CLEO

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NUFF NANG

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!

Nuffnang