SPREADSHEET

I’m fond of reminding people that raw feeding isn’t the proverbial “rocket science”, but you do, of course, have to acknowledge a few basics. Good tools help make any job more accurate, efficient, and just plain more enjoyable.

This spreadsheet was designed by a few very dedicated raw feeders who were interested in comparing raw feeding in practice to facts and figures only available to those feeding commercially prepared foods. Whether you’re new to the diet and looking for guidelines, a seasoned raw feeder wanting to check your meal plan, or just looking out of sheer curiosity, it’s a valuable resource. It has been available online since 2008, but in 2014 it became necessary to find it a new home. Pack Lunch was only too happy to give it one.

Please note that the spreadsheet is protected under applicable copyright laws, and for personal use ONLY. Sharing, is, of course, encouraged, but please direct others to this page for access to the file. Selling or making the spreadsheet available for purchase or profit is explicitly forbidden. For more information or permissions to distribute the file please contact Pack Lunch via the comment section or email. Your cooperation is appreciated.

Using the spreadsheet is easy. Just plug your dog’s weight into the field at the top of the page, and watch the rest populate with interesting and helpful info. Please do remember that the info is a guideline only. It is a compilation and extrapolation of established and reliable, but third-party information. Every dog is an individual. This spreadsheet has been designed for adult dogs only, not cats, puppies, or animals with needs beyond the scope of the spreadsheet.

UPDATE July 2015:
I recently got a message from a long-time user of the spreadsheet inquiring about the source of information and figures regarding nutrient requirements. The answer is that they are based on the updated version of the report, Nutrient Requirements of Dogs and Cats, which is based on researched performed by the National Research Council. The actual citation is as follows:
National Research Council (US). Ad Hoc Committee on Dog and Cat Nutrition (2006). Nutrient Requirements of Adult Dogs for Maintenance, Table 15-5, pgs 359-360. In Nutrient Requirements of Dogs and Cats. Washington, DC: National Academies Press

UPDATE February 2017:
I received a message from a spreadsheet user who says some of the fields on the second page aren’t loading properly on her download. Combined with some other feedback I’ve been getting about the second page of the sheet specifically, I think it might be time to give the spreadsheet a bit of an overhaul. Thanks to everyone who has taken the time to send a message!

UPDATE September 2017:
It’s official, some major work has been done on the next generation of the spreadsheet. I still have a lot of proofing and checking to do, but it’s happening! Check back in coming weeks/months, and/or “like” the Facebook page and make sure that you’re set up to receive notifications so that you don’t miss this new opportunity as soon as it’s ready!

 


Click on the link and the file should automatically download. You will need software on your computer to use the spreadsheet. It is an Excel spreadsheet file (.xls), but also works in Open Office. If you have any problems or questions please feel free to comment below. And now I bring you — as at least one raw feeder calls it –“The Spreadsheet Of Your Dreams”:

Spreadsheet Of Your Dreams Download

http://www.packlunchraw.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/raw_calculator_spreadsheet.xls


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21 thoughts on “SPREADSHEET

    1. Head Chef Post author

      So glad you’re finding it useful. Anything I/we can do to make a raw/NR breeder not feel alone! There are many of you out there, and need to be far more. I feel strongly about supporting what I consider to be truly respectable breeders, which of course includes providing dogs and their pups with the foundations of good health, both in individuals and pedigrees. Thanks for leaving the comment!

      Reply
    1. Head Chef Post author

      Sorry you’re having trouble with the download. Sometimes security features prevent you from being able to download files from the web. I sent you the file attached to an email, hopefully that works and you find the spreadsheet useful!

      Reply
        1. Head Chef Post author

          Hi Viv, I just sent you an email with attached files. Please let me know if it works!

          Anika

          Reply
  1. Paul

    I’m get a 8 week old puppy and it is recommended that they eat 40-60% raw meaty bones, do you have a spreadsheet already tailored to puppies.

    Thank you
    Paul

    Reply
    1. Head Chef Post author

      Hi Paul! Feeding puppies is a little bit different than feeding adults, so the spreadsheet can’t just be used “as-is”, as the amounts will be off. As of right now there is no puppy or cat/kitten spreadsheet like this one. You might find it helpful, though, as an illustration of ratios and nutrients.

      There two common ways of calculating how much to feed puppies, either based on their current weight or their projected adult weight. (Pound-for-pound puppies need to eat A LOT more than adults, especially when very young and when going thru growth spurts.) Your recommendation to feed “40%-60% RMBs” sounds like a throwback to diet proportion recommendations from Ian Billinghurst et al, which you don’t see as much currently. The “80-10-10” combo of numbers which breaks down a raw diet as 80% meat, 10% edible bone, and 10% organs is much more popular, and is just a slightly more specific way to talk about the same proportions.

