If you’ve heard about raw duck frames for dogs but aren’t quite sure if they’re right for your pup, keep reading!
The first time I personally came across raw duck frames was back in 2016.
That’s when I started learning how to make my own homemade raw dog food for my two Boxer mixes.
Ever since, this particular cut of meat has been a regular in my DIY raw meals.
So in this blog post, I’ll share what I’ve learned about duck frames over the years, including:
- What is a raw duck frame anyway?
- Its bone to meat ratio
- Nutrients in raw duck (frames)
- Where to buy raw duck frames
- Different ways of feeding them
Bonus: A peak into a few of my raw dog food bowls that feature duck frames.
All About Raw Duck Frames For Dogs
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What Is A Raw Duck Frame?
Duck frames are the carcass of a duck.
That includes bones, cartilage, and connective tissue. They also have some meat and fat attached to them.
That’s why in raw feeding, duck frames are classified as raw meaty bones. They make up about 10% of raw dog food for adult dogs.
The rest consists of muscle meat, (secreting) organs and optional plant matter.
Duck in general is also considered a cooling protein source and works great for most dogs who battle inflammation issues.
Bone to Meat Ratio in Raw Duck Frames
Now, the bone to meat ratio on a raw duck frame is roughly 75% bone and 25% meat.
As far as how much they weigh, duck frames can vary significantly in weight depending on the size of the duck.
I’ve seen a weight range between about 13 oz-1.5 lbs.
That means you’ll find about 9.75-16.5 oz of bone and 3.25-5.5 oz of meat on a duck frame.
This ratio is important to understand when you’re creating your own raw dog food recipes alongside duck frames.
To figure out how much of a duck frame your dog needs on a daily/weekly basis, do the following math:
Divide your dog’s daily bone allowance by the bone percentage of the duck frame, then multiply with 100.
For example, my 38 lb dog Wally needs about 1.5 oz of bone per day.
Divided by the 75% of bone in a duck frame, that’s 0.02. Multiplied by 100, that’s 2 oz.
So he can have 2 oz worth of a duck frame per day.
To figure out how much of a duck frame he can have per week, I just multiply the 2 oz by 7.
That’s 14 oz worth of duck frame.
Nutrients in Raw Duck (Frames)
As all raw meaty bones, duck frames are naturally rich in calcium and phosphorus, which is important for healthy muscles and bones.
Unfortunately, I have yet to find a resource that lists out duck frame nutrients comprehensively.
Both only list nutrient information for whole ducks.
But that’s still good enough, and here’s what I found when I compared a whole duck to a whole chicken and a whole turkey:
- Whole duck has double the amount of iron and Vitamin E than whole chicken and whole turkey
- Duck is in between chicken (lowest) and turkey (highest) as far as the amount of Vitamin D goes
- (Fattier) duck also has about 1/3 more in Vitamin A than the other birds
Note: The exact nutrient levels depend on how lean or fatty the respective bird is.
That’s particularly true for the Vitamin A, D & E levels.
That said, the fattier the bird, the higher the levels of Vitamin A, D & E because all 3 are fat soluble vitamins.
Generally speaking, farmed ducks (25% fat) are always going to be fattier than wild ducks (15% fat).
Where To Buy Raw Duck Frames
You can get your hands on raw duck frames a few different ways.
Your Local Grocery Store or Farmer’s Market
The most obvious option is to buy a whole duck at your local grocery store if they carry them.
You may also be able to buy them from a farmer at your local Farmer’s Market.
You’ll have to cut off the wings, thighs, fat, and most of the meat to be left with just the meaty carcass.
But that’s not a bad thing at all because you’ll obviously be able to use everything else (but the majority of the fat) in your raw dog food as well.
Plus, most birds come with their neck and organs included on the inside.
Similar to turkeys and chickens.
Note: If your dog is at their target body weight, overweight or battling pancreatitis issues, I recommend you remove most of the fatty skin.
You can leave it on if you need to add some weight to an emaciated dog or if you have a working dog who will benefit from the extra energy it supplies.
Raw Paws Pet Food
Another option is to buy raw duck frames at a raw pet food retailer like Raw Paws.
They’re located in Indiana and ship nationwide within the US. Free shipping starts at orders $199 + for frozen items.
