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Why Raw?

We don't claim to be experts but we are happy to share what we have learnt during the last thirty years through doing our own in-depth research and furthering our knowledge in dog nutrition and feeding a raw food diet.  We are happy to chat on the phone and also offer a free RAW consult where we meet you and your dog on-line and talk you through the initial stages of 'getting started', and we can even help you plan your dog's weekly natural diet menu.

The B.A.R.F. (Biologically Appropriate Raw Food or Bones And Raw Food) diet is a species appropriate diet. Based on fresh foods such as raw meats, raw bones, raw vegetables and minerals and designed to mimic what your dog would eat in the wild. 

There are now many easy raw-feeding choices, in stores and on the internet, you can purchase frozen complete diets, frozen ground meat with bone, offal mixes and pre-mixed supplements that you just add to raw meat. We have chosen suppliers' whose products we know and trust, they make it easy to feed raw and cater from absolute beginner to experienced RAW feeder. It's as simple as thawing and serving.

Dogs both domesticated and wild, are members of the carnivore family, and are anatomically built for eating meat. Their teeth are designed for tearing and chewing and their digestive system is designed to produce powerful juices which dissolve lumps of  bone and gristle and make it possible for them to eat virtually everything of any prey that they would catch or scavenge with no ill effects whatsoever.

Rossi our blue merle border collie. Photo by Greg Knight

What To Feed...

  • 80% Muscle meat

  • 10% Offal

  • 10% Edible Bone

  • Some people also add vegetables in fresh or dehydrated form.


Dogs are individuals and what works for one might not work for another, the above is a guideline only, variations to suit your dog are quite normal. Maintaining a balanced healthy natural diet will result in a balanced, healthy, satisfied pet.

Bones are important for two reasons. Firstly, they provide vital nutrients including calcium, complex fats and vitamins. Secondly, the actual chewing of the bones is what keeps a dog’s teeth and gums healthy and gnawing and chewing not only provide excellent exercise and mental stimulation, but the action gives your dog a whole-body workout, helping your dog to stay fit.
 

The Benefits

  • A glossy coat

  • Healthy appetite

  • Healthy skin

  • Healthy teeth and gums leading to sweeter smelling breath.

  • Better digestion ( so less passing of wind!)

  • Smaller poo! 

  • Strong heart with increased energy and vitality 

  • Lean muscle tone 

  • Robust immune system

  • Relaxed happy demeanour

  • Fewer visits to the vets

Please remember - never feed cooked bones! Cooking bone not only reduces the nutrients available but also makes the bone brittle and dangerous to ingest.

How Much To Feed?

One of our home bred pups in action. Photo by Greg Knight

Dogs

A full-grown adult dog should be fed between 2-3% of the dog's ideal body weight per day, ideally spread over two meals (a quick way to work out % is by adding a '0' to the weight e.g. 1% for a weight of 12kg would be 120gms so 2% is 240gms and so on) If your dog needs to lose some weight, try feeding slightly less than this quantity, say 1.5%, and/or switch to a meat with a lower fat content, until the ideal weight has been achieved.  Just like humans, dogs are all individuals and the working breeds in particular, those that are active and lead busy lives may require more food. Level of activity, age, health, metabolism and breed, are all factors to consider when working out your dog's daily feed quantities. 

Contrary to popular belief, dogs need diversity in their diets just like humans do - so don't be afraid to mix up your usual order a bit and give your dog some variety! You may be surprised to know that some dogs do have preferences too just like us, and it's quite good fun finding out what they are. 

The lovely Bria as a 7 week old pup. Photo by Greg Knight

Puppies

Puppies can be introduced to a raw diet from as early as 3/4 weeks of age. Puppies at around 7/8 weeks, if they have been weaned onto a raw puppy diet, should be eating anywhere between 6-8% (some more or less depending on the breed) of their ideal body weight, ideally spread over three or four meals a day.

There are no hard and fast rules and so much of the feeding regime when they are young is done by having good judgement when you look at them, being aware how they are digesting the food and weighing them regularly. 

Food Hygiene

Please remember whichever products you use to follow normal food hygiene guidelines:
 

  • Always use separate utensils for raw meat and cooked foods;

  • Keep raw meat covered and store it at the bottom of the fridge;

  • Open and dispose of packaging carefully;

  • Wash and dry your hands thoroughly after handling raw meat;

  • Always wash your pet's food bowl in hot soapy water after each meal;

  • Never leave raw meat where it can become warm - always defrost somewhere cool or in the fridge overnight.