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Discussion Starter #1
I am finally making headway with the hubby for us to switch to raw. I am totally using the whole "we can save a lot of money" route. It's working. I can see him starting to crack...LOL. Not too much longer, everyone. :biggrin:

However, I do have a few concerns:

In our house that we are in now there is really no place for an extra freezer. Our garage is too small and there is really no place in the house. Bummer. Do any of you feed raw just out of your freezer that you have in the kitchen? Do you find that you can get a little meat supply saved up? Do any of you just go shopping every week or every other week for meat? We have a side by side fridge/freezer so our freezer space isn't too big.

I would be feeding two dogs raw. A 50 lb. GSH Pointer and a BRT pup. Who is currently 4 months old and about 40 pounds. Adult weight of 140-150 pounds.

Another thing is that within a year we will hopefully be moving to the Portland area. Those of you that have a freezer full of meat what do you do? How do you move it all? Lots of coolers?

We travel some. Sometimes we stay in hotels for a week or more at a time. Would I just take a cooler full of meat? Is that what you guys do who go camping/traveling?
 

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We didn't have room for our second freezer in the house, and we had no power to the garage so we just stuck it out on the side of the house that gets the least amount of sun. We propped it up on bricks and it does just fine. I would suggest finding a place outside for a freezer. It'll be hard to do it efficiently and cost effective out of your personal freezer....you can usually find a good deal on one off of CL.

We are going to be moving in the not too distant future as well. I would just not unplug the freezer and load it up until you're about to leave. Make sure it stays well sealed for the trip. It should stay frozen or mostly frozen for a day or two if you don't open it. This is what we will do.

We just got back from a two week road trip. We packed a cooler full of frozen meat and then went shopping a week later for more along the way. Worked out just fine without a hitch :biggrin:
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Cool...thanks.

I was just now looking in our down stairs laundry room. I am thinking I could fit a small chest freezer in the back corner after moving some things around. Do you think this would work okay until we moved? Possibly enough freezer space to get by for a few months?

In our next house a place for a second freezer will be a must. So, once we moved we would still have the small chest freezer plus another.
 

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It will definitely be better than not at all. By the time you move and are situated in your new place I'll bet you have at least 3 freezers.:biggrin:
 
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Oh, I'm sure that will be fine. Since you will transition slowly starting with just two or three protein sources, you wont need as much space to store up to like 6-7 different protein sources. I think that would be a good place to start!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Awesome! Thanks you guys. :smile: I'm getting excited.

whiteleo-you'll need to show me the ropes with joining the co op. I don't know how they work....?

I know that I should start out with chicken backs, but I don't know how easily I can find them. Is there a place where I could order them? I will be traveling back and forth to Portland, so maybe I could find a place in Portland.

I can get bags of chicken quarters at Walmart for 23 cents a pound or less. So I know I can get a lot of those cuts of meat. Would it be okay to start with quarters?
 

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Holy cow! 23 cents a pound???? I'm jealous LOL

You're in luck...there is a brand of the meat distributor that we order from out in Portland. So I know that they should have chicken backs.

Harvest Meat Company - Sales Contacts

Call and ask if they have a raw feeding program or if they sell to the general public.

I'm sure that the PNW co op should offer chicken backs too.

It is find to start on quarters, but you may have to trim skin, fat and organs and some extra muscle meat off to increase the bone to meat ratio. Just depends on how your dogs make the switch. I have a feeling that Duncan will take right too it but Lucky may not know what to do with it at first. Only time will tell though!
 

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We had a giant big freezer that died a few years ago and decided to downsize. We got a real good deal on a little chest freezer at Best Buy. It holds a surprising amount of food and doesn't take up much room at all in the garage or use much energy. I've found meat in the bottom that I forgot I had stored in it. Now that we are going to start the dogs on 'real meat' I can dig all that frozen meat out of the bottom of it and use it up!

Check out their chest freezers......they have a better deal then Lowes or Home Depot, at least here they did. It was like $145 new and fit in our Tahoe.
 

