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Thread: I'm back! And I got some more questions!

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    Bully Bootie Duty LiLlilly's Avatar
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    Default I'm back! And I got some more questions!

    Sorry for the huge gap from my last post. Got a new job, new apartment, new computer, and things have been busy for me which is good. But the last time I spoke to all of you Lilly was on raw. I eventually had to go back to high grade kibble when I lost my one job, but now that I can afford it again I want her back on the raw train!

    For the last month I've been buying her pre-made raw, and its great for the convenience factor. I usually go with Dr. B's, or Natures Variety (or something like that). Beef with green tripe, or rabbit are the usual's. But, it's insanely expensive...So I need to start doing this myself again, but I really need an easier way to do so. I found it kind of pain in the butt constantly chopping meat and making a mess of my kitchen all the time. I think what I would like to do is buy a grinder so I can do more at a time and not have to do it every week. I understand that the intact bones help with keeping the teeth clean, but it's too much of a hassle. Another thing I found annoying was calibrating the organ content. So I came up with a simple plan to fix both of these issues I have with making raw.

    I was planning on buying free range chickens and grinding them up, organs, bones and all; and feeding that as a main staple. I plan on buying the Dr. B's, and NV still to add some variety to her diet as well. But I basically want a go-to operation when it comes time to prepare meals and not have to worry about organ ratios and what not. Just buy chickens and grind em up!

    I want to know all your thoughts on this if possible, and if it's a good idea. My main concern is a whole chickens organ make up sufficient? Or should I maybe add a little something to this idea to make it better for her? I figure if she's eating a whole animal then she would be getting enough organ meat. But what do I know lol.

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    Doggie Boutique Owner christyjulene's Avatar
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    Default Re: I'm back! And I got some more questions!

    Congratulations on the new job, apartment and computer! It's good to have you back here. I am looking forward to getting to know you. @cowsmom is probably the place to start for the food questions.
    Abbey is looking for a forever home

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    @Sherry is grinding raw she can help

    Welcome back stranger!

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    The Ultimate Sourmug Sherry's Avatar
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    Default Re: I'm back! And I got some more questions!

    I'm at work this morning and will go into detail when i get home this evening . Welcome back
    Life is like a box of chocolate covered

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    Default Re: I'm back! And I got some more questions!

    oh well welcome back there glad to see you. i could give some input but raw is not really my specialty @savemejeebus @RiiSi can help more and sherry will give her input later as they are actually feeding raw right now. im sure you will get it down.

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    Default Re: I'm back! And I got some more questions!

    Welcomeback!

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    Default Re: I'm back! And I got some more questions!

    Welcome back and congrats on all the positive chances.
    Variety is the key in raw feeding on getting everything needed. In my opinion chicken is not enough even if you add some Dr. B's, and NV's. You need at least 3 differend sources of meats, organs and bones, in her diet in roughly equal quantities.

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    Bulldog Vet in Training anatess's Avatar
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    Default Re: I'm back! And I got some more questions!

    I involuntarily cringe when the word "grinding" appears on a raw feeding method. It is A LOT of work and can be a potential for negative feelings towards raw feeding. So, unless it is absolutely necessary for your dog, see if you can just bypass that whole thing and let the dog grind the stuff for you.

    Okay, I don't know if this is going to work for you, but this is my way of making things easier for me...
    1.) If at all possible, I use whole prey - the entire rabbit, the entire duck, the entire fish, the entire chicken etc., so that bone and organ ratios are already pre-set. Unfortunately, I don't have a good, reliable source of whole prey. I can get the whole rabbit and whole chicken and whole quail from the reptile shop my husband goes to for our pythons, but they are only in town for Reptile Shows. And with raw feeding, you need to vary the prey. At least 3 as @RiiSi mentioned.

    2.) I buy in bulk. I can stay at around 99cents a pound that way. So, I've gotten to the point that I buy enough for a month's worth of food (yesterday I actually bought enough for 2 months), I spend 2 hours chopping the stuff up so it fits in these nice little 4-cup rectangular plastic containers I got from Walmart for cheap. I put one meal's worth in each container and I stack it in this chest freezer that a friend of mine gave me for free when he moved to the other side of the country. So that all I have to do everyday is grab a container in the morning when I let the dog out to thaw out and then plop the contents in his bowl that afternoon. And because it's chopped up in chunks (e.g., I have to actually split a leg quarter into thigh and drumstick to fit in the container - my dogs are seasoned grinders now so I am confident they can handle a drumstick without choking on it), the dogs finish eating in under 5 minutes. Which is good for me too because then, I sit and monitor while they eat.

