Your Dogs Life with Natural and Raw Food Diets
pooch is the intestinal inside of a wolf
that has remained unchanged for centuries.
It works well on natures diet of mainly
meat and vegetables and minerals found in
the herbivores they hunt and eat. It does
not work well on grain or cooked foods found
in human diets. Meats are processed efficiently
and pass through the digestive system in
4-5 hours giving energy and vitality. Feed
such as grain is in there for 16 hours or
more and just makes for a lot of poop in
Dogs like wolves need a diet of 75% fresh
meat and 25 % vegetables. Wolves get this
from eating herbivores and berries. We can
get close to this diet from a balance of
raw meat and vegetables in the same 75/25
Canned or manufactured dog foods are insufficient
to give your dog a balanced diet to be healthy.
They have chemical preservatives and grain
that are indigestible and are mostly a poor
source for energy and are deficient in vitamins
especially after baking. Depending on which
you buy they typically have less animal
protein than necessary. Performance foods
are better than Premium, which are better
than Regular or Lite (either of which you
should not be buying).
Signs of a diet problem are – no appetite
for the food - big stools – bad gas
–bad teeth –bad breath –burps
– constant shedding – dull coat
– smells doggy even when dry - prone
to ear and skin infections - no energy –
hyperactive – easily gets fleas –
easily gets worms –immune system impairement.
Your dog needs
Animal and vegetable proteins (amino acids)
– animal proteins give energy
Fats (animal and vegetable)
Water ……….lots of it !!!
MEAT (Meat supplies protein, Meat supplies
OFFAL ( Liver,Kidneys, Heart, Unbleached
VEGETABLES ( Broccoli, Spinach, Celery,
Bok Choy, Carrot, Capsicum)
FRUIT ( Whole Apple, Whole Pear, Whole Grapefruit,
WHOLE EGG, FLAX SEED, GARLIC, KELP, ALFALFA,
Why? Learn more about... Evolutionary
Nutrition and Barf
to make raw food for your pets?--- Recipes
Improvements over your existing
diet (we use and recommend)
from one of the Natura EVO dry foods that
have NO GRAIN. There is a good choice of beef,
chicken and turkey, duck and rabbit.
Lunch of a raw
bone knuckle of pork or beef. Raw
dinner from a frozen pattie (can be
rewarmed) of minced meat and vegetables …Recipe
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Recipe 1: (
By Evergreen Acres Petting farm in San Jose
(1 Week supply of Raw Meat Patties for a 50
lb active Pooch )
(our recipe includes raw goat milk as we have
4 lbs Ground meats – beef and/or lamb
and/or chicken or turkey
2 cups Raw Goat Milk (cows
milk not recommended) OR 1 cup Yogurt
( OR 2 table sp Goat cheese OR ½ lb
Chicken heart or liver OR 1 cup Kefir milk)
3 Raw Fresh Eggs
1 Garlic clove
1 1/2 lb Mixed Veggies (Sweet potato, Broccoli,
zucchini, kale, spinach)
Make into Patties and freeze. You can size
the patty proportionally for your pooch.
We recommend 1 Half pound patty per day for
a 25 lbs dog if they are also getting a Raw
Bone for lunch and some dry meat food for
Here is a video to show you how to make raw
dog food. Very easy! Click video below and
information is from the best websites for
raw food information we have found. Check
DIET™ Feeding Guide -- By
Dr. Billinghurst (Barf Diet is a Trademark
BARF is an acronym for Biologically
Appropriate Raw Food. Every living animal
requires a biologically appropriate
diet. And if you think about it, not
one animal on earth is adapted to eating
a cooked food diet. To maximize your
pets’ health, he requires protein
from sources like his wild ancestors.
Dr. Billinghurst's BARF DIET™
provides "first-class" proteins,
including chicken, beef and lamb. These
are the same fresh meats you would buy
for yourself with one important exception....it's
'bon-e-fied' biologically appropriate
raw food! How Much to Feed?
No two dogs are alike in their metabolic
rates, age, or activity levels. Remember
that a lean dog will be healthier in
the long run. You can feed more or less
of the BARF diet in order to keep your
dog at its optimum weight. Feed normal
active dogs 2% of their body weight
per day. For example, a 50 pound dog
may do very well on one pound of BARF
per day, a 100 pound dog, 2 pounds of
barf per day. A highly active dog may
require 3% of their body weight per
patty weighs 1/2 lb.
2% body weight
4% body weight
6% body weight
12 lb. dog
12 lb. dog
12 lb. dog
1 ½ Patty/day
25 lb. dog
25 lb. dog
25 lb. dog
50 lb. dog
50 lb. dog
50 lb. dog
100 lb. dog
100 lb. dog
100 lb. dog
Can you buy raw food for pets?
Grandad's is the cornerstone of a Back to
Basics way of feeding your favorite
pet foods are 100% human-consumable
grade meats. All our chicken is Rocky®
free-range chicken. Grandad's is ground
fresh daily and fresh frozen immediately.
• Chicken Blend
Contains ground chicken necks, backs
and breast bones.
• Double-Ground Chicken
The same as the above, but a much finer
grind for kittens, puppies, and toy
• Beef Blend
Contains beef heart, beef kidney and
• Beef Heart & Chicken
Blend Contains beef heart,
ground chicken necks, backs and breast
• Beef Heart, Chicken
& Vegetable Blend Contains
beef hearts, chicken breast bones, sweet
potatoes, broccoli, kale, carrots and
• Chicken & Vegetable
Blend Contains ground chicken
necks, backs, breast bones, sweet potatoes,
broccoli, kale, carrots and zucchini.
Grandad's is a company with a rich heritage.
