Hi guys! Are you in love with your dogs just as much as I am with mine? Well, if you are then you need to come on over to our side and tell us just how you are taking pretty good care of your young pups. Why don’t you come on over and tell us a little bit about your homemade dog food ideas, because to be quite honest with you, it seems as though some of us, or many of us, actually, just don’t seem to have much of a clue.
Let me explain why I say this is the case. The thing is this; too many folks are just so tempted to take the easy way out in life. When old Fido has this hungry look in his eyes and his drawling lips start to drip then you know he’s got the hunger pangs. So what do you all do? You nip off to the grocer store and go and buy him his favorite biscuits or canned goodies. And after you’ve fed him the goods, have you noticed just how quickly he gobbles it all down.
Most folks seem to have this perception, I was one of them that dogs are just dogs, they have no clue about eating etiquette, they just want to finish their grub as quickly as possible, never getting to really taste the goods, and head off for their evening nap or play with their meaty pals. Have you ever wondered that maybe, just maybe, the poor old boy was just so hungry but couldn’t stand the taste of the food and just thought he’d gobble the lot down as quickly as possible to make his meal at least bearable.
I can guarantee you that if dogs could; they’d be nipping off to their local butcher and buying some of their favorite meat cuts for dogs, except of course the fact that the protein enriched fresh meat that has been their favorites has been confined to their dreams. Perhaps that’s why the lads tend to sleep all day, they’re dreaming about going to the steak ranch or some such. By preparing homemade food for your dogs; you’re actually doing both yourself and Fido a huge favor.
Not only are you providing dogs with far healthier meal options, you’ll also be spending a lot less on dog food. That’s another perception to get out of the way. Folks still seem to think that dogs are quite greedy. They’re not. Food portions, go natural please, and ditch the biscuits and tins too please, don’t and shouldn’t be large. Dogs are also fed in proportion to their actual size. And, of course, natural, homemade food is a lot healthier for dogs because it is free of all the processed byproducts that any vet worth his salt will tell you will, over time, ruin the linings of the dog’s stomach.
To close off, here’s a few meaty ideas to start you off with. It does not have to be gourmet meals, for goodness’s sake. Cook good, wholesome meals just like you would for the rest of your family. Don’t need to believe that dogs, like cats, are inherently fussy creatures, but do treat them with the variety that they deserve. Feed them beef, chicken and even a little fish. The fresh produce is highly enriched in protein and essential omega 3 fatty acids.
Get your paws on a little turkey too. And don’t for a moment think that doggie doesn’t like his veggies. Because he does.
I know it sounds weird, giving your dog a party, but you would be surprised at how many people really do give their dogs parties. All you need are a few other friends who love dogs and have their own and you can have a lot of fun not just making the stuff for the party but by letting the dogs get together for an afternoon of dog treats and fun.
Things You Can Make For Your Doggy Party
What’s a party without a cake? So why not whip up a special dog cake for your furry friends?
Here’s a recipe your dog and his friends are sure to enjoy.
Sweet Potato Cake
- 1 ½ C sweet potatoes or yams cooked
- 1 teaspoon of baking soda or you can use 3 teaspoons of baking powder
- 1/3 C of oil (use almond, canola or coconut)
- 3 tablespoons of peanut butter
- 2 tablespoons of flax seed meal
- 1 C of whole wheat flour
- 2 tablespoons of honey
- An egg
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- Make sure to preheat oven to 350° F.
- Sift the baking soda/powder with the flour and then mix in the rest of the ingredients.
- Take an 8” pie pan and grease it and then put the cake batter in it.
- Bake your doggy cake for around 20 minutes and then turn off your oven and let the cake sit in the oven for another 15 minutes.
- Remove and let it cool.
Doggy Cake Icing
- Low fat cream cheese (8 oz pkg)
- Carrot finely grated
- Parsley or celery leaves
Take the cream cheese and spread it on the cooled off cake and then sprinkle grated carrots and parsley or celery leaves on top.
