3 Myths About Raw Dog Food
You want to give your pet the best food possible, but you’re not sure if raw dog food is the answer. The world of raw food can be confusing to many pet owners and Healthy Spot is here to help you navigate it! When fed properly and consistently, raw dog food can lead to amazing health benefits for your pet!
Currently, there are a lot of common misconceptions about raw food, and we are making it our mission to address them all. In these videos, we are confronting and busting the top 3 myths about feeding raw.
Myth Number 1: Raw Pet Food Isn’t Safe!
We constantly hear about pet food recalls in the news, which can be very intimidating. Truth is, all of the raw food brands that we carry are very strict with their food processing – often going above and beyond what they are required to do. To make sure their food is bacteria-free, raw food producers like Primal Pet Foods and Stella & Chewy's use high-pressure pasteurization in state-of-the-art facilities and test every batch to make sure it contains absolutely no bacteria upon shipment.
Primal Pet Foods, for example, uses a process they call Test and Hold. After the food is produced, it is tested by a third-party laboratory to confirm that select pathogenic bacteria are not found. Only when the results are found negative does Primal Pet Foods release the raw food for shipment and distribution. Though this process is not required, it is an example of an extra step taken to ensure the safety and quality of their food. Healthy Spot does extensive research before bringing in any raw pet food to make sure that all products are safe for our four-legged customers.
Even if raw dog food does get recalled, there is almost never a report of a dog or human getting sick – it is the concern that a human might get sick during the handling process. This is why Healthy Spot is a huge advocate of using proper handling techniques. Just like when handling raw meat for humans, it is important to take the necessary steps to guarantee cleanliness. These handling techniques include:
- Freezing your raw dog food as soon as possible after purchasing it.
- Never leaving raw food on the counter for extended periods of time.
- Always washing your hands and surfaces before and after handling raw food for both humans and pets.
- Cleaning your pet’s bowl promptly after each meal.
Learn more about raw food handling techniques here:
Myth Number 2: My Dog Will Get Sick From Raw Food!
Dogs and cats have different and shorter digestive systems than humans – they are able to digest food much quicker than we are. That’s why your pup has to “go” soon after eating. Their shorter digestive systems also mean that food-borne illnesses like Salmonella and E. Coli don’t have time to colonize in their bodies. This fact of anatomy proves that dogs and cats are not able to contract the same food-borne illnesses that humans can.
Additionally, a dog’s stomach is also much more acidic than a human’s. Because dogs and cats evolved eating raw meat, they have a higher level of hydrochloric acid in their stomachs. This allows them to digest meat and bones. The acid in their stomachs allow them to kill bacteria that enters their bodies. As a comparison, dog’s and cat’s stomachs are about 10 times more acidic than a human’s – that’s a lot of acid! More details on the makeup of dog’s and cat’s digestive systems are available here.
To avoid stomach issues when feeding your pet raw food, you should transition your pet to raw food slowly. This process should take one to two weeks. If your pet is used to eating commercial dry food, it may take longer to transition. This is because many dry foods are full of fillers, like unnecessary grains. It may take your dog’s stomach time to adjust their pH levels to accommodate this healthier food. Begin by adding a little bit of the raw food to your pet’s old food. Over time, slowly add more raw food and less of their old food until they have fully transitioned to their new, raw diet!
Myth Number 3: Feeding Raw Takes Too Much Time!
Feeding raw doesn’t have to take more time, just a little more thought and planning! In fact, aside from the initial thawing, raw food is just as easy and convenient as feeding kibble or canned food!
You can thaw raw meat patties in the fridge overnight and feed them to your pet the next morning! If you prefer to meal prep, you can thaw the raw food up to a few days in advance! We suggest storing the thawing dog food in Tupperware containers in your fridge.
If you prefer not to thaw their food overnight or are looking for an even quicker option, you can try using smaller raw pieces, like Primal Pronto! These smaller pieces thaw in just minutes! Just pour it into your pet’s bowl and feed them! With just a little prep time, your pet will benefit from all the amazing properties of the raw diet.
Feeding raw dog food is very easy and safe! Healthy Spot advocates for this type of food because we have seen it work time and time again for numerous pets! Take the first step to joining the Rawnivore Tribe and inquire at your local Healthy Spot about trying raw food today! Feel free to leave any questions in the comments below and we will answer them!
I like to give my dog variety. If we start feeding raw food – do we have to eventually give raw only? Is it harmful to give raw – then dry kibble other times?
could you clarify what the science says on mixing high quality (eg orijen) dry dog food with high quality frozen raw food? thank you
Thank you so much for your question! At Healthy Spot, we believe that some raw is better than no raw! In fact, approximately 68% of our customers who feed frozen raw food mix it with other types of food!
Dry dog food is cooked at much higher temperatures and loses a lot of its nutritional value during this process. It also does not provide the necessary moisture that dogs require for the diet! Adding in the raw will provide these extra nutrients and moisture. I hope this was helpful!
Thank you for your question. Many of our customers tell us that they want to give their dog variety. We think the best way to do this is through mixing up the frozen raw proteins you feed. Each protein source provides different amino acids and nutrients and our pup will appreciate the mix in flavors!
We also understand that sometimes our customers cannot always feed frozen raw for various reasons. Because kibble is much more processed, feeding it to your pup may cause some digestive issues at first. To combat this, you can add a little bit of your dog’s new food to their current food. You can also add Honest Kitchen’s Perfect Form on top (this helps ease pet’s digestive systems!)
I hope this helps!