      I’m sorry the spreadsheet won’t be of much use ’til your pup’s older, but in the mean time you might want to pick up a book or two and/or come to one of several great raw feeding communities that use Facebook groups to discuss things and answer questions. Find my recommendations here, if you haven’t seen it already: http://www.packlunchraw.com/books-websites/

      Reply
    1. Head Chef Post author

      Hi there! Yes, please feel free to share away to anyone who can find it useful. As long as the link you use online or in print is: http://www.packlunchraw.com/spreadsheet/ you’re well within our guidelines for use. Thanks so much for checking first! Greetings to another Canadian raw advocate and interest, too. Your product offerings look fantastic — among the first commercially available neck bones I’d consider buying, and BEAVER too! *cheers*

      Reply
  2. Haley H

    Hi! I’m so happy to have found your site. At this point, I’m considering a fusion type diet, with some cooked/prepared/dehydrated kibble meals and some raw…although my puppy will be coming home this July at 8 weeks old (Alaskan Malamute) so I have some time to formulate a hopefully complete and holistic healthy meal plan… completely raw feeding a large breed puppy seems really daunting, so I was planning on feeding partly dehydrated kibble everyday, with a rotation of:
    -green tripe on some days
    -home cooked on some days
    -raw meat grinds with some bones on other days…
    My local grocery can supply me with fresh, wild caught fish and I raise chickens for the eggs, those, along with the dehydrated kibbles would be a daily yummy goodness too.
    I’ve been formulating a diet based on the 80-10-10 ratio, but feel like the kibble provides what I could be missing in the other foods, and perhaps make it more economical.
    Is there any room for improvement here, and where would I even begin with raw feeding a large breed pup?

    Reply
    1. Head Chef Post author

      Lots of people feed diets that are part raw and part commercial foods and/or part cooked, part raw. If this works best for you and your pup, then go for it. Some raw feeders reel back in horror at the idea of feeding a diet that’s not strictly a raw diet, but it really does come down to what works and what doesn’t for the individual and one’s own household. One thing I’m fond of pointing out is that some fresh real food is better than none! If you don’t want to or feel you can’t feed a raw diet, then get as much fresh food into the dog as you can. It’s infinitely better than feeding a totally processed diet! The biggest problem I, personally, see in many diets of this type is that nice meaty bones that a dog really has to work at are under-emphasized or forgotten about completely! Make sure this doesn’t happen in your plan.

      Large breed pups aren’t really so different than other pups when it comes to feeding a raw diet. One should keep in mind if they’re feeling daunted by feeding a puppy that commercial foods have historically made different formulas for different life stages because their adult formulas are so full of fillers and other unsuitable ingredients that they’re not capable of delivering the right stuff for a growing dog! That’s a problem with food quality and formulation, not a problem with feeding a puppy. The main differences in feeding a pup vs. an adult is the amount of food pound-for-pound and the frequency of feedings, not in what you need to feed on a nutritional level. If you’re familiar and comfortable with the concept of the “prey model” and/or the 80-10-10 derivative, then you can feed a pup just as well as an adult dog. I, personally, think that feeding a good solid raw diet is many times easier and more reliable than trying to work in commercial foods. The issue of expense is understandable, but there are ways to feed raw quite cheaply if you put work into finding sources, and conversely ‘good’ kibbles and other commercial foods aren’t exactly cheap. You’re totally in control of what raw meat, bones, and organs and any extras you choose to feed, whereas with commercially prepared blends you’re more or less in the dark. Labeling will not and can not accurately describe what’s in the package you’re feeding past a certain degree. There are several reasons for this, and ethical, well meaning, high-quality food producing companies are not exempt from this problem.

      Don’t rely on one form of food to make up for perceived problems with another form of food, and remember that excesses can be just as bad as deficiencies. You’ll want to choose your commercial foods carefully for this reason, and use common sense as well as knowledge of these other cooked and raw items that you want to include. The fact that you want to feed so many different things will actually probably be to your ultimate benefit, as variety tends to work itself out and dogs are pretty adaptable beings, but variety isn’t a failsafe for poor decisions, uneducated decisions, and/or not being aware of what you’re doing in the big-picture. Large breed dogs are especially prone to problems arising from simply too much calcium in the diet, as well as an imbalances of other nutrients affecting the uptake and use of calcium in the body.

      Congrats on the pup! I’m a sucker for the northern working breeds and have a soft spot for malamutes specifically! Such wonderful dogs. I’m glad you’ve found the site useful so far. 🙂

      Reply
    1. Head Chef Post author

      Hi Remi,

      I don’t have a cat-specific spreadsheet at this time. A lot of the info in this spreadsheet might be useful, as the general percentages of meat/bone/organ are applicable to cats, therefore the item and nutrient breakdowns carry over too. The main differences with cats are feeding percentages, appropriate items, and the fact that — as obligate carnivores — cats should not be fed many non-animal-sourced “extras” or a significant fruit/veg content, like many people choose to do with dogs.

