Fall is coming and what better time to start thinking of family meals and wonderful stews. And by family, I mean humans and dogs! Nutritious, homemade meals are just as important for your dog as they are for you.
Reasons To Make Your Own Nutritious, Homemade Dog-food:
• Commercial dog food is not very well regulated and not supervised as well as human food
• Commercial dog food contains a lot of fillers such as corn and wheat products that are not very healthy
• Dog food recalls are common. Between 1/19/18 and 9/12/18 there were 26 recalls on dog foods
• Control your dog’s diet based on their health and activity level
• Fresh foods contain more vitamins and minerals.
Balancing Your Dogs Diet
Balancing your dog’s diet and making sure they get a full range of necessary nutrients is very important. Remember in the wild the wolf eats the whole animal – bones, organs, meat as well as stomach contents which would be vegetable matter. So you can’t just toss some skinless, boneless chicken breasts to your dog and consider yourself a good dog owner. In addition, your dog may have specific health needs you should address. Have a large breed or a senior citizen? Consider adding a Glucosamine supplement.
When making your own grain free food you want to shoot for 50% protein sources (meats, organs, and eggs), 25% starch (potatoes, squash and beans), 20% vegetables and 5% fruits. Just like when you cook for your human family it is desirable to have a variety of foods that are different colors and textures.
In addition, you will also need to add supplements such as calcium phosphorus. I add supplements just before I serve the meal to my dogs, not during the cooking process. The heat in the cooking process causes them to deteriorate.
Make Changes Slowly and Carefully
Remember that sudden changes in your dog’s diet are not good. Changes in diet should be made over several weeks to make sure they are getting adequate nutrition and to give their digestive system time to adjust to new foods.
Talk to your vet about changing your dog’s diet and ask for any recommendations that they have. A growing number of vets have special interests and training in nutrition and holistic medicine.
Chicken Stew is Good For You And Your Pup
This is a great recipe. It takes some time (mostly in the simmering) but not very much work. This recipe makes a great deal and is suitable for dogs and their humans. It is also easy to put in containers and freeze or refrigerate for later consumption.
Chicken Stew For Your Dog And You
- 1 large whole chicken free range if possible
- 1/4 pound chicken livers
- 2 cups chopped carrots 1 to 2 inch pieces
- 2 cups chopped sweet potatos 1 to 2 inch pieces
- 1 cup chopped apples 1 to 2 inch pieces
- 1 can rinsed kidney beans
- 1 cup canned frozen (or fresh) peas
- 1 tsp fresh oregano
- 1 tsp fresh thyme
- Place the chicken in a large pan with enough water to cover. Bring to a full boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer till meat is no longer pink and easy to pull off the bone.
- Remove chicken from water (don’t throw that water away! Save half for broth and use other half ) and let cool. When chicken is cool remove meat and skin from the skeleton. Cut meat into human size bites. Do not feed your dog bones from store purchased chicken.
- Put the meat back into the pan with about half the water. Add livers, vegetables and apples and spices. ( If the humans don’t like liver, they can be cooked separately).
- Let everything simmer together till vegetables are soft. About 30 minutes.