Making homemade dog food allows you to reduce preservatives and cater to any allergies your dog may have. As dogs thrive on protein, a balanced homemade diet should include fresh-cooked meats. This doesn't mean you need to be a top chef. Simple recipes allow you to create a balanced meal.
Different Meats and Common Allergies
When it comes to fresh meats for your dog, your options are endless. Some options include beef, chicken, turkey, lamb, rabbit, duck, pork or fish. Additional protein options include eggs, cheese and dairy products. While most dogs tolerate proteins well, common allergies can occur with beef, chicken, lamb, pork, rabbit, fish, eggs and dairy. If your dog has allergies, make sure you avoid these foods in your homemade diet.
Moist Food Recipe
For an easy homemade recipe option, pull out your slow cooker. Pour in 2 cups of water or beef or chicken broth. Add 1 cup of brown or white rice. Include cut pieces of vegetables such as sweet potatoes or carrots. Add some green beans. Add 1 pound of cut up or ground meat of any variety. Cook on low for eight hours or high for five hours. Serve warm. Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Freeze for up to six months. Allow frozen portions to thaw or warm them up before serving.
Dry Food Recipe
Making a crunchy dog kibble with fresh meat requires a few more ingredients but is not much different from making a cake or batch of cookies. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine 3 cups of flour and 1 cup of dry milk powder. Set aside. In a small bowl, whisk two eggs with 1/2 cup vegetable oil and 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce. Add 1 1/2 cups beef or chicken broth. Pour the wet mixture into the flour bowl and combine well. Add 1 cup finely chopped vegetables, such as carrots. Stir in 2 cups of cooked ground meat. This can be beef, chicken or whatever other meat your dog enjoys. Spread the mixture onto a lightly greased baking sheet and cook for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and cool. Break into bite-sized pieces. Store in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to three days. Freeze for up to six months. Allow frozen kibble to thaw for 30 minutes before serving.
Talk to your veterinarian or a canine nutritionist before changing your dog’s diet. Let them know what you are planning to make. If extra nutrients are needs, they can help you adjust your meals or recommend additional supplements. Avoid adding extra seasonings such as salt, garlic and onions as these are not good for dogs.
Deborah Lundin is a professional writer with more than 20 years of experience in the medical field and as a small business owner. She studied medical science and sociology at Northern Illinois University. Her passions and interests include fitness, health, healthy eating, children and pets.