The raw food diet is a relatively new concept for family dogs. (I say relative, since 1993 is longer ago than I’d like to admit, but still not that far in the grand scheme of things.) Australian veterinarian Ian Billinghurst first introduced the idea back then. He called his feeding suggestions the B.A.R.F. diet, an acronym that stands for Bones and Raw Food, or Biologically Appropriate Raw Food.
It is not a widely accepted yet, in fact many veterinarians are against it, believing the risks outweigh the benefits.
Nonetheless the raw food diet continues to gain momentum.
Raw diet believers tend to believe it is more natural for their dog to eat raw meats and foods than processed dog food. They’re eating the food their hunting ancestors would have eaten.
Here are 7 things to know about the raw diet trend:
The raw food diet consists of muscle meat often still connected to bone, bones (whole or ground), organ meats, raw eggs, veggies, fruit, some types of dairy.
Benefits may include: a shinier coat, healthier skin, smaller stools, cleaner teeth, and high energy levels.
Choking, broken teeth, internal injuries caused by bones. A huge risk is that bacteria from raw food are a threat to both the human handling the food and dog eating the food.
The FDA does not recommend feeding your dog a raw food diet.
THOUROUGHLY wash your hands after handling raw food and THOUROUGHLY clean and disinfect any surface area touched during preparation. DO NOT let your dog lick your hands or face after eating.
When it comes to bones, take “sensible precautions, like always supervising your pet when she has a raw bone, weaning her/him onto raw bones, removing the bone when the pieces are broken off or it gets too small, and discontinuing raw bones if your pet has weak or fractured teeth”
Make sure your dog’s diet remains balanced.
That’s is entirely up to you. I am not an expert AT ALL. Please do your research. If you think it is the right call, then start. If you’d rather stick with kibble, by all means, do that.
We considered a raw diet for our dog but decided to stay the course instead.