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My Scottie's Diet

My Scotties come running when they here "DINNER"

Feeding is a controversial area. I didn't know if I wanted to risk talking about this important area of care. However I have found that new puppy owners are taking their duty of care with their new puppies very seriously and like to be guided by their puppy's breeder. So I have decided to simply share information about what I do. 

I believe in feeding a raw meat and bone diet balanced with a small amount of various vegetables and some fish. Because I am into natural and homemade things I dehydrate my own chicken livers, hearts and giblets as treats for my dogs, rather than buying commercial, highly processed treats that often contain unnecessary sugars or salts. And guess what..... it's cheaper! Dehydrators can be purchased for around $40 and they pay for themself in no time.  You can also dry chicken livers in the oven quite successfully. Another thing they love out of the dehydrator is boiled BBQ sausages, sliced thin and dehydrated. 

Feeding a completely raw meat and bone diet can be easily managed. You will need to source your meat thoughtfully. I do not recommend pet meats as they often have large amounts of preservatives added to mask rancid meats. Remember that Pet meats are not regulated in Australia. Therefore, pet meat companies are free to add whatever preservatives they deem necessary to make their products seem fresh. I have always been able to buy fresh whole drumsticks and human grade meats from supermarkets and Butchers quite reasonably. Scotties are essentially omnivores, so to provide a balance diet, raw meat and bone should be accompanied by some veggies. A little fish every now and then will also provide omega 3. Does all this sound too hard? A little room in your freezer can make feeding very simple. 

My Scotties consume around 100 to 130g of human grade red meat each day, and about 30 to 50g of vegetables, 10 to 20g offal and occasionally some sardines. They also have one chicken wing per day. 

I feed my Scotties twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening. They have red meat, offal, veggies for breakfast, occasionally swapping out the offal for sardines. Then they have a chicken wing for their evening meal. This allows fasting between meals for optimum digestion and rest for the digestive system. It is important not to allow Scotties to graze all day long. Having continual access to food leads to obesity and all the related health problems that go along with that.

I do understand that convenience is part of our decision making process in today's busy lifestyles. Feeding a natural raw diet does require some planning, sourcing and preparation. If you have a freezer then it won't be too bad. I strive to make feeding as uncomplicated as possible. For example, my local supermarket sells bags of fresh chicken wings. I buy them, bring them home and freeze them individually to ensure they stay fresh. I actually feed them completely frozen to my Scotties. It is like having a chicken icy-pole. It ensures they always have fresh human grade chicken wings, it provides excellent balance of protein and calcium and chomping on frozen meaty bones provides excellent dental hygiene and exercise for the jaws. And guess what? They love em! and it's easy...! 

My local supermarket is now selling containers of fresh chicken hearts, livers and giblets. These are easily added fresh to daily meals or dehydrated or baked in the oven for treats.

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Cans of sardines in spring water are also readily available in supermarkets. I add them to my Scotties breakfast once or twice a week.

Veggies... best organic home grown veggies! In a perfect world achievable. I try to provide fresh veggies as often as I can, but, let's face it, modern busy lives make that a little less achievable. I have to admit that I cheat from time to time! I buy frozen veggies from the supermarket. They are nutritious and most importantly, it is easy, clean and convenient.

I have been following this feeding regime for a long time. I also monitor my Scotties health and wellbeing very closely. I have noticed significant benefits to this diet that should not be ignored. Scotties do very well on this diet. They are full of energy and vitality. They enjoy keen senses and mental clarity. Other benefits include, healthy lawns that are not dappled by burnt areas from urination. Scotties fed on a raw diet of mostly meat and bone, drink less, urinate less, and their urine is actually better for the environment. And guess what? They poop less, and poops are less stinky! 

It seems obvious to me that a diet that is larger in volume going in, with smaller volume coming out, indicates that the system is effectively using the fuel that is being put in, rather than just passing it through.These observations indicate that my Scotties are getting more out of this diet than any dog gets out of artificial diets.

You will be given a printed copy of your puppy's specific diet once your puppy reaches 6 weeks of age. You should continue to feed them the same diet until they are settled in with their new family and home. Once your new puppy seems confident and adventurous in their new environment, you can then gradually make changes to their diet that suit your lifestyle after that.

