Celeto Standard & Miniature Poodles
Feeding A Natural Species-Appropriate Raw Diet
Never feed COOKED bones, as they can splinter!!
We believe nutrition is a vital component to the longevity and quality of life; and feel strongly that a natural species-appropriate raw diet is the foundation of which good health is built. Cooking damages many elements in food that are vital to good health. Everything about a dog's anatomy points to a fresh meat based diet. Just like the wolf, fox, coyote, hyena, lion, tiger and other wild relatives; domestic dogs have sharp teeth for tearing flesh and gnawing on bones. Their digestive tract is short and digestive secretions highly concentrated which make them well suited for consuming raw meats, raw bones, fresh fruits and vegetables, raw eggs, berries, etc.
The great condition of our puppies and adult dogs is directly attributed to their natural raw diet, probiotics and supplements. We see shiner and better skin and coats, cleaner teeth and fresher breath, reduced need for veterinary teeth cleaning, great energy levels & stamina, less & smaller stools, proper weight, reduction of allergy symptoms, improved digestion, and most of all, poodles that are not only happy, but healthy and thriving! We feed our poodles raw dog food from select vendors. We wean our puppies onto ground raw meats. Our probiotics & supplements come from Nature's Farmacy.
Natural Pet Food Suppliers
Rawsome Pets, located in Plainfield, IL offers high quality raw foods to the Chicagoland area with pick-up locations offered.
Farm 2 Bowl, located in IL, offers a wide range of premium raw pet foods with delivery options.
My Pet Carnivore, located in Indiana, offers a wide range of products with excellent quality. Due to COVID they no longer deliver outside of IN. they still do ship within the U.S.A.
For our local puppy buyers, both of these stores carry an excellent selection of raw, dry and canned dog foods:
Healthy Pet Natural Pet Care Market, in North Aurora near the outlet mall
Wet Nose, in the Geneva Commons
When feeding a species-appropriate raw diet, freezer space is a MUST. You store raw dog food in the same way you would store your own raw meats. Make sure it is secured in proper packaging, such as plastic bags or covered plastic containers and store it in the freezer. When you are ready to serve the raw dog food, it should be taken out of the freezer and refrigerated or left at room temperature just for a time sufficient for defrosting. Additionally, only the portion for two to three meals should be defrosted. We recommend feeding out of pyrex or stainless steel dishes, never plastic.
Why Feed a Raw Food Diet?
More and more professionals in the world of dogs; breeders, veterinarians, breed ring handlers, sports competitors, as well as, thousands of concerned pet owners, are advocating a second look at what we feed our animals. We firmly believe our dogs are not only more healthy but also thrive on a raw, natural diet. Commercial pet foods simply cannot supply the nutrients necessary for optimal health and longevity; but instead, these foods may also contribute to long-term health problems. And, just like us, our pets are what they eat! Switching your dog with an existing health problem to a raw diet can often produce an improvement in their condition. Among healthy animals, a natural species-appropriate raw diet is likely to help them avoid some of the illnesses that are now becoming common in our companion animals. Regardless of the starting point for your puppy or dog, a high quality raw diet will help promote a long and healthy life.
We highly recommend the following books and magazines:
- Dr. Karen Becker's book, Real Food For Healthy Dogs and Cats
- The RAW food books by Dr. Ian Billinghurst
- Whole Dog Journal. Their recipes and the information for a raw food is excellent.
- Dogs Naturally An excellent holistic dog magazine
- Natural Remedides for Dogs and Cats, by CJ Puotinen - An excellent book featuring healing herbs and therapies
Frequently Asked Questions Concerning Feeding a Raw Diet
Question: Aren't commercial foods a complete diet for animals?
Commercial diets themselves are generally not considered the best source of nutrition for your pet for a few reasons:
Cooking destroys the live enzymes found in raw foods.
Ingredients in commercial foods are not always high quality.
Preservatives may adversely affect your pet's health.
Commercial diets contribute to periodontal disease.
Question: Do you actually feed your animals raw bones?
Yes! Feeding raw bones most often fed are chicken necks, chicken frames, duck frames and beef bones.
NEVER feed COOKED bones as they can splinter!!
Question: Why should I feed my dogs raw bones?
Bones are the best toothbrushes known!!! Tooth decay is expensive both in terms of canine dentistry and potential disease that can enter the bloodstream from the decayed teeth.
The nutrients in a RAW bone are natural, perfectly balanced and unchanged. The minerals and essential fatty acids, proteins and vitamins are, on nature's terms, in perfect harmony. Not only is calcium present - but many other needed minerals.
RAW bone has the anti-oxidants and naturally occurring enzymes to help build a strong immune system and keep the dog's internal organs in good shape. All natural enzymes are killed when food is cooked.
The exercise required to gnaw and pull and mouth and rip and crunch is both great physical and *mental* stimulation for the dog. The jaw and neck muscles get a work out - the leg muscles get a work out; even the back muscles need to work hard and, last but not least, They enjoy the whole experience!
