You may have gathered from previous blog posts on our website, that we value healthy living. Besides caring for our own health, we also provide our dog with a healthy diet.

When Mojo was a puppy, we used to buy balanced and premade raw food for her. Over time however, we noticed that her body did not react well to it. Feeding premade raw food often resulted in poor stools.

The premade raw food that we can buy in the Netherlands has a different balance than the food we currently feed. As we studied dog nutrition more carefully a few months after bringing Mojo into our lives, we became aware that this percentage is way too high.

 

 

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This left us with just one option. We started preparing our own raw dog food. We have been doing this for almost two years with amazing results! Although it does take some time and practice, it is often much more affordable to do so.

Are you interested in finding out more about the prey model raw diet that we choose to feed Mojo? You can read the outlines here.

If you don’t feel confident that you can provide your dog with balanced homemade meals just yet, leave a comment below to ask any questions you may have. Feel free to reach out on our contact page as well!

 

Balancing over time

Our meal prep method does not provide Mojo with a fully balanced meal every single day. Rather, her diet is balanced over time. Although every meal includes a variety of ingredients, they differ in nutrients from day to day.

This is however not a problem at all. Dog food has to be balanced, but not per se on a daily basis. The dog’s body is adapted to eating irregularly. Therefore it is sufficient for dogs to balance their meals over longer periods of time.

Attention: For growing pups, this is not the case. Puppies require a diet that is balanced daily, because their bodies are still developing.

 
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Prepping for prep day

Before ordering the ingredients, it’s important to make sure you’ve got everything you need to prepare your dog’s meals. There is nothing worse than being ready to start on a task and realizing there’s one important part missing, right?!

These are the items you will need during meal prep:

  • Cleaver or other sharp knife
  • Cutting board
  • Metal or glass bowls
  • Reusable containers
  • Cleaning products
  • Optional: latex gloves, meat scissors

Aside from the reusable containers, you will most likely have all of these items in your kitchen.

During meal prep, we prefer to use a cutting board that we solely use for this occasion; but this is probably mostly due to the fact we do not eat meat ourselves, meat is meat nonetheless.

We use a sharp large knife to cut up any pieces of meat that are too big for Mojo’s meals. A cleaver works best!

Mojo’s meals are frozen in reusable plastic containers. For 500 gram meals we use 600 ml containers. The size of container you need will depend on your dog’s  daily requirements.

 

 

Meat, bone, organ

The prey model raw diet consists of meat, bone, and organ. On the morning of prep day, we thaw out the exact amount of meat, bone, and organ that we need for a specific number of days.

We prepare 35 days worth of food in one go. After that, our freezer is filled to the max. Mojo eats 500 grams a day, which equals to 35*500=17 500 grams of food in total.

By thawing out a balanced amount of ingredients, we ensure a balanced diet over the total meal prep. And you don’t even need scales on prep day if you do this!

We prefer to thaw out the ingredients on the floor of our shower cubicle. This might sound strange, but it is the easiest surface to clean!

Just make sure you don’t leave the meat unattended and to close the bathroom door if your dog has free roam of the house. We forgot to close the door of our bathroom one time and Mojo took full advantage of it…

Attention: If you own multiple dogs, thaw the exact amount you need for both dogs, and keep the ingredients for their meals separate. If you don’t separate the ingredients, you cannot ensure a balanced meal for both dogs without using scales!

 

 

Cut up whatever needs cutting

If there are any items that need cutting, it’s best to do so before they are fully thawed. Semi-frozen meat is namely much easier to cut! This is especially convenient when cutting up organ meat such as kidney, lung, and pancreas, as these are often quite tough.

 

Divide it all over the containers

When all ingredients are thawed, you can start prepping!

Place all containers on a surface that’s easy to clean. This can be your kitchen counter, your dining room table, the floor in your yard… Pick a place that works best for you!

All you have to do is fill a bowl with one of the ingredients and aim to distribute these as best as possible over all containers. You can then proceed to do the same for all other ingredients.

We usually start with all bone-in meat, and make sure each container has one larger duck wing or two smaller ones. We then divide all organ meat, adding a bit to each container. Some containers will only have one type of organ meat, whilst others might have two.

We then add one type of meat at a time, to fill up the containers. This way, her meals stay varied. Mojo might eat venison as the main protein type on one day, and rabbit the next. She still eats meat, bone, and organ daily, her diet is varied throughout the month, and it is completely balanced.

The slideshow below shows one example of a meal prep we did a few months ago. We started with bone in meat, then added all other meats, before finishing with organ meat.

  • plastic containers in pmr meal prep
    Bone-in meat: duck wings and duck necks

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Freeze and clean up!

When you’re finished prepping, and all bowls have a relatively equal amount of food, it’s time to close the lids and freeze these meals.

The final and most important thing to do is clean your working surfaces. We start by cleaning all utensils. We then clean all surfaces and mop the floors, and disinfect the bathroom!

We end with a shower because let’s be honest, after carrying meat around for an hour we don’t feel squeaky clean!

 

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This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Your meals look so amazing, maybe one day we can create something similar! X

    1. Thank you! You definitely will! I’d recommend checking out Naturaw. They have all ingredients you could ever need to create your own meals, but they also do balanced premade raw!

  2. Hi, I’ve been trying to figure out what meats I need to buy for my dog. One thing that concerns me is bones. I’ve heard you shouldn’t give dogs bird bones because they can splinter and basically poke holes in their stomach or get caught on the way down. I saw that you give duck wings so I was wondering your thoughts on that.
    Also, can you suggest some good sources for the meats?

    1. Hi Carly,
      Bones in a raw meat diet (and bones in general) are always a sensitive topic. To summarize, there are two things to keep in mind.
      A heating process decreases the amount of moisture in bones. This causes them to lose their natural flexibility. Cooked bone will always break off in harder and sharper pieces that cannot be digested. Poultry bones in particular form sharp shards when broken. Cooked bones should hence never be offered – not for consumption nor recreational chewing.
      Weight bearing bones are always harder than poultry bones. Femurs from grazers for example, are hence never fed.
      Poultry bone, chicken in particular, is soft and flexible. It crumbles when crushed by a dog’s molars and is hence the first type of meat/bone to be added to a dog starting out on a raw diet.
      We try to stick to wings, necks, backs, and tails. Occasionally (depending on the dog) we offer a very large beef knuckle bone. An item that can’t fit in between the dog’s jaws and on which they can nibble and scrape their molars.
      We see that you are located in Canada (or rather assume, based on your email address). You can try checking out Big Country Raw and Tail Blazers!
      If you want to see the differences between raw and cooked bone, we made a video that you can watch here: https://youtu.be/Ilgx4e_zJhQ

  3. Hi !
    Thanks for the useful help on raw feeding 🙂
    However, I have two concerns to share : is it really safe to thaw and then freeze again raw meat, since it is highly advised not to do this in case of human consumption ?
    Also, do you remember where you found your plastic containers ? It seems I can’t find some which are large enough and not overpriced.

    1. Hi Rose!
      Most welcome 🙂
      Yes. As far as we are aware, in case of human consumption, refreezing is advised against due to the change in color in case of oxidization. The meat can turn brown when it’s exposed to oxigen (quite literally, it will rust). That’s not harmful though, and actually doesn’t change the taste at all. People just assume it does due to a change in color. It’s important not to leave the meat at room temperature for too long, though!
      I got the containers from a dollar store. They were 69 cents for two and they are amazing. Should be able to find some in a similar store or on Amazon perhaps 🙂

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