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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have been trying to get into RAW, and read this...
Getting Started (quick start) | Prey Model Raw

I have also read many other posts and still have a couple of questions.

1.) In all of the guides all I see is meat products. Don't you have to throw in some veggies/fruits/etc? If so how much?

2.) I have a 70 lb GSD. going by the 2-3% meat per day, thats right around 1.75 lbs/day. For measurement, do you simply take (say a leg quarter) and throw it on a scale until it hits 1.75 lbs? Or does the 2-3% meat requirement mean MEAT only and not including bone/skin/etc?


3.) What stores has everyone typically found to be the cheapest for buying food?

Thanks in Advance
 

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1.) In all of the guides all I see is meat products. Don't you have to throw in some veggies/fruits/etc? If so how much?
Nope! No veg. Dogs can get everything they need from meat, bones, and organs.

2.) I have a 70 lb GSD. going by the 2-3% meat per day, thats right around 1.75 lbs/day. For measurement, do you simply take (say a leg quarter) and throw it on a scale until it hits 1.75 lbs? Or does the 2-3% meat requirement mean MEAT only and not including bone/skin/etc?
The weight you would feed would include the bones/skin/etc. It is not necessary to be exact with what you feed. A good guesstimate will work. I did buy a scale when I first started feeding raw beacuse I had no idea how a pound of meat looked. I have gotten better at figuring it out and rarely use the scale any more.

3.) What stores has everyone typically found to be the cheapest for buying food?
If there is one in your area, a co-op is usually the cheapest place to buy stuff. Another great place is ethnic markets. They tend to have a lot of exotic stuff for reasonably prices. Also, Walmart is good. I get 10lb bags of chicken leg quarters there for $3-$5.

Good luck!
Richelle
 

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1.) In all of the guides all I see is meat products. Don't you have to throw in some veggies/fruits/etc? If so how much?
Nope. Surely you could if you really wanted to, but they hold no nutritional value for dogs. Dogs are carnivores, and therefore only require meat, bones, and organs from a variety of animals. Commercial pet food companies will try to convince you that they're omnivores- don't be fooled.

2.) I have a 70 lb GSD. going by the 2-3% meat per day, thats right around 1.75 lbs/day. For measurement, do you simply take (say a leg quarter) and throw it on a scale until it hits 1.75 lbs? Or does the 2-3% meat requirement mean MEAT only and not including bone/skin/etc?
You can do it that way.
I used to weight all my dog's meals, but then I decided it took too much time, and now I eyeball it. Don't get too hung up on the 2-3% though, just use it as a starting point and go off of body condition from there.
The measurements include bone and skin. Though you may want to take the skin off if you see runny stools at first. My dogs did fine with skin.


3.) What stores has everyone typically found to be the cheapest for buying food?

Thanks in Advance
I think this varies greatly by location. Definately look for a co-op or wholesaler in your area. I don't have access to any of those, but I've had really good luck with Wal Mart and ethnic markets. I've heard WinCO is supposed to be really good if you have one, but our wal mart here is still cheaper. Also, Food4Less had been a goldmine for me.
 

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I have been trying to get into RAW, and read this...
Getting Started (quick start) | Prey Model Raw
I hope you found my page helpful! A lot of the other members here helped contribute to it. Let me know if you think anything is missing or you have any other questions as well.


1.) In all of the guides all I see is meat products. Don't you have to throw in some veggies/fruits/etc? If so how much?
Most of the raw feeders here don't feed fruits and veggies on a regular basis. If we do feed them its because our dogs like them or its a "treat" because they hold no nutritional value to a dog. Just to make them digestible to a dog you have to puree or cook most of the nutrients out of them. Most of the time fruits and veggies are pretty harmless to a dog, but in large enough quantities they can become irritants to the bowels and cause diarrhea and gas.

If you were to add in fruits and veggies I would say either just a very small amount of the diet, approximately 5% or less of their overall diet. They must be cooked or pureed to make them digestible to the dog. Why such a small number? Well, with "prey model raw" you are modeling what would be found in a prey animal. So we assume that the average prey item is composed of 80% muscle meats, 10% bone, and 10% organs meats by weight. It is possible that there is still plant material left in the digestive system of a prey animal (which would be 5% or less by weight) that would be consumed by the dog, if in a wild/natural state. Since we have to model this we have to estimate how much would be good to give.

