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OK, just adopted a dog. He is 6 years old. Weight on the scales at the vet today is 125.9 lbs. They said his body weight is perfect. He is massive wide, very narrow waste, in fact I thought he was undernourished because to actually see a dog that is 6 years of age and not a little overweight or badly over weight is odd. I thought for sure something was wrong with him. Well 150 dollars later in blood tests and such, he checks out fine. Now this dog was on the BARF diet. I have read about it, but I kind of like the RPM diet. Both seem great. So did more research and have just decided to jump in full force. Plus this guy won't even touch kibble. He looks at it, looks at me, and I can tell he is saying "YEA RIGHT! Where's my chicken!"

So I have worked out a basic starter diet for him. What I will feed him and how much and will just basically do a rotation of this. This is assuming I can actually find places to get all the items. That is another thing I am having trouble with. I hope for a little while chicken and fish will be OK as I build my network for the rest of the foods.

Would some of you that are more experienced with the RPM diet give me your input please. If I am just way off base with what I think I need to start getting? I built this from what I read here and read on the Internet.

So, at 125.9 lbs, I just based his initial diet at 126 lbs. And trust me, he is ripped so to speak. I can see ribs, his butt is so narrow and tiny I really thought he was under weight. Then he has massive legs in the rear. I was assured by my vet he looks great and to keep him as is. Don't add any weight to him.

3.75 lbs of raw meat per day. I will do two meals, 1.9 for breakfast and dinner.

Monday - chicken backs, beef heart (.9 lbs)
Tuesday - turkey necks, pork ribs
Wednesday - turkey wings, salmon or tilapia or other fish, whatever I can find best price on.
Thursday - Green Tripe (.9 lbs), chicken quaters
Friday - Start the rotation over again.

Everything is 1.9 lbs except for beef heart and tripe.

Grand total for a month, give or take:

chicken neck - 15 lbs.
chicken quaters - 15 lbs.
turkey neck - 15 lbs.
turkey wing - 15 lbs.
beef heart - 8 lbs
green tripe - 8 lbs
fish - 8 lbs
port ribs - 8 lbs

If this is all correct I am not so sure I can afford this all up front. So far, calling local butcher shops, they just don't get in enough of this stuff where I live to get scraps. They mostly just order in chicken quaters or the whole chicken. They sell it as is, don't really butcher much in the way of chicken. It's cheaper then a grocery store, but still not within my budget. From them a whole chicken is about 5 dollars and he said that chicken is about 5-6 lbs. But I don't see anything about just giving a whole chicken to the dog, legs, breast, wings, thigh, all. At least what I have read has not really mentioned that. So I will have a lot of chicken breast for me to eat just to make up the amount I need for his meals.

Same goes with Turkey. No one really butchers turkeys to get me necks and wings. I would have to buy the whole thing.

Beef heart I am coming up empty on. Beef ribs I can get, but cost too much.

Fish I really will just have to bite the bullet and buy at the super market.

Green Tripe I will just have to order off the internet. Its kind of expensive but I think I have some people I can go in with on those orders. I am talking with the breeder on some of this. Since their diet is a little different, she doesn't order in a lot of what I would be doing. I see some posts of what people spend per day on this and I can tell you i'm way way WAY over that.

If I am not doing something wrong in the diet, then my cost problem is just finding places to get what I need for a good price. If I am doing this all wrong then what should I change? That will probably also help me in costs as well.

I live in Arkansas, the Fort Smith area. I thought for sure with Tyson being in the state, just an hour away from me, I could load up on more chicken/turkey then I could possibly want. Turns out that is not the case. Either I have to know someone that can get me in the door or they really don't offer stuff like this to the general publilc. Nothing with butchers, restaurants, or grocery stores. Everything is pre-packaged, they really don't do a lot of what I would need, or at least on my list everyone said nope, we don't get that kind of stuff in.

Thanks,

Brian
 

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So, at 125.9 lbs, I just based his initial diet at 126 lbs. And trust me, he is ripped so to speak. I can see ribs, his butt is so narrow and tiny I really thought he was under weight. Then he has massive legs in the rear. I was assured by my vet he looks great and to keep him as is. Don't add any weight to him.

