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The Raw Pet Food Diet
A raw pet food diet is about feeding cats and dogs what they are genetically and biologically designed to eat. Food that is raw and whole such as, raw meat, bones, organs, and raw fruits and vegetables; NOT processed commercial dog food. It is not hard to feed your pet a raw food diet; it just requires the right knowledge.
The benefits of a raw food diet are noticeable almost immediately:

  • Increased levels of energy
  • Leaner body mass
  • Healthier and cleaner teeth
  • Improved skin and coat
  • Improved water balance
  • Stronger immune system
  • Stronger reproductive systems
  • Improved odor and breath
  • Increased mobility in older dogs, etc.

The Basics

A raw pet food diet consists of raw meat, uncooked bones either whole or ground, well ripened, fully crushed fruit, such as whole oranges, pears, bananas, berries, papaya, or apricots; green leafy vegetables including silver beat, broccoli, celery, cauliflower, and spinach; herbs such as offal, parsley, and root vegetables such as carrots and sugar beats; raw eggs; dairy, such as yogurt; and vitamin supplements. Your dog's raw food diet should consist of 60% raw meaty bones, 20% fruit and vegetables, 10% offal, and 10% various additive supplements. While your cat's raw food diet should consist of 70% raw meaty bones and meat, up to 5% vegetables and possibly fruit (if your cat accepts), 15% offal, and 10% human food scraps or other supplements.

Raw Meaty Bones
Raw uncooked bones incorporated within this diet are important not only because they are soft, chewable cartilage that are rich in vitamins; but they are also the bulk of your pet's water, protein, fat, minerals, and energy requirements. The most common raw meaty bones fed to pets are chicken or turkey backs, necks, wings, frames, carcasses, and chicken leg quarters. However, lamb, rabbit, duck, and pork are also great substitutes and consumable by cats and dogs.

Take note that bones must not be cooked. Cooked bones can shatter when chewed, and can cause life-threatening risks such as choking or perforated intestines. Also, to be useful to our pets, raw fruits and vegetables must not be cooked, and must be totally crushed before they are properly digested.

Vegetables & Fruit
Raw vegetables and fruit play an important role in the health of our pets. Vegetables contain health promoting soluble and insoluble fiber, simple sugars, and only small amounts of starch. More importantly they are full of essential nutrients such as enzymes, anti-oxidants, vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids. Please note that in order for our pets to be able to digest fruits and vegetables, they must be completely crushed beforehand. We suggest using a food processor or juicer.

Organ Meat (aka Offal)
Internal organs such as the kidney, heart, and liver are an essential part of a raw pet food diet, and should be incorporated into your feeding plan. It is recommended that organ meat should be 10% of your dog's diet, and 15% of your cat's diet. Internal organs must be fresh and raw. They are a valuable source of nutrients, including 70% water, protein, essential fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and enzymes that contain anti-aging benefits.

Adding supplements to a raw pet food diet can be a wonderful thing, however you must know which supplements are necessary for your pet. It is important that you do not over-supplement. If you are feeding a varied raw pet food diet, very few supplements will be needed.

For those of you who are new to the raw pet food diet, we suggest reading 'The Barf Diet: Raw Feeding for Dogs & Cats Using Evolutionary Principles' by Dr. Ian Billinghurst.