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Best organ meats?

February 12th, 2008, 06:22 PM
Okay, so I think I've put together a fairly solid recipe for making the patties I mentioned in my other thread for my mom's 7-month-old poodle.

1 lb ground lamb
1 can of Solid Gold Beef Tripe diet
1 whole egg
2 leaves of kale
handful of blueberries

The kale, egg and blueberries I'm going to puree together and mix in with the meats. I want to add liver and heart to the recipe, but I'm unsure of how much. I was just going to eyeball it.

In my research, I found that kale and blueberries are high in antioxidants and other nutrients, so I decided to throw those in there since mom said Baxter wouldn't touch the veggies she'd offered him. Of course, it's my mom, so she just tried giving him whole carrots and broccoli instead of pulverizing them and mixing them with meat. :rolleyes:

Also, I found some products by Free Range Dog Treats. They have dehydrated lamb lung, trachea, etc. I was wondering which choices would be best to use as a treat. I'm leaning toward the trachea at the moment, because the patties will already have liver, heart and tripe in them. But their "trail mix" has a good mix of muscle, liver, lung and tripe so he wouldn't be getting the same thing all the time. I'd get both, but the stuff is pretty pricey. What do you think? The trachea or the trail mix?

February 12th, 2008, 06:41 PM
id go with trail mix. what are you giving for calcium? i know kale has calcium in it but not near enough to balance out the meat. will this be her main staple or will you also be feding other meals?? im sorry if i missed your other thread, been busy on this end. :)


February 12th, 2008, 06:58 PM
Basically the gist of the other thread is that my mom wanted to try feeding raw, so I printed off all kinds of information on how to get started and mailed them to her. A few weeks later, I find out she's feeding predominantly boneless meat, no organs, and lightly sears everything.:wall:

Last week I took her 8 lbs of chicken backs, and she's been incorporating some bone-in meat into Baxter's diet, although not always what I'd prefer. Like smoked pork neck instead of raw. But she's doing better.

The patties are a way to get organ meat into Baxter's diet, because she's uncomfortable handling it. The eggshell and kale has some calcium, but not enough, I know. Which is why in the other thread I asked about calcium supplements. I plan on buying a cheap coffee bean grinder and making some crushed eggshell powder for her to sprinkle over his meals until she establishes a routine with a good amount of bone in it.

I'm going down to visit with her this weekend, and I'll have her go through her freezer with me and I can help make suggestions where I see room for improvement. Basically, she just needs a lot of hand-holding. She's frustrated and overwhelmed.

February 12th, 2008, 08:41 PM
hey, my mom and sister were the same way. i ended up giving up on their dogs eating raw but a few of the things i did to work through it were to kinda pre package everything myself. all they had to do was thaw it and then dump it out for the dogs to eat. we were actually feeding her dog for under $40 a month!!

i would put a days worth of food in a quart freezer bag (i know, the horrible waste from it! we were working alternatives like tupperware) and then a weeks worth in a gallon bag. each were labeled for that day of the week. it made for very easy transitioning to other meats, hiding organ meats... makng sure they didnt actually have to handle the meat itself. as kids, mom use to make us butter up her turkeys cause she couldnt stand to touch it. :rolleyes:

ill have to hunt around to see how i missed your other thread. :) like i said before, been a heck of a week!!

oh, how bigs the dog?


February 12th, 2008, 09:28 PM
Baxter is about 13 lbs, last I checked.

Woo hoo! I just checked the website for the butcher's block at my university (I'm a pre-vet student), and they have some FANTASTIC deals!

Pork neck bones $0.99/lb
Lamb neck bones $1.89/lb
Liver $0.99/lb
Heart $0.99/lb
Tongue $1.19/lb

I'm stocking up on the neck bones, and will be using the liver, heart and tongue in the offal patties.

February 14th, 2008, 06:35 AM
2 leaves of kale

Please try to avoid giving your dog kale, spinich or any other strong greens. They are too high in oxylates and some, too high in Vitamin A for dogs. Foods high in h oxylates cause crystals in the bladder or serious issues with kidneys. These are not foods a dog would normally eat under any circumstances. If a dog was in renal failure, kale could actually kill it.

Unless your fruits are "juiced", so that the cellulose cap is broken open, the blueberries offer absolutely no nutritional value to your dog, (except unwanted sugars), so perhaps you could consider to take the same money and use it to purchase more meat? There is absolutely no nutritional calling for fruits or vegetables in a canine's diet, (just so you know). While yes, it's true we can process vegetable matter to extract nutrition in an attempt to heighten the overall value of a canine's diet, it's now quite un nessary to take that particular road. A good supply of meats/bone and offal will easily achieve the same thing.

If you are not sure, always stick with species appropriate foods, which primarily are whole meats or fish, (not ground by the way).
Your puppy has to masticate. It's an important health process. Ground meats rob your puppy of that opportunity.
The healthy ration is 80% whole meats-fish / 10% bone / 10% offal

Best of luck!:thumbs up

February 14th, 2008, 11:06 AM
Again, did you actually read my post at all? I already said the blueberries would be juiced in a blender.

