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My two year old flatcoat has been on the raw food diet since joining us at 8 weeks old. He looks fit and healthy but after eating his stomach looks slightly distended is extremely noisy and he looks uncomfortable and hunched over. This can go on for up to an hour during which he paces and cannot settle. When he is hungry (which is pretty much constant!) his stomach growls and he sometimes whines. We have spread his food over 3 meals so he doesn't just gulp it all down in one go (he almost inhales his food!) I see one of his litter brothers who has the same problems - in fact until they started to feed him raw food he was very unwell indeed - not putting on weight and constant wind and diahorrea.  My dogs stools are ok but he is very windy - luckily not offensive! We know that the litter were bottle fed for a while because the mother had severe mastitis. Do you think probiotics would help. By the way his litter mate has undergone a lot of tests with a specialist which came back clear. I just feel I should be helping him. Many thanks.

Hi Meryl,

I think it's fantastic that you started him on the raw food diet so young. This will go a long ways to keeping him healthy throughout his life.

Dogs by nature instinctively gulp there food at that's the way their systems are designed to work. They don't need to chew their food real good, and can't really, as we do. Their designed to shred bigger chunks of meat and swallow.

Their ultra high acidic stomach will take care of the rest.

Make sure you are feeding complete balanced raw diets and not just raw meat from the grocery store.

Dogs need many minerals that are not included in just meat. Mainly the calcium from bones and other nutrients they get from organ meat.

If you are not feeding commercially prepared raw diets, then you need to get a book or two that describes everything that needs to go into a homemade raw diet. There are good holistic care for dogs books on Amazon.

Commercial raw products most all have ground up bone and organ meat in them. Many contain a range of vegetables in them from 5% to 20%.

The vegetables are good in there as they are high fiber. This will help provide a little fuller feeling.

We work with and/or follow a couple of holistic vets and they concluded that 20% mixed vegetables are a perfect ratio for dogs.

We feed a commercially prepared raw food that does contain 20% vegetables. It's working very well for our guys.

Of course they all still act hungry afterwords as well. This is just common. But some tough love will keep them at a proper weight.

We also add enzymes and probiotics to each meal. This is still very important even though we are feeding a raw based diet.

This is because most all meats, commercially prepared or in your grocery store is from muscle meat. This muscle meat contains very little digestive enzymes.

The natural good digestive enzymes in the prey model diet is located in the intestines and bile ducts. They just don't use these.

So added enzymes and probiotics to a raw diet is still very essential. This will help his digestive system process the food better.

Animal essentials makes a good one that we carry and use ourselves. They have a product that contains both enzymes and probiotics in one bottle. Just sprinkle a pinch on each meal.

If he continues to have digestive problems, he may need a higher dose of enzymes and probiotics. There just shouldn't be much gas passed. This is a sign of incomplete digestion.

You can add a few things for variety and that might help. Such as a little cottage cheese, an egg once a week. Some extra salmon oil, canned salmon, canned tuna or the best for him would be some canned sardines in water once or twice a week.

Variety is a good thing, especially when they are young. Give them lots of different things, proteins and such. This will help keep his digestive and thus immune system stronger.

Add a little greens now and then like maybe some pet kelp, wheat grass, or spirulina. These things help keep his immune system stronger.

I hope this helps and should you have any other questions or would like to add some things, feel free to write back and I'll see if I can help.



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Roger McLeskey


Can answer all nutritional information for all dogs. Common problems with food, supplements, weight control, allergies, fleas, etc. Questions regarding raw food, homemade food, skin & coat issues, ect. Can't and/or will not do medicinal type questions that the vet takes care of.


I am certified in Dog Nutrition. Over 6 years now I've owned a natural pet food retail store. I've worked with hundreds of dogs and there owners to achieve better health. We promote a healthy balanced species related diet. This is the way nature made your pet to thrive. Fortunately for those who cannot or wish not to feed a raw based diet, there are alternatives with supplements and cooked food. Just don't let processed food be there only diet. Food is the most powerful medicine. Heal the core of the animal and the rest will take care of itself. We've turned the lives of many dogs around. There parents come back into the store and comment to us on how there dog acts like a real dog again. Our business is thriving and we continue to help many.

We work with Second Chance Companions, Must Love Dogs, members of ASPCA, HSUSA and started our own personal "Red Head Rescue" (non chartered) for stray dogs and rescue dogs from high kill shelters. We've been able to heal the many health ailments these dogs have and place them in good homes.

Dog Food Decoded - How To Choose A Health Diet For Your Dog and Your Budget - Available on Amazon in Kindle format or Paperback. Various articles for in store and web.

Certified - Canine Nutrition Level Three. Last 7 years I've been working with veterinarians, holistic veterinarians, attending seminars and best of all, real life experience with hundreds of customer dogs and cats. I've seen what works and does not work. Feeding a proper species appropriate diet works for most ailments. We've taken away our petís natural diet and caused most of todayís problems.

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