Every party needs more than just cake so make sure to have a variety of party appetizers.
For the base of your appetizers you can use cheese slices and whole grain crackers as well as celery sticks. Then you can add things like chopped veggies and fruits, canned fish like tuna, chopped nuts and peanut butter.
Design Your Party Around a Theme
Any party that is designed around a theme is going to be really fun and entertaining. Even for a dog party. You ask those who are invited to dress their dogs up in whatever theme you’ve decided upon and then leave it up to the dog parents to come up with something that fits the theme. Here are a few theme ideas you might consider trying:
- Beach Theme – This can include bathing suits, umbrellas, sunglasses and even wading pools for the dogs.
- Astronomy Theme – Here you can include asteroids, moons, stars, comets, and planets.
- Country Time Theme – This might include different farm animals, straw hats, overalls and so on.
- Hawaiian Theme – Have a little doggy luau complete with crepe flowers, flowered dog shirts, raffia skirts, leis and so on.
- Holiday Theme – Depending upon the year it could be to celebrate anything from the Chinese New Year to Mardi Gras.
- Pirate Theme – This is always a favorite with bandanas, eye patches, skull and crossbones, golden earrings and pirates treasure.
If you really want to get into it you can even do more.
You can create customized invitations for your doggy party that you make by hand and even sign it with a paw print to represent your dogs signature.
If you are having a themed party you can always go out and buy napkins, plates, cups and tablecloths that match the overall theme of the party.
Make goody bags for your guests that are made from little paper bags you can buy at any Dollar Store in your area and you can decorate them with ribbon or colored paper and then fill them with party favors especially for dogs like little toys or homemade dog treats.
Be creative and have fun with it, your dog will definitely enjoy it, you should too!
If you are thinking about making your own dog food, you probably have several questions about doing so. I hope I can answer those questions for you in this blog post about homemade dog food. You know, making your own dog food actually gives you a chance to give your dog good nutrition often better than a lot of the commercial dog foods, so that in itself is a plus.
The most common question is if it costs more money to make your own dog food? Well, sometimes it can be, it depends on you. However, that’s not always the case. Depending on what you get, you can save money by making your own dog food. It really depends on the size of your dog and if you can buy in bulk or not.
Another common concern is the time it will take to make your homemade dog food. If you cook often then you probably won’t even notice how much time it takes, which should only be a couple of minutes any way. If you don’t have good cooking skills but still want to do this, I just suggest that you have patience and don’t give up. Eventually you’ll be making dog food like a pro. Once you find a good recipe for your dog, you may want to make up bigger batches that last for a week and then during the week it’s just a matter of serving the dog food to your dog.
Should it Be Raw, Cooked or a Combo of Both?
That seems to be in debate with many people and as far as I’m concerned it’s a personal preference of your own and your dog. I myself usually feed my little guy cooked because he just thinks raw food is yucky. But I will leave the decision up to you.
Raw Diet Option
Some dog parents think this diet offers the best nutritional value because the food is not processed and resembles the kind of diet dogs ate over the centuries of their existence. Their digestive tracts are still well designed for raw food that is meat based, so I see nothing wrong with it myself, except like I said before my dog seems to think that raw food is yucky, and quite frankly I find it hard to disagree with him.
In the past and in the wild, dogs would get their own raw foods by killing their own meals and then would benefit from the veggies found in their prey as well as surrounding plant life. But, our dogs don’t live in the wild so how are you suppose to duplicate something like that?
You can make your own raw dog food by just combining whatever meat you desire and combine it with veggies like carrots, beans and celery and egg, in a blender or food processor. Of course you will have to experiment for a time until you find the right ratios that work best so it can be made into loaves or patties. You can freeze these and then take them out for use at any time.
The Benefits of Home Cooked Food for Your Dog
There are several different benefits that your dog can gain from eating food that you cook just for them.
