For those of you who read my previous blog post on tackling my foster dog Pablo’s skin allergies – yes, I’m officially a foster failure since I ended up adopting Pablo myself and renamed him Wally West. Wally’s a 1.5 year old, neutered, red 38 lb Feist mix with a cute white tail tip.
His Main Breed: The Feist
I had never heard of this breed before, so I had to do a little reading on it myself! Feist dogs are American hunting dogs who descended from Terriers brought over by European immigrants.
They’re easy to train, eager to please, and naturals at hunting squirrels, vermin, small game, and birds, meaning they’re highly active dogs who need a lot of physical and mental stimulation to thrive! Wally DEFINITELY loves chasing squirrels in my yard and also wanted to chase seagulls on our most recent little trip to the NC coast.
Feists love the outdoors in general, which I have absolutely noticed in Wally!! He can’t get enough of being outside, so one of my first purchases for him was a doggie backpack from one of my favorite outdoors gear brands for dogs, Ruffwear. Wally is now proudly sporting a purple/red Commuter Pack.
I just didn’t see a Pablo in him and needed a cuter name that matched his curious and outgoing, bouncy little self. Unfortunately, I can’t take credit for his new name Wally West, but I loved the suggestion! His new dog tag has been ordered and will be delivered within the next few days. It reads:
I’m currently working on getting him used to his new name. The rescue lady I’ve been in touch with shared an easy to implement name changing tip with me – simply call him by his old name followed by his new name, so in my case I’m calling him Pablo Wally for now.
Fun Things We’ve Experienced Together So Far
Wally & I went on a day trip to the NC coast which is just a hop, skip, and a jump away from our place here in Central NC. We went to Wrightsville beach where we met up with my BFF Laura and her Golden pup Lucy, walked the Wilmington boardwalk, and then warmed up at a dog-friendly coffee shop a few blocks away from the boardwalk – Java Dog Coffee House (found it on BringFido).
We’ve gone on a number of car rides and socialized with doggie friends Lila & Rocky. Safety for dogs in the car is important to me, so Wally & Lila are pictured wearing their respective harnesses that are hooked up to the seatbelt (Lila) and the backseat’s latch bar (Wally).
We checked out Phydeaux in Cary, NC, one of my favorite independently owned pet retail stores here in the Central NC area. It’s where Wally got his very own doggie backpack to help burn his energy. I decided on Ruffwear’s Commuter Pack and have to say that he looks suuuuper cute with it strapped on!
We’ve gone on countless walks and hikes in our neighborhood, at local parks, and urban areas!!!
I got a pretty good deal with the little guy given his shelter dog background, but I’ve noticed that he likes to counter surf in the kitchen and that he’s a bit possessive about stuffed toys around other dogs.
That’s why I started keeping him on a leash when I’m busy in the kitchen that I’m attaching to my fridge. It allows me to immediately correct any counter surfing attempts with a firm “no”.
The way I’m dealing with his toy possessiveness around other dogs for the moment is to simply not leave any toys out when other dogs are visiting. I’ll have to teach him that sharing is cool in the long run. We’ll probably enroll in a basic obedience class and see what type of suggestions the trainer has for his sharing issues.
Switching Him From Dehydrated Dog Food To A Raw Dog Diet
Remember I referred to Wally as bouncy in the Renaming him section? The boy truly CAN bounce like Tigger from Winnie The Pooh. He shows it off beautifully in the video below when he got his very first raw meaty bone, a chicken neck:
So yes, I will be feeding him raw dog food that includes raw meaty bones, as well as organs and muscle meat.
The formula I follow is known as the 80/10/10 formula:
- 80% muscle meat
- 10% secreting organs (5% liver, 5% other secreting organs like kidney, spleen, reproductive organs, brains)
- 10% raw meaty bones
If you’re still new to raw feeding and/or want to learn more about the individual cuts of meat it consists of, check out my 3 blog posts about the respective meat categories:
Dogs fed a raw diet need to eat 2-3% of their ideal target body weight in raw meat per day. Wally’s more on the active side, so I did my calculations with 2.5% of his ideal body weight (his current 38 lbs). Should I notice that it’s not enough food for him, I’ll up it to 3%.
The 2.5% translate into just shy of 1 lb of food per day, or 8 oz per meal since he eats breakfast and dinner. Of that 1 lb (8oz per meal), 12 oz (6oz per meal) are muscle meat, 2 oz (1 oz per meal) are organs and 2 oz (1 oz per meal) are raw meaty bones.
Now here’s how I’m going about the switch:
I first transitioned him from kibble to a grain-free dehydrated dog food from The Honest Kitchen. I made that transition over the course of 7 days to give his digestive system time to adjust to the new food. I chose that particular brand of food so that his new adopter would be able to continue to feed him a healthier, affordable diet.
Little did I know that his new adopter would be me 🙂 Once I adopted him, I bought a box of The Honest Kitchen’s dehydrated grain-free veggie, nut, and seed base mix that’s fed with the raw or cooked protein of your choice.
I obviously added raw meat and decided to start with chicken breast. I fed that for 2 days, then gave him his first raw meaty bone (chicken neck), which he went bonkers for!
My next step was to place an order of different cuts of raw meat from Raw Feeding Miami since it’s a lot less expensive putting my own dog meals together as opposed to buying them pre-made.
While I’m waiting for that order to arrive, I am, however, feeding him pre-made raw beef patties from Nature’s Variety, which we bought at a local Petco store – Wally came along on that little trip, which made for a great mentally stimulating experience.
Wally is an intelligent working dog who needs a lot of physical and mental stimulation, so there’s a lot of backpack walks and hikes in our future!
I can’t wait to feel his soft, soft coat after about a month on the raw dog food diet. For now it’s rewarding to see him enjoy it! I’ll be sharing pictures of our raw meals on Instagram.
You’re welcome to say hi to Wally! As always, we’d love to hear from you in our comment section!