Hello and welcome back to the Gubba podcast!

I’m Gubba, a first time homesteader following in the footsteps of my homesteading forbears. In this podcast I discuss prepping, homesteading, and everything in between.

Today I am going to be discussing feeding your animals a raw diet. I share about this on social media, and I am sent so many inquiring messages that I thought I would dedicate a podcast episode to discuss it.

A lot of my content is centered around preparedness, homesteading, and health. I also think our animals who we love very much should be thought of as well in lifes journey, so that is why I feed my animals, specifically dogs in this case, raw food.

What is raw pet food?

Raw pet food is just that. It is food that our animals would eat naturally in an unaltered state. If you think of our cats and dogs, they are carnivores. Their ancestral diet didn’t consist of kibble or canned food. They were fed the scraps from what the family hunted and butchered, and they thrived.

Just this past year there was a farm dog who took the Guinness world record of being the oldest dog coming in at 30 years old. Yes! Thirty years old. How long is a typical life expectancy of dogs? I believe it is getting shorter to maybe 10-12 years. Except people are sharing stories with me how their young dogs around 5-6 years of age are getting cancer and passing away. What the heck is going on?

This dog that lived to be 30 years old, I love because I want my dogs to live to be that old. You know what the owners said that attributed to their precious dog living for 30 years?

Their name is Bobi by the way. They said they “credit his longevity to eating the same food as his humans (although free from seasoning), drinking a lot of water, having the freedom to roam around his nature-surrounded home, and the calm and peaceful environment Bobi lives in, far away from cities.”

Notice how they said that he eats the same food as his humans. What is that going to consist of on a farm?

Well, I can think of table scraps that are going to be non-processed foods like meat scraps and nothing like Cheetos or other garbage foods found in most households.

Bobi was probably living on prime rib and fresh well-water that hasn’t been laced with a plethora of toxic chemicals. Side note: city water has things like chlorine and fluoride added to it. If those chemicals are harmful to us, imagine how they may be harmful to our little pets.

What are the ingredients in dog or cat food?

So let’s take a step back and take a look at conventional pet food. First of all, I want you to know how well-hidden the actual ingredient list is for most dog food companies.

I went to purinas website and had to find a little text blurb where I could click to get the actual ingredients. They present them in such a deceitful manner like wow, we have the protein your dog needs and the vitamins and minerals, but the actual ingredients tell a different story.

I am specifically looking at the puppy chow, so keep in mind this is what is recommended to feed puppies. Ugh, little animals that are growing and need a good start at life. It’s disgusting to think that veterinarians will recommend this garbage but I understand that they were brainwashed in bought-out veterinarian schools so they think they are helping.

They aren’t. Here are the first few ingredients: Whole grain corn, chicken by-product meal, corn gluten meal, ground rice, soybean meal, animal fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols, egg and chicken flavor.

What should I feed my dog?

Whole grain corn is the first ingredient meaning it is the largest quantity of any ingredient on the bag. So your dog isn’t getting meat like Purina is marketing, they are getting fed corn.

Why? Because it is cheap. Second ingredient is chicken by-product meal. You may think, great! They are getting some meat. No, this isn’t actual chicken. This is by-product. This is the entrails of what is left after the animal is butchered so like organs and carcass.

You still may be thinking great! No, this is the stuff that they don’t have to keep properly. It can be left on a hot trailer to rot in the sweltering heat. It can come from sick and diseased animals and then that is fed to your animal. I’m all about the quality of food then nourishes us and our bodies.

If we are feeding our animals products from sick animals or from rotted meat, what do you think that does to them? The next ingredient is corn gluten meal, another garbage filler ingredient, ground rice, garbage, soybean meal, garbage, flavoring and more garbage. Yall, conventional animal food is poison. IT. IS. POISON.

How do dogs get cancer?

You may be thinking, well, I went to my veterinarian because my dog was sick and they recommended to put them on Purina. Yes, that is because they went to a veterinarian school that was paid for under the table by Purina.

Sick animals means money generated. It is similar to our food system. The more sick people, the more revenue can be generated. The sick and twisted part about the pet food system is that our sick animals can’t necessarily communicate to us that their food is poisoning them.

Eventually, their bodies will give out and you will discover they have cancer at the young age of 5 and wonder how in the world they could have ever gotten cancer? Your vet will say it is rare and I would say it is because of what was in their food dishes.

I would suggest anyone listening to look up “Purina food deaths” and see what populates for you. You would be shocked at how many dogs have adverse and fatal reactions to eating some of this chemical goop garbage.

My mom’s best friend lost her dog to a batch of bad dog food back in the late 2000s. I’m not going to detail what happened after the dog ate the food, but it was tragic. Many such cases like this online, and it is heartbreaking. I think it is because people really don’t realize what they are feeding their dogs. Not only do they not know what they are feeding their dogs, but when they finally make the switch to a better alternative, they are scared off.

For example, the word started to get out there about how atrocious conventional dog food was so people did start to switch to better alternatives with cleaner ingredients like brands like Acana, Fromm, and Nature’s Logic.

Then guess what happened?

The FDA rolled out a warning how these better alternative dog foods are causing heart problems in dogs and to watch out. This scared people away from these foods and no joke, vets even said to go back to Purina.

Don’t be swayed so easily people. Let’s use some critical thinking. Animals are dying left and right from Purina and other dog food giants and the FDA doesn’t do much. But all of the sudden there are a few cases of heart issues with better alternative dog food and the FDA puts out a huge warning.

This warning was all over the place at the veterinarians offices that year, I think 2019 if I remember right and it was printed at the place that I bought dog food from. Although this place was a holistic centered pet food place, they said they wanted people to know what was out there.

