Updated: Mar 22, 2020
Feeding your dog a raw diet, or even a partially raw diet, can extend his life and lower your vet bills
But feeding RAW is not as easy as buying some meat from your grocery store and dropping it in your dog's food dish.
Feeding a balanced raw diet involves some planning and preparation. In addition to high quality muscle meat, dogs also need edible bone, OFFAL, and raw meaty bones.
Muscle meat is from the body of an animal. Muscle meat is from the very same cuts of meat that YOU eat. Some parts of the body that contain muscle meat could include legs, thighs, breasts, haunches, and shoulders. Muscle meat should make up 80% of your dog's balanced raw diet.
Bone? That is edible? Yes! Also known as "Raw Meaty Bones." A crucial part of a successful, balanced raw diet is edible bone. Without edible bone your dog will develop loose stool and mineral deficiencies. Raw bones do not splinter, they crumble. Raw bones are also 100% digestible and will pass through your dog's system with ease. Our favorite edible bone comes from chicken wings, chicken legs and thighs, chicken necks, and chicken paws.
There is another extremely important benefit to Raw Meaty Bones... healthy teeth and gums! Raw meaty bones and edible bones will clean your dog's teeth more effectively than anything "human made" on the market.
Click here to learn more.
In the wild wolves eat the internal organs of the animals that they kill. These organs, or, "offal," provide the final vital nutrients for a balanced raw diet. If you are feeding meat and edible bone, but not offal, your dog is going to develop serious deficiencies over time. They will not develop right away. But once you notice deficiency symptoms, it is often too late. Offal ingredients for a balanced, raw diet need to come from secreting organs such as the liver and kidneys. The heart, for example, is not a secreting organ and counts as muscle meat.
Fruits, Veggies, and Grains
These ingredients are not a part of a balanced, raw diet. Sure, you can certainly offer them! However, a dog absolutely does not need these ingredients. In the wild, wolves will consume these things if they are starving and are unable to hunt. Dogs are able to digest fruits, vegetables, and grains because during the domestication process they were fed these items in the form of "scraps," agricultural waste and by-product, and kitchen waste. However, this does not indicate that dogs need these ingredients in order to have a healthy, balanced, raw diet.
What about a home cooked diet?
Home cooked diets are not a good idea. Most people think that they can boil chicken, rice, and veggies and call it balanced. After reading this article so far, can you see how this diet is NOT balanced? Home cooked diets are missing two essential parts of a balanced raw diet: edible bone and offal. Cooking bone makes it very dangerous for dogs to ingest, as cooking bone makes it brittle and splinter. Cooking meat and organs kills the living enzymes that aid in digestion and nutrient absorption. We absolutely DO NOT recommend home cooked diets.
We know that a balanced raw diet is the best diet you can offer to your dog
Not quite ready to take the plunge?
Here are some awesome products from a few of our partners that can help you enhance your dog's ultra premium kibble diet.
Please read this article by BARF to learn more about a completely balanced raw diet: Click here
We, Rebecca Creek Retrievers, choose to feed a balanced diet of ultra premium kibble with raw supplementation. We choose this feeding program for many reasons, including convenience as well as cost.
It is important for dog owners to understand their options and educate themselves on what is best for their individual dogs. Please do your own research and talk to your veterinarian about what is best for your dog!
Happy trails and wagging tails,
Liza Marie Moon
Rebecca Creek Retrievers