Grandad's Pet Foods' predecessor provided
pets with nutritious food for over 30
years. Today Grandad's is leading the
"back to basics" natural method
of pet nutrition. Grandad's products
contain only fresh, raw, natural ingredients
formulated to keep your pets healthy
We leave a lot out of Grandad's pet
Grandad's pet foods contain only ingredients
that are good for your pets like 100%
human-consumable grade, fresh, raw
meat, raw bones, and raw vegetables.
With Grandad's you won't get any preservatives,
artificial additives, artificial coloring,
added water, salt, or sugar. Less
A special note about our chicken.
All Grandad's chicken is Rocky®
free-range, no-antibiotics, no-growth-stimulants,
no-hormones chicken from Petaluma
Poultry in California. Rocky chickens
We freeze our pet foods for freshness
Grandad's pet foods are ground fresh
daily and immediately after grinding
and blending, packaged in a two-pound
Chubb, fast frozen, and delivered
to you or your pet food store. You
thaw only the amount you need for
each feeding. Thawing can be done
in your refrigerator or microwave.
Feeding Grandad's pet foods raw is
safe for your pet.
Although you can cook Grandad's, we
recommend that you serve our pet foods
raw. The dog and cat digestive system
differs from that of humans because
it is capable of safely processing
raw meats and actually derives greater
nutritional benefits from a raw diet.
Provided you feed our food fresh and
practice standard health procedures
for handling raw meat, most pets can
transfer to a natural diet within
You create your pet's special diet
All pets are special and unique. Just
like Grandad's. Our pet foods are
designed to be the foundation for
a healthy diet. You can mix Grandad's
with other of your pet's favorite
foods to create a nutritionally complete
diet. We suggest you always consult
your veterinarian before changing
any pet's diet.
Many menus and other resources are
available for home-prepared pet meals.
Please call us or email firstname.lastname@example.org
for more information.
Preparing Grandad's meals is easy.
Here's how we suggest you do it. Depending
on pet size or number of pets, either
defrost an entire chubb or divide
the Grandad's frozen Chubb into portions
suitable for one feeding. You can
divide Grandad's by hitting a meat
cleaver or large kitchen knife with
a rubber or plastic mallet. Next put
each portion into an individual zipper
bag and return them to the freezer.
Then the night before the next feeding
move one portion from the freezer
to the refrigerator to thaw.
Note: If your pet doesn't like cold
food, consider placing the locked
bag in a container of warm water to
remove the chill. You can also thaw
Grandad's this way if you forget to
take the portion out of the freezer.
Purchasing Grandad's pet food is
Call us at 800-644-5667 or see our list
of distributors to locate a Grandad's
retailer near you. Grandad's also personally
delivers in many areas in Northern California
and the Los Angeles area for a nominal
delivery fee. UPS delivery is available
throughout most of the United States.
Contact us for more information
Raw Meat and Dairy Products Safe?
Christie Keith of www.caberfeidh.com
I got a letter from a member saying that,
after posting to a discussion list that
she feeds raw meat to her pets, she was
warned in the direst of terms about risks
such as salmonella, e. coli, and many more.
This challenge is very familiar to those
of us who feed raw meat and dairy products
to our carnivorous pets. Most vets draw
back in horror, as do a vast majority of
pet-owners and even butchers.
But those pathogens are not an intrinsic,
innate part of meat, eggs, or dairy products.
They are contaminants, mostly caused by inhumane
and highly industrialized livestock producing
practices. Hens live in wire cages, several
to a cage and one on top of the other, so
that the droppings and urine of the hens drip
all over the hens below, and the eggs. Cattle
are crammed into small feedlots, stuffed on
grains laden with antibiotics, and sprayed
with pesticides to kill the flies that swarm
all around the filthy stockyards. Chickens
are fed a diet of processed grains, animal
by-products, and antibiotics.
Dogs and cats are carnivores, and evolved
eating raw meat. Their systems can handle
a certain amount of bacteria; indeed, they
were designed for it. But the bacterial load
of most commercial foods is so high, many
carnivorous animals would indeed sicken if
they ate them raw. The rationale of cooking
is, in short, to kill these contaminants.
So how do we dare to suggest that it's not
just safe to feed raw meat and dairy products
to our dogs and cats, but beneficial?
This is a multi-dimensional issue. First of
all, I never feed my animals commercially
raised foods. This makes a huge difference,
as bacterial counts are much lower when the
animals are allowed to get out, move around,
spread their droppings and urine around, and
let fresh air and sunlight do their work of
disinfecting. The animals are also healthier
themselves, requiring fewer drugs. (Most free-range
meats are raised without any drugs or hormones;
if the producer is not willing to state that
in writing, I'd look elsewhere for a supplier.
Also, in many states, the term "free
range" is not regulated or defined by
law. Be sure and investigate the practices
of the grower, and make sure the animals actually
are getting the benefits of ranging.)
In addition, our dogs and cats evolved eating
raw meat, and the consumption of cooked flesh
is totally and completely unnatural for them.
They do not get optimum nutrition from it,
it is not well digested by them, and it not
what their organs were designed to process.
Eating a raw diet, based on the evolutionary
diet of the dog or cat, will make the animal
healthier. This healthier animal will be able
to handle a certain amount of bacteria in
its food, and will be resistant to most disease-causing
microorganisms it encounters.
Further, dogs are not just predators but scavengers,
and evolved eating rotten and decaying flesh,
as well as the droppings of herbivores and
even other carnivores. They can handle bacterial
loads that would kill us, without blinking
Genetically and evolutionarily speaking, today's
dog and cat are no different from their flesh
and bone-eating ancestors. However, they may
not be in good enough health to handle even
the smaller load of bacteria that is present
in free-range or organic meat and dairy products.
