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I began switching my dogs over to a grain free diet about two years ago. After that I continued doing a lot of research concerning canine nutrition and came across the idea of feeding raw food. After doing a lot of research about a raw food diet, I felt that, the kibble I was feeding them (Innova Evo) was not meeting all of their nutrition needs like a raw diet could. It was then I began switching them over to a pre-made raw diet which they have been on for the past year and a half. I've had them mainly on Natures Variety but have recently started changing over to a mix of Primal and Bravo and I supplement with Eicosaderm and Solid Gold Seameal.

My question is for those of you who used to or do feed a pre-made raw diet,
do you feel that, a pre-made raw diet, if supplemented with and given raw meaty bones to chew on 1-2 times a week, is as good of a diet as a prey model diet is? For those of you who do feel this, what pre-made raw food do you feed and what supplements do you use?

For those of you who don't feel this way, how did you go about switching from a pre-made raw diet to a prey model diet?

I like the convenience of a pre-made raw diet, but, most importantly I want what is best for my pets. I am not sure I am capable of making them a raw diet that will meet all of their nutritional needs like a pre-made raw diet can. Did I mention two out of the four of mine are INCREDIBLY picky eaters and whenever I try to give them anything besides a pre-made raw medallion to eat they absolutely refuse...They all also have long hair and are inside dogs so I'm also concerned as to just how messy a prey model diet would be. Right now, they have plastic covered bowls that their food thaws in over night, I cut their medallions into tiny pieces so it doesn't get all over their beards when they eat. They eat their food in the morning, their food dishes are sterilized and then I put their evenings food in the fridge to defrost.
I'm not exactly sure how one goes about feeding a prey model raw diet, is it similar in the fact that you defrost the meals the night before or is it entirely different?

Any information or comments will be greatly appreciated!
Thank you!
 

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My main complaint with pre-made raw foods like those, is that they are very bone heavy and they have a lot of species-inappropriate ingredients like all of the fruits and veggies in it, which have no place in a carnivore's diet.

That being said, any raw diet is better than kibble, so if you want to stick with it, by all means you're still doing a good job.

Prey model raw is great because they get their raw bone-chewing in every day, which is so important for yorkies who are pre-disposed to having dental issues to begin with. With prey model raw, this problem will probably be nonexistent for you.

Prey model raw is really easy and convenient, as much so as the pre-made anyway. You just put what you want to feed the next morning in the fridge and let it defrost over night. Your picky pups may get a bit confused by it at first, but they'll figure it out soon enough. It should also be cleaner for their beards since it's all in one piece instead of several pieces like how you cut up the medallions.

All you do to switch them over is start feeding them prey model raw instead of pre-made raw. Simple as that!

Check out Rawfeddogs' website for more specific details about how to "balance" the prey model raw diet (all you need is meat, bones, and organs): Skylar, Zack, and Abby on the WEB
 

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My question is for those of you who used to or do feed a pre-made raw diet, do you feel that, a pre-made raw diet, if supplemented with and given raw meaty bones to chew on 1-2 times a week, is as good of a diet as a prey model diet is?
Nowhere close.

For those of you who don't feel this way, how did you go about switching from a pre-made raw diet to a prey model diet?
Well I was just feeding the premix once a week so I just stopped. I only fed it 3 or 4 months. If you are feed exclusively premix and want to switch, I would just stop feeding the premix and the next day begin with my method of beginning a prey model diet listed on my web page in my sig.

I like the convenience of a pre-made raw diet, but, most importantly I want what is best for my pets. I am not sure I am capable of making them a raw diet that will meet all of their nutritional needs like a pre-made raw diet can.
Of course you can. It's very very simple. Im not sure that the premixes give your dog what he needs. Many of the premix companies are just small companies operating out of the home kitchen.

Did I mention two out of the four of mine are INCREDIBLY picky eaters and whenever I try to give them anything besides a pre-made raw medallion to eat they absolutely refuse...
They are picky because you allow it. This is pretty easy to fix. I can help you with that when you decide to switch to completey prey model.

They all also have long hair and are inside dogs so I'm also concerned as to just how messy a prey model diet would be. Right now, they have plastic covered bowls that their food thaws in over night, I cut their medallions into tiny pieces so it doesn't get all over their beards when they eat.
Well haven't they done a good job of training mommy (or daddy) to feed them exactly what they want but also to do all the work for them. This also needs to stop and will stop with prey model.

They eat their food in the morning, their food dishes are sterilized and then I put their evenings food in the fridge to defrost.
Thats fine. You won't feed most meals in a bowl in the future. My dog get 2 or 3 meals a week from bowls. The rest of the time, I stand at the kitchen sink and hand out animal parts. I might wash their bowls every few weeks. They do a good job of cleaning them themselves. :smile:

I'm not exactly sure how one goes about feeding a prey model raw diet, is it similar in the fact that you defrost the meals the night before or is it entirely different?
It's exactly the same.
 

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Well put... as usual.. All I can add is good luck! And it's great your thinking about switching :biggrin:
 

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Discussion Starter #5
My main complaint with pre-made raw foods like those, is that they are very bone heavy and they have a lot of species-inappropriate ingredients like all of the fruits and veggies in it, which have no place in a carnivore's diet.

That being said, any raw diet is better than kibble, so if you want to stick with it, by all means you're still doing a good job.

Prey model raw is great because they get their raw bone-chewing in every day, which is so important for yorkies who are pre-disposed to having dental issues to begin with. With prey model raw, this problem will probably be nonexistent for you.

