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  1. #1
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    Default homemade raw recipes?

    We are considering making homemade food for our cavaliers. Does anyone have any recipes that are properly balanced? Do you suggest feeding raw homemade or cooked homemade? I just started them on instinct raw bites lamb and they love it.

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    I don't feed raw, but I know many here do and can offer personal experience. Here is a good place to start:

    http://www.cavalierhealth.org/diets....Prepared_Diets
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    My two cents(we will have many different views! ): Studies have shown that a lot of homemade raw -- and even commercial raw -- diets are nutritionally unbalanced, unfortunately. You really must be very discerning in the source for raw diets as there are a lot of "experts" on discussion sites, email lists and even in some revered books who actually do not get the right balance or who give really poor advice .

    This matters less if giving occasional raw as people do not eat a nutritionally balanced diet every day but we tend to eat a lot more broadly than what we feed our cats and dogs. I tend to give some commercially prepared foods (raw and some kibble) and some homemade and homeooked, scraps etc. I do feel a well balanced raw diet is probably the most ideal but may not always be practical for some folks. A diet of only kibble I think is the worst possible, regardless of the quality of the kibble. At the end of the day I feel it is a highly processed food that has to be refortified with nutrients lost from the ingredients in the process of making a kibble -- no matter how deluxe or gourmet or close to "what wolves eat"!

    Canine nutritionist Monica Segal has books on recipes as well as a booklet on raw and cooked diets for cavaliers specifically, from her website; that's a good place to start.

    www.monicasegal.com

    I thought this mattered less before reading a recent study on this subject, and speaking to a vet specialist I know well and trust, who has treated both cats and dogs for nutritional deficiencies from homemade diets. The problem tends to be worse with cats as they have more precise nutritional needs and eat a narrower range of foods. Monica Segal (who has a discussion group you can join) is also quite sobering on how easy it is to improperly supplement dogs -- over-adding one thing (a given vitamin say) can block absorption of a a needed nutrient, for example.
    Karlin
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    Okay, that makes sense. I told my boyfriend that it is really hard to properly balance a homemade diet, but he wants to try. What specifically do you guys feed? If kibble is so bad, which i can understand because it is so highly processed, what should be the main source of nutrients for them? I can supplement the raw or dry with vegetables. What else should i do? is there a certain kibble you personally find to be less worse than the rest? I just want to give my dogs the best possible diet for their long term health, and there are so many controversies right now about it that i am having a hard time deciding what to do. Thanks!

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    I have wanted to go raw for a couple years now but I afraid I won't be able to give them everything they need so I opt to stay on dry food. But a few times a year I think about it again. I have feed my picky eater satin balls a few times during the year and I feed all the dogs raw egg yolks once a week. I also give them raw meat scrapes when I cook dinner. I think for me getting the mix right is what stops me from going RAW.
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    I would LOVE to feed a homemade raw diet however, I simply do not know enough to be able to make the jump. I come across recipes and it sounds pretty balanced based on what I have learned so far but in reality its missing something I think is important. Again, I thought I have no problem learning everything I should about being a wonderful doggie Mommy this nutrition stuff is just over my head. I have came up with a feed menu that I believe is kind of the next best thing. I feed Fletcher Wellness Core kibble and Merrick wet food. Both are grain free. Again you will have 100 opinions about kibble vs wet, brands and what is "best" I also do not buy any commercial treats. I feed raw fruits and veggies only. I think the kibble is good for him because it is a bulk of his meals, the wet food adds favor and some extra water, and the fresh veggies and fruits do not add empty calories, its a good healthy treat. Some of his favs are baby carrots, green beans (frozen), melons, blueberries, strawberries. As extra special treats I freeze blocks of ice with berries, he loved ice!

    I feel with the mix of what I choose to feed Fletcher I know he is getting a more balanced diet that I could make on my own. He eats with NO problems and his coat is nice.
    Melissa
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    We've been feeding raw meat and vegetable meals to our dogs and cats for several years, and the recipes have changed over time. One thing that is consistent for us, however, has been that we consult with our (fortunately) knowledgeable veterinarians on approving and tweaking the recipes we have found from books on the subject.

    Right now, we have two primary raw diets for our dogs, which we alternate. They consist of about 60% protein, with the meats being either primarily beef (right now, ground beef, but cubed chunks in the past) or ground turkey, combined with a small amount of organ meats, like calves liver, chicken gizzards, and beef or chicken hearts. The vegetables -- 30% to 40% -- vary with the two recipes. They are ground and mixed with the meat. We may add up to 10% grain to these mixtures. We prepare about a month's worth of meals at a time and freeze each day's meals in separate freezer bags.

    We add supplements just before serving the meals, so that we can give each dog the supplements which it needs. They include bone meal for calcium for all of the dogs in every meal, which is essential to balance phosphorus in the meat, and enzymes, and others to help the cavaliers compensate for their health (and future health) issues, particularly the heart. Our holistic vet determines which supplements to add for which dogs, but they include many of the ones listed here: http://www.cavalierhealth.org/diets....hy_Supplements Every one of our dogs gets a dose of Standard Process Canine Cardiac Support with every meal.

    We also add an egg to one meal per week, and a sardine to one meal per week.
    Last edited by RodRussell; 3rd October 2013 at 07:45 PM.
    Rod Russell

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    Quote Originally Posted by RodRussell View Post

    We add supplements just before serving the meals, so that we can give each dog the supplements which it needs. They include bone meal for calcium for all of the dogs in every meal, which is essential to balance potassium in the meat,
    Added calcium is needed in home prepared diets (both raw and cooked) in order to balance with PHOSPHORUS, not potassium. If inadequate calcium is in the diet, the body will actually leach calcium from the bones which can have serious consequences. The ratio of calcium to phosphorus in a dog's diet is really important.

    The reason that I know about this is because of preparing home cooked diets for dogs in kidney failure. A diet for a "normal" dog is very different from a diet for a dog with kidney disease. (I have a 16 year old who has had kidney disease for over 3 years. She is doing very well, and a home prepared diet is a key factor. Limiting phosphorus and balancing calcium/phosphorus are key components of a kidney diet. I use calcium carbonate rather than bone meal because bone meal contains phosphorus and calcium carbonate is a pure form of calcium.)

    Pat
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pat View Post
    Added calcium is needed in home prepared diets (both raw and cooked) in order to balance with PHOSPHORUS, not potassium. If inadequate calcium is in the diet, the body will actually leach calcium from the bones which can have serious consequences. The ratio of calcium to phosphorus in a dog's diet is really important. ...
    Correct, I got my "p"s mixed up. I will correct that entry.
    Rod Russell

  10. #10
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    sounds like it would be best to see a veterinarian who is knowledgable in this before venturing to do it on my own. I have added green beans and a little plain nonfat yogurt to their food, sometimes a teaspoon of organic pumpkin but nothing other than that. Do you guys do any of these things? How much of the green beans do you give a day?

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