Feeding

My Journey to Raw Feeding

My Journey To Raw Feeding My road to raw feeding began in the late 1990’s. At that time, i collected rescue dogs, i chose old ones who didn’t have much of a chance of finding a home.  One of the old ones I adopted had epilepsy.  The medication didn’t seem to be particularly effective, and I have never been a fan of mind altering dogs, for humans or dogs. I found a veterinary chiropractor who treated dogs with seizures. We visited, and that began a bi monthly trip for treatments. Amazingly, it really did reduce the seizures.  Sad to say, the little dog died about 2 years later, but not from seizures. While doing my research into alternative therapies for seizures, I read quite a lot about holistic veterinary care.  Remember, this was the 1990’s, so it was not such a popular practice at that time. Nonetheless, it made a lot of sense to me, especially since I had used alternative treatments for myself for years.  I dabbled in supplements, chiropractric, and acupuncture for the dogs, all of which I found to be quite impressive. I noticed that a lot of the holistic veterinarians recommended raw or natural diets.  I poured over books, and settled on my first, Give Your Dog a Bone by Dr. Ian Billinghurst.  I was fascinated by his writing and his explanation for advocating for a raw food diet. Hint: it has to do with commercial pet foods not being broadly distributed in Australia until the mid 1960’s. Later I added the books The Complete Herbal Handbook for the Dog and Cat by Juliet Levy, and Natural Nutrition for Dogs and Cats by Kymythy Schultze.  I recommend all heartily. I decided to try a raw diet.  At that time, you didn’t have the array of pre packaged raw diets, dehydrated raw food, or raw diet mixes. I had to go it from scratch. Following the instructoins, I began my adventure. I have never turned back. At that time, most veterinarians would give you a look of horror if you mentioned raw feeding. This is explained in the book too.  I ignored this, and continued. What i knew was that my dogs had clean sparkly teeth, smaller stools, less odor, and shiny coats. When a started breeding, I saw no reason to change the diet of the in whelp females. We have always done fine with raw fed females.  I will say that the puppies received both puppy food, raw was not introduced until they were at least 8 weeks of age. Today, raw diets are much more popular and most veterinarians I deal with have not raised an eyebrow or asked a question about how I feed my dogs. It is quite simple these days to feed raw. If you don’t want the mess, you can buy prepackaged raw foods in many forms, from refrigerated packages, to frozen packages, to dehydrated meals, to mixes to use with your own meat. It really is not more expensive than feeding a high  quality kibble. These days my outside dogs have a very high quality kibble in their bowls in case they need more food during the day, but each starts their day with a freshly made raw meal.  Any puppies I keep are started on raw at 8 weeks of age.  Most of the puppies I sell are fed a very high quality puppy food, so that they can transition to what I expect their pet parents feed them. I do advocate for raw, if asked. Quite a few of my buyers are like minded, and have reported wonderful health in their raw fed dogs.

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