somewhere between commercial dog food and BARF

Dog Food Advisor Forums Diet and Health somewhere between commercial dog food and BARF

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  • #68976 Report Abuse

    Eugene L
    Member

    Hi guys,

    This is my first post. Greetings to all.

    I have an Akita which have a pretty sensitive stomach. We have tried some “high range” dog food and BARF. There are some pros and cons between the two.

    commercial dog food : consistent nutrition amount, easy to feed and storage. But you have no control on the source of the raw product or additive.

    BARF : total control of the source and raw product. But making consistent nutrition value each meal is not easy, feeding is more messy and storage is a huge problem as all the cooking, freezing, thawing creates complication on contamination and rotting. Bones are sometimes not recommended if your puppy do not chew properly.

    I am thinking of a solution that have the best of both world.
    First Dehydrating the meat, bone and veg product that rots easily. Then mill them to fine grains so each meal can be a cup of meal mix and 1/4 cup of veg fix or something like that. mix the powder with rice or pumpkin puree when feeding. Is it a good idea?

    So comparing to BARF, no more freezing and thawing, you just need some rice/pumpkin available which is much more easier. Less chance of contamination as very low water content and can be easily stored. All we need to do is dehydrating a large batch of ingredient and milling them like each month.

    Any thoughts on that?

    #68987 Report Abuse

    Akari_32
    Member

    It’s very easy to ensure your dog gets a proper diet on a raw diet. You just have to do the calculations right. Better yet, each and every meal does not have to completely balanced. The concept is to balance over time. I makes life much simpler. For example, if I were to balance each and every meal for my 7.8 pound dog, he would get less than one half of an ounce of bone at every meal. He’d totally choke on that (not the brightest of creatures)! Instead, he gets a decent sized chicken bone a few days a week.

    Also, I feel it’s hard to ensure they are getting everything by using veggies rather than organs. Dogs to not fully digest plant matter, even when it’s cooked and puréed, but they do digest the organs, which is where they get all of their neccessary vitamins and minerals.

    (Most) Dogs are perfectly capable of handling “questionable” meat. Their stomach acid has such a low ph that not much can survive in there. I know many raw feeders up north bring carcasses into their yards and let their dogs eat off of it until all eatable parts are gone. There is where knowing your dog comes in, and knowing what they can handle and what they like.

    The only down side I find to making up raw meals for my dog and cat is the freezer space. We do not have the room available for even a small freezer, so the humans and animals share a freezer. This isn’t a problem with most people, though.

    The problem with what you are suggesting is that your idea is really not that much better than kibble. Dogs to not need rice, or pumpkin, or any veggies. Sure many dogs like these things, but they are of little value as far as nutrition goes. If you were to just dehydrate meat and organs, that would be different. So long as bones were also offered, that is. Bones are neccessary because they provide glucosamine and calcium, among other things. They can be replaced with bone meal, egg shell, or a calcium suppliment, but then you loose the added “work out” and teeth cleaning benefit when the dog chews them. Also, unpreserved dehydrated meat does go bad, and would need to frozen and used from the fridge. So there’s still that.

    It is an interesting idea, you just aren’t quite looking at the whole picture. 🙂

    #68988 Report Abuse

    puppypiles
    Member

    If you’re interested in making your own food or dehydrating it, I suggest looking at http://www.dogaware.com/articles/newsdiet.html#recipestudy. It’s an article about the research and nutrient deficiencies in homemade diets, and links to where you can get supplementation.

    I also agree with Akari in that feeding a purely raw (especially PMR) is easy if your calculations are correct. The very basic rule of thumb with dogs is 80% muscle meat, 10% bone, and 10% organs, with 5% of that being liver, and the other 5% being another secreting organ, such as kidneys or pancreas.

    #69004 Report Abuse

    Naturella
    Member

    Akari, sorry to butt in here, but I have really been thinking about switching Bruno to raw next year or so, when his food supply is out… Or when hubs feel like we can “afford” it. I did the math, and he would need just under 3 lbs of meat/bone/organ per week if I am giving 2.75% of his body weight in raw, which is not terrible.

    So, my question is, did you stop using a premix? Do you feed just solely raw now?

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 7 months ago by  Naturella.
    #69009 Report Abuse

    Akari_32
    Member

    Hey girl! No, I do not use a premix any more. SSLL going off the market (however temporarily) is what finally convinced me to dive in and do balanced raw. I’m happy I did. Bentley loves it, and he eats even less than he did on SSLL. The best thing is I can get away with buying chicken parts because the excess bones I just remove and freeze for later when something like pork tenderloin goes on sale and I need it 🙂 Makes deal shopping really worth while! Publix always has leg quarters for $1.49/lb when you buy 4 lb or more.

    #69023 Report Abuse

    Eugene L
    Member

    Thanks for the comments.
    The problem i am facing is, as Akari said, storage space in freezer.
    I live in Hong Kong, our apartments are tiny and your master bedroom might be my whole apartment. So for BARF i have to go shopping for food every 3days or so.
    That’s why i want to dehydrate all the meat, bones and organs and mill it down for easy storage. As those material have not go thru those immense heat like the kibble does so the nutrient is preserved and i know the source of the material.
    I add pumpkin is just for helping my puppy as he always have loose poo.

    #69026 Report Abuse

    Akari_32
    Member

    It would still need to be frozen, and then refrigerated during use, but it should take up considerably less space, in theory.

    #69031 Report Abuse

    Eugene L
    Member

    i thought dehydrated food can be store in a vacuum bag in room temperature. Am i wrong?
    Cos i store my dehydrated chicken breast as treats for my Akita in a sealed bag.
    I dont tend to store for like 30 days. Just a week or two will do.

    And for the bone for cleaning teeth aspect, i tend to stay away from giving him a whole bone as last time there is a sharp fragment come loose and he did not chew properly before swallowing it. Luckily the vet saw the bone is very near the anus so can be removed without surgery. But He still ends up having diarrhea for 3 days as the sharp bone scratched his GI tract…><

    #69034 Report Abuse

    Naturella
    Member

    Akari, so good to know! Yeah, I will see where we are with Bruno when his current food supply goes down. I am starting to job-hunt for full-time jobs that start in May, so come May, I am praying for a salary… LoL. Then we have to move with the hubs in June – no more roommate – yay! And once we settle in the new place (soooo hoping for a house, but I may be reaching here, lol) and the budget is redone, I will see when, if, and how we can put doggers on raw. OR… get another doggers!!! I hope these 2 degrees get me good cash moneys! 😀

    Sorry for hijacking, Eugene, but I do second Akari’s sentiments that dehydrated still has to be frozen/refrigerated, that dogs don’t necessarily need fruits and veggies found in BARF, and that it will probably indeed take a little less space. So try it out, see how it works out! Make sure you grind the bone really fine though – you don’t want splinters or a choking hazard.

    #69037 Report Abuse

    Eugene L
    Member

    No worries Naturella. always good to know more info and how other dog owner do it.

    #69057 Report Abuse

    Akari_32
    Member

    You could try making a small batch, and leaving out at room temp, and then checking at various intervals (such as every 24 hours, or 48 hours), using the good old fashioned sniff test.

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