Can you mix raw and cooked dog food?

Since many pet parents are torn up on feeding raw and cooked food, some opt to mix these both delicacies. But, is it possible to do that?

In this article, let’s look at whether you can mix raw and cooked dog food!


Photo by Zen Chung from Pexels

Is it ok to mix raw and cooked food?

It's perfectly fine to incorporate cooked chicken and other cooked ingredients into raw dog food. One thing to keep in mind is that adding a considerable quantity of "extras" to a diet might make it imbalanced. This is unlikely to be a concern if the cooked food is used as a topping to increase the palatability of a diet.

Besides that, you have to be more cautious when mixing these two diets. This is because when you combine too many items in raw food, it might become too rich for your dog, especially if you're new to the raw food scene.

What can I mix with raw dog food?

There are many unique ingredients that you can include in your dog’s raw food. Here are a few examples that you can try out:

  • Coconut oil 
  • Fish oil 
  • Meal toppers
  • Bone broth 
  • Carrots 

To get a better grasp on what you can mix into your dog’s raw food, read our guide on it.

Should I feed my dog raw chicken?

Yes, feeding your pet raw chicken provides them with many health benefits. Raw chicken is a high-protein food.  Besides that, it's also low in calories, especially when it comes to lean cuts like chicken breast. Compared to other fattier protein sources such as beef and lamb, the difference is noticeable.

If you are unsure of how to prepare raw chicken for your dog, try out PetCubes’ Raw Chicken. This meal is super easy to make and filled with nutrients that will boost your pup’s health.

Can you mix raw food with wet food?

Yes, as long as the wet food is good to an excellent grade. The only reason you'd feed them simultaneously is to help your pup transition from wet to raw food.

If you've been feeding raw food for a week or month and have run out and will be preparing a fresh batch shortly, this is a more common necessity. You can give your dog wet food in the meanwhile. 

Can you cook raw dog food?

No, it is not advised to do so. Raw dog food is carefully selected, processed, and kept so that feeding it raw to dogs is entirely safe and delivers optimal nutrients in a digestible and attractive shape.

Cooking food of any kind does more than just heat it; it also affects the nutrient levels and modifies the food's properties, such as texture and flavor, on a cellular level.

It is meant to be fed raw, whether you carefully make your own raw dog food at home or pick a pre-packaged, ready-to-serve food that may be frozen for later use. Cooking removes essential nutrients that your dog requires to keep strong and healthy.

In addition, the heating process affects the bone structure, draining nutrients from the bone marrow and leaving the bones brittle and prone to splintering. Virtually all dog owners know that giving certain types of cooked bones to their dogs can be detrimental.

This impact is amplified when cooking meat with small, thin bones, such as chicken, which can break and splinter, thus posing a risk to your dog when swallowing. 

Cooking bigger bones may even be more dangerous because when they are cooked they will become tougher. This makes it hard for your dog to swallow and digest.

How often should dogs eat raw meat?

The quantity of food your dog requires is mostly determined by its size, breed, and age, as well as how often it exercises. So, when you mix raw meals with other food, you have to ensure it’s balanced. 

For example, puppies require more frequent little meals as they must eat to develop, yet they only have so much stomach room. So, you have to ensure you add equal parts of raw and other food into the meal.

The idea is to avoid overfeeding or underfeeding your dog. If you're ever doubtful, have your veterinarian examine your dog's diet and nutrition, as well as its physique and overall health.

Nevertheless, here’s a general rule of thumb on how much raw food you should feed your canine:

  • Adult dogs: They should consume about 2-4% of their optimum body weight each day 
  • Puppies: They need roughly 5-8 % of their body weight each day, spread out across 3-4 meals, starting at the age of 8 weeks.

How to mix raw dog food?

When mixing your dog’s raw food with other types of foods or parts, you have to be extra careful and practice handling raw meats safely. This is to decrease the risk of cross-contamination happening. Nonetheless, here’s how you can mix your pet’s meal:

  • 70 percent muscular meat
  • 10 percent raw edible bone
  • 5 percent liver
  • 5 percent other secreting organs
  • 7 percent vegetables
  • 2 percent seeds or nuts
  • 1 percent fruit

Conclusion 

You can try mixing raw and cooked food for your dog’s next meal. However, just be mindful of the amount of food you are adding to ensure your dog is not overfed.

Reviewed by: 

Dr Francis is one of the top wildlife nutritionists in Asia. Originating from Montreal, Canada, he left at 21 to pursue his Masters and subsequently a PhD in wildlife nutrition at Oxford Brookes University. Instead of taking the path of common animal science to learn about farm animals, or through the veterinarian space and taking a certificate in nutrition, he took the road less travelled to dive deep into the world of animal ecology, metabolism and nutrition.

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