What everybody ought to know about defrosting Raw Dog Food
For raw feeding to be a success you need to get into the swing of planning ahead. Timing the length it takes to defrost a meal safely can take some getting used to, it isn't like dry or wet feeding and to be done safely takes hours.
So what is the Best Method?
Without a doubt, the best method is overnight in the fridge. Put the meat into a leak-proof container and put it on the bottom shelf the night before. This avoids messy drips or cross-contamination onto your own food. A 500g container will take 10-12 hours to defrost this way. The best thing to do is take out 2-3 days worth of meals, depending on how much space you have. Raw meat should be consumed within 3 days if stored this way in the fridge.
What about on the countertop?
No, do not do this, it is too warm. What happens is the outside defrosts and the middle stays frozen. This encourages bacteria to grow on the defrosted part when it reaches room temperature. The danger zone is 40-140 degrees celsius where bacteria begin to multiply. Remember you aren't going to cook it afterwards either, they will eat it as it is.
What if I forget to take it out the night before?
You could try cold water defrosting. This still takes a few hours but not 10-12 like overnight. Place your dog's meat in a waterproof bag and submerge in a bucket of cold water. Do not use hot water (this can even slightly cook the outside of the meat if it is too hot). Change the water every 20 mins, until thawed.
What about Microwaving?
I don't know about you, but the success of defrosting meat in a microwave is very hit and miss! The meat seems to turn from frozen to cooked rubber as soon as you turn away. You also risk the chance of cooking the bone which makes them sharp and potentially dangerous. The nutritional value of anything that has been microwaved is also questionable.
What do I do then?
Our best advice is to either fast your dog that day (a common raw feeding practice), give it frozen, which will certainly keep them occupied although some dogs, especially in colder climates, may not appreciate this or the best thing to do is have a high-quality alternative to raw as a backup.
Wolfworthy contains all the ingredients you would expect in a good raw diet. We use a high proportion of fresh meat in our recipe and even include the amazing organ meat which packs a nutritional punch.
Knowing you have a back up for the time when you didn't take out the raw is sensible. It is not a relaxing feeling looking at you dog who is expecting his dinner when there is none ready. This will only force you to make bad choices on the defrosting front and possibly make your dog sick.
If you have any other questions our Help page is packed full of information on our food