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Raw for malnourished foster

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!

  
Bella &- Cougar

1193109
 
 
Barked: Sat Nov 3, '12 6:47am PST 
I have taken in a foster who has been severely abused and starved. He is very, very malnourished and extremely skinny. He has been with the vet for three weeks, so I can't imagine what he looked like at first.

Anyway, both of my dogs are raw fed and I want to do the same for him. How do I do this with him? Is just chicken ok for awhile, knowing it won't provide all of the nutritional requirements? Should I cut it up at first? Any and all advice is sincerely appreciated!
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Cookie

the chi-weenie
 
 
Barked: Sat Nov 3, '12 9:06am PST 
whatever you do, start slow, we don't want to make him feel sicker than he already is.

Maybe buy some whole plain yogurt to give to him with his raw for a while, to help with digestion and also as an extra source of fat.

You could technically start with any protein as long as you started small.
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Duke

I'm king of the- world!
 
 
Barked: Sat Nov 3, '12 10:56am PST 
I would start out at square 1 like starting any other dog on raw. Just do it slowly and don't introduce too much, too soon.

While not the exact same situation, I transitioned a very emaciated Duke back to raw last year after a serious illness. He stopped eating for weeks, had a GI tube placed, and lost about 20 pounds.

When he finally started showing interest in food again, I introduced it oh-so-slowly. We started with some cooked rice and boiled hamburger (Duke is allergic to chicken). Then I gradually added back in some raw chunks here and there. Over time, his appetite cam back and he began to gain weight.

I kept a detailed food diary of everything he ate, how much, and how it came out the other end. It helped a lot in knowing what worked and what didn't. Just don't rush it. I made that mistake and Duke ended up with bad diarrhea. I also kept fat content low at first and gradually increased it over time.

Definitely add a good probiotic. I would be cautious with dairy as it isn't always tolerated so well. This is a fantastic probiotic that also includes herbs to aid digestion and soothe the GI tract:

http://www.amazon.com/Nutrigest-Pets-Powder-Grams-Vitamins/dp/B0 05ODCLZA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1351965156&sr=8-1&keywords=nutrigest

(Sorry, I don't know how to do clickable links.)

It's a little pricey but did wonders for Duke's digestion and tummy issues. I would also add in a digestive enzyme. Mercola makes a great one.

Hugs to you for saving this lucky guy--best of luck!
cloud 9
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Bella &- Cougar

1193109
 
 
Barked: Sat Nov 3, '12 1:16pm PST 
So far today, I've given him cut-up boneless chicken, but no rice. He devoured it, of course. I've spread out the daily food amount into several servings throughout the day. I'm thinking I might give a little rice in a bit, just to help avoid stomach upset. Maybe continue that for a few days? I'll stick with chicken for awhile. He is extremely scared of people, but not aggressive at all and I literally have to drag him out of the kennel to go outside. frown But, he hasn't even been here 24 hours yet, so we can only go up from here. Do you think it would be ok to give him a bone-in thigh tomorrow or stick with boneless? At this point, I guess it will be all trial and error... With hopefully as little error as possible! Thanks for the helpful advice!
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Cookie

the chi-weenie
 
 
Barked: Sat Nov 3, '12 3:32pm PST 
if he ate the raw chicken and everything went alright in his tummy and out the other end, then you should be fine to try a bone-in now to see how that works out.

Also, it is my understanding that the right kind of yogurt will have live cultures in it, which are what eat the lactose.. so it's usually not a problem for dogs.
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Bella &- Cougar

1193109
 
 
Barked: Sat Nov 3, '12 3:57pm PST 
I use probiotics for one of my dogs on a regular basis, so I just added that to it. Gave the rice and last bit of chicken just a little while ago, so we'll see how it comes out!
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Saya

I want to play!
 
 
Barked: Sat Nov 3, '12 7:51pm PST 
Saya loves plain greek yogurt, but I think a probiotic supplement be more better as the stuff in yogurt might not be enough and some dogs have issues with dairy some are fine with it..

Ark naturals has one called gentle digest I seen other brands somewhere..

http://www.arknaturals.com/p/111/gentle-digest-probio tic-capsule

I'd start slow and don't feed too much depending how skinny the dog is you don't want to pack it on too quickly might overwhelm the dog's system.

Good luck with it.
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Bella &- Cougar

1193109
 
 
Barked: Sat Nov 3, '12 10:10pm PST 
He should be about 55 lbs. if he were healthy. So, I fed 1.62 lbs today, which is 3%. Is that too much too quickly? Or should I do less and work up to that?
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Duke

I'm king of the- world!
 
 
Barked: Mon Nov 5, '12 6:17pm PST 
Agree with Saya...slow and steady.

The probiotics you're adding sound perfect.

I bet your dog's poop will let you know how things are going. As long as it's good (firm), stay where you're at. If it gets loose or urgent, ease back on quantity. I would keep excess fat trimmed off for now.

I don't think I'd go much beyond 3%. My experience with Duke when I tried to pack on too much weight, too soon was that it just gave him an upset tummy and set him back.

You're still under vet supervision? Or was he cleared for "normal eating"?

Once he is doing OK for a couple weeks on chicken, you may want to begin trying the full transition to other proteins and eventually organ. But I'd keep doing it at a snail's pace.

Keep us posted on progress!
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Bella &- Cougar

1193109
 
 
Barked: Tue Nov 6, '12 9:32pm PST 
I'm not sure if I'm concerned yet... He hasn't pooped in two days. Not that I know of, anyway. I have left the back door open during the past two days while I was gone during the day, but I check the yard multiple times per day and haven't seen any. Should I be worried? He is going to the vet for the next three days for a femoral head ostectomy. They will feed him the raw I send, but I won't know about his poop....

Otherwise, he is chowing down and loving it! He is very, very afraid of people, but after he finished eating this morning, he walked into the kitchen looking for more. This is a major step because so far, he wouldn't come near me! He is definitely food motivated.

Thank you all for your guidance!
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