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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-11-2004, 03:48 PM Thread Starter
 
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Opinions on feeding...

I am thinking about feeding Moose a BARF diet. As he has gotten older he has gained weight and I had to switch him from purina dog chow (he never had problems on it but he was getting fat) Now I have been feeding him Iams and he likes the food and has lost a couple of lbs, but his breath is terrible and his fur looks mangy all the time. It never did before.

I tried switching his food to Canidea last summer and he wouldn't touch it. I went back to Iams. I then switched his food to a local brand called DogPower in October and he loved the taste of it but he was itching all time so I slowly switched him back to Iams.

I am at my wits end and I want to try feeding him naturally and see if he doesn't make a vast improvement. He has this behavior that makes me think it may be diet related, he coughs when he wakes up from a nap or in the morning. It's a really horsy cough that ends up sounding like a cat with a hairball. He does this every morning and has since I switched his food from Purina. This is going on 2 years now.

I've told his vet about it and he looks at me like I'm nuts because he must seem healthy. He told me it may be realted to his weight problem but I think he's wrong, but I am not a vet. He wasn't concerned so he didn't test him for anything.

So anyone who feeds their dogs a BARF diet I'd love to hear from you or anyone who tried and hated it. I'd like to know your opinions before I try this.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-11-2004, 04:02 PM
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I dont have my dogs on the BARF diet, because its just too much work for us right now, but I have heard great things about it. If for some reason you end up not feeding BARF, you may want to try Canidae again, its a great food. Really really good for him. Something you can try to get him to eat it, is to put some plain, fat free yogurt on top of it, Harlie, our Boxer, has been extremley picky with food ever since she was a pup, and would sometimes go only eating a few bites a day, when she should have been eating at least 3-5 cups of food a day, I put the yogurt on the food, let it set on the counter for a minute or so, so it would drip into the food...not just on the top, and Harlie ate the whole bowl in less than 10 minutes. She has ate every bowl of food ever since we have put yogurt on it. She thinks her meals are treats now. And thankfully she is finally gaining a little weight!


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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-11-2004, 06:46 PM
 
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I don't feed BARF anymore because we can't afford another freezer and our current one is tiny. I'm not sure if I will feed barf again because there's alot of controversial topics out there about barf and I'm not sure I'm willing to take the small risk. However, when Kai (my 1.5 year old sheltie) was on BARF, he did great. No problems what-so-ever, had a GORGEOUS shiny coat, great breath, great teeth (not a speck of tartar on them) and had great energy levels. He was really thriving on it. Then we got Kaedyn who came to us with gross breath, horrible fur, bad teeth and acted like a senior when in fact, he's only 5..far from being a senior (in this breed anyways). After a couple months, his breath cleared up a bit, his teeth became whiter, his fur was just gorgeous and he acted like a puppy.

Currently, they're off barf because I felt like I wanted to do more research and we're currently feeding Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul. If you're not sure about feeding barf and don't feel like it's the best thing to do, try looking for better foods. Kai is the pickiest dog I've ever seen so after trying lots of human grade feeds, he finally liked chicken soup for the dog lover's soul. We've been feeding it for a little over 4 months and he still gobbles it down which is really unusual for him. I really recommend looking into this kibble if you decide against barf. It has a great taste to it (trust me, I've tried it lol. I have a weird thing where I MUST try their food before they touch it..it's a weird thing I have so I can be sure of their quality).

A book I'd recommend, "Give your dog a bone" by Ian Billinghurst. There's also alot more out there but this one is said to be the bible of barf. A tip, research research research. I researched for months and still didn't feel like I had sufficient info. One more tip, read about the cons of barf as well. It's nice to know the benifits but the cons will help you understand the diet more. There are some risks involved.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-11-2004, 09:30 PM
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I looked into the barf diet before and it looks great but too much work for me!! I don't have enough room for all the preparation!! My dogs get fed on natural diets, just not the barf diet. Nacho used to get dry dog food in the morning but Biscuit has obviously never been bought up on dog food so she refuses to eat it. At the moment she is just getting chiken and rice cause she is sick but when she is better she will get a meaty dog bone in the morning and at night will have a mixture of mince, vegies, rice and some calcium powder added in there too! My mum feeds her dog on this diet (except without the bones) and she lost weight on it cause she wasn't hungry all the time...Nacho gained weight cause it was filling him and he coul actually burn something off. If you are interested I'll right out the recipe properly. My mum lives next door to an ex animal trainer and he only feeds his dog chicken carcasses and other bones.

