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Dual Purpose Dogs

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Canine Health & Diet

There are many reviews regarding why there has been seen to be an increase in canine cancers and general allergy related conditions,

so we advise everyone to take some time to browse through such, then work out what, if anything, rings true to you and what changes, if any, you are able to put in place to aid your dog's lifetime health.


Ailments generally tend to involve 'inflammation' and a major contributing factor to this is 'toxic load'.   

Why are toxins getting in our dog's bodies?  Well, there are several reported contributing factors to this:

Diet - does manufactured feed increase daily toxic load?
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Having ourselves read review after review of what is thought to be the best way to feed our domestic dogs

we were initially left feeing dizzy with the many differences of opinion when it came to raw feed vs kibble.  

We finally went with our belief that the benefits of raw feed outweigh those of kibble.  One reason being, in order to create kibble there will unavoidably be a product content which is not of any health benefit to a dog's diet and which is reported to increase daily toxic load but which is seen far less if at all in raw feeding.

We decided to follow the (B.A.R.F.) "Biologically Appropriate Raw Food" or "Bones And Raw Food" diet.


Did we notice any immediate major difference in our dogs health after changing from kibble to raw?  -  No

but then we would like to think we were previously using a quality grade of kibble before changing


Did we notice any major difference in our dog's behaviour after going onto raw?  -  No

well not other than them becoming much more interested at their meal time...


What we did notice was a difference in their 'deposits'.  We personally believe that a lot of the kibble previously fed was being simply excreted whereas more of the raw food appears to be absorbed through the digestive process, so to us this says raw is more nutritionally beneficial to the dog's natural system, being fully utilised without unnecessary manufactured toxic bulk.

Take the fear out of feeding your puppy a Raw Food Diet

Do your research and don't

hesitate to ask for advice

When we changed to raw, we looked into which raw feed suppliers to use; whether to use complete raw food packs or become a so called D.I.Y.'er plus we asked for advice from raw feed specialists to help us achieve the correct balance of meat, bone, offal and low carbohydrates (if any).


We've acquired sufficient freezer storage as raw feed needs to be frozen for at least two weeks before defrosting for consumption. 


We also considered the risk element of feeding raw bones as there are recorded cases of some devastating outcomes which have not always been simply due to feeding bones incorrectly.

We have continually found raw feeding suits us and our dogs and would always firstly recommend this however we do appreciate that this does not suit every dog or dog owner so we suggest taking a look for other alternatives - such as 'Freeze Dried Raw' would be our second recommendation 

Freeze Dried Raw
Is your dog's diet balanced
Is your dog's diet balanced

-  Review all the feed options available

-  Check the 'actual' contents in the product you in intend to feed

-  If you want to use commercially prepared dog food then select relatively toxic-free products

-  Be comfortable with your choice

-  Ensure, which ever type of feed you decide on, that it is: 

    good quality and part of a well balanced diet to suit the dog's needs

Because we have not fed kibble for a long time now, it is hard for us to recommend a particular brand but we shall endeavour to help our puppy buyers make the best choice, based on information we have available at the time.
If you have chosen to feed raw then at the bottom of the page are some recommended sites providing information to help you and guide you through how to introduce raw, how much to feed and what to include in raw feed.
Daily Toxic Load
Daily Toxic Load - other sources
Environment - this comes in the form of pesticides, fertilisers, herbicides, what cleaning products are used in the house, the cleaning products we use on our pets and even the fluorinated water we give our pets to drink (which can often be unknowingly high in mineral content) - these all play a big part in daily toxic load.  (On many occasions I see our dogs walk straight past their indoor water bowls, even though we give them fresh filtered water, and go outside to drink natural rain water instead...)

Preventative treatments - unfortunately it has also been reported that toxic load can be increased through the preventative treatments we have become accustomed to using on our pets, such as inoculations, flea, tick and worming products.   Many years ago, our Vet advised that a complete range of vaccination was not required annually and recommended reducing to every 3 years, so why are some vets still advising to have these every year? 
Dog Health - Chilternway Dual Purpose Dogs
The availability of Titer testing, for us, has shown that our dogs tend to hold an immunity level for even longer so we very rarely vaccinate our dogs if at all.   An alternative for vaccines is homeopathic nosodes, which we have found to be beneficial for peace of mind.  If you need to vaccinate, we would personally suggest using Zoetis - Versican Plus (avoiding Nobivac & Canigen) and if Lepto is needed at all, ask for Lepto 2 (avoiding Lepto 4).    

