Cooked Dog Food vs Raw Dog Food vs Kibble
When is the last time you saw a dog catch a rabbit only to bring it home and stick it in the oven to cook?
Or carefully debone the chicken before cutting it by paw and gently simmering (up to at least 60 degrees celsius internally) on the stove top?
Sounds ridiculous doesn't it? How does your dog even light the gas burners?
Cooking your dog’s dinner is not just unnecessary, it’s plain destructive. And I’m not actually being melodramatic here, it’s true!
Cooked bones, for example, can be dangerous to your dog by splintering and causing internal injuries. Instead always feed a raw bone it’s safer and they’ll love it!
Cooking food actually changes the nutritional composition and generally not for the better.
There are a couple of cooked dog food exceptions i’ll talk about in a minute, but by and large, the closer to its original form, the healthier a food tends to be.
Kibble Can’t be Called Real Food
If you take food processing to the extreme (not just gently cooked diets), you wind up with a dog pet food substitute like kibble.
I call the stuff a food substitute because by the time the manufacturing process has been mashed, extruded, boiled, heated and dried whatever ingredients it might have started with, so much quality and nutrition has been lost that the next step is to add back in artificial flavours, colours, preservatives, additives and supplements (both mineral and vitamin).
The whole mess is stirred up, shaped into appealing little dog bones or fake bacon shapes to appease the humans and then nearly-incinerated in the drying process.
If the original ingredients were top quality, organic, whole foods... you know, the real stuff, there may be some kind of justification for finding a super-convenient way to package them, but that’s usually not the case either. Add to that the fact that kibble is often laden with corn and other grain products used as fillers and you wind up with a product that really isn’t good for your dogs health.
In fact someone, somewhere at some point in time referred to Kibble as "The McDonalds of the dog food world". Imagine eating that shit day in day out. How healthy do you think you would be and for how long?
Real, Whole Raw Dog Food For Optimal Nutrition
Raw dog food or biologically appropriate raw food (BARF), on the other hand, uses fresh, whole foods that are as close as possible to their original form.
Generally, the nutritional content is less compromised and more bioavailable than if food is cooked.
Yes, raw is good, but I do want to say that not all raw dog food diets are created equal.
There are some backyard operators who are jumping on the raw dog food bandwagon and not producing well-researched, complete and well-balanced food for dogs.
It’s up to you to do your homework and find out exactly what goes into the raw food diet you’re feeding your canine buddy and whether or not what you are actually feeding meets minimum quality and decency standards.
Rawmate Uses Top Quality Ingredients
Here's a hint. Rawmate contains ZERO (formerly) sick, dead or injured animals unlike many of our competitors. I'll write a future article on this, but as consumers don't write me off as hyping this up.
Seriously. Demand to know exactly where your produce is coming from. They likely won't openly share where they source their ingredients from and you sort of can't blame them. It would be embarrassing to have to explain the horse DNA that existed in the beef mince we recently tested.
I’ll tell you what we do at Rawmate.
First, we use fresh, human grade, top quality ingredients. That includes organically-produced animal protein products, ethically raised right here in Australia.
We make sure to balance muscle, organ meats and offal (including tripe) and provide some raw, meaty bones for your dog to gnaw (great for their teeth!).
We include some vegetables because we’ve found that foods like carrots are a great natural, whole food source of Vitamin A.
Check out our post Your Dog Is NOT a Vegan to get an understanding of the fruits and vegetables that we use in our Rawmate pet dinners.
We’d rather provide vitamins naturally than by using artificial supplements of which the absorption and bio-availability is truly questionable.
Our One Exception
Here’s the exception to our raw-only rule - it turns out that dogs don’t digest raw carrots (or pumpkin) very well.
By lightly cooking our carrots, sweet potato and pumpkin, we help make the nutrients more bio-available and easily digestible so that the vitamins and minerals they contain can be absorbed and processed optimally by a dog’s digestive system.
In short - Feed your dog raw carrot and you'll have raw carrot through your dogs poop.
Feed your dog lightly cooked carrot and your dog will absorb the carotene and other goodness the carrot has to offer without carroty chucks at poo time.
It Doesn’t Stop with Great Ingredients
So you know our ingredients are top quality, but we continue our commitment to excellence right through the production process.
