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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

I am new to the forums and I have a 6 month old Morkie (Maltese/Yorkie Mix). He is about 6 pounds now and has always been a fussy eater. We have been feeding him Canidae dry food and have tried everything (mixing with cottage cheese, yogurt, chicken broth) I even once set up a buffet line of eight different organic dry foods and he always went to the Canidae to we stuck with it. Lately, we have been mixing the food with chicken boiled in chicken broth but he is not eating that much of it.

I am worried b/c he already does not eat as much as he should b/c he's a puppy. He should ideally be eating three times a day but he only eats twice a day and not that much. I was able to get a sample of primal pet foods raw food and he ate it with great vigor and quickly threw it up. I guess he liked it but it did not settle well in his little system.

I liked the primal pet foods information that I read which got me interested in feeding raw but primal pet foods is really expensive. Is there a cheaper company making raw food that I can purchase?

If we were to begin feeding him raw food, would the meat sold at Costco work as a good source of meat? I think I would be able to store the meat in my current freezer without a problem b/c it's just myself and my husband and Dozer is only going to grow to be about 7 or 8 pounds (if that).

Since he is a puppy and my understanding is that he is need of certain nutrients, vitamins, etc....will I need to supplement this raw food diet with any supplements and would I just add it to the food or feed them separately?

He is developing quite nicely and a very intelligent dog so I want to make sure that he is mentally and physically developing successfully.

Thanks so much!
Dozer's mommy :)
 

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Welcome!

Small breeds can definitely thrive on a raw diet. (I don't consider the patties to be "raw" since they're processed still..)

If you're feeding a good variety of meat, bones, and organs you won't need to supplement.

Our kitten started on raw when she was only 1lb and our new kitten started at 4lbs

The meat you'd buy at the grocery would be fine. It's cheaper to buy in bulk and if you went that route you could probably buy a years worth of food for about $0.65/lb

Read thru some of the other threads in the Raw forum and ask us any questions you come up with :biggrin:

And read thru our great getting started guide created by our very own RawFedDogs
http://www.skylarzack.com/rawfeeding.htm
 

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Hello,

I am new to the forums and I have a 6 month old Morkie (Maltese/Yorkie Mix). He is about 6 pounds now and has always been a fussy eater. We have been feeding him Canidae dry food and have tried everything (mixing with cottage cheese, yogurt, chicken broth) I even once set up a buffet line of eight different organic dry foods and he always went to the Canidae to we stuck with it. Lately, we have been mixing the food with chicken boiled in chicken broth but he is not eating that much of it.
Welcome!

Lots of little dogs end up being picky eaters. This is totally something that you can take control of, you just have to be strong and take on the role of being pack leader. Since you are the mommy, you decide what he eats and you stick with it, whatever that might be.

What you do is offer him food that you have picked out, not adding anything special to it at all to entice him to eat either. Set it down and give him half hour to eat it. If he doesn't eat it within that time frame, take it back up and save it for next meal time and don't give him anything else to eat in the meantime. Offer the food to him again at the next meal time and give him the same window of time for him to eat. If he doesn't eat it, take it back up once more. Do this until he does eat it, and trust me, he will eat soon enough. Remember that you are not starving him at all, he is CHOOSING not to eat. Soon enough he will catch on that you are the one that decides what and when he eats, and its not him that is in charge.

I am worried b/c he already does not eat as much as he should b/c he's a puppy. He should ideally be eating three times a day but he only eats twice a day and not that much. I was able to get a sample of primal pet foods raw food and he ate it with great vigor and quickly threw it up. I guess he liked it but it did not settle well in his little system.
It might be that he doesn't need quite as much to eat as what is recommended on the bag. Most of the time those values are skewed anyways to get you to feed more to your dog and ultimately buy more from them...in turn making them more money. Is he super skinny? Meaning can you see all of his ribs, hip bone and vertebrae? If so, he needs to eat more, if not he is at a fine body weight. Most small puppies are going to be on more of the thin side which is normal (I work at a vet clinic and we see lots of toy/small breed puppies up here).

With all this being said, I think that switch him to a raw diet is 100% the right thing to do for him. He might have thrown up the bit of raw food that you gave him before because he already had kibble in his stomach (takes up to about 14 hours for kibble to move out of the stomach). And it is not recommended at all to feed them in conjunction. He might have thrown it up because his body is used to digesting kibble and not raw food, the body must adjust to a raw diet gradually.


I liked the primal pet foods information that I read which got me interested in feeding raw but primal pet foods is really expensive. Is there a cheaper company making raw food that I can purchase?
I am not a fan of the pre made stuff. They add in a lot of ingredients that are not necessary or appropriate for a dog. I would recommend feeding a prey model raw diet or just plain meat, bones and organs that you can get anywhere. Its guaranteed to be a lot cheaper and much better for your dog than anything else.

