We strongly believe pets deserve the best – especially when it comes to their health. Research constantly shows us and argues that feeding both cats and dogs a raw diet is the healthiest, most nutritious we can provide them. Whether your pet is starting to transition to eating raw food, or you’d simply like to learn more about this diet, we collected a few tips from Healthy Spot’s highly knowledgeable company leaders and employees to help it make it an easier process.
Small Pieces for Quick Defrosting - Andrew Kim, Co-founder of Healthy Spot
As a busy individual who doesn’t always have the time to let his pup’s meal defrost at that exact moment, Andrew chooses to provided his pup a healthy diet the most convenient way possible. Andrew says,, “I personally use Primal Pronto and one of the things I do when I [take] it out, some people let it thaw out; I like running a little bit of warm water over it so it thaws out and then it's also added liquid, so that helps because I’m always in a rush.” Primal Pronto are bite-sized, easy to portion nuggets that thaw out in only minutes! These are great for both busy pet parents, as well as those that want to begin incorporating raw into their pet’s current diet. They’re perfect to transition a pet to raw by adding a couple of pieces to a pet’s regular.. Feeding raw can seem intimidating, but if you follow in Andrew’s paw steps, it’ll be a breeze!
Warming and Cooling Proteins Diet - Mark Boonnark, Co-founder of Healthy Spot
With a pup that has the history of skin issues such as hot spots and allergies, Mark incorporates warming and cooling proteins to Roscoe’s diet. Feeding warming and cooling proteins is a traditional Chinese approach that has been proven to alleviate pet allergies. Mark explains, “If a dog tends to have a lot of skin problems like hot spots and itchiness, it means they are too hot, so you’d want to feed more neutral to cooling meats.” It suggests giving a warming meat to dogs that seek out warm places and are always more relaxed, and giving a colder meat to dogs that are warm to the touch or suffer from allergies. Mark’s dog, Roscoe, suffered from skin allergies, meaning he was hotter than normal, so Mark decided to give him cooling proteins, which really did make a difference to Roscoe. The Yin and the Yang diet is great not only because it balances out temperatures, but also because it rotates proteins, the ideal diet for our pets. Learn more about the different types of cooling and heating meats here.
Rotate Proteins - Cristina Kulkowsky, Retail Operations Manager
With years of experience, Christina is always the go-to person when we have further questions or concerns about our pets. Her tip when feeding raw is to rotate your pet’s proteins. She explains, “The benefit of doing so is [to provide] a full amino acid profile.” For example, she’ll feed her pups chicken one week, beef the next, and so forth. She explains that one protein may have a lot of certain nutrients but lacks in others, and so providing a variety of proteins gives your dog a complete, well-balanced diet. This can also prevent and even alleviate allergies in pets. This is because animals are built to hunt in the wild, meaning they obtain unpredictable sources of protein every meal. They aren’t built to eat the same food, or protein, every single day. Feeding a wide variety of proteins is the best way to prevent food intolerance.
Treats Make for a Great Start - Mark Puranaputra, Director of Retail Operations
A great way to transition your pet to a raw diet is to start off with treats, Mark suggests. Raw treats are a good way to incorporate nutritious calcium and protein into our pet’s diet that’s also excellent for their teeth! Mark explains, “Raw bones give you an opportunity to get all the benefits of raw food over time” In the wild, our pets naturally chew on the bones of their prey after eating the meat. Even though our pets don’t hunt for their food source this way anymore, it’s best to provide them a similar diet for excellent health.
Avoid a mess in the house by simply taking your pet out to the yard to chew on their bone, or start them off on a rug in a bathtub. Over time, your pet will associate the rug with their treat, so when you finally take it out of the bathtub, they’ll know to chew on it there only. Mark also explains that raw treats can become a meal replacement (depending on your pet’s size, age, etc.), so keep an eye out for how many calories your furry friend is intaking. The best way to track this is by letting your pet chew on their bone for some time, then put it in a zip lock bag and pop it back in the freezer until next time’s use. We carry yummy raw treats, such as Primal Marrow Bones and Chicken Necks for your pet to try out now.
Temperatures Matter to Pets Too - Uriel Chavez, Senior Training Manager
As a passionate individual who trains all the Healthy Spot staff, Uriel is extremely educated in pet nutrition. Being on the retail front, Uriel meets and interacts with many people and their pets every single day, and is proud to say he has introduced and converted many to a raw diet. While meeting so many pets with diets spanning far and wide, Uriel noticed the same thing in all pets – animals care about their food’s temperature. Uriel explains, “In the store level, when [we] give pets samples while [the sample] is still cold, some dogs spit it back out. Once the sample warms up in staff’s hands, it gets warmer and mushier and they tend to eat it right up.” For pet owners trying to get their pet to eat raw, he suggests to let the raw food sit in a zip lock bag in warm water for a couple of minutes. This will calm the extreme cold temperature and even bring out the food’s aroma that your pet will be drawn to.
Everybody starts somewhere. Whether it was years, or even months ago, these individuals completely understand the thoughts and concerns one initially has when learning about and considering feeding raw. With this in mind, we came together to provide helpful tips that helped them along the way to make it an easier, less painful process. We hope these tips provide valuable insight about feeding raw, and makes feeding raw food a clean and simple journey for both you and your pet. For more information about raw feeding, please visit our Rawnivore page.