Saturday, 23 June 2012

Is the Raw Food Diet Healthy For Your Dog?

Any time we try something new, there's a learning curve. Mistakes will be made. But what if those mistake can hurt your dog's health? Or even his life?!
That's the problem I faced when deciding to put my labs on a raw food diet. I knew this type of diet was popular, but I've had reservations about doing it. Especially when I consider how dangerous contamination can be. Since puppy systems are already fragile, I decided to wait till all 3 were at least a year old before I started making the switch. I didn't want to risk their health in any way, but I also didn't want to change their commercial dog food routine.
To get started, I downloaded Maggie Rhines' "Going Rawr! Dog Lover's Compendium." She really went into detail when it came to the issue of food safety. I'm learning how to buy fresh food and how to handle it. But she also explain a lot about preparation and serving sizes. The most helpful part I found, was how to make the transition from a commercial food diet, to a raw diet.
If you're planning to put your pup on a raw food diet, I recommend that you don't start without reading this book first. It will help you save money, save time and more importantly, it will give you the confidence to start your babies on this diet.
Another version is the BARF diet. BARF stands for "Bones And Raw Food." it's more or less just an easy way to remember what to give you lovable dog. It's important to remember that you should never, never, ever give your dog cooked bones! Cooked bones are softer and may splinter. The last thing you want is you dog choking to death on a bone fragment.
Also, unless you know exactly what the animal was consuming, it's best not to go out and get your own raw bones. While it may sound fun to go slaughter a cow and skin the bones (not really) most cows these days are pumped full of hormones from the time they're calves. These hormones get into the bones as much as the meat itself. Raw bones are easily found in any major pet food store and many of them even come from organically fed livestock.
Remember, the raw food diet may not be best for all pets. You should consult your vet and get his permission before putting your pup on this kind of diet. Especially if your dog is older, just mixing raw food in with his already commercial food diet may be the best option.
For more information about feeding your dog and his overall health and nutrition, please visit the web's #1 source for dog food at

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