This is part of the art of natural rearing:
to evaluate the health of the animal, and
find the best way to bring them to optimal
health as quickly and safely as possible.
The feeding of the raw, species-appropriate
diet can, by itself, work literal miracles
on many animals. I rarely do anything but
just start feeding raw, even with very young,
convalescent, or very old dogs and cats. I
have never had a single problem with food
borne illness in any dog, cat, puppy, or kitten
since I began feeding raw in 1986. With an
animal that is sick, or on antibiotics, or
who has been given immune-suppressing drugs
like cortisone, however, I ease them over
I begin with a cooked version of the raw diet,
using poached eggs, cooked meat, steamed bone
meal, the usual supplements, and raw, food-processed
veggies. I never use ground meats; the contaminants
are on the surface of the meat, so when the
meat is ground it is spread all through the
resulting mixture. With chunks, you can poach
the meat, leaving the inside rare or raw,
and still kill the surface contamination.
As the animal's health improves, I simply
cook the meat or eggs less and less, until
they are raw. I then introduce soft raw bones,
primarily chicken necks, and from then on
I ease them into the new diet. Those who are
very fearful can also soak the meat in a mixture
of standardized grapefruit seed extract and
water; this will kill surface contamination.
I have seen a number of recommendations for
potency and length of soaking time; I would
suggest that you buy the product at your health
food store and then phone the manufacturer
for the specifics.
Is feeding raw without risk? No, it's not.
Feeding a raw diet does entail risk, but having
fed raw since 1986, I have to conclude the
risk is far smaller than the huge benefit
I've seen. There are dogs and cats (and people)
who contract salmonella and other illnesses
from raw meat and dairy products (and many
of them who contract them from contaminated
cooked foods), and it's possible that your
pet might succumb as well. It is a question
of weighing the risk against the benefit,
and making up your own mind.
To shudder with horror at the thought of giving
a carnivorous predator raw meat is silly;
shudder instead at the sad state of the modern
factory farm, and how the livestock industry
has trained us to accept that our foods are
so filthy we don't dare any longer to "give
the dog a bone."
Caber Feidh Scottish Deerhounds is owned by
Christie Keith and her mother, Kathleen McKenzie.
The website is also recommended by http://www.pethobbyist.com/
Dr. Billinghurst http://www.barfproducts.com/
It is now generally agreed that the ancestor
of the modern dog is the wolf. What
is not clear is how long that domestication
process has been going on. It may
have been as short as 10,000 years
or as long as 50,000 years, or possibly
more. No matter how long it has been,
that process of domestication where
our ancestors removed the 'wildness'
from the wolf, involved thousands
of years of selective breeding. They
took an animal that could well have
seen them as food, and through selective
breeding, produced an animal that
became their best friend.
In this process, our ancestors produced
hundreds of 'different looking wolves.'
These various "breeds" -
as we now know them - were and are
developed for a particular task or
tasks. Whether it was hunting for
large prey, exterminating vermin,
guarding, herding, being a companion
or a foot warmer, each breed fulfilled
a set of needs in the society in which
it was developed.
The result is that each breed is not
only different to look at, but also
has a unique mind set which relates
very much to the task(s) it was bred
to perform. However, our dogs also
retain many of their wolf-like characters,
including their pack mentality. This
includes the need to either lead or
be led. Today, as we train our dogs,
we need to be aware of both the unique
mind set of our particular breed and
the basic pack mentality, the wolf-like
traits, which still dominate our dogs'
The point I am making in regard to this discussion is that
to produce the dog,
our ancestors made only two basic
changes to the wolf.
They changed the wolf's appearance and
they changed its mind. What they did
not change, was the basic internal
workings or or physiology of the wolf.
There was no need to. As a result,
the basic workings or physiology of
modern dogs is no different or very
little different to their ancestor
the wolf. Modern dogs grow and function
(and malfunction) in very much the
same way as the wolf.
To produce a fully functioning adult
dog, our modern pup needs to grow
in exactly the same way as the wolf
pup. If we vary the food and the exercise
too drastically, we will alter the
finished product. We will produce
To be more specific...
The basic environment which the modern
dog requires in terms of food and
exercise is exactly the same as it
was (and still is) for the wolf. So
although we have carried out selective
breeding to alter our dog's outward
appearance and mind, we have not asked
it to cope with, nor have we selectively
bred it to deal with any dramatic
change in feeding or exercising. Until
Think about how
wolves have survived
They have had no vets to radiograph their
hips and select sound breeding stock.
There have been no progesterone tests
prior to breeding, no ultrasound to
detect pregnancy, no blood tests to
ensure that health is perfect, no
caesarians, no injections after giving
birth, no worming, no extra calcium,
no vaccinations or puppy checking,
or treatment of problems.
There are no dog food companies out there
supplying them with super premium
foods. There is no one to make sure
that their every meal is complete
and balanced. There is no one to make
sure they never eat egg whites. No
one to protect them from eating bones.
No one to cook their food and to make
sure they do not contact dangerous
bacteria such as E. Coli or Salmonella,
and most especially no one to ensure
they receive the correct ratio of
calcium to phosphorus so that puppies
will have perfect bone growth. All
the wolves have is themselves.
We have much to
learn from the wolves
Wolves rely on their stamina and strength
to survive. Any animal unable to hunt
or compete with the others for food
because of skeletal problems would
certainly not survive. The free moving
healthy looking wolves I have observed,
appeared to have perfect bone and
joint health. Why are the wolves -
without the 'benefits' of modern veterinary
technology, without truckloads of
super premium dog food, and without
calcium supplements - doing so well?
The answer is very simple. They are
living in a biologically appropriate
environment in terms of food and exercise.
