What do you feed your dogs?
What do you feed your dogs?
Curious as to what people out there are feeding their dogs and other pets. Mainly what types of raw foods.
I don’t have any pets, but Ani Phyo has a few doggy recipes in her book. I hate to admit it, but the wet dog food sounded like it would make a decent human food pate. She indicates in her book that her dog loves fresh durian and dehydrated sweet potato chunks, among other foods. She makes nut and seed bases with vegetable peels and bits she cuts away when prepping her own food. She also adds olive oil for the dog’s coat and spirulina for the chlorophyll. You may find that your dog is as happy as a raw vegan as you are. You’ll just have to introduce new foods one at a time and lead by example. If you eat it and enjoy it, your dog will be eager to try it too. You’ll know pretty quickly what he/she does and doesn’t like.
I disagree. I believe that dogs are carnivores and by depriving them of meat, you are depriving them of what nature intended them to eat. Perhaps raw meat is the way to go – not sure – but seriously, I don’t believe they were designed to eat all vegetables.
I make my dog’s raw (not vegan) food. I put carrots, apples, greens, kiwis, berries, celery, squashes, sweet paotaoes, snow peas, and other veggies in the food processor and blend into tiny pieces. Then I add in a couple of free range chicken eggs and their shells (for the added calcium), all-natural, organic plain yougurt (for the probiotics), sometimes I add in some raw flax seeds I have ground up in my coffee grinder, and then add in some ground raw, all natural meat- whether it be ground beef or ground up chicken necks, and also add in ofal sometimes (chicken and beef livers, hearts, and organs) and mix it all together. I usually make enough for about 3-4 days and store it in a container in my fridge so I don’t have to do it everyday. I have also added in cooked chicken broth and cooked canned pure pumpkin at times, but not very often as I am not real keen about feeding him cooked nor feeding cooked same time as raw either.
My dog’s thyroid almost completely shut down on him over a year ago (Dobermans are prone to this I consequently learned) and I worked with a vet, both holistic and western trained, and we tried different natural thryroid meds, and then out of desperation of not seeing any results (his weight was dangerous and affecting his health in numerous ways- there were other symptoms, but not being able to lose the weight was the most immediatly dangerous of them) I even begrudgingly put him on a synthetic med, but I kept after my vet that I believe our bodies can heal themselves if we just provide the right environment and tools it needs and that I wasn’t done searching for a natural solution. She got a hold of a holistic vet mentor who had a similar doggy patient whom the owners fed an only fruit and veggie juice diet to for a month and had wonderful results. Although my vet didn’t recommend it for a long time (she’s all for raw, just not an all vegan diet for a long period), she thought 30 days was a good time to hopefully allow his body to detox. Well, it has worked beautifully!
I couldn’t get my dog to eat straight veggies w/o any kind of meat in it, so I never did do the all veggie/fruit thing, but I did cut his meat consumption down quite a lot and replace with more veggies and fruits and I have seen a tremendous improvement. I weaned him off his synthetic drug starting the day he went high veggie and within 3 days he was done with them for good (thyroid meds are supposed to be for life once you start them as they atrophy what’s left of the functioning thyroid). ALL the symptoms of the hypothyroidism are gone (and were within the first week!) and he has lost weight and is so much more energetic acting. So I will continue to feed him this way- high raw veggie and fruit with some raw meat. At least 2 or 3 days a week I do give him whole raw chicken so he is getting bones still. And he gets a raw, 2 inch long, beef femur bone every night to chew on and get the marrow out. Bones are important for their teeth and gums, keeping the jaw from atrophying, calcium, and other things I’m sure I am forgetting and raw bones do not cause splintering problems like cooked bones will. Just be aware that if your dog swallows chunks of bone that cannot pass through their intestines, they will throw them back up- usually on light colored carpet in the middle of the night when you are trying to sleep. ;) Although I cannot afford to get him another blood test done right away to see his thyroid function readings after this change in diet, I am confident in his state of health now, seeing such clear and obvious results.
