About Raw FeedingRaw feeding, or Biologically Appropriate Raw Feeding (BARF), is the practice of feeding raw meat, bones and offal to your dog. A raw diet is closer to what a dog would eat in the wild and therefore a more natural way of feeding your dog, as opposed to kibbles that are heavily processed with additives and preservatives to ensure it stays fresh.
Switching to a raw diet comes with an array of benefits, both for your dog and you! Stools will be come smaller and better formed; your dog's coat will become shinier and glossier; they will become less hyper without losing any of their sparkling personality; upset tummies will be less often and most importantly - they will be healthier and happier!
Making the move to Raw can be daunting for those who may not be familar with it, so we've put together a few tips for making the switch....
Raw Feeding Tips
- Generally speaking, you should aim to feed them 2-3% of their body weight for adult dogs. Puppies should be approximately 3% of their estimated adult weight. It's entirely up to you whether that is split over the multiple meals or all at once.
- When making the switch to raw, it's your choice whether you switch them straight away or phase it in with kibble. Be aware that kibble and raw meat digest at different rates and it can sometimes be more difficult to know whether their diet is balanced when they are served together.
- We recommend phasing in different meats week-by-week, in case your dog has any allergies or intolerances. Our usual advice is to start with chicken for a week and then introduce other sources such as lamb, beef, pork and oily fish weekly. Once you're sure of what they do and don't react to, feel free to mix it up!
- Advice on the internet says to aim to serve your dog 80% meat, 10% bone and 10% offal. Many of our complete meals adhere to this ratio, however it is okay to serve them different ratios on occasion - balance is key! Watch out for white and chalky stools - this means their is too much bone content in their diet. Switch to a boneless meal or one with a lower bone content if necessary.
Watch Out For...There are a few things to watch our for when switching to a raw diet, including:
- Immediately after starting a raw diet, your dog's stools may be more loose, or they may not go to the toilet at all. This is totally normal and within a few days they will become smaller, more solid and better formed.
- Dogs on a raw diet drink dramatically less water. This is also totally normal! Most of their needed water comes from their food when on a raw diet, as opposed to dry kibble. If your dog is otherwise in good health, this is nothing to worry about.
- Raw feeding offers your a dog a lot more choice and variety and just like us, they have their likes and dislikes! Don't be worried if there are certain meats and meals your dogs don't like - learning what they do and don't like is all part of the process!
- Weight fluctuations - while 2-3% of their adult body weight is a good estimate, if you notice your dog putting on or losing too much weight, you should adjust accordingly. Raw feeding is a lot of trial and error in the beginning, but after the first couple of months you will have a better idea of what your dog likes and dislikes, as well as the volume they should be eating.
Looking for more information? We recommend checking out Raw Feeding Rebels, a great resource for new and old raw feeders alike. They have plenty of articles and information on all aspects of the raw diet.
Ready to get started? Check out our raw food range. If you're not ready to take the leap - don't worry! We also sell dry food.