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Also, check out the appliance repair shops that resell items that they get in on trade or pickup from people who buy new items. I just bought a 21 cubic foot upright for $120.00 and it has a 120 day warranty, works like a charm.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Awesome...thanks again guys. :smile:

It does look as if the Portland branch of the meat company does have chicken backs. I am going to email them and see if I can get some kind of reply. So I would basically be buying a box/bulk supply of chicken backs? Right? I am going to Portland sometime this week and could pick up a box....or two....

I checked craigslist and there is nothing really good near me right now freezer wise. I do have a Sears in town and can check there.

So if I start at the low end of things, 2% of Lucky's weight (~50lbs) is about 1 pound of meat a day.

I am still a bit confused about how to figure Duncan since he is a pup. He currently is 4 months old and weighs 40 pounds. His adult weight is probably 140-150. I know I need to do 10% of something until sometime and then do 2%-3% then after....help! LOL... I am thinking he will need about 3 pounds a day...maybe?
 

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Feed 10% until it reaches 2% - 3% of expected ideal adult weight. You have already reached that so feed your 3lbs for now. :smile:

ETA: Always adjust for body build ... up or down depending on whether he is fat or thin.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Okay...sounds good. :smile:

I still have a bag of LBP Orijen and a bag of Acana to feed, so I have some time to find a freezer and get a supply going. Once I get a freezer I'll start looking for the good deals. I have emailed the meat supply in Portland....I hope to hear back about their chicken backs.

I'm excited because I feel that we are several steps closer to finally feeding raw! :biggrin:
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks! I am really getting excited. :biggrin:

I think I have about 3 weeks to a months worth of kibble left, so that will give me time to get a meat stash going! I am going to go by Sears tomorrow to see about their small chest freezers and I will still keep an eye on craigslist.

I actually think that hubby might be a *little* interested and excited about this....LOL. :tongue:
 

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I actually think that hubby might be a *little* interested and excited about this....LOL. :tongue:
I think that guys like having raw fed dogs. They get to tell their friends, "My dog eats raw meat! Aaarrrrgghhh!!!" It's very manly! :biggrin:

Great to hear your working towards PMR!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Hahaha! Yeah, manly for the boys....:biggrin::biggrin: Love it.

So I re-joined the Or/Wa co op. I had actually joined several months back, but had forgotten exactly which co op it was that I joined. Turns out it was the "good" one! The meat supplier they use looks as if they have awesome prices and a nice variety! I will be able to get chicken backs (and lots of them) very easily for the transition.

Now do most of you do a chicken meal for one of your daily meals? I will start out feeding Duncan 3 times a day as he is a pup. When older I will feed 2 times a day, and will feed Lucky twice a day.

So, I feed chicken backs ONLY for about 2 weeks, see how they do, and if they do well start adding in another protein source at that time?

When you guys get a bulk order of a lot of meat do you let it all thaw out, divide it up into whatever portions you want and then re freeze it?

I'm going to go and read the page RFD has up about beginning raw. Natalie or Jon-could you post up the link to your page? I wanna read it too! :tongue:
 

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Now do most of you do a chicken meal for one of your daily meals? I will start out feeding Duncan 3 times a day as he is a pup. When older I will feed 2 times a day, and will feed Lucky twice a day.
Most people do chicken as one of the meals per day because its cheap. Since we feed only once a day, our dogs get chicken maybe once or twice a week. It really depends on how you do it and what you can afford.

So, I feed chicken backs ONLY for about 2 weeks, see how they do, and if they do well start adding in another protein source at that time?
You can start this way, but I would assume that your dogs will eventually get very dry, powdery stools if you feed nothing but chicken backs for two weeks. I would say that you feed chicken backs for at least a few days and keep an eye on stool bowel movements. You may need to start adding in chicken quarters alternating with chicken backs about a week into raw.

When you guys get a bulk order of a lot of meat do you let it all thaw out, divide it up into whatever portions you want and then re freeze it?
This is exactly what we do. We order 400 or so pounds at one time and thaw it out, portion it up and then re thaw it when the time comes to feed it.

I'm going to go and read the page RFD has up about beginning raw. Natalie or Jon-could you post up the link to your page? I wanna read it too! :tongue:
How to get started | Prey Model Raw

That is just the "getting started" page, but there is a lot more there to read on the main site :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Just bought my first two 10lb bags of chicken quarters from Walmart for when they get done with only backs.

Woot! Woot! :biggrin::biggrin:
 
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