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  #1  
Old 07-31-2006, 01:45 AM
LabBreeder
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Default Thinking about feeding raw? Suggestions?

I was thinking about how crappy all the kibble is around here and was wondering what the best way would be to switch to feeding raw and what meats are required? Would I also need veggies and vitamins as well? I've been giving bits and pieces of burger raw and they love it. Sometimes I give them a frozen chunk of burger or a small frozen piece of pork steak...but just as a treat.
So, what do I need to feed and how do I start a raw diet? Any input from anyone that feeds raw/frozen raw is welcome. Websites with info, fact sheets, etc.
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  #2  
Old 07-31-2006, 02:15 AM
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juliefurry juliefurry is offline
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I was just researching this and was coming to start a topic myself. I'm sort of nervous to start feeding raw but I was really thinking that it could possibly be cheaper, or atleast the same price, as feeding the Evo kibble and canned. We are going to price out the food at the butchers tomorrow and just see about how much it would cost. I found this site though and it's fairly helpful, atleast to me.

http://www.rawdogranch.com/rawdiet.htm

actually I think someone already posted this website awhile back and I've been looking for it for a couple days and finally found it.
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  #3  
Old 07-31-2006, 02:28 AM
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I've been searching online and have found a few sites, some with DVM's responding, and it makes me a little worried about feeding raw.

http://www.secondchanceranch.com/tra...eat/index.html

http://www.vetinfo.com/drawmeat.html

Then there are these 2 sites that sound good, but both have differing opinions on what to feed.

http://www.rawlearning.com/rawfaq.html

http://www.njboxers.com/faqs.htm

70Lbs x 16 = 1120 ounces
1120 x .02 = 22.4 ounces of food per day
22.4 x .6 = 13.44 ounces of RMB -----60% RMB
22.4 x .4 = 8.96 ounces of Veg. Patty mix.-----40% Veg. Patty mix

16 oz in one pound. So I would be looking at 1.4 lbs total per day per dog. 2.8 lbs per day * 7 days = 19.6 lbs per week for 2 dogs. GEEZ, that's 78 lbs per month! That sounds like alot of food. Someone said Innova or Canidae was $20-$25 for a 20 lb bag. I'd be spending approximately $50 per month (on the good kibble) vs. 49 lbs of meat/bone per month at $1.50 per pound = roughly $73 per month. That's not counting the veggie/offal stuff either.

If I'm wrong, somebody please let me know. Most meats around here are between .99/lb and 1.50/lb (low side = sale, high side = average). There used to be a meat market about 15 minutes away, but they closed down. I just did a search and there is a meat market in town. Once I get enough info on what I'd need for 2 Labs (70 lb and 54 lb *still growing*) meat/bone/veggie/offal wise I'll ask him/her what the price would run per pound for what I'd need per month.
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Old 07-31-2006, 08:20 AM
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When purchasing your meat and raw meaty bones, you have to look for bargains and buy in bulk. For example, I get chicken leg quarters by the case- they are about 20 bucks for a 42lb case. I get these big cryopack pork shoulders, they are about 1.30/lb. and the packs are 20lbs or so. Same with beef sirloin- buying it that way is much cheaper than ground meat or frozen hamburgers. Get your friends to give you "freezer burned" meat when they clean out their freezer. Get friends who hunt to help you out. Look for bargains everywhere- each time we go shopping I look for meats that are on reduced price because they are about to expire. Yesterday we found packs of beef heart for 99 cents a lb, which is by far the cheapest I've ever seen it around here. They had a special price on pork ribs for 1.49/lb so I got 4 big packs of them, about 7-9lbs each. Another time I got several packs of cornish hens that were on reduced price. I found that my butcher isn't the cheapest place to go- clubs like Sam's or Costco are much cheaper, though my butcher can order things for me like cases of chicken backs or necks. I'm also looking into buying something like a half a pig from the butcher, and having them save me the organs instead of making scrapple, etc.

What I do is try to keep my total cost to about a dollar a pound- that is about the same as a good quality kibble. So if I spend 50 cents/lb on chicken legs, I can spend a little more on beef for muscle meat. It all averages out over time. The reason you have to feed so much is it's not reduced and baked and concentrated like kibble. Raw food contains a lot of water. You'll find your dogs drink less because they get more water from their food. Plus, SO much more of the food is available to the dog as nutrition. You'll notice their stools are about 1/4 the size they are on kibble- which shows you how much waste products the dog can't use is in kibble.

For offal, I feed liver or kidney. You don't need a lot of that, maybe an ounce or 2 per day, and I don't feed it every day. I feed them an egg about every other day, shell and all. I don't feed any veggies. The only supps I use are fish oil and vitamin E. Those, I buy big jars of capsules from Sam's club, one's made for humans (cheaper than pet vitamins/oils)

If you do some more searching around, you will find a site that refutes every argument on that 2nd chance site with facts, not conjecture, which is what her site is based on.

