Saturday, May 25, 2024

Nutritionally Complete Homemade Dog Food

What Should I Put In My Dogs Homemade Food

Nutritionally Complete Homemade Dog Food

In general, homemade dog food needs a source of protein, all the essential fatty acids, all the required vitamins and minerals and enough fiber to optimize digestion. Not only do these components need to be present, but they must also be in the proper ratio to the other ingredients. Its not an easy thing to make a safe homemade dog food recipe!

Researchers have analyzed hundreds of recipes for homemade dog food. Invariably, they find the recipes are deficient in one or more vital nutrients.

One of these studies done in 2013 looked at more than 200 recipes and found that only a handful of them was nutritionally complete and balanced. And all of those were written by veterinarians!

It is possible to create safe, nutritionally complete and balanced dog food at home. But it requires careful analysis based on data that are difficult for consumers to find.

Thanks to a couple of innovative companies, anyone can make nutritionally complete homemade dog food. And these recipes are safe to be fed every day, long-term.

If you are the owner of a healthy adult dog, check out the free recipe software at You can choose from hundreds of common and exotic food items to produce a recipe and instructions for making safe, nutritious dog food.

If your dog has specific health issues or is a puppy under 12 months old, you can purchase a custom recipe made by one of Balance ITs veterinary nutritionists.

How To Find The Perfect Vet

Its very important to understand: 1. How to balance the meals so that your dog is getting its essential diet components, and 2. What dogs should and should not eat.

If youre considering switching your dog to a homemade diet, the best thing that you can do is consult a canine nutritionist or a holistic veterinarian with training in canine nutrition. They will guide you in creating recipes that will offer your dog a 100% nutritionally balanced diet.

Dont forget that your dogs nutritional needs are constantly changing. These needs are based on many factors, including age, weight, activity level, and health condition. As these variables change, your dogs diet will need to change too.

For trusted information, reach out to a vet nutritionist from this list of board-certified vet nutritionists from ACVN. Look for veterinarians specialized in Small/Companion Animal Nutrition.

A vet-nutritionist or holistic vet with expertise in canine nutrition can guide you when creating balanced recipes for your pup

Freeze Dried Homemade Dog Food

Freeze-drying helps keep the nutrients 100% intact, and it’s almost as good as feeding dogs raw food.

One of the easiest to free-dry is chicken liver because after boiling and cutting it into uniform pieces, you only need to put it on a baking sheet with parchment paper and freeze it.

After a week, you can already feed it to your dog if there’s no moisture in it.

Recommended Reading: What Foods Are Toxic To Dogs

Is Homemade Dog Food Better

Homemade crockpot dog food can be better, but that is not always the case. You will have to put more effort into choosing ingredients and ensuring the food is balanced.

You may need to talk to your own veterinarian and look at various food recipe ideas for your furry best friend to meet his nutritional needs.

That being said, homemade dog food can be better, especially if your pup is on a restricted diet or has allergies.

What Nutrition Guidelines Should You Follow

Pedigree Large Breed Complete Nutrition Dry Dog Food

Like humans, every dog is different, so this is not a one-pup-fits-all rule. Serving size, your dogs weight, health conditions, size, and activity level are all factors you should consider when determining whats suitable for your dog.

However, in general, dogs need six basic nutrients to maintain a healthy, balanced diet: water, protein, fat, carbohydrates, minerals, and vitamins. A mix of these nutrients provides energy for your dogs body to metabolize and grow.

To ensure your dog is getting all the vitamins and minerals he needs, you may want to add a fully balanced nutrition blend, like one of these blends from Just Food For Dogs. And in addition to meals, you may also want to add a multivitamin like Zesty Paws Multivitamin Chews to ensure your pup gets the recommended balance of vitamins and minerals.

Check with your vet before adding any type of supplement to your dogs diet because over-supplementation of vitamins and minerals can sometimes have serious health consequences in dogs.

Read Also: American Journey Large Breed Puppy Food

Beef And Veggie Pot Recipe


This recipe uses beef a protein not often found in dog recipes. Not only does this recipe include easy preparation and slow cooking, but it also contains ingredients that hold up better in a cooker and do not turn into mush. An easy-to-prep one-pot recipe, this is going to make your work easier, and your little dogs are going to love it!


