GO!

Need Advice

This is a dedicated place for all of your questions and answers about Raw Diets. There are also some really cool groups like "Raw Fed" on the topic you can join. This forum is for people who already know they like the raw diet or sincerely want to learn more. Please remember that you are receiving advice from peers and not professionals. If you have specific health-related questions about your dog's diet, please contact your vet!

  
Lucy

Eat, Sleep and- Play all day!
 
 
Barked: Wed Oct 3, '07 8:23am PST 
Lucy has been on Natures Variety medaillons for about a month. What I noticed while she was on raw was:
1. she was always hungry, so I bumped up her feedings,
2. Her energy level decreased
3. and then after having good stools for about a month, they went loose again (the reason we started raw was to try to have more regular stools).
I tried the natures variety dry.. and she wont touch it. But her energy level does appear better.
I feel bad giving up on raw since it is suppose to be so good for the dog. But is there a time when
raw just doesnt work?
[notify]
Gio

CD RE (CKC)- RXMCL (CARO) FM- CGN SJATD
 
 
Barked: Wed Oct 3, '07 8:41am PST 
Hey Lucy!

There is a big difference between feeding raw as NV medallions and feeding raw as prepared at home. NV medallions are a great option for some pups, but the tricky thing with raw is that it requires some tweaking to adjust it to the individual dog. Some dogs need more bone, less bone, fatter meats, leaner meats, no chicken, or mostly chicken, etc. NV medallions can be compared to any other commercial diet in that they are formulated for the "average dog" ... they will work for the majority, but not every dog is the majority.

Before giving up on raw completely, I would suggest to try doing the raw formulating at home with "frankenprey". It's generally cheaper, and not too tricky to figure out. That way, you can adjust the diet to fit what works best for Lucy. Stools too runny? Add some bone. Other causes of runny poos could be too much organ at one time, or too fatty of a meat source. So you can fiddle and tweak and find out what works.

HERE is a link to a thread on Dogster that was put together to help people get started. There are some good resources there on how to create a balanced diet and how to feed "real food" to your pup!

Hope that helps!
[notify]
Meridian

Proud to be a- kitchen wolf!!!
 
 
Barked: Wed Oct 3, '07 12:05pm PST 
What Gio said!

A couple more questions:

What made you think she was hungry all the time?
What was she eating before raw?
Did anything change around the time the loose stools started?
Were you feeding a variety of flavors, or did you stick mostly to one?
Are you currently feeding the raw or the dry?
[notify]

Lucy

Eat, Sleep and- Play all day!
 
 
Barked: Wed Oct 3, '07 1:52pm PST 
Thanks for your responses.
To answer your questions Meridian
I thought she was always hungry because she started begging more when I was eating, she also picked up everything she saw on our walks and ate it, including grass.
Before Raw she was eating Buffalo Blue and just started to not eat it, so I thought it was a good time to change. When we did raw, we did a variety of Lamb medallions and venison.
Currently I put out the dry, she wont touch it, so this morning, i gave her a few raw.
[notify]
Gio

CD RE (CKC)- RXMCL (CARO) FM- CGN SJATD
 
 
Barked: Wed Oct 3, '07 2:01pm PST 
Raw digests much faster than kibble, so there may be a period of adjustment where the dog gets used to the concept of not having kibble floating around in her stomach for as long. Really, it's just a learned reaction and she isn't actually starving all the time.

Maybe you mentioned already, but how long was she on the raw before the soft poos started? Where they just soft, yet controlled ... or run to the door splarts? I noticed with Gio that he had a stint about a month after he started raw where he had diarrhea for about a week. At the time, it was explained to me as a detoxing phase ... raw has been in the system long enough that the body begins to rid itself of the garbage that built up with kibble. For some dogs, this detox happens right away, other take a few weeks to get to that point. If the poops were just soft, yet routine and controlled, it could be that she just needed more bone.

Additionally, switching from kibble to raw to kibble and back again can really throw her system off and result in some less-than-pleasant poo situations. Give the diet a good length of time, 1-2 months, to settle before introducing something new.
[notify]
Meridian

Proud to be a- kitchen wolf!!!
 
 
Barked: Wed Oct 3, '07 2:23pm PST 
When you pull all the grains from a dog's diet it can have the effect of them thinking they're starving, but they're not. They're craving the sugars the grains provided. They'll get used to being satisfied by their new healthy diet -- and probably sooner than later if you don't give in and indulge the begging for sugar with carb-heavy food or treats. Begging is a poor indicator of needing more food. The energy thing is a much better indicator, and weight plays in too. Again, though, this may be an adjustment to the grain-free nature of the diet.

Like Gio said, though a month is a start, giving up on the raw completely because you've identified a problem that may or may not be related to raw, but possibly the Nature's Variety ingredients and ratios (or not even food at all) might be premature. If you've been feeding kibble intermittently since the loose stools started I'd stop and give the raw a chance. You might also have to work on tweaking the diet if you want to rely on the NV medallions, too. We can help with ideas!
[notify]
Lucy

Eat, Sleep and- Play all day!
 
 
Barked: Fri Oct 5, '07 6:33am PST 
Thanks everyone, I guess I justed need some more encouragement. (I thought I was a patient person, but I guess not!). We did start her back on the mediallons because she just seemed to love them so much and despite the loose stools, they still are not as bad as they were about 6 months ago when she was on kibble. And it was about a month after starting that she had the loose but controlled stools, so maybe it is the detox period. I will keep you all posted. Thanks again!smile
[notify]