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  #31  
Old 09-13-2012, 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by sillysally View Post
Aren't there other nutritional benefits to bone and raw in general besides dental? Would feeding ground raw be better than feeding kibble even if there aren't whole hones involved?
Yep! As long as there is bone ground in or an appropriate source of calcium, feeding ground meat mixes or RMBs is mostly just a personal preference. There could be some slight benefits of RMBs for dental health, enrichment and the such but for the most part, you will get all the benefits of raw from feeding good ground mixes. Like Emily, I have seen plenty of ground raw fed dogs who's teeth drastically improved from when they ate kibble.
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  #32  
Old 09-13-2012, 05:21 PM
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Dance eats primarily ground raw. Sometimes I'll give her whole meals also, but ground is just a whole lot easier for everyone. And less expensive. I can't say her teeth have improved since being on ground raw, because they were never bad to begin with. But she and the Dobermans get turkey necks and other bones at least once a week (usually more) and those all keep their teeth sparkly white.

Health benefits that I've personally noticed with Dance over the last 7 months of being exclusively on raw:

- Softer coat
- Smaller stools, less frequent, and zero random diarrhea explosions that she used to get
- No more fish breath (and her kibble wasn't even a fishy kibble)

And that's about it. People who feed kibble that isn't very good quality and/or disagrees with their dog are the people who tend to see drastic differences in their dogs when they adjust to raw (if the dog does well on raw). But Dance was already eating and doing well on a diet of a good quality kibble with quite a bit of raw meals as well, so I didn't notice many major differences when I switched her to completely raw. The big bonus for me and the only reason I decided to try switching her back to completely raw long term was to see if it would cure her random mystery explosions if I stuck to raw and zero kibble, and so far so good, so for me that was totally worth it. And I feel so much better feeding her real food. I look at the Dobes' bowl of kibble and just feel so much better feeding Dance food that looks fresh and real.

Health benefits I've seen in other dogs have been better muscle tone and healthier skin. I can't see much of a difference in Dance's muscle tone, and she's always had healthy skin. But her coat is nicer, which I noticed within just a few weeks of switching, so that says something I would say since it seemed perfectly soft and healthy prior as well.

The one issue I have with Dance on raw vs kibble is that it is really, really easy for her to gain weight on raw. Most people don't seem to have that experience (dogs tend to lean out on raw), but I have to really watch Dance's portions.

As far as feeding raw with kibble, Dance seemed to do fine on a kibble meal and a raw meal in the same day in the past. I never tried mixing it with her kibble. I have mixed some of Dance's raw in with the Dobes' kibble though and haven't had any digestive upsets except for when I gave Ripley a protein he apparently doesn't react well too (resulted in major rash and vomiting). But that had nothing to do with eating raw food with kibble. Some people say absolutely no way should you mix the two, but I know a lot of dogs who can eat both in one meal perfectly fine.
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  #33  
Old 09-13-2012, 06:46 PM
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So if I were to order a months worth, should I buy only one protein or several?
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  #34  
Old 09-13-2012, 06:53 PM
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Originally Posted by naturalfeddogs View Post
There can be issues with kibble, as well as socks being swallowed, rocks etc... Just because someone had an issue with a drumstick really doesn't mean anything. Sounds like a drumstick was too small.
Did you read my post? Like at all? One more time: One of my dogs cannot eat pieces large enough to prevent gulping, or she would be morbidly obese. Yeah, DUH, the drumstick was too small. Now we hand feed her anything with bone in it.

Anyway, one surgery and $1600 later, I'm glad to learn it doesn't mean anything. I'll pass that on to my dog.
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Old 09-13-2012, 08:38 PM
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Originally Posted by sillysally View Post
So if I were to order a months worth, should I buy only one protein or several?
I would start out with atleast chicken and maybe turkey for later in the month. You definatly don't want to start him out with too many different proteins. That would cause umm some major blow outs if you where switching them too fast.
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  #36  
Old 09-14-2012, 07:22 AM
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My personal input: Ground raw is awesome, and a very good option for dogs who are gulpers and/or owners who are uneasy with raw bones! It's healthier AND cheaper than canned food.

After having a few issues with bones, and hearing about other people with bone horror stories, I'm overly cautious about feeding bones. No beef/buffalo bones, and no weight bearing leg bones at all for my dogs. If you still want to benefits of bones you can feed a weekly meal of bones, something BIG that the dog has to work on, like pig feet/ribs, lamb shanks, turkey backs, or a beef knuckle bone (I let my dogs have these because they're 90% tissue/cartilege, and take them away once they get to the actual bone in the middle). As long as you provide some bones to scrape their teeth on. And feeding ground raw is much better than just kibble. It's like eating chicken compared to eating a cracker. The cracker sticks to your teeth, which is what causes plaque and decay.
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  #37  
Old 09-14-2012, 07:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emily View Post
Did you read my post? Like at all? One more time: One of my dogs cannot eat pieces large enough to prevent gulping, or she would be morbidly obese. Yeah, DUH, the drumstick was too small. Now we hand feed her anything with bone in it.

Anyway, one surgery and $1600 later, I'm glad to learn it doesn't mean anything. I'll pass that on to my dog.
Would it have been any different, or cheaper if it had been a sock, or something else foreign?
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  #38  
Old 09-14-2012, 07:54 AM
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I've fed at least partial raw for 7 years and honestly there is NO WAY IN HELL I would give a small piece of bone-in meat or a large piece of boneless meat to a gulper dog, especially one new to raw. My favorite way to get an overly enthusiastic dog used to chewing is to give them something like a whole beef neck bone, which they really have to gnaw on in order to get the meat off. Any boneless meals are ground up for the gulpers.

I am unlike some people because I am absolutely in love with feeding recreational bones, even beef bones and weight bearing ones. I personally have had less of a problem with recreational bones than I have with the weight bearing bones of poultry, but maybe that is just my dogs being weirdos. I let my dog chew on almost any bone I can get for her, her teeth are in great shape for an almost six-year-old and her jaw muscles are ridiculous.
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  #39  
Old 09-14-2012, 08:20 AM
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The only weight bearing bones I ever give are deer legs, since they aren't quite as dense as say a cow, bison, elk etc....
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  #40  
Old 09-14-2012, 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Gypsydals View Post
I would start out with atleast chicken and maybe turkey for later in the month. You definatly don't want to start him out with too many different proteins. That would cause umm some major blow outs if you where switching them too fast.
You could do a few proteins, but just don't go crazy the first time you feed anything. Slippery elm or some pumpkin/sweet potato to mix in would be a good idea. There's even canned pumpkin for dogs, and one company now has a version with ginger etc. in it for sensitive tummies.
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