By Dr. Jeannie Thomason
Tripe is truly awesome, offal – not only does it provide completely natural digestive enzymes to the dog eating it but also vitamins, fatty acids and amino acid and natural probiotics.
Offal is the viscera, paunch, trimmings or any waste or by-product of the butchering process.
Tripe is the raw stomach tissue/lining of ruminating animals (cows, sheep, goats and deer, basically anything that has four hooves, four chambers in their stomach and eats grass) “fourth” stomach, or abomassum, where the actual digestion of the grasses and grains the animal has ingested takes place.
There are 3 types of tripe: Bleached, Cleaned and Green. Green tripe is also referred to as â€œunbleachedâ€ tripe since it has not been altered and is a green or grayish, green in color. Bleached tripe is white in color and has been â€œbleachedâ€* and scalded to kill bacteria and remove the color making it fit for human consumption but this process greatly lessens is nutritional value for our carnivore companions. Washed tripe is normally a little more grey in color, had had the contents removed, and has only been lightly rinsed and has not been cleaned to the same degree as bleached tripe. Green tripe normally has the contents removed however, it is not washed at all. It is the most natural form of tripe because it is not altered at all once removed from the carcass.
Nutritional and Healing Benefits
The following excerpt from Juliette de Bairacli Levy’s book, The Complete Herbal Book for the Dog, says it best:
“I would suggest breeders make good use of such flesh foods as the following:â€¦paunches of all animals (the raw, uncleaned paunches of healthy grass-fed animals can be fed with much benefit to all breeds of dogs). I learned this from a gypsy in the Forest of Dean: this man had bred many famous greyhounds, and he told me that such fare was the finest of natural food tonics.”
If whole tripe can be fed (not ground) the enzymes are said to not only help digestion in the canine but are also said to have a substantial effect on the cleaning of your dog’s teeth.Also, because of its rubbery texture, serving it in large chunks also aids the canine in strengthening it’s jaw muscles and has an added benefit as a form of “canine dental floss” if you will.
All dogs need omega 3’s and some omega 6’s in their diet, especially to maintain healthy skin and coat. Tripe contains 7.9mg of total Omega-3 fatty acids per 4oz serving.
Vitamins & Minerals
The vitamins, minerals, and amino acids are in large part what gives your dog energy and spunk, green tripe has those to spare.
The amino acids are necessary for muscular development.
Tripe contains the following minerals per 4 oz serving:
Zinc 1.6 mg
The calcium:phosphorus ratio of green tripe is near perfect (1:1) where as in raw muscle meat it is 1:6.
Green tripe is an excellent source of probiotics due to the large numbers of helpful microorganisms contained within the digestive tract of the cow, deer or goat. Tripe has high levels of Lactic Acid bacteria, lactic acid bacteria is better known as lactobacillus Acidophilus which is the good intestinal bacteria. How great to be able to get this probiotic in a natural form and grown in the prey animal/food instead of grown in a laboratory!
Naturally occurring organisms are always preferable to man-made mixtures and nothing can be more natural than having them go straight from the source to the dog.
Green tripe is an incredibly gentle and easily digested food. It is often the first thing that raw feeding breeders introduce their puppies to as young as 3-4 weeks old. Tripe is also indicated for dogs suffering from sensitive stomachs and maladies such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Used in conjunction with probiotics, tripe can often ease the discomfort of dogs who are just not digesting their food well all without bombarding them with traditional medicines and chemicals.
Nature’s way of healing. Green tripe is also a spectacular food for dogs suffering from Chronic Renal Failure and kidney disease due to its low phosphorus levels and palatability. Tripe is often suggested to feed dogs and/or cats with CRF. It is the odd dog that turns its nose up at a healthy serving of stinky tripe and its perfect phosphorus/calcium ratio, mid-level protein levels and slightly acidic Ph which makes it safe and effective for these dogs.
One of the main unfounded fears many people have about feeding raw meat, especially green tripe, is that of salmonella and e coli. Let’s remember that a dog is a carnivore and as such is designed to eat not only raw meat and bones but in the wild, it is the intestines that are gone for first in their freshly killed prey. If you still have fears of bad bacteria and your carnivore, please read the article I wrote with Dr. Kim Bloomer on Salmonella. This really is not a concern for carnivores.
Except for the rather pungent odor that we humans often have a hard time “stomaching”, (our carnivore companions go silly over some pretty strong and rotting smells) raw, green tripe is a nearly perfect food in every way.
Dr. Jeannie feeds Raw Paws Green Tripe that is from pasture raised/grass fed cows.
*method for bleaching tripe economically. In particular, the method of the present invention employs certain peracid compositions as tripe bleaching or whitening agents. These compositions are applied using aqueous mixtures of peracid precursor and hydrogen peroxide, thereby permitting automation of tripe preparation in a continuous process. http://www.patentstorm.us/patents/6348226/description.html
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NOTE: The information in this article and on this site is based on the traditional and historic use of naturopathy and species specific nutrition as well as the author’s personal experience. This information is provided for general reference and educational purposes only. It is not intended to diagnose, prescribe or to provide any advice specific to the circumstances of any animal without individual consultation, and should not be relied upon in that regard. We encourage all our clients to seek diagnoses from holistic veterinary practitioners and to pass this information on to us during consultation along with their own understanding of the health issues involved.
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