This post is for you if you’re interested in feeding your dog or cat a raw diet or if you’re already feeding raw and want a good deal on pre-made food.
Balanced Blends is offering “starter packs” of raw food for those who would like to give raw feeding a try. You can order 2 pounds of raw food for your dog and get FREE SHIPPING when you use code STARTERPACK at checkout. Click here.
I really love the idea of feeding all my pets a raw diet.
I enjoy feeding them raw meat and bones and watching them be the meat eaters they’re designed to be.
Perhaps I should’ve been a zoo keeper? Perhaps I watched the Discovery Channel too much as a child? I’m not sure.
I do know dogs and cats are meant to eat raw meat, and raw pet food companies make life easier for pet owners.
Balanced Blends offers:
1.Deliveries right to your door. Saves time, energy and stress. You can order once or you can set up a subscription for regular deliveries (easy to pause, cancel, edit or postpone).
2.Properly balanced meals. If I feed a homemade raw diet, I worry that it’s not properly balanced and my dog is not getting the nutrients he needs over time. Balanced Blends removes that worry.
3.Extra safe raw food. The company calls its raw diets extra safe. This is because the diets are applied with high pressure processing (HPP) in their final packaging to eliminate the risk of recontamination from reprocessing the food again, after HPP, into patties or nuggets. The food is also tested by a third party and is only sold after the pathogen test results come back negative. This gives pet owners peace of mind.
4. Food that is 90% meat, organ and bone. The remaining 10% is fruits, veggies, vitamins and trace minerals. This is exactly how I prefer to feed a raw diet, with just a minimal amount of fruits and veggies. (The cat diets are 98% meat because cats are true carnivores.)
5. No ingredients from China. It’s not necessarily bad if a dog food company uses ingredients from China. But ever since so many dogs got sick from jerky treats sourced there, many pet owners are more comfortable knowing a company uses no Chinese ingredients.
6.Optimal calcium to phosphorus ratio. This is a concern of mine when feeding homemade raw. “Am I getting it right?”
7.Optimal Omega 6 to Omega 3 ratio. Another concern of mine when feeding homemade.
8.Free shipping when you order 20 pounds or more.
9.Transparency. The company is very straightforward with all of its ingredients, policies and how the food is made. If you have a question, just ask! You can leave them in the comments below if you’d like.
How much does it cost?
The price for Balanced Blends raw dog food ranges from $30 to $35 per 5 pounds of food. That equals $6 to $7 per pound (free shipping when you buy 20 pounds or more).
I know the cost of pre-made raw dog food is a common concern, so here are some ways to justify the cost and fit it into your budget.
How to justify the cost of raw dog food
1.Pre-made raw is a great way to get started. Use it to take away the stress about getting the right balance. Then, over a month or two you could switch your dog to a homemade raw diet as you get more comfortable with the concept of raw feeding in general.
2.Convenient when you’re short on time. Even if you prefer to feed homemade raw most of the time, on occasion it’s nice to have some food ready to go when you’re simply busy or stressed or don’t have a lot of time.
3.Feed occasionally for balance and variety. You could feed Balanced Blends every other meal or a few times per week to give your dog balance and variety.
4. Easier for travel. If you board your dog or leave her with a pet sitter, sometimes it’s easier if you can provide pre-made raw for the sitter. Or, if you’re traveling with your dog, you could have the food shipped directly to your destination. Much easier than packing raw food in a cooler!
How to get started – what questions do you have?
Do you have any questions about the company or how to get started feeding a raw diet? Just let me know in the comments below. I have several raw feeders who follow my blog, and they might chime in to answer your questions as well.
It might be a myth that 6 months is the age where dogs are more likely to get dropped off at shelters, I don’t know.
But … this is the age where they’re past the cute puppy stage. They might seem a little rebellious. They’re strong and usually untrained. More serious behavioral problems start to emerge if they’re going to. Things like leash aggression, possessiveness, separation anxiety.
I’m frustrated with Remy much of the time. He pulls on the leash, jumps on people, pees when he’s excited.
