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Brief Introduction


Why is a raw diet recommended?


The Integrated Taxonomic Information System has taxonomically classified dogs as Canis lupus familiaris; this classification is a subspecies of the wolf (Canis lupus).  Scientists have named at least 38 different subspecies of wolves.  This means that the dog (Canis lupus familiaris), the artic wolf (Canis lupus arctos), the Mackenzie Valley wolf (Canis lupus occidentalis), etc. fall under the genetic umbrella of the gray wolf, Canis lupus.

Animals have two types of DNA, nuclear (nDNA) and mitochondrial (mtDNA).  Nuclear DNA is found in the nucleus of a cell.  The genes coded for by nDNA are responsible for external or phenotypic characteristics and for behavior, while they also have important regulatory functions inside the cells.  Mitochondrial DNA is separate and distinct from nDNA and is found in the mitochondria of the cell.  The gene coding here is primarily regulatory for
cell metabolism, including those responsible for the conversion of food to usable energy.

So, how closely does our canine partner’s mtDNA match that of a wolf’s?  Robert K. Wayne, Ph.D., a canid biologist and molecular geneticist from UCLA, stated: 


The domestic dog is an extremely close relative of the gray wolf, differing from it by at most 0.2% of mtDNA sequence.  In comparison, the gray wolf differs from its closest wild relative, the coyote, by about 4% of mitochondrial DNA sequence. . . .  Dogs are gray wolves, despite their diversity in size and proportion . . .” 


(Wayne, Robert K. “Molecular Evolution of the Dog Family.”  Trends in Genetics. 9.6 (June 1993): 220, 218-224.)


Physiologically wolves are carnivores and since 99.8% of a dog's mtDNA is wolf, then that means that dogs are carnivores.  As such, then it becomes abundantly clear that a dog's diet should mimic the diet of a wolf.  So here's how to feed the best diet to your domesticated wolf:

How to Get Started on the Prey-Model Raw Dog Food Diet


·  Sign up as a member on the Yahoo Rawfeeding group at:  Or, if you are a Facebook fan, join the Facebook Raw Feeding (RF) group at:

·  If you sign up for the Yahoo Rawfeeding group, you will receive by e-mail some website links which have informational reading material.  If you sign up for the Facebook Raw Feeding (RF) group, be sure and read the "Files" section.  Read every single page.  This is where you will get a good overview of the diet.  This will probably consume several nights of reading, but be committed and read it all.

·  Read the daily posts to the Yahoo group or the Facebook group for at least a couple of weeks.  A lot of the questions will be repetitive, but this will just reinforce what you are learning.


·  Calculate your dog’s dietary needs by weight.  By weight, most dogs need from 2% to 3% of their ideal adult weight.  If older, start at 2%, if young and energetic start at 3%.  Smaller breeds start at 3%.  Then adjust as needed. 


·  Feed 80% meat; 10% bone; and 10% organ (with 5% of the organ being liver).


·  Bone is what firms the stools.  Too little bone and you get loose stools; too much bone and stools are white and hard.  Therefore, in order to avoid loose stools at first, you may need to start with a higher percentage of bone and then decrease to 10% as your dog adjusts to its new diet.


·  First start by feeding just raw meat and raw bone.  Once this is well tolerated for several days without loose stools, slowly start adding a little liver, organ, and other meat variety.

·  Remember that the feeding regimen motto is “balance over time.”  Every meal doesn't have to be perfect.  After all, you do not eat a balanced diet every meal, but over time you do.


·  Do not feed “weight-bearing” bones from ungulates. These “weight-bearing” bones could cause teeth damage.


·  Do not buy meat labeled "plump and juicy" or "broth added."  Added chemicals and sodium are counterproductive.


·  Although dogs need some fat in their diet, do not go overboard on feeding fat or fatty skin. After all, lean meat has more vitamins and minerals; fat measurably less vitamins and minerals.  The meat from a kill by a wolf in the wild would generally be lean meat, so use that scenario as your model.


· You no doubt are eager to see the rewards of raw feeding.  Raw feeding can be a powerful tool to improve your dog’s health.  So powerful that you may see external signs that your dog is going through a detoxification process.  Therefore, for older dogs, sick dogs, and constitutionally weak dogs, transition to raw slowly.  You want the detoxification process to be gradual—something that their system, in its weakened condition, can handle.


·  Finally, think--"What would a wolf eat?"


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