Muppet's Mainly Raw Diet - 6 Weeks In
The Muppet is well into her 2nd month of eating mainly raw food and doing very well. Because she is a healthy dog, I didn't expect to see much difference changing her diet.
I'm not new to raw feeding. My old Staffy and Jack Russel were fed raw for most of their lives. Murphy the Staffy had allergy issues - he'd get cysts, abcesses and unknown lumps and bumps regularly. We had several surgically removed.
Despite trying a range of diets and changing foods at the time on the advice of the vet, nothing seemed to work. We switched to making our own food - cooked meat at first because we're human and that's what we thought best. Raw after a few months of reading up - that was back in 1996/97.
Needless to say Murphy's "allergies" cleared up, not a lump, bump or abcess for years - he started getting them again a few months before he passed away aged 16 but his normal diet was dried food again (and had been for a couple of years) due to financial reasons.
Bud the JRT was also fed raw and thrived on it - again an old man when he passed away at aged 17.Back to The Muppet
I was aware that I was feeding Muppet crap on dried food, but thought I couldn't afford the switch. Raw feeding became very expensive with Bud and Murphy over the years, particularly during and after the BSE crisis and butchers stopped giving away or providing scraps, off-cuts and bones at low cost.
It came to a head when I visited my friend in Suffolk with Muppet. She didn't eat the day we travelled or the day after. As her body purged what was left in her gut - well that's far to much info but it wasn't pretty, "normal" looking or smelling.
My friend raw feeds her dog and is fortunate to have great local suppliers. Since raw feeding is become more accepted, there are options other than the butchers.
I costed it up. I spent around £3 per week feeding Muppet on dried food. It's cheap and convenient.
There isn't a local raw food supplier around here and to ship in minimum spends start at £20 and delivery costs at around £7-10.
Local pet store don't stock raw minces/meat, but Pets at Home do - and we have a huge one in Widnes.
I bought 3kg frozen minced beef at £5, 5 packs of frozen meat (chicken, turkey, tripe, 2 fish) between 89p and 1.09, call it £5. A pack of frozen chicken thighs/wings from the market £5. Ribs on whoopsie £1.20, 2 pigs liver on whoopsie 50p. Veg, fruit, live yoghurt, eggs and rice I already had in anyway - so I've rounded the lot up to £20
Yes, a little more expensive at £4.62 per week. Muppet is putting on weight so I have to adjust the amount fed a little.
I know raw feeding purists are probably having heart failure. I'm basing how I feed Muppet on what I learnt feeding Bud and Murphy. That included various veg chopped really finely, rice, "live" nutrients such as yoghurt and brewers yeast.
I've been thinking about the rice, it was mainly a "filler". Obviously Muppet doesn't need it so this month I've cut it out.
In the bowl you'll see one of the home-made mixes. This one is around 70% mince and the rest is finely chopped (in the food processor) white cabbage, romaine lettuce, spinach and an apple. Portions of this will be fed stuffed into a hollow bone thing so she has to work at it getting it out and served with with either chicken thigh, a couple of wings or ribs.
The mince is frozen and not defrosted before mixing. I split into portion sizes and pop it back in the freezer.6 weeks of mainly raw
I say mainly raw as Muppet still has cooked scraps (don't judge me) and we discovered very quickly she won't eat raw liver even chopped up small. Liver has lots of b vitimins and is classed as an essential in a raw diet - it explains why the brewers yeast was used in Bud and Murphy's diet! So I dried the remaining liver on a very low oven and used it as treats.
Muppet has put on weight! I've cut out the rice - as it's mainly a filler and has little/no nutritional value. Dogs have a short gut so don't process grains or other carbs well (hence chopping up the veggies).
On the good side (sorry, I'm talking poo again) she's much more regular, it doesn't smell as much either.
Her coat has become really glossy and vibrant. As you can see in the pic she's bright eyed and bushy tailed.
She still steals socks and chews out the toes... BUT she doesn't "eat" them - which was always a worry. Now we just have shredded sock to clean up.
She's burbing a lot less and her breath doesn't stink.
While she still has had the odd Diva Dog episode, she seems a lot more content. Plus she loves dinner time - she no longer graze feeds.
The mainly raw diet will be staying. Over the coming months I'll read up more about it and the veggies/no veggies debate.
I would love to feed organic, free-range meat, but that is definately for another time - finances and availability come into play.
I should have a Diva Dog Blog so I can track Muppets progress eating raw!
Oh and yes, I am veggie feeding raw meat to my dog. She's a dog, she's not designed by nature to be veggie. #rawdogfood #rawfeeding