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HOW MUCH to feed

Questions I am often asked include "HOW MUCH DO I FEED"? and "HOW OFTEN"? I think these are valid questions from new puppy owners and it shows their concern for the optimum wellbeing of their puppies! It is important to keep our dogs within a healthy weight range. An adult Scottie should weigh between 8kg to 10kg.

Scotties should eat around 300g of meat and bone per day.  I do not suggest that you have to weigh your dog's food every day but it is a good practice when you start out or when you are freezing meats in daily portions for example. This way you will soon get to know the right amount. The amount will also depend on their activity level so if they are too thin and more active, feed more or if they are gaining too much or they are less active, cut back! I have an adult male Scottie that eats 200g of human-grade red meat with a little veg and a couple of sardines every morning for breakfast. In the evening he has a chicken wing. This amount keeps him in perfect fettle. I have an adult bitch however, that only needs 140g of human-grade red meat, veggies and sardines for breakfast each day and a chicken wing in the evening. This amount seems to suit her activity level and metabolism. I have another adult bitch that is a little more active and she has 180g or human-grade red meat, veggies and sardines for breakfast and a chicken wing in the evening. So I hope this example will help! At you vet visit if you ever need one, your vet will most likely inform you if they feel you are feeding too much. If your Scottie starts looking like a wombat you are probably over feeding. They should have a slight waist line.

The 300g per day applies to all ages. Even your young puppy needs to consume this amount. It is only because puppies have a much smaller tummy that we divide their 300g meal into 4 smaller portions a day to begin with. This makes it easier for puppy to digest smaller amounts and feeding at regular intervals throughout the day also means that puppy is receiving an even energy intake to support healthy growth and development. 

Puppy's meal size can be increased and the frequency of feeding reduced as they grow. So until your puppy reaches 3 month of age they should be eating 3 to 4 times a day, from 3 months to 6 months they can go to twice a day which is the best for active small to medium breeds. I believe that larger breeds can manage one meal a day. 

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HOW OFTEN to feed

Fasting is natural to a dog’s physiology. Some dogs will naturally fast themselves, which usually distresses their owners. This is unlikely for Scotties, but sometimes they skip a meal here and there, this is nothing to worry about. Sometimes they may be experiencing minor digestive upset which they take in their stride. Fasting mimics what would happen in nature and it gives the digestive system a break. So don’t fret if your dog doesn’t eat for a day. Some experts even recommend fasting dogs one day a week, perhaps just giving them a recreational bone to gnaw on that day. If your Scottie refuses meals they will always start eating within three days. If it persists you need to seek medical advice.

I feed twice a day. Human-grade red meat, veggies and sardines for breakfast and a chicken wing for tea.

Dogs are omnivores and are built for periods of gorging and fasting. Not grazing all day like a cow. The majority of their immune function is performed in the gut. If their digestive system is continually working, which is the case with grazing or leaving food available all the time, there is no time for maintenance and their immune system may suffer. So feed intermittently, separate meal times. Remove uneaten portions after 5 minutes. At least once a week you can turn your Scottie out with a nice meaty bone to chew on, instead of breakfast. 

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SUPLEMENTS

Apple Cider Vinegar added to your dog's food or water bowel adds acidity to your dog's blood which makes them less appealing to ticks, fleas and worms. Acidity also guards against bacteria and yeast infections.... no more ear infections!

(RDI for your Scottie  1/2 tsp per day)

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Bone Broth is good for whatever ails your dog! It supports healthy joints. It super amazing amounts of natural glucosamine, it's also packed with other joint protecting compounds like chondroitin and hyaluronic acid. It helps the liver to detox. It also promotes a healthy gut and has loads of calcium. Make some today! I put 6 or 8 chicken drumsticks or 2 or 3 carcasses in either a slow cooker overnight. Once you have cooked, cool and strain liquid and refrigerate. you will find that when cold it will have a jelly like consistency and you can pour it over your Scottie's meals.