3.75 lbs of raw meat per day. I will do two meals, 1.9 for breakfast and dinner.
Your first problem is that you are getting way too structured but don't worry, many people do in the beginning. Instead of worrying about 3.75 lbs, shoot for "something between 3 and 4 lbs. One meal might be 3 lbs and another 4 and still another half way in between. You will never feed two meals exactly the same weight. Nature just doesn't work that way. Think in terms of "one chicken quarter" or "two chicken backs" or "one turkey neck". The exact weights of each will always vary.

Monday - chicken backs, beef heart (.9 lbs)
Tuesday - turkey necks, pork ribs
Wednesday - turkey wings, salmon or tilapia or other fish, whatever I can find best price on.
Thursday - Green Tripe (.9 lbs), chicken quaters
Friday - Start the rotation over again.

Everything is 1.9 lbs except for beef heart and tripe.
Don't worry so much about the menu. Just feed something you haven't fed lately. Reach in the freezer and pull out something that you didn't feed last meal. If your dog has already been fed BARF, then you shouldn't have to be concerned with adding a new protein source ever week or so. He should already be used to those. If not, let us know and we can direct you how to introduce new meat sources.

If this is all correct I am not so sure I can afford this all up front.
You can, you just haven't learned how to shop for a raw fed dog yet. It takes several months to get the hang of it. I feed 2 Great Danes and 2 cats for less than $100/month.

So far, calling local butcher shops, they just don't get in enough of this stuff where I live to get scraps. They mostly just order in chicken quaters or the whole chicken.
First, don't call anyone. A telephone call in an interruption. Visit these places in person. I have good luck with small independent grocery stores that cut and sell their own meat. Those are getting harder to find but they are out there. Go in person and talk to the meat manager. Tell him that you want to buy things like chicken backs, quarters, turkeys necks, beef heart, etc, by the case. Explain to him that he can simply add your order to his and tell you when the order will be in. Tell him he doesn't have to do anything to the meat. Just put it in the cooler until you get by to pick it up and you will be there that day. This is real easy money for him. He has almost no work. Anyway, get to know him and you should have a good working relationship. You could also buy whole chickens by the case and cut each in half and feed half a chicken at a time. Or you could quarter them. I have found in my area that quarters are cheaper/lb than whole chickens to that is what I buy.

They sell it as is, don't really butcher much in the way of chicken.
Thats ok, once you get the hang of it, cutting up a chicken is no big deal.

But I don't see anything about just giving a whole chicken to the dog, legs, breast, wings, thigh, all. At least what I have read has not really mentioned that. So I will have a lot of chicken breast for me to eat just to make up the amount I need for his meals.
Sure you can feed a whole chicken to your dog. I know lots of people who do. And more that feed half chickens. All you need to make 2 half chickens out of a whole chicken is a pair of cooking shears.

Same goes with Turkey. No one really butchers turkeys to get me necks and wings. I would have to buy the whole thing.
You can buy turkey necks by the case. I have many times. They are pretty cheap also. They will probably have to be special ordered like the rest of your stuff but thats no big deal either.

Beef heart I am coming up empty on. Beef ribs I can get, but cost too much.
Again, you can special order beef heart by the case. Don't worry bout beef ribs. I never feed them.

Green Tripe I will just have to order off the internet. Its kind of expensive but I think I have some people I can go in with on those orders.
I never feed green tripe. Its a highly overrated food. It doesn't have the mystical properties some give it.

I see some posts of what people spend per day on this and I can tell you i'm way way WAY over that.
And you will be for a few months until you learn the best places to get this stuff and how to talk to the managers to get what you want.

If I am not doing something wrong in the diet, then my cost problem is just finding places to get what I need for a good price. If I am doing this all wrong then what should I change? That will probably also help me in costs as well.
Believe me, costs are not going to be the big deal you think they are. Once you figure it out, it will be much cheaper than feeding a premium kibble.