I do sometimes feed probiotics (powdered, human-grade quality that you can mix into their food, just takes a wee bit) instead of the yogurt, too. And I am considering adding in some broccoli and caulifower (and spinach)eventually occassionally, but since they have goitrogens in them that can hinder thyroid function I have left them out. With a healthy dog I would feed those, too.
Foods to beware of for dogs include: Macadamia and Brazil nuts, chocolate, some mushrooms, tomatoes, onions, potatoes (white type) and grapes… but some people do feed their dogs these sometimes and they seem to be ok, so use your best judgement after reseraching it yourself.
Oh, and other bonuses of feeding raw (besides the huge health benefits) are that your dog’s poop will start decomposing almost immediatly so not as big a deal cleaning yard- turns white within a day – no preservatives in the food!), his or her breath will not be stinky anymore (pretty much no odor), he or she will also poop less (regular dog food has lots of filler crap that they just poop out).
Dogs are carnivores. While just like any other animal, they can survive on just about any diet, they can only thrive on the foods that they have evolved eating.
I have an 11 year old border collie and 3 adult cats that have been feeding raw meat, bones and organs for a year now. They have also progressed health wise. I only wish I had made the transition sooner.
For anyone that’s interested, there is a great yahoo group on this subject called rawfeeding. It’s a very intelligent group with thousands of members. :)
BARF (bones and raw food) diets can do WONDERS for a dogs health, as aspire’s story proves. Start out under the supervision of a vet though, as different dogs with different health issues need different balances of nutrients. Many “western” vets are into complimentary medicine, and there are plenty of holistic vets too. I believe both types of medicine have their strong and weak points, as with human medicine. The vets I used to work for practiced complimentary medicine.
A dog should not be on a pure vegan or vegetarian diet. They will not get the vital nutrients they need. They have sharp teeth for grabbing and shredding flesh and a short digestive tract…their bodies are designed to be carnivorous and have been that way since the species evolved. There are plenty of veggies and fruits that are good for them and I’ve always supplemented my foster dogs’ diets with fruit and veggie treats and additions. My last foster dog (a cute little pug) LOVED blueberries. :) I would freeze them and take them out one at a time as a treat, and he’d dance around all excited, and roll it around the floor when I gave it to him before chomping on it. Too cute!
Be sure you know what fruits and veggies are good for your dog, and which are not safe for dogs to eat. Here’s some info:
SAFE FRUIT AND VEG:
apples, avocado, bananas, blueberries. broccoli, cantaloupe, carrots, green beens, papaya, pumpkin, SWEET potatoes, watermelon, cranberries
WHAT TO AVOID:
tomatoes, spinach, grapes & raisins (will cause kidney failure), eggplant (nightshade family veg in general), peppers, onions, raw garlic, chocolate or any cacao derived food
Branwyn- thanks for the advice on the spinach and that avocados are ok to feed (I’d read both so wasn’t sure although I know my dog does lke them).
No problem! We have an amazing dog food “boutique” here called Top Dogs that we’d send all our patients to for high quality foods and prepackaged frozen raw foods, for people that didn’t want to do the BARF prep work themselves. The staff there is very knowledgeable and gave me an awesome like, 6 page paper on dog foods and additives in commercial foods, what’s good and bad, and that list of fruit and veggies. They recommend supplementing dogs’ diets with safe fruits and veggies and avoiding the junky chemical laden commercial treats.
And while they still sell high quality dog treats, they still recommend the produce (which they obviously don’t sell)...so they make no money off that, but it’s the best thing for the dogs. That makes me trust them even more, because they’ve got the animals’ best interests at heart, not money.
If you are feeding a dog vegan food, 1sweetpea, I think you are not doing the right thing. Dogs and cats are carnvivores with a very acidic body pH. They will not tolerate alkaline foods (vegan foods) and they cannot digest starches. In the wild, cats and dogs eat meat. They eat whole, unground, animals.
