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Categories: Feeding a Raw Diet

Q. Wendy Vollhard and her husband have written a number of articles or books on feeding a raw diet. Some of your information is different that what they recommend. There seems to be a conflict among experts here. What are your thoughts?
Hello Ed and Cindy,

I recently obtained a pup from a breeder on the East coast. The pup actually came from Germany (pure ddr). Anyway, our breeder highly endorses the All Natural Diet of Wendy Volhard. I have been comparing the ingredient list that she recommends to the one you recommend and there are some major differences. For example, she lists several dairy products to supplement at times (cottage cheese, yogurt, etc.), she also recommends things like Brewers Yeast, Honey, Molasses, various Fruits, and a few select grains (in small portions). The info on your web site seems contrary to these ingredients. Are you familiar with Wendy Volhard and her nutrition recommendations? If so, what is your opinion of her guidelines? Who is to trust? Her web site is I would appreciate any advice that you would have to offer. Sometimes the battles of the experts can be very confusing and overwhelming. Thanks Ed!


A. I don’t agree with adding brewers yeast to any dogs diet, for any reason. We do use yogurt occasionally, for puppies and dogs that have had antibiotic therapy. Cottage cheese is given very occasionally to puppies and pregnant dogs. Grains are not necessary for dogs, and can cause many problems. We don’t use them.

The best advice I can give is to do research, educate yourself on what a dog is designed to eat and make a decision that you are comfortable with. This is a recent addition to our web site, and is a work in progress.

I don’t consider this a battle of experts, they have their opinions and reasons for feeding their dogs the way they recommend, as we do. I don’t know if the Vollhard's’ are breeders but if you want to find out how good your feeding regimen is, try breeding for a while. It’s the ultimate test of a diet. If the diet is inadequate you will have increased vet bills, smaller and weaker litters ,and reduced health and fertility in your breeding stock. We are constantly evolving in this area, but one thing I know for sure is that grains are not a part of our feeding regimen and our dogs have never looked better or been healthier. I believe that as breeders, we have much more experience than most and experience is a great learning tool. You have the luxury of learning from our mistakes and our successes.

The one rule for you to remember when taking care of your dogs is “there are no rules.” Do what works for your dog, and what you feel comfortable with. The important thing is never stop learning and asking questions. Good luck with your dog!

Thanks, Cindy Rhodes~Leerburg Kennel Manager

$25 off Michael Ellis 3 Day Workshop and Raising Your Puppy with Michael Ellis, and $15 off The Foundation of Puppy Bitework with Michael Ellis, good through Thursday, August 6, 2020 at 11:59 PM CT