Monday, April 18, 2011
Homemade Dog Food
Little Miss MoneyPenny has the beginnings of cataracts which is the milky look to her eyes. I'm aware of it and she has been checked by animal eye specialist and is under vet care.
I am not a Vet or an expert on dogs or dog food. This post is just to get you thinking if you want to make your dog's food. I encourage you to do Google searches on dog food to find the things that are "poisonous to dogs" (for your own information), "raw dog food", "raw diet", "homemade dog food", etc. Do your research, don't just take my word for it! I do not take responsibility for what you feed your dog. I'm only making suggestions for your consideration.
I feed my dogs a good quality dog food but there have been times and situations where I have made my own dog food. So I'm telling you the things that I put in my homemade dog food.
I try to include all the basic food groups. I put it in my Vitamix mixer to slush it up. This is not necessary unless your dog has lost all his teeth and need a virtually liquid diet.
For meat and protein I buy canned salmon, canned tuna, canned chicken. Remember, dogs are meat eaters by nature. You can also buy some organ meat like beef or chicken liver/chicken gizzards. Ground turkey is good. Lean hamburger is good. Boneless fish fillets (unbreaded and cooked or uncooked). Beef hot dogs are good. Pork, ham, fatty pieces or pieces with bones are not good. Pork, sausage, ham, fatty pieces can give your dog pancreatitis which can be serious. You have to know what bones are OK for your dog. If you don't know, don't feed anything with bones.
You can use leftover egg shells but make sure they are ground up into powder because bigger pieces of shell could cut the intestines. But powdered egg shells are sources of calcium. If your dog has had problems with kidney or bladder stones, don't add anything for calcium!
Raw or cooked eggs are good sources of protein.
Plain yogurt is good for their digestive system just like it's good for our digestive system. It's also good for calcium. Cottage cheese is good for calcium.
Fruits like low sugar canned peaches, chopped or ground apples (or low sugar apple sauce) are good for their fruit group. Dried cranberries are good for kidneys and bladder. You could substitute, or add, apple juice and/or a little cranberry juice for their fruits.
Canned Vegetables like green beans, carrots and peas meet their vegetable food group. I throw them in the blender juice and all. Raw fingerling carrots are great too.
If your dog can tolerate grains (some have allergies to grains like people do) then raw oatmeal or cooked rice is good for their starches. Raw oatmeal is suppose to be good for their coat and cooked rice is easy on their digestive system. In fact if your dog has diarhhea make sure they are hydrated (even if you have to inject water or Pedialyte in their mouth with a syringe), give them a tsp of Kaopectate and some rice cooked with chicken broth.
Throw in some flaxseed, barley or bran for fiber.
Toss in some Vitamin E oil.
Change up their food so it's not always the same. For instance use canned salmon one time and use canned chicken in the next batch. Use green beans in one batch and canned carrots in the next batch.
You don't want to add sugary stuff to their diet. The sugar clings to their teeth and can add empty calories which can increase their weight. Now, Spunky has never had anything sweet in his whole little life but he still lost most of his teeth. So sugar isn't the only thing that can affect the teeth. But sugar with dogs is like sugar with kids, they develop a desire for the sweet taste and will eschew the good food for the sweet junk food. It can also make them hyper and can ruin their teeth. So don't develop the habit by giving them sugary treats. If you start them off right, they are perfectly happy with a raw carrot or a slice of apple or a handful of dried cranberries for a treat.
Keep it in a covered dish in the refrigerator. They usually need less of this because it is so good for them and they may have less waste. Make sure you keep an eye on their weight so they aren't gaining too much or losing too much. Adjust accordingly. Keep an eye on their waste. If it is too loose or their urine is looking like there are bits of sand in it, then go to the Vet. If there is blood in the urine, it will be pink tinged or even drops of blood, go to the Vet. If the stool is bloody, mucousy or fibrous, go to the Vet. Tell the Vet what they are eating. Also, their coats should be shiny and in good shape. Keeping an eye on their coats is a way for us to know if their diet is healthy for them. If they are having problems with their fur and skin, check with your Vet and look at their diet. It could be something like their thyroid which needs Vet attention or it could be a bad diet or something they are allergic to in their diet.
I hope this gets you thinking. Don't feed them human leftovers that have sugary, fatty, spiced up food. Anything cooked with onions will upset their stomach. Same with garlic. Bones can shred their intestines. KNOW WHAT IS POISONOUS to dogs because what you eat with no problem could kill them!
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