They are getting what they need. They
have no need of modern technology.
By contrast our dogs are not receiving
what they need in terms of diet and
exercise. Despite our technology.
.....our dogs are doing badly!
Let us go on and examine the lifestyle
of a group of wolves. The lifestyle
of any group of wild dogs. That lifestyle
will show us the basic principles
which we should use to determine how
dogs should be fed and exercised today,
for maximum present and future health.
You will discover that such a diet
is simple, straightforward, and uncomplicated.
Just like the lives of those wolves.
First, the eating...
Wild dogs do not eat regular meals.
Nobody plans their meals. Nor do they
have an all meat diet. On the other
hand, no one single meal is complete
and balanced. Raw bones with meat
are a major part of their diet. Lots
and lots of it! In the winter they
dig up and eat frozen food. They eat
offal such as liver and heart. They
eat raw eggs. They eat decaying material.
Food that is slightly off.
They may eat once a day or five or six
times a day, depending on the season
and what sort of food is available.
They have days when they go hungry.
They have days when they pile food
into themselves almost beyond capacity.
They eat when food is available, and
as the urge takes them. They eat a
wide variety of foodstuffs. Insects,
bark, soil, birds - complete with
their tiny bones and feathers - whatever.
Every meal they eat is totally raw.
Not one skerrick of it is cooked.
They eat vegetables including herbs,
from the gut of their prey. This vegetable
material is raw, totally crushed and
partly digested. They eat feces. A
wolf's diet contain almost no grains.
Wolves never eat cooked grain. In
eating the intestinal contents of
their prey they will eat some grain
which is usually immature and green.
Most certainly they do not eat a totally
grain based diet like the modern dog,
subjected to a lifetime of dried dog
food. Even if their prey had been
eating mature seed heads, by the time
the wolf pup or adult gets to eat
this grain, it has been ground to
a paste and soaked in the juices of
the herbivores intestines. A totally
different product to the masses of
cooked and processed grains fed to
dogs today. Not only that, these few
grains are mixed in with a mass of
other grassy and herbaceous material.
For a wolf - not one single meal consists of dry dog food.
They don't eat canned dog food either.
As tiny pups, still with their mother,
the wolf pups are well looked after.
After weaning things change dramatically.
However, before we tackle that, let's
look at the weaning process itself.
This deserves our attention as it
has important lessons for how we wean
our pups today. Wolf pups are not
weaned using cereals or bowls of milk
or mushed up dried or canned dog food,
or bread soaked in milk. From the
moment the weaning process begins,
the wild pup begins a diet which is
based on the carcasses of other animals
- mostly herbivore.
Mum begins the process by vomiting. She
vomits up food for the pups, starting
when they are three to four weeks
of age. These young pups crunch their
way through and eat any tiny or soft
bones, they rip and tear at the meat
attached to larger bones, and they
suck and chew at the organ meats swimming
in a sea of fermenting totally crushed
vegetable material. All totally raw.
They also eat whatever they can scavenge
from left over carcasses left lying
around their immediate vicinity. This
includes - once again - raw meaty
bones and bits of liver and raw partly
digested totally crushed and sometimes
fermenting vegetable material.
The young pups
are not protected from feces...
With its E. coli or Salmonella or
Campylobacter or a myriad of other
bacteria or protozoa. Instead, they
eat it and develop healthy immune
systems, well able to deal with the
normal bacteria and other micro-organisms
in their environment. In addition,
they are able to - and of course have
to- build a resistance to intestinal
When weaning time comes around, do your
pups enjoy similar 'advantages'? The
question is how far should we adapt
these principles as we rear our pups
today? Certainly I am not suggesting
we should allow our pups to be wormy
or to be needlessly exposed to high
levels of pathogenic bacteria by feeding
meat that is rotten or anything like.
They should not however, be totally
protected from such things. Their
food must be raw. I am strongly suggesting
that what young wolves or dingoes
or foxes eat, deserves our very close
attention. This is what we need to
Once wild pups
They don't join in the serious hunting,
but of course they do a lot of "play-hunting".
Insects, lizards, rodents, whatever
moves is fair game. They may even
catch and eat some of these. This
is important. Not for what they are
eating so much, but more for how they
are being exercised. Those few lines
contain the vital information on which
to base the exercising of modern pups.
Wolf pups mainly eat at the family dinner
table. That is, they share in whatever
the older wolves have dug up, hunted
or scavenged. However, even this food
is not easily won. When mum looked
after them the young wolves had a
degree of protection. After weaning
it is a different story. They are
no longer pampered or cosseted. No
more favorable treatment. The pups
have now plummeted to the bottom of
the social heap. Instead of being
number one when meal time comes, when
the hunt is over, when that old or
frozen carcass is dug up or discovered,
the young weanlings as the lowest
members in the social order are last
in to the feast. They have to fight
for every morsel and scrap of food
they get. 'Manners' for a wolf pup
consists of not eating until the older
wolves 'allow' them. That is, when
all the others have had their fill.
The pups then have to fight amongst
themselves, until they too have established
an order of dominance.
Because the wolf pups only get to eat
the leftovers, most of the choice
bits have gone. So what is left for
them? There will be bones with scraps
of meat, little bits of organs such
as liver, heart, spleen, etc., that
the adults in their ravenous haste
missed. Lots and lots of gut contents,
consisting of masses of plant material,
raw, crushed and fermenting.
Because wolves and other wild dogs follow
the herd of deer, bison, antelope,
etc., pulling down the young, the
old, the injured and the sick, one
of the foods always available for
them is the feces of the animals they
follow. This is an important part
of their diet. They actually require
those healthy bowel bacteria. That
is why modern dogs seek out and eat
feces. Their own, other dogs', cats'
feces - whatever they can obtain.