2.) I have a 70 lb GSD. going by the 2-3% meat per day, thats right around 1.75 lbs/day. For measurement, do you simply take (say a leg quarter) and throw it on a scale until it hits 1.75 lbs? Or does the 2-3% meat requirement mean MEAT only and not including bone/skin/etc?
The 2-3% meat per day includes everything that goes into the diet. This is meat, bone and organ and anything else you want to include like fruits and veggies. Remember that this is just a starting guideline that you may have to tweak a bit for your dog's individual needs. Some dogs need more or less depending on energy expenditure, age, breed and metabolism. But definitely start out the first few days on the smaller end of your daily ration range because it takes a while for dogs to be able to handle raw foods rather than highly processed starchy foods.


3.) What stores has everyone typically found to be the cheapest for buying food?
We get most of our meat from a wholesale meat distributor called Harvest Meats. We order in bulk cases from them maybe 3-4 times per year while getting 400+ pound of meat at a time. We order chicken, turkey, pork, beef, fish, lamb, organ meats, etc from them all being under $1 per pound. We have 4 large breed dogs to feed and this is the only way that we can do this so cheaply.

We also shop the meat sales at grocery stores, always keeping what we buy to under $1 per pound (ie during Thanksgiving turkeys are ~25 cents per pound...can't beat that price so you'd better stock up!!!).

We also shop the ethnic markets locally for rare types of meats that we can't find anywhere else.

We also are members of a raw feeding co op group and get all kinds of stuff from them. Our latest hook up through them is buying a whole llama butchered for less than $1.25 per pound for the whole animal (meat, bones and organs). We never know what we will get offered through that group!

We also post ads up on craigslist for buying people's freezer burned meat off their hands. We have gotten awesome response with these ads because there are a lot of people out there with freezers packed with meats they wont eat. Freezer burned meats are just fine/safe to feed a dog. All it freezer burn is dried out and loses some of the flavor which dogs don't mind at all. I would say that we get close to 2 thousand pounds of meat from these ads annually if not more than that!

Keep the questions coming if it will help you make the switch. We are all here at your disposal!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
thanks for all the answers i have received. I plan on going out this weekend to a couple of markets to see what type of prices I can expect.

While reading through the guide again, I came up with another question.

The first thing to give is chicken back. I have personally never even looked for this in the markets but was told that chicken backs do not have hardly any meat and mostly bone. Is this true? And if so, if I start my dogs on this, will there be enough nutrients in it?

thanks again for all the help!
 

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We couldn't find chicken backs here where we live. We opted for chicken hindquarters instead and removed all fat and skin at first. The hindquarters we get frequently have half a back included. Both our puppies were transitioned from grain-free kibble with additions of homemade meat treats.


I think the reasoning behind the chicken backs is 50/50 meat/bone so that the transitioning dog doesn't get diarrhea or vomiting from the change. In the beginning too much meat can cause problems. At least that's what I've read through many different sites on the web. Too much bone constipates.
 

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I think the reasoning behind the chicken backs is 50/50 meat/bone so that the transitioning dog doesn't get diarrhea or vomiting from the change. In the beginning too much meat can cause problems. At least that's what I've read through many different sites on the web. Too much bone constipates.
Thats exactly the reason.
 

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We couldn't find chicken backs here where we live. We opted for chicken hindquarters instead and removed all fat and skin at first. The hindquarters we get frequently have half a back included. Both our puppies were transitioned from grain-free kibble with additions of homemade meat treats.


I think the reasoning behind the chicken backs is 50/50 meat/bone so that the transitioning dog doesn't get diarrhea or vomiting from the change. In the beginning too much meat can cause problems. At least that's what I've read through many different sites on the web. Too much bone constipates.
we had the two dogs who didn't react so well to the transition...largely because we were doing it wrong....hard to believe two dogs would react the same way and they are different breeds.

at any rate, since, at the time we did NOT know that i was the cause...we did feed stripped down chicken backs....the second time we started raw and thus avoided the vomits, the runs, and any other transition problem dogs can have....

they are now into their third month...and got organs for the first time and are doing fine.

i can only speak for our little pack...but we were so excited, we wanted to give them a taste of everything...and we wanted to do it quickly....

we found out the hard way that slower is better....their health will not be affected if you keep them on the more easily digestible chicken for a week longer....and that it's a mind set of balance over time...

i still use a scale, because my dogs are small..and it takes nothing for them to gain weight...a few extra ounces here and there with small dogs....especially now that they are getting richer muscle meats, like heart...and organs, like liver..

we still try to stay on the lower end of fatty....but as time goes by, we've added the skin back in and are increasing their fat because they get their energy from fat and protein, not carbs....they also keep their teeth clean eating protein and fat, not carbs....

good luck to you...ask lots of questions....this forum was invaluable to me during the transition and it still is...
 
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