Blood in a raw diet

On my last trip to pick up meat for my dogs, I was chatting with the lady at Big Dan’s Trucking and Dog Food.  She mentioned that she had recently gotten a complaint on, what that customer felt, was the excessive bloodiness of their beef.

It threw me for a bit of a loop as it never dawned on me someone would be unhappy about that.  Their beef is “excessively” bloody for a couple main reasons:

  • It is very fresh.  Often the beef I’m taking home on a Friday was a live cow that previous Monday.
  • Perspective.  The beef to which most of us are accustomed, typically has some sort of packaging to absorb blood.

As someone who has been feeding raw for many years, I admit, I am a bit desensitized to the blood.  But, I know that many who are first starting raw have to overcome a certain “ew” factor.

I like the bloodier meat as it makes it easier to mix in anything I want to add to the food.  In the case of the beef, I have to add bone meal powder, so I typically pour a little blood into each dog’s bowl.

The blood is also good for the dog to consume as blood itself is a quality source of animal protein.

The only time I discard the extra blood is if the meat is starting to get a little….well, ripe. 🙂  The blood is what gets the worst odor, so if you drain the blood off (and rinse the meat if you’re working with RBM’s), you get rid of most of the gross odor.

Ground beef

 

Raw Diet: Using Ground Bone

When feeding raw, bone is a critical component.  Finding the right balance of bone is easy – just watch the dog’s stool.  Too little bone, the stools will be loose.  Too much bone and the stools will become hard and dry.  Any raw feeder knows the importance of watching the dog’s stools!

Because I prefer to feed ground foods lately, I have started using ground bone.  I’ve tried various options, but have found simply buying bone meal powder online works well.  I add about a teaspoon full per pound of raw meat.  From there, again, just watch to see what the dog needs.  (Organ meat will also affect stools as it is richer than muscle meat.)

raw meal with ground bone

Raw Feeding

So excited and pleased with my first order from a new (to me) raw food supplier, Big Dan’s in MN!  I picked up 385 lbs of meat for the dogs, for just $220.  The supplier is a 4-hour drive from me, but completely worth the time and gas.  I split the gas cost with a friend, who also picked up food for her dogs.

raw diet for dogs

When feeding a raw diet, a balance of muscle meat, bone and organ meat is important.

I’m currently feeding two Danes and estimate that today’s haul will last me about two months, although I’ll supplement with a few other items, picked up from local grocery stores, too.  My 5 1/2 month old puppy will need about 4 lbs/day and her 6 1/2 year old mama will need about 3 lbs/day.  The pup will slow down on eating after about a year old and won’t require quite as much food after that.  But that first year, puppies eat a lot!

Skyy Needs a Tooth Pulled

As a raw feeder, I’ve always rested easy about my dogs’ teeth health.  The raw meaty bones clean their teeth naturally.  Unfortunately, Skyy only chews her bones with her back teeth (she refuses to use her feet or do any ripping of raw meaty bones), which has created some issue with the teeth in the front of her mouth.  Her canine teeth have some tartar build up, although they still look good for an almost seven year old dog.  However, she has one premolar that has become problematic.

dog teeth

She is going in tomorrow to have the problem tooth extracted.  The vet will also clean the canine teeth while she is under.

Going forward, I will be using more recreational (chew) bones, as well as brushing the teeth, in hopes of keeping those front teeth cleaner.

What we fed today

Haven’t had any diet posts lately, so figured I would do a “what we fed today” post.

Tonight’s meal:

Canned Jack Mackerel, Tripett, egg (shell included), ground beef, yogurt and Vitamin C.

raw diet for dogs
Mmmmmm

raw meal for dogs
Each dog got one can of fish, 1/2 can of tripe, couple of heaping tablespoons of yogurt, about 1/2 lb beef, 1 egg and 2000 mg Vit C.

The dogs approve of my stellar culinary skills….

dog eating raw meal

dog eating raw meal

Tomorrow morning’s meal:

raw meal for dogsd

Chicken leg quarters

I wait to pull out the next meal until I’m cleaning up the current meal, which doesn’t usually allow the meat enough thaw time.  I often end up letting the meat sit in some warm water to speed up the thawing process.

raw meal for dogs

Chicken leg quarters thawing in warm water

What we fed today

I got a great score of food yesterday.  A friend cleaned out their deepfreeze and passed along some old meat.  Freezer burned meat is fine to use.  I personally wouldn’t feed a diet of only that, but it’s not going to hurt the dogs and they don’t seem to mind.

The dogs enjoyed some of that for breakfast – pork patties and beef liver.  I also included 1/2 can of Tripett each and a few heaping spoonfuls of yogurt.  Supplements added.

Dinner tonight will be chicken RMB (Raw Meaty Bones).

What we fed today

This morning, the dogs ate a 5 lb roll of AFS meat.  Supplements added.  Skyy wasn’t as interested as normal and Kizzy managed to polish off the majority of the food.  They seem to take turns being pigs, so unless one dog is getting really short changed, I tend to let the hungrier one eat more.  Works well for the appetite for the less hungry dog for the following meal!

For dinner, they split 1 lb of beef organ mix (heart, liver, kidney), one can of Tripett each and some leftovers.

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