Last week we passed a couple with their pug in a narrow entryway and Remy did his “kangaroo hop” on his hind legs trying to get to them WHILE PEEING! Dear God.
On puppy class “graduation night” he ripped the trainer’s evaluation sheet right out of her hand and shredded it.
He has little impulse control, bites when he’s excited, yips in his kennel at 5 a.m. We can hike with him off-leash for an hour and he never gets tired.
So do any of you still want a puppy? 🙂
It helps to take note of the good moments.
My puppy has a nice temperament. He’s not overly assertive, not at all timid. My puppy loves every single person he meets – all ages, men, women, kids. Likewise, he loves every dog he meets. Even when older dogs get grumpy, he respects their space and backs off, wagging his little stub tail.
He has a solid “leave it.” It’s his best command.
While he does get up early, he sleeps all night without a peep.
He allows us to take away items from his mouth and to reach into his food bowl. He is not aggressive to our cats or our senior dog and hopes they will someday play or cuddle with him. Yet to be determined.
Remy rides nicely in the back seat of my car, doesn’t try to climb into the front.
He doesn’t seem to know he could hop right over the baby gate and doesn’t try.He hasn’t destroyed anything other than our leather leashes, which of course was my fault.
He’s getting better at “stay” and can sometimes stay for 2 minutes or so in the living room. That might not sound like a lot, but I’m proud of my high-energy guy.
He can walk as long as we’d like (I have yet to tire him out). He stays close when off leash. And he cooperates for pictures.
He lets us touch his paws, ears, nose, tail. He gets silly and squirms but is not aggressive.
He hangs out quietly in my office when I blog or work. He has an off switch, settles in and naps.
He’s resilient, not afraid of anything. Unfazed by firm corrections. If I lose my temper, he just wags his tail and licks my hand, like, hey don’t be so serious!
He’s in the “middle of the pack” with other dogs, almost on the slight submissive side but in a good way. He’s easygoing and friendly, plays gently with the shy or smaller dogs, does not challenge the more assertive dogs.
Remy is a very good dog. We’ve boarded him overnight a few times, and while he did just fine away from us, I missed him.
Yes, I have a LOT of work ahead still, but if you struggle with your puppy or dog like I do, know that it’s normal. It’s a work in progress for me too. I can always make improvements. And it’s more about improving my own attitude than it is about “improving” my dog.
I think how lucky I am to get to help the pup in front of me learn to be a good dog.
Remy … I’ll get there!
In the meantime, well … we’ll try to be patient with one another.
What challenges are the rest of you facing with your dogs at the moment?
Note: This post is sponsored by dogIDs. Use code THATMUTT to save 10% on all dogIDs products. Click here.
I’ve always wanted a leash embroidered with the words ADOPT ME for the shelter dogs I foster or walk.
I’m not great at starting conversations with strangers, but if a dog is wearing an ADOPT ME leash it welcomes people to ask to meet the dog or to ask questions about her.
And the more I thought about it, I realized an embroidered leash is helpful for a lot of different dogs, not just foster dogs.
What would your dog’s embroidered leash say?
dogIDs makes custom, embroidered dog leashes, so the message on your dog’s leash could say whatever you want!
The leashes are also American made, right in the dogIDs office in Fargo, N.D.
My dogs Ace and Remy do not have embroidered leashes (yet!) but they do wear embroidered collars from dogIDs. The nylon is tough, durable material. Remy pulls like crazy and his nylon collar is not fazed.
The hardware on the leashes is corrosion-resistant stainless steel. (dogIDs is in North Dakota, so they’re not joking around when they say their products will hold up to “the elements.”)
Reasons dogs may want to wear embroidered dog leashes:
The leash could say your dog’s name or your dog’s name and a phone number. I chose to include Remy and Ace’s names and my phone number on their collars, and that’s what I would probably put on their leashes too.
The messaging could simply say “WORKING DOG” or “SERVICE DOG” or “THERAPY DOG” or it could say DO NOT PET or PLEASE PET ME, depending on your dog’s line of work!
