Can I Mix Dry Food With Raw Dog Food or Wet Dog Food?


by ProDog Raw

In short there is only one answer and that is that you should never feed dogs a mix of raw dog food and dry food.

In fact, if you were going to liken it to mixing human foods together in the same manner, it would be like putting a salad on a pizza. The two just don’t complement each other. In addition to this, mixing dry with raw is not good for dogs. The absolute best nutrition that you can give them is a biologically appropriate raw food (BARF) diet mixed with some natural supplements.

Let’s take a look at why:

The Normal Behaviour of Dogs in the Wild

Over a period of time, dogs have become domesticated and cross bred to produce extensive breeds, large and small across the world. Despite this they still have the same anatomy as their ancestors with digestive systems that are built to consume and digest raw meat. Imagine a dog in the wild; they live off what they hunt and kill. They are hunter gatherers and will go out and find their food. They don’t have the opportunity to take it home, prep, season, cook and garnish it! They simply use what nature gave them to kill and eat the raw meat of their small animal prey and the stomach contents. As the animals that they catch are often herbivores, this is likely to be green matter such as grass and plants.

Dry Food is Not What Nature Intended for Dogs

Unfortunately, dog food manufacturers have developed wet and dry recipes which are heavily processed, with many additives, to enhance the taste and make your dog want more. These foods may claim to contain meats like chicken, beef, duck and salmon but often in very small quantities, as little as 5%. The remaining elements are things that you wouldn’t dream of giving your beloved dog such as MSG (listed as hydrolysed protein), table salt, table sugar, sweet tasting propylene glycol (a derivative of antifreeze) and other spices/chemicals. In addition to this, the food you buy one month could be completely different to the same bought a month later. Processed dog foods aren’t always consistent with the components that they contain.

A Raw Diet is Best for Dogs

By contrast, a BARF diet is designed to give a dog exactly what they need. There are a few variations of raw diets which range from pure meat recipes to complete meat and vegetable mixes but these meals contain only pure ingredients, that you would find in nature, with no waste products added. A great by-product of this nutritionally balanced food means that less waste going in equals less coming out. That isn’t the only benefit though. Dog owners who feed raw food report extensive benefits including an increase in energy, a vitality in both appearance and behaviour, great skin and coat condition, better breath and less visits to the vets. Not only do you have a perfectly happy and healthy dog when feeding them raw, it also saves you money in vet bills.

Why You Must Not Mix Dry Food with Raw

There is absolutely no need to mix the two diets together. They get everything they need from a BARF raw diet. Many dog owners have the misconception that mixing foods will help to give them the valuable nutrients that they need or that it will bulk out their food. It will in fact have an adverse effect and could potentially make your dog very unwell.

The process required to cope with the digestion of kibble is completely different to that required to break down raw. Kibble contains a large amount of starch which increases the PH of the stomach. In order to break down the protein in raw food, this level needs to be below a certain level. If you mix foods you send the digestive system into confusion which can lead to an unhappy and unwell dog. Increasing the PH of the stomach means that bacteria like E coli and salmonella are more likely to survive. The dog’s PH level needs to be acidic to protect them from these bacteria and also to break down the chicken bone in their raw meals.

Making the Transition to Raw

When making the transition from dry to a raw food diet, some people prefer to make the change gradually. This is the only instance in which mixing the two should be considered and then only for a short amount of time as it is prudent, once commenced, to switch to raw as quickly as possible. For some it can be a few days although for others it may take a few weeks. Some people will reduce the kibble and increase the raw at each meal time until the dog is only eating raw food while others, with a puppy or a dog with a robust digestive system, can make the rapid switch with the introduction of just the one food immediately.

In summary, mixing dry and raw foods together should be avoided unless switching from a dry to a raw food diet. If you are considering the switch and would like some help and advice then please do get in touch. We can advise you on what is best for your dog, what you should be feeding, how often and when as well as answering any questions you may have about a BARF diet. You can also take a look at our list of pure and complete raw meals here.


11 responses to “Can I Mix Dry Food With Raw Dog Food or Wet Dog Food?”

  1. Gwenda says:

    I have started feeding my three large working labs on raw food at night mixed with sweet potato, carrot and potato.
    I give them dry food in the morning. Everything seems to be great with all three but Ive now been told that I should not feed dry food at all.
    I am unsure how much raw food they would need to be able to be sure there are having enough. My dogs are 19 months 28 kg, 3.5 years, 29 kg and 5.5 years 27 kgs.

  2. Laura says:

    Ive just got Raw meat for my dogs to try but reading comments its bad for dogs makes them ill is that right as i thought was good for them am unsure wot to do now as my dogs seam to love it

    • ProDog says:

      Hi there Laura
      Raw food is exactly what nature intended for dogs. It has everything they need nutritionally. If you feed them a complete raw food like ProDog and you follow our advice on making the transition then you should have no problems. We are happy to answer any questions you might have but this is worth a read –

  3. Elise says:

    One or our dogs is on tablets, he is on a fully raw diet and we usually put the tablets in his raw food however on this occasion they fell out and he didn’t eat them so I grabbed not even a hand full of biscuits and put them with his tablets so he ate them. My girlfriend’s dad then had ago at me for giving them to him. I do understand that they digest at different rates but I didn’t think a tiny amount would be bad. So my question is… Did I do the wrong thing will it have an affect? Or will it be okay because it’s just a one off occasion?

    • ProDog says:

      Hi there, on this occasion it should be OK as a one off. He will probably just be windy and have a slushy stool

  4. arrison11 says:

    Hi ProDog, I have a 4 month old Frenchie who is on 50/50 Wainwright wet and dry with some added cooked chicken. She developed itchy skin so I stopped the chicken, i believe the itching could be from her vacinations because it started after her injection. I have been looking at raw diet and spoke to my vet about this and she cringed. When asked why she said because it has to be done right for your dog to get a healthy balanced diet. If I order food from you can it be collected or does it have to be delivered. I also have 3 Boston Terriers who are 10, 11 and 12 years old, do you think it’s to late to change them on to raw.

    • ProDog says:

      Our complete meals are balanced and complete, so that takes the worry out for you.

      If you want to trial, we have trial sample packs, just select chicken as the allergy, and we will send all meals without chicken in for you to try her on.

      Just select the adult meals as our puppy meals are heavy on chicken, and not a huge amount of difference.

      ​Its never too late to transition dogs of any age, its just that they made need a slower transition than younger dogs if they have a delicate tummy.

      Where abouts do you live ? We do a collection point from either Hull or Weston currently.

      Or was can deliver, and all our bundles include free delivery.

  5. Melo says:

    My dog has a very sensitive stomach and we have searched to find foods that do not mess with her stomach. She currently eats 250g of natural dry food in the morning, 150g of raw chicken mince and 60g or raw veg in the evening. It seems to be the only way we can get her belly to handle the raw food. As without any dry food in her diet she has very runny loose stools and sometimes vomiting. Is the diet I now have her on ok and does anyone have any suggestions. She is a mix of 3 bully breeds, mum is a full America hill, dad is a mix of English bull and boxer. I am wondering if this is what makes her belly so sensitive. Pet shops seem to have lack of knowledge and the vet says to keep her on the diet that she is comfortable with.

    • ProDog says:

      Hi there
      Sorry to hear about your girl having tummy issues. It could be a number of things causing these issues. Food intolerances, digestive issue, parasites etc, so without veterinary tests and diagnosis, it is difficult to advise what could be the cause.

      Is she on any digestive support ? Enzymes, probiotics, digestive herbs such as slippery elm ?

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