Just as good homemade food is a healthy and affordable option for humans, it is equally true of homemade food for your pet dog. As more and more dog owners stop buying commercially sold dog food on account of the harmful effects or poor nutrition quality, they are turning to preparing their pets' food right at home with fresh and good quality ingredients. It is easy, simple and very healthy and nutritious for your dog and easy on your wallet!!
What do healthy dogs need?
The average healthy diet for a dog should be a mix of 75% carbohydrates and 25% proteins from meat. Follow some of the suggestions listed below to have your dog eating and living healthy.
- Look before you leap - Check with your vet if it is okay to switch over to homemade food, and what kind and manner of cooked food is good for your dog.
- Meat ideas - Always cook meat before you feed it to your dog, various organ meats such as liver, kidneys, etc are extremely good for your dog as are eggs and ground eggshells mixed to the dog's food. Meats such as beef, chicken, tuna or lamb should be ground and cooked well.
- Simple meal - A simple and nutritious meal for your dog is a mixture of rice, ground or minced meat, vegetables, some brewer's yeast and adequate water, depending on whether you want dry or wet food. Vegetables should always be cooked and pureed as well, since dogs cannot digest raw vegetables.
- Carbohydrate sources - Rice, white or brown, pasta, whole wheat flour, soy or corn flour are good sources of carbohydrates for dogs. Any one of these staples should be a necessary ingredient in whatever meal you might cook for the dog.
- Add-ons - Small amounts of cod liver or flaxseed oil, a little bit of cooked garlic, bone meal or powdered milk are good additions to the meal to ensure the dog's calcium (bone meal or ground eggshells) requirement is met, coats become healthy and shiny (cod liver or flaxseed oil) and the dog builds resistance against infection and get rid of worms and fleas (garlic).
- Vegetables - Carrots, spinach and broccoli (small amount) which are cooked and pureed are good vegetables to use for your dog's food.
- Avoid!! Foods such as chocolates, tea, coffee, raisins, grapes, nutmeg, onions, raw eggs, nuts other than peanut are a strict no-no. They can cause all kinds of complications such as seizures, kidney failure, salmonella poisoning, blood circulation problems, tremors, etc. Also avoid moldy foods, fruit pits, yeasty dough, etc.
- Preservation and serving - Always serve your dog's food at normal room temperature, it should neither be too hot or too cold. Cooked food should not be kept in the refrigerator for longer than 2-3 days. Hence, when preparing a meal make sure you prepare just enough to make one or two servings only, and the food the dog eats is mostly freshly made.
You can also feed your dog's cookies or biscuits made especially for them, there are plenty of recipes to be found, both from online sources as well as specialty cookbooks you can find in bookstores. Vegetarians who do not use or touch meat can also find all-vegetarian recipes for their dogs which are equally healthy and nutritious. Raw bones are not only a great treat for your dogs but also healthy. With making dog food right at home, you are ensuring your beloved pet eats healthy and tasty food at all times!