Raw food diet for dogs
Should we or shouldn’t we ??
After we sadly lost our Rottweiler due to his long term battle with Cancer plus other friends and family also losing there dogs to the same disease, we began to question the quality of dry dog food products that we were feeding them, these suspicions were reinforced when reading about the major pet food recall in 2007 which had led to dogs becoming ill and even dying, it was then that I seriously started looking into the health aspects of a raw meat diet for our dog as an alternative to dry,
and it was not until we got our Cane Corso pup Kody, that our breeder fully introduced us to a Raw meat diet as she has been using this diet for all her Cane Corso’s for 7 years and has produced Championship winning dogs.
Of course, we were unsure of a raw food diet for dogs and had always fed our dogs canned meat and dry biscuits (also known as kibble in the USA).
Interestingly, commercially produced dog food was first developed in 1860, by an electrician named James Spratt who on his trip to London noticed that sailors had dropped scraps of biscuits around the shipyard which many dogs were attracted to, so consequently gave him the idea to produce biscuit based food for dogs.
Examples of a raw food diet for dogs
A raw food diet of uncooked meats, edible bones, offal, etc. was essentially the dogs natural diet in the wild before they were domesticated and able to eat a more varied diet.
There are many variations of this diet and some often include things like flax seed, Sunflower seeds, Pumpkin, coconut oil, carrots, spinach, peas, broccoli, asparagus
and some fruits like banana,
apple, blueberries, etc
There are many benefits of feeding your dog a raw food diet some of which are:
Cleaner teeth due to chewing on raw bone this also helps exercise and strengthen the jaw, whilst enzymes found in the raw meat help control tartar build up and therefore fresher breath, the addition of essential fatty acids which are found in coconut oil and a balanced combination of certain fruit and vegetables combined with macro nutrients produces a glossier coat and healthier skin, these ingredients are mostly found in high quality commercial raw food products, this diet leads to better weight control, more energy, stamina, improved digestion and smaller harder stools which eventually turn a chalky white color with reduced odor.
Another important thing to note
Dogs have a much shorter digestive system allowing them to handle a certain amount of bacteria that humans cannot along with extremely concentrated hydrochloric acid in there stomach which is nearly ten times that of a human therefore enabling them to eat raw meats that may contain e.coli or salmonella without ill effects.
There are many things a dog must not eat or ingest, some of which are Chocolate, Grapes, onions, raisins, avocado and some uncooked vegetables.
We would recommend where possible not feeding your dog any processed human food as many contain high levels of sugars, salts, additives and preservatives which can produce high levels of toxins in your pet leading to things like kidney, liver and respiratory failure also seizures with possible death.
When a raw meat diet is properly balanced and includes all essential nutrients to stay healthy, we believe that your dog could not be on a better diet.
Cons of a raw food diet for dogs
- Some fruit and veg can be dangerous to your dog, so make sure your don’t go overboard with the portion size as this could have the opposite effect you are aiming for and actually harm your dog.
- Potential risks of feeding your dog raw food diet mostly include threats to humans from bacteria such an e.coli and salmonella .
- You must have critical hygiene at all times, wash your hands every time your come into contact with raw meat there is no such thing as too much cleanliness when it comes to handling raw meat, also be aware of where your are feeding your dog especially chicken try to keep it to an area / surface that is easy to clean afterwards.
- It can be more time-consuming and more expensive to transport raw meat products if traveling with your pet.
Raw or Not ?
Having waded through the mine fields of conflicting information out there, it is well known that dogs were originally meant to eat raw meat (Prey) due the shape of there teeth, jaws and there super concentrated stomach acids, I now understand why they insist on burying there lovely clean bones in the mud only to dig it up days later, it’s all to do with how enzymes and there digestive system breaks down the food.
I now feel that the Raw food diet for dogs is the best decision we have made for our Large Cane Corso puppy (Kody) as he is thriving and full of energy and mischief. I would say though that it’s worth maybe going for a quality Raw dog food provider as getting the mix correct at home can be a bit tricky there are however online calculators to assist your with ratios etc.
If your are going down the D.I.Y. route I would suggest sourcing your meat from a good quality local butcher so you know what your’re getting !!
Hopefully my research so far has prompted you to consider whether a raw food diet for your dog is the right choice for you and your furry friend.