My dog doesn't like liver! What should I do?

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!

(Page 1 of 2: Viewing entries 1 to 10)  
Page Links: 1  2  

Member Since
Barked: Mon Feb 4, '13 6:01am PST 
I have a 35-pound mixed breed, named Cali, 1yo. We have owned her for 2 months, and we started her on raw food right away when we got her. (I have little other experience with raw fed pets.) She has been doing great, but she won't eat liver or kidney. Sometimes she will eat calf liver if I cut it up and cook it very slightly in lard. Sometimes I "force feed" the liver to her, with treats. I really need the feeding to be easier on me. Aren't dogs supposed to *like* liver? Do all dogs have to eat liver to be healthy? What should I do?

Also, I'd like her to eat pork liver, or kidneys, which don't even taste as good as calf liver. I like calf liver myself and don't want to give it to the dog!

By the way, I'm new to the forum, and I tried to search for "liver" but I couldn't find anything specific to my question. If there's a better way to find answers, besides asking on a new thread, please say so!

Thanks for your help.

the chi-weenie
Barked: Mon Feb 4, '13 7:25am PST 
yeah that's actually really common.
my dog does not a fan of the organs either.

first thing you should try it freezing it in bite sized pieces.
If she still won't eat it, there are other things like Parmesan cheese, yogurt, or anything else she likes to put on it.. lightly cooking it... which I agree is all a pain and it's easier if they just eat it.

I have been working on it with my dog and found out the best way for us is to either offer it in bite sized frozen pieces, or now since she gets a 1 oz cube of all the organs mixed.. it's too big for her to swallow whole, so I just thaw it overnight and offer it before her other meat and she eats it. mostly because she's hungry.

Barked: Mon Feb 4, '13 8:20am PST 
Thanks for your ideas. (I posted this initially.) So what do wild dogs do -- die from not eating liver, because they don't like it?? It doesn't seem right for me to have to force the organs on my dog. What about skipping the liver and giving her eggs instead? She loves eggs, and don't they have the necessary vitamins?

Savannah Blue Belle

A Heart of Gold!
Barked: Mon Feb 4, '13 8:53am PST 
I would venture that Wild Dogs eat whatever they are able to get hold of since they don't have a human putting a plate of balanced food in front of them. I don't think they would be particular enough to "not like" something.

Also, for the most part, their life spans are shorter...so domestication gives the human partner an opportunity to see his dog gets a balanced diet.

Try just singeing the liver bits. That little bit of cooking does the trick for me, since two out of my four choose not to eat it raw. At least not willingly.

Where can I run- today?
Barked: Mon Feb 4, '13 9:01am PST 
Eggs are definitely not a replacement for liver. You can compare their nutritional makeup:

Raw Egg

Raw Beef Liver

Sometimes it's a texture thing. When you cook it you are also adding some extra odor to it which is probably enticing, as well as changing the texture a bit. You might try feeding it frozen. Some people have success pureeing it and pouring it on top of something else.

Wolves are eating for survival and will eat anything available to them, including liver -- dogs are domesticated animals with a roof over their head, scheduled/expected meals...if your dog was hungry enough they would eat the liver. My dog doesn't like pork liver and generally will not eat it -- but she eats other types of liver so I don't push it and just don't offer pork liver to her anymore (my other dog eats it happily). If pork liver was all that was ever available to my dog to eat, of course she would hunker down after a few days and eat it, because she is not going to starve herself. Does that make sense? I guess in other words -- dogs have the option to turn things down because their next meal is not uncertain like a wolf's is...
Sita CGC- SD(mostly- retired)

When we seeing- the ponies?!
Barked: Mon Feb 4, '13 9:58am PST 
Sita isn't fond of raw liver either. For a while I was putting liver & other organs in the blender, then freezing them in a ice cube tray. I thawed them out & mixed it in with the breakfast. Now I use dehydrated liver as training treats & she LOVES those. The vet said the dehydrated liver is ok to give instead of the raw.
Jackson Tan

Lad about town
Barked: Mon Feb 4, '13 7:13pm PST 
I also use dehydrated liver, it works a treat.

I'm looking for dehydrated kidneys too but these seem harder to find .....
Sita CGC- SD(mostly- retired)

When we seeing- the ponies?!
Barked: Mon Feb 4, '13 8:13pm PST 
I dehydrate my own liver. I guess I could do kidneys too, just cut the fat off. If you have a dehydrator, put the liver or kidney in the oven on 200 degrees for two hours, then put in the dehydrator. I usually go overnight, but if the liver is a bit thick, I will leave it in all day. I like it really crispy as it's less messy when training. If you don't have a dehydrator, just leave in the oven until it's cooked like you like it smile

Edited by author Mon Feb 4, '13 8:14pm PST


I want to play!
Barked: Mon Feb 4, '13 10:59pm PST 
Mixing the liver, kidney in ground meat might help.. Caned fish like sardines, salmon or mackerel is another option.

Trying the liver in tiny frozen pieces might help.

Saya used to not like beef kidneys. If you saw her today eating up the beef kidney you'd think I was a liar.

She would bite the kidney and spit it out she had a look that told me she was like yuck! or something.

She would then try to bury the kidney with her feeding towel or walk away from it.

She loved liver luckily.

I started offering kidney in tiny pieces before each meal I'd offer the tiny piece of food if she refused I then put her meal away and tried again another time if she refused I fed her meal and tried again next day.

Eventually she would eat tiny bit of the piece and then eat it more willingly.

I kept giving the tiny frozen pieces of kidney and eventually increased the size of the frozen kidneys and eventually she ate it on her weeks worth of kidney with no fuss.

Now she eats kidneys thawed too.

Saya used to refuse beef heart and tongue. I think it was a texture thing with those items. As tongue has a different feel and very chewy..

Heart is just squishy..

I kept offering small pieces and eventually she liked them and ate the small pieces no problem.

Using dehydrated, cooked, hiding in ground meat or whatever is good options maybe over time the dog will learn to like it.

Dehydrator is a nice investment for making natural treats..

I dehydrated chicken hearts in my oven worked pretty good actually.

I hope to get a dehydrator someday and do hearts, liver, and maybe try other various things. Saya and Bella likes sweet potatoes.

Semper Vorax
Barked: Mon Feb 4, '13 11:09pm PST 
Mine won't eat liver unless it's freeze dried.
  (Page 1 of 2: Viewing entries 1 to 10)  
Page Links: 1  2