Other good sites are www.rawdogranch.com and www.rawfed.com
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Old 07-31-2006, 08:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LabBreeder
http://rawfed.com/myths/rebuttal.html

There will always be people who think raw is the worst thing to feed.
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Old 07-31-2006, 09:22 AM
weylyn weylyn is offline
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Quote:
what meats are required?
There is no required meat, only what you want to feed and what your dogs like. Variety is very important. I feed chicken (whole), rabbit (whole and when I can afford it), pork, beef (on sale) and fish. I hope to feed some venison when deer season starts in August. It's my personal preference to feed more red meat than white meat.

Quote:
Would I also need veggies and vitamins as well?
According to how I feed, no. They do not NEED veggies in their diet, but it's fine to give out a veggie or a fruit here and there. I sometimes use veggies for training, but I do not consider them a staple of their diet. I also do not add vitamin supplements. As long as they're getting proper amounts of bone, meat and organs...then I don't need them. You do run the risk of over supplementing or binding vit/minerals when you add a supplement.

http://www.rawlearning.com/supplementmyths.html

There is one supplement I do feed and that's fish body oil/salmon oil (not flaxseed! not cod liver!). Commerically raised meat usually lacks in the omegas, so that's why I supplement with FBO.

Quote:
16 oz in one pound. So I would be looking at 1.4 lbs total per day per dog. 2.8 lbs per day * 7 days = 19.6 lbs per week for 2 dogs
Don't worry, LabBreeder. I feed 7lbs A DAY! That's almost 50lbs a week. Sometimes a little more, when it calls for it.

Don't waste your money on veggies, they're not a requirement.

Quote:
Any input from anyone that feeds raw/frozen raw is welcome
I can only tell you how I feed, because there are many "styles" of raw feeding:

5-10% organs (50% is liver)

10-15% edible bones

80-85% muscle meat

Never feed little bony pieces like wings or necks unless attached to the bird/animal

It's always safer, and more enjoyable for your dog, to feed big pieces rather than hunks or tiny little meals.

Raw feeding is a cheap as you make it, I try not to buy anything over $1/lb, unless it's REALLY worth it (last week I bought wild caught Alaskan pink salmon for $2/lb...I couldn't resist). Ninety-nine percent of the time, I always buy in bulk or by the case. Be friends with your butcher, grocery store butcher, meat processor...It'll pay out and they're usually pretty nice folks. The people I've worked with are always interested in what I'm doing with all that meat, and generally amused by how I feed my dogs. One butcher reserved me 50lbs of beef on sale at $.99/lb, just because he knows that I buy monthly bulk orders from them.

Don't always rely on grocery store prices, they're usually pretty high. Try meat processors or packing plants. If you have to look at grocery store prices, contact the butcher about placing a bulk order of the product you want and then ask for the bulk discount. You'll usually get some cents cut off the retail price because they don't have to package the product for the shelves, and that saves them money.

I spend about $20-$25 per dog per month. The Wolfhound costs more to feed, but that's to be expected.

Here's some helpful websites to get you going:
http://rawfed.com/myths/index.html
http://rawfed.com/myths/switch.html
http://rawfed.com/myths/feedraw.html

Last edited by weylyn; 07-31-2006 at 09:59 AM.
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  #7  
Old 07-31-2006, 09:45 AM
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Wiggle Butt Wiggle Butt is offline
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I feed the same style as weylyn, and definetly feel it's best after comparing all the different styles with what I feel a carnivore requires. My dogs are thriving. Nova and Mandy were at the vet at least twice a month while on kibble, now they go hardly ever. Mandy went last week for the first time since starting raw, and it was just for bloodwork and a heartworm check.
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  #8  
Old 07-31-2006, 10:01 AM
weylyn weylyn is offline
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Since switching to raw, I haven't had to buy flea/tick meds this summer (knock on wood!!)...and I live in the deep South. I used to have to buy 'em when the dogs ate kibble.
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  #9  
Old 07-31-2006, 12:26 PM
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Here's another question I've got. When you say "whole" chicken/rabbit/etc. Do you mean the carcass with meat on it or an actual whole (usually a couple lbs) chicken?
So if I did this I'd be feeding different varieties of meat on bones, letting them eat the bones (that aren't to small?), liver, heart, fish oil, eggs...and a fish once every couple of weeks and maybe some veggies every so often. Is that about right?
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  #10  
Old 07-31-2006, 12:41 PM
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DanL DanL is offline
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Whole chicken for me is something like a broiler or cornish hen, fed intact, including neck and giblets. The ones I get are about 4lbs so I cut it in half. Same would go for a rabbit, it'd be a whole rabbit. I cut them in half too.

Don't worry about smaller bones. Things like chicken rib bones are so small and soft they crunch them right up. Read some of the sites that are linked above, you'll get a better idea of what and how to feed. For example, last night, my guys got this:
Gunnar- 1 whole chicken leg quarter. 1 thigh from a leg quarter (about 2lbs total weight). 1lb of beef heart. 1 egg, 2000mg fish oil, 400mg vitamin E.
Midnite- 2 turkey necks (about 8oz each) and about 8oz of beef heart, 1 egg, 1000mg fish oil, 400mg vit E
Bruzer- 1 turkey neck, about 6oz beef heart, 1 egg, 1000mg fish oil, 400mg vit E.
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