The Ins and Outs of Wholesome Homemade Dog Food

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person trying homemade dog food recipes with fresh ingredients

For many people, making a delicious meal for someone is a way to show them how much they mean to you. For pet owners who adore their four-legged friends, making homemade dog food could be a special way to treat their dogs!

Many Pet Parents Swear by Homemade Food for Dogs!

Why do pet owners love feeding their pooches homemade food for dogs? Well, for a start the ingredients used will be fresher. During processing, a considerable amount of the nutritional value is lost from some foods. Especially for some of your more volatile vitamins.

There are hundreds, nay thousands of different dry dog food diets available out there. Diets for all shapes, weights, ages, and types of canine. However, when feeding your dog homemade meals, you can tailor the recipes to suit your individual doggo.

Are Homemade Dog Food Recipes Vet Approved?

As with any dog diet decision, you should most certainly consult your dog’s veterinarian. Your vet can give you advice and guidelines about which recipes to use for your homemade cooked dog food.

An overwhelming majority of vets do not feed their pets homemade food. In fact, most vets choose to feed their dogs commercially prepared foods.

Some of the Healthiest Dog Food is Natural Dog Food

Natural dog food has the benefit of being preservative-free. Likewise, it is free of artificial colors and artificial flavors. Natural dog food ingredients are also likely to contain higher percentages of healthy vitamins and minerals.

How to Make Homemade Dog Food: Balance is Key

The important thing to remember when making beef stew for your dogs is that the meals should be balanced. This is not to say that each meal must contain all the required nutrients. As with humans, dogs can consume the nutrients that their bodies need to stay strong and healthy over a period of a couple of days or a week.

cat and dog eating nutritionally complete homemade dog food

Nutritionally Complete Dog Food is a Must

It is of the utmost importance that your canine’s diet is complete and balanced. For a dog’s diet to be nutritionally complete, it should contain some of each of the following ingredients:

  • Protein is super important for the growth and maintenance of cells, organs, enzymes, and hormones. Examples of healthful proteins that you can include in your dog’s homemade diet: Chicken, turkey, beef, lamb, fish, and cooked eggs.
  • Fat facilitates the absorption of some important nutrients. For example, vitamins A, D, E, and K. Mammalian bodies need fat for protecting and insulating internal organs. In addition, essential fatty acids are important for healthy skin and shiny coats. There is animal fat present in animal meat. And, healthy fats can be consumed in the form of plant oils such as olive oil and coconut oil.
  • Carbohydrates include food items such as rice, corn, wheat, and beans. There is some debate about whether dogs should be eating grains at all. For instance, some dogs develop allergies and skin sensitivities when eating commercially prepared grain-rich diets. However, grains in small doses are good for keeping intestines healthy. Moreover, carbohydrates quickly metabolize into glucose. Glucose is critical for the functioning of organs such as the brain.
  • Minerals that should be incorporated in a dog’s diet include calcium, potassium, iron, zinc, magnesium, and sodium. Among several important functions, these minerals serve to form strong bones and teeth.
  • The alphabet of vitamins that your doggo should be eating includes vitamins A, B, C, D, E, and K. These are important for body weight regulation, immunity, skin and eye health.

What to Look for in the Best Homemade Dog Food Recipe 

What is the most important thing to consider when mixing homemade food for dogs? Balance. The correct mix of protein:fats:carbohydrates. This ratio will be different for each dog. The amount and type of nutrients a dog needs will depend on size, weight, age, and activity levels.

Are the Homemade Dog Food Recipes Grain Free?

Does your hound have a food allergy or a sensitivity towards grains? You might want to steer clear of grains when preparing your homemade food for dogs. The nice thing about mixing your own dog food is that you can pick and choose the ingredients that you want to include in Fido’s diet.

Just remember to keep everything in balance. Carbohydrates should make up a small portion of your dog’s diet. If you want to keep away from grains, then substitute with other carbs like sweet potato, frozen peas, or garbanzo beans.

pets with fresh ingredients for homemade dog food recipe

Are Raw Dog Food Recipes Nutritionally Balanced?

Scientifically formulated raw dog food recipes can form a nutritionally balanced diet. If you want to make homemade raw food for your pets, be sure to find a recipe that is complete and balanced. It is always a good idea to check in with your vet about what is best for your pet.

Are You Using Human Grade Dog Food Ingredients?

Our pets are part of our family. Why would we feed them less than human-grade quality foods? It does sometimes seem as though dogs have stomachs of steel. This is not the case. Dogs are just as susceptible to becoming ill from foodborne pathogens such as salmonella, listeriosis, and E. coli.

Is it Just Food for Dogs or Cats as Well?

You can most certainly make homemade meals for your feline friends too. Just bear in mind that cats and dogs have different nutritional needs. You will not be able to use the same recipes for your homemade dog food as for your homemade cat food.

Is DIY Dog Food the Best Dog Food for Puppies?

Puppies are more prone to problems resulting from nutritional deficiencies and excesses. Young, growing dogs need nutrients in different amounts to adult dogs. Puppies need lots of energy from their food. On the other hand, eating too many calcium-rich foods can put them at risk. Once again, the key to homemade dog food diets is balance!

Are Carrots Good for Dogs? Can Dogs Eat Spinach? 

Yes, dogs can eat carrots! Moreover, carrots are good for dogs. Carrots contain beta-carotene. This vitamin is beneficial to both humans and their hounds.

And spinach? There are two sides to the argument for spinach for dogs. Spinach contains good amounts of vitamins A, B, C, and K. It is also a great source of plant-based iron. However, spinach is also very high in oxalic acid. This compound can block the body’s ability to absorb calcium. Consequently, it can lead to kidney damage.

Some foods that are absolute no-no’s for dogs: chocolate, grapes, and macadamia nuts.

person showing how to make homemade dog food

The Best Cheap Homemade Dog Food Ingredients

Buying large quantities of lean, human-grade meats for your pup can get quite pricey. You want to be sure that your dog is getting the correct ratio of proteins in their diet. But, if you want to bulk up their meals, here is a list of budget-friendly ingredients to incorporate in your homemade dog food recipes:

  • Bread, pasta, and grains such as wheat, corn, barley, and oats.
  • Coconut
  • Dairy products such as cheese and yogurt.
  • Eggs
  • Fruit such as apples, avocados, bananas, blueberries, and watermelon.
  • Dog-friendly vegetables include green beans, carrots, pumpkin, and sweet potatoes.

The Best Food for Dogs is Nutritionally Balanced and Wholesome!

Have you decided that want to try your hand at making your own dog food? Once you have decided on a couple of recipes, be sure to run it by your veterinarian. You want to be sure to include all the necessary nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. All the right ingredients in the right quantities!

Common Questions About Homemade Dog Food

Is it safe to feed your dog homemade dog food?

What kind of ingredients can I use to make homemade dog food?

Is homemade dog food better than kibble?

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