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Ok, starting on RAW. Help and suggestions please!
  • IchigoIchigo
    Posts: 190
    So Ichigo is 10 weeks old and has been on Orijen + Innova mixed for about a week and a half. His appetite has been really lacking and he seems disinterested in his kibble all the time now. I tried everything, but I believe RAW will be the answer.

    Now, I don't even know where to begin. I'd like to do kibble in the morning and RAW at night. Pre-made would be great, but it's pretty pricey and I don't have the luxury of doing 100% pre-made right now. I know Primal and Stella & Chewy's are good brands. Nature's Variety I've heard mixed opinions since it recently got bought out. What would be a good brand of pre-made that is affordable and good?

    And also, can I give him just a raw chicken thigh on top of some nuggets/patties to make the patties last longer or supplement? Should all the meat be frozen for a couple weeks before giving it to him, or is that only with certain meats?

    How should I introduce raw to him? Some say gradually is best, some do it cold turkey. But if I'm keeping him on kibble in the mornings, how do I transition his dinners if I can't mix kibble and raw?

    Sorry for all the questions. I went though a lot of past threads on raw and read what I could but still have more questions!

    You're all a tone of help, thanks so much!!!
  • SayaSaya
    Posts: 6678
    I feed prey model raw, but premade is good too. Primal and Stella & Chewy's are good brands and I think Bravo is too there's also different kind of meat/bone/ organ grinds on haretoday.com.

    It's up to you I switched Saya to full raw cold turkey she got chicken thighs, legs, breasts, and quarters for a few weeks she did fine some loose poop, but otherwise it was fine.

    I'd instead of giving him a chicken thigh with premade I'd give it alone a chicken thigh is pretty much Saya's full day meal plus some boneless meat, but she is full grown. You'll be feeding kibble too so you'll be feeding half kibble in morning and half the amount Ichi would need.

    This raw spreadsheet is a good starting point I used it when I started and now only thing I weigh is Saya's organs, but with premade it'll have feeding directions on it, but with this spreadsheet you can use it to figure out how much meat to give. With a puppy most people say feed 2% of dogs expected adult weight or 10% of current or something like that..

    http://www.dogster.com/forums/Raw_Food_Diet/thread/491589

    This link has some good info too.
    http://www.dogster.com/forums/Raw_Food_Diet/thread/431875

    Saya loves chicken quarters, lamb, deer, and beef, I also give her a whole cornish hen to work on took her a week to eat all of it and the ground bison I stuff inside of it..

    Take it slow with introducing new proteins though.

    Bella my parent's boxer gets a chicken quarter and some boneless meat once or twice a week instead of dinner and she does fine with it. She is fed wellness core ocean my parent's can't always feed her raw so I just do it once or twice..

    I know Jujee's pup is on premade raw.
    Nicole, 5year old Bella(Boxer), and 4year old Saya(Shiba inu)
  • atlasatlas
    Posts: 360
    I personally feel like Ichigo should still be eating three times a day. He's very young and needs to eat more frequently than older dogs. Also, raw is digested differently than kibble (which is why they say to go slow when transitioning) so when/if you do decide to go all (premade) raw, then I think it definitely would be best to feed the suggested amount over three meals a day for a puppy. The store where I buy my raw recommends two times a day for adult dogs.

    I actually don't find Primal premade raw to be that expensive. I sat down when I first decided to switch and I figured out how much I was paying for a months worth of food and how much I would be paying if I switched her to raw for a month's supply, and they were almost even (I think the lamb formula was slightly more expensive - which is what I was using as my "example formula"). I don't have the exact numbers anymore, sadly, but I do remember being surprised. Now, for a big dog, the price difference definitely increases and becomes more apparent (I did the same comparison for Kratos, who is 80+ lbs), but shibas stay small and therefore don't eat as much as a big dog. I find that the price of primal is comparable to kibble for them. Also the price varies based on which formula you are getting. I have done duck and lamb, but beef is the cheapest. Rabbit is surprisingly expensive. We choose to stay away from chicken because we have heard both on here and from our vet that chicken is one of the more common shiba allergies, and I'd rather not test our luck. Of course, Mitsu could wind up allergic to duck, lamb, etc. instead/as well, but since chicken is a big one we just stay away.

    I use nuggets because they are so much easier to separate over three feedings than the patties, in my opinion. I will probably go patty when Mitsu is older and only eats twice a day. I feed Mitsu a little bit of sweet potatoes with her premade raw also.

