This guest post is by Jacques Duplantier an advocate of raw food based on the positive changes that it produced in his own pup. If you would like to experiment with feeding raw food, we urge you to keep your vet in the loop and please be sure to follow proper sanitation precautions since you will not be killing bacteria with the heat of cooking.
What is a raw food diet? Should I be interested?
A raw pet food diet is exactly what it sounds like. The recipes consist of a large portion of human-grade raw meat, along with pet-friendly vegetables. They are made in small batches to keep everything fresh. You might be thinking, “Ew, I don’t want to grind up raw meat,” and I don’t blame you – but just think of how much joy your pets bring you. They’re definitely worth it!
We were first introduced to raw food to help our lovable mutt, Corrina, who was diagnosed by her vet with a severe food allergy. We tried many different specialty commercial foods, but none could rid her of the symptoms that made her miserable.
At our wit’s end, we finally visited a holistic vet who suggested that the only way for Corrina to live a fulfilled life was to make her food out of human-grade ingredients and preferably serve it to her raw. We followed the vet’s instructions and saw unbelievable changes in Corrina. It sounds cliché, but she truly was a different dog.
Is It Right For My Pet?
The raw food diet makes a huge difference for Corrina. It eliminated her allergies almost immediately, which reduced her stress, helped her sleep more soundly, & gave her more energy. That being said, raw feeding is not a panacea, nor does it make sense for all pets in all situations.
Deciding to switch to a raw food diet is big decision and one that we recommend you consider discussing with your vet. Some vets are still very skeptical of raw feeding, but the reality of the benefits vs risks has opened up many vets to allow pet owners to make their own nutritional decisions.
Breaking the “scoop and serve” mentality is part of our goal when we tell Corrina’s story. Deciding whether or not your pet’s diet is complete and balanced should be an active and meaningful decision you make.
Transitioning To A Raw Diet
Most pets will make the transition easily and comfortably with very few noticeable differences aside from all the benefits you will see. It still is best practice to slowly introduce new food to your pet’s diet. Start with a small amount and mix it with their current food to test for any reaction. Over a period of 2-3 days slowly introduce more and remove more of the old food with each feeding. If after 2-3 days of mixing, and if you feel comfortable with the transition, you are all set to go all in.
Raw Food Recipe
If you’re ready to give raw feeding a try, here’s a great recipe:
1 1/2 cups raw chopped meat
1/2 cup raw frutis and vegetables (carrots, celery, apples are generally popular with pups)
2 tsp fish oil
Vitamin/mineral supplement as package directs (many choices available at pet stores)
Mix well. Divide into portions and put each portion into a locking plastic bag and either refrigerate or freeze. The reason you want to separate into portions immediately is to keep from introducing bacteria by scooping at each meal.
Refrigerate enough for 5-7 days at the most. If you have more portions, freeze them.
A normal, healthy, active dog eats about 2% of his body weight per day so judge accordingly.
Bon appétit, pup!
Jacques Duplantier owns Corrina’s Corner in Decatur, GA -- a raw pet food processor and delivery service. He switched his own pup, Corrina, to a raw food diet years ago, and she responded so well that he was regularly asked what the secret was. You can learn more by subscribing to his blog.
Equally important for your pup's health is regular exercise. If you want help providing sufficient exercise for your dog, click on Barklay to the left and we will get in touch with you about dog walking.