Warming and Cooling

Warming and Cooling

The  ‘Hot’ dogs and ‘Cold’ dogs.

The ‘Hot’ dogs exhibit the following symptoms…

  • They seek out cool places to sleep, rest
  • They may be hot to the touch
  • They pant even when at rest
  • They suffer from allergies
  • They may have red skin and eyes
  • They may shows signs of anxiety

 Feeding the “Hot Dog”:

Here is a list of cooling proteins that will help you keep your hot dog comfortable:

  1. Duck
  2. Rabbit
  3. Turkey
  4. Whiting Fish (which we carry)


The ‘Cold’ dogs exhibit the following symptoms…

  • They seek out warm places to sleep, rest
  • They are relaxed and calm
  • They love blankets and snuggling; they’ll have no trouble sleeping in bed with their humans (won’t get over heated)
  • They exhibit a lack of appetite at times
  • They aren’t fans of playing in the snow


Feeding the “Cold Dog”:

Here is a list of warming proteins that will help you keep your cold dog comfortable:

  1. Chicken
  2. Venison
  3. Lamb


Here is a list of Neutral Proteins:

These are neither warming or cooling proteins:

  1. Beef
  2. Bison
  3. Tripe
  4. Pork
  5. Most Fish

Some of us have experienced allergy issues with our fur family. An improper diet can fuel those allergies. Feeding the proper protein can help ease those issues and create a better life for your four legged family. No one knows best about your pet(s) then you.

Thank you for trusting Texas Tripe with the nutritional needs for you little and not so little Fur families. We look forward to many year of growing together and learning about each and every one you and your pets. God Bless

Reference below link

Helping Allergies In Dogs With Food Energetics

Helping Allergies In Dogs With Food Energetics

Benefits of Tripe

Tripe:  the magical mystery meat that dogs crave and humans fear!  Tripe seems to be the line in the sand drawn between beginning raw feeders and the ‘been there, done that’ old pros.

If you are among the uninitiated, then you will find feeding tripe to be a real treat (as will your dog).

Not only will tripe provide immense health benefits for your dog, it will catapult you to the rank of seasoned raw feeder, just one rung below raw feeders who scoop road kill off the road and tote it home in their trunk to proudly offer as a gift for their furry charges!

What is tripe?

Tripe is the stomach of a ruminating (grazing) animal including cows, buffalo and sheep. The unique stomachs of ruminants have four chambers which systematically break down grasses with a slew of digestive enzymes, gastric juices and amino acids.

You may have seen tripe on the grocery store shelves in a white and bleached form. This is not what you want to feed your dog:  it is devoid of any real value.  What you want to feed is ‘green tripe’, the stuff that comes right out of the animal, dripping with all of those wonderful juices.

Why does it have to be green?

The same digestive enzymes and beneficial bacteria that help the ruminant animal digest foodstuff will do the same for your dog.

Think how much money you can spend on digestive enzymes and probiotics in a bottle and those same wonderful, natural substances are in abundance in green tripe.

Digestive enzymes aid in digestion, meaning the body does not have to expend as much energy when digesting a meal.

This means your dog gets the most nutritional benefit from his meals.  Digestive enzymes also do much more than aid in digestion: they purify and cleanse the blood and remove toxins, parasites and fungus.  They also improve metabolism, hormonal function and boost the immune system.

Cooking destroys digestive enzymes, so it is important that your dog’s tripe is not only green, but raw.

If your dog eats a cooked or commercial diet, then he may be suffering from enzyme deficiency. The signs of this can include anxiety, lack of energy, chronic diarrhea and digestive problems, gingivitis, viral and bacterial infections and yeast overgrowth.

If your dog suffers from any of these disorders, consider the value of adding green tripe to his/her diet or increasing the amount you currently feed.

Thank you for being a part of our raw feeding family.


Here is a great article and where we came up with our conclusions and some of our own. This article is in reference to this writer. She is amazing.


What About Liver?

People usually ask about the safety of liver.

