Tummy Issues with Raw Diet

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: Thu Oct 3, '13 7:50am PST 
Hi Guys-

Need some help here. We recently (4 months ago) switched Stout to a raw diet. At first we were buying pre-ground chicken backs with organ meat from a local supplier which he seemed to be doing fine on. No vomitting, some diarrhea, but we chalked that up to the initial switch of food from kibble to raw. This supplier had some issues with inventory, so we started buying chicken necks from a wholesaler here and grinding them down ourselves. I add in about 10% organ meat to make sure Stout gets some of that. He was ok with this for a few weeks, but lately he has started to exhibit what we believe to be acid reflux symptoms. He does this thing where he'll kind of burp and then lick his chops for a few minutes like he just took a drink of water. He occasionally actually vomits from this, but its not a retching, heaving vomit like he sometimes does. It's more of a burp/vomit. We started to give him Pepcid that we had from an Rx prior when he was working through some sour stomach issues (mostly caused by too much time between meals).

Stout is 15 months old, and about 40lbs. He's a touch underweight, but we're feeding him more to help him gain another few lbs. My question is, what could be causing these acid reflux (if that is in fact what he's experiencing) issues? It's very frustrating that we can't nail down the cause. The pepcid seems to help, although it doesn't completely cure his burp/licking his lips thing. Should we seek alternative raw meat? Is he getting too much bone?

Any help would be greatly appreciated- we need to get our baby back on track!


I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
Barked: Thu Oct 3, '13 9:39am PST 
If all he is getting is chicken necks with some organ then the diet isn't well designed. Far more calcium and phosphorus than he needs and missing a number of essential nutrients. I don't know if a poor diet can cause acid reflux or not, perhaps. Anyway read through this excellent site for how to make up a well balanced raw diet.

Fo r now source some boneless red meats like lamb, beef and pork. Start by substituting an ounce of red meat for an ounce of the grind and increase as his gut allows. Look to switch to a diet of 1/4 of your grind to 3/4 red meats, eggs and fish. You will need to add more organ meats to the grind as well to keep it at 10% of the total diet. Half the organ needs to be liver and half other organs such as kidney, spleen, eye, brain, sweetbreads. Lung, heart, tripe are great to feed as muscle meats but don't count as organs.

Good luck. Acid reflux is annoying and cannot be good for the dog. Max was a major bile vomiter when he was eating kibble but very rarely has an episode these days.

I blamed his problem on empty tummy. Kibble is low fat and high carbohydrate which doesn't sate the appetite like fat. If you are skinning all the necks before grinding perhaps experiment with giving him a little of that skin to see if it changes things.

Tiny boy, but he- has a huge- heart!
Barked: Mon Oct 7, '13 9:36am PST 
he is eating chicken necks and organs? That's it? That is not a balanced raw diet. In any way, shape, or form. Do some reading on prey model diet and work up to a ratio of mostly red meat in the 80% meat, 10% organ, 10% bone range.

Member Since
Barked: Sun Nov 10, '13 4:36am PST 
Sad to hear that your having issues when switching over to a Raw Food Diet. I hope that you wont give up though, since there's a lot of great benefits once you overcome the first obstacles. It seems like you're not giving your dog a nutritionally balanced diet need some advise and learn the fundamentals,such as the major food components essential for dog health, best fruit snacks, etc.
I recommend you visit dietfordogs.net to learn more about how to make your own food.
Best Regards,

Black dogs rock!
Barked: Sun Nov 10, '13 10:16am PST 
Flicka ~ CGC

NO-ONE is going- to sneak up on- my Mummy
Barked: Sun Nov 10, '13 7:19pm PST 
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