CLEO

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NUFF NANG

Monday, December 31, 2012

RAW FEEDING FOR HEALTHIER DOGS

2 days worth of chicken for the lot of them
The kids have been doing really well on BFFLO (Big Food Fed Less Often). They seem fuller and more contented. Basically for those of you who are wondering what on earth this means, it simply means that they get a much larger meal and only eat every other day or so.. Note that this does not equal fasting!

One giant meal for Cleo
What happens with my lot is that (after some tweaking etc) they eat on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays only. They essentially get a double meal at each meal time except Wednesdays (they get a single meal here). I have scheduled it such so that I remember when to feed them and how much. Otherwise I may forget if they need to eat... ;-)


We are now almost 10/11 months into raw food for the kids. And I must say I am so pleased that I made the switch early this year! I cannot imagine ever putting them back on kibble! They are generally doing very very well.

Cleo's health has improved although we still have issues every now and then. But she is doing so well compared to before we made the switch! No one believes that she is an 8 year old labrador with a heart problem!


Lucky and Belle's skin have cleared up completely! No more nasty hot spots and sores and stinky coat!


Rascal has put on weight and his coat is so shiny and glossy eventhough he hasn't had a bath in 3 months already now!!! Lucky also has a really nice coat and he hasn't had a bath in a few months as well. Cleo and Belle have just had a bath yesterday after 2 months - and that was just because I felt that they needed one before the new year as opposed to them actually needing the one. The boys refused to get bathed so I gave up...


But seriously feeding raw has made my life so much easier in terms of bathing them. It used to be once a a week and it took me a really long time to get all of them bathed. I would be exhausted by the time I finished with them. And the worst part was that their skin (esp Lucky and Belle) was still not great and they would stink towards the end of the week! I have no such problem now!

The best part of raw feeding is that all of them have no ticks at all (even without regular baths) and we have stopped using Frontline for over a year now and they are not on any other tick or flea prevention remedies!

So if any of you out there are still sitting on the fence and contemplating whether or not to feed raw, I would say just do it! The benefits from raw feeding OUTWEIGHS the inconvenience of preparing the food by far...

In the mean time Happy New Year everyone!

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Note: This post is intended as a guide or reference and is not meant to replace veterinary advice. The information on this post is based on conclusions that I have made after extensive reading, advice from other raw feeders in particular the Raw Feeding and Raw Chat Facebook groups, and on my experience with my own dogs. Please consult your holistic veterinarian for advice on the most appropriate way to feed and supplement your dogs.

Monday, December 17, 2012

I'M DREAMING OF A WHITE CHRISTMAS...


 
I am dreaming of a white Christmas,
Just like the ones I used to know,
Where the tree tops glisten,
And children listen,
To hear sleigh bells in the snow....

Well I think my Lucky could tell that I was wishing I was in the snowy white mountains of Jasna, Slovakia like last year... And so he decided to give me a Malaysian white Christmas!!!


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

A SEMI FUR-LESS CLEO


Cleo had to go for an ultrasound of the chest and abdomen last week which meant that she had to be shaved almost completely from her chest all the way down to her abdomen... She's not very pleased with her new look and neither am I.

The good news is that her heart is functioning great! So we are all quite relieved. I think the raw food must be doing her a whole lot of good... The not so good news is that she has some minor irregularities in her spleen and bladder.

Dr Prem doesn't think that we need to worry too much about it though. So hopefully she will be right as rain after a couple of weeks on cranberry concentrate tablets.

In the mean time, I really hope that her fur grows back soon... The last time she had her chest shaved, it took ages before all the fur grew back nicely...

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

SNOOZING DOGS!

Cleo and Lucky all wrapped up in their blankets as it has been rather chilly of late...

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

CLEO'S 8TH BIRTHDAY PARTY

Cleo celebrated her 8th birthday a couple of weeks ago with her pal Shalom (who turned 9) and she had a blast at her birthday party. Here are some pictures of the party... 
 
Paper

This is terrible, but I always get confused between Jiro and Ayako - and they're supposed to be 2 different breeds!
Doug and Cleo
Cleo and Elvis - sharing a drink!
Rocky with Jiro and Ayako - I still can't tell which is which :-(
Shalo and hmmm either one of them waiting for a snack!

The Birthday cake
Cleo - waiting patiently for us to take a gazillion pictures

Shalom and Cleo - perfect Down Stay - and not even looking at the cake!
Evie, Shalom, Cleo, Me and Elvis (who couldn't stay away from the girls!)
 
