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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Recently I posted about Toby's switch from puppy food. He is currently on Blue Buffalo Small Breed Puppy. He has thrived on it and I want to keep him on it for a few more months. In my last post, I had basically eliminated the possibility of raw feeding due to budget/time constraints. I settled on trying the Acana kibble.

However, over the past week I have been doing a lot of research on the benefits of raw and calculated that it will actually be about the same maybe even cheaper than kibble for Toby.

So now the questions are: how hard is it to feed raw? What type of schedule does one need to follow? How much bone/meat/organ do they need? I am concerned about making sure he has a balanced diet. Would he need supplements? What other considerations do I need to address?

What do you guys think I should do? Acana would definitely be simpler, but I don't mind doing more work if it will benefit him that much more.

I have a couple months to figure everything out and am looking to come up with a plan. Thanks in advance!!!!
 

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well i have done both! lol and i can tell you! raw is SO no hard! and its cheaper! if you go to a proper butchers you can get really cheap deals! its not that hard really! all you do is weight it , get the right amount for them and give it them! DONE! XD also you can cut it up into meal portions and put it in the freezer! XD x
 

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I have a little kitchen scale and weigh out two ounces of raw meat, put each 2 oz. piece into a "cube" of an ice cube tray & freeze. Once a month, I spend about 1.5 hrs. cutting up and "prepping" the trays. I fill 6 trays with meat, and that has us set for a month, month & a half on meat. As for bone, I let my Ote eat a raw chicken wing/neck or cornish hen rib/leg four times a week and she chews on duck feet daily. I buy the wings/necks pre-cut and simply give them to her, no hard work involved. I buy the whole cornish hen & cut that up in my alotted time each month. As for organ, I give a pinky nail size sliver of organ four times a week. Organ shouldn't be introduced right away. I'm looking into feeding dehydrated kidney/liver as the organ portion because it is readily available in my area. If you could find an online supplier of dehydrated organs, it would be worth trying - or search for suppliers in your area. Very easy once you get the hang of it. It's also cheaper and much healthier in the long run, and very much worth it. Within a month of having Ote on raw, I noticed a huge difference in her coat, teeth, and overall behavior. She loves her meals, and eats much more, and more readily than before. It was a struggle to get her to eat kibble, but raw is perfect!
 

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I feed all 3 of my dogs (2 chis and 1 sharpei) prey model raw. I started in 2009 and have never looked back. My schedule is one good size meal in the morning and a small chunk of sof meat in the evening (just so they have something on their tummies) and this works well for me and them. If you do raw, start with chicken for a couple weeks until stools are good, you'll need boney meals at first.
I give salmon oil as a supplement. And for ratios I mostly judge by their poo. Variety (after time, they must get used to different meat proteins and organs gradually) is important. I feed venison, elk, pork, chicken, beef, rabbit, and turkey. I've tried dove and they hated it. I say just don't overthink it. Its not very difficult. Just no enhanced meats (sodium solution added) and try getting in touch with a butcher, hunter, or buy in bulk if you have freezer space. My family hunts so I have that advantage. Raw is really not expensive if you search out resources well.
 

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I feed a premade raw so I am not sharing form my personal experience but from what I have taken time to read and learn here.

I'd definitively consult the raw feeding stickied posts under that subforum. Brodysmom and others have really detailed everything out and those who have come after get to benefit from their homework.

It is important to have balance. Meat, bone and organ.

From all I have read, it takes some effort, planing and prep time and gaining understanding. Once you are good there, I understand it to not be expensive nor hard.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the advice all! The more I learn about raw feeding, the more I think it would be the right thing to do. But I am SO worried that I will screw him up and end up with a sick dog- this worry is making me second guess my gut instincts to go raw.

Karen, thanks for the info about that sub-forum, I am heading there now :)
 

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Bone is really important for calcium it keeps the stools firm and for dental health. Organs are vital but only 10% of the diet should be organs. 5 percent liver and 5 percent other organs. For me, organs are the most difficult part. My dogs will eat beef and chicken liver but not kidney. I actually just found a place today that has pork liver so I got some to give it a try. The salmon oil supplement is really great for many things, heart health, coat and skin health, and its even a natural anti-inflamatory. So great for a dogs with arthritis and such. The amount you feed really depends on your dogs size and activity level. My Audrey is 6 pounds and eats almost twice as much as my 4 pound girl Sophia. Because Audrey is very active always running and jumping about. I think with the raw diet, getting started is the most difficult part. But a couple months in and its really easy.
 

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Like Karen said, Tracy (Brodysmom) has a very informative post on raw feeding in the Raw section of this forum. It has all the information you need to start out.

http://www.chihuahua-people.com/raw-food/49576-you-considering-raw-diet.html

I'm actually wishing I decided to do full raw instead of kibble with Gemma. I too thought it was going to be cheaper for Acana but I think it's going to be about the same price, really. Just a little more work with raw. Right now she's eating Acana kibble in the morning, a chicken wing with bone in to chew on in the afternoon, and then a plate of cut up raw chicken meat in the evening.

Acana is great, but it seems raw may be just as cheap here. I know I can get bone-in cuts of chicken and pork and chicken livers quite cheap, but I'm not sure about beef or anything else. I'm going to keep her on Acana and raw chicken right now, but after my $50 supply of Acana runs out, I may try switching her entirely to raw.
 

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Caitlin,

Did you ever see the video I posted on here of Benny eating the whole Cornish hen when he was Gemma's age now? Can you get cornish hens? The bones are smaller and softer.
 

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Caitlin,

Did you ever see the video I posted on here of Benny eating the whole Cornish hen when he was Gemma's age now? Can you get cornish hens? The bones are smaller and softer.
I don't believe I ever did, Mary. I've never seen cornish hens at the grocery store here. Aren't they a bit expensive in the US?

Edit: Nevermind, I looked it up. They aren't expensive in the US. Maybe I always just thought they were because the only part I would have personally ate from them would have been the breasts, so I thought it was expensive for two tiny breasts, lol. But for a dog that will eat basically all of it, that's a good value.
 

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I pay $3.69 for one. Most are over 20 oz, so I get 10 meals from each one. Here is the video of Benny with the hen... He looked so tiny then!

 

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Wow, that's awesome. We are going grocery shopping in a few minutes so I will have a look for them. I really don't think they have them, though. Maybe at a really big store that's a bit far from us, but we don't have a car so we only go there when my boyfriend's sister is also making a trip.
 
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