The habit of eating feces supplies a
young pup with first class protein,
essential fatty acids, masses of vitamins
and plenty of healthy fiber. Research
tells us that feces eating by the
young of many species plays an important
role in bowel and brain health. The
bacteria in feces help in the development
of the immune system of the bowel
and undoubtedly assist in the prevention
of such problems as inflammatory bowel
disease. The essential fatty acids
present in feces have been shown to
play a vital role in the full development
of the central nervous system, particularly
the higher functions of the brain.
This is something we have to take
very seriously. Poor brain development
could well be one of the factors behind
much of the unprovoked aggression
we are seeing in modern dogs fed processed
I am not suggesting that our pups should
necessarily eat feces - although in
the countryside, young teenage and
adult dogs certainly do eat plenty
of nutritious and healthy cow, sheep,
rabbit, horse, and other herbivorous
feces. What I am saying is that we
must find suitable substitutes for
our dogs today. This is the basis
on which we may confidently supplement
our young pups' diet with yogurt and
other sources of probiotic; vitamins;
healthy clays; essential fatty acids
from fresh, cold extracted oils and
first class protein such as egg yolks
- all combined with raw crushed vegetable
"Although we humans have changed the appearance and
of the dog in all sorts of ways by
domestication, we have not changed
it's basic internal workings. In other
words, today's domestic dog has
essentially the same digestive system
and overall physiology
as it's ancestor the wolf"
Wolf pups do not
eat at regular times
The food supply is not regular. They
are not spoon fed. They have to battle
for their food. Obviously the food
needs to be adequate for survival
and healthy growth. However, it is
very rare that their hunger is ever
fully satisfied. These pups are lean
and hungry most of the time. There
are periods when they may go for twelve
or more hours without food. As a result,
they are not fat and roly poly. They
never grow at their maximum growth
rate. As a result they grow slowly.
It is not biologically appropriate
for a wolf pup to grow at its maximum
pace. There is at least one very simple
reason for this. A wolf pup raised
at top speed will develop skeletal
The pups do not get to eat a lot of fat.
Wild game is always very lean. The
relatively small amount of fat which
is present is not saturated, but full
of essential fatty acids. Quite different
to the fat found in modern farm fed
livestock; saturated and lacking in
essential fatty acids. The pups mostly
miss out on the fat because the adult
hunters will preferentially eat it
first. The pups get most of their
essential fatty acids from their habit
of eating feces and gut contents -
chewed up vegetation.
The older wolves will always eat until
they are absolutely jammed full of
food, go back to camp, vomit, and
then eat their vomit at a more leisurely
pace. Naturally, little bits of this
mixed up mess of food are left and
the pups can dart in and grab bits
and pieces of it. In the process they
also eat bits of dirt and leaves and
sticks etc. Soil, grass and other
fresh plant material are also eaten
by these hungry wolf pups quite deliberately.
What about dogs
in the 'Pre-Pet-Food' era?
How were they raised? The answer to that
is - not too differently to wild dogs.
Of course they did not have to hunt
for their food. For most domestic
dogs in the 'pre-pet-food era', much
of their diet was still composed of
raw meaty bones together with other
food scraps. Most importantly, the
bulk of that food was raw. This diet
definitely included plenty of vegetable
material. Not always raw however.
These dogs were not overfed. This is
because everybody was very relaxed
about feeding dogs. It was simple
and straightforward. Everybody knew
how to do it and trusted their instincts.
There was no drama if they forgot
to feed the pups. They would have
scavenged something for themselves
anyway. Nobody was racing to produce
the 'biggest, roundest, fattest, most
largest, beautiest - dog - ever, in
the shortest possible space of time.'
The bottom line for these dogs raised
in the pre-pet-food era is that the
degree to which they experienced ill
health reflected the degree to which
their owners departed from that biologically
appropriate method of feeding and
exercising that nature developed over
the hundreds of thousands of years
of the wolf's evolution.
Getting down to ingredient specifics ...
For millions of years, dogs
have cleaned up the remains
of other animal's bodies. Mostly
bones. That ability remains.
All modern dogs easily and joyfully
tackle bones. A dog's whole
system is designed for and in
fact needs bones to function
properly. Bones are living tissue
composed of living cells. Because
bones are living tissue, just
like any other part of the body,
they are a complex source of
a wide variety of nutrients.
Bones contain minerals which
are embedded in protein. They
also contain fat. If the bone
is from chicken or pork, then
that fat will be very high in
the essential fatty acids. Along
with the fat are fat soluble
vitamins. The central parts
of most bones contains marrow
which is a highly nutritious
mix of blood forming elements,
including iron. Raw bones also
provide natural antioxidant/anti-ageing
factors including enzymes.
is not hard to pick the dogs that eat bones. They look and act
The acid test however, is to look in their mouth and smell their breath.
I do this daily as part of
a routine examination of all the dogs that enter my practice..."
Bones are nature's storehouse of
minerals for your dog. If meat is added to bone, then methionine and most
of the B vitamins are supplied. Puppies and adult dogs fed bone rarely if
ever suffer from indigestion or diarrhea. They produce smallish
quantities of solid minimally offensive stools. It is highly probable
that bones play a similar role to fiber, that is, a role of bulking out
the food, thereby removing toxins and promoting general bowel health.
Bone eating dogs are long lived healthy dogs. They seem to be
particularly free of the degenerative diseases of old age.
Many people assume that a dog's
natural diet is a meat only
Unfortunately this is untrue
as a meat only diet is highly
unnatural and unbalanced. Meat
should form only a part of the
over-all diet, which should
include bone, fruits and vegetables
as well. For example, the muscle
meat eaten by wild dogs forms
a small part of the diet that
consists of a wide variety of
other foods, including bone.
