Natures Variety Instinct Raw Boost Kibble And Freeze
If you want to dip a toe into raw food for your dog, nothing beats the convenience this 2-in-1 option from Natures Valley. With the nutritional benefits of raw food and the ease of dry food together in one bag, the food offers a nutrient-rich blend of high-protein kibble and freeze-dried raw bites.
Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost Kibble and Freeze-Dried Food
Cage-free chicken is the number one ingredient in this protein-rich dog food contains both high-quality kibble and bite-sized nuggets of raw, freeze-dried food. You wont find grains in either formula, but you will find a long list of vitamins, minerals, fruits, and veggies for a balanced meal. Find it in 4-lb, 10-lb, and 21-lb bags.
Dog Raw Food Diet For Beginners
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Is raw food good for dogs? How much raw dog food do I feed my dog? If your dog struggles with allergies, weight issues, digestive problems, or any other common conditions that affect dogs, feeding raw dog food might be just the answer you are looking for.
For years, many dog owners have turned to raw dog food diets as a solution pet food, and the results have been amazing. Feeding your dog as nature intended means that they will get nutrients from sources that their bodies are designed to digest, leading to improved overall health for dogs.
If you are looking for honest answers to your burning #rawdogfood questions, then this guide is for you. You will be able to understand why everyone is so obsessed with raw feeding and be able to confidently decide if feeding the best raw dog food is right for your pet.
Why Raw Dog Food
The idea of a raw diet for dogs took off after Australian veterinarian Dr. Ian Billinghurst published a book about how dogs would thrive on an evolutionary diet that sustained them before they were domesticated, consisting primarily of raw meat, organs, bones and vegetables.
Torres is empathetic toward pet owners who are considering the raw food diet, because she sees their perspective as a want to do the best for their pet.
“It’s somewhat of a sensitive topic, because I think there’s a lot of passion around nutrition in general from a pet owner’s perspective, and really a strong desire to want to feed the best,” Torres says.
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Are Commercial Raw Meat
Should you worry about commercial raw meat-based diets for dogs or raw dog food companies selling raw dog food?
No, raw dog food companies address all the risks and concerns about raw dog feeding with vet-formulated raw dog food formulas.
Commercially available raw dog food is formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by the Association of American Feed Control Officials . They use high-quality ingredients, including USDA-certified meats and fresh vegetables, to avoid contamination. Furthermore, they finely ground the bones to reduce any risk of chowing.
The FDA regulates and has guidance documents for all pet food products, including commercially available raw food for pets. Even the American Kennel Club has recommended a commercial raw dog food formula on their website.
Raw food for dogs is a great option as long as it is made from wholesome, natural ingredients and prepared in safe manufacturing facilities. Always speak with a veterinarian nutritionist first.
How Do Supplements Benefit Working Or Sporting Dogs
Supplements can benefit working or sporting dogs as some supplements help with training, focus, and recovery. If you have a dog that enjoys the outdoors, you should consider adding supplements to their diet. Sporting dogs are the same. Supplements are often considered for older dogs, but younger working or sporting dogs can also benefit from supplements.
Consider this if you are thinking of adding supplements to your dogs diet:
- What do you need the supplement for? Then compare the options available to find the best one for your needs.
- Would your dog benefit from a supplement designed for dogs with a specific condition or problem? For example, would your dog benefit from an antioxidant supplement if they have cancer? Or would they benefit more from a joint supplement for a dog with arthritis?
- What size is your dog? Small, medium, or large. Supplements are designed for all dog breeds, and dosage is based on the weight of the dog.
- How much or how little does your dog eat? This will affect the size of the chew you choose.
Just remember, supplements wont provide all the nutrients your pet needs, so they should be used in addition to a healthy diet.
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Excessive Carbohydrate Consumption Poses A Threat To A Dog’s Health
As with humans, excessive calorie consumption can lead to becoming overweight and obese, as well as a multitude of further associated health problems. And, again, as with humans, highly processed, high carbohydrate foods are often easy to eat and rarely satisfying making it easier to consume too many calories without even realising.
Obesity can lead to cardiovascular complaints, diabetes, and significant joint strain. In breeds prone to conditions such as hip dysplasia, this poses a particularly high risk. In fact, scientific studies have suggested that carbohydrates are essentially toxic to dogs’ digestive systems, often causing gut issues, as well as increasing blood sugar, stimulating pre-inflammatory hormone production, and pressuring dogs’ immune systems. High fibrous carbs, like brown rice for example, may sound more appealing to dog owners, yet even these cant be digested due to their cellulose levels, and so basically go in one end and out the other. These starchy carbs also effect a dogs ability to absorb essential vitamins and minerals from their food, which can result in greater susceptibility to illness.
