Sunday, January 27, 2013

How **I** Feed Raw

This is for informational purposes. I am of the opinion that big dogs are easier to feed raw than smaller dogs, because you have more wiggle room, especially in regards to bone-in content.

I feed each of my three twice daily, for a total of 2-2.5 lbs daily, or 32-40 oz. PMR (prey model raw) guidelines are for roughly 80% meaty meat, 10% edible bone, 5% organ, 5% other secreting organ (kidney, spleen, testes, brain, thymus, etc.)

Meaty meat includes meat, fat, tendons and sinew.

Daily, this breaks down to 25.6-32 oz meaty meat, 3.2-4 oz edible bone, 1.6-2 oz liver, and 1.6-2 oz other organ. Balance occurs over time, and everyday doesn't have to be balanced.

Not all bone is considered edible, or safe to eat. My main sources of bone are chicken leg quarters, turkey necks, duck quarters and bone-in pork cuts.

The chicken leg quarters I regularly buy also have a back portion, so the bone content of them is approximately 37%. These are large quarters, weighing approximately 16 oz. At 16 oz, the amount of bone is approximately 6 oz. My dogs eat about 64 oz every 2 days. Feeding a chicken leg quarter every other day provides them with their approximately 10% bone. The other 10 or so ounces goes toward their meaty meat intake.

I regularly buy beef and pork liver and kidney from a local ethnic grocery. I sometimes get other species and organs from my coOp, favorite farmer, or My Pet Carnivore.

I cut the liver and kidney into 3-5 oz chunks, usually using a scale, and place the chunks onto a parchment lined cookie sheet. I place the sheet into the freezer, individually freezing the organ chunks. Once frozen, they go into a Ziploc and back into the freezer. I feed organs frozen, as my girl has texture issues.

Over a two day period, my dogs need 3-4 oz of liver and 3-4 oz other organ. One night at dinner they get a chunk of liver weighing 3-5 oz, the next night a chunk of kidney weighing 3-5 oz. Repeat.

Meaty Meat
I feed as much red meat, with as much cut and species variety as possible. Breakfasts are smaller meals, typically 6-12 oz, and always boneless. Dinners are larger meals, 20-30 oz. Every other dinner includes a chicken leg quarter (or other bone-in item) to account for bone content, and a chunk of organ. Thus every other dinner is meaty meat and a chunk of organ.

I feed a variety of meaty meats. Beef heart, pork heart, goat heart, lamb heart, sheep heart, turkey heart. Beef lung, lamb lung, pork lung. Beef and lamb trim. Turkey breast chunks. Venison. Fish. Pork butt and shoulder. Basically any unenhanced meat I can get my hands on.

This is how I feed raw. It's not difficult once you get the swing of it.


  1. I'm new to your blog and I have been reading through some of your posts.
    Wow. Doesn't this get expensive?
    I've thought about feeding my Wolfgang (long haired standard Dachshund) raw, but the idea of him eating raw meat daily grossed me out, so i ended up feeding him dry dog food with good ingredients (blue buffalo freedom).
    When you buy your meat, do you purchase daily or weekly, and how much is it per dog?

    1. I purchase monthly. It works out to about $65 per month per dog. Which is the same, or cheaper, than many premium brands of kibble.

  2. I really think raw is a great idea. I used to feed pre made raw, natures variety, but it was costing way to much. My husband is not into the idea of feeding non premade raw so we have not tried that. They eat Orijen kibble and some Wellness Core. Im thinking in the future if I have all small Ill go back ot premade raw

    urban hounds

  3. How did you go about finding where to buy your organ meat (heart, lung, kidney, etc.)? I checked with our local meat place and they said that they throw away the organ meat as it was too much trouble to sell (I guess, package, get inspected, etc.)

  4. Replies
    1. Great to "meet" another raw feeder! I, too, used to feel that feeding small dogs raw was more complicated, because I used to feed raw to my Malamute mix, who was 70+ pounds. (My two current dogs are sixteen pounds and nine and a half pounds.) But once I got used to balancing that small of an amount, it was no big deal, and they do just as well on it as my big guy did.

  5. Worth reading post. Every breed of dog is different and so are their eating habits. There are different diet types for dogs. Raw food is very beneficial for dogs. It makes shinier coats, healthier skin, cleaner teeth, higher energy levels, smaller stools. Many NYC organic raw dog food suppliers offer raw food for dogs.

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  7. What do you think about dry pet nutrition? Because my dog has problems with stomach and I am afraid to give raw food to it.
    All the best, Kate from handmade writings
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