Complete Guide to Feeding Raw Dog Food

How to Start Feeding Raw

BJ’s Raw Pet Food knows that feeding raw can be overwhelming for a pet owner. There’s so much information to consume and so many options. How do you know where to start when asking the question of how much raw food should you be feeding your dog?

Our raw dog food calculator gives you the ability to do just that. You can find out exactly how much raw dog food you should be feeding your dog!

Dogs are family, they are lives that we are responsible for. That’s why we believe that our furry companions should be fed the best and at the ideal amounts. Using our raw dog food calculator will help you properly feed your dog the right amounts of raw food and help them boost their quality of life. 

Years of Research

After countless years of research on pet health with leading scientists like Dr. Bilinghurst, it's clear that across the board, feeding raw is significantly superior to artificial, burnt, brown, crunchy, over-processed kibble. In fact, feeding raw is directly connected to positive outcomes like healthier coats and longer lifespans. Dr. Bilinghurst is the leader in healthy nutrition programs for dogs. His BARF Diet provides a balanced diet for your pets which can help obesity, arthritis, allergies, diabetes and more diseases and illnesses.

A Change in Your Dog's Life

Feeding raw provides your dog(s) with the proper nutrients and enzymes they need, boost energy levels, and even promote healthy brain functions. Dogs are not meant to eat overly processed man-made kibble, and that’s why raw is the best option for a healthy dog. Raw foods consist of organ meats like liver, kidney and hearts. Whole chicken, beef, pork, and seafood. Whole or ground bone and even dog-safe fruits and vegetables. 

You’ll see a drastic difference in your furry family members after switching to a raw dog food diet. Shinier coats, healthier skin, increased energy, and even improved dental health. Be your dog’s hero, see for yourself how a raw diet can make a change in your dog’s health. 

Raw Feeding Calculator

Feeding Raw To Different Dog Breeds

All breeds are different and require different raw feeding strategies. Answering the question “How much raw food should I feed my dog?” can be tricky for many reasons, one of them being how the breed of your dog affects how much raw food you should be feeding it. 

We’re going to talk through size and breeds here to help you know exactly how much raw dog food you should be feeding your furry friend so they have the happy and healthy life that they deserve!


Feeding Raw To Medium Dog Breeds

A medium dog breed weight is usually between 20-60 lbs. Just like the name entails, a medium sized dog is not small but not big. The most common medium sized dogs are goldendoodles, labradoodles, and poodles. On the other end of the spectrum, the expensive ones like samoyeds, chow chows, and french bulldogs can cost you a pretty penny. Most dogs fit into the medium breed category so pay close attention to this raw feeding guide if you have a medium sized dog breed. 

Feeding Raw To Medium Breed Puppies

Your medium dog breed puppy will soon grow to be a young adult but for now, it needs all the nutrients and energy it can get to grow. With puppies that are medium sized, BJ’s recommends feeding raw anywhere from 2-3x the amount of raw dog food that a dog of the same weight would eat. For example a puppy that weighs 10 pounds would need to eat 2-3x the amount of raw dog food that a 10 pound adult dog would eat. If your puppies are between 0-4 weeks, feed them 3 to 4 times a day for a proper diet. 

Feeding Raw To Medium Breed Adult Dogs

Your medium sized lovable furball is now an adult. You might be wondering what changes? The most important thing is… yes you guessed it, dietary habits. Weighing in at 20-60 pounds, your dog will be brimming with energy. That's why to support their active lifestyle, you will need to up your pets food intake. BJ’s recommends a dog with a medium sized build to receive 2-5% of their body weight in raw food every day. If you are trying to put your dog on a diet and lose weight, you should lean towards the 2% side with increased exercise. If you want your dog to gain weight, then we suggest leaning towards 5% and bulking your raw food with extra fat and protein. 

Feeding Raw To Medium Breed Pregnant/Lactating Dogs

A very obvious change is a small increase in food intake. This modification to your pregnant dog’s diet ensures that she and her puppies get all the nutrients they need to develop healthily. You can continue feeding a regular diet to your dog for the first two trimesters (around 40 days). Once your dog enters the third trimester, she will need changes to her diet

The production of milk for dogs begins to increase during the third trimester. This process is physically demanding on your dog’s body and will take a toll on her energy levels if you don’t feed them properly. BJ’s recommends increasing the feeding amount to your pregnant dog by 5-10% once her third trimester starts. 

Feeding Raw To Medium Breed Senior Dogs

As medium sized dogs get their gray hair a number of things change for them: onset of obesity, arthritis, drop in cognition, and appetite loss become more and more common. Because of the loss in muscle mass that comes with age, you will need to feed your dog more protein, 50% more protein to be exact. With raw food, organ meats are common so promoting organ health won’t be hard. You will need to feed your aging dog raw food that can properly stimulate organ health. 

Raw food is a great source of protein as it comes packed with natural and fresh muscle meats. Organ health can also be a factor. Same as an adult dog, keep a close watch on underweight dogs and overweight dogs. Feed them 40% less in ounces to lose weight, and feed them 40% in ounces to gain weight. 

Taking care of a senior can be challenging but it doesn’t have to be. With this information, you can safely and successfully feed your senior dog! 

Feeding Raw To Help Your Dog Gain Weight

An important aspect of having a pet is making sure they are properly fed and kept at the appropriate weight. If you take a look at your dog and see your dog's ribs, spine, and pelvic bones prominently sticking out, you might have an underfed dog. Some more evidence of an underweight dog would be low energy, lost shine in their coat, and no evidence of fat on their body. If you observe any of these characteristics in your dog, consult with your vet to determine whether or not there is a medical cause other than underfeeding. You will need to start feeding your dog more if they are underweight and there are no other medical issues. 

