B.A.R.F. 101

Talk about diets, exercise, and disease.
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L Boogie
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Postby L Boogie » Wed Feb 21, 2007 5:38 am

Well I decided to jump on the bandwagon and give BARF a try. We're on our second day and Duke is happily munching on a turkey neck as we speak. Duke and our kitty Neko took to it, well, like carnivores to meat. :thumbsup: I've already noticed results with Neko...he has Autoimmune Skin Disease and scratches himself bloody when he's not wearing a cone...well the cone is off and I haven't seen him scratch once today! And watching him walk around with a big sardine in his mouth like some sort of jungle cat was priceless. lol
The only thing I've noticed with Duke is that he acts like he's starving...even though he's getting about 3% of his body weight...but I've read this is normal while they adjust to eating meat. The time preparing the food is definitely worth it since it keeps them entertained and out of trouble for at least a little while. :))

So far I'm convinced that I will never again buy commercial food.

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Rugersmama
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Postby Rugersmama » Sat Feb 24, 2007 2:14 am

L Boogie wrote:Well I decided to jump on the bandwagon and give BARF a try. We're on our second day and Duke is happily munching on a turkey neck as we speak. Duke and our kitty Neko took to it, well, like carnivores to meat. :thumbsup: I've already noticed results with Neko...he has Autoimmune Skin Disease and scratches himself bloody when he's not wearing a cone...well the cone is off and I haven't seen him scratch once today! And watching him walk around with a big sardine in his mouth like some sort of jungle cat was priceless. lol
The only thing I've noticed with Duke is that he acts like he's starving...even though he's getting about 3% of his body weight...but I've read this is normal while they adjust to eating meat. The time preparing the food is definitely worth it since it keeps them entertained and out of trouble for at least a little while. :))

So far I'm convinced that I will never again buy commercial food.


Yay! I just wanted to chime in and say I'm having a similar experience. I switched over (kind of - I'm using the last of the kibble - so we're going every other meal) about 2 weeks ago. I noticed a difference in Rugie within 3 days. His coat used to be flaky and dry. He's not scratching as much and his coat is now soft & lustrous. No flakes. Our bulldog Maggie, I haven't noticed much of a change. I need to get calcium for her because she can't handle bones well - she tends to swallow without chewing. So verdict is out on whether I'll keep her on this long term. But Rugie is definitely taking to it. I also noticed, and maybe this is just a coincidence, that he seems overall calmer and more content.

Has anyone else experienced that on raw food diet?

Also question to fellow BARF-ers: What kind of calcium powder do I put on the meat for my dog that can't handle bones? And is calcium the only thing I need to be concerned about if she doesn't get bones to digest? (I give her recreational beef bones for chewing...but she just can't be trusted with chicken/tky/rabbit bones.

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L Boogie
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Postby L Boogie » Sat Feb 24, 2007 12:29 pm

I've read that it's not a good idea to use supplements because it's hard to judge how much they really should get. It depends on the dog's weight, activity level, metabolic rate, age, etc. Duke likes to swallow the biggest chunks he possibly can, so I usually hold the turkey neck, chicken leg, whatever, so he can break of little chunks at a time. He also gets a whole egg, shell and all 2 times a week. The shell has a bit of calcium in it and he gobbles it right up. Whole fish is good too, the bones are really easy to digest, and it's full of good oils for their coats. Right now he gets a decent sized whole sardine about 2 times a week. Or you could always invest in a meat grinder. Just some ideas for you. Good luck! :thumbsup:

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Rugersmama
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Postby Rugersmama » Sun Feb 25, 2007 8:33 pm

I want to add calcium to make up for the bones I can't give her. I'm afraid she'll develop a calcium deficiency since she refuses to chew bones. She turns her nose up at eggshells too.
I've been dragging my feet on buying the meat grinder because Rugie doesn't need it and Maggie's been giving indications that she may not accept the raw diet after all. She has refused muscle meat a couple of times...

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Postby concreterose » Sun Feb 25, 2007 9:14 pm

Rugersmama wrote:I want to add calcium to make up for the bones I can't give her. I'm afraid she'll develop a calcium deficiency since she refuses to chew bones. She turns her nose up at eggshells too.
I've been dragging my feet on buying the meat grinder because Rugie doesn't need it and Maggie's been giving indications that she may not accept the raw diet after all. She has refused muscle meat a couple of times...


Try searing it a little bit to make it juicier and release more aroma. As she gets used to it, serve it raw.

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Postby FransterDoo » Sun Feb 25, 2007 10:11 pm

How does he :turn his nose up"? Like will he eat all the meat off a rib-in chicken breast and walk away from the ribs themselves?

Gulpping (or swallowing with out chewing) can be a problem. most people freak and go smaller but it much better long-term to go bigger or more complicated or partially frozen - it MAKES them think about it and not gulp. If I hand Hankey a bite-sized piece of meat - he'll just swallow it but he just had to work his butt off on a 1/2 a chcken. It's bigger, oddly-shapped and all the "good" bits have to be teased out.


My dogs never eat alone. Right now I'm sitting on the couch and Franny's behind me in the kitchen eating on a whole chicken. I can hear she and also turn around and see her. It's also a good reminder that dogs eating whole prey take longer so you (including me!) can't expect to have dog dinner time over in 5 minutes (I wish sometimes!)