Prey model raw is really easy and convenient, as much so as the pre-made anyway. You just put what you want to feed the next morning in the fridge and let it defrost over night. Your picky pups may get a bit confused by it at first, but they'll figure it out soon enough. It should also be cleaner for their beards since it's all in one piece instead of several pieces like how you cut up the medallions.

All you do to switch them over is start feeding them prey model raw instead of pre-made raw. Simple as that!

Check out Rawfeddogs' website for more specific details about how to "balance" the prey model raw diet (all you need is meat, bones, and organs): Skylar, Zack, and Abby on the WEB
That was one of my concerns as well...when I first switched them over to a pre-made raw diet I thought all the fruits and vegetables in the formula was a good thing but, the more I've learned, they don't really seem appropriate for a canine to be eating.

The raw bone chewing is one of the big reasons why I want to have them switched over to a prey model raw diet. I brush their teeth daily but, it's extremely difficult to keep plaque off of their teeth and all I hear about people with their dogs on prey model raw diets is "GREAT TEETH".
It doesn't sound any harder to do from what you have said, I will definitely be looking at the link you posted.

Thanks for your help! :smile:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
They are picky because you allow it. This is pretty easy to fix. I can help you with that when you decide to switch to completey prey model.



Well haven't they done a good job of training mommy (or daddy) to feed them exactly what they want but also to do all the work for them. This also needs to stop and will stop with prey model.



Thats fine. You won't feed most meals in a bowl in the future. My dog get 2 or 3 meals a week from bowls. The rest of the time, I stand at the kitchen sink and hand out animal parts. I might wash their bowls every few weeks. They do a good job of cleaning them themselves. :smile:



It's exactly the same.

I have been feeding the pre-made raw exclusively. I am sure a part of them being picky is because I allow it. It's difficult, as my smallest one is 2 pounds and she is one of the "picky" eaters. With a larger dog, if he/she refused to eat, to a certain point, I could "wait them out", where as, with her, I can't let her skip a meal if she refuses to eat because she is so little, if she doesn't eat, she goes into a hypoglycemic attack....so, with her, pretty much anyway I can get her to eat is what I do and I'm sure that has not helped with her being "picky" but, probably made things worse in the long run :cool:

Now, I do have one other question, you mentioned standing at your sink and handing out animal parts...do you keep them confined to your kitchen when you do this? Mine have a habbit of taking any treat I give them or anything not in a bowl off to their beds to lay down and eat and I'm thinking having "animal parts" in the beds they sleep in probably isn't the most sanitary thing in the world for them...
 

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Well put... as usual.. All I can add is good luck! And it's great your thinking about switching :biggrin:
Thanks! It's something I really want to do, as I really do feel that is the best diet they could be on...now, if I can only get them to actually "eat it" when I give it to them I'll be doing good :)
 

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Oh and with pups so tiny as yours, you'll want to do small parts like chicken necks and wings. For the picky pup, you can try searing the outside of the chicken for about 3 seconds on each side, sometimes this helps entice picky eaters because it makes the meat smell more appealing.

I think as far as eating goes, you can confine them if you want to, like in the kitchen, laundry room, bathroom, etc if you don't want them eating in other parts of the house. RFD just lets his dogs eat anywhere and they always lick their spot clean afterwards, but if you don't want to do that it's understandable, I don't! My dogs eat outside and they don't mind in the slightest, but I can tell how that would be problematic for yorkies in cold weather, so that part is really up to you.
 

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Now, I do have one other question, you mentioned standing at your sink and handing out animal parts...do you keep them confined to your kitchen when you do this?
Many people do, I don't. It's not going to be as nasty as you have it pictured for them to eat in their bed. Possibly you could put a towel in their bed and just let them eat there. You could wash their towel once a week or so. You could put a towel or plastic table cloth down in the kitchen and teach them to eat there.
 

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Oh and with pups so tiny as yours, you'll want to do small parts like chicken necks and wings. For the picky pup, you can try searing the outside of the chicken for about 3 seconds on each side, sometimes this helps entice picky eaters because it makes the meat smell more appealing.

I think as far as eating goes, you can confine them if you want to, like in the kitchen, laundry room, bathroom, etc if you don't want them eating in other parts of the house. RFD just lets his dogs eat anywhere and they always lick their spot clean afterwards, but if you don't want to do that it's understandable, I don't! My dogs eat outside and they don't mind in the slightest, but I can tell how that would be problematic for yorkies in cold weather, so that part is really up to you.
Thanks! I think I'm going to go shopping this weekend and get my "supplies" and give prey model a try this upcoming week *fingers crossed*

I think mine would certainly throw a fit if I made them eat outside in the winter....they do get cold very easily because they are so small.
My concern with letting them run off with their food is sometimes I have my nephews over and they are younger and I wouldn't want them getting sick if they messed with the dogs beds and then ended up putting their hands in their mouth later etc. So, I will probably just put up some baby gates in the kitchen and maybe put one or two special beds in there that they can lay down in if they want to and wash them once a week or something like that...
 

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Many people do, I don't. It's not going to be as nasty as you have it pictured for them to eat in their bed. Possibly you could put a towel in their bed and just let them eat there. You could wash their towel once a week or so. You could put a towel or plastic table cloth down in the kitchen and teach them to eat there.
That's a good idea too! Towels would be much easier to wash than their beds.....thanks!
 
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