What nutrients are in meat?
Meat supplies protein
That is its major role in nutrition. It also supplies varying amounts of
fat, water, and some vitamins and minerals. Because it supplies fat and
protein, it also supplies energy. Meat is first class protein. That is,
it contains all the essential amino acids necessary for dogs of all ages,
including growing dogs, pregnant dogs, female dogs feeding puppies and of
Meat supplies energy
There are no carbohydrates in meat. That is no starch or sugar or fiber.
As the fat content rises, the percentage of water drops and so does the
protein. As the fat content of the meat rises so does the energy it can
supply to your dog. The fat in different types of meat varies in the
levels of essential fatty acids present. Chicken and pork have the
highest levels while lamb and beef are both low. Lamb usually contains
more essential fatty acids than beef, but only because it has more fat.
Meat supplies some minerals
Raw meat is low in sodium and high in potassium. That is good news for
dogs with heart problems. The meat with the lowest sodium is beef, with
pork also being fairly low. The meat with the highest potassium is pork,
with chicken having the lowest potassium levels. This makes pork a good
all round meat for heart patients. Beef, lamb, chicken and pork meat are
all very low in calcium and moderately low in magnesium. This means they
are great foods for dogs prone to bladder stones. However, this lack of
minerals requires bone material in your dog's diet. Beef and lamb meat
are relatively well endowed with zinc, making them good foods for dogs
with a deficiency of zinc. Chicken has low zinc levels with pork
containing more than chicken but not as much as lamb and beef. Of the
meats, beef is the best source of iron.
In the wild, dogs eat the stomach
content and organ meat from
the animals they prey upon.
In fact, internal organs form
a vital part of the wild dog's
diet. Modern dogs have similar
requirements. Dogs consuming
these foods as part of a sensible
diet have superior health to
dogs that do not eat them. Although
organ meats are valuable dog
food, they are not required
in huge amounts. They are a
concentrated source of many
essential nutrients and are
particularly valuable during
times of growth, reproduction
and stress as a source of concentrated
In this one product is a vast range of important nutrition. Liver is the
most concentrated source of vitamin A and should be fed in small amounts
on a regular basis. It also contains vitamins E, D, and K in substantial
quantities. Liver is an excellent source of the minerals zinc, manganese,
selenium and iron. It also contains all the B vitamins, particularly B2,
B3, B5, biotin, folacin, B12, choline, and inositol. It contains B1 in
adequate or smaller amounts and is a good source of vitamin C. Liver
provides a source of good quality protein and the essential fatty acids,
both the omega-3 and omega-6 type. It's a fantastic food for your dog!
Not unlike liver, kidney supplies good quality protein, essential fatty
acids and many vitamins including all the fat soluble vitamins A, D, E
and K. Kidneys are a rich source of iron and all the B vitamins. They
also have good levels of zinc.
Like liver and kidneys, heart as dog food is an excellent source of
protein, B vitamins and iron. They do contain some essential fatty acids
and a little vitamin A. Heart contains appreciable levels of taurine
which is important food... for the heart!
Unbleached Green Tripe
Green tripe is the edible lining and accompanying content of a cow or
other ruminant's first or second division of the stomach. Paunch tripe
comes from the large first stomach division and honeycomb tripe comes
from the second division. Both wild canids and domestic dogs benefit from
eating tripe as it contains a very diverse profile of living nutrients
including enzymes, omega- 3 and 6 fatty acids, probiotics, and
phytonutrients. It has long been quoted as being "the finest of
Dogs have actually eaten vegetables
the whole period of their evolution,
and that's a long time! As such,
vegetables, particularly green
leafy vegetables should form
part of the domestic dog's diet.
Dogs need vegetables because
they contain many important
health promoting nutrients.
The fiber your dog obtains from
raw vegetables includes both
soluble and insoluble fiber.
Vegetables supply many other
nutrients. Many of those nutrients
are the ones that have been
found to be in short supply
in the modern dog's "civilized"
diet. This includes difficult
to obtain omega 3 essential
fatty acids, most of a dog's
vitamin needs, masses of enzymes
and various anti-aging factors,
including antioxidants and phytochemicals.
Broccoli is one of the most nutrient dense foods. It is dense in vitamin
C, beta carotene, folic acid, calcium and fiber. It is also a good source
of chromium. Like other members of the cabbage family, broccoli has
demonstrated remarkable anticancer effects. Broccoli contains several
important phytochemicals: beta carotene, indoles, and isothiocyanates and
over thirty-three cancer preventative compounds. Research suggests that
phytochemicals prevent carcinogens from forming, stop carcinogens from
getting to target cells and boost enzymes that detoxify carcinogens.
Spinach contains twice as much iron as most other greens. Like other
chlorophyll and carotene -containing vegetables, it is a rich source of
antioxidants. Besides beta-carotene, it also supplies two other
carotenes, lutein and zeaxanthin. Spinach has long had a reputation of
being very high in nutrients. It is a good source of fiber, calcium,
potassium and vitamins A, B6 and K.
Celery is rich in calcium, potassium, phosphorus, sodium and iron, as
well as vitamins A, B, C. The phytochemical 3-n-butyl phthalide, one of
the components that gives celery its characteristic smell and taste, is
especially potent as an anti-tumor agent. Along with the compound
sedanolide, an aromatic ingredient also found in celery, 3-n-butyl
phthalide significantly reduces the incidence of tumors in laboratory
animals. It is said to decrease nervousness, and is used as an acid
A cruciferous vegetable like cabbage, bok choy is an excellent source of
Beta carotene, vitamin C, thiamine, riboflavin and calcium. It contains
significant amounts of nitrogen compounds known as indoles, as well as
fiber - both of which appear to lower the risk of various forms of
cancer. Bok choy is also a good source of folate (folic acid).
