Home Cooked Diet Recipe for Dogs
Providing a fresh, home prepared diet for your pet is a natural way to reduce inflammation and help maintain proper health.
This recipe feeds a 50 lb dog for about one day; increase or decrease amount prepared according to your dog's size. Like humans, all dogs will have different metabolic rates. Weigh your dog before using this recipe then every 2-3 weeks until they are stable at a good weight.
9 ounces meat
1 ounce organ meat
6-7 ounces of steamed, grated vegetables
1 tsp of NOW brand Calcium Citrate Powder (provides 600mg calcium)
1 capsule of Nature's Way Kelp (provides 600mg kelp)
Give as directed on bottle according to body weight.
- Nordic Naturals Omega-3 Pet
Canine Plus Multivitamin (dogs up to 6 years old)
Canine Plus Senior Multivitamin (dogs over 6 years old)
Buy all the supplements you need for this recipe here:
- Lightly cook the meat and vegetables together by boiling, steaming, sauteing with a little water, or slow-cooking (i.e. "Crockpot").
- Once cooled, chop meat, organ meat, and vegetables in a food processor. Do not pulverize. Add water if needed.
- Add chopped meat and vegetables to a bowl, add Calcium and Kelp powders, and mix. Add water if needed.
- Add Omega-3 oil and a Multivitamin daily according to your dog's body weight (instruction on package.)
- Vary the type of meat and vegetables used to guard against food sensitivities or nutritional deficiencies arising from always using the same ingredients
- Be aware that raw meat poses a significant health risk to people; use caution when handling
- Use a variety of organs from the same or similar type of animal (i.e. okay to use chicken hearts, gizzard, or livers with turkey meat if turkey organs not readily available)
- Chopped meat is better to encourage chewing. If using ground meat, give at least some of the meat as chopped meat to improve dental health, if possible
- Lightly cooked meats have a higher nutrient content
- Vegetables are used to supply the right amount of carbohydrates and have a very high trace nutrient value. Any vegetable is okay: Carrots, broccoli, squash, yams, parsnips, spinach, kale, parsley, bok choy, lettuce, apples, and kelp. Grate, puree, and/or steam the vegetables to make them digestible
- Sweet potatoes, which have decent protein levels, are not too rich in starch and have several anti-cancer compounds. They make an excellent vegetable for home cooked diets
- Avoid carbohydrates, unless your pet has trouble gaining weight. Try to avoid wheat and grains, like corn and white rice
- Starch sources that may be marginally okay for some animals if they are not too inflamed include white potatoes and small amounts of oats or quinoa
- Avoid onions, grapes; minimize use of garlic
- Do not use an omega-3 supplement, except possibly at the lowest recommended dose, if your animal's coat is greasy or they are highly prone to severe inflammation.
- Pre-prepared frozen meat and vegetable diets, sold to be fed raw, can be instead lightly boiled or steamed and fed as a home-cooked diet. Do not dry cook raw food diets that contain bone fragments
- A raw "knuckle bone" or other rounded bone too big to swallow with cartilage covering is the safest to avoid broken teeth or choking while providing health benefits. It can be given every 1-3 days to help maintain dental, jaw, and emotional health. This should be thoroughly thawed if previously frozen. Do not allow pet to chew on it after it has been out of the fridge for more than about 45 minutes total time due to bacterial growth. In addition, after two hours out of the refrigerator, these bones can become hard enough to crack teeth (they become harder as they dry). Never feed cooked bones or bones that can be choked on. Avoid marrow bones, frozen bones or dried out bones (these commonly cause cracked teeth). Soft bones that are meant to be consumed as part of the diet can be given with certain considerations. If you are already or would like to feed raw meaty bones, discuss what type of bones are best for your pet with your practitioner.
- This diet can be fed using raw ingredients. It has been shown that dogs eating a raw diet have higher amounts of potentially pathogenic bacteria (salmonella, clostridium, etc.) on their fur than dogs eating a cooked diet. For this reason, raw meat diets are NOT recommended for dogs that come in contact with immuno-compromised individuals, children, or other susceptible individuals. For most individuals, the strongest benefit comes from feeding a whole food diet (unprocessed). Cooking does not generally reduce the improvements seen with a home-prepared diet. Certain constitutions and elderly pets generally do better with a cooked diet and will tend to experience diarrhea on raw diets. For more guidance regarding cooked vs. raw diets, or for help with transitioning to a new diet, schedule a phone consultation with our doctor.
- Warm the food to make it more aromatic
- Put the new food on the old food so the new food has to be eaten to get to the old food
- Sprinkle a small amount of nutritional yeast on top