If we were to begin feeding him raw food, would the meat sold at Costco work as a good source of meat? I think I would be able to store the meat in my current freezer without a problem b/c it's just myself and my husband and Dozer is only going to grow to be about 7 or 8 pounds (if that).
Raw meat from Costco would be just fine. Just as long as you feed raw meaty bones (RMB's) and organs. The feeding guideline is 10% raw bones, 10% organs (liver and/or kidney, both is best) and 80% muscle meats. You could start off with nothing but chicken wings for two weeks to get him started.

Since he is a puppy and my understanding is that he is need of certain nutrients, vitamins, etc....will I need to supplement this raw food diet with any supplements and would I just add it to the food or feed them separately?
The only thing that I have ever supplemented our dogs diet is with omega fatty acids, or fish oil caps. Other than that you don't need to add any vitamins or minerals in because everything your puppy needs is in the raw meat, bone and organ. Our Great Dane puppy raised on raw is almost 1 year old now and is doing fantastic! Couldn't be happier :wink:

He is developing quite nicely and a very intelligent dog so I want to make sure that he is mentally and physically developing successfully.
This is guaranteed no better way than on a prey model raw diet. I can assure you that! Two of our dogs have been raised on raw only and they are the epitome of healthy dogs.

Thanks so much!
Dozer's mommy :)
You're welcome! Hope you find this forum helpful...and don't hesitate to ask any question!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Wow!

You guys are great!

I just went home for my lunch break to let him out and attempt to feed him and I already have all of this great information. I am definitely going to sit down with my husband tonight and figure out what we want to do.

Of course, I thought of a couple more questions as soon as I posted my questions.

Can I put the food in a processor to make it easier for him to eat? I only ask b/c his puppy teeth are still falling out and it makes it a little more difficult for him to eat.

Secondly, what about prefrozen meats and fish? I shop at Costco a great deal and they have a lot of options in terms of frozen meats and fish. Is there a difference in the quality between that and the non-frozen meat?

:) Dozer's mommy
 

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I wouldn't process it. You want him tearing thru the meat and crunching the bones. It'll actually help work his puppy teeth out

Frozen, fresh... it's all good. We buy most of our meat frozen in bulk, thaw it all out and then portion it into containers holding 2 days of meat. Then we freeze it all again. We have 2 freezers for our four 70-120lb dogs.

Here's our stand up freezer

 

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Jon and I have raised two dogs successfully on raw starting them out as itty bitty puppies and they never once had an issue with chewing through the bones.

Here's a video of our Dane puppy the first day we brought her home:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nz2rJn4Uhxc

As you can see she had no issue whatsoever. Although, we did whack that chicken wing with a hammer a few times to give her a bit of help with the bones!
 

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My cavalier king charles spaniel is small and has no issue with bones as big as drumsticks!

I think your pup will be fine. More than fine even! :D
 
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Discussion Starter #8
Alrighty...we are thinking about starting with chicken wings this weekend and I have been reading about portions.

Dozer is 7 pounds and might reach 8 pounds. I read that we should begin with 10% of his body weight which would be .7 lbs of meat. Then I read that we should reduce it to between 2% & 3% of his body weight (.16-.24 lbs) when he reaches 3% of what his total body weight will be as an adult.

He is past the point of being 3% of his total body weight and he is more than likely about a pound away from his full adult weight.

Eek! I am going to have to buy a scale :)

Either way, this seems like a tiny bit of food. Are my numbers correct? I am basically trying to figure out how much to feed. We are going to fast Dozer tomorrow and begin feeding on Saturday morning.

If he throws up (which I am expecting), should I feed him more, or should I just let him throw up and wait until the next meal?

Kind of nervous, but let's give it a shot!
Dozer :)
 

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Sometimes for puppies, I've read to feed 10% of their body weight OR 2-3% of their expected adult weight. Since he is so close to his adult weight, I would start with 3% of 8 lbs. So, about .24lbs. It may seem like a tiny amount but he's a tiny dog :)
You can always adjust later if he is getting pudgy or too thin.
I don't know if it is necessary to fast such a small dog for that long. He should be fine with his first meal of the day being raw. If he won't eat it and isn't showing any interest just take it back up and wait until the next meal time. If he throws up (usually not that common, diarrhea maybe) he will probably eat it again.. so no need to feed him more ;) haha. He may or may not get diarrhea, but wings are pretty boney so that should keep his stools firm.
 

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Alrighty...we are thinking about starting with chicken wings this weekend and I have been reading about portions.

Dozer is 7 pounds and might reach 8 pounds. I read that we should begin with 10% of his body weight which would be .7 lbs of meat. Then I read that we should reduce it to between 2% & 3% of his body weight (.16-.24 lbs) when he reaches 3% of what his total body weight will be as an adult.

