1 1/2 months into raw - Odus is vomiting & not wanting. Help pls

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!


Barked: Wed Jul 10, '13 11:14am PST 
I'm still a newbie with raw.

I decided to put Holly & Odus (both shih tzu's 7 & 5 yrs) on raw because Holly has been diagnosed with urine/bladder crystals and I don't agree with the diet the vet wants her on. (Royal Canine which I have learned is full of fillers and by-products). A local pet store suggested raw would be ideal.

It started off great. Started with pre-packaged raw chicken, whole meal. Two picky eaters licked their bowls clean. They looked forward to every meal, were actually excited to eat and once again licked their bowls clean.

Two weeks into raw - I tried tripe. They both loved it - but quickly vomited after. Tried the tripe again the next day - more vomiting. No more tripe.

Back on chicken whole food. Switched brands due to cost. Odus gets picky and prefers the first brand. Back to store - get more of first brand - and on suggestion of store - mix the brands and wean him onto new brand. This worked.

Now a week ago - Odus started not wanting to eat. Would turn his nose up and walk away. I would put it back in fridge and re-offer. Then I started to offer him brand #1 again. He would eat it - but promptly proceed to vomit it again. I've noticed he keeps his morning meal down - but vomits every evening.

Now he doesn't even want to eat his morning meal.

Holly continues to enjoy and love her raw. I just hope it's helping for her crystals.

I thought maybe I should change proteins - perhaps he's bored - as refusing food in the past is a way they have shown me they are bored with their food. I purchased some lamb (same brand as the one he liked) yesterday - he reluctantly ate it- and promptly vomited.

I'm also finding they seem to be more hungry at bed time. I'm feeding the required raw amounts for their weight.

Should I switch them (or just Odus) back to kibble? Or home-made? (I use to make home-made soft for them). Can I safely give switch it up (raw one day, kibble another)?

I look forward to your suggestions.

Barked: Wed Jul 10, '13 1:02pm PST 
Here is my personal opinion...
I think people get all up in the hype of WHAT and WHEN they feed their dogs as opposed to HOW and WHY. Dogs are scavengers, they don't NEED to eat twice a day, they don't NEED a complete "balanced" meal each time, they don't HAVE to and SHOULDN'T eat the same thing all the time. I have an extremely picky eater, too. If he turns his nose up to breakfast, well he gets to wait until dinner then. Many dogs only eat once a day and in fact, fasting can be extremely healthy for your dogs.
Go pick up some meat that is on sale at the grocery store because it's getting a little old and feed that, pick up some larger items for them to munch on and try. If they eat something and puke, don't feed it again for a while. Dogs are extremely easy animals to feed, they don't have a hard and set daily nutritional intake, as long as you're trying, they will be fine... Just try and keep in mind the 80-10-10 rule and you'll do great!

Barked: Wed Jul 10, '13 1:07pm PST 
You can literally feed your dog almost anything... Obviously there are somethings you should avoid but variety is the spice of life! Don't really concern yourself with what you are feeding and just worry about feeding them at all lol

CGC Diego

I love my peeps!-
Barked: Wed Jul 10, '13 1:26pm PST 
Firstly I would take him to the vet and make sure that nothing is wrong. That said, I do realize that if your vet recommended him/them to be on Royal Canin that they may freak if you tell him he's eating raw... Not sure what to tell you about that (personally I'd just avoid saying WHAT I'm feeding him and have them do a thorough once over on him).

Assuming all is fine with him physically, I would ask how MUCH you are feeding him? I've never fed commercial raw, but if its anything like kibble they over-sell the amount you need to feed. If you peck around on this forum there are plenty of places to find out ratios of how much he actually should be eating.

It is so easy to over-feed small dogs. My two active 15lb dogs eat 5oz, twice a day. That is with about half meat/bone, half blended raw-defrosted veggies.

If your dogs are not super-active, they will likely need less than that (I'm assuming they're about that same size).

Lastly, you could try splitting his meals. I know some raw feeder only do once a day, but in the interest of keeping his food down, maybe split the quantity into thirds and see if that helps?

