Treat Your Dog To One Of These Healthy, Homemade Snacks
Hello again, everyone! Happy Friday! I have had numerous e-mails come in asking me to publish an article containing more recipes for your dog. This week, I am doing just that. I have compiled a few of my favorite recipes just for you.
If you haven’t seen my prior article about commercial diets, you might be asking ‘why should I consider feeding a home-based diet?’ That’s a great question! Research has found commercial dog food can be detrimental to your dog’s health. While working in the canine cancer field, I was introduced to Rodney Habib. Please look him up, and search for sugars in the commercial diet. You will be mind-blown if you haven’t seen this yet.
Before I continue, ensure your veterinarian is on-board with this. Every dog is different. And, those with medical conditions may require a different diet than others. And, don’t forget to feed your dog a multivitamin, like EverPup, if you feed a home-based diet.
HOW CAN A HOMEMADE
DIET HELP MY DOG?
Homemade dog food can significantly help a dog who suffers from allergies, gastrointestinal issue, and/or skin problems.
In addition to improving your dog’s diet, you can feel at ease knowing you have complete control of what your dog is eating. Do we really know what’s in that bag from the grocery store? No, not really. We can take a look at the ingredients list … but what is ‘hidden’ from us as the consumer?
If you cook your dog’s food in large quantities, you can also save money by feeding a homemade dog food. Most people are worried about the cost of the diet–but most of the ingredients your dog eats, we eat, too. After all, they are omnivores… they eat plants and animals similar to us.
There are some ingredients you can’t add to your dog’s food. We’ll get to those in a minute.
LOW CALORIE DOG
Homemade dog food is generally better for dogs than their kibble or canned dog food from the store. Because there aren’t any preservatives or additives, homemade dog food is also lower in calories. As with everything though, food should be given in moderation (and never any more than 10 percent scraps/treats).
So, let’s get started with the recipes!
DOGGIE BEEF STEW: THE ALTERNATIVE TO CANNED DOG FOOD
Beef stew is a great dinner to feed our dogs … why? Because it naturally contains both meat and veggies. And, our dogs will happily eat the veggies found in the stew.
1 pound of beef stew meat
1 small sweet potato
1/2 cup of carrots, diced
1/2 cup of green beans, diced
1/2 cup of flour
1/2 cup of water or organic vegetable oil, plus 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil for frying
Total: Makes approx 4 cups (or 32 fluid ounces)
Cook the sweet potato in a microwave for 5 to 8 minutes until firm but tender. Set aside.
Slice the stew pieces into smaller chunks, about the size of a nickel.
Cook the stew pieces in a tablespoon of vegetable oil over medium heat for 10-15 minutes or until well-done.
Remove the beef chunks from the pan, reserving the drippings.
Dice the sweet potato.
Heat the drippings over medium-low heat. Slowly add flour and water into the dripping while whisking to create a thick gravy.
Add the meat, sweet potato, carrots and green beans into the gravy and stir to coat.
Cook until the carrots are tender – about 10 minutes.
Store remaining stew in the fridge for up to five days.
BEEF & RICE MEAL
This is a great recipe to cook if we don’t have a large amount of time during the day. If you’re thinking, ‘oh my goodness, I have such a long day,’ and are wondering when you’ll have time to cook food for your family and your furry family, this is a great recipe for the day.
2 ¢ pounds ground beef
1 ¢ cups uncooked brown rice
1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 ¢ cups chopped butternut squash
1 ¢ cups chopped carrots
¢ cup frozen peas
4 cups of water
Total: Makes approx 11 cups (or 88 fluid ounces)
Stir in all ingredients with 4 cups of water in a crockpot.
Cover and cook on low heat for 5 to 6 hours or high heat for 2 to 3 hours.
Stir as needed and cool to room temperature.
THE PUMPKIN DOUGH TREATS:
FOR WHEN YOUR DOG HAS AN
Pumpkin is extremely beneficial to our dog’s body … and it can help when your dog is feeling a bit ‘under the weather.’
1/3 cup extremely cold water
2/3 cup pumpkin puree (canned or home-made)
2 cups whole grain brown rice flour
1 large egg (you can omit this if your dog is allergic to eggs)
2 1/2 tablespoonful flax-seed oil or olive oil
Total: Makes approx 24 1 oz balls (or 24 fluid ounces)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Use two baking sheets and baking paper to avoid sticking.
Mix lightly beaten egg and pumpkin in a separate container until smooth. If you don’t want to use egg then just smooth the pumpkin puree separately and proceed to the next step.
In a larger bowl, combine flax-seed oil and brown rice flour.
With constant stirring, add the pumpkin mixture to the rice mixture and slowly add water. Be sure to leave some of the rice to be used as some sort of toppings for the cookies.
Hand mix the ingredients thoroughly.
Using two pieces of baking or waxed paper, roll dough out to desired thickness.
Remove the top baking paper.
Evenly pour rice flour onto the top of the dough and lightly press it to the waxed baking paper.
Remove the paper and cut to desired sizes.
Place in the oven for 35 to 40 minutes or until the top is completely dry.
Cool and store in a dry plastic or glass container until ready to be served.
HOMEMADE CHICKEN JERKY STRIPS
You should never trust store-bought raw hides, many contain a ridiculous number of additives and preservatives. Plus, we have a recipe that tastes even better-homemade chicken jerky strips are a perfect replacement for rawhide. And, they’re easy to make. Store them in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to two weeks (if they last that long!).
2 to 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Total: Makes approx 10-20 strips
Preheat oven to 200 degrees
Trim all excess fat off the chicken breasts
Cut into 1/8 inch thick strips using a paring knife
Bake for 2 hours on a baking sheet until strips are dry and hard
Cool completely before presenting to your pooch.
FROZEN BANANA TREATS
These treats are perfect for those hot days. You know, the days where your dog is reluctant to even go outside? Or, is excessively panting because they’re so hot. And, it’s oh so simple. All you need is yogurt, bananas, and peanut butter.
4 cups plain yogurt
2 tablespoons peanut butter
3 bananas, ripe, peeled & mashed
Total: Makes approx 8 1 oz treats
Blend all ingredients together into a puree.
Pour into 4-ounce plastic cups (ice trays or toddler popsicle trays work well).
Freeze until firm.
Can be kept in freezer for up to two weeks.
TIPS ON HOW TO MAKE DOG FOOD
It’s important not to feed your dog the same dinner you’re eating. Dogs have different nutritional needs than we do. And, our food is considered “table scraps” when we’re discussing it from our dog’s standpoint. Your dog’s diet should never be over 10 percent table scraps or treats.
WHAT FOODS SHOULD YOUR DOG NEVER EAT?
As a dog lover, you’ve probably seen these foods on the ‘no-no’ list before, but it’s always good to have a reminder when you’re cooking homemade dog food. The most toxic foods to our dogs are the following:
Onions and garlic (garlic can be fed in moderation- see my article on dogcancerblog.org to learn more about this–but NEVER onions)
Grapes and raisins
Raw bread dough
These are just a few foods your dog isn’t allowed to eat … there are more (this could be another article). If you’re unsure if your dog can have a certain food or not, be sure to do some research.
Talk to you again, soon!