  • canned, washed, and strained kidney beans
  • 1/2 cup fresh or frozen peas


  • In a 6-quart slow cooker, combine the above veggies with 4 cups of water.
  • Cook, covered, over low heat for 5-6 hours or high heat for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally.
  • Benefits

    • Contains easy to prep ingredients like butternut squash, carrots, and so on.
    • It is a one-pot meal that reduces cooking to the optimum level.
    • Takes lesser time to cook than other crockpot recipes when cooked on high heat.
    • Makes the cleanup process more straightforward due to only one main utensil being used.
    • Contains ingredients easily found at the nearest grocery store.

    Common Whole Foods That Are Toxic To Dogs

    Though knowing what macronutrients should be found in dog food is very important. It is even more crucial to know which common whole foods can be toxic to dog:

    • Certain fruits: grapes, raisins, apricot/peach/cherry/plum pits, green tomatoes
    • Certain vegetables: onions/scallions, raw and green potatoes, rhubarb
    • Raw dough or yeast

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    You Must Provide A Nutritionally Balanced Diet

    Dogs nutritional needs are different from our own, so its important to provide a diet that is balanced with the appropriate nutrients needed to optimize your dogs health.

    These nutrients include calories to maintain weight or encourage weight gain or loss protein fat vitamins and minerals. Not enough or too many of any given nutrient can lead to diseases, malnutrition, obesity, and even death.

    Homemade Dog Food For Post

    How to make a complete dog food recipe. | Dog Nutrition Lessons | Ep 10.

    Fatty food can upset your dog’s stomach and make your recovering pet feel worse. We recommend using lean meat for homemade dog food for post-surgery.

    Due to anesthesia, your dog may lose its appetite, so the key to tempting him to eat is using a light diet.

    Some of the best ingredients for their diet are salmon, eggs, carrots, blueberries, and brown rice.

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    More Vet Approved Homemade Dog Food Recipes

    Just Food for Dogs is a California-based company that sells prepared fresh dog food made from human-grade ingredients. They employ veterinarians and animal nutritionists on their staff and have been offering high-quality products since 2010. JFFD products are a great option if you want to feed fresh, human food to your dog without having to cook it yourself.

    In addition to prepared dog food, they offer DIY Kits with a recipe and powdered supplement to make your own dog food at home. The site has several recipes made from common ingredients like chicken breasts or thighs, fish, turkey, and ground beef that are nutritionally complete and balanced after adding the prescribed amount of powdered supplement that comes in the DIY Kit.

    The company states that its recipes have been through third-party feeding trials and are complete and balanced. They also have options for feeding puppies!

    Just Food for Dogs uses ingredients that may add to a dogs healthy nutrition. For example, the chicken and rice recipe includes not only chicken thighs, but also organ meat like chicken livers, chicken gizzards, and spinach.

    Ive made several different recipes that they provide for free on their website. Ive found them to be simple and my dogs love the meals!

    Heres one of the recipes from the site for beef and potato homemade dog food. My dogs love this one!

    • 1 Tablespoon JustFoodForDogs Omega Plus Fish Oil
    • 3 Tablespoons JustFoodForDogs Beef and Russet Potato DIY Nutrient Blend


    A Meal For You And Your Dog

    Love cooking for your dog but never have the time? Rocky Kanaka from The CWs SAVE our SHELTER, Dog’s Day Out and founder of The Dog Bakery, has a solution. This easy to make salmon meal for yourself can also be made for your dog.

    This recipe is designed for those who want to eat healthy and want their dogs to eat healthy as well but are always on the go. This is also one of the most eco friendly recipes we have seen. Instead of tossing things we would usually not eat such as broccoli stems, the recipe uses these as a key part to the dogs delicious meal.

