Like their wolfy descendants, Rottweilers not only love to eat meat, but they need it as a vital part of their carnivorous diets.
Most of the time, though, we believe that it should be cooked first. But is that always the case?
Rottweilers do very well on a raw meat diet. It’s good for their coats, their teeth, and for weight control. In the wild, a raw diet made primarily of meat and bones is the only thing a dog would consume throughout its life.
However, domesticated dogs like Rottweilers should be fed a combination diet, featuring both raw and other foods, in order to get all the nutrients that they need.
“Wild Dogs Don’t Eat Kibble”
There are some dog owners who will only ever feed their dog’s raw meat and nothing else. Whenever they’re questioned, their answer is often “wild dogs don’t eat kibble. They only eat meat and bones, so why should I feed my dog anything else?”
It’s a true statement, but not one that completely applies. After all, Rottweilers may be directly descended from wolves, but they’ve been domesticated for thousands of years, and their diets have drastically changed since their lupine days.
In addition, dogs in the wild are forced to scavenge for their food, and yet we don’t force our own dogs to do the same.
In addition, wild dogs and wolves also do eat some fruit and vegetables, as well as the stomach contents of their herbivore prey in order to get all available nutrients.
Raw meat should absolutely form a regular part of a Rottweiler’s diet, but so should vegetables, fruit, and at times, high-quality dried food.
Why Raw Meat is Good for Rottweilers
A Rottweiler’s diet is an important thing to consider if you’re thinking of taking on one of these beautiful dogs. After all, it’s recommended that Rottweilers eat up to two percent of their body meat in raw meat a day.
Raw meat is packed full of everything a Rottweiler needs. It’s super-high in protein and gives your Rottweiler the energy it needs to work and play hard. Raw meat is full of natural oils that keep your pet’s teeth and coat in great condition.
Furthermore, raw meat is fresh and clean (providing you’re feeding your Rottie the good-quality stuff) and this contributes to healthy gut bacteria.
Feeding a dog low quality, processed food diet will lead to an unhealthy gut and you’ll pay the price in the noxious gas your dog creates.
What About Cooked Meat Instead?
For those of us who aren’t sure whether feeding raw food is a good idea or those of us who simply can’t bear the idea of handling raw meat in such high quantities, it raises the question of raw versus cooked meat.
Cooked meat is certainly better than no meat at all, but there are still too many nutritional benefits to be had from the raw version to remove it from the dog’s diet.
Cooking meat is thought to kill off good bacteria, vitamins, and other nutrients that would otherwise benefit your dog if you were to serve the food raw.
The preparation of cooking meat could also involve using oils or seasoning and this adds to the calorific value of the meal as well as upsetting the dog’s stomach, so cooking meat is often a counter-productive endeavor.
How Much Raw Meat Should a Rottweiler Eat?
As we mentioned earlier, a Rottweiler should be eating around two percent of its body weight per day.
Ideally, this should be made up of raw meat and perhaps a couple of vegetables for extra nutrition, but we appreciate that it’s not always ideal.
The reason most people move away from giving their dogs a raw meat diet is simply due to cost. Two pounds of raw meat per day in the case of a 100-pound Rottweiler, for example, can work out a very costly endeavor.
Some good advice is to buy your meat in bulk and put it in the freezer, taking out the amount you need for a few days and defrosting it in good time. Buying in bulk greatly reduces cost.
However, if all this raw meat is still stretching your budget, then you can compromise by feeding raw meat and kibble on alternate days.
The most important thing to remember is that the kibble you feed your Rottweiler should still be of high quality and be high in protein.
Avoid dry dog food that contains high levels of grains, as these are used as cheap fillers and greatly reduce the nutritional value of the food. Buy dry dog food that contains “meat meal” as meal products are lower in water content and higher in protein.
When Raw Meat is Risky
Dogs aren’t fussy creatures, for the most part, and we all know how much a Rottweiler loves their food. That’s why it’s important for owners to be selective about the raw meat they feed their Rotties before the dogs gobble it down.
Raw meat contains bacteria and so humans should always eat their meat cooked, so as to kill off any harmful microbes that grow on the mean, including salmonella, E. coli, and listeria.
A dog’s stomach is much more equipped to handle bacteria and they have a better tolerance to raw meat. Their saliva is also very good at killing off any bacteria that may cause illness.
That being said, you should still never feed any raw meat to a dog when it’s in a condition that you wouldn’t eat yourself. If the chicken smells off, that doesn’t mean a dog should eat it.
All raw meat should still be fresh, and from a reputable source, preferably a butcher who can vouch for its origin.
Always serve your Rottweiler their raw meat in stainless steel bowls and wash them thoroughly after use.
Separate the utensils for preparing raw dog meat with those used for the family’s food, and always wash your hands thoroughly with soap after preparing your dog’s raw meat.
The Best Raw Meat for Rottweilers
Rottweilers are able to eat all kinds of raw meat, including:
- Offal (heart, kidneys, liver)
Chicken is the best raw meat in that it’s high in protein and very lean, so low in fats. Rottweilers are prone to putting on weight so the chicken is a great meat, as well as being less expensive.
Never feed your Rottweiler-cooked meat bones. They are very sharp and brittle and can puncture their stomachs. Raw bones are fine as they’re soft enough to digest.
Never feed a dog raw pork. You’ll notice that no reputable dog food company uses pork meat in their foods. Raw pork often contains a parasite called trichinella spiralis larvae which can infect a dog with trichinosis.
You can feed cooked ham and bacon to a Rottweiler as it’s also safe for humans to eat pork once cooked, but always feed pork-based products to a Rottweiler as a rare treat because they’re very high in fat and salt thanks to the curing process.
Raw Meat Plus Extras
So, a raw meat diet is not just OK, it’s the best diet for a Rottweiler! It’s important to always top up this diet with vegetables and fruits, too, in order for them to get all the vitamins and nutrients that they need.