Feeding raw: 7 questions we ask before you change your dog’s diet
As many dog owners make changes to their own diets — moving towards a diet of whole foods they quality-control by making meals themselves — they may want to do the same for their pets. Although dogs have been domesticated since prehistoric days, they are still carnivorous animals, who in the wild would get his or her whole nutrition from eating other animals whole (meat, organs, and bones).
If you come into a Global Pet Foods New Brunswick store (like ours in Saint John), and tell one of our staff that you are considering switching your dog’s diet over to raw, but need more information, you’ll find we will consistently ask these questions:
1. Why are you considering a raw foods diet?
You may want your dog to feed as close to wild as possible, your dog may have health issues that you haven’t been able resolve, or you may simply want the best for your dog’s health. Most Global Pet Foods staff are very much pro raw; however, we want not only what’s best for your dog, but we are looking to find what’s best for you.
2. Have you ever fed your dog raw food before?
What was your experience like? What were you feeding your dog? How did your dog react to raw?
3. What do you feed your dog now?
The type of food you are feeding your dog now could have an impact on how well the transition from processed kibble to raw goes. If you are using a lower quality kibble from the grocery store, we might recommend first going to a high quality kibble so the change won’t be so dramatic. We certainly wouldn’t want your dog to be in discomfort during the changeover. (In an upcoming post, we will talk about how to transition your dog from dry kibble to raw food.)
4. Are there young children in your household?
While some of the raw foods that we sell at Global Pet Foods have been pressure processed to remove bacteria, you will need to consider keeping young children away from areas where your dog comes in contact with raw food, for their safety.
6. What is your meal preparation routine?
With this question we are looking to discover whether you would first of all be bothered by handling raw meat products like patties, chicken necks and backs, raw bones, but also what level of convenience you may be looking for. (We’ll be covering the different types of raw products available in a future blog.)
7. Is cost a major consideration?
With all the different types of foods, convenience is a factor when it comes to our recommendations as to what type of raw food products you could feed your dog. The more processed (but still maintaining nutritional quality) and convenient the raw food is, the more expensive it is. And there are other options for feeding different levels and combinations of raw with other types of foods. (Another topic for another blog.)
The raw revolution is still in its infancy in New Brunswick, but more and more dog owners are finding the idea intriguing and the benefits great, every day. If you have questions, stop by the store. You will find most of us are big raw food enthusiasts who would be delighted to welcome another into the fold. We like to think of it as improving dog nutrition one adored pooch at a time!