- Since you have more control over the ingredients, they will benefit from getting more nutrition from their food.
- Foods like tomatoes and carrots actually are better for you when cooked because cooking releases even more nutrients.
- For some reason dogs tend to really enjoy home cooked food by their pet parent because it makes them feel special. My little boy gets so excited when he smells his food cooking he’s always dancing in circles and panting with excitement. Something he never did when I just opened up a can of dog food for him.
- It gives you the ability to experiment with different kinds of recipes to see what your dog loves most and to give variety to his diet. Dogs get bored too.
- You can actually make meals that you two can eat together.
Before creating your special meals for your dog, you need to realize that there are some human foods and beverages that dogs must avoid at all cost.
- Alcohol (can cause death even in small amounts)
- Artificial Sweetener
- Baking chocolate/cocoa powder (toxic dose is 1-4 ounces per 20 pounds of weight)
- Bread dough
- Coffee, regular tea and soda
- Cold cuts especially bologna (can cause diabetes and high blood pressure)
- Cooked bones (can cause intestinal punctures or blockages)
- Corn cobs/popcorn (can cause intestinal blockage)
- Raw eggs (higher risk of salmonella)
- Fried and high fatty foods (can cause pancreatitis if given often)
- Fruit pits and seeds (cyanide poisoning if large amounts ingested)
- Grapes and raisins (can cause kidney failure)
- Macadamia nuts (toxic dose 1 ounce per 20 lbs)
- Mushrooms (even smallest amount can cause seizures and death)
- Nutmeg (large amounts can cause seizures and death)
- Onion, Onion powder, garlic and chives (can cause hemolytic anemia)
- Pork products such as hot dogs and bacon (can cause acute pancreatitis or hemorraghic gastroenteritis)
- Spoiled or moldy food (any amount can be toxic)
Ways of Cooking for Your Dog
There are different ways to cook for your dog just like for us and some ways are better because they will maximize the nutrition that they get from the food. General rule of thumb is to avoid using really high heat for a long period of time. Also try to aim for a good nutritional balance. All dogs need far more protein and animal fats than we do so make sure they get plenty of that.
- One of the best ways is to steam the vegetables and use as little water as possible.
- Cook the vegetables with their peel on them.
- Add the rest of the cooking water from the vegetables to your dog’s food.
- Try to avoid canned vegetables and stick with fresh or frozen.
- Partly poach the eggs or put them in boiling water for about five minutes.
- Bring water to a boil then add your eggs and let them sit for about 15 minutes before serving.
- Cook all red meats in a non-stick frying pan until it just starts to lose the red color of the meat. The exception would be pork, this needs to be cooked all the way through to avoid trichinosis.
- When cooking chicken put it in some lightly seasoned water that has reached boiling and then just let it simmer for about an hour or until it is fully done. Don’t let it come to a boil again after the first time.
Here are a couple of recipes for some cooked dog food that you might want to try serving up for your furry family member.
1 pound of any kind of meat
1 finely chopped carrot
1 finely chopped small potato
1 celery stick chopped
½ C sliced green beans
1 tablespoon of steak sauce
Put all the ingredients in a big casserole dish that you can use in the microwave. Cover the ingredients with water and mix well. Put the dish in the microwave and cook on high setting for 10 minutes, then mix the ingredients again and microwave the casserole on medium this time for another 10 minutes.
Remove the casserole from your microwave and take the lid off and let it stand for at least one hour before serving it to your dog.
Nummy Nummy Treats
This is great if someone is a hunter in your family. What you use for these treats are the liver, kidneys, heart or whatever to make the treats. You can also find these things at your store as well. Anyway, take these items and cut them up into small pieces and then cook them in water on medium heat for about an hour. After that cool down the broth and the parts and then bag the pieces in small ziplock sandwich bags. Your dog will go crazy over these protein treats.