And every raw site I've come across so far has said differing things on the subject of the importance of fruits and vegetables. They've also stressed the importance of leafy greens. So unless you're prepared to offer me a source for how dangerous kale is in small amounts (and I've fostered iguanas, so I already know all about oxalates and goitrogens) fed on occasion, I'm going to have to disagree with you. Keep in mind that I said 2 leaves, meaning that those two leaves would be spread out over a 1lb of meat + one can of tripe-based premium dog food + about a half pound total of offal, and then shaped into quarter pound patties to be given maybe twice a week. But hey, why risk it, so I'll use endive instead. Happy?

The ground meat is a necessity in this case. My mother won't touch organ meat, and the only way I can get her to feed it to Baxter is if I prepare it in a pre-made form where she can just take it out of the freezer and put it in his bowl. As I don't have a meat grinder (because I don't have a dog), I cannot grind bone-in meat myself, so I must use store-bought ground meat.

Once again, would you please actually read my posts thoroughly before jumping on my back about how I'm supposedly malnourishing my dog.

February 14th, 2008, 11:59 AM
A lot of people skim posts on here and never read the whole thing.

I suggest making friends with a butcher. That way when there's organ meat involved that you're buying from him/her anyway, sometimes they will grind and not charge you for it. I do that at the grocery store with people food because I make my own sausage now and then and like a specific amount of fat, choose the cut and ask the butcher to grind it which he always does and is very good about it.

I used to go yuck about handling organ meat too but just got over it. I still use knife/fork when handling it and never use my hands though. But the yuck factor is not near as bad. Hubby could care less. He's used to cleaning animals and fish.

You can toss liver into a food processor. Use fork/knife, whizz it and then remove from processor using a spatula. I imagine the same could be for hearts and what not.

There are some attachments to large bowl type mixers you can get, if you have the large mixer anyway. Anything from meat grinders to pasta roller/cutter. But they are kinda pricey.

Kale is excellent for people tho. It doesn't taste like much, but is a brassica family plant like cabbage and is full of nutrients. But I don't feed greens to my dogs. Would rather eat them myself. :laughing:

February 14th, 2008, 12:23 PM
You can toss liver into a food processor. Use fork/knife, whizz it and then remove from processor using a spatula. I imagine the same could be for hearts and what not.

:laughing: You know, I tried that a few years back when the vet I worked for wanted me to try making some homemade dog treats. One of the ones I experimented with called for pureed liver, which I couldn't find in the store, so I bought some calf liver and tried to puree it in my blender. It burned out the motor! Liver is such a tough, fibrous meat that it bound up the blades.

February 14th, 2008, 12:35 PM
LOL I never tried it myself, but have read where that's a common suggestion. Good to know that it might burn out the appliance! :laughing:

Where I get liver, it's sliced into 1/4 inch thick slices and Belle will swallow bits of that like a person eating oysters out of the shell. It's funny to watch.

February 14th, 2008, 07:07 PM
Once again, would you please actually read my posts thoroughly before jumping on my back about how I'm supposedly malnourishing my dog.

none of which I'm doing, but someone here was right, I did only read the trail message and didn't read the entire subject. Yes, I'll admit of that I'm guilty.

Last I looked canis lupus familliaris was no where near the same species as iguana, so this is a poor comparison.

The results of Oxylates and canine bladder crystals was published 4 years ago by Pfizer while testing for other issues. You can purchase and download the report from VetMed. It's there for the taking.

Do you know the work of Dr. David Mech?

February 14th, 2008, 09:37 PM
Last I looked canis lupus familliaris was no where near the same species as iguana, so this is a poor comparison.

:rolleyes: Way to miss the point. As a direct result of my work with iguanas and tortoises, I'm way more familiar with the nutritional breakdown of every type of green there is than your average person. And I'm telling you that the amount of oxalates in 2 leaves of kale, diluted by approximately 3 lbs of meat, and this mixture spread out into small increments to be fed over a period of six weeks (2 patties per week) won't kill any animal.

And I just did a cursory glance over some articles on oxalate poisoning in dogs, and whudoyaknow, a diet HIGH in oxalates must be fed before any effects can be seen, as the body converts the majority of oxalic acids into bicarbonate and formic acid. Also, the body will adapt to higher levels over time.

So my point stands: 2 leaves over 6 weeks will cause no damage whatsoever.

February 14th, 2008, 09:56 PM
In all fairness, when I first glanced at it, I thought you posted a recipe for one meal :shrug: which I thought was way too much as well.

Now that it's been made clear, I too, feed small amounts of juiced veggies to our dogs (approx. 1 tbsp daily). I have yet to find documentation that states it will harm them in such amounts, rather it may provide some benefits.

To answer your original question, and as MerlinsHope already stated, organs/offal should make up about 10% of the meal, or recipe in this case. I use liver, kidney, green tripe, sweetbread, and in very minute amounts, brain. Not all at the same time obviously but I vary them throughout a period of two to three weeks.