Store It Properly For Risk Prevention
The fact that dogs can handle bacteria that we can’t doesnt mean that they are invincible. Improperly stored or prepared raw diets can still pose a risk to our pets.
How long can freeze dried raw dog food sit out? Like the raw meat you prepare for your own meals, it shouldnt be left out for long periods. Exposure to room temperature will allow the bacteria to multiply quickly.
Even though they can kill and pass these pathogens under normal conditions, if they are present in abundant enough amounts, they can still cause digestive issues.
Uneaten or future portions of raw dog food diets can be stored in the fridge for three days. If you are defrosting multiple meals at once, make sure you only take out what can be consumed within three days.
The materials that you use to store and raw feed should also be considered. Plastic cracks and scratches easily. Sometimes, these tiny, invisible marks on a bowl or container can host harmful bacteria transferred from the raw meat. Opt for glass, ceramic, or metal dishes and containers for feeding and storing.
One of our top picks is the Messy Mutts Raw Bowls. These stainless steel bowls are stackable and have silicone lids for safer food storage. They are great for prepping raw or dehydrated meals in advance.
Raw dog food should be kept freeze dried until you are ready to use it. Only defrost what you will be able to store in the fridge and feed in the next two days.
How to Defrost Raw Dog Food?
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Bring Back Your Dog’s Natural Luster
Everything in your dog’s body is connected in some way or another. Your dog’s skin and coat are affected by how all the rest of its systems function. Poor digestion or absorption of nutrients can affect cell cycles, how the body uses nutrients, and, eventually, their skin and coat health.
Dry skin, excessive shedding, itchiness, and inflammation can all be caused by a lack of or improper balance of nutrients in your dog’s diet. A raw diet provides the most natural sources of these essential nutrients in a form that is easy for your dog’s body to recognize and use.
Another important factor in skin and coat health is hydration. Dogs that do not eat a moisture-rich diet will end up losing that moisture through bowel movements. Dehydration negatively affects your dog’s skin by limiting natural oil production that supports the life cycle and quality of your dog’s skin cells and fur.
Feeding a high moisture diet will not deter your raw dog from its natural drinking habits. However, it will help improve digestion, keep them better hydrated, and flush toxins and bacteria out of their system.
For many pet owners, shedding is a constant issue. A reduction in shedding is one of the first benefits you will see when switching to raw feeding. In combination with a regular brushing routine, you can significantly cut down on shedding and dander in your home.
Is It Ok To Mix Raw And Dry Dog Food
Before, it was not advisable for dog owners to mix raw and dry food because dry food doesn’t easily digest compared to raw food.
But now, it is perfectly okay and safe to feed your dog with mixed raw and dry food unless they are suffering from indigestions.
If you feed both kibble and the raw, its combination will work quite well. Their digestive system will be strengthened and more capable of gaining the complete nutrients for dry and raw food diets.
But for those beginners, owners should gradually and slowly feed them to acclimate the new lower acidity levels.
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Which Is Better: Commercial Raw Dog Food Or Homemade Raw Dog Food
The key to deciding which raw dog food commercial or homemade is better, hinges on three main considerations, namely: convenience, availability, and affordability. Ideally, raw food should be homemade. This way, you are the only one who determines the exact ratio and quantity of food per packed meal portion that is customized for your pet.
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A pack, for instance will have what your dog needs the correct amount of meaty parts, bones, offal and organs, and preferred fruits and vegetables. This is quite difficult to determine in commercially packed frozen food, unless you are able to get the whole carcass in a pack.
With homemade raw feeding, you also have the option to feed whole, especially the smaller fowls and game. If you have a source that can regularly supply you with raw meat, and if you have the time to prepare homemade feeds, then by all means choose this option. The closer the raw food is to its natural form, the better it will be for your dog.
However, this form of raw food is not always available to all who choose raw diet for dogs. This is where commercially prepared raw food comes in. Commercial raw dog foods are more accessible and available to pet owners. These are packaged as freeze-dried meat nuggets and meat portions, and sold in supermarkets and pet supplies.
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Raw Dog Food Foundation: Minerals
To keep your dogs bone content in the 12% to 15% range, you need some of his meats to have the bone in them. Start with the meaty bones you can find at your butcher or local pet store.
Its important to make sure the bone matches the size of your dog. A 10 pound Chihuahua wont be able to chew through a beef rib bone, but a 100 pound Rottweiler certainly can.
If your dog cant eat all of the bone, then its not a good source of minerals. Make sure your dog can completely eat the bone.
Youll also want to stay away from pieces your dog can swallow whole. If your butcher cuts up his ox tails into 2 inch pieces, your dog will swallow them whole and might not be able to digest them. And they might cause an intestinal blockage.
Try to choose bones that have a lot of joints, like necks, tails and feet and bones that arent weight bearing. Weight bearing bones can break teeth or get stuck in the digestive tract. Meaty bones with a lot of small bones and joints are the safest choice for your dog.