We produce our meals in a top notch, safe facility that handles human grade food. So, technically when your dog’s meal leaves our facility you could paw wrestle him for who gets to eat the meal when it arrives at your place… Not that I’m recommending you do that.
Once the meals are ready we deep freeze them, locking in freshness.
We work with the best refrigerated delivery services in the country to make sure that the meals are still frozen when they reach you.
* Wash your hands before and after handling raw food
* Sterilise any surface touched by raw food
* Sterilise any utensils that come into contact with raw food
Whatever you would normally do after getting raw chicken ready for your family barbecue or dinners. Do that.
It's not rocket science. Did I mention, wash your hands?
Dogs Are Designed to Handle Raw Meat
A dog’s digestive system is uniquely designed to handle any bacteria that may be found in the meal.
Keep in mind that because we use only FRESH human grade ingredients you are starting with the cleanest product available. IF you currently feed Raw and your supplier marks anything "Pet Grade" be aware its likely because the ingredients contain floor scrapings or food that hasn't met the quality demanded of "Human Grade".
An aside (and a warning as many people don’t realise this), dry foods like kibble can contain nasty bacteria including salmonella and various recalls have been necessary as a result of contamination.
If you are feeding kibble, please be careful and wash your hands after feeding your dog so you don’t find yourself coming down with a potentially nasty bacterial bug or infection.
Now You Mention It. Dog Food Recalls
You may have seen my blog regarding the latest dog food recall from Hill's Pet Nutrition. The makers of the popular Science Diet and Hill's Prescription Diet brands?
Or the 2018 Advance Dermocare Dog Food Recall
Both of these supposedly "Safe" options have allegedly contributed to the death of dogs in Australia and abroad and it's just not good enough.
If in the unlikely event that we need to recall a product, you will be the first to know about it. Not Fairfax, News Limited or Channel 9!
The system we have in place is designed to be proactive in that we will be able to contact you directly with an immediate warning and remedy should the need ever arise.
Imagine that for a minute. Your dog food supplier proactively contacting you directly before you even know there is potentially an issue?
No More Impersonal Relationships
My name is MJ, the Founder of Rawmate.
Author of this blog, innovator, disruptor, maker of change and most importantly the proud Doggy Daddy to two very well fed children and by children, I mean, Working Line German Shepherds (yes! two of them).
I am here to tell you that I'm putting the Dog Food Industry on notice!
For too long, you haven't known the people behind the products you feed your dog.
This currently anonymous way of conducting business is not in the best interests of your dog and I truly want to change that.
One of the unique side effects of the Rawmate model is that we are able to build personal relationships with our clients. That's the whole point of individually tailored raw meal plans for dogs, isn't it?
Instead of building an archaic, old-school, "this is how everyone does it" style business-- and slapping a Dog Food sign up, we're building something stronger, we're building Rawmate Pack. A community of dog lovers who believe as we do that Dogs Deserve Better
All things considered, we believe raw dog food to be a far superior option to kibble.
We also admit that there are some pretty good cooked dog food options out there that are also far superior to kibble.
When it comes to cooked vs raw though? Our vote is for Raw.
If you decide to prepare your own raw food dog diet, just make sure you are covering all your bases and doing it properly. It is an unfortunate statistic when I tell you that 95% of Homemade Raw Diets are nutritionally deficient and maybe even more saddening to know that 54% of dogs are obese.
If you’d like the benefits of a raw diet for dogs and the convenience of not having to source ingredients and prepare meals each day, let us take care of the prep and provide your dog with a customised Rawmate meal plan delivered right to your door.
We’d love to have you join our pack!
Here's the thing!
We aren't for everyone. We get that.
At the time of writing, our demand far exceeds our supply volumes so this might actually be a moot point.
We believe every one can do what we do, but time equals money. Right?
If you truly want the best for your dog, you'll understand that comes at a cost. Just like human food, it truly can be more expensive to eat healthy.
As always, please like, comment, share and subscribe.
We'd love to know why you believe what you believe when it comes to canine nutrition. We might agree, we might not but constructive feedback is always welcome. It's what makes us stronger and that is ultimately good for the doggos. Our primary concern.