It is the liver’s job to neutralize toxins in the body from drugs or other chemicals, so obviously the best choice for liver is the grass fed kind, without added antibiotics or hormones. But don’t let that scare you away from liver: it filters toxins but doesn’t store them. Muscle meats are typically higher in unwanted toxins than liver.
Liver is also known to be one of the most concentrated sources of natural vitamin A of any food. Natural vitamin A works to aid digestion, keeps sex organs/reproductive organs healthy, and is a powerful antioxidant.
Liver is a great source of folic Acid, B vitamins and especially vitamin B12, which help with fatigue, mental ability and nerve health, as well as preventing anemia.
Liver also contains one of the best, most usable sources for the body, of iron. Iron is necessary for many functions in the body including formation of hemoglobin, brain development and function, regulation of body temperature, muscle activity and catecholamine metabolism, to name just a few. A lack of iron will have a direct effect on the immune system; it diminishes the number of T- cells and the production of antibodies.
Iron is essential for oxygen to the blood cells. The primary function of iron is oxygen transport and cell respiration. For an anemic person, fatigue is one of the most noticeable symptoms. The iron in liver is one of most easily absorbable and usable sources of iron.
Do you have a performance dog? Liver contains an anti-fatigue factor, which is likely to do with improving the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood cells; increasing endurance and strength in athletes of all species.
Liver contains many nitrogen containing compounds that are building blocks for DNA and RNA. In combination with the B vitamins, this makes it extremely helpful to people with Alzheimers or other types of dementia. Dogs can suffer from dementia as well, so be generous with the liver.
While liver is highly nutritious, its precious nutrients are very much affected by heat, so never cook it or the digestive enzymes and nutrients will be lost.
Thank you very much being a part of our Texas Tripe Family

What are Fats?


Fats are a concentrated form of energy that give your dog more than twice the amount of energy as carbohydrates and proteins do. Fats used in dog foods are highly digestible and are the first nutrients to be used by the body as energy, ahead of protein and carbohydrates.

Fats are made up of building blocks called fatty acids. Fatty acids are named according to their chemical structure and how they are bonded together. There are certain fatty acids that dogs require in their diet because the body cannot make them. These are known as essential fatty acids. These essential fatty acids are divided into two groups called the omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Fatty acids in both these groups must be provided in a specifically balanced ratio in the daily diet.


Fats have many important functions in the canine body. Not only do they provide energy, but they are also necessary for the normal development and function of body cells, nerves, muscles, and body tissues. They are important components in the body’s production of hormone-like substances called prostaglandins. Prostaglandins work to reduce inflammation, as well as perform many other important functions in the body.

Fats are part of the reason that dog foods taste good and smell good too (at least to your dog). Fats and oils also give structure to foods. They help the body to absorb certain vitamins called the fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, and K). Fats and oils in the diet keep your dog’s coat shiny and healthy and are also important in reproduction.

Not every fat or oil is good for our pets, however. The source, quality, and quantity of fat needs to be carefully considered when choosing a quality dog food.


When considering a food for your dog, check out the list of ingredients to see where the fats and oils are coming from. Fats in dog foods are typically supplied by both animal fat and oils from plants. Quality dog foods will list sources of fat that provide the proper balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.

Common sources of omega-3 fatty acids are fish oils (herring, salmon, etc.) and flaxseed and canola oils. Commonly used omega-6 fatty acid sources include pork fat, chicken fat (or any poultry fat), safflower and sunflower oils, as well as corn and soybean oils (vegetable oils). Watch out for lower-quality ingredients such as tallow or lard.

A lot of people feel like fat is bad.  It is bad when there is too much in a diet, or when we have a lethargic lifestyle (not enough exercise!)  However most raw pet foods do not have enough fat in the diet to provide the energy that is needed for a very active pet.   We find that with higher fat diets we can actually cut back on the amount of food that a pet needs to consume.  Also those pets who have a  high energy level, or a working animal, have a need for a higher level of energy in what they eat.  So while fat may be bad for us – it just may be the answer to the problems for our pets.   This is why we have formulated the Shepherd blend.  It is a higher fat blend around 30% that has been getting some very good results.

