The Benefits of a Raw and Natural Diet

Guest Blog Post by Dev | Winston & Porter - Canine and Equine Health Supplements

 

Your Wolf in Dog's Clothing

So you have sourced a new freezer, sharp knives, plastic containers, scales, scissors, mixing bowls, and a meat grinder! Don't worry, you haven't turned into a serial killer . . . . . you have decided to feed a raw natural diet to your dog.

Probably one of the best decisions you could make.  After cleansing your mind of the dog food manufacturer's propaganda claiming to be 'complete and balanced' (some are and are very good of course), you can now revert back to an ancient diet for your dog that is as relevant today as it has ever been.

Our dogs are all wolves of course! Little wolves, medium wolves, big wolves, hairy wolves, fat wolves, thin wolves, and curly wolves. There is a large variety of man and woman's best friend, but they are all just different kinds of wolves. And they all share one thing in common. Their digestive system.

Don't worry, your dog is not going to become a vicious wild animal just because they are on a raw diet, just a whole lot healthier! 

Wolf and Dog

 

Can My Dog Become Ill From Eating Raw Meat?

All I will say is, you should use the same care and attention to cleanliness and hand washing as you would if you were handling raw meat to prepare a meal for yourself or someone else. Studies have been carried out by leading vets into E.Coli and Salmonella poisoning from feeding raw meat to dogs and cases are rare.  

You should only buy fresh meat and freeze the portions that are not going to be eaten straight away. Your dog's stomach is very different from yours and they contain a lot of different bacteria to deal with the threat of food poisoning.

Dog food manufacturers are not always transparent about ingredients and more importantly the preparation process and the impact that has on the vitamins and minerals they claim to include. As consumers, we believe we are doing our best for our dog by buying known brands who claim to be filled with all of the vitamins and minerals a dog needs to lead a full and active life.

Unfortunately, the vitamins and minerals required to keep a dog healthy and prevent disease are often cost-prohibitive to include in regular dog food at the levels needed, so are added in at token levels or not at all. The balance of vitamins, minerals, and amino acids is very important to produce the desired effect, too low levels are completely counterproductive. Some of the ingredients that claim to be included are useless without a binding agent and often these are not included as they are too expensive. 

To put it simply…one ingredient without the necessary bind agent/amino acid…will simply be excreted by the dog and all goodness wasted.

 

gsd laying in the sun

 

The process of producing commercial pet food, wet or dry involves heating to extreme temperatures to meet the preservative requirements and mass production. This practice destroys most if not all of the vitamins and minerals that may have been naturally occurring or added into the product.

As a result, the original recipe is very much changed in terms of nutritional content from the start of production to the end product. Many of the amino acids, vitamins, and minerals are lost in the intense heat or are rendered useless to the dog.  Many companies are afraid of being explicit about the ingredients included in their products for fear of being exposed or having their formulation copied, but where does that leave you as the consumer, trying to make an informed decision about the nutritional welfare of your dog? 

Dogs need 37 essential vitamins and minerals for optimum health and many of the commercially produced foods do not come anywhere near this amount. Even a raw food diet is unlikely to achieve the optimum amount of vitamins and minerals in the correct amounts but is as close as you will get. However, making the change from commercial to the raw way is a good move.

If you feel that your dog will not get what they need from a raw food diet then you can always feed them a top-quality supplement to make up the difference. Protein is what the majority of a dog's diet should be made up of, and the staple diet of a carnivore. The benefits include good tissue health, a strong immune system, and a healthy coat and skin. 

Proteins are mainly found in meat, fish, eggs, and dairy.  Some proteins are also found in seeds, vegetables, and grain.

 sardines - no background

Best Complete Protein Is Found In:

Red Meat

Poultry

Organ Meat

Cultured dairy (yogurt, cottage cheese)

Eggs

cracked raw egg

Types of meat 

Muscle Meat

This is basically flesh and does not include bone, such as

Beef Heart

Lamb's Heart

Ground Turkey

Ground Lamb

Rabbit

Chicken Hearts And Gizzards

Fish (fillet)

Turkey Hearts

Tongue

Wild Game (venison, Goat, Ostrich)

Ground Chicken And Ground Beef

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Organ Meat

Beef Liver And Kidney

Chicken Liver

Lamb Liver And Kidney

Turkey Liver And Pork Liver

 

Muscle and organ meats should be included in your dog’s diet, raw or cooked.

You can also include Raw Meaty Bones, and these should always be raw (not cooked) as it is dangerous to feed cooked bones.

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Weights and Feeding

You should feed according to the weight of your dog. I would start by feeding about two to three percent of his or her weight, split over two meals. Remember, larger dogs may need less than this and smaller dogs may need a bit more as smaller dogs tend to have faster metabolisms. Please do not overfeed, as we all know it can have a negative impact on their digestive systems and is the main cause of dog obesity.

Here is a sample diet to start you off, and get you into the swing of things!

Morning

6 ounces (3/4 cup) beef heart

2 ounces (1/4 cup) beef kidney

1 egg

Evening

8-12 ounces of (1-1 and a half cups) chicken necks or backs


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You may be wondering about the best place to buy your raw diet ingredients. Supermarkets are pretty good for most of the meat but you might want to strike up a relationship with your local butcher too. I'm a big believer in helping local businesses and the service and price will probably be better with the butcher in the long run anyway.

So, Good Luck -I am sure your dog will thank you in ways you probably can't imagine.

 

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"Our Mission is to Provide Top Quality Dog Supplements at Affordable prices!"

"At Winston and Porter, we believe that all dogs deserve the best. Our dogs are members of the family and we strive to be the people they think we are!

First and foremost we are Dog lovers and as owners of much-loved Dogs, we want them to be happy and active for as long as they possibly can.

We get precious little time with our Dogs, the average life span is 12.8 years. Our aim is to ensure that each one of those years is spent healthy, free from dog cancer, dog diabetes, dog obesity, dog arthritis and any other ailments that affect our four-legged friends….we would like to think that we could help to extend that life span…."

Bibliography

Raw & Natural Nutrition for Dogs:

The Definitive Guide to Homemade Meals, L Olson, 2010.

Wikipedia 2016

 

 

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