He is past the point of being 3% of his total body weight and he is more than likely about a pound away from his full adult weight.

Eek! I am going to have to buy a scale :)

Either way, this seems like a tiny bit of food. Are my numbers correct? I am basically trying to figure out how much to feed. We are going to fast Dozer tomorrow and begin feeding on Saturday morning.

If he throws up (which I am expecting), should I feed him more, or should I just let him throw up and wait until the next meal?

Kind of nervous, but let's give it a shot!
Dozer :)
It seems like a small amount of food, but he is a very small dog! Raw foods are more bio available to your dog, so he will eat less but use more of what he does eat. So much of kibble is wasted (ie fillers) that he needs to eat a lot more of it to get basic nutrition.

I suggest you fast him for at least 12 hours before you give him any raw food. This way he doesn't have to combat two different issues at the same time: 1. Having kibble still in his stomach and 2. Switching to a new food. He will just have to adapt to the second issue.

If he does throw up everything you gave him, wait about 4 hours or so and try again. Possibly try feeding him only half of what you tried before, and then giving him the other half another 4 hours later.

You might want to whack the chicken wings you feed him pretty good with a hammer the first few times until he gets the hang of crunching on bones.

Let us know how he does!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
This is all really great information! I am now beginning to think about the different kinds of meat to feed Dozer but I have some reservations about the size of the bones in meats because he is so small.

We are starting him on chicken wings which does not concern me too much but I am thinking about pork chops, steaks, ribs? Are those the ones that I want to feed or should I go for smaller bones?

As suggested, I am going to hammer the chicken wings to help him out the first few times but let him go to town after that.

Will he always eat all of the bones or will he just nibble on it sometimes? I am thinking that some bones might be too big for him to consume.

Oh! What about fish? What kind of fish should I feed him whole? He is pretty small so I can't give him a whole salmon or catfish. Would boneless fillets work? Would sardines do the trick or any other kind of fish? I would like to feed him fish with bones in them because those bones are much smaller and seem more manageable to me.

Thanks,
Dozer's mommy :)
 

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You definitely want to get as much variety as you can.

For pork, I would be careful with chops. If they're bone in the bones can be shaped oddly. With a smaller dog that might not be as much of a problem though as he'd have to chew it up to swallow it. We avoid them because our girls would swallow it whole. Pork bones are fine and easy enough that he should be chewing thru them in no time.

If a bone is too difficult for him to chew up and eat, he'll most likely leave it. We feed our girls beef ribs which get cleaned to the bone. The bone itself is too dense for them to eat BUT it's soft enough for them to use as a rec bone for gnawing. We'll leave a few down for them to come back and chew on later. They tend to all grab a bone in the evening and go to town.

IF he'll eat fish you've got lots of options. You can hit an asian market and get the smaller whole fish like sardines. These are great because they have the guts still in them so you're getting organs in the meal. You could also do whole larger fish. It would just take a little bit of prep. Cut the larger fish into meal size pieces, throw it in freezer bags, and save them for later.
 

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Since he is a small dog I would take advantage of that and feed as many WHOLE prey items as you can get your hands on. Feeding small whole fish are great, because you feed a balanced meal all in one...meat, bones and organs! I'm working on a connection for young chickens that have died during the raising process...since they are small enough for a whole meal. We can feed too many whole prey items (economically) to our big dogs!
 

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This is all really great information! I am now beginning to think about the different kinds of meat to feed Dozer but I have some reservations about the size of the bones in meats because he is so small.
You definately want larger bones than you have in mind. You don't want bones so small that they can be swallowed whole. As for larger bones, he will eat what he wants and leave the rest. You might want to leave some down so he can chew on them later.

We are starting him on chicken wings which does not concern me too much but I am thinking about pork chops, steaks, ribs? Are those the ones that I want to feed or should I go for smaller bones?
Your dog will probably be ok on pork chop bones unless he can get the whole thing in his mouth. Don't worry bout smaller bones. Beef bones will more than likely be too dense for him.

Will he always eat all of the bones or will he just nibble on it sometimes? I am thinking that some bones might be too big for him to consume.
My cats will often leave bone. Sometimes they eat all the bone, sometimes part of the bone, and sometimes just the meat off the bone. Its ok if he leaves some.

Oh! What about fish? What kind of fish should I feed him whole? He is pretty small so I can't give him a whole salmon or catfish. Would boneless fillets work? Would sardines do the trick or any other kind of fish? I would like to feed him fish with bones in them because those bones are much smaller and seem more manageable to me.
Fish are good. You might chop up a larger fish into 3 or 4 or 5 pieces and make several meals out of it.
 

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Just remember not to introduce new meat sources too quickly; they first need good introduction time to each meat source so there is no tummy upset.
 
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