      Generally speaking, like dogs, the feeding guidelines for cats is still about 2%-4% of their body weight per day. In that, the spreadsheet for dogs can still provide insight into your cat’s diet. Note that you can enter the weight including decimals into the body weight field on the spreadsheet, which will give you more accuracy given a relatively small animal where half- and quarter-pound increments are meaningful. House cats don’t have the body-size range that dogs do, so when looking up information on feeding cats a raw diet online or in books you might come across info that is a little too narrowly focused — like feeding 100g of raw food a day, period. Activity levels are also something that is hardly constant from household to household, so fine tuning your cats’ needs might take a bit of time and observation.

      I’m so glad you wrote and expressed interest in cat-specific raw feeding! I really feel cats have gotten the short end of the stick in feeding and care historically, as they’re constantly compared to dogs and people, of which their needs are exactly like either. I have been working on some cat-specific content for Pack Lunch for a while now. I will endeavor to get some of that finalized and posted! I will also relate your interest about a cat spreadsheet to the folks who designed this one and see if anyone has an interest in developing one. If you decide to take on the project yourself I’d be more than happy to give my thoughts.

      Anika

      Reply
  3. Harang

    Hi. I wanna eat raw food for my dogs. I need your help. I have a problem. I can open on the website but can’t download to edit. Please can you send it to me?

    Reply
    1. Head Chef Post author

      Hi Harang, I’d be happy to send you the file, but I’ll need an email address. Please email me at the address provided on the homepage and I’ll get that to you!

      Reply
  4. Anne

    Hi, I’ve been using the spreadsheet and am trying to dig into what the nutrient requirements are in the NRC guidelines. Can you tell me in your spreadsheet what the “ME” stand for in the “Amt./1,000Kcal ME” column?

    Thank you!
    Anne

    Reply
  5. Linda

    I am also interested in a spreadsheet for a cat-specific raw diet. Any update on that? I see there was an inquiry about this 10 months ago and an indication that some work was already being done toward materializing such.

    We took in a stray/feral cat who was estimated to be 4 months of age when we got her, so she is about 6 months of age now. As far as we know, kitty has always had wild prey, except for the 6 weeks it has taken me to significantly research raw feeding. Over the last 2 weeks she has easily transitioned to raw. I am using the Frankenprey approach (until I can source at least occasional whole prey). There is a lot to figure out and keep track of and it is taking a lot of time. We are not drawing on any prior experience! : )

    Reply
    1. Head Chef Post author

      Hi Linda,

      I am indeed doing major rework of the spreadsheet. One for cats is on the horizon, but not ready to go yet. Thanks for letting me know you’re interested. Pack Lunch is a solo endeavor and I have to chip away at projects in my “free” time, so being able to prioritize based on interest is really helpful!

      I’m glad your kitty took to raw feeding easily. It sounds like you’re off to a good start with a good foundation! I know it can all seem pretty daunting at first, but with experience it will get easier. I’ll be plugging away at the spreadsheet work in the mean time.

      Thanks,
      Anika

      Reply
  6. Linda

    Hi, Anika,

    I am so happy that you are continuing to plug away at a feline-based spreadsheet. Thank you for your efforts! I appreciate all the help I am receiving from much more experienced pet slaves than me.

    As much as my young cat is taking to raw, I am mystified as to why some days she seems to be able to gnaw away at larger chunks of meat — say a chicken leg (with me having cut the meat and skin partially away from the bone so she will have the courage to go for it), and then a chunk of beef heart that she walks away from, so I then cut it into four 1/4″ x 1/2″ pieces, and she chomps two of them down (I watched her and it looked like she was gnawing it, not inhaling it), only to walk away, sure she is managing just fine, and come back several minutes later and see she had vomited up the meat (or regurgitated it, perhaps), nearly intact, along with the blood drippings I’d given her.

    I then chopped the remaining pieces into approximately 1/4″ x 1/4″, and put a little canned salmon on top (to entice her to try again), but she picked the salmon off the top and wouldn’t touch the beef heart.

    Then I chopped the heart quite finely and sprinkled more flaked salmon on top and mixed a bit into the heart mince, and she ate it all.

    Oh — and I am warming the foods with a 3-bowl system. I fill one bowl with very warm water, placing another more shallow bowl (with the foods in it) whose rim rests on top of the rim of the deeper bowl and the basin is then surrounded on three sides by warm water, and I then place a third bowl upside down, like a dome lid, over the top and warm the food on one side, then turn it over and warm the other side. So kitty isn’t getting cold food.

    Any thoughts on this? I realize this site is especially for dogs, but you seem to have some kitty knowledge, too.

    Reply

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