A few people I know are feeding their dogs nothing but raw food -- frozen chicken and turkey necks, kidney, heart, gizzard, tripe, beef bones, pigs feet, etc., supplemented with raw fruit and vegetables, and fish oil. This requires a freezer, which I have. I read up on the BARF diet and decided against it. Way too expensive! So today I made my first serious trek into a raw food world of my own making.
I visited Scallan's Choice Meats on Airline highway, which sells wholesale and in bulk, including beef bones you can't buy in the supermarket any more. It was an interesting place. They bring you out a huge bone, saw it into pieces of any size you choose, and sell it for very .49 cents/lb.
For $14.98, I got a 10# bag of huge fresh turkey necks @ .89 cents/lb, cut into about 4" long pieces, 4 pigs feet cut in half lenthwise (just to try out), and 5# of beef bones (8 chunks in assorted sizes). I brought them home, laid them out on a cookie sheets to freeze, and tomorrow I'll bag them up and start passing them out for supper a few times a week. I fear my dogs will have to eat in separate rooms not to fight over the bones. They get served frozen to slow down the dog from gobbling the meat, and they all chew at different rates. They have to chew and chew and chew, and they don't seem to mind the cold.
I'll still feed the kibble, table scraps, pan drippings, leftover salad, potato skins, rice, grits, apple cores, cabbage stems and other things my dogs love. And I'll watch their weight, as usual. I'm told at first they might get diarrhea if too much raw meat is introduced too quickly, so I'm easing into it. Eventually, the formula is 2-3% of their body weight per day in raw meat.
Lucky @ 48# = 1.5 lbs
FoohFooh @ 40# = 1.2 lbs
Willow @ 8# = .25 lbs
Maxie @ 7# = .21 lbs
I'll probably round that out to 1.5 lbs, 1 lb., and .25 lbs.
The raw diet is supposed to make their coats shiny and beautiful, keep their teeth clean and white, their joints in peak condition, and muscles solid and supple. We'll see how it goes.
Upwards and onward!