    This recipe also has a bonus tip on what to do with that salmon skin that is usually thrown in the trash. I get asked a lot if salmon skin is okay for dogs. While it is not safe if consumed raw, due to unwanted parasites, cooking in the oven for 20 minutes to make a crunchy, healthy, limited ingredient, organic, high omega dog snack that may help with heart health and give them a great skin and coat is a big win! says Rocky.

    And there is more, when you cook for your dog you are more conscious of what you put in your body. For all of those reasons and more we give this recipe four paws up!

    Healthy meals are important for you and your dog but the best thing about this recipe from Rocky Kanaka is it allows you to take time out of your day to spend time with your family two and four legged! Read on to find out how to do it or watch Rocky has he demonstrates!



    Also Check: Best Puppy Food For Picky Eaters

    Homemade Dog Food For Picky Eaters

    Is your dog a picky eater? It’s so frustrating when your dog acts fussy, right? But one of the advantages of homemade dog food is you can add a variety of food to make it exciting.

    Vets usually recommend a bland chicken recipe with white rice or meat from a rotisserie chicken. Other options include sweet potatoes, cottage cheese, bone broth, chopped spinach, and ground flaxseed.

    Can My Dog Eat Faq

    Royal Canin Small Aging 12+ Dry Dog Food for Senior Dogs, 2.5 lbs ...

    So many readers are asking if these vegetables for dogs safe? So let’s go through some of the most asked questions.

    Can dogs eat bell peppers?

    Yes. Bell peppers are loaded with essential vitamins, nutrients, and antioxidants beneficial to a dogâs health. Rich in vitamins A, E, B6, and lutein and are great sources of vitamin C and beta-carotene. Red bell peppers actually start out green and mature to red. They pack the most nutrition because they’ve been on the vine longest.

    Can dogs eat potatoes?

    Yes. Cooked potatoes in moderation are fine. Boil, steamed, or baked without seasoning are fine. They contain a number of nutrients including vitamins A, B6, and C, as well as minerals like magnesium, iron, calcium, and potassium. Raw potatoes should never be fed to your dog. Like other vegetables belonging to the nightshade family , raw potatoes contain solanine, a compound that can be toxic to dogs.

    Can dogs eat broccoli?

    Yes. Broccoli is best served as an occasional treat. It is high in fiber and vitamin C and low in fat. However, Broccoli florets contain isothiocyanates, which can cause mild-to-potentially severe gastric irritation in some dogs. Furthermore, broccoli stalks have been known to cause obstruction in the esophagus. Chop up the broccoli for your pet.

    Sassy girl, is happy. Okay, she didn’t like the spinach and pulled it out! But loves the rice and beef.

    The trick I learned was to chop it finer than seen here and she gobbled it all…

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    Homemade Dog Food Delivered

    In the age of UberEats, DoorDash, and having just about anything you wish delivered, you also have the option to buy fresh, natural dog food for doorstep delivery. It can be a huge time-saver and may be worth the cost after adding all the ingredients youll need to buy to cook a recipe.

    The Farmers Dog ships frozen, allowing you to keep it on hand or serve it daily as a regular meal. This food is made with fresh, healthy, and easy-to-pronounce human-grade ingredients. And you can spend your time on more important things, like belly rubs and walks.

    Homemade Dog Food: Not So Simple

    The evidence seems pretty clear: commercial dog food is often nutritionally inadequate, increases the likelihood of obesity and diabetes, and causes long-term bowel problems.

    With all of these issues surrounding ultraprocessed commercial dog food, we believe the solution is a nutritionally complete homemade dog food. That way, you know exactly what’s going into your dog’s body.

    But hold upbefore you go raiding your cupboard for ingredients, there is a catch or two

    Catch #1: Nutrient deficiency

    Just because commercial dog food is nutritionally deficient according to higher pet food standards doesn’t make homemade dog food automatically nutritionally complete. In fact, 95% of homemade dog food recipes are deficient in at least one nutrient.

    That may not seem like a lot but over time, it can have serious ramifications.

    Vitamin A deficiency, for instance, causes a weak immune system, itchiness and rashes, night-time blindness and weight loss. Meanwhile, a lack of vitamin E results in muscle weakness and reproductive problems.