RawKidChef—please reread what I wrote. I never said not to feed pets meats. I do not have any pets. I’m only repeating what I read in Ani Phyo’s book. She rescued a Rhodesian Ridgeback who was badly mistreated and grossly underweight. She feeds her dog a vegan, raw diet and the dog is thriving. Of course, it makes sense to me to feed your dogs and cats meat, since they prefer it and their digestive systems are built for it (unlike ours), but dogs and cats also eat grass and plants, so I think some raw vegan foods could be quite healthy.
Yes, sometimes dogs and cats do eat grass, but it is just eliminated from their bodies. In fact, sometimes my dog decides to eat grass from the backyard. When she does this, she has a hard time eliminating. The grass that she ate actually comes out fully intact because her body has no use for it. And yes, I do examine my dog’s feces… ;)
Ah, yes, now I see. I agree they do need to eat grass, but fruits and vegetables do not digest because they can’t process starches. It’s rough on the kidneys, because their bodies are naturally acidic. Grasses are actually more like grains. It provides fiber, and like swayze says, does not digest. It is only a digestion aid. But it does beat me, coz I’d figure it’s pretty alkaline. But it does not form much of the diet. But I agree with grass, flowers, and certain trees and leaves, but wolves and tigers don’t pluck and peel bananas or chew broccoli in he wilds. But, I see your point, some plants are good.
My dog has been raw longer then I’ve been. He usually eats raw chicken, beef bones and pork.
But lately – he’s been stealing my fruit and devouring it, especially apples, mangos and bananas!
So I’ve started feeding him some raw plant food as well in his diet, like apples, bananas, and carrots, and I know he’s enjoying it. He gobbles it right up alongside his raw meaty bones.
Moth, hehehe…my dog also enjoys stealing my fruit on occasion. She really likes cantaloupe, I think because it might have a similar texture to raw meat. Yuck…
Even my maine coon is doing it now! The other night, I was watching a movie with a big bowl of grapes by my side when he came up along side me and snatched one! He started growling at me so I just let him have it. ;)
dogs are omnivores…eat meat and plants food. we choose to keep our dogs vegan due to ethical reasons. they do not eat all raw but love raw food. actually pretty much any food. ok, go ahead and attack me for not feeding my dogs meat but know that the longest living dog is vegetarian and healthy.
this does not go for cats. they are carnivores 100%.
I should have mentioned that my Doberman was on a raw diet, but mainly all meat, before I swithced him to the high- fruit- and- veggie- plus- meat- diet.
I believe the 6 previous years of ignorantly feeding him a crappy store-bought cooked kibble compounded his genetic predisposition to hypothyroidism. I had switched him over to a high-quality all -natural meat cooked kibble (Evo brand) for a few months when finding out what was really in the typical dogfood (and thankfully before the whole Chinese petfood tragedy), then switched him over to a pre-made, raw, frozen, balanced, organic, ground up, meat and bones w/some veggies patty (Primal brand). Looked like frozen hamburgers with flecks of veggies that you just thawed out. I then started adding in occasional treats of organic, raw, whole chickens… which after a few times of eating that, he then proceeded to refuse to eat the raw prepared patties anymore at all. So I then went to feeding him all meat and bones from Whole Foods.
So he’d been on raw for a few months before his hypothyroidism got to the point that I noticed something was really wrong, besides just being lethargic and not being able to lose weight like he should have been, and finally took him to the vet to have bloodwork done. (I do not vaccinate my dog either anymore every year after learning about that, so have no need to take him into vet each year.) I have no doubt that eating raw is prolonging his life along with having improved his health .
thanks everyone for your replies! :)
My 40 pound 2 year old get chicken necks 5 times a week, plus some raw crackers and a little fruit. For two days I give him fresh garden processed veggies plus offal. For a snack he gets some sea veggies and we share a green smoothie most mornings, if he doesn’t get a smoothie, I give him yogurt or a couple raw organic eggs.
i just fed my dog some carrots and she loved em!