For those of you that don’t know I have switched jobs which means no more free pre-made for me. Even though I factored the cost into my new budget it is hard to hand over my card week after week, so that has prompted me to consider homemade raw dog food. Being that I am lazy I have felt that DIY raw is way beyond me, but thing might have changed. There is a new raw feeding dog food book out that has empowered me, The Lazy Raw Feeder, to give it a shot. Below is an interview with the author about who, what, and why of Dad Dog Offical.
Raw Feeding 101
My name is Scott Jay Marshall II or “Dog Dad” as my followers know me.
The Dog Dad Offical’s raw story?
I am VERY happy to say that my raw feeding story did not start with pain and sadness like so many others’ do. My raw feeding story started with Wolken, my first dog. I had been looking into german shepherds and raw feeding for a long time when a professional breeder (not a backyard breeder) I knew reached out when Wolken’s original owner had to give him up. They moved to a home with an HOA that didn’t allow german shepherds and couldn’t keep him on the side of their friends’ house anymore. Wolken spent the 4 months before coming to us in a kennel only being let out to go to the bathroom. His kennel was so caked with mud when we got it that I thought it had rusted over. Nope, just caked in mud.
After a lot more research and about 2 months of time with Wolken, we decided to dive in. I remember his first meal was a bone in chicken breast with the skin off. Our landlord at the time’s houseguest watched as we did it making comments like, “You know you’re going to get your dog sick right?” We, of course, know he was wrong. 😉
Then Horus (Wolken’s full blood brother) came to us and was immediately switched to raw within hours of being in our home. Fast forward 8 years and here we are!
Experience & qualifications?
While I am a certified raw dog food nutrition specialist, I feel that my most important experience and qualification is the 8 years I’ve spent raw feeding and the people I’ve helped make the switch. Nothing has taught me more than feeding my own dogs, finding solutions to their issues, and helping my clients/students/readers do the same.
Don’t get me wrong, the certification course was amazing and so are all the other books and programs on the market. (at least the ones I’ve taken and read like a Novice’s Guide to Raw Feeding for Dogs) That being said, nothing teaches you more than real-world experience.
Theory is awesome, application is a whole other animal. – Scott Jay Marshall II
Why this book?
There were lots of reasons that contributed to the book being published. Creating another source of revenue for my business, widening my reach as “Dog Dad” and so on but the most important reason was providing a different source of information for dog owners to use to get their dogs transitioned to raw feeding.
The Raw Feeding 101 course was an amazing success and helped hundreds of people get thousands of dogs transitioned to a raw diet but it wasn’t for everyone. Some people simply don’t learn well from video and audio content.
To give a little context here, the course is 70 videos and downloadable resources that walks beginners through the whole transition process. Sourcing food, keeping costs down, the actual transition and so on. Again though, video isn’t for everyone. I had countless people ask me questions like, “Is there a book version of this course?” or “Do you have a book that has this same information?” which I had to say no to at the time. To me, that just wasn’t acceptable. The fact that someone prefers books or doesn’t learn well from video content shouldn’t prevent them from learning how to provide their dog with a better life.
Favorite part of the book?
I think that my favorite part of the book is the part of the book where I share “Monica’s Story”. The full story is in the book but here is the short version. Monica’s dog Ray Ray was diagnosed with kidney failure and they were told he had 1-3 days left. “Take him home and make him comfortable.” was all they could. At least that’s what they were told. Monica was able to find my content and Kimberly Gauthier’s content and something amazing happened. One day turned into ten months and one day. Instead of losing Ray Ray the next day, they got 10 more months together.
That’s my favorite part and a real testament to the power that raw feeding and fresh foods hold.
Most important part of the book?
I think the most important part is a tie between the “Overcoming Mental Barriers” chapter and the “The Transition” chapter.
The transition chapter is so crucial because it gives people a clear path. I’m not saying that it’s the only way to transition dogs, in fact, I recommend other resources in my weekly group live streams on YouTube on a regular basis. That being said, people get in trouble when they try and piece together transition advice.
Again, this isn’t because my way is right and everyone else’s is wrong, it’s because a lot of the different methods contradict each other. So this well-meaning pet parent ends up getting frustrated and might quit because they can’t seem to find consistent methods of switching and they’re afraid of “doing it wrong”. The transition chapter takes care of that by giving them step by step instructions so they don’t have to guess and/or mix and match transition advice.
Then there is the overcoming mental barriers chapter. Other than becoming confused by the actual mechanics of making the transition, the stuff rambling around in people’s heads are the biggest obstacles to the switch.
Doubt, fear, confusion, frustration, nervousness and more all play a part and they shouldn’t feel bad about it. Most of us were there at one point or another. The problem is that these things can often prevent someone from making the switch. The overcoming mental barriers chapter is all about getting past that and learning how to trust yourself with “this whole raw feeding thing”.
What you hope this book will provide?
Confidence with the mechanics, what to feed, how to feed bones, how much to feed, what supplements you do and don’t need, all of it. These are the things that prevent people from switching and that honestly make them want to put their heads through a wall when they research on their own.
I have a course student that I recently interviewed on my YouTube channel whose dog was throwing up blood and had diarrhea for months on end. It got so bad that she was having cleaners come to sanitize and clean her floors. She was even sleeping on the kitchen floor with her dog (Jackson) because it was the only place she could easily clean things up.
The vet couldn’t do anything and just kept putting him on this drug and that and switching him from homemade foods to expensive prescription kibbles. She wanted to switch her dog to raw because she had hopes that it would help but the lack of consistent information and reliable answers on the internet left her in tears. She knew her dog wouldn’t make it long living a life like that and she couldn’t make the switch because she wasn’t confident in her ability to make the switch… Luckily for Jackson and her, she found the Raw Feeding 101 course. In no time at all, he had his first solid stool in months and was back to dog sports. (He looks like a bunch of springs attached to fur and teeth with all that energy he has now.)
I tell this story because it wasn’t a lack of information or desire that prevented this student from making the switch, it was the lack of confidence to do so.
Confidence, that’s what I want this book to give people. – Dog Dad Offical
I live in Utah with my wife Arianne and my two german shepherds Wolken and Horus. I run a YouTube channel called “Dog Dad”, a Facebook group of over 15k people called “Raw Feeding 101 – Learn To Feed Raw”, I created the online raw feeding course at rawfeeding101.com, and I recently published my new book “Raw Feeding 101 – Beginner’s Raw Feeding Guide”.
Full Disclosure: I was already lucky enough to have Dog Dad as a raw feeding friend before I read this. Actually, I only read this book because I already respect him as a fellow feeder and like him as a human. Also, I was completely blown away by how he was able to present such a complicated topic in a clean and effective way that even inspired me to learn more.