FAQ's

FAQ's

Q: My dog has bad allergies. Can raw dog food help?

A. There are two different types of allergies: environmental and food-related. Environmental allergies come and go. If you're living in Hawaiʻi, then you know someone allergic to VOG. The symptoms come when the vog comes and will disappear when you go into an air conditioned room or the winds shift. Food related allergies surface when we or our dogs eat something to which they are allergic. That being said, lamb, chicken, venison and beef are some of the most hypoallergenic foods on the planet UNLESS those animals eat a corn based diet. If they do, they become highly allergenic.

Q: How much do I feed my dog?

A. Our foods are hand-made into 8 ounce patties and small nuggets. For a 40 pound dog, you would feed one patty (or one cup) of food per day. For a 80 pound dog, you would feed two patties, (or two cups) of food per day.

 

Small dogs will eat less. For a 10 pound dog you would feed 1/4 of a patty (or a little over 1/4 cup per day of nuggets).

Q: I switched my dog's food. Now he/she has diarrhea/is constipated. What should I do?

A. When switching a dog's food, diarrhea or constipation can occur. Skipping a meal before switching can help prevent this. If your dog is constipated you can either add a bit more food or add a little water to the food. Your dog has to get used to any new food and can have these symptoms whenever you switch their diet. Diarrhea should go away by itself. You can help by either: skipping a meal and reintroducing food, make sure you're not giving your dog any treats containing starches, or add canned, unsweetened pumpkin to the food for a day or two. A tablespoon or two for a couple of days generally gets everything back to normal.
Q: Is my dog really allergic to Chicken or Beef?
A. One thing that surprised me when I started feeding raw was that proteins, in and of themselves, are hypoallergenic. This means that they are considered non-allergens. I learned this because I had the same belief and my vet's allergy test confirmed it. What we have found is that because our organic chickens are corn and soy free and our beef ranchers grass feed and finish their cows allergies very rarely, if ever, exist. We offer 100% money back guarantees because we are so confident that your dog is not allergic to either protein. We also carry a wild venison blend as well, although my dog eats our chicken blend about 75% of the time.
Q: Is raw food OK for my (puppy, older dog, etc.)?
A. If you think like a dog mom in the wild, there is no grocery store to go get kibble. So as soon as puppies are weaned, they start eating what the pack eats. If a puppy is freshly weaned, we recommend feeding green tripe until they are about 9 weeks old. Older dogs eat what they’ve eaten all their lives, which is a whole-prey food. Imagine a wild dog finding a chicken. Then imagine small pile of feathers; the dog ate the rest.
Organ meat, bone marrow, muscle tissue and especially the stomach are all eaten. The stomach contains probiotics, digestive enzymes, and in the case of grass-eating animals (ruminants), chlorophyll. All dogs have very acidic stomachs so they can actually chemically break down bones. Salmonella and E. Coli don’t stand a chance. There are bacteria on everything and evolution has given dogs bulletproof-like resistances. Raw food made of USDA, human-grade ingredients in a certified people kitchen (like ours) is as good as or better than what you would find in a restaurant. So for puppies and seniors alike, it’s just like nature intended for them, but a bit better.
Q: Can I feed my dog raw food one week and alternate with kibble every other week?
A. If you plan to do this, I would advise you not to switch to raw food. That's like me eating organic and healthy for a week then switching to fast food and sweets for a week. My digestive system would be so messed up that I would spend a lot of time in the bathroom or at my doctor's office. Basically, switching diets back and forth isn't a dog. If you are going to feed raw, do it all the time; otherwise, please don't start.
Q: I can't afford to feed raw food. It seems so expensive.
A. Just like humans, this is a pay for it now or pay for it later discussion. If I ate junk food a lot, even organic foods filled with organic sugar or honey, I would gain weight, suffer tooth decay, likely get high blood pressure and be at risk of diabetes. Not immediately, but it would eventually catch up to me. When it does, you can't turn back the clock. Medical bills, kidney and liver disease, poor skin, the need for prescription drugs, effects of improper nutrition and root canals are going to be something I deal with rather than avoid.You can actually put a price on health for you as well as your dog. Think of all the money you've spent so far trying to get rid of shedding, dog stink, ear infections, rashes, hot spots or paw licking by using antibiotics, anti-fungal medicines, steroids, blood tests, allergy tests, special shampoos, excessive grooming, expensive kibble and prescription foods. It's ridiculous!
Q: Are raw bones safe for my dog?
A. Just like humans, this is a pay for it now or pay for it later discussion. If I ate junk food a lot, even organic foods filled with organic sugar or honey, I would gain weight, suffer tooth decay, likely get high blood pressure and be at risk of diabetes. Not immediately, but it would eventually catch up to me. When it does, you can't turn back the clock. Medical bills, kidney and liver disease, poor skin, the need for prescription drugs, effects of improper nutrition and root canals are going to be something I deal with rather than avoid.You can actually put a price on health for you as well as your dog. Think of all the money you've spent so far trying to get rid of shedding, dog stink, ear infections, rashes, hot spots or paw licking by using antibiotics, anti-fungal medicines, steroids, blood tests, allergy tests, special shampoos, excessive grooming, expensive kibble and prescription foods. It's ridiculous!
Q: My dogs like treats. What can I give them?
A. So, regarding treats, anything that is baked, such as a cookie, contains starch. Dogs can't digest it; therefore, the allergy symptoms can continue from a couple of cookies a week. Some dogs are much more sensitive than others, so the answer really depends on your dog and how quickly the allergy symptoms go away and if they stay away. You are much better off with a piece of lunch meat as a treat than any type of dry treat. What I recommend people do is go through the list of ingredients and avoid anything that has something with flour or a noticeable starch included. Other things to be cautious about are tapioca powder, which is a common starch that sounds great to humans but is actually just as bad as corn, wheat or rice would be in dog food. The other three things that I absolutely recommend staying away from in any food and treats are BHA, BHT, and propylene glycol. These are additives that prevent fats from going rancid. BHA and BHT are known carcinogens and propylene glycol is anti-freeze that is used to de-ice aircraft wings in the winter. Inclusion of either doesn't make for very appealing dog treats, in my opinion. We make dehydrated beef liver treats that dogs love. Treats containing one or two ingredients that are animal protein-based, I would approve of feeding.
Q: My dog drinks less water. Is that normal on a raw diet?
A. Totally normal. Raw dog foods are quite a bit higher in moisture content than dry foods. One of the things that you will notice is dogs consuming a raw diet drink less water. I recommend pouring a bit of the juice in with the cube and allowing the dog to consume both. The liquid is the natural juice that comes from the animal's protein. Although we do strain some of the liquid out, because we grind at such low temperatures it's not possible for us to completely drain it nor would we if we could.
Q: My vet says raw isn't safe. Is that true?
A. Our philosophy is never to question or criticize someone's comments; particularly a vet. After years of doing this, We hear of a lot of misinformation about raw feeding and what separates fact from fiction. We will try to clear that up here.

