Why Feed A Raw Diet?

With all the pet food recalls over the past few years savvy pet owners have been looking for a better way to feed their pets. Most pet owners walk into a store and see pictures of whole grains, prime cuts of meat and human grade vegetables on the bags of food and assume those are the ingredients used in making the food for their beloved pets.

The truth is, what is being used to make processed pet foods is not the whole chickens, turkeys and choice cuts of beef or lamb that we see on the bags, but instead, the heads, feet, feathers and intestines of the chickens and turkeys as well as the brains, tongues, esophagi and fetal tissue of the cows and sheep. When feeding most dry foods to our pets, who are dying of cancer at an early age in increasingly large numbers, we are actually feeding them food made from diseased and cancerous meat! Even the grains used have been deemed unfit for human consumption because of mold and other contaminants, which is obvious from the fact that most pet food recalls are the result of toxic grain products. In addition, because the foods are processed, if there were actually any vitamins, minerals, enzymes, amino and/or fatty acids in the food's ingredients, the heat used to process the food would destroy them.

We know that dogs and cats are carnivores - meat eaters. That means their teeth and digestive tracts are optimized to eat meat. Raw diets are designed to duplicate the diet they were intended to eat: meat, uncooked bone, organs, and pulverized vegetation. Because humans, who are not carnivores, can get sick from raw meat, people often think it cannot be safe for their pets. Nothing could be further from the truth. Here are some of benefits our customers have found from feeding the raw diets we carry:

  • Healthier Skin and Coat
  • Cleaner teeth and fresh breath
  • Reduced allergy symptoms
  • Increased Energy and Stamina
  • Better Weight Control
  • Improved Digestion
  • Less smelly and smaller stools
  • Increased Mobility In Older Dogs
  • Less Need For Veterinary Dental Work

If you would like to start your pet on a raw diet, we would be more than happy to answer any questions you may have. Below are the most common questions we are asked, but if you have others please give us a call - we would be happy to talk to you!

Why Did You Start Feeding Raw?

In 1999 Flyer, one of our golden retrievers, was a bit over weight. After many months of trying to get weight off of her without success it was recommended that we try feeding a raw diet. We took her to the vet to rule out any medical problem, tried different brands of kibble, greatly reduced the volume she was eating, and increased her exercise significantly, yet she still had not lost weight. After doing some research we decided to give raw feeding a try. Not having the time, nor feeling knowledgeable enough to make the diet ourselves, we were looking for a high-quality frozen product. Since there was no local source, we ordered the food online and had it shipped. After one month we saw that the advantages to feeding raw went well beyond weight control, and others saw it too, asking where they could buy the food. Since shipping frozen food was expensive, we invested in a large freezer and soon became the first company on Long Island to sell raw pet diets. 16 years and nine freezers later we are proud to offer some of the finest raw diets on the market today.

How Can I Make The Switch To Raw?

Some pets have no problem literally switching to totally raw in one meal. Others have more sensitive stomachs and do better switching gradually. As a rule of thumb we suggest using the following food percentages to gradually switch their diet from their current food to raw.

How Much Should I Feed?

To figure out how much you should be feeding your pet, you can calculate it by using the chart below. Multiply your dog's current weight, or what you want your dog to weigh, by the appropriate percentage and that would be your dog's daily amount of food.

Which Protein Source Should I Feed?

We all know that eating the same food every day is not good for our health. The same is true for our dogs. We recommend that you rotate your dog's protein sources throughout the month. Most customers switch protein sources each time they thaw a new roll of food. Although most customers primarily feed chicken, turkey, beef and/or lamb, we also recommend adding to their monthly diet an occasional roll of salmon, buffalo, venison, duck and/or rabbit, not only for variety, but for the nutrients found in those foods.

What About Supplements?

Current research has convinced us that for optimal health we should add a high-quality vitamin/mineral supplement, probiotic and wild salmon oil to our pet's diet. We recommend these supplements for all pets, whether being fed raw, dry or canned foods. For more information about supplements click here.

What Does It Cost?

When calculating the cost of feeding raw there are many factors that enter into the equation. It goes far beyond the cost of kibble versus the cost of the raw food. Over the life of your dog, when you factor in the long-term health benefits, it actually costs less to feed raw than to feed processed foods.

But the reality is, we all need to know if feeding raw will fit into our monthly budget. Here is an example of how to calculate the monthly cost of feeding BRAVO! Chicken Blend to a 50-pound dog who is in good weight: 50 x .02 = 1 pound x 30 days = 30 pounds of food. Using our price list you would then go to the Chicken Blend under BRAVO! Blends, pick either the 2- or 5-pound price and multiply that number by either 15 or 6, respectively, and that would give you the monthly cost for the food. When deciding on which size you would order, remember that thawed food will stay fresh in an air-tight container in your refrigerator for 3-5 days.

Safe Handling

For your protection, please follow these instructions when handling raw diets:

  • Keep frozen until ready to use.
  • Place thawing food on a plate or in a container so defrosting meat and juices do not leak onto the counter or refrigerator shelves.
  • Wash all surfaces and objects that come in contact with the food, including your hands, with hot soapy water.
  • Refrigerate leftovers immediately.

Still not convinced that a raw diet is right for you? Still want to avoid feeding processed dog foods? Consider feeding a dehydrated food instead - all the benefits of raw without the freezer. We highly recommend Vital Essentials.