im at that point where im just tired of spending so much money on buying dog food every month and switching brands because the prices keep going up and down. he was on natures prairie, which he does fantastic on it! his coat is just beautiful. problem is its expensive. so i want to save money and just make my own.

i will not due raw. i will cook it but i am just wondering how much is it, say per month to make? what recipe do u use? how much should i make? if u make a giant pot how long does it last? how much to feed? things like that.  any info on this would be great :)

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I think it's always a good thing to step back every now and then and see what food options are available. It never hurts to research and see how things have changed every few years. 

I tried the raw food diet for a while and that didn't save money. It was interesting to watch Charlie crunch into a raw chicken though.. hoooboy!

I also tried making our food at home and that also didn't save money after having to add extras and vitamins to make it cover all the grounds... 

So now we're back on our Wellness brand. Every Sunday they get a raw egg mixed in and they get treats throughout the week ranging from healthy carrots to not so healthy pancakes hahah (they split one when we have our own.. they dont get a giant plate each btw ;) )

This is an interesting read and addresses the fears of salmonella and other issues that remind us that no matter how much time our dogs spend with us, they are not humans

http://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2014/11/07...

About the salmonella issue, it would be a good idea to talk with someone who has taken a two-semester course in microbiology before taking the word of someone who has something to sell. A good RN could explain the issue, and an honest holistic veterinarian could explain why salmonella doesn't necessarily make a dog sick but could make its human very sick, indeed. Don't believe someone (me included) writing on some web page; ask an expert who doesn't have any ax to grind.

Good point, but since I didn't have any interviews with RNs talking to veterinarians, I couldn't post links to those lol--if I did, I would.   If it helps with anyone's decision making, my own vet supports raw feeding, and my OH holds a chemistry degree--he's taken microbiology, and organic and inorganic and done some research on food science.  

The food debate is one that comes up again and again and it seems to be such an oddly emotional topic.  I can never understand the firmly held belief that dogs (and cats) have somehow evolved to eat kibble out of a bag because they've lived near people for 1000s of years and we started feeding them kibble in the last 100 of those years.   This completely flies in the face of evolutionary theory.   Further, the short intestinal track of carnivores means they digest and process food far differently than omnivores like humans.  No amount of living with another species is going to change that, no more than cows have evolved through proximity to suddenly become omnivores.  

I like to feed my dogs a variety of things--one maybe from a certain degree of anthropomorphism, thinking that they will get bored if I don't switch it up.   This theory is also supported by the cats, who will treat something that was clearly delicious at breakfast as pure poison at dinner time.  And our beagle x lab also is a picky eater who will demand hand feeding if she's bored with her food.   I also think that changing things up means they end up with a fully balanced diet over all.   They have different protein sources, different enzymes, etc.   So, we rotate through minced/cubed raw chicken with giblets, minced/cubed pork, the occasional Freshpet nuggets or tube because they really really love it.  In non-snowy weather, I get a mince from the butcher (who lives way out in the country down a dirt road) that includes offal and off cuts from beef, pork, and sometimes venison/lamb/rabbit.  

The one fairly constant element is Honest Kitchen.   I add the base mixes to the meat, so they get the recommended 20% of diet to be veg sources, and supplements that I don't typically add.   And they rotate through the chicken, turkey, and beef flavors.   The really nice thing about The Honest Kitchen is that not only is it nearly as easy to make as kibble, but it's a nice compromise for people who are afraid to feed raw.    It's dehydrated and the low heating temp means it's not completely raw--in fact, it's safe for people to consume.  But it's also so minimally processed that those of us who feel that raw is best aren't disappointed in failing to feed it properly.    It costs anywhere from $55-$110 for a 10lb box, but that box makes 40lbs of food, so when I was doing cost analysis on switching from kibble, I realized I was spending $50-60 for a 40lb bag of good quality kibble.  Suddenly, THK doesn't seem so expensive.  And I have noticed such a difference in my dogs since I've switched their diets.   They don't shed as much.  Ragnar, who we assumed just had a coarse coat, now has a soft silky one.  Their teeth are good, they don't have dog breath.  They have tons of energy.  Their poops are smaller and stink less.   The vet is very happy with their weights and muscle tone. 

On a side note, my first corgi struggled with his weight all his life--he was on good kibble and we tried all the diets everyone talks about on here.  Nothing helped.  He got bigger if anything.   I can't help but wonder if things might have been different if he had just not eaten kibble.   Kelso went through a chunkier phase, and that was when they all still ate kibble. Now, he's lean and muscular.   I never struggle with worrying about their weight.  

Yup. I find it hard to believe that raw food is going to harm your dog very much.

If it is true that salmonella can be transferred to humans through contact with the dog's fur (which becomes contaminated when the pooch excretes and when he/she licks his/her fur) (don't you hate PC?), then...well that gives me the heebie jeebies. I may be extreme, having grown up in a Third-World country (oh, what the heck: make that "Fourth-World") where I saw and experienced the effects that innocence about sanitation and germ theory wrought among the locals and among the Americans who lived there.

That experience may have made me hypervigilant about hygiene and sanitation -- I wouldn't eat raw meat myself, nor would I feed it to an animal that shares my home, my dishes, and my bed. But it's different strokes for different folks! If you're comfortable with it, the positive effects you report probably aren't coincidental.

For what it's worth, I had the same positive results when I started feeding my GerShep and greyhound cooked meat with a few veggies and starches tossed in. IMHO, the trick is taking the dog off commercial kibble and canned food...but again, that is strictly MY "HO" and may not hold water elsewhere. Real food appears to be better for dogs than fake food, just as real food is better than highly processed food for humans. Anecdotally speaking. ;-)

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