The Weimaraner seems to be at higher risk for autoimmune reactions to certain vaccination protocols.  As a precautionary measure, the Weimaraner Club of America recommends that Weimaraner pups being vaccinated have parvo and distemper shots separately, about two weeks apart but this becomes impossible if veterinary practices use combination vaccines. 
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Worm level counts can also be tested prior to treatment but even without testing, our Veterinary practice have changed from recommending worming every 3 months to up to every 6 months (dependent on the animals environment).  And as for flea and tick prevention there is an abundance of natural products just as effective but you should definitely avoid any chemical treatments containing Isoxazoline.
I cannot remember the last time I applied chemical flea and tick treatments to our dogs.  We use an aloe vera and eucalyptus spray mix when ticks are at their most active (betwwen March to mid-May and from mid-August to November).  Given we have deer living out the back to us, we do average a couple of ticks annually but we have never had a flea infestation (not even when the dogs are out picking up wild animals full of such).  Another alternative recommended is to use flea and tick collars which usually give up to 8 months protection. 
Natural Supplements
Natural Supplements 
Whether because of injury, illness or simply old age (all of which can contribute to inflammation), we sometimes need a little bit of help with nutrient intake but supplements should not be relied upon to fill the gaps in a poor diet long-term.

It can however be beneficial to supplement with probiotics every now and then to support good bacteria within the gut.  Fiber also plays a massive part in gut health and a healthy fiber intake can reduce common problems such as diarrhoea plus blocked or leaky annal glands.

Turmeric is an ancient natural product renowned for reducing inflammation as is Black Seed Oil.  
Other nutrients to help with reducing toxicity, supporting gut health, immune system plus supporting joint function can be found in natural extracts such as Aloe Vera, Apple Cider Vinegar, Coconut Oil and Omega-3 Fatty Acids are extremely beneficial.

Natural products are of particular interest to us and we are pleased to be able share information
on such within our Natural Health pages - the power and versatility of natural extracts,
natural products for both you and your pets!   Aloe Vera products in particular are so beneficial
when it comes to cleansing, soothing irritations and healing skin.
Canine Natural Products - Chilternway Dual Purpose Dogs
Common Health Conditions
Common Health Conditions
Bloat - unfortunately this is quite common in deep-chested dogs.  The basic prevention is to leave a good hour gap between exercise and feed but we advise you to read-up on what the signs are to watch out for, as immediate veterinary assistance will be required.​

Lipomas (fatty lumps) - Our recommendation is to have lumps checked to clarify whether benign and ensure not impeding physical function.  Lipomas do seem to baffle the veterinary professionals but then veterinary care is generally orientated towards treating an acquired condition rather than treating the body as a whole entity.  Our oldest dog had lots of fatty lumps, some initially removed but any new ones then left alone. 
If you read up on this, it will lead you back to the question of toxic load, induced possibly from inflammation by injury.  I can agree with this because I have seen them appear after a heavy knock.  Removal does not seem to address the root cause and it is common for regrowth of more lipomas in the area traumatised from surgery.  It is said you can stop the formation of these by treating the root cause but, we personally feel, in older dogs it is near on impossible to eliminate all toxicity, however it is worth having a pet physio check that their back is not injured or tight and preventing the energy flow (meridians) through the body's channels.  Suggested natural topical treatment for Lipomas is Sage extract, applied daily, as Sage has a natural affinity to attract fat but again you need to read between the lines because sage needs to be used in moderation.  As well as supplementing Turmeric Golden Paste to your dog's diet, Golden Paste can be applied topically but do be aware of possible transfer and staining.

Mast Cell Tumours - As mentioned, canine cancers seem to be on the increase so lumps and bumps should be checked by a veterinarian and graded so that you can ascertain a form of action.  Some tumours can simply be removed, others require further treatment.
Allergies.  We believe the above reference to toxic load is likely the root cause for most allergies.  However, whilst trying to reduce toxins and reduce inflammation, it can be difficult to work through what is triggering the allergic reaction.  Common triggers can be food (frequently chicken and grain) or it can even be a basic intolerance to grass/foliage,  It can be a long and sometimes costly process but it is worth searching for the cause before administering long-term medication.


Dual Purpose Dogs

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(Princes Risborough, Buckinghamshire)

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DogsNaturally - recommended by Chilternway Dual Purpose Dogs
Rebels Raw Feeding - recommended by Chilternway Dual Purpose Dogs
Some guides to raw feeding
Some Raw Feed Companies
Nature's Menu Raw Is Best - recommended by Chilternway Dual Purpose Dogs
bella and duke raw feed
Albion Raw Food - recommended by Chilternway Dual Purpose Dogs
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Nutriment Raw Feed
Finer By Nature - recommended by Chilternway Dual Purpose Dogs
A couple of books you may want to read:
Some Freeze Dried Raw Feed Companies
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Nature's Menu Raw Is Best - recommended by Chilternway Dual Purpose Dogs
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