Properly Balancing Raw /Fresh Food - Commercial Brands
This page is dedicated to ensuring your fresh pet food is balanced to a certified guideline like NRC or AAFCO. This is important to ensure the longevity of your pets health and well being, and to further ensure your health care professionals are confident in what you are feeding.
As the raw food industry is one that is unregulated, it's hard to know when a label says "balanced" whether it's balanced to any particular standard or whether it's a term the manufacturer has chosen to put on their food based on their own beliefs. Some folks believe balanced is 80/10/10. (just meat organs and bones) but when you're attempting to mimic the balancing of kibble to an AAFCO standards it's best to include fruits and veggies and some other synthetics to ensure your pet is getting all the daily nutritional requirements
These are in order of confidence of balance.
NOTE: Any brand selling meat/organ/bone as "balanced" is not correct based on AAFCO or NRC requirements. You are missing essential vitamins, minerals etc. when you omit fruits and veggies.
BIG COUNTRY RAW:
Dinners are certified to NRC guidelines. Pure diets are not a balanced meal.
- Add an omega oil to either of the above options.
- Add Fortify powder to the Signature Blends and Pure blends.
Follow this link for more information:
*omega-3 not required when feeding sardines or fish dinner
PRIMAL PET FOODS:
The Primal balanced meals are AAFCO certified. We only suggest adding an omega oil or fresh fish option. This includes Nuggets and Pronto options. Not the butchers blend.
TOM & SAWYER:
This is a gently cooked, fresh food. This product has been balanced to NRC standards using necessary vitamins and minerals and can be fed as is to meet the guidelines. An omega-3 oil or fresh fish is a great additive.
More info here:
MEGA RAW / SELECT RAW:
Bold Raw makes Megadog line (more Fruits and veg) and the Bold Select line (just meat, more tripe than Megadog). To balance out this brand to get close to AAFCO they suggest:
- With rotation our formulas will be very close to AAFCO/NRC, we recommend the customer rotate between Mega & Select. To achieve this, Select must be added to the rotation because of the benefits and high tripe content. We typically suggest a diet consisting of 3 Meals of Select and 3 Meals of Mega, while rotating between the proteins.
- If only one protein can be fed, for example, Chicken; Bold suggests adding fish oil! It should be a blended oil, not just Salmon or Herring.
Carnivora Dinners contain little fruits and veg. Carnivora diets are pure meat/Organ/Bone.
- Carnivora considers the whole animal diet a balanced meal, but we would disagree. If you choose to feed this brand add Earth Origins to the Diet meals. Add an omega oil to all options.
Doodle Dogs does not consider these balanced. More information if found here from Carnivora: