My pups Missy & Buzz got their first raw meals in 2015, and our raw feeding journey has been an ongoing learning curve ever since. Today I’m sharing 7 of my favorite raw dog food accessories I’ve come to appreciate over the past 3 years
Supplies for feeding raw dog food: 7 accessories
1. Stainless Steel Bowls
One of my mantras of feeding raw dog food is keeping our meal prep space and eating areas clean to avoid potential bacterial growth, and – quite frankly – because I’m a neat freak and dirty dog food dishes are a pet peeve of mine. ANY dirty dishes, really.
So it’s a no-brainer that Missy’s & Buzz’s bowls get washed after every meal, either by myself or the dishwasher. The ones I currently have for the pups are about 6 years old and I’ve washed them twice per day every day of those 6 years. At 2,190 days (365 days x 6 years) and 4,380 times of contact with hot soapy water, they STILL look like they’re brand spanking new.
I prefer stainless steel bowls over plastic ones because they’re essentially indestructible, super easy to clean, and dishwasher safe.
2. Sharp Knives & Scissors
Sharp knives are an absolute necessity whenever I feed raw meat that hasn’t been pre-ground and put together for me. That’s the case when I buy larger cuts of meat or whole animals such as chickens or turkeys at a local grocery store, and when I get a raw dog food shipment I ordered online. It’ll typically consist of a variety of cuts of meat that still need portioning. I’m thinking of larger hearts such as beef or goat hearts, beef cheeks and lungs, or turkey gizzards.
I found that certain knives work better on certain cuts of meat – bread knives for example are wonderful to cup up tougher meat such as beef tongue, beef cheek, beef backstrap, tracheas, or pork jowls, whereas carving knives are great for cutting up larger hearts, liver, and breast meat.
After a few frustrating approaches of trying to cut up lung using knives, I had a major AHA moment when I decided to try my luck with scissors. They cut through lung’s sponge-like consistency like nothing else!
3. Food Scales
I own a digital food scale and a manual food scale. They’re both great at ensuring I measure out the right amount of food at mealtime and whenever doing batch meal prep. That’s the case when I receive a larger raw food delivery and when I’m putting meals together for a time frame during which I’ll be out of town and a pet sitter will be feeding Missy & Buzz. I won’t expect them to put together the pups’ meals, and it’s peace of mind for me knowing the pups are getting the right amount of food.
The one advantage of the manual scale over the digital one is that it doesn’t run out of battery juice.
4. Sturdy Wood Cutting Board
My favorite wood cutting board measures a little over 1 inch in thickness, which means it’s heavy enough not to slide on my counters when I’m cutting up raw meat.
It can’t go into the dishwasher since it’s made of wood, so I hand wash it with hot soapy water. It’s important to let it air-dry completely before putting it away to avoid bacterial growth. I actually have enough counter space to store it with air circulation in mind, leaning against the fridge.
About once a month I treat it with mineral oil to ensure that the wooden surface stays smooth and doesn’t crack, which prevents bacteria buildup.
5. Food Storage Containers
I’ve accumulated a large variety of food storage containers over the past 3 years of feeding raw. I use the smallest ones to store pieces of liver or an organ grind I buy online (it’s called Monstermash by Raw Feeding Miami).
The largest ones are perfect to accommodate raw meaty bones such as whole chicken leg quarters or turkey wings. The medium size ones hold smaller raw meaty bones like duck heads or chicken feet, cut up muscle meat, and pre-portioned raw meals.
On days when it’s nice outside, the pups get to enjoy their raw meaty bones outside in our back yard. But whenever I feed raw meaty bones inside, I place a towel under them that the pups know to eat from. Once they’re done eating, I simply toss the towel(s) into the wash. I have about 10 older towels that have been turned into doggie towels over the years.
7. Freezer Space
I still don’t have a freezer chest designated entirely for the pups’ raw meat hauls, but I do have a decent amount of freezer space in my side-by-side refrigerator. That’s important, especially on days when I get raw food shipments that I have to store until meal prep day.
Do you have any favorite accessories or supplies for feeding raw dog food?
In the comments, let us know if you have any suggestions or questions.
Barbara Rivers writes regularly for That Mutt about feeding her two boxer mixes a raw dog food diet. She is a blogger and dog walker and maintains the blog K9s Over Coffee.
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