    Just so you know - I'm definitely not trying to say that primal is superior to Stella's or other brands. It's just the brand that I use and the only one I have experience with/can answer for.

    For premade, it is recommend that you transition slowly. If you are going to do a kibble/raw mix, then I think that it would be better to mix a little raw and a little kibble for each meal - just proportion out a days worth (but remember you will need less kibble depending on how much raw you use, and vice versa) and feed it over the three meals. I say this, but we actually went cold turkey. I tried to mix in kibble, but once given raw, Mitsu wanted nothing to do with kibble and ate around it, even though I mixed it in well. I wasn't too worried because Mitsu seems to have a stellar stomach and I have yet to see anything but normal stools from her. But it's really up to you and what you think Ichigo can handle.

    I can't answer about the chicken thigh because I don't (as of yet) incorporate other sources of raw into Mitsu's diet. The store where I buy my raw does have the option of ordering raw meaty bones and such but I haven't looked into ordering any yet, though I do plan on looking into it. There are others on this forum who are knowledgeable about that, though.
    Post edited by atlas at 2010-10-20 22:55:37
  • SayaSaya
    Posts: 6678
    Forgot to mention if you do buy chicken, pork or any other meat be sure it's not enhanced by broth, salt, or seasoning. It should be on the nutrition part or small print on front I think chicken that has sodium over 80% is enhanced I seen some that are pretty high up. =\

    Enhanced meat can cause loose poop due to the salt or other things I've seen beef that is even enhanced.. Luckily my local butcher and grocery are a bit better then walmart.

    Saya has had some crazy stuff lamb tongue, beef tongue, and heart. =)

    I like doing do it your self prey modal raw takes tons of research and work, but Saya is doing well on it.

    I do spend some extra $ on things like grass fed and free range meats, but I do buy from grocery or butcher when they get a good deal. I just got 10lb or so of free meat from someone I posted an ad on craigslist got a lot of deer, some beef and some pork yummy I might even got deer heart or beef heart, but it smells like deer..

    I guess the extra $ gets offset by the free meat plus I figure Saya will be more healthier down the road as she gets older.

    I also feed her two or three times a week a chicken foot for natural source of glucosamine and condrotine, Thighs and legs got some of it, but the feet got a bit more and Saya likes them I feed them frozen.

    If your dog is allergic to chicken there's also duck, quail, or turkey feet I know haretoday sells quail and mypetcarnivore sells turkey feet.. Beef gullet or trachea is a natural source too pretty anything with cartilage..

    I guess I'm lucky so far Saya has no reactions to chicken at all it's one of her edible bone sources along with lamb ribs, pork ribs, and chicken.

    I've read on some forums that some dogs that are allergic to chicken in kibble can be fine on raw chicken I think the cooking process changes it or something, but I'm not sure..

    Rabbit can be a source of edible bone too.

    Just be careful of any weight baring bone of mammals those can cause teeth breakage due to how hard they are.

    If you try to feed something like an egg, heart or gizzard do it really slowly those are very rich items and sometimes new people to raw feed too much of it and it can cause rocket butt very loose poop.

    Saya got slowly introduced to beef heart and other types of heart now she can handle 6 oz of it no problem.

    I mainly feed beef heart as a snack, but sometimes as a meal I get it for 99cents a lb which is pretty good..

    Of coarse Saya only likes beef heart and kidneys frozen, but liver she loves it..

    Since you'll be feeding prey modal I wouldn't worry about organs like liver, kidney or pancreas..

    Things like heart, gizzard, and lung is considered muscle meat not secreting organ. Tripe is good to feed, but it is rich so only in small amounts, but it does stink bad.. lol

    I fed the caned tripe and I was lucky the two times I bought it didn't stink too bad, but the fresh stuff does smell.

    Tripe is considered more of a supplament thing I think it has digestive enzymes in it.

    Tripe is not necessary luckily.

    Saya handles chicken bones just fine same with lamb ribs, but with pork she can handle it sometimes she spits out bones which I throw away.