Space for aggressive or fearful dogs
Some dogs just need a little extra space from dogs or people during walks, so a message such as these could go a long way:
NO DOGS NO DOGS
DO NOT PET
SCARED SCARED SCARED
With the right color combination, the message can be read from a distance.
Medical issues such as allergies
If your dog has allergies or needs medication, those are things you could consider putting on her leash, depending on how serious her condition is.
BLIND BLIND BLIND
DEAF DEAF DEAF
Advertising a business or rescue group
If you own a pet-related business or a blog, you’d be surprised how much attention a message on the leash gets.
Ace used to wear a collar that said THATMUTT.COM and people would always ask me, what is that?
Also, when I started my dog running business Run That Mutt, I had several leashes embroidered with my business name and then gave those out to my clients. Everyone appreciates an extra leash and it was an easy way to advertise my business.
This could also be an easy way to advertise a rescue group or shelter. Wondering how you can donate something meaningful to a rescue? How about an embroidered leash?
What would you put on your dog’s leash?
Use coupon code THATMUTT for 10% off embroidered leashes at dogIDs.com. The code will also work for all other dogIDs products.
Note: This post is sponsored by Fruit Nibblers and Pipeline Pet Products.
I tell my puppy “NO!” plenty of times per day (probably 50 times, let’s be honest).
Sometimes “No!” is just the easiest way to get my point across in the moment, and it works.
For example, I see Remy about to pick up my shoe. I tell him “No” and usually it stops him.
But what it doesn’t do is stop him from attempting to steal my shoe again in 10 minutes or from stealing my shoe the next day.
So, the following are some examples where Fruit Nibblers treats have helped me reinforce the behavior I want so my weimaraner puppy will be more likely to repeat that behavior on his own in the future.
This is so much more effective long term than constant “nagging.” And it allows me to save my Mama Bear “NO’s!” for when they’re really needed—and yes, they’re needed!
[quote_right]Treats are oh so helpful when dogs are still learning.[/quote_right]They all work in their own ways to an extent, but the only time my puppy truly walks nicely on a leash is when I’m carrying treats and we’re both focused on practicing “heel.”
Obviously we all want our dogs to walk nicely without treats, but treats are oh so helpful when dogs are still learning and you need anything to make sure you’re more interesting than everything else.
3. For taking away bully sticks or rawhides.
I make a point to approach my puppy (so he can see me), remove his bully stick or rawhide, give him a treat and then give the bully stick right back. I might hold the stick for a second. “Oh, what a nice stick. What a good boy!” Then I give him a treat. And then I give him the bully stick back.
My puppy learns that I can take away items and it’s no big deal. Usually treats are involved. Awesome!
4. Reinforcing patience and calm behavior around my other dog.
I like to have both dogs sit in front of me, and then I give them treats one after the other for sitting patiently. “Oh what a good boy, Ace! Oh what a good boy, Remy!”
They learn not to be pushy and to wait their turns. It also helps them associate treats and good things with each other!
5. Reinforcing calm behavior when touching my puppy’s feet.
I have a squirmy, mouthy puppy who likes to bite and wiggle when I hold him. Thankfully, he’s not aggressive about it, just completely wiggly and out of control. So, treats are helpful for teaching my puppy good things happen if he can just sit still and let me touch his feet, his toenails, his collar or his teeth.
This is very challenging for Remy, but it all goes back to my first example of teaching self-control. My puppy is always going to have a LOT of energy (God help us), so teaching him how to manage that energy is very important.
Other examples where treats are helpful:
Rewarding my dog for going in his kennel
Rewarding him for lying down calmly in the living room while we watch TV
Rewarding him for focusing on me in public, like at a coffee shop or when we have visitors over and he’s on a leash
Coming when called!
Helping my puppy focus (sit/stay/watch) during photos
Blogger Lindsay Stordahl Lindsay Stordahl (with her mutt Ace) is the blogger behind That Mutt.
Blogger Julia Thomson Julia Thomson (with her mutt Baxter) writes regularly for That Mutt.
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