It’s what every Sheltie deserves: Optimal nourishment, and a raw diet is what gets them there. It’s honest, unadulterated, natural meat and bones.
It's much easier than you think. You definitely have it much easier than I did 20 years ago. You can buy meat with ground bone ready to put in a bowl just like traditional kibble, if that makes it easier for you to start.
Interestingly, I read that when a dog is raised on traditional commercial kibble, the stomach acids become weaker and it takes time to build the acidity high enough to digest whole bone easily.
So, I figure, in the beginning, if you want to transition to a raw dog food diet. ground is easier on the digestion.
Other advocates of this diet may disagree.
But I think baby steps are better than no steps, right? Start where you feel comfortable and move slowly if you have to, in order to feed the best dog food.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against commercially prepared raw meals, I just don’t want to pay extra for the prep and packaging they do.
Besides, the teeth stay cleaner on whole pieces of meat and bones.
you get used to ground diet, you can move on to the whole “chunk of
animal with bone”.
Be prepared, though; Your vet however, might feel differently. Many feel owners are unable to feed their dogs without a formula.
My understanding is that vets, like MDs, get very little training in nutrition, so I don’t see them as the authority figures on that subject.
I respect what they know, but when it comes to nutrition, not so much.
Recently the American Veterinary Medical Association released a position paper on raw dog food diets. Not surprising, they are against it. But then, the commercial manufacturers donate money to veterinary causes and education, so it doesn’t surprise me on which side of the fence the AVMA landed.
For those of you looking for a vet who will embrace the natural diet as as the best option, you may find holistic vets are more in sync than the traditionally schooled for that issue as well as a variety of other health issues.
There are some dogs, strange as it may sound, who look aghast at the chicken drumstick or ground veggies the first few times. They are not sure what to do with it. Give them some time to acclimate.
Keep the bone uncooked, unheated, unmicrowaved and all should be just fine. You can juice or puree a bunch of veggies and freeze it for convenience. Vary the type of meat whenever your pocketbook allows. Chicken is cheapest, but “variety is the spice of life.” as my mother used to say.
You can do it.
Your Sheltie needs THE REAL STUFF!!!
There's lots of ways to switch over. Lots of foods you can feed. But I'll show you one method to transition your Sheltie over the course of a few weeks.
This is not the bible on transitioning, just a suggestion:
6 days ground raw meat without the bone (beef, turkey or chicken) You can get this at your grocery store
1 day pureed or juiced veggies (try one veggie per meal. Green beans is a good start, carrots another) mixed with ground meat about half and half.
6 days commercial ground meat and bones dog food.
1 day pureed or juiced veggies (one veggie per meal) mixed with ground meat
1 day whole raw meat with whole bone. (for example chicken thighs)
5 days commercial ground meat and bones
1 day pureed / juiced veggies with or without ground meat.
Increase the number of days with whole meat and bones as you feel comfortable.
1 day pureed / juiced veggies with or without ground meat
Congratulations! Your dog is now enjoying the best dog food ever!
OK, maybe it will take a while to get there. How about sticking with the nice, easy commercial food for a while? There are quite a few out there now to choose from.