I'd try a few things before putting him back on kibble. I know a LOT of dog people that feed raw and have yet to meet anyone who ends up making the permanent switch back to kibble. Assuming nothing is physically wrong with him, just be patient, it will work out! wink

Once Abandoned,- No Pampered
Barked: Wed Jul 10, '13 4:39pm PST 
I will give you my personal experience here. My dogs can eat almost anything. But, I think you should get your dog to the vet to make sure everything is okay.

Bigger is Better
Barked: Sun Jul 14, '13 12:08am PST 
Raw is the best diet you can feed your dog. As far as the urine crystals, I recommend supplementing their diet with Only Natural Pet Cranberry Wellness. Royal Canin is an okay dog food, but I don’t like seeing the brown rice, rice, wheat gluten meal, pea fiber, or dried brewers yeast extract. Raw is the best diet. I feed Mervyn on a prey model raw diet. I don’t recommend commercial raw foods, though. Prey model raw is the best. I always recommend organic, too. Tripe is very good for dogs, too. For the vomiting, I recommend putting them on a supplement called Only Natural Pet GI Support. I wouldn’t be too worried about the vomiting, but I do recommend this supplement. You can try cutting the tripe out, or feeding with Only Natural Pet GI Support. Commercial raw foods contain a lot of things dogs don’t need. I don’t like them. I recommend switching to a prey model raw diet. Try to get organic meats. I really don’t blame your dog for not wanting to eat. Like I said, commercial raw foods contain many species inappropriate ingredients. For example, Nature’s Variety contains apples, which isn’t appropriate for dogs. Dogs are carnivores. I really do think Odus needs Only Natural Pet GI Support. This should help stop the vomiting. Also, as I said before, try feeding a prey model raw diet. Holly should be put on Only Natural Pet Cranberry Wellness for her crystals. Commercial raw just isn’t as good as a real raw diet. But, whatever you choose to feed, Only Natural Pet GI Support should be given. You may want to start feeding at night instead of during the day, too. I would switch to a prey model raw diet, preferably organic. I would not go back to kibble. Home cooked diets are actually worse than most kibbles. It’s nearly impossible to balance them properly. I would stick with raw and give appropriate raw foods and supplements. Commercial raw food contains too many fruits and vegetables – not a food for carnivores!

Barked: Thu Aug 8, '13 1:26pm PST 
My Shih Tzu had similar symptoms. Our vet removed the stone from the bladder and ran further diagnostic tests, including a fasting and post-feeding blood test. These tests confirmed what our vet was suspecting. Our Shih Tzu had a liver shunt and we ended up at UCDavis and Scupper underwent liver shunt surgery. A high protein diet prior to that surgery would NOT have been good for her. She now enjoys a raw diet!

Every situation is different, but I WOULD have your vet run some diagnostic tests just to rule out any serious problems.

I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
Barked: Thu Aug 8, '13 1:56pm PST 
How much are you feeding them and are they losing weight because they aren't eating all you are offering them? The other dogsters may be on to something with overfeeding them. I never ever fed my dogs what the label on the food suggested as I want my dogs to stay lean. Usually they get about 2/3 the suggested amount.
Vance CGC

You kids g'off- my lawn!
Barked: Fri Aug 9, '13 8:46am PST 
To get gross - what does the vomit look like? Are there bone shards in it? Food? Digested food, or like it just went down? Just bile and nothing else? What color? These things can provide clues as to what is going on.

Vomiting from tripe makes sense. Tripe is very fatty and does not have bones in it, so going from kibble to premade raw chicken to tripe would most likely cause vomiting and/or diarrhea. I would not rule out tripe over it, but reintroduce it slowly if you do try it again, rather than as a whole meal.

I would not try alternating kibble and raw for a dog that is already having tummy troubles. It can be done, and most healthy dogs will not have an issue with it, but it is a sharp transition for an upset stomach.

I would go for a bland diet, small meals 2 - 3 times a day, for a few days. Something like cooked sweet potato and boiled ground meat - dogs exclusively on a raw diet will frequently lose their ability to digest grain well, so doing the traditional chicken and rice bland diet can actually cause more problems for a raw-fed dog.

If the vomiting does not stop on a bland diet, there is most likely an underlying medical issue. If it does clear up, you can start looking back to food-related causes.