The Diva Shalom
Cleo and friends

Elvis the Teddy Bear
Tyrus
Can't remember this lil' fella's name

Cleo - a perfect catch...

And yet another perfect catch
And away she goes...
Charge!!!
And here I come with the ball...
Cleo and Shalom sharing an ice cold drink...
Cleo - looking pretty
Lucky
Dog in a bag...
 

Monday, November 05, 2012

RASCAL - POST BREAKFAST SNOOZE!

I love feeding the kids BFFLO (Big Food Fed Less Often) cause they are really so content afterwards. All of them have a long snooze after their meal which is great for me cause it means that I can get some work done as they aren't demanding my attention every minute!

Rascal getting ready for a snooze!

Friday, October 26, 2012

CLEO CHILLING WITH LILY


Cleo chilling with Lily (our latest rescue). Lily has come a long way from being the scrawny and scared dog that she was when we picked her up. She has put on weight and is now a loving and playful kid. She's still slightly skittish with motorcycles and is a little suspicious (although curious) with new people.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Monday, October 15, 2012

BFFLO?

A 5kg block of Buffalo Meat
Some time ago, I mentioned that the kids have giant meals on Saturdays and rest on Sundays (i.e. no food on Sundays). Anyway, we have now progressed to the BFFLO (Big Food Fed Less Often) method of feeding, and the kids seem to be doing great on it. 

Cleo
The idea behind this method is that it mimics how wolves would eat in the wild, in that they would only eat every few days depending on whether or not they have managed to hunt for their meal. 

So these days, the kids eat 4 times a week: on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays  and Saturdays. They eat enough for two days at each meal, with the exception of Wednesdays where they have a meal for the day. I have yet to progress to feeding them for 3 whole days!, hence the reason for having a single meal on Wednesdays.

Cleo
They really seem to enjoy their super duper large meals, and Belle in particular is very contented after every meal, and sleeps for the most part after eating.

This is actually really great for us as it means she isn't barking her head off at everything and anything that passes in front of our house like she normally does. Don't get me wrong, she is still very alert and will bark (quite ferociously mind you) if there is actually someone right in front of our house, but she doesn't bark unnecessarily anymore.

I am definitely going carry on with this method of feeding :-) as it really makes things so much easier for me in so many ways!

Rascal eating his portion for 2 days.

*Note: Our cat Mishka is not on the BFFLO method as cats are supposed do not do well on this method. Mishka eats 2 or 3 small meals a day.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

IS FEEDING RAW EXPENSIVE?

Cleo - chomping down on a mackerel

The kids have been doing really well on their raw diet and I couldn't be more pleased. Now that we have been on raw for several months, I am less stressed about how much to feed them per meal etc. In fact they, have now transitioned to eating every 2 days... But I will write about that in another post.

Anyway, I have just received an email enquiring about raw feeding and about how expensive it will be. Well I thought I should just let everyone know that raw feeding can be as expensive as you want it to be or really cheap.

Some time back, I posted an estimate of how much I spent a month on feeding them raw.

This was my estimate then for one month:

Cost of feeding 4 medium/large dogs on kibble and cooked chicken:
2 bags of Orijen 6 fish formula at RM304 per bag   = RM 608
Fresh chicken breast meat at RM70 per week        = RM 280
Baked Lamb ribs to clean teeth RM 80 per week    = RM 320

Total cost = RM1,208 per month

Cost of feeding 4 medium/large dogs fresh raw "Kami Sakura" chicken
I need 1.5 chickens per day, which is about 45 chickens a month
Cost per bird = RM24
Total cost =RM1,080

At the time, as we were very new to raw food, they were only fed chicken, which also made raw feeding more expensive than it should be. Additionally, as I am quite anal about the type of chicken they eat, I actually chose a rather expensive type at the time, i.e. the Kami Sakura Chicken.

Currently, they are on DQ Clean Chicken which is even more expensive than the Kami Sakura Chicken, at RM26 per bird (which is only about 1kg per bird).

However, I thought I should just give you guys a break down of how much I spend now for my 4 dogs and cat:

The total weight of the kids is 92kg. I feed them all an average of 2% of their body weight, which means that I need about 1.84kg of food per day which translates into approximately 52kgs of food per month

Cost of feeding 4 medium/large dogs and a large cat raw food:
20kg chicken a month at RM26/bird/kg  = RM 520
12kg of buffalo a month at RM16/kg = 192
12kg of pork a month at RM18/kg = RM 216
4 kg of mackerel a month at RM17/kg = RM 68
2kg pork heart at RM10/kg = RM 20
1 kg chicken liver at RM5/kg = RM 5
1 kg lamb at RM50/kg = RM 50

Total cost per month = RM 1,071

Cleo eating her 1.2kg (2 day ration) of buffalo meat
Please bear in mind that the costs that I have indicated above are probably not reflective of how much you would actually spend. It is alot more expensive than it should be for a number of reasons.

