Today, many pet owners are preferring raw dog food diet than processed ones, since it is believed to be beneficial for their health.
Raw feeding eliminates components that dogs wouldn’t eat in the wild or on their own, like rice, wheat, or corn and results in decreasing poop frequency caused by these indigestible filler ingredients. It has also been seen to reduce allergies, more ideal body weights, whiter teeth, and healthier coats or fur. Many pet owners who choose to make this change can do things rashly which could do more harm than good.
So, here’s a list of what you should avoid when giving your dog a raw food diet:
- Not finding the nutritional balance
You might think that raw feeding is as simple as throwing in a whole chicken or ground beef, but dogs also need certain nutrient ratios to achieve optimal health. Feeding raw food is not just about giving dogs uncooked meals, but adding in other sources of nutrients like vegetables, supplements, organ meat, or bones.
Here are some ways to ensure that your dogs will have the right nutrients they need in raw feeding:
- Aim for your dog’s diet to have 10-25% bone material. Smaller dogs can have ground bones so it isn’t hard to chew, and larger dogs can be given meat with non-weight bearing bones like duck or chicken neck.
- Add nutrient-dense food a couple of times a week. It can vary from raw fish, pureed vegetables and fruits, raw eggs, or raw goat’s milk.
- Include a mix of vitamins and minerals, which could take some time to prepare, but can be done in larger volumes for future meals. Some of these mixtures are synthetic but can be obtained easily.
- Not having enough variety
You wouldn’t like to eat the same kind of food every day for a week, and your dog would really appreciate it if you switched around their meals too. It’s crucial to have variety in raw feeding because it’s more appetizing for your dog.
They can get the right nutrition and avoid food sensitivities. You can add variation by rotating protein sources. Pork, beef, chicken, fish, and others, can all be suitable for your dog. Barking Good provides a lot of choices for raw food and natural treats that your dogs are going to love.
- Not feeding the right amount
When buying canned or bagged dog food, there are guidelines to follow on how much should they be eating per serving. With feeding raw food, however, there are no established feeding guidelines. As a pet owner, you are responsible for figuring out how much food your dogs need in order to maintain a healthy weight. It’s not just about what to feed your dog; it’s how much you should be feeding them, too.
Here’s a guide to make sure you’re feeding them the right amounts:
- For the average adult dog, feed 2-3% of your dog’s ideal body weight on a daily basis.
- If your dog is overweight, feed a little less than the guidance above, and a little more if your dog is underweight. For example, a 20lb dog can be fed between 6.4 oz (2%) to 9.6 oz (3%) of food.
- There are some cases wherein a dog may require more food than others because of its activity, so make sure to observe if they are extremely active or playful.
- Not considering safety when feeding bones
There is a popular misconception that all dogs do well with chewing bones. Many dogs can chew raw bones without any problems, but others might have broken teeth or other oral problems. Each dog is different, and you have to ensure that the kind of bones you are feeding is suitable for them.
Here are some tips that you should remember:
- Small bones such as rib or femur bones can cause tooth fractures for a dog who is an aggressive chewer. This is because the dog can bite vertically into the bone.
- Supervise your pet when chewing on raw bone. You will also be able to see how they chew and can adjust based on their behavior.
- Remove the marrow, which is primarily fat from the bone, if your dog has poor digestion or pancreatitis to avoid diarrhea.
- Discontinue feeding raw bones if your pet has fractured teeth.
Food is one of the biggest trends in the pet industry. However, it’s crucial for your pet’s well-being that you just don’t go with what is popular, but make thorough research and get educated. If you are considering to feed them raw food, you should remember to give them a balanced meal with some varieties, in the right amount, and has considered safe feeding guidelines.