Disclaimer – I am not a vet, just someone who is passionate about my dogs and giving them the heathiest life I can. Do your own research! I have nothing to gain from this discussion. No product or service to sell. I am not trying to persuade anyone, just sharing information.

-Talked about kibble in the last podcast and how it is not the ideal diet, please listen to that podcast before this one because it will be referenced and I do not want to be redundant

-A lot to cover – this is not all inclusive, do your own research

-Please do not listen to part of this podcast and not all of it and think you are set to feed raw

-I will discuss adding raw to kibble but am *Not discussing cooked diets*

Primary resource is Perfectly Rawsome

Isabela with Canine Karma Training is a fantastic resource.

How to Feed Raw

-Balance is key

National Research Council

-macronutrients (proteins, lipids, carbs) and micronutrients (amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins and minerals)

-More is not better

Prey Model Raw (PMR) and Biologically Appropriate Raw Foods (BARF)

PMR: 80% muscle meat, 10% bone, 5% liver, 5% secreting organ

BARF: 70% muscle meat, 10% bone, 7% vegetables, 5% liver, 5% secreting organ, 2% seeds or nuts, 1% fruit

Muscle meats:

-Provide protein, amino acids, and water-soluble vitamins

-Pork, beef, fat (for energy), tripe (manganese), heart (B vitamins and minerals), lung (selenium and iron), cartilage (like trachea), fish (omega 3s)


            -Provide calcium, phosphorus and other micronutrients

            -Wings, necks, feet, frames, ribs (pork, lamb and goat), tails, heads

            -NO machine cut bones (pork chops, pork necks), turkey legs or drumettes, beef bones, weight bearing bones, absolutely no cooked bones


– Compared to regular cuts of meat, organs are densely packed with just about every nutrient

-Fat soluble vitamins, high in vitamin A

-Nutrients are affected by heat, raw is ideal

Secreting Organ:

            -High in nutrients

            -Kidney: B vitamins and Vitamin D

            -Spleen: iron

            -Pancreas: digestive enzymes

            -Brain: DHA (fatty acid)

            -Testicles: B vitamins


            -Nutrients and fiber

-Kale, spinach, chard, asparagus, avocado (no seed), cucumber, zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower, mushrooms, beets, eggplant, bell peppers, radishes, tomatoes, carrots, sweet potatoes, squash, turnips

            -Low glycemic options (spinach, kale, sprouts)

            -Avoid legumes

            -Starchy vegetables: squash and beets

            -Preparing vegetables: Carnivores do not have the essential tools to properly breakdown and digest plant matter in comparison to omnivores. Dogs do not have salivary enzymes to start carbohydrate digestion in their mouth and their jaw structure does not allow grinding motions to pulverize plant ingredients through chewing.

However, dogs do produce pancreatic enzymes for carbohydrate and starch digestion. Since dogs are unable to grind plant ingredients in their mouth and do not produce salivary enzymes to begin starch digestion in their mouth, it is recommended to process vegetables to allow for optimal enzymatic digestion. Puree, ferment, steam, or boil vegetables for optimal digestion and nutrient absorption.

Raw vegetables that are not processed for optimal digestion resists enzymatic digestion and are passed in the stool as waste.

            -Save excess from cooking or going bad, freeze, thaw, mix with coconut water in blender

            -Buy frozen veggies, heat up and feed

            -Keep in mind, ~10% of diet

Fruit: ~1% of overall diet

            -Antioxidants, glucose (energy) and fiber

            -Strawberry, watermelon, papaya, kiwi, blueberries, blackberries, figs, apples

Whole foods vs supplementation:

            -Bioavailability; feed whole foods when you can!!!

-Raw ratio diets are often deficient in certain nutrients – this is where raw gets a bad reputation

            -Iodine is almost always deficient in raw diets without whole prey – seedweed and kelp are sources of iodine

            -Manganese deficiency can lead to soft tissue injury, comes from fur and feathers, supplement blue mussels and green tripe

            -Vitamin D commonly deficient in raw diets; salmon and egg are sources but often needs supplemented; same with Vitamin E

-Zinc super important for a variety of functions; supplement with oysters

            -Fish oils: omega-3s, EPA, DHA

-Most multi-vitamins do not fulfill the nutrients that many ratio raw diets are missing and are therefore unnecessary

            -More does not equal better!

Sourcing ingredients:

            -Grocery stores, ethnic markets, butchers, farmers, hunters, raw-co ops

Adding raw to a kibble diet:

            -Easy to improve the quality of kibble by adding some fresh ingredients

            -How much and of what is important, don’t just wing it

            -20% of daily intake – reduce kibble by 20%

-If feeding 5 cups of kibble each day, reduce kibble by 1 cup and add 2 cups fresh food

            -If feeding more than 20% fresh food long term needs balance

-Nutrient dense options are best, i.e. avoid too many vegetables, beans, plain chicken, and opt for organs and red meats

-Eggs, whole fish and raw milk are high biological availability

-Beef, pork, liver, hearts, venison, fat

-Salmon, mussels, oysters

-Bone broth, coconut water, raw milk, kefir, fermented veggies

-“Prep” and freeze variety

-Keep an eye on weight

Transitioning Adult dogs:

            -A little at a time, with less nutrient dense meats like chicken

            -Liver, organ and heart will lead to cannon butt

Puppies and raw:

            -No slow transition due to daily requirements needed for growth

            -SO important for a balanced diet

            -Commercial premade raw for puppies is a great option


How to handle veterinarians while feeding raw

-Never feed predators (bear, alligator, wild boar) or scavengers (racoon)

-Pork in the US and CAD is safe to feed, potentially not other countries because of trichinella

-Freeze any wild game (including fish) for 3 weeks before feeding

-Feeding whole prey

-Therapeutic diets (cancer, kidney disease, epilepsy, diabetes, etc)

-Dogs on raw will drink significantly less water and poop less

-The cost of feeding raw

 -Premade raw – look for meat and not just veggies. No Farmers Dog, etc.

Raw Feeding Myths

Grains are not the solution to DCM

-Dogs do not have a requirement for carbs. Glycogen is necessary for sprinting, so some carbs are good for dogs that are primarily sprinting. Carbs in general aren’t something to be feared and are a balanced part of a diet, but in an appropriate type and amount. I would definitely be aware of the glycemic index of the carbs used, the macronutrients available for the type of carb, and the overall amount. While the addition of some carbs can be beneficial to athletes, excessive carbs can be detrimental to health.