A math lesson and 3D (or 4D) meat

I have been getting a lot of questions and a few comments about beef prices, where does the Meat that Texas Tripe uses come from, and what is 3D meat?   I am going to answer those questions and help you to understand a little bit how the meat industry works.  Also with the knowledge that you will get from the math lesson, you will be able to tell right away what kind of meat you are dealing with.   I am going to use some round numbers to make it easier to understand and while the prices might not be actual, the way the math works is the same.

But first what is 3D or 4D meat?  Some of you know the answer to that question.  For the sake of simplicity I am going to refer to it as 3D meat. It is a question that has been asked to me many times over the last several years, and No I do not use 3D meat.   3D meat is from animals that are Dead, Down, or Diseased, the 4th D which some people use is Dying – if an animal is Down it is getting ready to die!  I have seen a lot of these kind of animals over the last 20+ years.  I am still surprised what some people are ready to take a chance on simply because they dont want to “lose it”  We used to process some of these animals as the owners would insist.  But no more.   Too many times they end up giving it to someone else because they “don’t like it” Not only do they lose the meat but they also lose the money that was put into the processing of it.

Now for the Math lesson. We buy mama cows from the sale barn that have come off of pasture.   State and Federal regulations will not allow anything to come into my plant that is not ambulatory or in other words “that can not walk in under its own power”.  Lets assume that the cow weighs 1000 lbs. live and that we have paid .25 per lb. for her.  We have $250 out of pocket for the cow.  When we harvest this animal and eviscerate it, also removing the hide, head and feet we typically end up with a weight on the rail of around 500 lbs. so now we have a cost of .50 per lb on what is hanging.  We also have just incurred a charge of $30 for the man to do his deed.  The next step is boning,  These animals will end up with around a 50% bone out, meaning that the 500 lb. carcass will possibly yield 250 lbs. of meat which we then can grind to make burger or in the case of pet food “beef blend” This will incur a charge of .60 per lb. on the starting weight (cleaned carcass) of 500 lbs. which would add $300 to the meat.   OK Lets review,  we have 250 lbs. of meat with a starting cost of $250 to which we have added $300, for processing and $30 for killing which brings us to a total of $580.  $580 divided by 250 lbs of finished, packaged product is $2.32 per lb.   We have been able to buy these animals for a little less then .25 which helps our price a little.  However if you are buying meat for less then $1 per lb. it is more then likely 3D meat. I have had one company call me and offer this product for .35 per lb.  Quite obvious to me where it came from.

Another issue I hear quite a bit is one regarding the use of charcoal or other “denaturant”, which is supposed to render it “not fit for Human Consumption”  one plant I know of uses green food coloring to make his inspector happy.   Meat that is safe for human consumption does not need denaturant or charcoal added to it. All of the poultry products I buy come from USDA inspected plants and in theory could be used for human consumption – backs or frames can be boiled for soup stock, and there is quite a bit of meat on the frames. Obviously once we grind these products with the bone in it it is changed into “inedible”.   One exception on the beef is the green tripe as the only tripe that will pass the inspector is the scaled and bleached variety.

We have two separate facilities where we process pet food and human edible food.  Both of these are inspected by the Texas Dept. of Agriculture’s Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS)  We are held accountable for proper labeling and sanitation in all areas of our operations.  We also are inspected for cross-contamination insuring that products are not co-mingled.

to be added on to.

The Best Dog Food Controversy

by Rob Mueller

Searching for the best dog food for our dogs is like searching for the holy grail. A significant amount of myth, confusion, hype, mis-information and unfounded research exists in developing the ideal dog food. Every manufacturer claims to have developed the ideal balance and complete food. The reality is that every one of these fabricated menu choices CAN’T be the ideal formula, because it is quite evident that the formula doesn’t exist. Why? Because no one person knows the perfect way to feed a dog (a carnivore). Is it proper to feed a dog a grain based diet? Is it appropriate to heat process the ingredients to render it SAFE from bacterial contamination? Is it sensible to add harmful ingredients in order to make it more palatable? Is it logical that a bag of dry kibble dog food can stay FRESH for 6 months with the bag left open? Is is harmful for your dog to consume a raw, unprocessed food source (like a BARF Diet)?

