we got her she was a puppy and underweight (from the pound) and we started her on raw right away. She only gained weight, luckily, because she could not afford to loose any. Like Brodysmom we feed mostly Cornish game hen for bone, although we started on bone-in chicken breast for a week before adding anything else (sounds similar to what you have done with your bigger guy). Other than that our chi eats exactly what our other dog eats (right now for meat they are getting goat and beef a lot). It is absolutely better to feed whole chunks, not grind. I suspect the people grinding for their chis wold also be grinding for bigger dogs. You having seen the benefit of bigger hunks for mental and tooth health probably don't need much convincing.

The only thing that is different (and I hear this a lot from small dog owners) is that my chi eats 4-6% of her expected adult weight and my 22lb mix eats more like 2% of his body weight. So be prepared for the chi to need proportionally more food than a bigger dog. Other than that everything is exactly the same, just smaller!

Good luck!
 
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