I, too, struggled when I first started.

But once you know where to look, finding raw dog food, whether premade meals or individual ingredients for a homemade diet, is easier than you might think.

It involves dedication and establishing new shopping habits, only at first. With time, you'll become a seasoned pro. Until then, let's offer some actionable advice.

Look at the list below for my top suggestions on where to buy raw dog food.

Figuring out where to buy raw dog food when you're a new raw feeder can be challenging. 

Table of COntents:

Most large franchises, like PetCo and PetSmart, are beginning to carry commercial raw dog food or fresh-cooked diets, so it's worth looking at. I've found them to be grossly limited, though.

The smaller, independently owned and operated pet stores are often better. They tend to carry healthier pet food brands and have more extensive selections of raw dog food.

My favorite is Benson's Pet Center, but they're only available mainly in New York State. 

The first (and easiest place) to look is the local pet stores nearest you. They'll most likely carry raw food if they have a freezer section. 

If you're looking for something other than a brand or company that makes frozen meals, and want to know where to buy raw dog food in individual pieces and parts for assembling a raw diet at home, continue reading.

1. Brick & Mortar Pet Stores

I'm stating the obvious, but your local grocery store is still a decent place to shop for your dog.

The pet aisle will likely be limited. However, some grocery chains are adding freezers to their pet food aisles and carrying limited cooked or raw meals for dogs.

Your local grocery will never be the best source of premade raw dog food or other commercial pet products, but they are a quick and convenient stop for REAL food. 

Buy herbs, fruits, vegetables, and other everyday ingredients here. Watch sales, and you may find some affordable meat.

2. Regular Grocery Stores & Specialty Grocers

 Organs like liver, heart, and gizzards are also usually available. These icky pieces are often tucked away in a less-trafficked corner of the meat section but are worth finding because they're cheap.

Depending on the number of dogs you own and their size, there may be more financially viable options than sourcing meat from your grocery store. There are better options for deals, savings, and buying meat in bulk. 

Pro Tip: when sourcing novel proteins and less common pieces and parts, shop at specialty grocery stores and cultural food markets. These grocers may carry more organ, offal products, and exotic meats than the average big box grocery store.

The classic butcher shop is a favorite option of mine. 

Butchers carry a variety of protein choices, cuts of meat, and the less popular pieces and parts of your dog's favorite animals. 

At my local shop, Fred the Butcher, I've had great luck finding hearts, organs, and offal from various animals, not to mention novel proteins like rabbits.

Unlike most grocery stores, butcher shops are not a "what you see, is what you get" situation. 

3. Butchers

Talk to the staff; they can order items not found in the store and order in bulk, which drives the price down. Most butcher shops have many more options regarding the quality of the meat they sell, so finding something in your price range should be easier than the average grocery store.

Due to the popularity of raw diets, many butchers now carry raw meat scraps, recreational bones, and product offerings specifically for dogs. 

Bottom line:  they're flexible and can get their hands on just about anything if you ask. Butchers are a friendly bunch, and let's remember they're essentially meat connoisseurs. They're happy to help you with your meat needs!

In my experience, sourcing meat from our local butcher is a pleasant experience. Not only do the employees love hearing how I feed my dog raw meat, but they're eager to help. They even asked us to bring our dog by, making it a fun experience for everyone. Talk about customer service!

Warehouse clubs are retail stores that sell a wide variety of merchandise. Their most significant feature: they require customers to buy in large or wholesale quantities.

These clubs are attractive not only for bargain hunters but for raw feeders. They're a sensible choice when determining where to buy raw dog food. Prices are kept low due to the basic format of the stores (you're essentially shopping in a warehouse).

Some may even require customers to pay annual membership fees to shop. These stores are an excellent option for deals on buying meat in bulk.

Check out these stores:

4. Big Box Discount Stores, Warehouse Clubs, & Wholesalers

Restaurant Depot is a personal favorite of mine. It's a wholesale food service supplier.

Membership is free but you must show a valid reseller’s permit (business license) or tax-exempt certificate (for a nonprofit organization) and proof that you’re authorized to purchase for that business or organization.

If you don’t qualify, do you have any friends or family members that do? If so, go along with them on some shopping trips to stock up.

Sourcing meat from local farmers is another fantastic option.

Not only is it important to support local farms, but local meat is fresher since it doesn't have to travel as far to get to your dog's belly.

Local farmers are excellent for higher quality meats like grass-fed, organic, free-range, and certified human meats. Plus, it allows you to support farming practices important to you, like regenerative farming. 

Additionally, local farms usually have options for buying in bulk. I've seen many farms offer up a whole cow for purchase. Connecting with a local farmer makes buying organs and offal for your dog easier since it's not a popular food choice for people. You may be able to strike a deal for these less desirable products and parts. Remember that farmers are also a sensible choice for local produce like fruits and vegetables for your dog's raw diet.

Your local farmer is usually a good option for sourcing individual pieces and parts for a raw diet. Still, many farmers are beginning to carry their own lines of raw dog food and complete meals as the demand grows.

5. Farmers

Check out some of the sites below to help you find local farmers or a farmer’s market nearest you.

Local Harvest – Use this site to find farmers markets, family farms, and other sources of sustainable food near you.

Eat Wild – Has a great directory of U.S., Canadian and international farms and ranches that offer pasture raised and grass-fed beef and dairy products. Farms on Eat Wild assure that their animals and farmland are well treated and that their products are high in nutrition and free of antibiotics and added hormones.

Farmers Market.Com – A directory used to find farmers markets and local food sources.

Pro Tip:  Farmers markets can be a great way to meet local farmers in your area and are worth checking out. While they may not have a large variety of meat on hand, these markets usually provide a great chance to meet farmers in your area and discuss your needs.