We can all speculate as to what the best food choice would be for dogs but it all comes down to common sense. Our company philosophy is based on common sense, testimonials, and a willingness to weigh the benefits and advantages against the potential risks. Other companies make their ingredient decisions based on cost, availability, and proposed scientific research. It is my contention that the research has been conducted with the intention of trying to find ways to make the digestive capacity of a carnivore function more as an omnivore.

Trying to make a meat eater enjoy a grain based meal is like feeding steak to a Koala bear. It becomes a challenge to find a suitable meal that will allow for growth and reproduction. The kibble manufacturers of the world have found a way to feed the majority of this nations dogs, a grain-based formula (a diet suitable for cattle not dogs). It is my mission, to provide a suitable and biologically appropriate diet for dog owners that are striving to improve the health and well being of their prized family pet.

Just like the current political climate in this country, where the citizens are demanding to have a better voice in how this country is run; an increasing number of dog owners are demanding a CHANGE to improve the health of their pets.

Guide to Raw Meat for Dogs

A Raw Meat Diet is Easy, Healthy & Your Dog Will Love It

Since I’ve been feeding Molly a raw meat and bones diet, her fur is shinier, her skin is no longer itchy, her teeth are sparkling and her breath is fresher — really. I want to share my knowledge and dispel misinformation about raw feeding. I’ll give you plenty of links where you can get more info and see whether raw meat is right for your dog.

Raw Meat: A Healthier Alternative to Grain-Based Kibble Diets 

As the owner of an energetic, lovable Springer Spaniel named Molly, and as the webmaster of a site dedicated to man’s best friend, I am naturally concerned about what my dog eats. Although she had good energy, she constantly scratched, had nasty doggy breath and yellow, tarter-stained teeth that I spent a lot of money getting cleaned. She also disliked every brand of dog food I tried. As I did some research on dog allergies and dog food for my website, I realized that Molly’s issues were caused by her premium kibble diet. Most commercial dog foods are heavily grain based, and many experts suspect that the grains are what cause most allergies in dogs, particularly skin allergies. The more I read about a raw meat diet for dogs — especially in light of the recent toxic dog food scare — the more I realized that this was the diet nature intended for dogs.

Raw Meat Diet vs Commercial Kibble 

Why Should You Make the Change?

We have to stop thinking of dog’s diets in human terms. Dogs are carnivores. They do not need grains and veggies; they need meat protein to function optimally. While some pet experts recommend a BARF raw food diet, which includes raw meaty bones as well as fruits, vegetables, grains and even dairy, there is a growing trend toward feeding dogs strictly a raw meaty bones diet. This idea is based on the prey model found in nature.

Why Feed Raw Meat & Bones

  • A raw meat diet is the way nature intended. A species appropriate diet for dogs is one that mimics the way wolves and wild dogs eat in their natural habitat. They feed on the whole carcass, including the organs and the bones, which provides them with all the essential nutrients.
  • A RMB diet increases healthy immune system function, reduces dry skin, allergies, and inflammation. Stools will be smaller and won’t smell as bad.
  • A previously sluggish dog will likely have more energy and spark.
  • Chewing on raw meaty bones helps scrape tarter off the teeth and gives the jaws a workout.
  • Commercial dog food is unregulated. Most dog foods are grain-based with insufficient meat protein. They can and often do contain euthanized animals, meat from sick animals, indigestible ingredients, preservatives, and cancer-causing chemicals. Because of the way manufacturers are allowed to label dog food, you probably won’t even know the chemicals and preservatives are in there, even if it says “preservative-free.” This is because chemicals and preservatives are frequently added at the rendering plant, before they reach the manufacturer.
  • Grains such as corn, wheat, and soy, commonly found in commercial foods, are major causes of allergies in dogs.
  • Vets won’t tell you about the merits of raw feeding because the few hours of nutritional training they get at veterinary schools are often taught or subsidized by pet food manufacturers.