The first being that I am feeding them DQ chicken. DQ chicken is super duper expensive. But I am still just a little apprehensive about feeding them normal chicken due to the antibiotic issues etc. Please see my previous post regarding the various types of chickens that are available which are free from antibiotics.

Normal chicken from the supermarket would be about RM15 per bird (or even less) and would weigh approximately 2kgs. So you would be looking at RM7.50 to RM8 per kg.

Secondly, I get all my meat (with the exception of pork) delivered to me by Good4UDelivery as I do not have the time to go shopping on a weekly basis which makes it alot more expensive. For example, you can get buffalo from Tesco at about RM10-RM12 per kg.  And mackerel from Tesco ranges from RM 7-RM 9 per kg. I am not sure how much lamb would cost at Tesco, so I shall just leave it at RM 50/kg. And pork from a regular market would probably cost between RM12 - RM15 per kg if not less.

So based on prices in Tesco, the above would work out to be:

Cost of feeding 4 medium/large dogs and a large cat raw food:

20kg chicken a month at RM 8/kg  = RM 160
12kg of buffalo a month at RM12/kg = 144
12kg of pork a month at RM15/kg = RM 180
4 kg of mackerel a month at RM 9/kg = RM 36
2kg pork heart at RM10/kg = RM 20
1 kg chicken liver at RM5/kg = RM 5
1 kg lamb at RM50/kg = RM 50

Estimated Total cost per month if purchased from Tesco = RM595

As you can see the cost of feeding raw can be very cheap. Additionally, if you shop at Tesco or any other supermarket and purchase based on what they have on offer, the cost can only go down further.

So I am hoping that if cost is a deterrent to you feeding raw, please take some time out to calculate how much you actually spend on kibble and store bought treats etc. And then think about how much meat and bones you would need to buy for your kids and take a walk through the supermarket and do some quick math. It really isn't that expensive... I promise!

Cleo
Additionally, there are other costs savings that you get from feeding raw.

The first being that your kids will be tick free! Seriously I have not had any ticks on them since they have been on raw and I have not used a single tick repellant or Frontline or anything! My kids have never  had any serious tick problems in the past because I would religiously use Frontline on them. So while they may pick up a tick or two, the ticks don't multiply and become a problem because of the Frontline.

However, I was always very concerned about using Frontline because it really is poison! And now I don't have to use it anymore. So that's another RM75 saved per month, as I used to go through a large bottle ever month.

Secondly, for some reason, the kids seem to be alot cleaner! Their fur is so much better compared to previously and they don't smell... And for those of you who know me, I am a stickler for having my dogs super clean. But these days, believe it or not, they only get washed once a month. And that's only because I just feel I need to wash them although they are still clean and don't smell. So I save alot on shampoo esp cause Cleo's shampoo cost RM42 per bottle and it would only last a month for her alone! And having said that, I have now switched to using Himalaya Herbal's Neem & Turmeric soap which is very cheap and lasts forever!

Thirdly, if your dog has skin problems, chances are raw food will clear it up albeit slowly. Belle used to suffer from severe skin issues and had to see the vet regularly to get antibiotics and antifungals and super expensive medicated shampoos! She has not seen the vet since, and for the last few months, we have stopped using the medicated shampoo cause her skin has cleared up completely.

Fourthly, I no longer have to buy expensive chew treats and bones because they get to chew on real meat and bones. So that's another huge cost savings!

I could go on for quite a bit more, but I hope that these points will also help you make that decision to switch your kids to raw food!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

IT WAS RAINING OUTSIDE....


It was chucking down like crazy earlier this evening. And these two were chilling in their beds...

Lucky was actually fast asleep in his Thundershirt... These days, storms don't bother him much even if he doesn't have his Thundershirt on... It's really amazing how the Thundershirt has helped him overcome his fears...

Saturday, September 29, 2012

GOOFY RASCAL

Of my 4 doggie kids, Rascal is the most serious dog. He's always prim and proper, and is also a bit of a grouch! So I just had to post this picture where he was goofing around with his new toy... This is really unusual for Rascal.

Nuffnang