Don’t be afraid to play around with food ideas and remember as long as you don’t include any of the bad items on the list provided here, you actually can pretty much use any of your own human recipes to make delicious tasting homemade dog food for your dog.
Making your own dog treats isn’t as difficult as you might think. Actually it’s quite fun and your dog will love you for it. There are several different benefits from making your own treats for your dog that include the following:
- You get to control what goes into your dogs treats. This way you are ensuring that your best buddy is getting not only a good tasting treat but one that is wholesome and nutritious. You can also experiment with different ingredients until you find what your dog likes best.
- You can also make sure that the dog treats you make don’t have any unhealthy additives in them. A lot of commercial dog treats are crammed with preservatives, sure this helps to preserve their shelf life but is not always good for your dogs health. Also the treats you buy from the store often have a lot of different fillers along with unknown byproducts instead of natural and higher quality ingredients that you control.
- By making your own treats you are giving your dog a very tasty but healthier alternative to the treats he’s use to getting from the store.
Here are just a few recipes that are not just tasty and healthy but they are also very easy to make for your dog and your dog should love them.
Leftover Trail Mix
Just have to look in your fridge for this one. All you need to do is combine together any of the leftovers listed here to make your dog a good tasting trail mix.
- Pieces of leftover meat
- Veggies (no onions however)
- Fruits (no raisins or grapes)
- Take the ingredients and cut the pieces into ½ inch pieces.
- Take some cooking spray and spray the pieces lightly.
- Put the food in a dehydrator or bake them at 200° F in your oven until totally dried out.
Let cool and you are ready to go.
Frozen Peanut Butter & Yogurt Treats
Every dog love peanut butter so this is one that’s sure to make your dog a happy camper.
- Vanilla yogurt (32 ounces)
- Cup of peanut butter
- Put peanut butter in a bowl and melt in the microwave.
- Mix the peanut butter and yogurt together in the same bowl.
- Line cupcake pan with cupcake papers and pour the yogurt mixture into the cups.
- Put in the freezer and wait till they are frozen and then serve.
Traditional Doggie Biscuits
This is your basic dog biscuit recipe but it is one that you can customize to cater to what your dog likes best.
- 2 ½ C of whole wheat flour (use oat meal if your dog is sensitive to wheat products)
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- An egg
- 1 teaspoon of beef or chicken bouillon granules or broth
- ½ C of hot water
- Bacon bits, chicken broth, oats, eggs, wheat germ, liver powder, cheese that’s shredded
- Make sure oven is preheated to 350° F.
- If using bouillon dissolve it in hot water.
- Add the rest of the ingredients in a bowl.
- Mix and knead the dough until it can be formed into a ball (usually takes about 3 minutes).
- Take a rolling pin and roll the dough out to about ½ inch in thickness.
- Take cookie cutters and cut dough out into different fun shapes.
- Put the dog biscuits on a cookie sheet that has been lightly greased.
- Cook for 30 minutes, let cool and let your dog enjoy.
Healthy and Yummy Pumpkin Balls
These aren’t just tasty but they are crammed with lots of fiber, beta carotene, iron, potassium and vitamin A.
- Canned pumpkin (½ a cup)
- 4 tablespoons of molasses
- 4 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
- 2 C whole wheat flour
- ¼ teaspoon of baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon of baking powder
- 1 teaspoon of cinnamon (omit if your dog doesn’t like cinnamon)
- Make sure oven is preheated to 350° F.
- In a bowl mix together the pumpkin, veggie oil, molasses and water.
- Next add the flour, baking powder, baking soda and the cinnamon and stir just until the dough softens up.
- Take a spoon and scoop out small amounts of the mixture and roll it into a ball with your hands (it’s best to wet your hands first).
- Put the balls on a cookie sheet that’s lightly greased and then flatten a little with a fork.
- Bake around 25 minutes or until the dough is hard.
Well there you have it. A few simple recipes that will surely get your dogs tail wagging for more.