They also had a print out that pointed to documentaries that detailed the horrors of conventional dog food. I appreciated them being open about both sides. They did not sell Purina in their store and they were a wealth of knowledge when it came to pet food. Like beef being a warming meat and good to feed in winter and chicken and duck being cooling and good for summer treats.

Anyway, I am encouraging you to do your research and make your own choices on what works for you and your animals. I genuinely don’t judge. I do get sad when I see animals having to chow on food that makes them sick because they can’t communicate.

Then they are taken to the veterinarian who wants to do surgery or treatments like chemo. Imagine having to go through that and not being able to talk, that is heartbreaking. I think we can prevent pet cancer.

How do you feed your pet raw food? What are better alternative kibbles?

So what do I do? What do I feed my animals? Do I feed them raw chicken?

These are all questions I get asked. When I first got started, I researched better alternatives of pet food. I started my puppy on a brand of Kibble called Fromm. I liked that they had cleaner ingredients than Purina. Note, that if you feed kibble, soak the kibble in water for about 15 minutes to hydrate the kibble.

The kidneys have to compensate for the dry state of kibble and overtime this can run your animals kidneys into the ground. I’m not sponsored by any of these kibble places by the way.

I also used Acana and Orijen. These brands got bought out by big Pet Food though. I think the ingredients are still okay the last time I checked though. The pet food place I would get food from said they wouldn’t carry it if they changed the ingredients and I believe they still carry it so it passed that test. My favorite kibble though is natures logic.

I love how bare the ingredients are and I feel like they offer top quality kibble if that is the route you go. Keep in mind this kibble will be more spendy than Purina. Why? Because the ingredients are better quality and not filled with garbage like chicken by product and corn.

The next step I took was going actually raw. Making this jump can make you nervous, I get it. Because when you look at raw feeding, it seems complicated. I’m here to tell you that it isn’t. Think back to Bobi at the beginning of this podcast. The dog who lived off of human food and scraps to 30 years.

I feel like the perceived complexity makes it feel like it is hard to do so people don’t do it. Don’t overthink it. I ended up doing steves raw patties. Again, not sponsored. Loved their product because they had simple ingredients like actual chicken, liver, and organs. I kept them frozen and would just give the patties to my dogs.

Super easy and they have a food calculator on their site. Again, these are going to be even more spendy than a better alternative kibble. But keep in mind, vet bills are expensive too. In my mind, I am saving in vet bills because I’m not dealing with funky diseases because I chose to nourish my animals to the best of my ability. I believe Steves might have options for cats as well. Cats definitely benefit from raw food as well.

So once you get the hang of feeding raw and feel comfortable, you can jump into feeding your animal straight meat and organs. You can either source these from a local butcher like I do.

Huge shoutout to my butcher who is the most wonderful person ever. I love supporting as local as possible, you get to know your butchers and you can feel your sense of community growing.

So what I get from my butcher raw food wise is the scraps from what they butcher, so the bones, organs, and excess meat. They grind it up and put it into little 1lb. pouches for me to portion. So here is how I divvy it out. My dogs are all about 40-50lbs which one dog being 60-70lbs.

Activity and general metabolism will affect how much you feed as well, so this is where you will have to get to know your pet and keep an eye on their body and adjust. I promise this isn’t scary. I started out by giving everyone 1lb of butcher raw food a day. Because it is so nutrient-dense, I noticed two of my smaller girls 40-50lbs gaining some weight and a smaller male not gaining enough weight so I went to a half lb a day for the girls and 1.5lb for the male.

My big dog 60-70lbs is perfect on 1lb so that is what he gets. So your animals will be individual, so you just have to keep an eye and adjust accordingly for their ideal body and build.

Seriously, your local butchers will be a good source for raw food. Here is a few things you can ask for when you call. Ask if they sell dog food. Ask if they would be willing to grind the scraps up and sell dog food. Ask if they sell scraps that you then would process yourself.

For example, I got a 50lb box of organs and meat scraps from another butcher for 80 cents a lb. My 1lb bags from my butcher all ground up are 1.50/lb for reference. Another thing you can do is to ask if you can go through their garbage or dumpsters after processing days. I love to dumpster dive at the butchers for bones and extra scraps.

Is it safe to give raw chicken to dogs?

Another question I get is if I give raw chicken and raw pork? Yes, I give raw everything. It is important to note that I will never give cooked bones to dogs as the cooked bones will shard and can cause digestion problems as the bone shards scrape into the intestines.

I give raw eggs to my dogs on the daily as well straight from the chicken coop. Their coats are beautiful, they shine. Coat health can tell you a lot about your animals, cat, dog, goat, whatever.

My dogs coats are thick, shiny, and soft. Again, just do what you feel comfortable with but think about this: do you really think our animals ancestral diet consisted of processed kibble? It didn’t.

The pet food industry is similar to our food industry. It is designed to make our pets sick so then money is generated.

Why are pets getting cancer at an alarming rate? What is going on? 

We are trained to believe the veterinarians know best but when they are recommending my dog to eat corn meal and by-product I have to put my foot down somewhere. I understand they are just reiterating what they learned in school like when doctors suggest birth control to young teenage girls as a mass cure to underlying problems, but doing this is a PROBLEM.

The veterinarian schools are bought out yall. When you realize the world runs on money, you start to see things differently, even your pet’s food.

Well, I hope this podcast has helped you think about your pet’s food differently and has inspired more thoughtful food choices. Thank you for listening and spending your time with me! See you next time and have a wonderful day! Bye!

Feeding Your Pets Raw Food

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