    He should take to premade fine, but when giving a thigh or leg he might need some help like cut a little bit of meat off, but still attached to the leg or thigh to give him the idea what to do or take some pieces to feed to see how he likes it. Took Saya a week for her to get fully used to raw.
    Nicole, 5year old Bella(Boxer), and 4year old Saya(Shiba inu)
    Post edited by Saya at 2010-10-20 23:15:03
  • jujeejujee
    Posts: 882
    When I first started, I did kibble in the morning, premade in the evening, sometimes other way around, depending on if I was running late or not. Mika would usually only eat her kibble through the kong activity ball or the wobbler, sometimes hand fed. She did not like eating out of her bowl, she would refuse to eat unless she had to "work for it". Mika always had teary/watery eyes, and I thought changing to a No Grain diet as well as premade raw would improve it. However, at one point it got really bad, the vet kept telling me she was fine, but when her eyes started getting really goopy in the mornings it made me upset. So I talked with the owner of the holistic shop I go to. She told me it would probably be best if I did switch to 100% premade raw. So for Mika's health I did.

    Her eyes no longer get goopy, however, maybe once every few days her left eye gets watery. I talked to breeders about it before and they said she might have eye lashes under there and it just irritates her every so often. It's nothing to worry about since she shows no other signs of allergies or anything being wrong.

    Mika was on Bravo! for a bit. I loved Bravo! for the sheer fact that each patty was wrapped on its own. I switched to Primal for about a month, I used the patties. I tried the Chicken, and Turkey & Sardine. Chicken & Beef are the cheapest compared to the other formulas. I was given samples of Rabbit & Venison. Of course I can't say which formula is Mika's favorite cause I swear she goes bonkers for all types of raw.

    One day when I went to go pick up another bag of primal Carrie (owner of the holistic shop) gave me samples of OC Raw Dog. They are a local company & they are much cheaper than Primal and their food doesn't smell as much as primal. :) So I decided to switch Mika to OC Raw Dog because of the price & to support a local company that is just getting started. I save about $22 per month switching to OC Raw Dog instead of feeding Primal, the calculations are based off of the Chicken formula. The other OC Raw Dog formulas don't really have a big jump in price difference either.

    Look around at holistic shops, you might be able to find a place that makes premade raw locally and be able to save like I have. I think OC Raw Dog will expand in the future but for now they are only based in OC/southern california area.
    Post edited by jujee at 2010-10-27 00:07:43
  • SayaSaya
    Posts: 6678
    That's nice there's a locally premade raw in your area Julie. =)

    My pet store only has nature's variety raw and I'm not too keen on it since rabbits are from China and they've had some recalls on their chicken formula..

    I plan to get some type of premade raw probably from haretoday since I plan to make an order eventually..

    Luckily I haven't had to rely on anyone to feed Saya she eats once a day and gets a little snack, but sometimes she doesn't eat it because her main meal was pretty big and she is content.

    She does get fruits and veggies as snacks when I'm eating it and I've made her a fruit smoothie type thing that I froze in a ice tray she and Bella loved it.

    Her favorite fruits are blueberries, strawberries,banana, mango, peach, and pears. I got peach, apples, and pear trees in my yard so she gets to eat the fruit she doesn't like the apple trees they are for baking pies so they are not too sweet..

    Saya only veggie she likes are tiny bits of steamed green beans, cooked sweet potatoes, and steamed carrots anything else she refuses. She only gets these as treats.

    Only supplements I give are solid gold seameal and grizzly's salmon oil. I only give the seameal when I give her an egg which is usually once a week. I mix the seameal with a little bit of water then I mix the egg in with it and she loves it.

    I haven't given her any salmon oil I ran out both of the salmon oil and seameal, but since I've been feeding more grass fed, free ranged,and deer meat she also gets a frozen raw mackerel once a week too.

    I haven't been using the oil since from what I've read grass fed and free ranged animals have more omegas.

    I plan to buy some more seameal and salmon oil and just do salmon oil once a week.

    I just want to write this Saya used to reverse sneeze a lot when she was on kibble. Every night and every time she ate she reversed sneezed, but now on raw she hasn't reverse sneezed at all.

    While reverse sneezing isn't harmful, but I'm glad she doesn't do it anymore maybe it was set off by a allergic reaction to it or kibble was just not right for her I dunno..

    One thing I've noticed I don't clean Saya's ears as much as compared to Bella our boxer who eats wellness core ocean.

    Sorry if this is gross, but with raw diet the dog's poop actually degrades much faster then kibble poop. After a few days or a week it's almost gone. I don't even pick up her poop in my yard only when we are at dog parks or in the public..

    The poop can also be much more smaller too. Saya's poop varies sometimes it's the size of her kibble sized poop and sometimes it's really tiny. She also poops just once a day some times two it depends on what she has eaten and how much etc..

