(Closed) Do you feed your cat/dog raw?

posted 9 years ago in Pets
  • poll: Do you feed your babies a raw diet?

    Yes! Raw all the way!!

    Sometimes/Occasionally. As a treat or a special meal.

    Mixed with their daily wet/dry food.

    No. I don't have enough knowledge but I am interested in learning.

    No. I don't have to time, energy and resources to make this commitment.

    No. I feed kibble and it's fine.

  • Post # 3
    3175 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: May 2012

    Awesome, thanks for sharing!

    We don’t have a dog yet, as we’re waiting until we move out of our apartment into a house. When we get one, I’m 100% planning on feeding him/her raw. Dogs are natural carnivores, and commercial dog food has tons of unnecessary fillers in it. 

    Post # 4
    7286 posts
    Busy Beekeeper
    • Wedding: October 2011

    Yup we feed our German Shepherd dog mostly raw and occasionally supplement with a grain free dry food . It makes him the happiest dog on the planet 😉 I also try to avoid most chicken since chickens are fed grains/corn, which continues the problem.

    Lamb, bison, beef, salmon, tripe, et etc

    Post # 5
    216 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: June 2012

    As a veterinarian, I feel I must respond to your post. My schooling DID include 2 in-depth nutrition classes, so your claim that veterinarians do not receive adequate training in nutrition is unfounded. These classes were UNBIASED by pet food manufacturers and taught by veterinarians BOARD-CERTIFIED in clinical nutrition.

    While it is true that cats are carnivores, dogs are actually omnivores. Our common household pets do not have the same requirements as their outdoor ancestors and comparing the nutritional needs of a domestic companion dog to its ancestral wolf ancestor is not necessarily an appropriate thing to do.

    Different nutrients are available in different quantities and qualities from various ingredients in food. Recent studies in scientific journals have been published suggesting that cats fed raw diets are at risk of becoming deficient in taurine, an essential amino acid required for heart and vision health. Just because these raw diets ARE highly digestible, does not mean nutrients are ABSORBED adequately (i.e. lost in fecal material). It is not yet understood why these raw diets caused a taurine deficiency and I imagine research is underway to further investigate this phenomenon (may be due to bacteria or enzymes present in raw meat breaking down or altering essential amino acids into forms that aren’t able to be absorbed properly).

    A bigger concern, especially for a high percentage of the readers and posters on wedding bee is the PUBLIC SAFETY RISKS of feeding a raw diet. Pregnant women and children, in particular are HIGHLY at risk of contracting food-borne illness such as Salmonella and E. coli O157H7 from animals fed raw diets. NUMEROUS studies have shown that animals consuming raw diets (up to 80% in some studies) shed Salmonella in their fecal material. Studies have examined home cleaning practices and found that it is very difficult to adequately sterilize/clean pet food bowls that have been used to serve raw diets. As a veterinarian who talks to families EVERY DAY of my job, I CANNOT advocate exposing pregnant women, young children or anyone else in the household to Salmonella and E. coli. It truly is a public safety risk…and studies have documented TRANSMISSION of bacteria from animals fed raw-diets to people (they looked down to the molecular level to ID the specific strains found in both the diet and the infected person). There are discussions ALL the time on wedding bee about what foods to avoid while pregnant….this is really no different.

    If anyone wants links to these journal articles, I’m happy to provide them.

    mtrl01, DVM

    Post # 6
    13094 posts
    Honey Beekeeper
    • Wedding: July 2010

    I don’t have the time, energy, or resourses to commit to raw feeding.  I instead feed my dog high quality dog food where meat (not meat meal or corn) is the first ingredient.  It also has no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives.

    Post # 7
    1443 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: May 2011

    I wish we had the money to feed our malamute raw food!  We occasionally do as a treat.  We do buy the highest quality dog food we can get for him, though, which has no corn fillers (he has tummy issues with ANY food containing corn).  I can’t imagine how much it would cost to feed such a large dog only raw food, though.  🙁  Great information, and glad you posted!!!

    Post # 8
    454 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: June 2011

    I voted both “No. I don’t have to time, energy and resources to make this commitment” AND “No. I feed kibble and it’s fine”.  I’m not that sure even if we had the time, energy, and resources to feed raw, we would.  I think the public health issues that a PP brought up are very real concerns.  We’re not bacteriaphobes when it comes to handling our own raw meat, but the bacteria in and around the dog’s dishes and in her poop are certainly something for us to be concerned about.

    Another thing that comes to mind is the effect on public drinking water if more people were to feed raw and bacteria like salmonella and e. coli found in dogs’ feces were running off into our drainage systems and seeping into our groundwater.

    We feed her Blue Buffalo.  We used their Wilderness line (grain-free) when we first adopted her, however she never took to it.  When we could get her to even eat it, usually by adding some other tasty stuff, it never agreed with her tummy.  We tried for  several months and eventually went to Blue’s regular line of foods.  So far so good.

    Post # 11
    13094 posts
    Honey Beekeeper
    • Wedding: July 2010

    View original reply
    @phillygirl629:  We also feed Blue Buffalo to our dog.  She loves it!

    View original reply
    @mrsbruff2b:  My vets (we’ve had multiple due to moving states while owning our dog have also complemented us on how wonderful our dog’s coat and teeth are compared to most dogs they see.  So feeding raw isn’t the only way to get your dog those benefits.  There is a big difference between some of the nicer, high quality dog foods (ex. Blue Buffalo) and, say, Kibbles and Bits.

    Post # 14
    5473 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: August 2012

    I have not met any veterinarians yet who reccommended to me that I switch my dogs to the raw diet.  I do check the ingredients on the high quality dog food I do feed them to make sure that meat is the #1 ingredient and that it has the appropriate breakdown of fats & protein.  I was surprised at how many dog foods list rice or wheat as the first ingredient.  My dogs are happy & healthy on their kibble diet.

    One thing I did hear though, is that if you feed your dog raw food, you must ONLY feed it raw food.  Raw food is digested very quickly so any foodborne bacteria passes without infecting the dog.  Kibble or dry food takes longer to digest- mixing the two can cause your dog to get sick if there is bacteria in the raw food that gets trapped in the stomach too long.  (This is just something I have heard, and I want to clarify that I am not a veterinarian or an animal nutritionist)

    Post # 15
    3768 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: August 2013 - Brookfield Zoo

    This is so interesting!  Very interesting to see it both from an informed consumer and then from a veterinarian’s opinions.  I don’t have a cat or dog but hope to have a dog in the future so thanks for posting this information OP and everyone who contributes.

    Post # 16
    1425 posts
    Bumble bee

    I saw way too many dogs come into the vet clininc with GI problems after being fed strictly RAW diets that I would never succumb any of my pets to it… besides what the cats hunt and eat themselves and my family’s dog’s getting a hold of dead baby turkeys. 

    Unless you’re raising your own livestock, or buying from a local farmer, there’s always a chance of the meat contracting some kind of disease.  The “prey” isn’t processed in any way, shape or form… Just sayin’.

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