Figuring out how much your puppy will eat is surprisingly simple. As a general rule of thumb, puppies eat 10-15% of their body weight in raw meat daily. So, if your puppy comes home at 10lbs, he will eat just over a pound a day. Then, divide that between how many meals per day (with a new puppy - 3, then drop down to 2) so each feeding will be about ½ a pound.
What is exciting, is because BARF fed dogs do not tend to overeat, you can let your puppy be your guide. Start by giving your puppy more than you think they will consume. In this case, serve a full pound of meat. Give your puppy a supervised half an hour to eat. Then, pick up the remaining food, and set it aside till his next meal. Next meal, top up what is there to about a pound again (or add another pound if that is easier), and repeat for ½ an hour. After a day or so, you will have a pretty good idea of how much you are puppy is eating. Most likely, it’ll be right around that 10-15% mark.
Though a growing puppy consumes up to 15% of their body weight, that number tapers off as they reach their full weight to about 2-3%. So, a 50lb dog will still consume 1 to 1 ½ lbs of meat per day. By gradually offering them raw meat as a greater portion of each meal, they will switch over quite quickly. You may find that your dog prefers the raw meat so much, that he begins turning his nose up at the kibble choosing to wait for the ‘goods’ at the next meal. In this case, the change may be faster than you had expect.
If you check around, you should be able to get the bulk of your meat for $1.00 lb more or less. That makes it cheaper than all high-quality commercial foods, and the only ones that cost less are the low end of the cost and quality spectrum. If you are choosing to feed your dog a quality diet, BARF is the cheapest way to go.
No. Even if it is a positive change, any change to your dog’s diet needs to be adjusted to. Some diarrhea as well as vomiting shortly after the change - especially if your dog begins refusing his kibble “cold-turkey” in exchange for the “warm-turkey”,- can be expected. Of course, it is always good to check with your dog’s vet if any symptoms are cause for concern.
We choose chicken as the staple for our dogs and find that little puppies do well first on chicken wings (which are slightly more expensive, but they do not eat them for long), and move to chicken backs and necks when they are able to handle them. Supplementing with beef and lamb are big favorites in our family.
The debate between vegetables or not can be a very heated one in some circles. I strongly encourage you to do your own research online, discuss with your vet or BARF-health support, and make a decision based on what you feel is best. Do not allow anyone else to bully you into a decision you do not feel is best. You are the best advocate for what your pet needs, and there is a team here to support you, but you ultimately need to make the final decision.
Yes we do. We provide our dogs with yogurt, eggs, fruits and vegetables. *Note* NEVER give any dog chocolate, onions, or any foods with ‘tannens’ (the colored skins that give wine/juice its color). This includes (but is not limited to): grapes, blueberries, cranberries, and most other berries. Please also check your yard for other plants that may be poisonous to your pet before bringing them home!
Your puppy will be weaned directly to raw meat from her mother. Depending on the puppy, she will be eating either chicken wings, or have graduated to backs and necks. I will let you know about your specific puppy a few days before she comes home. She will also have been given yogurt, eggs and fruit. Having about 3-5 pounds of raw chicken available should be all you need. I do find a small bag of puppy kibble makes good training treats when you need them. (a kibble is all a puppy needs - not a whole cookie.)
No. We will have transitioned your puppy to meat with bones in it before she comes home.
If you are around the 10% – 15% of body weight amount, and your puppy is energetic, playful and happy, then you can rest easy that he is getting the right amount. Because puppies are roly-poly, you cannot rely on the rib test. If you ever have a concern about how you are doing, please send us a message and we will help you out.