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How to Feed Raw Dog Food | When & How Often to Feed

If you’re considering switching to raw or have recently started and have questions, you’re in the right place. In this article, Alison Frost, ProDog’s canine nutritionist, explains exactly how to feed raw dog food, including when and how often to feed a dog.

Alison Frost

Author: Alison Frost

Edited By: Anna Bain

How to Feed Raw Dog Food | When & How Often to Feed

How to feed your dog

Feeding dogs should be a stress-free, enjoyable experience. Therefore, your disposition when feeding sets the tone for their ultimate eating experience.

Staying calm, relaxed, and positive allows them to enjoy their food all the more. Facing away but staying in the room will give them confidence and security to delve in and enjoy all the more.

Most dogs prefer to eat off a flat surface, so providing a feeding board rather than a bowl, gives them easy all round vision.

Dogs love to move around their food source too, so placing this away from walls gives them this ability.

If your dog isn’t an enthusiastic eater discover helpful feeding tips from ProDog’s canine behaviourist, Caroline Spencer, in her guide to How to Help a Fussy Dog Eat.

How to feed raw

Raw feeding has never been easier. With our raw dog food meals you can simply defrost overnight, pop into their bowl, and serve! Get defrosting advice here.

Once the food has softened, you can portion out the correct serving size for your dog’s meals.

Any unused food can safely be refrigerated from frozen for up to four days. It’s a convenient and simple way to ensure your dog’s healthy!

Getting the temperature right

All dogs have their unique preferences. Therefore the optimal temperature for their food will vary.

Some dogs may like their food directly from the fridge. Allowing the food to rest out of the fridge for a short time to take the chill off, may be preferable for others.

What to add to raw dog food

Owners that are new to raw feeding often wonder what to add to raw dog food.

With our complete raw meals, your dog is getting all the essential nutrients of a balanced diet, so there’s no need to add anything, unless you want to!

The addition of pasture reared free range eggs, if tolerable, is a great way to boost the bowl economically.

Additionally, if you’re interested in boosting their nutrition even further, you can add one (or multiple) of our dog supplements that suit their particular needs.

Adding our bone broth for dogs can also provide extra nourishment.

Rich in vitamins and minerals, bone broth is particularly helpful for dogs new to raw feeding and those with digestive issues, it can help to aid in digestion, reduce inflammation, and boost hydration [1].

To learn more about which everyday foods are dog-friendly check out our “What Can My Dog Eat” guide.

Try ProDog Supplements

Supplements can be added to raw dog food for an extra nutrient boost.
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Can you cook raw dog food?

I don’t recommend cooking raw dog food for a few reasons.

Firstly, raw dog food is served raw in order to preserve its nutrients, so that they can deliver the maximum nutritional benefits.

The cooking process itself will diminish the nutrient content in the food, making it less beneficial for your dog.

Secondly, any bone content in the food will become sharp and brittle if cooked, presenting a choking hazard and increasing the risk of intestinal injury. Therefore, it’s best to leave it raw.

Deciding where you will feed your dog

Dogs don’t like to feel vulnerable when eating, so their food bowl or board should be somewhere that allows them to use their peripheral vision. No corners, please!

Likewise, if you have other pets or small children, dogs’ food should be inaccessible to them, which helps prevent the development of resource guarding behaviours [2].

Allowing them a quiet, peaceful, safe place to enjoy their meals is best for everyone involved.

How often to feed a dog & what times are best

Many dogs love routine, for these dogs a set time for meals will benefit their wellbeing.

Other adult dogs are happy to have a more flexible schedule, and feeding them within a 2 hour window suits them well.

Benefits of a flexible feeding routine

Feeding this way ensures your life can be more flexible and will minimise your anxieties if you are running late.

Varying routine can also prevent hunger pukes and begging at certain times when you may have more pressing matters to deal with.

Choosing how often to feed your dog

Deciding when to feed your dog depends on whether you feed once or twice a day, and even then, times can vary.

Puppies will obviously need to eat more often depending on their stage of development, so take this into consideration.

Twice-daily fed dogs most commonly eat in the morning and evening, however your schedule can be unique based on what works best for you and your dog.

Once daily feeders can eat in either the morning or evening, though morning is most common.

Essentially, as long as your dog’s meals are spaced out as equally possible between feeding times, they should be fine.

Feeding around exercise time

It’s advised not to feed your dog just before or immediately after exercise, as doing so can increase the chance of digestive issues or worse, ‘bloat’, which is especially common in large, deep chested breeds.

Dogs should be relaxed when they eat, not stressed or with elevated cortisol levels, anxiety is a key reason some dogs are fussy.

Feed your dog the natural way

A common raw dog food myth is that raw feeding is difficult.

The days of ‘DIY’ raw feeding and confusion about correct ingredients, weights, and ratios are a thing of the past for most.

Raw feeding dogs can now be super-convenient and simple when purchasing pre-prepared meals.

Simply place your order, defrost and serve. Feeding your dog in the beneficial way that nature intended couldn’t be easier.

ProDog’s raw food for dogs includes various proteins, formulas, and sizes to suit your dog’s nutritional needs.

We’re happy to help with any queries about ordering, selection, feeding, or shipping. Contact us anytime.

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References:

1. Mar-Solis, L., Soto-Dominguez, A., Rodriguez-Tovar, L., Rodriguez-Rochar, H., Garcia-Garci, A., Aguirre-Arzola, V., Zamora-Avila, D., Garza-Arredondo, A., Castillo-Velasquez, U. Oct 2021. Analysis of the Anti-Inflammatory Capacity of Bone Broth in a Murine Model of Ulcerative Colitis. Medicina,; 57(11)1138. Doi: 10.3390/medicina57111138

2. Karen L. Overall, MA, VMD, PhD, DACVB, CAAB. Resource-guarding: Are veterinarians lost in interspecies translation? Accessed April 2023.
https://www.dvm360.com/view/resource-guarding-are-veterinarians-lost-interspecies-translation

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