They carry whole duck frames that don’t require cutting off anything.
To save 15% on any of your orders with them, use my affiliate discount code K9Savings at checkout.
Duck Frames for Dogs, 15 lbs
from: Raw Paws Pet Food
Raw Feeding Miami
You can also find raw duck frames at Raw Feeding Miami.
This retailer is located in Florida and also ships nationwide within the US. They offer free shipping for orders $150 + with code SHIP150.
How To Feed Raw Duck Frames
Now, there’s a few different ways you can feed your dog duck frames.
For large and extra large dogs, you can feed them whole.
I’d say any dog that weighs upwards of 50 lbs is OK with a whole duck frame.
So your Boxers, Labs, Goldens, Weimaraners, GSPs, Shepherds, Mastiffs, Great Danes, etc.
My pup Missy weighed 55 lbs and her brother Buzz 75 lbs.
Both got to eat their raw duck frames whole.
When I fed them this way, I applied the concept of achieving nutrient balance over the course of one week.
That’s a heck of a lot more convenient than feeding a certain amount of bone per day.
Plus, it provides much more of a satisfying jaw and body workout.
Tip: I would either feed them on a towel, inside their crate or outside in the yard if the weather was nice.
For medium size dogs who let you take the raw duck frame away, you can also offer them whole.
Then once they’ve chewed on it some, take it away and store it in the fridge until the next day. Ideally in a ziplock bag or a food storage container.
Then offer it for another chewing session.
You can repeat this for 4 days, then you’ll have to freeze the remaining duck frame to make sure it doesn’t spoil.
For medium size dogs who don’t let you take the raw duck frame away, offer it chunked or ground.
This is the way to go if you want to include a little bit of raw duck frame in your pup’s meals on a daily basis.
So come raw dog food meal prep time, you can add the right amount of bone that your dog needs into each container.
Tip: Sharp serrated bread knives work best to cut duck carcasses into smaller chunks.
If you want to grind the duck frame, you’ll obviously have to use a specific tool; for example, the Weston Pro series meat grinder (-> Cyber Monday deal!).
For small dogs, I would follow the same approach or feed different raw meaty bones altogether.
For example, duck wings or feet, or whole quails.
Cook it whole for duck bone broth
Raw duck frames are also great bones to make homemade bone broth with.
Bonus: Raw Dog Food Bowls With Duck Frames
Now as promised, here’s a peek into a few of my dogs’ bowls that feature duck frames one way or another.
1st Bowl Ingredients:
- Chia seeds
- Beef hearts
- Coconut oil
- Kelp powder
- Whole duck frame
- Green Lipped Mussel powder
- Beef secreting organ mix (liver, kidney, spleen)
2nd Bowl Ingredients:
- Whole duck frame
- Broccoli & kelp purée
- Ground pork (under the frame)
- Four Leaf Rover Guts & Glory
- Organic chicken egg with shell
Note: This particular recipe is featured in my ebook 20 raw dog food recipes.
3rd Bowl Ingredients:
- Duck liver
- Duck meat
- Duck heart
- Duck gizzards
- Spinach purée
- Beef green tripe
- Chunked duck frame
- Beef kidney & spleen mix
This bowl features the Mighty Paw slow feed dog bowl insert. I use it almost daily for my pup Wally to help slow down his eating.
All About Raw Duck Frames For Dogs: Bottom Line
Duck frames aka duck carcasses are large raw meaty bones with a bone to meat ratio of 75% bone:25% meat.
They’re great to feed whole to large and extra large dogs because they provide a wonderful jaw and whole body workout.
Smaller dogs can enjoy that same workout over the course of multiple chewing sessions as long as they let you take the bone away.
If they don’t, you can offer them smaller chunks of the duck frame, or grind it altogether.
The Weston Pro Series is a powerful meat grinder if you’re considering going that route.
You can also use duck frames to make nutritious bone broth.
Unless you can find whole ducks at your local grocery store or Farmer’s Market, you can get your hands on raw duck frames from Raw Paws Pet Food and Raw Feeding Miami, at least in the States.
If you’re aware of other stateside retailers who carry duck frames, it would be much appreciated if you could share them in the comment section below this blog post!
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