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Dr. Billinghurst's BARF DietFrequently Asked Questions - BARF Diet

How does the BARF DIET™ compare to the evolutionary diet?
Should I cook the patties?
How much should I feed my adult dog?
How much do I feed my puppy?
Do I need to supplement your BARF DIET™?
Can I feed processed foods with the BARF DIET™?
What about bacteria in raw foods?
Are there safe handling procedures for the BARF DIET™?
How are BARF World's BARF DIETS™ packaged?
There are bones in the BARF DIET™!
Why so many green leafy vegetables?
With no grains or starchy vegetables, where does my dog get it's energy requirements from?
Will Will BARF World's BARF DIET™ keep my dog's teeth clean?
Can I expect a change in stool volume?

How does the BARF DIET™ compare to the evolutionary diet?
The BARF DIET™ mimics the natural or evolutionary diet by using available appropriate uncooked foods. The natural environment is disastrous. It includes lack of shelter, starvation, attack by other predators and the complete lack of medical and surgical intervention. This is not what we want for our pets. We want an environment that optimizes health which includes a Biologically Appropriate Raw Food Diet.
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Should I cook the patties?
Cooking would render the food biologically inappropriate in a fundamental way. Cooked food loses much nutritional value, including enzymes and biologically active essential fatty acids. The latter, being damaged by heat and oxygen, become slow poisons, doing irreparable damage. Cooking causes complexes to form between proteins and starches, between vitamins and trace minerals, and between minerals. Cooking produces carcinogens and anti-immunogens. Many minerals, essential amino acids and vitamins also become indigestible.
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How much should I feed my adult dog?
Adult dogs can be fed between 2-3% of the their body weight. We recommend starting with 1/2 pound of food per 25 lbs of body weight daily and make adjustments according to your dog's age and activity. We also suggest that the daily ration be split to feed morning and night. Remember that a healthy dog is not overweight.
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How much do I feed my puppy?
BARF World recommends feeding puppies up to 10 % of their body weight. Therefore, if your pup weighs 10 lbs you should feed 1 lb of food divided between 3 or 4 feedings per day. Growing puppies, especially the large breeds, should be kept lean so adjustments to feeding amounts will have to be monitored closely.
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Do I need to supplement your BARF DIET™?
The BARF DIET™ looks to whole raw foods to supply nutrients. It is our aim - as much as is humanly possible - to source and use evolutionary foods. That is why we insist that a wide variety of nutritional foodstuffs make up the components of this diet. We do add some 'land and sea' green food concentrates such as alfalfa leaf and kelp to the diet. Some pets have specific conditions and situations which may require more or less of ingredients in the BARF DIET™. While we recommend that you consult your veterinarian, we do offer BARF supplements and free consultations with our pet nutrition expert.
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Can I feed processed foods with the BARF DIET™?
We do NOT recommend combining a raw food diet in the same meal as processed foods. The digestive rate for dry processed food is much longer than for raw foods which can cause digestive disturbances. While acknowledging wholesome foods as basic to their own health, many people still believe their pets will be healthiest when fed processed junk food. Not surprisingly, this simply isn't so. While not optimal, you can feed kibble and raw to pets as long as they are fed in separate meals ie kibble in the morning and raw at night. Some customers also ad our BARF supplements to kibble.
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What about bacteria in raw foods?
The presence of bacteria in raw food often worries pet owners and vets. They assume these bacteria will make pets sick. However, dogs, being scavengers, have evolved to eat and thrive on bacteria laden food, requiring them for immune system maturity. Wild dogs eat the gut contents of their prey, and the feces of many different animals. They eat soil, contaminated meat, buried bones, infected meat and so on. These are all a source of microbes and any toxins they might produce. That is why the bacteria in raw meat are of little to no consequence to ninety-nine plus percent of dogs. This does not mean we recommend bacteria laden food for our pets. What it does mean is that pets that have eaten commercial pet food for most of their life are safe eating raw food from clean sources.
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Are there safe handling procedures for the BARF DIET™?
Commonsense must prevail when handling raw meat. You do this all the time when you prepare a meal for the family. After handling raw meat for your pets, do wash your hands before eating your own food. Sterilize any knives, surfaces or utensils used in the preparation or handling of your pets' food. We recommend using a stainless steel dish, which is washed thoroughly with soap and hot water after every meal. Discard any uneaten food and store raw pet food in such a way it does not contaminate human food. After thawing the food, we recommend it is only kept in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. After thawing the food, we recommend it be kept in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. It's that simple!
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How are BARF DIETS™ packaged?
In patties of course! Each patty weighs 8 oz and each bag contains 12 patties. We use sturdy, freezer-friendly poly packaging that reduces environmental waste. Packages are date coded to comply with our extensive trace back system, which allows complete tracking of all raw materials from sourcing to finished product.
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There are bones in the BARF DIET™!
It is natural for both dogs and cats to eat bones. Both a dog's body and a cat's body are designed to use bones as its main source of minerals - including calcium and phosphorus. Our pets' bodies have been doing this for millions of years. Your pet will not suffer mineral deficiencies, imbalances or excesses, when raw meaty bones make up the bulk of its diet. This applies to all ages, and all breeds, including puppies and kittens. This is because bones are the storehouse of all the minerals your pet requires in perfect balance, and in the perfect form for optimal absorption. The bones in BARF World's products are very finely minced making them very safe to feed to your pets.
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Why so many green leafy vegetables?
Domestic pets should be getting their carbohydrate in a similar manner and balance to their wild ancestors. That means feeding  fresh, raw (non starchy-low glycemic) vegetables (and some fruit). The green vegetables contain only small amounts of starch and some simple sugars. More importantly they are chock full of enzymes, nutraceuticals, phytochemicals, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids.
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With no grains or starchy vegetables, where does my dog get it's energy requirements from?
When our pets eat dry pet food, most of their energy comes from carbohydrates. That is, from starch, and also, from added sugar. Both sugar and starch are damaging forms of carbohydrate that are biologically inappropriate for pet animals. Together, these two carbohydrates make an enormous contribution to the degenerative diseases in our pets. When pet animals eat their evolutionary diet (the BARF diet) their energy comes principally from protein and fat and very little from carbohydrate. Deriving their energy principally from fats and proteins is health promoting for our pets. Grains can cause sugar levels to rise and then quickly fall causing highs and lows in insulin levels. Grains contain very few vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals in comparison to vegetables.
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Will BARF DIET™ keep my dog's teeth clean?
The results are in and it's obvious that dog's fed a raw diet have much cleaner teeth. The processed or cooked foods eaten by dogs today are high in two substances; soluble carbohydrates and soluble calcium. These two nutrients attack a dog's mouth at every meal. In addition, processed foods do not contain the naturally occurring enzymes found in raw foods so necessary for clean teeth. Through the use of raw bones and a healthy BARF diet, your dog can have a sparkling smile!
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Can I expect a change in stool volume?
Depending on what your dog has presently been eating, stool size ins generally much more compact and odorless than when a dog has been fed processed pet foods. This is because our BARF diet contains no extra or unnecessary fillers or grains. Fillers and grains are much harder to digest and thus are eliminated from the body without being utilized- thus causing a more voluminous stool. The stool color may vary somewhat depending on which protein source is being fed.
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