Eat Well Pet
Meet Moxie my adorable, energetic and loving first child. When my husband and I first thought about getting a dog we seriously looked at it like we were having a baby. I, being the old soul and nester that I am, looked at the health side of things. Vaccines, shampoo, treats, bedding and of course food were on my mind. I did my research, because it is in my nature and decided that I was going to raise this pooch just like I would a baby. I put into practice organic living with the intention of offering this little creature the best life she could possible have. There are many topics I can discuss and maybe in the future I will start to blog about it, but for now I would like to offer some insight into how to feed your pet the foods they were designed to eat. It is the Eat Well Program for Dogs.
Ancestrally speaking all dogs came from wolves. For the most part wolves are carnivores. They hunt big game such as buffalo, elk and deer, but also foxes, rabbits, mice, rodents, fowl and their eggs and even insects. Wolves will also supplement their diet with berries, plants, nightshades, apples, pears and even melons if needed. I once heard that animals like wolves will attack their prey and the head honchos of the pack will gorge on the organs, brain and fatty pieces of the animal leaving behind the lean pieces of meat for the scavengers of the pack. That tells me a lot about these creatures. They survive and thrive living on a high fat, moderate protein, very low carb diet, just like us. For sure they never sat down and ate oatmeal or had a block of cheese, which is what you find in most kibble.
So began Moxie's food journey. It was a hit or miss process for awhile. Finding her food sweet spot was all based off her ability to have normal bowel movements with normal frequency. Over the process I learned that beef and chicken are no good and that game meat and lamb are her favorite. She doesn't do well with eggs, but loves tomatoes and pea pods. Just like a kid it took some time and patience to figure her out.
*Please note that not all dogs do well on a raw diet or even a protein rich diet. The more bred your dogs lineage is the more likely raw food will not settle well. Please seek out the help of a holistic veterinarian to find the diet that will work best for your pooch. The following program is not intended to treat, diagnose or cure any pet.
Eat Well Program for Dogs
Intention: To feed your dog nutrient dense, whole foods so that they may live their best life possible
You are going to want your dogs diet to be about 80-90% protein and fat, meat, organs and bones and 10-20% carbohydrates from fruits and vegetables. Creating a varied diet is important. Since dogs in the wild did not eat bison, heart and blueberries every day, neither should your dog. By adding variety to your dogs diet you will give them a better array of vitamins and minerals and discourage food intolerances. Also I will mention raw is best, but if your dog does not do well on raw, just cook it. Moxie follows the same principals that my husband, Andrew, and I do, grass-finished, organic and local whenever possible. If your pooch currently eats kibble and you are looking at switching to a raw diet, take your time and start with just a little raw food mixed with kibble and add more raw food over several days or weeks until they are eating a completely raw diet.
Protein is necessary for the formation of healthy cells, muscles, tendons, organs and every tissue of their body.
Fat provides your dog with fuel, essential vitamins and fatty acids, which is necessary for a healthy coat, hormone and reproductive system and for normal wound healing.
Carbohydrates are limited to plants, berries and some safe starches such as sweet potatoes and butternut squash. Carbohydrates do not provide a structural component to the body and some could argue that they are not necessary to a dogs diet. I find that Moxie does well with a little bit of green and antioxidant rich fruits and since wolves of the wild did eat them occasionally I don't think a little hurts.
Meats - Go for the fatty game meats
* Rabbit (previously frozen only)
* Poultry (least desired choice)
Organ Meats (no pork)
* Heart and Liver are indispensable and a vital part of your dogs diet
* Gizzards found in a whole chicken or turkey are a great addition
* Vegetables - spinach, peas, zucchini, tomatoes, green beans....
* Safe Starches - pumpkin, sweet potato, butternut squash
* Fruit / Enzymes / Antioxidants - berries, apple, pineapple, avocado
* Coconut Oil
* Pasture-raised eggs
* Bones with flesh attached, joints and lots of marrow will not only occupy your dogs time it will help with dental hygiene and provide additional nutrients.
* If you have a dehydrator you can dehydrate pieces of meat for jerky or berries or sweet potato strips
* Store bought jerky treats, no added grains, only vegetables, protein and/or fruit
There are feeding ratios for each stage of life and weight. To keep it simple I am providing the most common weights for an active adult dog.
20 Lb dog 1 3/4 c - 2 cups of raw food per day
30 Lb dog 2 1/3 - 2 3/4 cups of raw food per day
40 Lb dog 3 - 3 1/2 cups of raw food per day
+ Do not feed your dog onions, macadamia nuts, raisins or grapes, chocolate and use cruciferous vegetables in limited quantities.
If you don't have time or don't want to make your dogs food there are many companies that make raw dog food, decent kibble or freeze dried foods. Here are a few: Redbud's Raw (it's local) , Nature's Logic, The Honest Kitchen, Pepperdogz, Primal Pet Foods.
You can often add a fish oil or cod liver oil, probiotic, kelp or a multi for pets. I add a probiotic several times a week and when things are off I use homeopathics. Moxie really responds well to homeopathics when she has an upset tummy, diarrhea or anxiety. I like flower essence for anxiety as well, especially in the summer with the fireworks.
*Please note, I am not a pet nutritionist. Each dog has its own unique eating style and preference. I encourage you to seek out a holistic Veterinarian to find the diet right for your pooch.*
I wanted to let you know that Alex and I picked up our baby on May 12th. We have had him for a little over two weeks now, he is eating a raw diet and we all love it! His coat is so shiny, he has so much energy and he loves breakfast, lunch and dinner time!
I wanted to be sure to send you photos since you helped us feel comfortable with the raw diet! Meet Hashtag!
Thanks again for all your help!!