Biologically Appropriate Raw Food with Bones. The BARF Diet
There are many versions of the Barf Diet with many different ingredients that some feel are critical and necessary. Our version is based on what a wild animal, wolf, coyote, fox or wild dog would eat. These animals thrive and are much healthier than the domesticated family dog and live longer lives. We try to copy their diet and apply to the feeding of our dogs and puppies.
Dogs have zero use for carbohydrates and need only meat, fat and calcium. Feeding a dog carbohydrates, which they can't ferment and metabolize causes health issues, weak immune system. parasites and results in high poop volume.
All prepared food is fed Raw or dehydated with minimal heat damage. All necessary microbes and digestive enzymes are in the food and naturally occuring thus complete utilization of the food with little waste. This allows for lower food volume, and feeding costs.
Preparing the Barf diet for Shih Tzus and all puppies
Agreatdog grinds meat for the Shih Tzus and blends organ, muscel meat and bones for a complete wholesome base ration.
We use chicken leg quarters with the bone, which has the ideal ratio of muscle meat and bones (calcium). We add chicken gizzards to add needed minerals vitamins, etc. all natural as a wild fox would eat.
We have started using Krill oil as an experiment. Krill oil is high in antioxidants and Omega 3 fatty acids believed to enhance the coat qualities of a dog. The hope is that this may lead to reduced shedding and grooming requirements. Fish oil, sardines can be substituted for this. An occasional egg may also help. (see dangers of feeding too many eggs to a dog). Eggshells are also a valuable addition as this is natural calcium.
Too much calcium will cause constipation, too much protein will cause diarrhea.
Details on the vitamin mineral content, benefits of bone marrow, skin, chicken fat, organ meat, gizzards as well as protein and calcium needs can be found in the Dog Food Nutrition and Barf Diet Tabs. Overall health benefits of this diet is also discussed.
Feeding Chows agreatdog's version of the Barf Diet
We feed a basic chicken leg quarter sprinkled with Quick oats daily as a base diet for our Chows. We supplement Organ meat once a week.
Feeding Organ Meat and preparing treats for dogs
We prepare a grind of organ meat trimmings and dehydrated beef heart tongue and liver to the Chows. The Shih Tzus get the organ meat mixed in their grind, but receive dehydrated beef tongue heart and liver as a daily treat.
Too many dehydrated treats can cause diarrhea as the protein content becomes too high.
We also feed an occasional raw carrot as a chew treat. Excellent for cleaning teeth.
To ensure that all our animals all receive extraordinary care, we are Licensed and Inspected by the Iowa Dept of Agriculture, the American Kennel Club and Fredericksburg Vet Clinic (Supervising Vet).