Dogs have a built-in mechanism for bone safety. If your dog swallows a piece of bone thats too large to digest, hell often just throw it up for a second pass!
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How To Choose The Best Raw Diet For Your Dog
Many pet owners ask the question, Is feeding your dog raw food good? For many dogs, the answer is yes, especially when you pick a affordable raw dog food choice.
With an almost overwhelming number of feeding choices, it can seem daunting to find the diet that is right for your dog. There are many styles, formats, and flavours of raw dog food, each with its own pros and cons.
To find the best raw diet for dogs, start by narrowing down your options. What are your pet’s specific needs? What are you looking for in dog food? If you are wondering what is the best raw food diets for dogs, you’ll need to take a look at the make-up of the dog food to ensure that the diet meets your unique dog’s needs.
After you determine how to support your dog’s health, consider things like price, quantity, and ease of preparation.
What Are The Benefits Of Raw Food For Dogs
There are several benefits of giving your dog raw food:
- Shinier Coats. By giving your dog a raw food diet, you can expect them to have a shinier coat. This is because raw foods can improve your dogs skin health overall.
- Healthier Skin. Raw dog foods give your dog more healthy skin, especially if they contain beneficial fatty acids that reduce inflammation.
- Cleaner Teeth. It is a well-known fact that processed foods lead to a build-up of tartar and plaque in your dogs teeth. Raw foods are much cleaner in comparison.
- Higher Energy Levels. Without any additional processing, raw foods can offer higher energy levels in comparison to other dry kibbles.
- Manageable Stool. Since your dog will be on a clean diet, their poop will be more consistent and smaller in quantity, or simply easier to manage.
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Including Bones Or Not
Including bones in a raw diet for dogs can provide the nutritional benefit of added calcium and phosphorous, if the bones can be chewed and ingested. They also help maintain dental health by preventing tartar buildup.
However, bones in the diet can also pose health risks, including obstruction of the esophagus and constipation from having too many bone fragments in the colon.2
What Nutritional Requirements Does A Dog Have
Dogs can have different nutritional requirements if they have a specific disease but healthy puppies, adults, and pregnant or nursing dogs all require different things from their food, too. This is why different commercial diets exist for dogs in different life stages and also with different health problems. A six-month-old puppy does not have the same nutritional needs as a dog with kidney disease.
Nutrition affects internal organs, skin and coat, bones, muscles, and other parts of your dog, so it is more complicated than some pet owners may realize. Dogs need various vitamins, minerals, proteins, carbohydrates, fibers, and other ingredients to function normally and be healthy. If an improper diet is fed, dogs can develop serious, life-threatening issues, break bones, and not grow properly.
Dogs are omnivores so their nutritional needs reflect that. The Association of American Feed Control Officials helps define and regulate what pets need and pet food manufacturers use these guidelines to make their foods. Domestic dogs are genetically different than their wolf ancestors so even though they are both canines, domestic dogs evolved to be able to digest starches.
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How To Start Feeding A Raw Food Diet To Your Dog:
The process of transitioning a dog from a diet that is over-processed to one that is rich in nutrition and full of raw or fresh food can be daunting. After all, figuring out calorie counts and nutritional needs can be overwhelming. Carrie and her staff have found a way to make this process easier as well:
“When starting on a raw food diet, we recommend the following:
- First three days: 95% old food, 5% new diet
- if all is good, then for the next 3 days try 90% old food and 10% new food
- if all is good, then for the next 3 days try 85% old food and 15% new food
Every three days, change the percentage by 5%. If you get loose stool, return to the previous percentage that worked and stay there until your dogs stool is normal again. Once your dogs stool is normal, try advancing the percentage again. Using a probiotic/enzyme or using pure pumpkin can help during this time.”
If feeding a raw diet is simply not feasible right now, Carrie advises adding water to the current kibble you are feeding. “Your pets body is looking for 80% moisture in its food. Dry food is 10% moisture. You can also add water and let it break down the food overnight to almost a canned consistency that is much easier for your pets body to assimilate.”
Preparing Raw Food For Dogs
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Preparing raw food for dogs is a fairly straightforward, but there are a some questions you probably have such as:
- What type of raw food should I feed my dog?
- How much food should I feed at one time?
- Where do I buy raw food for my dog?
- How much is this going to cost me?
- How is the food prepared?
- What eating space is required?
- How do I switch my dog from kibble to a raw food diet?
Not to worry. Ill answer all of those questions for you on this page. By the way, if you havent already, I recommend you go back and read Page 1: Raw Food Diet For Dogs before you continue. Another thing to keep in mind is that most dog food review sites will not recommend raw food for dogs. This is because they make money through affiliate marketing and get paid to promote commercial dog food companies.
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