My boston has a lot of allergies, including most grains, salmon, lamb, and potatoes (both white and sweet). I've looked into raw feeding and it is something that I may try in the future, when we have grass laid in our yard and can feed outside. Until then, dogs get California Naturals Grain-Free, either the chicken/pea or kangaroo/lentil. I usually supplement with cheap meats, mostly to keep them from getting bored with the limited selection of kibble.
About bostons in general- they are stinky, gassy dogs! We had a lot of success in mitigating this by both eliminating grains from his diet, and also we use a digestive supplement, D-Zyme by Solid Gold. You sprinkle 1/4 tsp on their meals. It is relatively inexpensive, available on Amazon for less than $20, 1 jar lasts us well over a month. Money well spent, trust me! Also, pumpkin is a lifesaver if yours has digestive issues, either diarrhea or constipation. Plain old canned pumpkin, just be sure it is only pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling, which will have spices in it. I try to stock up during the holidays, it can be hard to find the rest of the year. Just a tablespoon or so on their food for a few meals will get their systems back on track.
Ours also has chronic dry skin, we bathe him using Earth Bath oatmeal shampoo and that helps. Coconut oil, administered either orally (mine loves coconut) or melted and rubbed into the skin as a pre-bath body mask also helps. It is also really funny to watch them try to lick the coconut oil off themselves.
They are pretty high energy dogs, so be prepared. A woman I met at the dog park likened them to "bowling balls on legs" and that is about right. Mine is obsessed with fetch, and has been known to run other dogs over to get his ball. And he is on the mellow end, based on other bostons we have met.
Overall, they are very sweet dogs, hilariously funny, and smart enough that training them isn't a nightmare. Congrats on the new dog!
Thx for the info badky22!
So, you give the digestive enzyme with food to help your pooch digest it's food better?
Pumpkin, never heard of giving it to a dog. How does it help and do you do give it all the time or just when they get some issues?
Yes, the digestive enzymes help them digest food (especially kibble) better. If you feed raw you may or may not need enzymes, it seems to depend on the dog. My other dog, a havanese, has never needed them, but all around she has fewer issues.
I'm not sure exactly what pumpkin does, but it is a cheap, reliable fix for both diarrhea and constipation. It seems to be something to do with the fiber in the pumpkin, not sure why pumpkin works but other fibrous foods don't. You'll see it referenced on almost any dog forum, and specialty pet food stores even sell canned pumpkin year round for tummy troubles, although it is more expensive than canned pumpkin at the grocery store. I only feed it when they are having problems, just a dollop mixed in with meals for a day or two. Mine love it, will even eat it straight off a spoon. If you don't make it through a full can you can always freeze the leftovers.
I second the high-energy statement! Winter here sucks because by the time I get off work, its too dark to go to the dog park, and I simply can't help him burn off enough of his energy! Not having a yard is challenging, too, but we'll be getting one soon when we move!
Also, the gassiness is totally true! My guy has figured out how to sit on the top of the couch (right behind my head). He will then fart right in my ear! He's lucky he's so cute!
Just general things that might be important:
Because BTs are brachycephalic, they can be sensitive to a lot of things (heat, cold) but most importantly, they can be sensitive to anesthesia, so make sure whatever vet you choose is aware of this and can handle it properly.
If your pup has super buggy eyes (like mine does) be careful with things like bush twigs that stick out too far, accidental thumps on the head, and even collars. Their eyes can be sensitive. I always use a harness with my guy because if they pull too hard on a collar (and have really buggy eyes) the pressure can build up in their head, possibly pushing an eyeball out of its socket.
If you still have a tv, you might not need it anymore! BT's are simply too cute and too funny!! They're sooo much more entertaining than a tv!!
Here are some pictures, if you're interested:
Raw meaty bones, eg chicken frames, necks.
chunky lamb or chicken.
Commercial pet foods, even grain free have junk in them. Plus its cooked meat, they need raw.
Some veg is OK, but dogs can't digest the cellulose in raw veg, so cooked, or finely ground up. Ours only get leftovers from us occasionally.
Liver is also good. The main part of their diet needs to be raw meaty bones though.
Def all bones need to be raw, otherwise they can splinter, and cause you problems.
Even my chihuahua will chow down on a chicken carcass.
My butcher ground up lambs fry and chicken the other day, so they have this sometimes but its mainly for our cats.
Plus I got ground up chicken and chicken carcass for them too.
Raw feeder here, too! Have been for years and am currently feeding about 200 pounds worth of dog and cat. Meat, bones, organs, and trace veggies if there are any left over that are going bad. My older dogs get supplemented for specific problems (arthritis, etc). We also minimally vaccinate...
yeah vaccines and chemical flea treatments are also adding to unhealthy pets.
If you get them vaccinated as puppies its really not necessary to vaccinate them every year, they last many more years. You can get your vet to check their titre levels to show you this too.
Plus healthy animals generally don't get attacked by fleas. I have not used any chemicals on my pets in 4 years and they have never had a flea.
Thx for sharing the pics! How cute!