Canned dog foods are often over-processed with fillers, additives and mystery meats that offer your dog little in the way of nutrition or taste. Nutritionally balanced homemade dog food, prepared in a slow cooker using fresh ingredients, can be a wholesome, rewarding way to feed your dog.
Correct Nutritional Balance
Before you endeavor to prepare homemade slow-cooked meals for your dog, consider consulting with your veterinarian or an animal nutritionist first. Then find recipes that will best suit her energy level, body weight, age and health requirements. Getting the correct balance of proteins, vegetables and carbohydrates is important your dogs nutritional health. A good meal normally contains 40 percent proteins, 30 percent vegetable content and 30 percent carbohydrates.
Protein sources for your homemade, slow-cooked dog food could include skinless chicken, ground beef, ground turkey, salmon, lamb chops and pork loin and small amounts of chicken or beef liver. Be careful to remove chicken and fish bones after cooking to avoid the possibility of choking.
Many dogs enjoy vegetables like zucchini, celery, collard greens, spinach, carrots, or green beans, especially when they absorb the tastes of their favorite meats while cooking. Frozen mixed vegetables can be a good choice, too.
Too many carbohydrates are a serious issue in many manufactured dog foods, but some grains are necessary, contributing fiber and nutrients to your dog's diet. Pasta, oatmeal, rice, barley and sweet potatoes are great carbohydrates to include in your slow-cooked dog food.
Start Slow Cooking
Put the ingredients in the slow cooker, and slowly cook the meat, vegetables and grains together. Follow recipes to determine correct amount of cooking time (10 to 12 hours is sufficient for most slow-cooked dog recipes). Any excess food can be stored in plastic containers and kept in the fridge, or poured into muffin tins and frozen for individual "dog muffins" for future use.