I changed my mind about waiting/keeping the level 4 meat until nothing else was left. I decided that, in the unlikely but possible event that it would slowly continue to spoil in the freezer, that it should be consumed first. Besides, it probably was not fair to my friend to have less than perfect meat in her freezer.
The digestive system of dogs is somewhat different from humans. Dogs also have an immune system that is generally more robust than humans. This is probably initially accomplished through a much stronger innate immune response. Since dogs apparently have the same number of kinds of toll-like receptors as humans (12), it seems that the diversity of the innate response to antigens is not what is the modulating factor in immune system differences. Whatever the case, empirically, dogs are more able to fight off both food-borne pathogens, and bacterial infections from open wounds, so there is a quality of meat that I might feed my dog, that I would not eat myself. Level 4 was it for me.
The dogs enjoyed the cooked meat. No one got sick, and they, in fact, perked right up with play activity a little after I fed it to them – running around, picking up toys, doing tricks. It was almost like they became smarter. At the same time, I have to be careful with possible kidney problems. They should not consume too much protein. It could be a burden on their kidneys.
I processed the meat just in time I think. I went to extract the brain from the skull the next day to use it to tan the hide, and it was gone – already consumed by maggots. Scraping all the meat off of the hide likewise involved a significant tolerance to maggots. I used a big knife, but didn’t sharpen it.
At this point, I want to salt it (in sea water maybe?). I still think I can get some gloves, 1 or 2 leashes and/or collars, and maybe a belt and/or wallet out of it. I’m not real sure though. It may just turn out to be rawhide.
Otherwise, I put some onions ends in the garden.
I don’t know if that will work. I might try with some green onions, inside, since it is getting quite cold. In the garden, there seem to be 3-4 carrots that have started, the cabbage looks quite good.
Everything else seems to be having more problems (with bugs?).
The little cucumbers and winter squash look great,
the baby cauliflower and tomatoes are doing alright,
as well as my one bean plant,
but I will have to figure out how to keep them warm during the winter.
Three of the lettuce look pretty good.
I might put some more russet potatoes down if they chit (I have a 5 lb bag in the car). The white potatoes are already in the ground.
Update: I found this article, which although I find somewhat biased against kibble, offers some insight into why dogs might better fight off intestinal problems. I sometimes feed kibble. It does tend to produce very consistent types of stool. The dogs do get bored with it, however. Not all bacteria are pathogenic. A normal intestine will have a lining of “good” bacteria on it, that if disrupted by antibiotic, can allow more pathogenic bacteria to proliferate.
I had frozen the marinated and sauteed organ meat until I could find a blender. I finally did find one, and after blending, went ahead and baked the blended organ meat without any binder like egg in it in a bain-marie (a natural way of regulating temperature in an oven that does not have a functioning thermostat). Leaving the oven slightly open might also work (and provide some heat). The pate had quite a gamey smell to it, and by the time it had cooked, there was no alcohol left of the beer that I had used to marinate it. The dogs tried it, and liked it much better than canned dog food. They thought it was delicious, even licking their bowls after eating it. Initially, with a small sample, there was no problem, but I fed them a larger sample mixed with a few other things after a long walk, and their stool became looser. It has largely resolved by now. I don’t think I will feed the rest of it to them, largely because I think it is high in cholesterol and fat, and this might not be great for Petey. My friend has lots of different animals, and I think we can probably find one that would benefit more from it – like cats. There are a couple of pounds of it.