Another important matter to remember when rawfeeding, besides making sure your dog gets all vitamins and minerals needed, is the quality of the meat you feed. It's a common practice to use lower quality parts of the carcass in order to make minced meats for dogs. This means less meat and more tendons, throat, lung and muscle membranes.
Dogs can digest ”rubbish” parts of the carcass, as can we people. The problem is, there are little to none important vitamins and minerals in those parts of the body. We are talking about tissues that hold no vital nutrients, take longer to digest and can cause issues with the digesting system. One of the main reasons raw fed dogs develop rock solid stools is feeding too much bone and feeding low quality meats.
If you are not willing to pay loads of extra and only use human consumption quality meats from your nearest grocery store or raise your own meat, you unfortunately need to do a little research trying to find proper quality meats. It all likehood you can't find super meats, but you can find decent and good meats. As long as the meat is clean and you use the best product you can get with as much meat as possible, you are good to go.
How can I tell a good meat from garbage?
Second factor is the smell. I recently changed our cow meat, which was not the best possible, to a new, way better beef, and the change in smell was huge. The previous meat, also stringy and filled with big pieces of whatever garbage parts of the body, also smelled horrible when defrost. This new meat smells the same as the minced beef I use to make meatballs (or I would use, if I'd make meatballs). It is finely minced and has nice texture and it's not overly bloody either.
Third factor is, unfortunately, the prize, but let me tell you, it doesn't always tell the ultimate truth! True, if the meat is dead cheap, it is probably not that great. Have a look at the prizes of different brands, ask around, and then pick test packages to defrost. That way you can find a nice quality food. II will list some good picks I use myself down below, but since I live in Finland and most people in the world don't, you might need to sneak around and do some research on your own among your own meat manufacturers.
Risks of membranes and cartilage
Even if your dog is able to digest these worse quality meats, their stools often get rock solid. This was one of the reasons I became aware of the problem; the stools were always hard no matter what I did and how much I fed fiber. When I played around with the meats and made sure I use better quality meats, the stools gradually got better.
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