Life Lessons, resources, and random bits for rescue dogs, cats, bunnies, and their peeps

Monday, June 29, 2015

Ruby Goes Primal, Week One


As I mentioned in last Monday's post, I have started transitioning Ruby to a raw diet. Thanks to Primal Pet Foods for generously sponsoring her food during this transition! 

After much consideration and research, I made this decision based on Ruby's history as a rescue dog. We adopted Ruby at age six or seven. The first half of her life was rough and the odds are she didn’t have a perfect diet.  It’s also clear that she’s had multiple litters of puppies and like most mama dogs, probably gave away everything she had to her babies.  A nutritionally dense, raw diet seemed like a great option for her.


The raw diet is designed to mimic a dog’s natural ancestral, carnivorous instincts. As direct descendants of wolves, dogs are genetically not meant to consume high carbohydrate diets typical of many commercial dog foods. Raw diets have many benefits including improved digestion, fewer allergies, and healthy weight maintenance.


Even though I was sold on the benefits of switching Ruby to a raw diet, as a lifelong vegetarian I was a wee bit squeamish. The raw diet is based on the premise that it is natural for a wolf (or dog) to consume the entire animal – meat, bones, organs, and all. Again, great for her, but could I handle it?

I'm not sure what I expected or feared – maybe that the food would be more recognizable? But of course, it's not. The freeze-dried formula comes in rectangular nuggets and there’s no evidence of what it is or was. This probably sounds silly, but thought it was worth mentioning in case there are other vegetarians or squeamish folks considering making the switch.


So far, the transition has gone smoothly. She has not had any stomach issues that sometimes accompany change in food. The folks at Primal have been very helpful and in addition to the food have provided us with recommendations and guidance.  I followed their advice and started with one half nugget rehydrated with water mixed with a serving of her old food. She did well with no adverse effects so after a few days I increased the ratio to 1.5 nuggets mixed with a half serving of her old food.


Most importantly, she enjoys the new food and cleans her bowl without hesitation. Thanks to Primal Pet Foods for providing us with the food and guidance to make this transition successfully. Tune in next Monday for an update on week two.

Will Ruby find her inner wolf? Stay tuned!


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47 comments

  1. That sounds great and I have to admit that it looks tasty.... even for a vegetarian LOL :o) IT's great that there are no thunderstorms in Ruby's tummy, seems it was a good decision to give it a try :o)
    easy rider

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  2. I've been mixing primal raw with regular kibble for years. Dexter gets about a third of his total food intake in the form of Primal nuggets. It makes a big difference. Every now and then, I run out of Primal (too lazy to thaw it out or something) and within a couple of days I notice that his coat is dryer and his poops aren't as healthy.

    Mango Momma

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  3. Your new raw food sure does look yummy, Ruby!

    Love ya lots♥
    Mitch and Molly

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  4. We don't do a full raw diet, but we love Primal freeze dried treats!

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  5. Glad that it is going well for Ruby. I would have had the same feelings about feeding raw. If it comes in little rectangular shapes, it must be being processed somewhat. But I sure hope Ruby does well on it all. Have a good week.

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  6. RUBY MY GIRL YOU FELL IN THE LAP OF LUXURY WHEN YOU WERE ADOPTED BY YOUR PEEPS.
    IT WAS THE FIRST DAY OF THE REST OF YOUR WONDERFUL LIFE. I'M SO GLAD YOU HAVE SOME YUMMY FOOD TOO
    TO TRY. IS IT THE FOOD THAT MAKES YOUR FURS SHINY? IF SO, I MIGHT GO PRIMAL TOO
    HUGS MADI YOUR BFFF

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  7. Yay for Ruby being switched over to raw!!!!! My Ma, not a vegetarian and a great cook who handles meat all the time, was nervous about switching me at first too. We used Primal when we switched and it was super easy...and honestly, I found it delicious. Since switching, I have been much healthier. You will notice such differences in Ruby, just you wait. Welcome to the raw fed club!
    Oz

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  8. Poor Ruby - we so wish she didn't have that "other" life, but how wonderful for her to have found you and your family. Great news on the transition so far, and the best part is that she likes it!!!

    Woos - Ciara and Lightning

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  9. That's interesting, when previous paws Mia was on her raw diet, not only did the peeps struggle with the evil smell but keeping it fresh was a constant problem. This does look sooo much easier!
    (oh, and I can't smell a thingy frum here even wiv my highly trained sniff fur foodables!)
    Loves and licky kisses
    Princess Leah xxx

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  10. That's great that they are providing you with guidance. I know I would be nervous when making the switch out of fear I was doing it all wrong!

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  11. We have done raw food all off our lives and Mom loves that there is now 'raw' freeze dried kibble available too and freeze dried raw food that you can take while traveling. We are strong believers in that dogs should eat what they are meant to eat and not what human sensibilities dictate is easier or more pleasant for us to give them.

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  12. What a great review! Can't wait to hear if Ruby finds her Inner Wolf!!

