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Raw feeding 

Excerpts taken from Ann ridyards book ~ the dogs dinner
 
This is a biologically appropriate method of feeding for carnivores using raw meat and bones. We have to remember our pet dogs are carnivores. 
Carnivores are designed to eat raw meat and bones. .
 
If we chose to ignore what our dogs are capable of digesting and processing, we leave them at huge risk of becoming sick and developing diet related complaints.
When we feed a raw diet, made up of raw meat and bone, we are supplying the dog with a diet he can digest and process, as this is the diet Mother Nature designed for him.   
By feeding a raw diet, we can prevent our dogs from developing a huge array of diet related complaints.
We can also ease the suffering of a dog. who is pre-disposed to developing genetic illness, by simply changing his diet to raw.  
 
The raw diet is seen by many as a 'miracle cure' and owners new to raw marvel at the improvements to their dog's health once they have been swapped over to a raw method of feeding.  
More importantly, if you are lucky enough to have a commercially fed dog who is not displaying any diet related complaints, which are associated with commercial feeding - when you swap him to raw, you remove the possibility that even though he may be healthy now, the odds are stacked against him remaining so. By swapping him to raw BEFORE he gets sick, you can stack the odds of him remaining healthy, he will then thrive, not merely survive.  
 
If you are seriously thinking about changing your dog over to a raw diet here is a guide of what to feed and how much to feed ~
 
THE RATIO THIS DIET SHOULD BE FED IN IS:
 
 70-80% MEAT : 10-20% BONE : 10% ORGAN MEAT
 
 As you can see most of the diet should be meat, a smaller percentage should be raw bone and the remainder is sourced from vital organ meat, such as heart, liver & kidney, as these are the richest in nutrients of all organ meats.
Attention should be paid to the ratios to ensure that your dog is receiving enough nutrition.  Foods can be takes from many animals, both wild and domestic.
The more variety you can create within the diet, the better and more nourishing your dogs raw diet will be.  Fat and skin attached to meat and bones is also important to a dog, but avoid feeding large amounts of anything, instead go for everything in moderation.  
 
Examples ~
 
RAW CHICKEN AND TURKEY
Many raw diets start with chicken or turkey as their base -  it is usual for a newly swapped dog to remain on this for a week or so before the introduction of other proteins.  
Every single part of a raw chicken may be fed to a dog,  it can be fed in any form as follows: 
 
Chicken/turkey wings
Whole birds
Meaty portions containing bone
Breast
Chicken/turkey legs/thighs/drumsticks
Chicken carcasses/necks/backs
Chicken feet
Some pet food companies sell bags of poultry hearts and in some supermarkets you will find chicken liver on sale 
Raw minced chicken/turkey   
 
Whilst most raw poultry bones are extremely soft and safe to feed to dogs, please be aware that there is a bone which runs through a turkey drumstick, or leg, some owners may want to remove prior to feeding, if they are concerned, as these bones can splinter and are quite tough.  May Owners however do feed the bone and have never experienced any problems. 
 
GREEN TRIPE, BEEF, LAMB OR  VENISON 
 
 Possibly one of the most nutritious meals you may ever feed your dog, it comes whole, in lumps or minced on it's own or with another protein such as heart or chicken........make sure to include it in your dog's diet, twice a week, more if you feed more than once a day.
 
RAW RABBIT
 
In my opinion one of the wonder foods you can feed your dog and if that rabbit is whole, or whole portioned and wild caught, then so much the better.
Again, every single part of the rabbit can be used, it can be served skinned and gutted, or with fur in its natural state.  Rabbit mince is often available from pet food retailers of the raw diet.
Harder to source than a chicken but worth the effort for it sheer nutritional value.
 
VITAL ORGAN MEAT
 
 Should make up approx 10% of the overall diet, heart and liver or kidney should be fed in small quantities regularly.  You can take them from any animal you like from rabbit to chicken, sheep to cow in fact the more variety you can achieve, the better.
 
RAW LUNG - ANY VARIETY
Lung, also know as lights, can be fed as part of a raw diet.  It is one of those items that falls into a grey category when trying to decide if it is an organ, or if it should be fed as part of the meat consumption. 
You can often get lung from your local butcher and it is used in many pet minces.
All of the lung can be fed, including bronchial tubes and membrane.
 
GAME BIRDS
Any variety you are fortunate enough to be able to source, every bit can be fed, either portioned or in minced form, online compainies now provide minced duck, pheasant etc.
 
RAW VENISON
Venison is a fantastic addition when you can source it, some companies will provide seasonal minces and raw meaty bones. If you are lucky enough to be able to include it in your dog's diet, every bit can be fed. 
 
RAW BEEF 
Beef is a great addition to the raw diet and can be fed in most forms, from tripe to organs, meat to mince. 
The only thing that should be given caution is the feeding of beef bones, this includes all types, not just the big knuckles.
They are too dense to be a good diet choice and will wear down your dog's teeth and could even crack one, please stick with the other bones recommended such as lamb, pork, poultry and rabbit instead.  
Beef bones are OK for pups who are teething, they have no hope of making an impression on the bone itself but will ease their aching gums trying, once they have their adult teeth through - no more beef bones !!
Veal ribs, if very soft and young are acceptable, as is oxtail, when served in large chunks.  
 
RAW PORK
Pork is a useful addition to the diet and all of the pig can be fed.  From liver to bones.
Some dogs may get a reaction to pork and so introduce it slowly into the diet and monitor your dog.
 
RAW LAMB 
Again, every single part of a raw lamb may be fed to a dog, in some cases, the dog may be allergic to chicken, this is not something that happens a lot, but it can happen, in this case the bulk of your diet could be derived from lamb and fed in the following forms:
 
Meaty rib bones
Leg bones ( Even whole legs of lamb occasionally)
Breast of lamb (A big favourite with my own pack)
Lambs heart
Lambs liver ( fed in small quantities - once a week )
Minced lamb
 
RAW EGGS
Eggs should be fed about twice a week, the really valuable part being the yolk and shell.  Shells can be crushed into minced meats. 
If possible it is always better to feed the egg complete, including the white, some dogs may not like the texture of egg white and you may need to build towards feeding it as a whole food.
 
RAW FISH
Is a vitally important element in the raw diet because of its Omega 3 content.  Whole oily fish is best, but it can also be found in a minced form from the retailers of the raw diet.  
A really good choice is tiny sprats, fill your freezer up when in season. 
Right through to the larger variety, such as trout.
 
 
For a more detailed look into the benefits of raw feeding take a look at the dogs dinner website ~
 

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