It is always a usual debate where pet owners on the street, in online forums and so on, often debate on whether it is right to feed their Bichon Frise dog with raw meat or not. And while the answer has since been objective, it all boils down to some factors which we will be looking at today. So, if you’ve always been confused on whether or not to feed your Bichon Frise with raw meat, then this article is certainly for you.
Raw Meat Only?
Yes, Bichon Frise dogs can eat raw meat. But should a Bichon Frise dog eat raw meat, though? Dr. RuthAnn Lobos, a Purina veterinarian, says feeding a food diet consisting mainly of raw meat, may not provide the complete and balanced nutrition your Bichon Frise dog needs
Raw Food diets (RFDs) have in recent years grown in high popularity. And as you’d expect, the popularity may stem from pet owners hoping to feed their Bichon Frise dogs foods that more closely resemble how they would have eaten in the wild.
Commercial Prepared Food
Domestic or commercially prepared RFDs are based on raw meat and bones. In particular, these food diets cover uncooked muscle meat, organs, and bones from various mammals, fish, and poultry.
Also, raw food diets may also consist of unpasteurized milk, uncooked eggs and raw fruits and vegetables. Even though it’s a raw, meat-based diet, it may also has cooked grains.
Wild Bichons – Shorter Lifespan on Raw Meat Diets
A diet consisting of raw meat, fruits and vegetables may seem to resemble the diet of wild Bichon Frise dogs, but it’s important to note that they have a much shorter life expectancy than domesticated Bichon Frise dogs. So, can Bichon Frise dogs eat raw meat? Let’s find that out.
CAN BICHON FRISE DOGS EAT RAW MEAT? AND IF SO, IS IT HEALTHY?
Yes, Bichon Frise dogs can eat raw meat. But should a Bichon Frise dog eat raw meat, though? Dr. RuthAnn Lobos, a Purina veterinarian, says feeding a food diet consisting mainly of raw meat, may not provide the complete and balanced nutrition your Bichon Frise dog needs.
Bichon Puppies / Senior Dogs
“This is especially true in rapidly growing and developing puppies,” she says. “Their dietary needs are quite complex. The same is true for senior Bichon Frise dogs who may have a weaker immune system and more sensitive digestive systems.”
Properly cooking meat and carbohydrates (like we do with our Bichon Frise dog foods) can make the food more digestible. When foods are easily digested, “Bichon Frise dogs can use more of the nutrients, more effectively for producing energy, building muscles and supporting their immune systems,” Dr. Lobos adds.
A raw food diet can increase your Bichon Frise dog’s risk of nutritional deficiencies and illnesses. They need complete and balanced nutrition to help them live long and healthy lives. If you do choose a commercially prepared raw food diet, experts recommend ensuring that it is made by a vet nutritionist. Plus, it is also recommended to choose a food that has undergone feeding trials and meets WSAVA (World Small Animal Veterinary Association) guidelines, to see to it that your Bichon Frise dog receives all the important nutrients he needs.
ARE THERE RISKS TO GIVING BICHON FRISE DOGS RAW MEAT?
In addition to the risk of nutritional deficiencies, raw meat does pose other health risks both for you the pet owner and your Bichon Frise dog. For one, AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association), America’s FDA (Food & Drug Administration) (FDA), and CDC (Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, have all aired their opinions on the dangers of feeding raw meat to dogs, most especially the susceptible ones like Bichon Frise. According to an FDA study, not only does it pose a risk to your Bichon Frise dog, but it also poses a threat to you and your family at large. This is because, raw meat often contains harmful bacteria like Listeria, Salmonella, E. coli and so on, which can cause serious illnesses to your Bichon Frise dog’s health, and that of you and your kids.
On the other hand, cooking meat to a safe temperature kills off those harmful bacteria in the meat, and thus makes it safe to feed them to your Bichon Dogs. By feeding uncooked meat, there’s a higher risk your Bichon Frise dog will develop a foodborne disease or any other type of bacterial infection that often comes as a result of consuming bacteria-infected foods.
Plus, as stated earlier, there’s an increased risk you or a member of your family will come in contact with the bacteria, and thus develop a foodborne disease too. From handling the raw meat to allowing your Bichon Frise dog to lick your face, cleaning up his poop or even touching any contaminated surfaces, will increase the risk of infection. If you do choose to feed your Bichon Frise dog a raw food diet, it is recommended that you refer to the safety guidelines published by either FDA, CDC or AVMA. By so doing, it will help in reducing the risks of feeding your Bichon Frise dog with contaminated foods and also prevent foodborne diseases.
Plus, it’s worth noting that many therapy dog associations, such as Pet Partners, prohibit Bichon Frise dogs on raw food diets, from being part of their program. This is because the raw food poses too much risk for the people they are trained to be of assistance to.
IS RAW FOOD GOOD FOR BICHON FRISE DOGS?
In my own opinion, at least if you’ve been following everything that has been said here, then you’d agree with me that feeding your Bichon Frise dog, with raw meat isn’t such a good idea. From the risk, it poses to the dog’s health, down to how it affects the owner, raw meat is really not an ideal choice to be used in feeding Bichon Frise dogs. Nevertheless, if that’s what you can afford, or perhaps you don’t always have the time or resources to steam the meats, then it is advisable to meet your vet nutritionist so that they could direct you on what steps you can use in reducing the chances of an infection from each raw meat you feed to your Bichon Frise dogs. Or even better, they could suggest other options to you, which can be used in place of raw meats. Overall, the choice is all yours!