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-12-2004, 02:19 AM
 
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I have been hearing a lot of people using this lately and many that I know personally have raved about the condition of their dogs. I am just to chicken to try it plus with that amount of food my dogs would probably start fighting. If anything edible takes too much time to eat (example: Jumbo size greenies bully sticks, pigs ears...etc) they will snap at each other. My trainer calls them "trophy" items and that is the only time my dogs will show any aggression towards each other. Eliminating trophies elimanates the problem so I don't think the BARF diet would work at my house.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-12-2004, 03:00 PM
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Dena, I was so surprised to see the same behavior regarding "trophy" items in Jack! He's such a docile Golden but with a Greenie or Pig Ear he actually snarled and snapped at Max. I now step in and make a point to take any special treat away from him - right out of his mouth. I hold it in my hand (while I stand at a right angle toward him in the alpha position) - he gives me cow eyes and does not hold my gaze when I stare him in the eye... then I give it back. I do this repeatedly with both dogs and even with itty bitty Remy now. After thinking about what you wrote I would probably have similar issues with the food items in the BARF diet.

Anyway... I think Alpha Sheltie hit the nail on the head. Do research and find out not just the pros, but the cons too. I don't know much at all about the BARF diet but enough to know that it's way too much work for me. I too had breath, coat and skin issues with my Golden and started to do research on diets. I switched to Wellness and within two weeks he was a different dog. I'd always fed IAMS or Eukanuba but once I switched to Wellness it seemed to totally turn him around. I even feed Wellness or Old Mother Hubbard (same company) treats.
I prefer to trust the "experts" (so to speak) to provide all the balanced nutrition my dogs need. I'd be afraid of not being able to provide this if left on my own. That is just me though. I know that lots of people swear by the diet. By the same token I've also read the opposite. I think there are pros and cons and every dog's make-up and situation is unique. Sometimes it takes trying a few things until you find the right combination that gives you the desired outcome.

Good luck in whatever you decide. Please keep us posted, I'd be really interested in what you discover and how your dog is doing on whatever you switch to.

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-12-2004, 03:55 PM
 
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For those interested in a more natural diet without completely converting to BARF, there are companies that make special diets that are close to BARF.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-12-2004, 05:04 PM
 
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lol you already know I do, my mom will respond to you as soon as she can
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-12-2004, 05:12 PM
 
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Are you talking to me?

If you are...and I guessed right on who you are (Una? and DreamQuestor?)...Hi!! How are you?! I haven't seen you for sooo long!

And if you aren't talking to me, or you aren't Una...can you please identify who you are and who you are talking to?!
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-12-2004, 05:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Candycane
can you please identify who you are and who you are talking to?!
I was thinking the same thing!

Stephanie

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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-12-2004, 06:01 PM
 
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lol I was talking to lvnmycritters she PMed me yesterday about BARF lol and I have no idea who Una is lol but my name is shayna :p
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-12-2004, 06:23 PM
 
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Hehe, okay, you are not who I thought you were. I haven't seen the two I was talking about for ages so I would have been pleasantly surprised.

Nice to meet you though...I am also a Canuck.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-12-2004, 06:28 PM
 
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I feed my golden's the BARF diet & would totally recommend it. Although I must admit it is a LOT of work. Also, I'd have to agree that whatever new diet you choose, you should research it and feel 100% totally comfortable with it...
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-13-2004, 12:48 PM Thread Starter
 
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Hey everyone! Thanks for responding. I am looking into this and as I do in all animal decisions I will research research research!

I want to help Moose get over this coughing thing he does. It scares me that my vet doesn't get to hear it so he isn't concerned but it isn't right to have a nagging morning cough! I mean he's not a smoker (neither are we) so to have this nasty cough makes me worry.

I have found some groups that I can joined to try to get knowledge from personal experience so I shall see how they manage. I don't know if it will work for him or not. he is only one dog so it can't be too hard. And he is only 20lbs to boot so I think it might be a good option. Oh I did learn that they like it to be called RMB diet(Raw Meaty Bones) instead of BARF(Bones And Raw Food) apparently it was a bit of an offensive name!
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