Changing our dog to “Paleo”…

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I love our dog. She is an absolutely wonderful, sweet, calm 9-year-old yellow lab named Babe. We just got her a few months ago, and she doesn’t like to eat. Well, she doesn’t like to eat dog food, that is. We’ve tried multiple brands, and no matter what brand I buy, she will go days without eating. Unless I pour meat broth in or stir in raw eggs or┬ábits of meat. Then, she goes to town, and is completely happy eating it….but she still spits out like half of the dog food and keeps the “good stuff.” And then, she makes sure as soon as we leave, to knock over our big trash can so she can scavenge through the mess. She’s obviously wanting more than she’s getting. So I thought, why in the heck am I feeding her this junk?? I mean, look at the photo below of the food she currently has (Beneful):


Why are there red and green pieces in there?! I can pretty much guarantee those are not “naturally colored.” So do dogs find red and green colors more appealing? Apparently Babe doesn’t.

I never feed our kids this kind of nasty stuff. Sure, they get some of it at other people’s houses, but we just don’t have that dyed stuff in our house. And why am I trying to force our dog to eat this when the first four ingredients are: ground yellow corn, chicken by-product meal, corn gluten meal and whole wheat flour?? Now, I don’t think Babe is human. And I know she does not have the same digestive system that humans have. But, she’s a dog. Aren’t dogs meat eaters? In the wild, do they chow down on corn and wheat? I highly doubt that. They eat meat. And plants. You can read more about that HERE.

My initial hesitation to switching over to a predominantly meat diet for her was the cost. It’s hard enough feeding our family of 7 good quality meats, produce, nuts and seeds on our limited budget. But, I’m paying about $30-40 a month right now on her food. If I change her diet, a lot of her food can come from the scraps of meat that we have leftover. I can buy nearly-expired organ meats for pretty darn cheap, and she would be ecstatic with that. So, I’m gonna try it. Maybe for a month or so to see how it goes. Maybe I’ll be wrong, and it’ll be way too pricey or not as simple a transition as I hope.

So, do any of you feed your dog a predominantly meat/plant protein diet? If so, have you been happy with it?
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  1. GirlFromMarz says

    My sister in law had her great dane on a diet of mostly chicken backs. They would go once a month to some place that provided restaurants with chicken or maybe it was just a restaurant that kept the back for them, I’m not exactly sure, and fill the freezer. But he would get a chicken back (bones and meat) and they made some vegetable treats as well for the dog. I’m sure you can research more for details, I obviously don’t know a whole lot about it. LOL

  2. says

    I grew up with two wonderful dogs who happily wolfed down plenty of bagged food, but I’ve been hearing a lot of buzz about Paleo pets recently. I’m interested to hear what others say about switching pets to a Paleo diet! I don’t have a pet right now but this is great knowledge for the future. Best of luck- sounds like Babe will be very happy with the transition.

  3. Vicki says

    I’d be very interested to hear what others are feeding their dogs! I have a lab also, and in addition to feeding him some of the meat that we eat, we are trying out the Blue Buffalo Freedom – Grain Free food. I supplement that with some of the PetBurger from US Wellness meats. We are just about finished with the first bag of the Blue Buffalo, but it was mixed with his old food, so we haven’t really noticed all that much difference in him. Here is the link to the ingredient list… I’d love to hear any thoughts you all might have on it!

  4. Leslie says

    We make the switch years ago with our dog! This was before I knew what Paloe was! It just made sense to feed him real food, food with real ingredients. Apparently it took me a few years to find out that I deserve that too! We started with Orijen. This food is amazing! Our dog had horrible flaky skin, gross gas, and bumps on his nose that we assumed were from crummy food. After a week all the issues had disappeared. Orijen is usually 70-80& animal and 30-20% fruits and vegetables. This food is wonderful, but it is also very pricy. After a while we decided that we wanted to try something a bit cheaper. The same company makes a different food that is almost as good, but not so hard on the wallet! Our pets love it, and they are lean and healthy animals that I am sure will live much happier and longer lives now that Purina is out of the picture! We currently feed our cat and our dog Acana food. It is 100% grain free, and contains 65% animal and 35% fruits and vegetables. I wouldn’t recommend any other food. It’s great stuff!

  5. says

    That food looks like Lucky Charms for dogs! Can’t wait to hear how the transition goes…I’ve been contemplating it for a while now with my dog but I travel a lot so I’m concerned about the transition period.

  6. Lisa Balda says

    We’ve been experimenting with our dogs food as well. He has food sensitivities and since we eat clean, we thought maybe he’d benefit from it as well. I’m not quite ready to go to a raw diet for him as I can barely keep up with my families food! We switched to a grain free salmon food by Taste of the Wild. He’s doing amazing on it, however, just after a few weeks, the company (Diamond Foods) recalled a lot of their products due to salmonella contamination. I’ve considered switching but Diamond makes practically ALL the other companies, such as Blue Buffalo and the costco grain free food. I’m interested to hear others opinions! Orijen is an option we’ve been looking into so it’s great to hear good things about it!

  7. H says

    try the raw feeding group on yahoo! abundant source of information, also google raw feeding–my dog is happy and healthy eating “real.” the idea is that dogs are carnivores (wolves) and therefore need meet, bone, and organ as a complete diet. It makes sense to me and works for us!


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