I live in Arkansas, the Fort Smith area. I thought for sure with Tyson being in the state, just an hour away from me, I could load up on more chicken/turkey then I could possibly want.
They will probably sell it to you by the case.

Nothing with butchers, restaurants, or grocery stores. Everything is pre-packaged, they really don't do a lot of what I would need, or at least on my list everyone said nope, we don't get that kind of stuff in.
Just start off with your chicken stuff. If you feed nothing but chicken for a few weeks or a couple of months, it won't be a big deal. You will learn how to get the other stuff in time. Look for sale stuff. I get Boston Butt pork roasts on sale whenever I see them. I will by 6 or 8 at a time when they go below $2/lb. Sometimes I can get them for $1.59/lb.

Don't get discouraged. It will all come together and you will wonder what you were so stressed over. :smile:
 

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First, congrats on looking at PMR. It's the best thing you can do for your dog. BTW, what is the breed (or breeds)?

Three things in your plan I see right off the bat.

First, you're over complicating this. You don't need so much variety every day, nor do you need so much variety from one day to the next. You should start with chicken and stick with it for awhile to see how he does, maybe a week since he's transitioning from BARF and won't require as much adjustment. Add new stuff in as you find it. It takes time to find all the right sources for stuff but you will.

Second, it looks like you have way too much overall bone in this diet. For instance, turkey necks and pork ribs on the same day? Both have a very high percentage of bone content. You need to provide more meat on a daily basis. When I feed pork ribs, for instance, I also add chunks of pork roast to the meal so they get their bone and a little meat from the ribs and more meat from the roast for a higher overall ratio of meat to bone. If I feed chicken or turkey necks, I also add in another all-meat source so they are getting enough meat.

Third, you're going to have to add organ meat in sooner or later. Liver, kidney, spleen, etc. Beef heart doesn't count as organ meat. Nutritionally it is muscle meat. Also, don't worry too much about fish. You can feed it occasionally, it doesn't have to be so frequent.

I'm sure others will add some advice, these are just the things that jumped out at me after a quick read. I'm surprised chicken is so hard to come by there. Most of the chicken I buy here in So. Cal. that is cheap comes from your area (Ft. Smith and Springfield, AR). We have local chicken farms here in California but it's usually quite a bit more money than Arkansas chicken so that is what I feed my dogs. I've bought it here for as little as 39 cents/lb and never more than .79/lb. (for quarters with backs attached). I'm sure if you dig a little harder, you'll find a good source. I'm sure someone will advise you to visit in person rather than the phone too but I'll leave that to those who have experience dealing with small grocers and butchers.
 

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I say feed the tripe, and better yet if you can find tripe/trachea blend feed that as it is a great source of chondroiton for the joints, my dogs do great on tripe and they love it and if I let them eat that all the time they'd be "Happy Campers"
 

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google yahoo groups, too, for co ops in or near your area...read the description stated by the group and also look to see how many members there are and when the last posting was before you join.

not everyone is lucky enough to find co ops that get bulk orders for food, but you never know.

people also put ads on craigs list, generally in the farm and garden section....

see if there is a forum for arkansas raw feeders...i've noticed there are forums and yahoo groups for just about every state in the union...

since you live near tyson, that's already been addressed....

but i'm sure there are farms that supply tyson....might want to see if you can find them...

look for ethnic stores and ask about buying in bulk.

i'm not going to say what i spent when i started out with my two...and believe me, i have one that would be an appetiser for your dog....i'm now down to 1.78/lb and that's only because i'm getting some meats i normally wouldn't get...

at the stores where i buy....i'm almost to a dollar a pound....

it just takes time...you'll get there...

i know, when i lived in pennsylvania, we just visited the farmers' markets and bought whole cows and pigs and chickens....do you have an area like that?

it was a two hour drive, but what the hell.....what we bought fed us for a year...and was oh so cheap....

the other thing to consider....since your dog is healthy...you'll most likely, other than genetic disorders, spend less at the vet...so more can go toward food. think about all those teeth cleanings you won't have to pay for. malia cost us 500.00 for hers two years ago and she had lost a tooth.
 
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