I'd give Maggie a little more time (a week or 2) before trying to change things up. She may just be getting the idea about what you want her to do!

Good Luck.

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L Boogie
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Postby L Boogie » Tue Feb 27, 2007 4:25 pm

Ok, so they've been on raw for a little over a week now. I feed Duke a bit more than he should get...but Duke is still looking kinda skinny. Not unheathily skinny, but he could use a bit more meat on his bones. I decided to add a bit more to his meals, probably some ground beef. Are there any suggestions to what I could add to his meal to help him get a little bit of fat on him?

Cybele

Postby Cybele » Tue Feb 27, 2007 6:02 pm

Odie and are are trying this - he ate a raw chicken drumstick (thinking about avoiding legs in the future, he did chew it pretty well, but it took under 5 minutes to eat), two chicken gizzards and hearts, and then a shin bone cut with a little beef on it - he ate the beef and the marrow Maybe too much?

Anyway, he was fine last night, but 18 hours later he started with serious runs - _not_bloody just very liquid and he puked up some yellowish stuff at the 23 hour point. Haven't fed him anything since. No kibble either, since the day before yesterday.

Is it normal for them to have these symptoms at first? How long to clear up? I've switched kibble brands before without upset. This is making me nervous, you can tell he doesn't feel so hot.
HELP

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L Boogie
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Postby L Boogie » Tue Feb 27, 2007 6:23 pm

I've heard of some dogs getting an upset stomach when they don't eat frequently enough. Personally, if I don't eat for a while, my stomach starts to hurt and I start to feel sick. Maybe cut your pups meal in half, and feed twice a day? Hmm I don't know about the diarrhea though. Maybe since you're just starting out, try only feeding one type of meat at a time, to have them adjust slowly...and then you can also learn what they like. Good luck!

Cybele

Postby Cybele » Tue Feb 27, 2007 6:42 pm

He was fed Merrick kibble before, and he would never eat it more than 1x a day - he'd turn his nose up, I'd leave it down, he'd eat it 12 or more hours later.

Gave him a gizzard and a heart this am.

Too rich?

Am going to try some plain yogurt with some Metamucil to try to ease his stomach and give him some fiber and good bacteria... and will buy some canned pumpkin as well just in case to add to his food tomorrow.

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Postby FransterDoo » Wed Feb 28, 2007 1:35 pm

Try just plain old chicken no organs, no big wreck bones with a ton of marrow.

Either chicken quarters or if you can, get whole chickens that you just wack into quarters yourself.

Give him a couple of weeks of just chicken to settle in and then start with variety or protein and adding in organs.

soft poops are ok once in a while - it's when he has serious explosive butt that you may need to tweak the diet.


I also highly suggest folks starting out join the giant Yahoo Rawfeeding list even if it's just to lurk and read.

Cybele

Postby Cybele » Thu Mar 01, 2007 8:02 am

FransterDoo wrote:Try just plain old chicken no organs, no big wreck bones with a ton of marrow.

Either chicken quarters or if you can, get whole chickens that you just wack into quarters yourself.

Give him a couple of weeks of just chicken to settle in and then start with variety or protein and adding in organs.

soft poops are ok once in a while - it's when he has serious explosive butt that you may need to tweak the diet.


I also highly suggest folks starting out join the giant Yahoo Rawfeeding list even if it's just to lurk and read.


Will do. His stomach has settled down by adding a bit of canned pumpkin and plain yogurt to each meal. I ordered a 40 lb. box of chicken necks and will add Nature's Variety patties - he's done well on those in the past in combination with kibble. Now I just have to keep this all a big secret because I am getting the reaction of "OMIGOD you have a pit bull AND YOU FEED HIM RAW MEAT???? Are you trying to create a MONSTER???" Oh well...

Has anyone else thought about all the chemicals they use on chickens? Antibiotics and such? Is this really any better than dog food? Anyone gone organic? Why I am obsessed with this I do not know.

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L Boogie
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Postby L Boogie » Thu Mar 01, 2007 8:46 am

Well I'm thinking Duke might have allergies. He did fine on IAMS, and was doing ok on RAW until today he's been scratching non-stop, and his skin looks irritated...just like allergies...I'm hoping he's just allergic to some additive of his food...he got a little bit of potato in his meal today. I feel so bad for him scratching away...we have some children's benadryl that our vet recommended for the kitty...could I give some to Duke to relieve the itching? Or should I just wait it out and see if he was allergic to something in his food?

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L Boogie
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Postby L Boogie » Thu Mar 01, 2007 8:25 pm

I called the vet to get the dosage of Children's benadryl for Duke to relieve his itchies. For everyone's reference...the dosage is 1 mg per pound. I'm not going to give him any veggies for a while to see if that's the problem.

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Postby pblove » Thu Mar 01, 2007 8:31 pm

Has anyone else thought about all the chemicals they use on chickens? Antibiotics and such? Is this really any better than dog food? Anyone gone organic? Why I am obsessed with this I do not know.

your not the only one worried about the chickens/steroids/antibiotics.
I now only feed organic meats/chicken. organic eggs, organic yogurt to my dogs (myself too)


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