Yes! Dogs are designed to eat raw food diets. They have shorter digestive tracts and their stomachs have a much higher acidity level than humans, which makes them easily able to consume and thrive on the BARF diet.
No! Food loses most of its nutritional value including enzymes and biologically active essential fatty acids once it goes through the heating process of cooking. Essential fatty acids, damaged by heat and oxygen, become slow poisons, doing irreparable damage. Cooking also produces carcinogens and anti-immunogens. Also many minerals, essential amino acids and vitamins become indigestible.
The fear of feeding bones is usually in regards to COOKED bones. Raw bones, however, are a natural source of calcium and other minerals. Coming from a natural source of calcium, the calcium obtained from ground bones is far more utilized in the body than from artificial calcium sources such as bone meal. We understand that some pet owners will still have some fears in regards to feeding their pet bones. This is why we grind the bone in our BARF products. This prevents any and all risk of choking and/or punctures while your pet still gets all the benefits of bone in their diet.
It is not recommended. Although mixing is sometimes a way to transition from commercial pet food to a raw diet, it may actually put more strain on the digestive system, as they digest at different rates. Raw food is much more digestible, taking only 3-4 hours, while the kibble usually takes 9-12 hours. Kibble is a cooked processed product that is harder for the dog to digest because the molecules are bound tighter together. When raw meat and kibble are mixed together the meat will digest, meanwhile leaving some of the kibble to rise to body temperature and ferment. The bacteria level in the dog’s digestive system will then rise and could eventually cause unwanted problems.
9 times out of 10 we recommend that you do a quick transition to BARF with your pet where you do not feed him or her 12-16 hours after to their last meal and then feed the BARF food. However, if your pet has a difficult time switching between various diets, has been known to experience digestive upset from time to time, is suffering from a degenerative disease or is a senior, a slow transition is better suited for your pet.
Puppies can start eating (or trying to eat) raw meaty even before weaning. Wings, necks or backs can be an excellent way to introduce solid food to puppies and get their little jaws used to chewing. This will prepare them for later and give some relief to the lactating mom from the puppies’ biting.
Feeding your pet a variety of 4 different proteins can cost less than you might think. An adult 25kg dog eating chicken, beef, salmon, and lamb will cost less than €2.00 per day. A smaller dog of 10kg eating the same products will cost less than €24.00 for one month.
The general rule is to handle raw food the same way you handle human raw meat.
Very often, when dogs (or people) make a switch to a more balanced, nutritious diet, they can sometimes display negative symptoms, such as (in the case of dogs) runny eyes, itchy skin, rashes and pimples, bad breath, vomiting, smelly ears. This is just a part of the healing cycle, in other words, they are mobilizing toxins, which have been stored in the cells of the body. These symptoms should pass over a period of time, usually a few days.
Dogs tend to do that. The chewing process is very different with carnivores then it is with us (or herbivores). They do not have flat molars that grind the food. Some dogs and cats will chew food only to the point where it is small enough for them to swallow and not necessarily more. Their digestive system is designed to digest bigger chunks of food than ours. If you are feeding ground raw food your dog may literally skip the chewing part and just swallow mouthfuls. The same is right for small pieces (or large dogs).
According to many vets, the focus in their studies is not nutrition but how to “fix” the pets’ health. The little instruction they are given in regards to nutrition is given by the commercial pet food companies themselves. Lack of knowledge and experience are what will usually be a vet’s reason for objecting to a raw diet. Consulting a vet who does have that kind of experience in order to get support and peace of mind, is recommended.
Variety is the spice of life and the heart and soul of a good raw diet. Each protein has different vitamins and minerals. Limiting proteins can lead to nutritional deficiencies. We suggest a minimum of 4 different proteins per month for a good balance.
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