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What is Raw Dog Food?

Raw feeding is the most natural diet for dogs and offers many benefits, but what is raw dog food, exactly? This article explains the elements that make up raw dog food, so you can make the right choice for your dog.

Author: ProDog Raw

What is Raw Dog Food?

What is raw dog food?

Raw meat based food is the healthiest diet for dogs, if this is the first time you have heard of raw, we strongly recommend reading our beginner’s guide.

As the name suggest, raw food involves no cooking, zero added preservatives or fillers, and minimal processing. Raw dog food ingredients include lean meats, offal, bone, healthy raw fats, and some vegetation.

All of these components, when fed in the correct ratios, provide dogs with the required nutrients for their optimal health and wellbeing.

Our pre-prepared raw dog foods suit the needs of every dog, no matter what age or breed.

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What is complete raw dog food?

Complete raw dog food includes some vegetation, omega oils and superfoods alongside the raw meat and animal proteins. These additional ingredients provide essential vitamins and minerals to each meal.

Dogs benefit from seasonal vegetation and berries alongside the animal based ingredients, and often forage these when scavenging in the wild [1].

Complete raw dog food provides a balance of meat proteins, bone, offal, healthy fats, vegetables and berries, with added natural mineral rich superfoods, such as kelp to create a nutritionally well-balanced diet.

A complete raw diet is helpful for busy dog owners, or those who find it tricky to calculate the required ratios of each ingredient.

Our Complete raw dog food range includes a variety of these balanced meals; designed for ultimate ease and convenience, simply defrost, portion and serve.

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What is 80:10:10 raw dog food?

80:10:10 raw dog food is a raw diet that contains only animal products. The numbers explain the percentages of each food source: 80% muscle meats, 10% organ meats, and 10% bone.

ProDog’s 80:10:10 minces are perfect for experienced raw feeders who like choosing their own additions to make their dog’s diet nutritionally balanced and complete.

Our 80:10:10 food range is also ideal for dogs on elimination diets, or those with dietary restrictions as most are single protein meals.

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What is working dog food?

The right diet is crucial for working breeds to help them maintain their energy levels.

Support for endurance, as well as muscle and injury recovery is vital, as they push their bodies to the limit on a regular basis.

A raw diet provides working dogs with high quality raw fats and proteins, to fuel their body effectively.

Raw provides the energy sources and nutrients needed for their bodies to function at such high levels.

Our raw dog food ranges are designed with working dogs in mind and provide many nutritious options for working dogs to perform at their optimum.

Ingredients for raw dog food

Proteins

cubed beef on a chopping boar, high quality meat protein is just one ingredient in raw dog food

Lean meat proteins are the key component in raw dog food. They provide the essential amino acids that dogs need to survive, as well as important vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids.

Proteins fed should be varied as much as possible, to provide the unique nutritional benefit that each meat protein delivers.

For example, beef is higher in zinc and iron than chicken, and turkey provides more vitamin B6, and the calming amino acid, tryptophan, compared to lamb.

Variety is crucial to providing a full range of nutrients. If your dog is sensitive to certain proteins, adjustments can be made utilising other natural ingredients to ensure your dog is receiving the nutrients they need.

Healthy Fats

 

fish oil ingredient in raw dog food

Healthy fats are essential in a dog’s diet. Not only are they a key energy source, but they also encourage cell membranes to function properly, as well as facilitating the absorption of fat soluble vitamins such as vitamin D, E, A and K.

Brain and gut health also function more effectively with quality raw fats and oils, with animal/ fish and plant oils, being recommended for maximum benefits.

Essential fatty acids, especially omega 3 fats, are also important for reducing inflammation and supporting heart, brain and joint health.

Raw bones

Dog teeth cleaning ostrich bone dog dental treat

Bones are an important element of a raw dog food diet, providing essential minerals and especially calcium to dogs.

They support dental health, as well as neuromuscular, cardiovascular, immune and endocrine functions.

The act of chewing raw bones is also hugely beneficial; it helps to further improve dental health and provides important enrichment, as well as physical and mental stimulation.

Offal

What is raw dog food kidney offal image

Offal consists of animal organ meats such as, kidneys, liver, pancreas and spleen.

These contain the most concentrated nutrient profile of all animal products [2], and are often referred to as nature’s vitamin and mineral supplement, find out more in our beginners guide to supplements.

The offal is usually the first part of the animal that wild dogs eat, and is essential for dogs that can tolerate it in their diets.

Fruit

 

raw dog food ingredients raspberries

Certain fruits, like the raspberries and blueberries we use in our food, provide a source of fibre, antioxidants and vitamins to dogs, helping their brains, immune systems, and digestion to function optimally, helping to help your dog avoid constipation and diarrhoea.

See our ‘What Can My Dog Eat’ guide for fruits and vegetables that are helpful additions to your dog’s diet.

Vegetables

 

what is in raw dog food broccoli

Vegetables, such as the broccoli, butternut squash, cabbage, kale and carrots in our food, are a fantastic addition to a raw food diet, provided they are fed in the most digestible way.

Dogs find the cellulose wall of vegetables hard to break down, therefore mincing, blending, or lightly steaming vegetables enables your dog to benefit fully from their many nutrients and antioxidants.

Leafy greens, root vegetables, and more can be added to your dog’s diet for maximum nutritional benefits. Our complete raw dog food range includes various vegetable sources.

Raw dog food explained

Raw meat dog food is the easiest and most effective way to ensure your dog’s nutritional needs are met.

The species-appropriate ingredients, nutrient content, natural enzymes, and minimal processing of raw meat based food mimics what dogs eat in the wild; the diet they’ve thrived on for thousands of years.

If you would like to switch your dog to a raw diet, our switching guide can help. If you are still unsure about raw dog food, read our myth busting article. Our expert feeding advisors are always available to answer questions and provide tailored advice.

Want to learn more?

Our detailed beginners guide to raw dog food explains everything we discussed above in more detail. Including why owners are moving to raw, the benefits and why kibble should be avoided.
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References:

1. Atkinson, R., Macdonald, D.,Kamizola, R. Apr 2002. Dietary opportunism in side-striped jackals Canis adustus Sundevall. Journal of Zoology,; 257(1):129-139. Doi: 10.1017/S0952836902000729

2. Wingett, K., Alders, R. Jan 2023. Distribution of nutrients across the edible components of a modelled typical Australian lamb: A case study. Research Directions: One Health,; 1. Doi: 10.1017/one.2023.1

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