    -Ruby and Otto

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  13. I once considered and was all for the raw diet. But we have our own ways of feeding, and we hope this works out for you! Did I mention you are such a sweet princess?

    sumskersandearlskers13.blogspot.com

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  14. It sounds like Ruby is getting a lot out of her new raw diet, I hope it makes a difference to her wellbeing and health.
    Although I am a vegetarian myself, animals like dogs and cats are not and it's a case of giving them what they need, isn't it.
    Lynne x

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  15. I bet my boys would really enjoy that.

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  16. OH RUBY..... you did Score yourself some FINE FOODABLES... we don't do the Raw Diet thingy butt now and then Mom DOES give us some Raw Beef or Deer meat... Not the Freeze Dried kind... just RAW... and we LOVE it...

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  17. Aroooooooo Ruby, that's MY inner wolf howling atcha cause you're lookin gooood.

    Aroo to you,
    Sully

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  18. Hari OM
    Ruby, this is SUCH good news... I do hope that you continue to adapt well and we can begin to see you blossom to potential!!! Hugs and wags, YAM-aunty xxx

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  19. Cleaning the bowl is a good sign! Hope she does well on her new diet. She's such a cutie and so lucky to be livin' the good life now!

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  20. We are so glad the first week went so weel and are looking forward to seeing how Ruby does in the coming weeks!
    Smileys!
    Dory, Jakey, Arty & Bilbo

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  21. Those look yummy, but we love, love, love your photos pretty Ruby!

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  22. I like the sound of that diet.
    Hint hint Gail.
    Toodle pip!
    Bertie (so close to a wolf you could hardly tell the difference…)

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  23. It looks yummi :)

    Wags from Laika & Vaks

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  24. Oh Ruby I hope you don't find your inner wolf but I hope you find what you need to live a full long healthy life after having puppies you deserve the best.
    Thanks for being a friend
    Sweet William The Scot

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  25. We need to switch foods too. We fed Innova Evo for years but they will no longer be selling in Canada. I wonder if Primal is the way to go (assuming the sell in Canada).Look froward to seeing what Ruby thinks about it! :)

    the critters in the cottage xo

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  26. We are excited to hear how Ruby does on this food. Curious how it compares price wise to premium kibble
    hugs
    Mr Bailey, Hazel & Mabel

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  27. I'm glad Ruby's doing well so far with the raw diet. This looks like a pretty easy way to make the switch too.

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  28. Seeing the nuggets, I feel more comfortable that I could feed raw. I was a little squeamish about the whole feeding organs thing...

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  29. Mr. N loves his raw food. Glad Ruby is too!

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  30. We bet Ruby will do really well on the raw diet.

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  31. Good job Ruby!! Keep on lovin,, it!
    love
    tweedles

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  32. Thats great Ruby. You're releasing the animal in you!!

    Wags
    Oreo

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  33. Oh, you had us at natural and raw!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

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  34. We have some Primal and are slowly transitioning to a raw diet too. I think it is much healthier.

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  35. Glad Ruby enjoys her new food. That is half the battle. I was a little worried about the high protein causing hyperactivity when initially switching Muffin to Raw. This has not been the case however. Not sure if it is the food or maturity, but she seems much calmer these days.
    I hope Ruby continues to enjoy her new diet and that she does well on it x

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  36. Nuggets are much better than dealing with deaded chickens and stuff. Our Mommy doesn't like to deal with that stuff, either! Good luck to Ruby on her new diet adventure.
    XOXO

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  37. It's looking good for Ruby's new diet! Mum tried raw chicken wings with me once on the vet's advice and I wouldn't go near them! MOL

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  38. Yay for a first successful raw week for Ruby! When we switched our pups to a raw diet, neither of them had any digestive upsets whatsoever! Truly amazing! I'm looking forward to hearing about week two :-)

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  39. Glad Ruby is enjoying her new diet!

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  40. Dat's pawsum. Good luck.

    Luv ya'

    Dezi and Lexi

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  41. Ohhh nice! Lucky puppers!
    ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!

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  42. Primal is a good product and is well reviewed. However, current thinking is that dogs are not directly descended from wolves any more than humans directly descended from existing ape species. Using the common source, Wkipedia: " Modern dogs are more closely related to ancient wolf fossils that have been found in Europe than they are to modern gray wolves,[3] with nearly all dog breed's genetic closeness to the gray wolf due to admixture [2] but several Arctic dog breeds with the Taymyr wolf of North Asia due to admixture.[1]" There are important differences.

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  43. Primal is a good product and is well reviewed. However, current thinking is that dogs are not directly descended from wolves any more than humans directly descended from existing ape species. Using the common source, Wkipedia: " Modern dogs are more closely related to ancient wolf fossils that have been found in Europe than they are to modern gray wolves,[3] with nearly all dog breed's genetic closeness to the gray wolf due to admixture [2] but several Arctic dog breeds with the Taymyr wolf of North Asia due to admixture.[1]" There are important differences.

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  44. TW is so afraid of anything raw that it’s gonna contaminate the ktichen and everything else. She’s afraid she’ll have to wash out the sink and counter after every meal. She’s afraid of that 4-letter word—WORK.

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