Last year I started really considering going to the raw diet for my crew. After lots of research I thought it was the best choice for a number of reasons.
We looked at places to buy it and we decided we just couldn't afford it at that time.
Sam has TERRIBLE allergies. He's always in the vet for a round of steroids to get his itching under control. Since Lucky has a bit of itchiness herself we decided to just switch all their dog food to the new one Sam had. Which is by Prairie Homes and it's chicken and brown rice, and blue berries, and carrots I believe. Lucky's coat has improved tremendously! She never itchies anymore! Happy started to lose the extra weight he had (he put some back on though but I think that's because I let him be lazy and didn't cut back how much he was getting) Sam improved but was still itchy, I talked to the vet and she said he has more than just the grain allergy. I said that we were thinking of switching to the lamb formula, but she said that lamb and chicken are used a lot commercially anymore and that Sam may not be able to handle that protein. She suggested we switch him to a fish diet.
So now Sam is on a fish and sweet potato forumla and we have kept Happy and Lucky on the chicken one for now. We're averaging between 100 and 120 bucks a month on dog food. So now we're wondering if switching to raw would be cost effective or if it would be a bit more.
How much do you guys usually spend on raw on a month? I have three labs, one at 100lbs who needs to get down to about 86ish one that's at 72lbs and according to the vet she's fine, according to me she needs to gain a bit more. She's too skinny, all hers is muscles and she looked beautiful at 82lbs. She's very active. Then the last one is only 14months at 62lbs.
Also since Sam has these allergies is raw going to agree with him or do I need to keep with this fish diet?
I spend about $50 per month per dog, less if I take the time to travel a bit for cheaper sources.
Allergies are an auto-immune issue. The three biggest things you can do IMO is to get the dog on a raw diet, stop vaccinating, and take the dog off the steroids. Then I would consult a classical homeopath (many do phone consults and I can recommend mine if you wish). I would also get the dog on a good probiotic, digestive enzymes and fish oil.
Traditional medicine has a horrible track record with allergies as it just treats the symptoms and the drug treatments exacerbate the underlying cause.
Case in point; I had a girl suffer terrible allergies last summer, in a response to a build up of drugs. She had seven surgeries in her short life and after her last, a C-section, her immune system was out of gas. She had the worst pustules on her chin and muzzle I've ever seen (gaping volcanoes full of pus), red, irritated eyes, huge bald spots on her coat with the whitest, pastiest skin underneath, irritated anal glands, ears full of yeast, you name it. She was miserable. I messed around with various 'holistic vets' and finally found a good, solid classical homeopath (this is a must)! I spent three hours there, taking her case, they sent me home with a remedy that cost about $10, I gave it to her and within 24 hours, her skin turned from white and pasty back to brown and it had dried up considerably. One year later, we are still good and although she still drags her bum around and has off and on yeasty ears, I feel we are almost out of the woods.
This is just my opinion of course, but I just wanted to give you another point of view, in case you get frustrated with your current treatment. I know how frustrating this can be!!!
To err is human:To forgive, canine."
Not sure I can be of much help, as I am just switching over, and am for now, using the Volhard and Honest Kitchen products and just adding my own meat (and probiotics). My meat is "free" however. However, in calculating the eventual cost, I would say I will spend about $100.00-$120.00 per month for all three dogs (85#, 65# and 60#).
As always, Dana's advice about the allergies and homeopath is right on!
Karen and the gang
BBI Kodi's Journey To Anotch (Journey)
BBI Kodi's Blackpowder Striker (Flint)
I agree with Dana. Allergies are autoimmune issues and I would never put a dog on steroids for that. Makes it worse. I can't say how much I spend on feeding raw but I know it is not as much as I would spend on premium kibble. I have two 80# there about Labs who work everyday.
UCDX GRCH Dunn's Marsh Caleb of Waltona UDX3, OM3, RAE Canadian UD, RE
FallRiver's Micah of Waltona GN RAE, Canadian CD, RN
It costs me about $30 a month to feed my 60lb lab. we do alot of field work so she does eat a bit more. I feed mostly chicken, fish turkey, eggs, tuna, etc. I have a supply of chicken parts for 38 cents a pound but I have to buy 40lb boxes.
Light, "weedy" individuals are definitely incorrect; equally objectionable are cloddy lumbering specimens. Labrador Retrievers shall be shown in working condition well-muscled and without excess fat. Females should weigh between 55 and 70lbs and Males between 65 and 80lbs. Height females 21.5 to 23.5 inches males 22.5 to 24.5 inches at the withers.
HR Greenwoods Sealion Tsunami SH "Wave" born 3-9-2010
Greenwoods Amber Wave VCD2 RA SH AX OF WCX CGC "Amber" born 4-13-2005