    3.) Because I prep in bulk, ratios are easy to guesstimate. Chicken leg quarters is about 30% bone. So, if I have 10lbs of leg quarters, I just add 20lbs of other kinds of boneless meat (beef, pork, fish, whatever is available at the store for cheap). I follow PMR - 10% bone. So 10lbs of leg quarters is about 3 lbs bone. So, to make 10%, I add boneless meat to make the total poundage 30lbs to the 3lbs of bone. Make sense? And I do 5% liver... so 5% of 30lbs of meat is 1.5lbs of liver added to that 30lbs of meat. And other secreting organs is also 5% - kidneys, spleen, etc. So I throw in 1.5lbs of kidneys and I'm good to go. It doesn't have to be really exact. So, that's 33lbs of dog food that I feed throughout the month... I chop it all up and put everything in the containers without caring about what the ratio is for each meal because I know that once the dog eats all the 33lbs of meat, they got it all evened out.

    Then I just vary this routine depending on what I find around town... turkey goes on sale - they will be eating a lot of turkey next month... I end up on a trip to Orlando, I grab a bunch of green tripe from the Central Florida Raw Feeding co-op... etc. etc.

    I have found this to be really easy for me. I actually even enjoy my once-a-month chopping up sessions now. I know, creepy huh? If you need the food ground - then, maybe you can use the same method I use and just extend the once-a-month session to include grinding. If you don't have a big enough freezer, craigslist might be a good source for used ones. And yes, it does involve an upfront investment to buy the food in bulk but it does get cheaper that way.

    Hope this helps some.
    Last edited by anatess; 04-10-2013 at 10:51 AM.

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    Default Re: I'm back! And I got some more questions!

    Hey stranger! I know what you mean about the mess. My guys actually got used to eating chicken and can finish their meals really quickly, without leaving anything on the floor. We tend to not separate the meats into individual baggies anymore and simply cut what we need and put everything back in the fridge for another day.

    With organs I planned it so they only need to be given at the beginning of the month, instead of all throughout the month. It' much simpler because organs tend to come in packages that requires them to be divided into a few feedings. So by giving them everyday for the first week, we avoid having to refreeze anything. Makes it much easier to remember too.
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    Bully Bootie Duty LiLlilly's Avatar
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    Default Re: I'm back! And I got some more questions!

    Sorry again for the delay lol

    After doing some more research I did decide to NOT grind the meat. I also had to finally rule chicken out of her diet. I came to the conclusion she has an intolerance for it. I wouldn't say allergic, but her body just doesn't do well with it. Runny stools being the major symptom as well as BAD gas. I had this problem a year ago when I first tried raw, but couldn't really conclude if it was in fact chicken being the issue. There was no organ meat or anything this time so I know it is just chicken in general. Beef also was giving me the same issue...So for Lilly chicken, and beef are a no no. At least on a consistent basis...

    So I decided to go to with pork as my next option. A year ago pork was the last thing she was eating and I do remember it doing well, so I figured that would be a good route. I found some nice pork spare ribs, pork chops, pork heart, pork liver, and pork kidneys. The butcher cut everything up in nice bite size chunks of meat and bone for me too!! I chopped up all the organs and kinda mixed em up, and weighed out about 1.40 oz portions for each day. I was able to to get 31 days of organ meat and all I spent was 6 bucks. 20 bucks for all of the meat. If I fed this every week it would cost me around 22 bucks a week...Not too shabby in my opinion. They also have whole "Chinese" rabbit there? Are there any differences with Chinese rabbits, and are they ok? I plan on buying 3 or 4 and using them to give her variety. She did good on natures logic rabbit raw formula so I know her body does good on it. I would like to add some other options but worry that they will give her an issue. I feel like any kind of poultry will result in bad stools. Duck is way more fatty then chicken, and I think her body can't tolerate high amounts of fat. I also remember turkey being problematic...So what would you guys recommend for a third protein source?
    Last edited by LiLlilly; 04-21-2013 at 09:10 PM.

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