Dogs and cats, like many other canines and felines, have a solid digestive system. Although you might not know this, a raw diet plan is far more beneficial for your canine best friend as compared to pre-cooked meals. Cats and dogs get all the nutrients they need from the raw cat food diet plan, a reason it would be advisable to consider making the switch (if you haven’t already). It is also worth noting that cooking foods may denature some of the essential nutrients required for the dog’s optimal health. It is also worth noting that a raw diet helps promote healthier teeth, digestive health, and better skin and coat.
How To Introduce/Feed Raw Food
A complete commercial kibble provides your dog with a balanced and complete meal with almost all the essential nutrients and vitamins. A raw diet is much safer and healthier, reducing the risk of digestive issues or bacteria.
Raw foods are easier to prepare too. It thus reduced the time you’d need to prepare, chop, or store the foods. Proper planning is, however, crucial if looking to make the change. Some of the things to keep in mind when preparing/introducing raw food include:
Consider using a separate freezer if looking to buy meats or pre-prepared meats in bulk for your dog. Avoid freezing the dog food in the same freezer as your food. The freezer also needs to be prepped (cleaned) properly before keeping these foods in. Take the proper sanitization measures to prevent cross-contamination.
Try different types of meat. Dogs aren’t meant to survive on meat alone. An 80:10:10 ratio is recommended for optimal health and growth. This means 10% organ, 10% bone, and 80% meat/eggs/fish/vegetables for its meal plan. You might also want to get different meat varieties, say beef, chicken meat, fish, etc., as these contain varying amounts of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. Some meats may be rich or deficient in copper, zinc, or vitamin d and E, a reason mixing them up would be a good idea. Serving different foods makes it possible to get all the nutrients it needs for healthy growth.
Dogs only eat between 2-3% of their body weight daily. In other words, a 50-pound dog can only have 1.25 pounds of raw food per day. These should be split in two as well.
Handpick your bones: Bones with meat are the best for your canines. This includes lamb ribs, turkey legs, chicken legs, and necks. Beef femurs and marrow bones aren’t recommended, as these can lead to broken teeth and may also splinter. Bones are an essential source of calcium and should never be overlooked. Eggshells are another excellent alternative for supplementing calcium.
Always go for secreting organs for your dog. Kidneys, the liver, and the spleen are the most recommended for canines and carnivores as they are rich in multivitamins and minerals. Muscle meats, tongue, lungs, and heart should however make the bulk of the meal.
A good fish serving per week would be a wise idea too. Fish and other seafood are good sources of essential omega-fatty acids.
Unknown to many, dogs, too, do enjoy vegetables and fruits. These are the most abundant and excellent sources of microminerals and vitamins, most of which aren’t present in meats. While essential, veggies and fruits should only account for 10% of the dog’s diet plan.
The best thing about raw dog food is that they are easy to prepare. There are also plenty of complete frozen diets and complete raw foods to choose from in the market. Introducing kibble gradually would also be advisable, primarily if they weren’t fed raw foods before. Be sure to include probiotics and prebiotics for a healthy gut too.