 

Here is a typical example of a veterinarian's curriculum https://cvm.msu.edu/student-information/dvm-program-admissions/curriculum This is from Michigan State although most schools are similar. If you search the curriculum for nutrition, you'll find it in the title of two courses; VM514 Comparative Life State Nutrition and LCS645* Ruminant Nutrition Clerkship. LSC645 is an elective course while VM514 is a one semester hour course in the vet's freshman year. Elective courses are chosen based on the interest of the vet candidate. If he or she isn't planning on working with cows or goats, they aren't going to take a course on ruminants. They opt for a more interesting course like cardiology or ophthalmology. The VM514 course is a broad overview of different types of species' nutrition that a vet MAY be exposed. This is hardly an all-inclusive education of nutrition and especially not dogs and cats. As a side note, doctors only receive one, three semester hour course in their freshman year on nutrition. Again, hardly enough to create a deep educational foundation. What I generally find is that vets simply don't know anything about animal nutrition. What they do learn is guided by the dog food company that has food in the vet's practice waiting area. And kibble companies are NOT advocates of raw. Why? We advocate and practice canine healthcare while vets practice animal sickcare. This, unfortunately, is a huge differentiator.

 

Peer review research suggests that a person is 15 times more likely to contact salmonella or E. coli from dry food rather than raw. Think about it for a second. After someone scoops dry food out of a bag do they wash their hands? Or if the dog drops it on the floor, would we treat it the same as raw beef? The issue here is we are so accustomed to assuming something in a bag from a big company is safe because everyone uses it. Surely they have safety controls in place. I have also found that not to be the case. Their chicken and beef come from feed lots where they spend their entire lives sitting or walking in animal feces. Dust from that feces will get kicked up and all the chickens and cows breathe it. If salmonella exists, it spreads quickly. Compare that to grass-fed, free range cows that eat grass all day instead of eating corn treated with antibiotics and you begin to see the difference animal welfare is to the safety process. Feedlot beef is cheap. Grass-fed beef isn't. Just look in the store at price differences between free roaming, pasture raised organic chicken and Purdue or Family Pride or the store's ground beef compared to grass-fed beef.

 

Here are some articles and videos that will address your concerns (and the information is probably overkill). Doctor Karen Becker is highly regarded in the areas of animal nutrition and raw pet foods.

 

http://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2013/04/01/raw-food-diet-part-1.aspx

 

http://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2013/04/08/raw-food-diet-part-2.aspx

 

http://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2014/01/24/raw-pet-food-diet.aspx

 

In addition to this, Raw Dog Hawaii tests every batch we produce for salmonella and E. coli. We do this for human safety rather than a dog's safety, because a dog's systems are designed to combat both these pathogens (we're still protecting your dog though ;). We also only use USDA, human-grade ingredients.

 

This is the chicken we use: http://www.maryschickens.com/cabronze.htm This is the chicken Whole Foods sells: http://www.maryschickens.com/organicchicken.htm

 

Same farm, but ours is a higher grade and with a higher humanely raised rating than what you are able to get at Whole Foods. Our beef comes from Maui Cattle Company: http://www.mauicattlecompany.com/?page_id=11

 

So, the cost of our foods are higher than other raw foods on the market; although we are less expensive than Primal Raw. We do this for the exact reasons and concerns heard from vets, however because your vet isn't trained and has little to no knowledge of our food quality I would have to say their concerns are unfounded in the reality of raw dog foods on the market today.