MYTHS ABOUT RAW FEEDING
MYTH: RAW MEAT DIETS AREN'T BALANCED. Yes, all-meat diets are NOT balanced. You cannot feed a diet of just meat to your dog and expect it to do well. Your dog needs bones and organ meat as well to obtain the proper nutrients. This means feeding a prey-model diet based on a whole prey animal. Remember that your dog has no needs for vegetables, and that most of the nutrients in vegetables--even pre-processed ones--are unavailable to your dog (see the omnivore myth and the stomach contents myth for further reference). The alternative? Feed according to the prey model and provide variety. If you are feeding whole animals or a variety of raw meaty bones and organ meats, then your diet will be balanced. Raw foods contain the exact proportions of fat, protein, vitamins, minerals, and enzymes a dog needs.One other concept of balance that should be addressed is the idea perpetuated by the pet food companies: "Dogs need complete and balanced nutrition in every meal." This is nothing but lies. This is not how the canine body--or any other body--operates! Take your own diet, for example. Do you eat a complete and balanced meal every time you eat? No! You eat a variety of foods over a period of time, and yet your body generally does very well and exhibits no signs of nutritional deficiencies. Dogs do not need "complete and balanced" nutrition at every meal. If they did, then any time they didn't receive complete and balanced nutrition their bodies would get out of skew and problems would suddenly develop. This is not how it works. This is where the concept of "balance over time" comes in. This is the principle nearly every living being follows in regards to nutrition. Nutritional needs are met over a period of time, and balance is achieved through time as the animal eats what it needs at the time it needs it or whenever it can get it. The nutrients the body MUST have and can't synthesize for itself are supplied in sufficient amounts in the food the animal eats. Nutrients are stored within the body when they are eaten and aren't needed, but when the need arises, they are essentially pulled out of storage and used. This is what allows animals (and people!) to fast for sufficient periods of time without starving or dying. They not only have fat reserves and protein reserves in their muscles, but stored up nutrients and vitamins in their tissues (fat soluble vitamins, for example, like A, D, and K). Dogs do not need balance at every single meal; their bodies were not designed to function that way and cannot function at optimal levels when fed that way. When feeding your carnivore a raw diet, remember the principle of balance over time.
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