How to Cook your own Dog Food at Home
Trying out a more sustainable lifestyle for you and your dog? Whether you love Mother Earth, want to pamper your pup, or save a pretty penny, there’s a lot to be gained when you make your own dog food at home. Read our guide to home cooked dog food and take your pet care to the next level!
Benefits of Homemade Dog Food
- Quality assurance. Don’t believe everything a fancy label tells you. If we have come to learn that about products made for humans, then we should be equally cautious with the products meant for pet consumption. Tin cans and glass jars that will convince you that you are buying the best for your dog are not to be taken at face value – read the fine print and ingredients and you might be shocked with what you find or don’t find! Reports of salmonella and mycotoxin strains in dog food should cause dog owners to become more vigilant.
- Pet-friendliness. Dog food will come in many flavors, with many supplements and age ranges. There is hardly a one-size-fits-all food because each and every pet has their own dietary needs. Does your pup have a specific condition? Then you will be able to customize according to their needs once you start to make your own dog food at home. A diet low in grain has been shown to reduce symptoms of arthritis in affected dogs.
- Saving money. If you’re on a tight budget then you have probably opted for budget dog food that comes in huge amounts. While this can be practical for your wallet, it can post some health constraints on your dog without you knowing. Higher end prepared doggy-bites can come with a steep price tag, despite being better, health-wise for your pet. With a little extra effort, buying and cooking meals for your entire home can be synergized and help you make enough for your dog as well as yourself and your family.
A Balanced Doggy Diet
We know that a human and a canine’s dietary needs are different, but the concept of a balanced diet is all the same. Consider your dog’s age, activity level, and weight level when you are deciding what to make for them. Each meal ideally contains a meat or similar protein source, carbohydrates, and some vegetables on the side. Being aware of the following for your dog will help you make your own dog food at home.
- Vitamins & Minerals. Doses of vitamins and minerals are especially found in meats and vegetables. As long as you regularly serve those ingredients, you should be good to go.
- Calcium. This is a tricky area to address since dogs are naturally lactose intolerant. Plain yogurt is acceptable for dog consumption, and will help your pet’s bones grow strong.
- Protein. Protein is extremely important for active dogs. Eggs are a very healthy way of boosting your dog’s protein levels!
How to Cook your own Dog Food at Home
There are a multitude of recipes for dog food online, and you will find that it’s not much different from creating meals for humans. When you make your own dog food at home, make sure to keep their diet balanced. Depending on your available ingredients and needs, here are some guidelines for how to find the best doggy meals in the comfort of your own kitchen!
Canines are, as you can guess, natural carnivores. Meat will definitely go down well with your pup!
- Beef, pork, and poultry. Your dog probably won’t be picky as long as they sink their teeth into meaty goodness!
- Organs. Innards can be really packed with the essential supplements, such as iodine in liver. Be sure to serve organs up once in a while.
Fish are known to be a more feline culinary option, but its Omega-3 fatty acids will bolster your dog’s health and give their coat a lovely shine too.
Fruits, Vegetables, and Grains
The harvests of the earth make for good ingredients to add to your dog’s diet – choose organic options that minimize the chances of contamination when you make your own dog food at home.
- To keep up the active lifestyle, adding lots of good carbohydrates like potatoes or rice, to your dog’s meal will make sure they are healthy and full of energy.
- Leafy greens. Adding in leafy greens will bulk up your dog’s system against environment and old age – and was a natural meal when they were not yet domesticated.
Once you’ve put your desired ingredients all together, you can set up your kitchen. A simple way to make your dog food at home will be your saving grace in home dog care!
- Boil water in a pot.
- Chop up the ingredients and add to the pot.
- Allow to boil until the meats have been cooked, to get rid of possible bacteria or viruses.
- Allow to cool, and serve! Freeze any leftovers for future use.
Important Tips and Tricks
Now that your dog’s meals are made in the kitchen just like your breakfast, lunch, and dinner, adjustment may take some time and you could have a few new problems to encounter. Here are some tips to help you on your quest to make your own dog food.
- Find out which ingredients are huge no-no’s when you make your own dog food. Don’t even consider the following ingredients:
- Onions or garlic
- Dairy products (only plain yogurt is okay for dogs)
They are all dangerous to your dog’s health in large doses – so it’s better to play it safe and don’t include them in the doggy-meal shopping list at all.
- Introduce new kinds of foods to your dog’s diet gradually. It’s never a good idea to shock anyone’s body with foreign food. This is the same for your pet. During this time of transition, play it safe and make sure that you only add a little of that food to the mix, and if the response is favourable, continue to add more the next time you make your own dog food at home.
- If you’re on a tight budget or tight schedule, mix purchased dog food with home cooked food. If money or time proves to be a bit of a problem for you, then allow yourself to retain some packaged dog food in your home. For emergency purposes, you can bring out these foods when you are short on time.
- Pat yourself on the back for every meal you complete. Even if you might be a complete newbie in the kitchen, the moment your dog happily chows down your special meal, it’s a cause for celebration. Good job on taking the plunge to make your own dog food!
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