A Novice’s Guide to Raw Feeding for Dogs, Chapter 1

This blog post was originally published on Keep the Tail Wagging.

Earlier this year I decided that this would be the year I published a paperback book.  This has been a dream for a long time, but I gave every excuse in the book not to get it done and the last week of March, I started writing.

Today, five months later, I am a published author and my book, A Novice’s Guide to Raw Feeding, is being shipped to dog parents around the country!

A Novice's Guide to Raw Feeding for Dogs
Now available on Amazon.

This is the first chapter of my book.

An Introduction to Raw Feeding

My name is Kimberly, I have four dogs, and I’m a raw feeder.

In 2013, I worked with Darwin’s Pet to transition my dogs to a raw food diet.  I was nervous about the cost and I didn’t understand anything about dog nutrition.  I knew that my dog, Rodrigo, was suffering from a myriad of health issues because of dry dog food and I prayed that raw dog food was the answer.

Today, more than four years later, Rodrigo is a healthy 7-year-old dog.  We were joking recently about waltzing Rodrigo down to the vet clinic where his first vet predicted that our dog would live a short life due to his health issues.  It would be worth the trip if we could change the vet’s mind about raw feeding.  He’d probably have us arrested for trespassing.

Rebooting Raw Feeding from A to Z

This year, I hosted my first workshops teaching others how to make dog food.  I wasn’t able to lease a kitchen space, so I cooked dog food and thawed raw dog food to bring to the workshops, along with supplements, treats, and copies of my Quick Start Guide to Raw Feeding.

I had a blast talking to people, answering questions, and sharing our story.  The workshop was the boost I needed to begin writing the updated version of my book Raw Feeding from A to Z.

I wrote and published my first A to Z series in April 2014 on my blog, Keep the Tail Wagging®.  In this book, A Novice’s Guide to Raw Feeding, you will find a guide to transitioning to raw feeding, information about raw feeding using the alphabet as a guide, and raw dog food recipes that work for my dogs.  

Three years ago, I thought raw feeding was too expensive; today, I buy 99% of my supplies through a local raw food co-op, which cut my monthly budget by more than 50%.  Three years ago, I thought raw feeding was too complicated; today, I find raw feeding easier than feeding kibble.  I wrote this book to make raw feeding easier for other dog owners.  Enjoy.

Why I Feed My Dogs Raw Dog Food

When I switched to raw, it was to give Rodrigo relief from environmental allergies, food allergies, ear infections, chronic diarrhea, skin rashes, itchy paws, and joint pain.  Today, I understand that we feed raw because it’s species appropriate.  A diet filled with highly processed foods were the cause of my dog’s health issues.

The first two weeks of feeding raw we saw a huge improvement to Rodrigo’s health, and he and my other dogs only ate raw in the morning; we fed them kibble in the evening during a transition period of three months.  The addition of fresh foods to a diet of processed foods made a significant difference.

Note:  We did not mix raw and kibble together; this would have been too much for Rodrigo’s gut as the two diets battled it out (they have different pH levels).  I later learned that transitioning our dogs over three months wasn’t necessary.  It was recommended because of my concern over the cost of premade raw, which can be overwhelming when raising multiple dogs.

Why I Write About Raw Feeding

The reason I write about raw feeding is to let others know the importance of adding fresh food to our dogs’ diet.  I want others to see the amazing transformations like what I witnessed with Rodrigo.

When I became a raw feeder and started researching dog nutrition, I found it complicated, contradictory, and overwhelming.  One person told me that yogurt was great for dogs; another person told me yogurt is bad for dogs.  Some raw feeding groups are welcoming of all models of raw feeding, while others ban the mention of vegetables.

I write about raw feeding because the raw feeding community is all that many pet lovers have and I feel that it’s my responsibility to share my experiences, paying forward the time others have taken to share their experience and knowledge with me.

CLICK HERE to order A Novice’s Guide to Raw Feeding for Dogs.

5 Comments Add yours

  1. linda coe says:

    Kimberly, I was really excited to hear you have a book out; congratulations!!! I am not an Amazon shopper however I did find a copy on ebay; are you the one selling it there or do you suppose it is a resale (it says it is new) I want to make sure I purchase a copy where you will get your share of the profits for all your hard work.


    1. KimberlyGauthier says:

      Thank you for asking. The eBay copy isn’t mine; it’s a resale.


      1. KimberlyGauthier says:

        PS – the person has to buy it from Amazon to sell it to you unless they’re pirating a digital copy. But for that price, I’m guessing that it’s the paper back version.


  2. Ashley Kohn says:

    Hello, My dog is allergic to literally every protein out there, with the exception of Lamb. I would like to go raw, however I am worried that your book wouldn’t have enough recipes to feed my pet. Before I buy your book, could you explain about pets with severe allergies to food and how you go about transitioning them into a raw diet and reintroduce them to new proteins?


    1. KimberlyGauthier says:

      Hi Ashley – I have a dog with an intolerance to many proteins, however, he could eat those same proteins (save a few) when fed a raw food diet. For your dog, the best recommendation I can make is to feed your dog raw food by Answers Pet Food. It’s fermented and many dogs that have protein allergies/intolerance do great on their food. I also suggest adding their raw goats milk and kefir to your dog’s diet. This is a natural source of probiotics and also helps to heal the gut, which, in turn, strengthens the immune system.

      My book isn’t a recipe book; it’s a book about raw feeding with a few recipes at the end to give people who want to do DIY raw an idea of what to feed their dog. The majority of the book explains why I feed raw, my experience as a raw feeder, and it breaks down the different aspects of raw feeding (models, supplements, etc.). So it’s still of value, but I wanted to let you know that it’s not a recipe book if that is what you’re looking for.


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