A New Dog
As I started feeding Molly a raw diet, she did a complete turnaround. Formerly I had to beg her to eat; now she jumps into a perky “sit” as soon as her meat appears and devours it instantly. The small amount of raw bone she eats (about 10% of her diet) helps scrape tarter off her teeth, which are now pearly white. Her coat is shinier, she’s stopped scratching, and even her doggy breath smells better.

The Truth About Raw Feeding 

Let’s Dispel Some Myths

You may be skeptical about giving your dog raw meat, because we’ve all been conditioned by pet food companies. Here are some common concerns:

Is my dog going to get all the nutrients he needs?
Yes. Dogs are carnivores. They need meat. The proof of whether your dog is getting proper nutrients will be in his improved coat, clean teeth and breath and relief from skin allergies.

Is he going to choke on the bones?
Very unlikely, if they are raw. Cooked bones are another issue; they can splinter and be dangerous.

What about parasites and bacteria like salmonella and e coli?
Even though we sometimes think of them that way, dogs are not human. Their systems are different than ours. They have an extremely acidic gut that helps prevent bacteria from colonizing and there are enzymes in their saliva that have antibacterial properties. They have a higher bacteria tolerance than we do. It is highly unlikely that a dog will get sick from raw food, unless the dog is already immuno-compromised. Just be sure to use common sense and practice good hygiene when you are feeding raw, just as you would when handling raw meat while preparing your own meals.

Will Raw Meat Make My Dog Bloodthirsty?
This is a common concern and one I don’t quite understand. My dog is eager to eat her chicken, beef, venison, etc., but she is hardly going to tear my hand off to get it. While she may chase a rabbit or two, the fun is in the chase!

Feeding Raw is Easy 

A raw meat diet is simple. Feed your dog chicken (bone-in), beef roasts and ribs, pork ribs, pork shoulder roasts, turkey quarters, fish, leg of lamb, venison, rabbit and other game. Nothing else. No vegetables, no fruit, no grains. Raw feeders advocate about 10% of the diet should consist of bone and the rest meat, including a small portion of organ meat such as liver, kidney and heart. A good rule of thumb is to feed your dog about 2% of his body weight daily.

Avoid feeding your dog cut bones like pork country style ribs, bone-in chuck roast or bone-in steaks, pork chops, or other meats with sharp, thinly sliced blades of bone.

Start Slowly.
It is usually best to start with chicken because it is relatively bland and easy to digest. As your dog gets used to the chicken, you can gradually introduce new foods, one at a time, such as pork, beef, or lamb. At first your dog may have loose stools as he gets accustomed to his new diet. This goes away in a few days.

Links to Raw Feeding and Dog Health 

Yahoo Raw Feeding Group
This is a wonderful Yahoo newsgroup on raw feeding that I highly recommend you check out. Join it and just lurk for a few weeks. Read the postings, read their suggested readings and ask some questions. That is the best way to decide if raw feeding is right for you. Raw feeding is not rocket science. In fact, you will be surprised at how easy it is and it costs about the same as feeding your pet a premium dog food.
Carnivore Feed & Feed Suppliers
Carnivore feed suppliers provides a list of what they have to offer people who feed their carnivores a natural raw diet. Pet owners list their needs. A great resource for finding meat for your pet locally.
Old Raw Carnivores
A Yahoo list for people with older dogs and cats who eat a carnivore diet
Raw Chat
This is related to the Raw Feeding Yahoo group and also discusses vaccinations,training, worming and other issues.
Raw Learning
A raw feeding FAQ, explains why you shouldn’t feed your dog commercial food, dispels myths about raw, how to feed your dog raw, why you don’t need to waste money on supplements, and more.
Raw Meaty Bones
Features an e-book that you can read free online that explains the health benefits of raw feeding, what to feed and how to feed.
Dog Food Secrets
Important Info About Commercial Dog Foods:
As a dog lover, you MUST watch this video that I just saw about the dog food industry. It could save your dog’s life.
Myths About Raw Feeding
This site dispels some of the many myths about dogs, wolves, and feeding raw meaty bones to our pets.
Raw Fed Dogs
Tells you how to feed your dog raw meat, complete with photos, a FAQ and glossery of raw terms

Feeding Your Dog

David McCluggage, D.V.M., C.V.A.
Chaparral Animal Health Center

To understand how to feed a dog, we first need to understand some basic aspects of canine nutrition. Dogs are almost strictly carnivores. They will eat some grains, fruits and vegetables. Dogs thrive on diets made up almost entirely of meat, as long as we feed some organ meat, bones, grains and vegetables.

