Disclaimer: I suggest you consult your pet’s veterinarian (as I am not one) to determine the best food for your dog’s breed, activity, etc.
I’m changing it up a bit for today’s post….let’s talk food. Dog food to be specific!
Recently, I have been paying close attention to the chemicals and preservatives found in food and how they can have adverse health affects. While reflecting on my family’s grocery list and meal habits, I couldn’t help but notice that we feed our dogs dry processed kibble, which seemed to represent everything I was trying to avoid consuming myself. Why couldn’t I extend these healthy eating habits to the canine members of our family as well? How would I go about doing that?
There seem’s to be a meal delivery plan for every lifestyle and diet these days, and dog food is no exception. While having fresh dog food delivered each week in perfectly portioned bags would be nice, I found out it comes along with a significant cost, and a bit more inconvenience on my end. With extreme heat and cold here in the Midwest, I would need to make sure someone would be home to receive the shipments each week and that would be nearly impossible.
Also, our dogs are used to eating ‘free choice’ (they have a bowl filled each night and choose when they want to eat during the day), which would have to change to them being fed twice a day, and while doable it would be an added task. We already fed them a very high quality dry food, they appear to have no allergies and also no issues with digestion. I knew there had to be a budget friendly way to incorporate fresh food into their diet, and that idea started a path down a Pinterest rabbit hole.
After reading several articles, recipes, and suggestions, I came up with my own dog food recipe and I have used it for the past three weeks. I didn’t want to cut out their dry food completely, as I am sure there are some added vitamins/minerals/proteins that they need from it. Instead, I simply give them one bag of homemade food once per day, on top of their free choice dog food (each bag is about 1.5ish cups). Here is what I have found so far:
1) Our dogs love the taste, and it fills them up! They are eating significantly less dry food, which means less cost!
2) They drink less water, which is normal, since they are eating less dry food.
3) They remain VERY active, and continue to have no issues with allergies or digestion.
This is a very easy recipe, substitute with whatever you have on hand, just google to see if it is healthy for your pet first (again, I am not a pet health expert).
You will need:
1 pound ground beef (I sometimes substitute a beef/deer mix)
1 can kidney beans
1 1/2 cups frozen peas
2 cups uncooked brown rice
4 large carrots, sliced
2 sweet potatoes, cut into 1in chunks
4.5 cups water