Just wondered how many out there feed raw to their dogs. I have my 6 dogs on the raw diet for almost 2 years now and it's great! Their coats are so nice and shiny, they are healthy and not overweight at all. I also bake their treats rather than buying the junk in the stores. There is so much garbage in dog food and treats these days and when that food recall happened, I was never so happy to have my dogs on raw.

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Hi Jorge. Here's something worth knowing about bacteria and the raw food diet.

A dog's immune system is designed to handle bacteria such as Salmonella,
E.Coli and Campylobacter jejuni. It is much more adept at this than the
human body. If dogs are fed nothing but heat sterilized food, you are
depriving them of the opportunity to develop an immune response to these
and many other organisms. Handling raw foods for your dog requires the
same care as your 'human' food does. Raw food will spoil if left
unrefrigerated for an extended period of time. Excess food not eaten,
should be refrigerated for the next feeding or discarded. Keep raw meat
separate from other foods; wash working surfaces, utensils and hands
with hot soapy water after each feeding. Simple!

How to make the switch?

Some owners just go 'cold turkey' and never look back. Some dog's may
have a looser stool for a day or so...some just blend into the change
like they have always eaten this way... others are so excited about
eating now they will follow you around begging for more. Depending on
the history of your dog, you may have to make a more gradual change or
simply make the switch and go with what ever comes from it -literally!

When you are ready to begin take it slowly. Try to keep the diet simple
at first. This is particularly important for older/middle aged dogs
that have been eating a cooked diet for most of their life. Start with
chicken or turkey necks or backs only for the first couple of days and
remove any excess fat. The only other thing you might add at this point
would be some yogurt or a probiotic supplement. Keep meals small to
begin with and don't overfeed. Once the dog is digesting the raw meaty
bones, add some veggies with a bit of lean ground meat.

After a week or two, you can start adding the other foods like eggs and
offal (leaving a little bit more fat on the chicken if necessary) and
then start adding supplements if you want to. Don't do it all at once.
I would also suggest that with dogs new to the BARF diet that you stay
away from the harder or fattier bones for awhile. Give them time to
re-develop their digestive system first.

......this information from Natural Berners website
HI,
I'd like to add that if you're going to switch the dog cold-turkey to fast for 24 hours. This helps push out the old junk food before the new comes in, because the raw should travel through the tract much faster than kibble, and if there's half-digested kibble left, it could all ferment.

As for bacteria etc. What you buy in the grocery store is not necessarily fresh (carcasses are aged for several days before being cut up and shipped out); bacteria enter from 1) contamination during butchering, esp. fecal contamination; 2) contamination during processing. Initially, the muscle meat is sterile on the inside. bacteria gather on the surface; as the meat is cut up or ground, bacteria gain access to all surfaces; the more surface area (hamburg) the higher the chance of contamination. By the time you bring it home, who knows what's in it, which is why we have to have safe handling instructions and warnings. The dog's intestinal tract is made to eat meat and carrion, so you know they can handle all sorts of nasties ;-) However, a kibble-fed dog has lost a lot of the muscle tone and "good" bacteria, which is why we take it slow when introducing raw and hold off on the bones for a while. For these older dogs, probiotics and enzyme supplementation is highly recommended!
Brigitte
We feed our girls Raw as well.
I am glad to see there are others on this site that do and I am not alone here. I started them out on both when they were pups and slowly weaned them off of kibble.

I do prey only except for pumpkin and Vitamins.
I have had my dogs on raw food. I also bake my own treats for them when I find the time. However, I can't say that it added any years Tillie's life as I had a Cocker Spaniel that had the cheapest dog food (this is when I didn't know much about dogs) and then my little Shih Tzu Tillie who had the best of best raw food and she died at the same age as the Cocker which was 12 years old. I still have two on the raw diet so will see how long they live... a 13 year old and a 7 year old Shih Tzu. I do feel they are doing well on it. However the one has boughts of diahrrea occassionally.
This is all good information, but I'm hoping someone has experience with feeding raw to a dog with cancer. My Betty has an inoperable tumor that is pressing on her colon. She isn't expected to be with us much longer, but I've heard that raw feeding along with other supplements can make a difference in her physical comfort as well as give her a little more time. My concern is with the bones in raw feeding. Will she have difficulty in passing the bones? She is on a laxative, so maybe I'm worrying over nothing.
Thanks in advance for any input.

Vernon
Hi to all

I am a new groupie and follow with interest as I to have 2 puppies that I have got on a raw diet. They have puppy mince mixed with cooked vegies & cooked rice. This wasreccomended by the hollistic vet that we attend and I'm sp g;ad that we have gone this way as there coats are just so shiny and soft and healthy. I do also do lots of reading on this subject and there are many books with very good information.

I do have a couple of books that many in this group may be interested in and please do go and have a look it just may have some information that you could benefit from, like I did.

Click Here!

Click Here!

Hope these can be of help we are all just wanting the best for our 4 leg friends :-)

Hi Jorge,  

I have a new 5 1/2 month old Cavalier and my breeder recommended a natural, organic raw food diet.  I use HPPI, by Healthy Pet Products.  I use as a supplement Taste of the Wild Pacific Formula -Salmon.  I had already been reading about the raw diet for dogs, as my neighbor had been feeding her dogs for 3 yrs this way.  She has now switched to Healthy Pet Product's after she checked them out.  I have been very happy with feeding her a raw diet, especially this one as it provides a complete well balanced diet of protein, fat, fiber, moisture, vitamins, minerals, amino acids, Omega 3 & 6 and probiotics, prebiotics and full spectrum enzymes. They come in 2oz. sticks, very practical for smaller dogs.   After going to a few dog shows, I find that most show dogs are on raw diet.  Healthier, shinier coat.  I lost my first Cav. Addie in august to cancer, so doing everything to prevent illness is at the top of my list.  As far as intestinal tract.  Usually a dog will process their food about 30-45 mins. after eating, which prevents bacteria from forming.  So glad to see so many are turning to a natural way of feed.

Hi,

I am interested in some feedback.  My 7 year old toy poodle has bladder cancer.  After doing a ton of research, I decided switching her to raw would be helpful in building up her immune system so that she might better fight this monster.  She loved it and would whine every evening while I was getting her food ready.  Long story short---she's on Metacam, a Nsaid,  to help fight the cancer, and we've gotten great results so far.  But, she also has a kidney infection now - e coli based, which can be deadly, for which she is taking an anti-biotic.  Anyway the vet vehemently insists I  take her off raw for now because her immune system in compromised by the Nsaid the anti-biotics, and her system can't  handle the bacteria in raw food as well as a healthy dog might. Others have said to keep her on raw.

Any one else have to deal with a similar situation?

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