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Garlic is a healthy addition to your dog's diet as long as you don't over do! It is antibiotic, prebiotic, antifungual and antiparasitic. It supports beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract and eliminates harmful bacteria. It guards against fleas, ticks and worms. It prevents the formation of blood clots, decreases cholesterol build up, widens blood vessels and helps prevent the formation of tumours. It stimulates the lymphatic system to remove wastes.

(RDI  1/4 clove per day)

Do not give garlic under 12mths of age.

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Pumpkin seeds are amazing for your Scottie! Use them to eliminate worms. I can definitely attest to the effectiveness of raw, pumpkin seeds as a parasitic treatment on both humans and Scotties. They have been used to cure kidney ailments and urinary problems. They are an effective deworming agent against tapeworms and other intestinal parasites. They are loaded with protein, amino acids, fibre, iron, copper, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, zinc, potassium, folic acid and niacin, all important nutrients for your dog's overall good health.

They can be fed whole as a treat. Don't feed them the salted type from the grocery store, find some raw pepitas instead. If your dog doesn't enjoy them as a treat you can grind them in a coffee grinder or a magic bullet or a thermomix and add them to their meals.

To eliminate worms  (RDI for your Scottie, 2 tsp once or twice a day until they are rid of the parasites)

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Parsley is more than just a breath freshener! It is packed with chlorophyll which improves digestion. Chlorophyll increases oxygen utilisation in your dog's body. It also breaks down calcium oxalate stones in the bladder. Importantly, chlorophyll reduces the ability of carcinogens to bind with DNA in the liver and other organs. Dogs have the right idea when they eat grass, but the sad truth is that they do this because they have no other source of green plants. So give them parsley! You can use dried if no fresh is available.

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Oats have many benefits for our Scotties health. They are anti-inflammatory and calming so add a sprinkle daily. Not only are oats a good source of protein, they provide soluble fibre, iron, manganese, zinc, B vitamins and Folate. Oats act as a great nerve tonic. They benefit the skin, nervous system, stomach, spleen, lungs, urinary and reproductive systems.

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EGGS

Eggs are best whole and raw!

When feeding your dog eggs on a regular basis, simply make sure they get the whole egg, not just the white. Eggs do contain salmonella but dogs are well equipped to handle the bacteria in raw foods.

If you give your dog eggs with the shell on, they are a nearly complete food. It is especially a great idea to feed eggs shell and all as the shells can provide lots of calcium especially good for dogs that struggle with eating bones. It is recommended to dry the shells out and grind them into a powder and sprinkle the powder on your dog’s food (my scotties did not like this and refused food laced with ground egg shells..... I guess just try and see, don't add to much!).  Eggs are cheap, available and they provide an excellent source of nutrition for your dog. The health benefits of eggs certainly outweigh the risks – and feeding eggs whole, the way nature intended, goes a long way to counteract harmful imbalances.                    

Try feeding your Scotties an egg or two per week and you’ll see better health, inside and out.

Some people believe that eggs are too high in cholesterol and they pose a risk of salmonella. This is simply not true! Eggs are affordable and a safe source of raw food for your dog, they are one of the most complete and nutritious meals you can choose! Eggs are an important source of nutrition and are also one of the most complete sources of amino acids, the building blocks of protein. They are a good source of: Vitamin A, Riboflavin, Folate, Vitamin B12, Iron, Selenium and Fatty Acids.

Egg whites also contain enzyme inhibitors which can interfere with digestion but that just means that eggs should not be the mainstay of the diet. It is perfectly safe to feed a couple of eggs a week to the average dog.  If you don’t see evidence of digestive upset when feeding eggs to dogs, then they should have no trouble if eggs are a regular part of their diet.

From 7 weeks of age a Scottie can manage a raw chicken drumstick and love it! They may leave the very middle bone segment which can be taken away until they are old enough to devour the lot!

I do not claim that the diet I provide for my dogs is what everyone should feed. It is what I am feeding my Scottish Terriers and I have included it on my website as an example to help you get started if you want to offer a real food diet to your Scottie.

Please visit Calanclan Blogs and check out 'Paw Prints On Our Hearts' ... PODCASTS, for new ideas and shared discoveries from other breeders... we never stop learning!

Drumsticks
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Uncooked Poultry
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