Most dogs on any diet will benefit from a good quality Nutritional Supplement. Our favorite products for dogs are:

Conventional-minded veterinarians often say that commercial diets are superior to home cooked natural foods because the commercial diets are balanced, while home cooking creates nutritional deficiencies and diseases. The reality is just the opposite, as we will see. First, it is really not hard to feed a good, nutritious diet of fresh foods that you prepare. As we will explain, it is actually easy and very rewarding to provide the type of diet that dogs love to eat and actually thrive on.

Information on ordering Flint River Ranch pet foods is available.

First, let’s look at commercial diets. The long-standing veterinarian recommendation has been to feed nothing but a commercial diet (usually one of the “kibble diets”, meaning the hard, crunchy, dry diets). These diets claim to be nutritionally complete, balanced, and “AAFCO Certified”. According to conventional thinking, feeding anything else will lead to a multitude of nutritional diseases. But, when looked at more closely, this idea makes little sense. First, we know that basic anatomy, biochemistry, and organ function is essentially the same for dogs and humans. For people, the most basic concept of a good diet is eating fresh foods and eating a variety of these foods. We would never think of feeding ourselves out of a can, or feeding ourselves a monotonous piece of dry “people” kibble. And we would never think of feeding ourselves the same food day in and day out, because we know how important variety is to the total diet.

Many dogs should recieve a calcium supplement when home feeding, we recommend Calcium Citramate. Click here to see about Calcium Citramate.

Years ago, nutritionists thought that it hardly mattered what type of foods one ate, as long as the food contained certain levels of amino acids (proteins), fatty acids, and carbohydrates (simple and complex sugars). The “old thought” used to be that the body’s digestion would break down any food item into simple amino acids, sugars and fatty acids. then reassemble them in the body to form the complex molecules required by life. This explains the evolution of foods such as Wonder Bread with 13 added vitamins. As the study of nutrition has advanced, we now know that the body does, indeed, absorb complex nutritional compounds, not just simple sugars, carbohydrates, and fatty acids. Not only can these complex compounds be absorbed, but the body requires them for optimal health. The body actually “expects” to have these nutrients available, and will utilize these chemicals as building blocks for a variety of processes, including immune function, nerve function, and rebuilding damaged cells to name a few.

Let’s look at some of the most recent research on human nutrition:

“Consuming a diet rich in plant foods will provide a milieu of phytochemicals – nonnutritive substances in plants that possess health-protective benefits.”

“Vegetables, fruits, whole grains, herbs, nuts and seeds contain an abundance of phenolic compounds, terpenoids, sulfur compounds, pigments, and other natural antioxidants that have been associated with protection from and/or treatment of conditions such as cardiovascular disease and cancer.”

������� Craig W, Beck L. Phytochemicals: Health Protective Effects. Can J Diet Pract Res. 1999 Summer;60(2):78-84.

Many of these phytonutrients are not heat stable, especially when cooked extensively, as with commercial dog foods.

Considering the high temperature, high pressure, and processing that commercial dog foods receive, we can expect that these dog foods are totally devoid of the beneficial nutrients mentioned by Dr. Craig in this well-respected study.

In recent years, the practice of recommending commercial diets as the only source of food for dogs has come under increasing scrutiny, often by trained nutritionists. It has been stated by one veterinarian with a Ph.D. in nutrition that we “are killing our pets with commercial diets”. Most holistic doctors agree that the best diets are those with home-prepared foods as part of the diet. Many conventional veterinarians will at least agree that diets will improve when we offer some fresh foods and use variety.

I have seen the health of almost all dogs deteriorate, in general, when fed commercial diets. Conversely, when my canine patients are placed on wholesome diets, fully a third of the dogs that arrive in our practice diagnosed with a chronic, incurable disease return to complete health just by the change in diet!

