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Raw Advice

- - - - - advice help diet bone content

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3 replies to this topic

#1
GSDguy

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Hello, I am hoping that I could get some advice on our diet.  

 

Background:

As of now we are 4 weeks into our Raw diet. We have 2 German shepherds one black and tan the other sable. The Black and Tan is having trouble adjusting, loose/firm stool the other doesnt seem to mind.  I have mostly fed chicken quarters, transitioned to turkey necks and now am having them eat turkey legs, chicken backs and pork shoulder.  I serve them about 2-3lb (we are also transitioning to 1 meal a day). Today I fed 1 chicken back 1 turkey leg and added pork to reach 3lb. No organs yet.

 

Question 1:

is there an easy way to measure out bone percentages, and is 10% critical? 

 

Question 2:

chicken quarters are ideal for me since they are so cheap. however, they have too high of a bone content.  If there was any advice on how to make up the rest of the muscle meat? As of now I have my eye on beef heart since its $1.60/lb seems most boneless meat is about $2/lb.

 

Question 3:

Are there any supplements that I should be giving? If so what do you recommend?

 

Question 4:

What budget would should I expect to be at? both dogs are between 80-90lb.

 

Question 5:

Any advice you would give?

 

 

Thank you in advance, 

GSDguy



#2
TRDmom

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Welcome! I'm sure your GSDs are happy you've made the switch to a raw diet. :) I know it can be a bit worrisome trying to make sure you're providing the right portions and types of food for them, but the longer you're at it, the easier it becomes.

 

Re: question 1-- there is no real easy way other than "eye balling" it for a rough estimate.

 

Re: Q 2 -- Beef heart would be good to balance out the bone in the chicken quarters.

 

Re: Q3 -- If you're not feeding a lot of grassfed meat (most people don't), then offer fish oil. I have salmon oil capsules that I offer mine; they like to eat them like treats (the cat gets one, the dog (Great Pyrenees) gets about 6).

 

Re: Q4 -- budget depends on what is available in your area, what kind of meat you're willing to feed (i.e. 3D meat; human-grade), and nutritional/caloric needs of the dogs. If you hunt, buy live animals and slaughter them yourself, and/or join a co-op, then you can keep costs lower. If you're into human-grade/organic/store-bought, then your costs will run much higher. Your geographic location also affects availability and cost. I would estimate about $100 per month for both dogs, but it can run lower and higher.

 

 

Here's my general "getting started" advice:

 

PMR ratios are 80% muscle meat/10% bone/10% organ. You may need to adjust these ratios slightly as each dog’s needs differ to some degree. Some people feed “balance over time” (i.e. over the course of a week), whereas others balance out the correct ratio for each meal.

 

At least three meats in the rotation--but more is better. Red meats are also supposed to be more nutritious. Start with one protein (whatever is readily available) and add another when you feel your dog is ready (e.g. every other day or week).

 

Make sure to give liver at around 5% of diet (either feed weekly or daily). This can be from any species. You may offer small amounts (e.g. bite-sized pieces) from the start to gradually build your dog up to the recommend amount.

 

Chicken feet (and duck, if you can find them) are a good source of glucosamine and chondroitin (for joint health).

 

For conventionally raised meat (like you get at the grocery store), offer some salmon oil or oily fish (e.g. mackerel) to the diet for omega-3 fatty acid to help balance the omega-6. Too much omega-6 in the diet can cause inflammation, hence the need to balance it. Grass-fed meat animals have a better omega-3/omega-6 ratio which shouldn't require supplementation.

 

Further Reading:

Work Wonders by Dr. Tom Lonsdale

Raw and Natural Nutrition for Dogs by Lew Olson, PhD

Canine Nutrigenomics by Dr. Jean Dodds


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#3
naturalfeddogs

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Hello, I am hoping that I could get some advice on our diet.  

 

Background:

As of now we are 4 weeks into our Raw diet. We have 2 German shepherds one black and tan the other sable. The Black and Tan is having trouble adjusting, loose/firm stool the other doesnt seem to mind.  I have mostly fed chicken quarters, transitioned to turkey necks and now am having them eat turkey legs, chicken backs and pork shoulder.  I serve them about 2-3lb (we are also transitioning to 1 meal a day). Today I fed 1 chicken back 1 turkey leg and added pork to reach 3lb. No organs yet.

 

Question 1:

is there an easy way to measure out bone percentages, and is 10% critical? 

 

Question 2:

chicken quarters are ideal for me since they are so cheap. however, they have too high of a bone content.  If there was any advice on how to make up the rest of the muscle meat? As of now I have my eye on beef heart since its $1.60/lb seems most boneless meat is about $2/lb.

 

Question 3:

Are there any supplements that I should be giving? If so what do you recommend?

 

Question 4:

What budget would should I expect to be at? both dogs are between 80-90lb.

 

Question 5:

Any advice you would give?

 

 

Thank you in advance, 

GSDguy

10% is a guide, some need more some less. Feed according to what your dog seems to need, and can handle.

 

Quarters are less bone than backs. I have started mine on them, and they have a pretty good meat/bone ratio. 

 

Fish oil is the only supplement you may need to give, a few times a week.

 

Overall, the more variety you can feed the better. All dogs are a little different, so feed according to how they seem to handle different stuff, and activity level as well. Feed mostly meat (80%), some bone (10%), and some organ (10%). Remember, each dog is an individual with individual needs. 



#4
Spy Car

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Hey GSDguy,

 

From my perspective (which is in line with our current best understanding of veterinary nutritional science) it is quite important to approximate the 10% target. Very bad things can happen to dogs (and especially developing puppies) when the proper calcium:phosphorus ratios in the diet are not met. Imbalances can cause catastrophic health consequences.

 

However, it is not difficult to "eye-ball" percentages if one becomes acquainted with the bone percentages of frequently served bone-in pieces and one keeps a rough accounting of meat , bone, and organs in the diet. To make things easier for me, I try as best I'm able to balance individual meals, and to keep compensation for a bone-heavy or bone-light meal something that's done at the next feeding.

 

Others follow more of a balance over time model, which would not work for me on a mental accounting basis. Whatever works.

 

But do seek to get close to PRM ratios. You don't need elaborate spreadsheets. But knowing bone percentages and amounts of meat and bone (and organs) in the diet is wise in my estimation. It becomes second nature (has for me anyway) to be able to approximate 10% bone, and feeding on target is a lot less stress than worrying if I'm drifting away from meeting a nutritional balance.

 

Good luck,

 

Bill







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