    Good luck on your research.
    Nicole, 5year old Bella(Boxer), and 4year old Saya(Shiba inu)
  • Great links, great info! When I was staring raw (I feed BARF) the only stuff out there was the Billinghurst book, which was rather vague and a bit simplistic. I WANTED stuff like the tables that tell how much to feed!

    I feed mostly chicken--backs and necks (the backs still have organ meat attached) and some thighs and wings for the AA puppy, who I feel needs more meat. I give them some leftovers too, and seameal, and salmon (or other fish) oil capsules. I sprinkle the seameal on their chicken and give them one fish oil capsule each (unless they are having fish with dinner). And some yogurt and/or probiotic powder. And an egg now and then.

    Anyway, it's been SUCH a long time that I read anything on feeding raw that I decided recently it might be useful to look stuff up and see what kind of new info. is out there and see if I want to tweak their diet a bit. They're healthy has can be, but Toby is FAT, even though he only gets a small portion of a chicken back a day (or sometimes just a neck, plus some training treats during the day), so I'm going to check into new possibilities.

    For the puppy, I'd continue on three meals a day, and for a Shiba pup, you could try chicken wings if he has a hard time eating the thigh (and with his puppy teeth, he may). I have to cut up the thigh in bits still for my AA puppy, and he is nearly 5 months old. I'd still cut up the wings. If he can't chew up the bone, he may vomit it back up if the pieces are too big.....I've noticed this in my AA. (interestingly, it rarely happened with my Shibas, who, though much smaller pups, seemed much more adept at eating raw).

    And Nicole, you are SO right about the poop....SO much better on the raw diet!

    eta: I forgot to say, I feed home made raw because it is WAY cheaper than premade, and for me, easier. I buy a supply of chicken backs at a butcher shop once a month, and I supplement with whatever is on sale (under a $1 a pound) if I want to give them more meat--or for the puppy. I've always spent less than $100 a month on feeding three dogs, and I've always had the two Shibas and one large dog (my GSD before he died, and now I have the AA puppy).
    Post edited by shibamistress at 2010-10-24 23:41:10
  • I know I am bringing back a very old thread but I was just curious, how much poop does one poop when newly on raw? I just started this past week and having been watching Bella like a hawk. She has only pooped once a day where as prior on the kibble she would do it three times a day. Also, her poop is super small now so I am just curious if all new raw fed puppies had the same issue?
  • TengaiTengai
    Posts: 275
    One of the benefits of raw they digest most of what they are eating! Less poop to clean
  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960
    For me my boys poo now only once to maybe twice a day and always fairly small quantity. We have been on raw for a little over a month now.

    With kibble, my boys often poo'd two-three times in the morning walk and again in the evening always seemed large quantities and often very soft. So I find the raw diet greatly changed their poo. They continue to look and seem healthy with no issues, but I do still worry sometimes when they don't poo for a day or so but each time I have worried they come up and give me a good quality poo as to say "Mom why you worried? Even you barely poo once a day"
  • DabishDabish
    Posts: 203
    Around when did you all start feeding raw?
    I asked my breeder about it, and she seemed concerned for me not to feed raw until at least 4 months old?
  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960
    @Dabish, you can start pups out on raw as soon as they are weened from what I have read. I know I have seen discussions involving breeders who start raw even before pups go to their new homes.

    In my case, I was worried about starting raw so took me awhile to take the leap. My Shiba was about 16 months old already (he was a very picky kibble eater and meal skipper) and my mix boy was about 6 months old (he has always ate anything you offer).
  • redcattoo said:

    They continue to look and seem healthy with no issues, but I do still worry sometimes when they don't poo for a day or so but each time I have worried they come up and give me a good quality poo as to say "Mom why you worried? Even you barely poo once a day"



    Lol I think that is why I am getting nervous. Only seeing 1 a day, if even, scares me a lot! But good to know that I am not alone in this boat

    Bella is almost 7 months now @dabish
    Post edited by bellatheshibainu at 2013-05-27 14:58:59
  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960

    Lol I think that is why I am getting nervous. Only seeing 1 a day, if even, scares me a lot! But good to know that I am not alone in this boat



    Nope you are not alone :) I try not worrying as long as when they poo it is a good poo and I know they are not vomiting or having uncontrolled diarrhea. Sometimes I wonder why I would expect a dog fed only twice a day to poo more than once or twice a day .... I eat 3-5 times a day and am lucky to poo once a day.
    Post edited by redcattoo at 2013-05-27 15:04:25
  • I love Bravo. It's the most economical and it's made right in CT where I live. It was truly one of the pioneers of the commercial raw movement and they retain a fantastic work ethic and commitment to making good food. The chubs are the most affordable ounce for ounce. I also met the owner after a seminar of hers I attended and she was the nicest person! She even gave me the two chubs she had on display for the lecture!