The carrot is the king of the vegetables. It is the richest source of
pro-vitamin A carotenes among commonly consumed vegetables. But unlike
vitamin A, beta carotene and other carotenes in carrots do not cause
toxicity. Beta carotene is also a powerful antioxidant. Carrots also
contain vitamins B, C, D, E, K, riboflavin, niacin, calcium, potassium,
phosphorus, sodium, and iron. Carrots have repeatedly shown to nourish
the optic nerve and significantly improve eyesight.
This is an excellent source of many essential nutrients. By weight, red
peppers have three times as much vitamin C as citrus fruit. Moreover, red
peppers are quite a good source of beta carotene, and they offer a good
amount of fiber and vitamin B6. Because capsicum stimulates circulation
and enhances blood flow, it is considered food for the circulatory system
and as a digestive aid. Red peppers are one of few foods that contain
lycopene, a phytochemical that may help prevent various forms of cancer.
Yes, dogs can and do eat fruit.
Wild dogs - domestic dogs, they
all do it! Remember dogs are
omnivores. They can eat almost
anything. Fruits are mostly
water. After that, the major
nutrient in fruit is soluble
carbohydrate. That is simple
sugars. Energy foods. Fruit
contains lots of fiber. It also
contains vitamins, enzymes and
antioxidants. Because fruit
is a whole food, it also contains
minerals, small amounts of protein
and small amounts of fat. Two
nutrients present in most raw
fruits, vitamin A as carotene
and vitamin C, make fruit a
valuable food for your dog.
The enzymes present in raw fruit,
also make it important as part
of your dog's diet, particularly
if your dog is past middle age
and showing the beginnings of
Is it essential
that dogs eat fruit?
No. All of the nutrients present in fruit can be obtained from other
sources. However, by adding fruit to the diet, we ensure a wide variety
of foods. This gives the greatest chance of providing a balanced diet
with plenty of longevity and immune system promoting nutrients. Any fruit
can be fed to dogs, however tropical fruits are a particularly valuable
food as they contain lots of antioxidants. Scientists have discovered
that the enzymes and antioxidants present in fruit, many of which have
not yet been identified, keep the skin and indeed the whole body free of
degeneration and old age diseases.
Unpeeled apples are especially high in non-pro-vitamin A carotenes and
pectin. Pectin is a remarkable type of fiber that has been shown to exert
a number of beneficial effects. Due to its gel forming fiber, it can
improve the intestinal muscle's ability to push waste through the
gastrointestinal tract. Pectin also binds to and eliminates toxins in the
gut. Apples are also rich in beta carotene and vitamin C as well as
several B complex vitamins including vitamin B6, folic acid and lots of
Pears are an excellent source of water-soluble fiber, including pectin,
which makes them useful in toning the intestines. Fresh pears contain
potassium which is necessary for maintaining heartbeat, muscle
contraction, nerve transmission, and carbohydrate metabolism. Pears also
contain Vitamin C. An important antioxidant, Vitamin C is essential for
helping prevent free radical damage.
Grapefruit is a good source of flavonoids, water soluble fibers,
potassium, vitamin C, and folic acid. Grapefruit, like other citrus
fruits has been shown to exert some anticancer effects in both human and
animal studies. Grapefruit pectin has been shown to possess similar
cholesterol lowering action to other fruit pectins. The whole fruit
contains more pectin than the juice. Recently, grapefruit has been shown
to normalize hematocrit levels. The word hematocrit refers to the
percentage of red blood cells per volume of blood. Low hematocrit levels
usually reflect anemia. High hematocrit levels may reflect severe
dehydration or an increased number of red blood cells. Grapefruit seeds
are well known as an anti-fungal agent in that their consumption kills
many different types of parasites and assists the body in producing
beneficial bacteria. A biologically active natural ingredient found in
the seeds kills strep, staph, salmonella, e.coli, candida, herpes,
influenza, parasites, fungi and traveler's diarrhea, and is used as an
antibiotic, anti fungal, antiprotozoan and antiviral.
Everyone knows that oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C, but
they have more to offer nutritionally than just this nutrient. One orange
contains generous levels of folate (folic acid), potassium, and thiamin,
as well as some calcium and magnesium. Equally important to the
nutritional value of oranges is their supply of flavonoids, making
oranges a valuable aid in strengthening the immune system, supporting connective
tissues, and promoting overall good health. Oranges have been shown to
protect against cancer, and fight viral infections.
Eggs are absolutely brilliant
nutrition for your dog. Eggs
are a whole food, and often
regarded as having the perfect
protein. It is the one against
which all other proteins are
measured. Eggs contain a full
compliment of minerals, including
excellent levels of calcium
(mostly in the yolk), all the
vitamins except vitamin C and
a range of high quality saturated
and unsaturated fatty acids,
the nutrient lecithin and the
whole range of enzymes and other
longevity factors always present
in raw foods. The shell is included
as a further source of calcium.
Egg yolks are an essential food
for a dog with skin problems.
They contain sulphur containing
amino acids, biotin, vitamin
A, essential fatty acids and
Flaxseed has been used for more
than 10,000 years. The oil of
the seed is a rich source of
Essential Fatty Acids. Essential
Fats, or Essential Fatty Acids
(EFAs) are essential nutrients
that the body can't produce
itself. The only way to obtain
these nutrients is through diet.
EFAs are polyunsaturated fats,
which are considered "good"
fats. EFAs contribute to the
healthy functioning of cell
membranes, and are also critical
for the synthesis of eicosanoids,
a family of hormone-like substances
that help in cell maintenance
on a minute-to-minute basis.