    Even if you do calculate the exact nutrient quantities, heating food can decrease the nutrient content over time

    Catch #2: Delivery options still high in carbs

    We’ve discussed above why a high carb diet is bad for your dogit predisposes them to diabetes and kidney disease.

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    You Will Need To Use Dog Supplements To Balance Meals

    Homemade dog food supplements are often needed to ensure that the meals are balanced, particularly when it comes to vitamins and minerals.

    Follow all veterinary advice to be sure that youre providing the appropriate amounts of nutrients and that the diet is balanced considering any underlying health issues. Your veterinarian can also give guidance on the types of dog supplements you will need and recommended brands.

    Low Protein Homemade Dog Food

    The only nutritionally BALANCED homemade dog food (featuring 5 AAFCO tested recipes)

    Dogs with kidney problems or renal disease need a low protein diet. But it’s so tricky because there’s a thin line between too much protein and not having enough protein.

    That’s why vets often recommend commercially made low-protein dog foods. However, you’ll control your dog’s protein intake more if you cook homemade food by yourself.

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    Homemade Dog Food For Renal Disease

    If your dog is diagnosed with renal disease, you have to avoid sodium and phosphorus in its diet and minimize its protein intake.

    The right ingredients for their homemade food include green beans, pumpkin, baby carrots, sweet potatoes, bananas, apples, broccoli, and watermelon.

    They can also have some butter and whole milk yogurt since these are low in phosphorus but high in fat.

    The Ultimate Dog Food Formula

    corn oil, flaxseed oil, canola oil, safflower oil, olive oil
    Extras as needed, in moderation eggshell powder, yogurt, cottage cheese, wheat germ, hempseed, flaxseeds, nori or kelp powder, herbs and spices . Other supplements as needed.

    * Gizzards and hearts are considered muscle and organ meats. They have many benefits for your dog, but should be supplemented with strict organ meats like liver and kidney. ** Recent trends show that some dog owners are choosing to feed grain-free diets, and youve probably even seen some commercial foods advertised this way. According to the AKC, most dogs do just fine eating wheat and other grains but, as always, figure out what works best for your individual dog, including whether he or she has a gluten intolerance.

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    Balanced Homemade Dog Food Recipes

    Cooking for your dogs, when done right, can be very advantageous for the pet’s health. With the number of recipes we have here, there’s always something new for you and your pooch to try.

    But not all homemade dog food recipes will fit every dog , and more importantly, a pet owner must pay attention to the nutritional value of each dish.

    Balanced homemade dog food recipes are usually the closest to a healthy doggy meal but still require a vet’s assessment.

    Homemade Dog Food For Hypothyroidism

    Pedigree Adult Complete Nutrition Dog Food, 36 lb.

    If your dog has hypothyroidism, you need to avoid filler foods, beef by-products, and artificial preservatives.

    Fresh, natural foods are what they need, preferably lightly cooked or raw.

    Adding beets, spinach, beans, carrots, celery, and grilled chicken breast containing zinc, which helps produce hormones, can help them.

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    Vet Approved Homemade Dog Food In Australia

    Australian vets also recommend feeding dogs, especially puppies with commercial kibbles, because they’re nutritionally balanced.

    But it’s up to the owner if they want to feed their dog with homemade foods and treats.

    One of the most popular homemade dog foods to make is the chicken/turkey plus brown rice, egg, and veggie recipe. The veggie could be anything from carrots to broccoli.

    You Have To Follow The Recipes Exactly

    Once you have a nutritionally balanced recipe for your dog, you need to follow it preciselyfrom the ingredient types to measuring the ingredients to the cooking methods used.

    Cooking methods matter because steaming versus roasting versus boiling can change the nutrient composition of a food, which contributes to a balanced diet.

    Adding or substituting ingredients, like adding chicken on top, or substituting chicken for beef in a given recipe, unbalances the diet and poses a risk for providing too much or not enough of one or multiple nutrients.

    Generating several balanced recipes, using a reliable professional source, will allow you to offer a wider variety of ingredients while still making sure that you meet your dogs specific nutritional needs.

    Also Check: Rachel Ray Puppy Dog Food

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