    The smaller and less frequent poops are great. Less poop bags!

    Welcome to the raw family!
  • SayaSaya
    Posts: 6678
    Saya started at 8months old.

    At 6 months she got raw egg once week along with caned fish then 7months she got a lamb rib, egg and caned fish as dinner instead of kibble once a week then 8months I had enough info to start with chicken and work up..

    I would have started her at 8weeks of age.. gotten small bag of breeder's kibble and once she was settled introduce her to raw.. I didn't research at the time.

    My next pup will be switched at 8weeks.

    I know people on other raw forum who does it and some come from breeder's who feed raw.

    They can't chew bigger bones I'm sure.

    I can source ground mixes for decent prices so I plan to do that with the pup and offer small bone in chicken like cornish hens or chicken necks coarse some boneless meat to even things out since it's boney item..

    Saya usually poops once a day, but if she had bone in meal she'll poo two times a day. She's gone three times a day once, but it was small poops easy to pick up.
    Photobucket
    Nicole, 5year old Bella(Boxer), and 4year old Saya(Shiba inu)
  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960
    I was doing a search for OC Raw feedback. I am still trying to determine if I want to supplement my dogs diet with pre-made raw for days I need the convenience of pre-made or occasions I may board them (as pre-made raw would probably be better for those times).

    I just found a local pet store that sells OC Raw and Vita Essentials.

    I haven't done the math on how much per meal each of these options would cost to compare to my current raw prey model average of about $6-$8/day for both dogs that I seem to be spending.

    I know the other option I have come across is Natural Instincts, but I calculated this to cost about $12/day for both dogs, so am still looking for maybe a better cost balance if I do add some pre-made raw into their diets.
  • I've been feeding bella premade raw only because we have an allergy issue and doing an elimination diet. The only thing she has not eaten prior was elk or venison (I tried too hard to spoil her with different goodies). Anyways, the premade elk patties we use is from Carnivora.ca. I'm not sure if the USA has Carnivora product but it is a wonderful product. You will not need to supplement with these patties as it is the full animal grinded up, less feathers, fur etc. it is $24 a package for the elk patties and come with 8, 1/2 patties. The turkey we just introduced is $15 a bag so it is so much cheaper. I give bella a mix of the Carnivora and some fresh venison so it is pretty expensive for me! The only thing I supplement with is fish oil capsules or salmon oil.
  • FoxyloverFoxylover
    Posts: 971
    @redcattoo Do you still feed OC Raw? I can't find anywhere in Orange County that sells this.
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  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 1106
    @Foxylover, lol. That's so funny since I'm pretty positive OC stands for Orange County! I can get it here in SD for sure. But their website locator isn't working for me... Maybe try facebook, their page says they recently did an event in Long Beach.
    https://www.facebook.com/ocrawdog
  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960
    @Foxylover, I never moved over to OC Raw as my backup pre-made raw, I am still using the Natural Instincts that is easy for me to get near me. OC Raw comes from where you are so I am very surprised you can't find it. Here is the search function of where to buy it from their website ... http://www.ocrawdog.com/purchase-locations.html ... good luck.
  • FoxyloverFoxylover
    Posts: 971
    @zandrame & @ redcattoo, thanks for the responses. I tried their retail locator and it wouldn't work for me either that's why I was wondering if they went out of business. I went to their Twitter and asked and no response and the last message was from 2011. I'll try the Facebook later if that's the way I decide to go.

    For now, I'm going to stick with her kibble but just cut it back and am adding more fiber to her diet to see if I can get some weight off her. It took me a long time to find something that agreed with her when she was younger and I don't want to mess with her digestive system while trying to get her to lose weight too.

    I did research a lot of the pre-made raw and will be going that route eventually but it's more important that I get the weight off her now for her knee.
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  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960
    @Foxylover the Where to Buy link works for me ... it helped when under Category I put in my state ... seemed to be thinking too long when I did just the zip code. It did list several locations that I know I have recently seen OC Raw at in regards to selling near me.

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