Question: Should I be concerned about bacteria and parasites?
Raw meat may indeed contain bacteria and parasites. However, a dog's gastro-intestinal system is constructed and functions much differently from that of a human, so generally, most dogs can handle normal numbers of both bacteria and parasites.
A dog's stomach acids are more powerful than human stomach acids; thus food is digested much more rapidly.
Most digestion takes place in the stomach.
A dog's intestinal tract is much shorter than man's is, and digested food passes through more quickly, providing less opportunity for harmful bacteria and parasites to become established. The use of apple cider vinegar also helps assist the gastro-intestinal system in dealing with the bacteria and parasite load associated with feeding raw meat. It is also a great benefit to your pet to locate a source of organically raised and processed meat. Devoid of antibiotics and steroids these meats are also of benefit as they are hand processed. This lessens the amount of salmonella due to ruptured intestines during processing at the packaging plant.
Question: Is raw food good for every animal?
Most dogs can handle a raw based diet, however, IF your pet is not in good health, it may not be able to cope with the challenge of switching from commercial to raw food. It may be that the intestinal wall of an animal raised primarily on commercial food is thinner than those on raw diets, and, thus, an unhealthy animal may not be able to handle the increased demand on their system of raw food and/or its accompanying bacteria/parasite population. An unhealthy animal ought to be restored to health before trying to switch to raw foods.
Please view this video from Dr. Becker regarding this very issue Common Feeding Mistakes That Can Harm Your Pet
We advocate certain prepared dog foods as rated in the Whole Dog Journal. Feeding your dog does not have to be troublesome, confusing or overwhelming.
Prepared Raw Dog Foods we support:
Freeze dried mix to add to ground meat:
Often, I am asked what dry & canned dog foods I recommend. There are new foods coming on the market all the time, as well as formula changes, which make selecting dog foods challenging. I recommend the website the dog food advisor to help navigate the market. The Whole Dog Journal is another excellent resource when learning to read labels and what to look for in quality dog food. A fantastic holistic dog magazine, Dogs Naturally is filled with great articles from the best holistic vets.
I highly encourage everyone to try a natural raw diet, however, I know that is not always possible due to a variety of reasons so the ultra premium high quality dry kibble I find better than most on the market is adequate to feed. Dogs need variety in their dry kibble, thus I recommend rotating protein sources and or brands with each bag. Food allergies are acquired by repeatedly feeding the same foods to dogs over and over for months to years on end. Dietary variety is critical for developing a balanced immune system. Variety is also key to a nutritionally balanced puppy. There is no such thing as “the best food” to feed your dog. The best foods includes beef, turkey, lamb, rabbit, buffalo, chicken, quail, goat, salmon, venison, and ostrich…ALL of them, not just one of them. Providing variety also assures your puppy will have a broad nutrient intake and reduces the likelihood of him or her having a “sensitive stomach,” which is common when young animals are only fed one food source for months at a time. Variety is so very important; when you have found some foods that your dog does well on, rotate them. Rotate your dog’s food at least every 3 months with a different protein source. Meaning, if you start your puppy on chicken, the next time try lamb, then fish, then beef, then buffalo, then rabbit, etc. Dogs, like humans, need to eat a variety of foods!! Your dog will be happy to have their taste buds awakened too! With increased kidney issues, among all breeds of dogs adding moisture to kibble is highly recommended. Water or broth, as well as, a heaping spoonful or two of a great canned food mixed in. I also recommend adding probiotics to your dog's meals to aid in digestion and help promote the healthy bacteria in your dog's gut. Although I recommend and advocate a raw food diet; there are many alternatives for a premium feeding program both raw and processed.
Important things to be aware of when reading labels are:
*Avoid fat as being one of the first 4 ingredients
*Specific Meat and Meat Meal need to be the first couple of ingredients
*No corn or corn by-products
*No by-products or by-product meal
*At least 3% fiber
*Avoid Brewers yeast
*Avoid Soybean products
Please feed a food that does not have Citric Acid used as a fat preservative
*Choose Low Carb foods
*Choose a holistic food or human grade ingredient food
There have been questions raised in light of the information released by the FDA about nutritionally-mediated DCM.
It is not yet known exactly what it is about the formulation of the foods associated with nutritionally-mediated DCM that is the problem, but one area of suspicion is the high legume content seen in these foods. The excessive use of legumes in high end, expensive grain free foods has been an alarming trend for the past several years and it's devastating that dogs are becoming very ill from some of these foods.
I continue to feed our dogs a species appropriate raw diet, however I know that is not always possible. Whatever the cause, if you need to feed a ultra premium dry kibble, I recommend avoiding the foods with the most cases of nutritionally-mediated DCM. I also recommend talking with your vet, feeding foods without legumes high or frequent on the ingredient list and rotate proteins and brands in case there is a problem with the formulation of any given food.
Here is the latest FDA information about DCM: