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The Basics of Feeding a Raw Diet

Introduction

I’m sure many, if not most of you would have heard about raw feeding and its benefits. Well, although it may not be the cheapest food option for your dog, it certainly is the healthiest! Commonly known as “BARF” or Biologically Appropriate Raw Feeding, the provision of raw dog food aims to provide our precious pet dogs with a diet similar to what they had before they were domesticated. Just like in the wild, raw food is not cooked and is the way that food is supposed to be fed to dogs.

Benefits

Many owners want only the best for their beloved dogs. As such, raw dog food has peaked the interest of many pet owners and, in recent years, the demand for raw dog food has risen sharply. But the question remains – what are the benefits of raw dog food?

Some of which include:

  • Shinier coats
  • Reduced odour
  • Healthier skin
  • Improved energy and vitality
  • Cleaner white teeth
  • Reduced visits to the vet

The transition to raw dog food diet

Many dogs who are used to being fed kibbles may be picky and pet parents may face difficulty when switching to raw dog food. There are many reasons as to why your pet may resist change to the new raw diet.

Sometimes, pets may just be too used to kibbles and don’t recognise new food as food. Pet parents could try moulding new food into balls or pellets so that it would look more like a kibble.

How much to feed?

It is also important to take note of the age of the dog. Younger dogs have healthier digestive systems and will be able to tolerate a more sudden switch (1 or 2 days) with little trouble. We recommend substituting ¼ of your dog’s current food for raw food first and then gradually increase the amount of raw dog food until the transition is complete.

Once the transition is complete, the general rule of thumb is to feed a healthy dog between 2-4% of its weight.

For example, the average toy poodle weighs about 3.4kg. Using this as an example, it would need about 68g-136g of food per serving.

Hygiene

One of the main concerns of raw dog food is contamination. As opposed to kibbles or canned food, raw dog food is vulnerable to bacteria contamination. If not handled properly, the dog food risks contamination and could have severe consequences – including the possibility of your dog getting salmonella poisoning.

Even though canine digestive systems have some natural immunity to bacteria, they are not completely immune to all bacteria in meat. To prevent contamination, proper hygiene is very important. When preparing the food, pet owners should ensure that all surfaces that come into contact with it are washed thoroughly.

Closing Thoughts

We all love our pet dogs very much and want only the best for them. Hence, when switching from kibbles to a raw diet, it is important to take note the basics of a raw diet so as to ensure a smooth transition.

 

Sources:

http://www.dogguide.net/raw-diet-basics.php

https://www.darwinspet.com/resources/transitioning/dog/

http://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/switching-dog-to-raw-food-diet/

 

Photos:

Woman with dog:

https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-girl-animal-dog-40064/

White dog:

https://static.pexels.com/photos/356378/pexels-photo-356378.jpeg

Dog looking up:

https://static.pexels.com/photos/551628/pexels-photo-551628.jpeg

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Moses Tang

Currently an intern at Nekojam, Moses is a pet-loving student from Ngee Ann Polytechnic. Corgis and German Shepherds are his kryptonite and until he becomes a father of one, he can always be seen making new friends with pet parents! He loves making new friends, so hit him up on Instagram and Snapchat.

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