The Dog's Dinner - by Ann Ridyard

Raw feeding for dogs

Initial reactions that may worry the owner of the newly    swapped dog..........


This page is all about poops and puke and gibby stuff !!!

For the vast majority of dogs swapping to raw, non of the problems below may be seen at all, but for some, mistakes will be made by the owner, which could cause the dog to have a reaction.

Also - whilst we can set guidelines out that will suit the vast majority, some dogs fall outside this umberella and the owners may see disapointing initial results  and this is not always the fault of the owner.           

 OK, so with the newly swapped dog, a number of things could happen, which are all classed as a normal reaction.  Some owners will be very lucky and will see an almost immdiate improvement to their dog's poops, they will firm up and reduce in size almost overnight, for others it will be slightly different.  

So what might we expect to see in the poop department?

Loose stools

Are considered to be a perfectly normal reaction to a dog swapping to raw, this can even result in full blown diarrhoea and is very often the fault of the owner!

Many dogs who experience a reaction like this have been given too much too soon, or they have been given something innappropriate to begin.

Foods high in fat will cause runny stools, as will the introduction of too many proteins at once, this is why when starting your dog on the raw diet, it is best if you introduce one protein at a time. Please see the QUICKSTART guide.

But what if I have followed the quickstart and my dog still has runny stools/dearrhoea What then ??

Well first of all - you must look at the quantity you have fed - overfeeding can very often result in sloppy poops

How bad is it? Is it just a bit sloppy like a cow pat - or is it like water and uncontrolable?

If it is sloppy then introduce more bone - you could add a chicken wing or two to the next feed, just to firm things up a bit. Bone plays a huge role in the way and form a dog's poops are, if you don't include enough of it then and what you have fed is rich, or fatty, then this is a recipie for loose stools in the newly swapped dog - even long time raw fed dogs can still get the odd loose stool, depending on what has been fed.

Diarrhoea, which is full blown water and continues for more than a day and cannot be stopped by feeding bone, needs to be checked out by a vet as your dog could dehydrate if this persists.


Yellow stools

Are quite normal and indicate that there is a lot of chicken in the dog's diet.


White, crumbly stools

Again, quite normal, but indicates that the dog has eaten quite a lot of bone.  For the newly swapped dog in the first few weeks poops like this are fine  as more variety is introduced colours and consistencies will change. 

What you don't want is for your dog to be pooping out white crumbly stools after he has been completely swaped, a few months down the line -  this indicates that you are generally feeding too much bone and not enough meat!


Black or very dark stools

Are quite normal and indicate that the dog has eaten red meats or organ meat.


Black runny stools

Anything that resembles tar indicates that too much red meat or organ meat has been fed and not enough bone. (it also means you are going too fast !!  So slow down !!


Stools which contain bits of bone 

Are quite normal for the newly swapped dog and indicate that his system has not quite mastered the art of completely digesting them yet..........But don't let this put you off !!!  IT IS NORMAL to see bone fragments and a few weeks/months down the line when his system is completely reawakened and is functioning like the proper little carnivore he is, you will no longer see them as he will have completely digested them

Chicken bones are the softest and easiest to digest, so always start with these if you are concerned.  You may see the same thing happen again when you feed a harder, more dense bone, like pork or even lamb.  Eventually it will no longer happen and even if it does, it is no cause for great concern. 


Stools which contain mucus 

Are quite normal and indicate that the dog could be detoxing, small amounts or spots of blood can also occassionally be seen - read more HERE on detox. 


Stools which contain worms

Are quite normal and indicate that the dog could be detoxing, they have NOT been caused by feeding your dog raw, on the contrary, the raw diet has helped to rid your dog of his worm burden   - read more HERE on detox.

Click HERE to see pics of poops  and the effect feeding different items can have. 


And what may we expect to see in the puke department?



Vomiting his dinner straight back up again.

This is something that is often seen in the newly swapped dog, or even the long term raw fed and it indicates that you have a greedy pig !!  

The dog ate his dinner way too quickly ........ or he didn't chew it properly - if it was a chicken wing, this can put the fear of God into some owners, who stress that the dog is choking.  If it's a steaming pile of mincey puke then the owners first reaction is to remove it - Please DONT - just ignore your dog and let him have a 2nd attempt at it, next time it will stay down!

If you are worried  - either set about the wing or bone with a rolling pin, or hand on to the end of the item so you dog has to chew it.

This behaviour doesn't worry me and will often cease, once the dog realises that this is his diet forever and not just an occassional treat, you may take back.

This young man was presented with a whole chicken, he was unfortunately getting eyeballed by the new kitten while he was 'inhaling' it - the fact that the kitten was in the same room made him bolt the whole chicken down way too quickly and resulted in him not really chewing it ........His system objected to this and insisted he bring the whole thing straight back up again, which he promptly did and the picture on the right shows his efforts!   - this is classic regurgitation and absolutely nothing to worry about


TIPS to stop a gulper 

  • Feed dog separately to other dogs, he may fear it being stolen, which could cause him to eat faster.

  • Stuff kongs with mince, freeze and serve - this will take much longer for him to eat.

  • Serve items semi frozen


Vomiting bits of bone

 When a newly swapped dog cannot quite cope with the digestion of bone, some may be present in a bile like liquid your dog may bring up.

  It is your dogs way of coping and dealing with his new diet and again is one of those things that will disapear once your dog's digestive system is working more efficiently. 

It may happen with the introduction of a denser bone, or it may happen with something as soft as a chicken wing - it is not a cause for concern and will soon stop happening once the dog is fully swapped and completely transition a few months down the line, or you may only ever see this happen once or twice.

If it happens continually - look at the bone content of your dogs diet with a view to slightly reducing it. 


Vomitting bile in between meals, or in the morning 

Hunger pukes can strike any dog whether raw fed or not, this is often very easily solved by splitting the dogs rations and feeding smaller meals throughout the day, changing the times at which you feed will also help.

With the newly swapped dog hunger pukes can happen to many, as up to this point the dog has been fed a diet containing carbohydrates, which being totally unsuitable for his system, have taken the dog longer to digest and given him a 'fuller for longer' feeling which his system has wrongly become accustomed to.

As raw food is suitable for his system, he will digest it a lot more quickly, which could leave his tummy feeling empty until it has time to adjust to his new diet.