Why are commercial diets so poor?

Here are some of the reasons:

1.                Cost

  • Even premium diets cost about one dollar a pound. When we factor in manufacturing, marketing, shipping, packaging, and markup costs for the manufacturer, the wholesaler, and the retailer, the true cost of the basic ingredients is more likely 10-50 cents per pound.
  • Reflect on what type of raw ingredients can be purchased for this price.
  • Commercial diets are primarily conceived and developed to minimize costs, not maximize nutrition.
  • To keep the cost so low, commercial diets have foods in them that have been rejected for human consumption. Even those that refrain from using condemned foods must resort to including foods that are far worse than what people would demand for themselves.

2.                Diets are made to meet minimal standards, not optimal standards.

  • Again, due to cost considerations, essential fats, complex carbohydrates, and high-quality digestible proteins are kept to a minimum in the diet.
  • Healthy animals can survive on these diets, but over time, there is a price to be paid in deteriorating health and a more rapid aging process for your canine companion.
  • Sick animals, and those with a more fragile constitution, require high quality, optimal diets.

3.                Over-processing (i.e., high temperature cooking under pressure) is used to make indigestible foods digestible.

  • Food processing plants have known for a very long time that if one wants to feed a food item that is essentially indigestible, the way to do this is to cook the product so excessively that it turns into a soup. Then, by adding grains (again, after extreme cooking methods), one can cook the product once more and turn it into a hard biscuit or kibble.
  • Unfortunately, all of the complex compounds we already mentioned as being so essential have disappeared.
  • Vitamins are also gone, so the commercial food industry will then spray vitamins mixed with oils (which have likewise been destroyed) onto the resulting hard kibble at the end of the processing. The vitamins are often synthetic, and the minerals are often poorly digestible at best. An example is zinc oxide and ferrous oxide, forms of zinc and iron supplementation that are often preferred by the food industry because they are so cheap (they are, in reality, rust). But they are very poorly absorbed, making them almost useless to the body.

4.                “Garbage in garbage out,” a long-standing truism in the computer world, is just as true in diets: poor quality foods can’t become good quality foods, no matter what one tries to do with them.

  • To the degree possible, diets should start with the highest quality, most digestible and wholesome food possible, instead of starting with the worst foods and trying to improve them with synthetic vitamins and false claims of being “nutritionally complete”.
  • This is called the food’s “Biological Value”.

Labels and Labeling Requirements

All regulations that control the labels on dog foods are created by AAFCO. AAFCO, as has already been stated, is a group controlled by commercial animal food manufacturers.� It is not surprising to find that there are enough loopholes in labeling requirements to make it completely impossible to know what is in a diet, let alone the quality of the diet. Any manufacturer who wishes can create the marketing image that their product is a “premium diet”.

In fact, most of these premium diets are, at best, only marginally better than the average diet, and many of them are conceived entirely as a marketing ploy to sell an average diet with a higher markup, creating higher profit margins.

One example of how easy it is to use subterfuge to create an image of wholesomeness, or using a term popular in the industry, “natural”, is in the use of preservatives. Many companies will use standard preservatives such as ethoxyquin; yet not mention this in the ingredient list. This is possible if the company adds the preservatives themselves instead of buying a product that already includes them as a preservative. Making the situation even worse is that it is common to then say on the package, “preserved naturally with Vitamin E”. This statement naturally implies that no other chemical preservative is in the product, when in fact the company can make this claim by simply adding a little extra Vitamin E than is required by AAFCO to meet minimal needs. The ethoxyquin can then be purchased in a product such as chicken fat that contains ethoxyquin, and thus that information never needs to be placed on the label!

Basic Diet Recommendations for Dogs©

Note: These diet recommendations will always vary in practice due to the age, health, disease status, and constitution of the dog.

Dogs are carnivores, so they need meat. No plant foods contain all the proteins that a dog needs to thrive. This is why we do not recommend a vegetarian diet for a dog.

Always start the following recommendations gradually, introducing these foods slowly, over a couple of weeks. If you have any problems or questions as you start this new diet for your dog, please give us a call!