If you can find a poultry distributor/store in your area, you can ask if they could grind up chicken necks with chicken meat for you. Again, approx. 10% bone:80% meat. This would make the meal preparations easier for you.

February 26th, 2008, 08:33 AM
I'm not sure these really count as "organs", but I just discovered a hot bed of various parts I hadn't been finding anywhere else, so I have a few questions.

Anyone feed tongue? It would be a muscle meat, right? Is it worth feeding?

Brain? Anything I should know about it?

I also have the hardest time finding organs that do not come from a cow. Is it just that people only buy cow organs or am I just not finding the right place?

Thank you for humoring the vegetarian :laughing:

February 26th, 2008, 10:40 AM
Tongue is considered an organ, technically, but nutritionally I'm not sure how it compares to muscle vs. true organs.

Brains, I think, aren't very nutritionally complete. Sort of fatty, if I remember correctly.

My local Wal-Mart sells chicken livers, gizzards and hearts. Sometimes you can find local farmers through your Farmers Market that'll cut you deals on offal from lamb, goat, pig, etc. It's also good to work in a variety of different muscle meats, too.

February 26th, 2008, 10:42 AM
Virtually every part of prey is good meat. Tongues are excellent, so are brains. What you have to remember is that if your dog felled a prey, he/she'd only have one tongue, two kidneys, one liver and one heart. Those organs would represent a small percentage of the overall meal about to be eaten.

Chicken hearts and livers should be very available in most grocery stores. Pork livers and kidneys as well.

Is it possible that as a vegetarian you don't recognize them on the shelf?


February 26th, 2008, 10:52 AM
I figured it was all good, I'm just wondering if say, tongue or brain, should be fed in as small amounts as liver or not.

I certainly spend hours browsing meat, so at this point I'm pretty good at identifying the various parts (though different cuts are still a bit confusing), I think I just live in a yuppie neighbourhood where organs don't seem so popular. Even small butcher shops seem to only have the standard liver and kidney and look at me like I'm a total nutter if I ask about anything else.

I do feed the hearts, liver, gizzards (by the way, what are gizzards exactly?) that come inside whole chickens and turkey. I can get beef liver and kidney, and as I mentioned just found veal brain and tongue. Lamb organs I've never seen yet, porc liver I've seen on occasion, but I feel like there are more organs that I could be including, like pancreas maybe? Heart not from poultry? Just more of the insides I guess. :shrug:

February 26th, 2008, 11:13 AM
i actually only feed the oddball parts of beef such as liver, tongue, heart and cheek and scalded intestine (because its there mostly i guess). all of those are considered muscle meat but for the liver. brain.... id look into mad cow disease. i dont know enough about it to say one way or another if its in the cows brain or all over in a cow if infected. i sure wouldnt mind getting my hands on cow brain but id have to feel better abotu MCD first.

i can readily find the following in my local walmart-
scalded intestine
scalded stomach


scalded intestine


feet(not at walmart)

thats all aside from the usual stuff like various cuts of beef, pork, chicken, turkey and actually we can find duck, corning game hens and a few other odd ball stuff. never did find lamb at walmart though. i have to go to the actual butchers down the road for it. as for what most of those are for... i havent the foggiest. :o


February 26th, 2008, 11:48 AM
Reading all this makes me want to become a vegetarian....:laughing:

February 26th, 2008, 07:51 PM
I figured it was all good, I'm just wondering if say, tongue or brain, should be fed in as small amounts as liver or not.

That's kind of what I was getting at, too. Tongue, while considered an organ, seems more meaty to me, like actual muscle. And I have heard that brains are mostly fat.

I mentioned just found veal brain and tongue. Lamb organs I've never seen yet, porc liver I've seen on occasion, but I feel like there are more organs that I could be including, like pancreas maybe? Heart not from poultry? Just more of the insides I guess. :shrug:

Really? Because all I ever see is pork brains. Never veal or beef. Beef heart is usually kind of easy to come by. Check your local yellow pages for butchers and meat processing places. And like I said, when spring rolls around, stop by your Farmer's Market and strike up a conversation with a local meat producer.

February 26th, 2008, 08:10 PM
Seems to me I heard that the brain of a cow had something to do with the Mad cow disease and was adviced not to use/feed it.

But I really don't remember all the particulars about it,

I know some people make head cheese outta it, But I always hated the stuff

February 26th, 2008, 08:53 PM
Pitgirrl, have you gone to Fernando's on Roy (corner Colonial)? They have rabbit, pheasant, partridge, quail, deer too I think.

Alim-Pot, also on Roy, has quite the variety as well in their frozen section.

For frozen sardines and mackerel at the best prices, there's Epicerie Segal on St.Laurent near Duluth.

As for brains, yes, they are mostly fat. I often find it in our dogs' poop completely undigested :shrug: .

Pancreas would be labelled as stomach sweetbread and the thymus gland would be labelled as throat sweetbread. Veal and lamb is what's most commonly used.

February 26th, 2008, 09:10 PM
Ah, now I have the inside scoop on the Plateau and how meat is labeled! I always wondered what "sweetbreads" were :laughing: Thanks LP.