If so, you’ve hit the raw feeding jackpot. Talk about free, high-quality meat. Deer, duck, quail, rabbit, and other wild animals are perfect proteins for your kitchen carnivore. These animals eat a natural diet and will generally have a superior nutrient profile. Plus, they’re likely grain, antibiotic, and hormone-free!

Are you a recreational hunter, or do you know someone that is?

6. Hunters

And you’ll be getting all of this for FREE.

If you don’t have the heart or stomach to kill and butcher your  meat (and I don’t blame you), maybe you have friends that hunt. 

If so, ask if they’d be willing to share. 

Or, you could  spot them a few bucks to put some meat aside for you. The only caveat here is it’s illegal to sell game meat. Gray areas include gifting and bartering. So you could offer to clean your buddy’s garage in exchange for meat instead. Get creative!

Either way you slice it, hunting will almost always be cheaper than buying meat from a store.

The internet is packed with online butchers, meat markets, meat subscription boxes, and online meat delivery services.

Just Google, and you shall find. The options, indeed, are endless.

Granted , these are geared toward human customers. So this option will most likely be more costly than anything else on this list, but it’s worth looking into. You may find a great specialty online shop with decent prices and a better selection than your local grocery store.


7. Online Meat Shops & Markets 

These online raw feeding stores carry high-quality, human-grade meat catered to raw feeders and dog owners. Since these stores target raw feeders, they often have products most traditional grocery stores do not. This includes a wide range of protein sources, exotic and wild meats, and various pieces and parts, including muscle meat, edible bone (or raw meaty bones), organs and glands.

Believe it or not, there are actually dog-specific online meat suppliers.

8. Online Meat Suppliers Specifically for Raw Feeders

© Raw Feeding Miami

Some of my favorites include:

For a more complete list of raw dog food suppliers, check out my raw dog food brand guide below:

take me to the brand guide

If you have a favorite raw dog food brand or company, see if they offer the option to buy directly through them. 

Many brands today have online ordering, subscription services and offer raw dog food delivered to your door.

For a list of the best raw dog food brands and companies, visit our brand guide below.

9. Buy Directly From Your Favorite Raw Dog Food Brands

visit the brand guide now

A cooperative, or co-op for short, is an association or group of people cooperating for mutual benefit.

Unsurprisingly, there are many raw feeding co-ops across the country where members are committed to optimal nutrition for their four-legged companions. 

These groups are for individuals interested in participating in efforts to source the best meat products for their dogs, taking quality and price into consideration. Raw feeding co-ops tend to network, source suppliers, pool purchasing power to buy in bulk at discount prices, and coordinate orders, deliveries, and food pickups among members.

I recommend joining these groups to connect with other raw feeders, slash prices, and make meat sourcing and preparation a fun social activity.

Regarding the best place where you can buy raw dog food, raw feeding co-ops take the cake. They are the MOST cost-effective sourcing option.

Find complete list of raw feeding co-ops in the US here. If can’t find a co-op near you, consider looking for online forums, groups, and Facebook groups in your area (listed in our raw feeding resources page). Once you’ve joined, ask members where they source their raw meat from. 

Raw feeders are a friendly bunch and will be happy to help!

10. Raw Feeding Co-ops & Buying Groups

11. Contact a Butchering Facility Directly

In the meat industry, a slaughterhouse (what I'm politely calling a butchering facility) is where livestock animals are slaughtered to provide food for people.  Slaughterhouses are also known as an abattoir.

Most livestock producers don't actually slaughter their animals themselves. Their livestock is sent to a facility that handles this, hopefully humanely and per state and federal regulations.

Some savvy raw feeders have been able to source raw products for their dogs by contacting slaughterhouses and other butchering facilities directly.

Just make sure the facility is USDA-approved, and it slaughters animals for human consumption.

If you want to go this route, check out the resources below to find a meat processing facility near you

There's no shortage of clever and thrifty ways to get your hand on raw meat for your raw-fed dog.

Consider thinking outside the box regarding online postings and lists to find free food items before they're discarded. Here are some examples:

People often clean their freezers and find old meat they choose to avoid eating. Or, you may find someone with a dog who passed away and is looking to donate frozen meat or raw pet food they no longer need.

You can find freezer dumps by creating ads and posts in raw feeding Facebook groups and forums (listed on our raw feeding resources page) or with your local co-op. Whenever I have raw food I wish to give away, I always post it in my local co-op's Facebook group first.  Creative raw feeders also post on Craigslist and/or Facebook Marketplace to find people cleaning out their freezers.

Sounds too good to be true? You'd be surprised how many people don't want to throw away good food and would be happy to give it to you for your dog. If you need help with what to say in your post, see these examples of Craigslist ads for raw feeders.

Every year, in every state, vehicles on the road hit hundreds of animals. Usually, law enforcement is called to the scene.

Some states have special lists where you can put your name in the event of a roadkill accident. If you get a call, you confirm if you can come and retrieve it. If you can't retrieve the animal, you can pass, in which case the next person on the list is contacted.

This is especially popular in Alaska, where a road kill list is used for moose, and other wild game gets hit.

Obviously, this option is only for those that can stomach it, but if you can pick up and process large game animals, it could mean a lot of free meat for your dog.

12. Source Free Meat With Online Postings & Lists 

1. Freezer Dumps


Where do you buy raw dog food?

Share any of your favorite stores, co-ops, or other uniques sourcing ideas that may be helpful for other raw feeders by sending me a message below. I’d love to hear your input!

Your Turn to Share

Still have questions on where to buy raw dog food?  Have a source you want to share? Let me know!

Thank you for your feedback!