Your Animal’s Specific Recommendations

Each dog is a unique animal with specific and varied nutritional needs. We do not believe in the concept that one diet fits all needs (a false concept propagated by commercial diets and AFFCO regulators). The following guidelines are meant to cover most situations. In practice, most animals will receive a variation on this plan once we know the specifics of your dog.

I.                Meat Portion:

a.     All dogs should be fed, by volume of the total amount fed each meal, 25-50% meat

b.     The meat can include:

                                                              i.      Beef

                                                             ii.      Chicken

                                                           iii.      Turkey

                                                          iv.      Fish

c.      The easiest way to start this program is to use ground meats. Take the portion to be fed, mix with water, and cook on the stovetop or in the microwave until the meat is cooked medium (pink) to medium-well. Some animals will thrive on raw meats, but do not start this practice in the beginning.

                                                              i.      Take this meat portion, including the water, and add it to the rest of the ingredients

Your Animal’s Specific Recommendations: Only available following a phone consult

II.            Commercial Dog Food Portion

a.     Although there are many good home-cooking recipes (which we can provide you), we feel that most owners have little time or inclination to routinely feed an entirely home-cooked diet for their dog. Good intentions fall by the wayside, and the diet plan is not followed as it should be. Instead, by feeding some meat, some commercial diet, and the rest as outlined below, the dog receives an excellent, well-balanced diet. Costs are kept at a minimum, and the time required to prepare the diet is so moderate that even the busiest person will be able to follow this feeding protocol.

b.     There are many commercial diets that are good diets. However, none stand out as clearly superior to any other (they are NOT home cooking, after all). There are, however, a large number that are not worth feeding because they are either of too poor a quality or they are not cost effective (remember the average commercial diets that masquerade as premium diets). There are too many of these to mention, but a good clue that the diet falls in this category is if it claims to be “just as good as such and such, but costs less”, or the “premium diet costs less than about a dollar a pound”.

c.      We use and recommend the Flint River Ranch diets, and will gladly provide you with information on how to order them.

d.     The commercial diet, whether dry food or canned, should be of as high a quality as you can afford, and should make up no more than 25-40% of the diet.

Your Animal’s Specific Recommendations: Only available following a phone consult


III.        The Variety Component

a.     Since grains and other carbohydrates are not necessary, we recommend they be fed sparingly. Their biggest benefit is that they are inexpensive. Using the plan we are outlining, they are even less necessary, because the commercial diets contain grains. One of our favorite grains to use is white rice. Many dogs have digestive problems, which improve when rice is fed.

b.     Vegetables should be routinely added. We recommend:

                                                              i.      Carrots

                                                             ii.      Broccoli

                                                           iii.      Peas

                                                          iv.      Leafy greens

c.      Sweet potatoes, pumpkin, yams, and squashes are all excellent additions to the diet. Sweet potato is especially good, inexpensive, easy to prepare, and readily accepted. Sweet potato should be cooked, and can then be used a portion at a time over a few days. They can be mashed and mixed so well into the diet that all animals will accept them. Carrots often need to be cooked lightly or shredded/chopped finely, or they may not be accepted or completely digested.

d.     Dairy products can be included sparingly. Our favorites are:

                                                              i.      Yogurt

                                                             ii.      Cottage Cheese

e.     Eggs are great to feed, and can be fed cooked or raw. We recommend no more than a couple of eggs a week, if fed raw. Cooked eggs can be fed a little more frequently.

f.       Leftovers can be fed as well, as long as they are good food and not excessively fatty or sweet.

g.     The variety component should be just that: fed for variety, one thing one day, and another thing another day. Don’t get caught up in a routine where you are feeding the same things all the time. Variety is just as necessary for your dog as it is for yourself.

h.     A couple final thoughts:

                                                              i.      Corn is not a vegetable. It is a grain, and it is in plentiful supply in almost all commercial diets. so there is no reason to feed corn.

                                                             ii.      Legumes (beans, peanuts) are good sources of proteins and fiber, but do not have particularly large amounts of vitamins and tend to provide excessive carbohydrates, which leads to obesity.