Many people getting a puppy from us want to follow our holistic approach with the dogs they currently have in their home. Switching to RAW can be scary, but there are some great guidelines in the article link below. Don’t give up! You’ll see a big difference in your dogs overall health and wellness no matter the breed!
Knowing where to look for your RAW foods is probably the most difficult part of RAW feeding. Once you have that down, it becomes a simple part of your household chores.
Many families order their food by the case and pre-package meals one month or one week at a time.
· Here in North Idaho, I order many proteins through the butcher counter at my local grocery store (Super 1). These include:
Chicken: leg quarters, legs, breast, backs, necks, feet, hearts (I do not use chicken livers)
Beef: Kidney, liver, sweet breads (thymus gland)
Pork: tails, cushion meat, liver, kidney, sweet breads, feet, brains
Turkey: wings, necks, feet, gizzards
Fish: whole mackerel, smelt
· You may have access to Asian or Mexican Markets in your area where you can get organs, feet, heads, etc.
· Wild Game butcher or Small, local butcher shops.
Here we have a small butcher shop that caters to farmers and hunters. They do not sell meat to the public, but we can go into their scrap freezer and take anything we want for free. Some of the things I have been able to get are:
Lamb bones with scraps attached
Organs from various animals
Large beef bones that I use for making bone broth and recreational chewing.
· Ranchers. When we lived in Mariposa, we had rancher friends that would call us if they had cattle that they couldn’t take to auction. We gave them a small monetary amount and we would butcher it ourselves or send it to a butcher. We have raised our own hogs as well and love using that meat for ourselves and the dogs.
· Local ads and local social media groups
Put out an announcement about taking peoples freezer clean out, ranchers’ scraps, etc. You’ll be surprised at what you might get!
Think out of the box! Take a chance, ask where you might not otherwise. Feeding your BB is in art and can be tailored to whatever you can get your hands on.
The most common scare tactic vets will throw at new puppy owners regarding RAW feeding is that the puppy will not get the proper balance of calcium and phosphorus. The article link below will walk you through the ins and outs of how RAW provides a better balance than commercial foods. This article includes the break down of bone percentages and how to calculate if your dog is getting enough.
One of the best resources for RAW that you can find is 'small' butchers. These are butchers that process wild game and farmers livestock. They have many different animals that they process and therefore a variety of bones and scraps available. We visit our local small butcher weekly, going through their waste which is kept in a freezer room until taken to the landfill. Last week we scored on about 50 lbs of organs, meaty scraps and bones. I tend to look for the small animal bones for consumption....lamb, goat, hog, deer...….while using the larger animal bones for bone broth and recreational chewing. This is a huge boost to our RAW feeding budget!
We typically stick to the variety over time method and so my dogs don't get all these proteins at once on a regular basis, but my freezer is empty and so I gathered all the little bags of 'stuff' lying around in there. Hen turkey necks, venison, goat or lamb (free from butcher bin, so not sure which), beef, beef liver and a bit of chicken. Each bowl is weighed to the individual dogs need with the exception of the puppy's as she is fed 3x per day. Nzuri = 2.8 lbs. Johari = 2.4 lbs. Bu = 3 lbs. Ki = 2.5 lbs. Ama = 2.5 lbs. Tomi = 2.5 lbs. Puppy Viper - 16 oz.