Raw, combination or no change?

Following on from SteffiS's thread concerning anal glands, I'm wondering about changing Molly's diet. Having read the info. in the links some of you helpfully posted, I'm wondering if a switch to raw would help.

Molly has had seasonal allergies since she arrived with us at 11 weeks old. We thought we had it fairly well controlled with the odd use of steroids, antihistamines and oils. However, this summer she doesn't seem to be less itchy, we are now just in October, and it's still affecting her. So, I'm now wondering if a diet change may help, not only the itchiness but the anal gland problem as well.
Again, having read the links, I'm no longer happy for her to be 'squeezed' at the vets every few weeks, particularly as they seem to have difficulties doing it.

My question is, what and how much raw to offer and can a combination of raw and kibble be any good? Any comments or advice would be appreciated.


I feed a combo of raw and good quality kibble, with breakfast (the main meal) being raw, and the smaller, evening meal kibble. As regards amounts, I go by looking at the dogs and adjusting accordingly. So this morning, Merlin (35 kg) had two duck necks, a couple of tablespoons of beef and pork mince, two-thirds of a potato and some veggies left over from our dinner last night. Poppy (25 kg) had one duck neck, one tablespoon of mince, one-third of a potato and some veggies. They both had a squirt of salmon oil on their food. This evening, Merlin will have around one cup of kibble, Poppy half a cup, but I vary this depending on what training treats and how much exercise they have had during the day. They get other treats such as a dried pig’s ear, or a raw carrot during the day as well. Hope this is helpful!


We do something similar to @MellowYellow. I have found the raw minces with ground bone incorporated work the best. Smaller, harder poos. Casper has only had to have his glands expressed once, and Benson not at all.

Ours get a good quality kibble in the morning, Millies Wolfheart, currently salmon and veg, and have just switched to Luna & me patties. We did use Bella & Duke but didn't like the "brainwashing" on their site and facebook page. Trying to find a raw mince which excludes beef/chicken but is complete has been a bit of a challenge. I have had Casper on a two-week exclusion diet of just home (lightly steamed) turkey and a little veg. Now just adding MW salmon and veg which we know he is fine with.
Canine Nutritionists that I have the pleasure of knowing, and dog food production companies that I have spoken to all advise not to mix feeding raw with kibble as in their opinion it is difficult to ensure that you are providing the correct balance of nutrients. My dog food company admits that they know people do mix but they advise against it - either one or the other for best balance.


Manchester UK
I don’t feed raw, mainly because of the cost and the mess. But there are other ways of getting a nice firm poo. Pro-fibre worked really well with my Callum, who sometimes had anal gland problems.



advise not to mix feeding raw with kibble as in their opinion it is difficult to ensure that you are providing the correct balance of nutrients
That doesn't make sense to me. If food A (kibble) is nutritionally complete and food B (raw) is nutritionally complete, then it doesn't matter what ratio of A and B you feed, it will be nutritionally complete.
My dog food company admits that they know people do mix but they advise against it - either one or the other for best balance.
I'm with you on this @snowbunny.
This is an argument that seems to rumble on. I left a Facebook group on raw because of their attitude to anyone who fed any kibble at all. I wouldn't feel able to feed solely raw, so I prefer to feed some raw rather than none.
Right, after reading all your replies - and thanks to you all - next step is find a butcher who does his own butchering. We have 2 in our small town, neither of whom butcher on site, everything driven in from factories - SO ..
how and where do I find the food I need? I like the sound of your mince with ground bone Beanwood, but where on earth do you get that from?

I'm beginning to wonder if I may have to become a 'shooter' so will have access to fresh game birds :happyfeet:
We have a local shop that specialises in raw foods, it stocks loads of brands such as Natural Instinct and Natures Menu, they do a mince with ground bone but it's not a brand I'd heard of which was why I asked @Beanwood what she was using. I also buy meat and fish at the supermarket when it's on special offer and freeze that.


@SteffiS I have just ordered some of the complete range by Luna & Me. I am sure there are some equally good raw food providers, however, I was looking for a range which didn't contain beef. So have ordered the super blends lamb and turkey to try and I know these are protein sources Casper is OK with. :)


Bristol, UK
I feed a mix of kibble and raw which suits us and Harley. For raw she will have chicken wings / thighs / breast with some of the carcass, mince from the butcher, steak, lamb ribs, fish and I sometimes buy Natures menu raw mince which she also likes.
We struggled for ages on different kibbles as she had constant diarrhoea until we found we she was ok on, we then slowly added different raw meats which she loves.
Well, shopping early this morning, I got a couple of pig's trotters and some meaty bones (lamb) from Morrisons. The trotters seem quite big - I don't have a meat cleaver unfortunately so I don't think I'll be able to cut them up. Do you think a whole trotter would be OK?
Will probably have to invest in a chopper of some king though as I think the meaty bones are a bit big too. Oh I really hope I don't get this wrong and end up with Molly throwing it all up :facepalm:
I've also got a lamb breast that's been in the freezer for a while, which is very fatty but is that OK if I cut off as much of the fat as possible?