Just like other essential vitamins
and minerals, EFAs are necessary
for good health.
Flaxseed contains bioactive compounds
called lignans, which have been proven to prevent cancer. Once consumed,
lignans found in flaxseed are converted by bacterial action in the colon
to mammalian lignans. They are then circulated through the intestinal
tract and liver where their action is potentiated. In the body, mammalian
lignans have estrogen-like and anti-estrogen effects. Scientists believe
the effects of lignans on estrogen metabolism, in addition to their
antioxidant properties, may explain why diets rich in lignans have a lower
incidence of cancer. Evidence suggests that lignans may also be
antioxidants, although the strength of their antioxidant activity is not
yet clear. Other studies indicate flax lignans reduce cholesterol and
prevent diabetes in animals. So far, scientists have isolated at least
three flaxseed components with potential health benefits. The first is
fiber, valuable for intestinal health. The benefits of the other two
substances, alpha-linolenic acid (a type of omega-3 fatty acid) and
lignans, suggests that these components may be helpful in prevention of
heart disease and perhaps in treatment of chronic kidney disease.
Garlic is nature's antibiotic.
There is no doubt that garlic
does confer some health advantages.
Garlic has been found to have
effective antimicrobial properties,
inhibiting the growth of both
bacteria and fungi. Garlic helps
stabilize blood pressure and
gives a good solid boost to
the immune system, keeping at
bay infections of various sorts
particularly upper respiratory
tract infections. Much of it's
success is due to various compounds
of sulphur. Garlic is a health
building and disease preventing
herb. It is rich in potassium,
zinc, vitamins A and C, and
selenium. It also contains calcium,
manganese, copper, vitamin B1
and some iron.
Kelp contains over 60 minerals
and elements, 21 amino acids
and simple and complex carbohydrates,
which promotes glandular health,
especially the pituitary, adrenal
and thyroid glands. Kelp supplies
a natural source of iodine and
acts as an antibiotic to kill
Alfalfa helps the body assimilate
protein, calcium and other nutrients.
This herb is a body cleanser,
infection fighter and natural
deodorizer. It is the richest
land source of trace minerals
and contains vitamins A, C,
E, K, B and D. Alfalfa also
contains bioflavonoids, and
eight digestive enzymes to promote
proper assimilation of foods.
The history of kefir is centuries
old. The word "kefir"
is said to have originated from
the word "keif" which
means" good feeling".
Kefir is like yogurt, but with
a greater variety of cultures
and significant health benefits.
Unlike yogurt, which typically
contains only two or three different
bacteria, true kefir contains
a greater range of different
microorganisms, each with its
own unique contribution. This
is what separates kefir from
all other cultured milk products.
Kefir is made by fermentation
of "kefir" grains,
which resemble minute cauliflowers.
The grains consist of casein
and colonies of microorganisms
that are grown together symbiotically.
Kefir can only be made from
The cultured kefir added to Dr.
Billinghurst's BARF DIET™ processes antimicrobial activity against
a wide variety of gram positive and gram negative bacteria, helping to
eliminate destructive pathogenic yeast and internal parasites. The
cultured kefir in Dr. Billinghurst's BARF DIET™ also contains a unique
extract of colostrum. All mammals produce colostrum, sometimes called
"first milk" or "foremilk". Research has shown
that concentrated forms of colostrum are able to block the effects of
harmful pathogens and aid in the maintenance of a healthy intestinal
tract. Colostrum also contains other nonspecific immune factors including
lactoferrin and lactoperoxidase, which help control pathogens or harmful
bacteria. These natural immune components can recognize and resist
multiple species of common bacteria such as E. coli, Staphylococci,
Streptococci, Klebsiella, Enterococci, Pseudomonas, Clostridium
Difficile, and Cryptosporidium.
Kefir is considered to be one of the
richest sources of enzymes. It plays a vital role in the development of a
healthy digestive tract and helps improve the immune system. Kefir
contains minerals and essential amino acids, an abundance of calcium and
magnesium. Rich in vitamin B1, B12, calcium, amino acids, folic acid and
vitamin K, it is an excellent source of biotin which aids the body's
assimilation of other B vitamins. Other benefits include bowel regularity
and decreased lactose intolerance. Evidence shows that the appropriate
strains of lactic acid bacteria in fermented milk products can alleviate
symptoms of lactose intolerance by providing bacterial lactase to the
intestine and stomach. Kefir is recommended to restore intestinal flora
while recovering from illness or when being treated with antibiotics. It
eliminates unwanted toxins and pollutants in the body, just like
antioxidants do with free radicals. Kefir enjoys a rich tradition of
health claims and is known around the world for its preventative
READING FOR NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION AND RECIPES
Billinghurst, Dr. Ian. Give Your Dog
The Practical Commonsense Way to Feed
Dogs. Australia: Bridge Printery, 1993.
Billinghurst, Dr. Ian. Grow Your Pups
With BonesThe BARF Programme For Breeding
Healthy Dogs and Eliminating Skeletal
Disease. Australia: SOS Printing Pty Ltd,
Case, Linda P., Daniel P. Carey, and
Diane A. Hirakawa.Canine and Feline Nutrition:
A Resource for Companion Animal Professionals.
St. Louis, Missouri: Mosbey-Year Book,
*Schultze, Kymythy R. The Ultimate
Diet: Natural Nutrition for Dogs and Cats.Descanso,
CA: Affenbar Ink, 1998.
Stombeck, Donald. Home-Prepared Dog
and Cat Diets: The Healthful Alternative.Ames,
Iowa: Iowa State University Press, 1999.
Volhard, Wendy. Back to Basics: The
Natural Diet.Wendy Volhard, 1996.