In order for your dog to gain weight it will need to be fed more than the required amount it would need to maintain its weight. You don’t have to worry as underweight dogs can return to their normal weight with dedicated nutrition and care. You will need to feed your dog food that has a higher protein and higher fat content. This is also a perfect time to start feeding raw as you will need to feed your dog food with higher protein and higher fat. Begin with 90% and 10% of the raw food and gradually increase the proportion of raw food everyday until you’re eventually at 100% raw food. BJ’s also suggests feeding your dog a 40% increase in ounces of their recommended amount of food to help with the weight gain process. 

Feeding Raw To Help Your Dog Lose Weight

You might take a look at your chunky dog and think they’re cute just the way they are but they could be at risk for health problems. The first step you should take is determining what is the standard healthy body weight for your dog’s breed. It’s natural for some breeds to have a little extra fat, but the norm is different for more lean breeds. The best way you can help your dog live a long and happy life is yes, you guessed it, a proper diet. If your dog is used to processed kibble, excessive treats or even table scraps, your dog is prone to gaining weight quickly. We suggest consulting with a veterinarian first before starting any new diets

Dogs gain weight the same way that humans do. No exercise and too much junk food will wreak havoc on your dog’s weight. BJ’s recommends a 40% decrease in ounces of raw food if your adult dog needs to lose some extra pounds. You can also cut back on calories by reducing the amount of treats your dog receives. 

Another way you can help your dog lose weight is with additional exercise. Most dog breeds love to be active whether that’s a walk, a hike, a run, or even a swim. Get your dog outside and enjoy outdoor activities with them. Most dogs only need 30 minutes to an hour of exercise every day. Committing that much time to them every day will help you keep your dog in your life longer and it won’t be bad for you either. 

Products for Every Stage of Life

Premium Mix

A perfect option to start feeding raw for adult and senior dogs of all breeds is our premium mix. This mix is prepared with muscle meats like whole chicken, beef, and pork. Fresh seafood like our wild caught alaskan salmon. Topped off with organ meats like spleen, liver, kidney and tripe. Whether you’re trying to get your dog to lose, maintain, or gain weight, our premium mix will help them establish good dietary habits, and keep them happy and healthy!

Mama Mix

We know how important pregnancy is and how important it is to be able to keep up with your pregnant dogs' ever changing needs. If you have a soon to be dog mama, this is the best raw food mix option for you. Start feeding raw with he Mama Mix. It's packed with a blend of chicken, beef, goat, and extra herbs. All of these ingredients combine for a great milk producing booster for a new mom! It also has extra calcium added to help lactating mothers keep up with her growing puppies.

Puppy Blend

Puppies are small, clumsy bundles of joy that we all love but how do you go about feeding raw? You might be wondering what is the best option to start your puppies off right? Our puppy blend is made with chicken, chicken bone, chicken organs, and beef. As well as organ meats like liver, tripe and kidney and goat's milk. Puppies love this mix and it makes a great starter food for when you start to wean your puppies off their mom and start feeding raw. Set your puppies up with success and start them with our raw puppy mix to build healthy dietary habits. 


Why is it important to feed the right amount of food?

Why is it important to feed your pet the right amount of food? - A healthy and balanced is important for any living and breathing thing. This will provide your pet with the right amount of nutrients and give them the energy that they need on a daily basis. Not only physically important but also mentally as the proper diet helps a dog’s brain function and activates positive brain activity. This is even more important for puppies who are in the beginning stages of life or pregnant dogs who are building new life inside them. 

How To Transition To Raw 

Making the transition to feeding raw is a big deal. There are multiple strategies different people use when switching their pet from a processed dry food diet to a healthier raw food diet. Depending on your dog’s age and gut health you may be able to make the transition quickly within a few days or it may take weeks to transition. 

There are important things you need to know to transition in these scenarios but it is possible! The good news is that you may be adding years to your pet’s life and adding happiness to their life immediately with a tasty raw diet. 

Check out our page on transitioning to raw for everything you need to know to help you start feeding raw to your furry friend today!

Why Feed Your Dog Raw?

Our pets, your dogs and cats, were actually not designed to eat unprocessed food. The dry, overcooked kibble or canned food most pet parents default to feeding their pets is not the best for them. Feeding your dog or cat raw has consistent positive outcomes: shinier coats, higher energy levels, healthier skin, smaller stools, and longer life with fewer instances of chronic disease. Your pet can live a healthier, fuller life on a raw food diet. Be the hero for your pet and switch to feeding raw.

Our raw diets consist of organ meats like liver, kidney, and hearts. Whole chicken, beef, pork, and seafood. Whole or ground bone and even dog-safe fruits and vegetables. Don’t feed your dog overly processed kibble. Feed them things that you would eat. These kinds of food have unbelievable benefits for your pets. 

How Much And How Often Should I Be Feeding Raw

Knowing how much raw dog food to feed your dog comes down to the size and stage of life. Puppies get fed less than adult dogs and large dogs get fed more than small dogs even if they’re both adults. Taking the first step and acquiring knowledge to help your dog and feed them accurately is the most important thing. For exact amounts refer to your breed’s size on this page and act accordingly. Most adult dogs will be fine with their meals split between 2-3 times a day. 

How Do I Know If I’m Feeding My Dog Enough Raw?

This question is very common and we receive it all the time. The best way you can find out if you’re feeding raw enough is by gauging their activity level, energy, and overall mood. You can also examine their appearance. First, you should establish what standard health markers are for your dog’s breed and then evaluate where your dog is compared to the standards. After doing that, you can check out their shape and appearance and see if they have extra fat to the point where you can’t see their body or see if they have ribs showing. You can adjust accordingly after getting more information about your dog!