Having a healthy pet is definitely part of your main concerns as a dog owner. Have you ever considered home cooking for your mutt to ensure the quality and purity of the nutrition you provide it with? Let’s discover the basics of homemade dog food and meal prep for dogs with all the safety measures they entail for beginners!
Homemade Dog Food
While home cooking for dogs isn’t recommended before they blow out their first candle, homemade dog food should be considered as part of a healthy diet.
The main benefit of this is knowing exactly what you are feeding your baby, whether it's organic or not, if there are added vitamins and minerals and if the quality of the meat and vegetables in the meals meets your high standards.
In addition, if a special diet for dogs is required or your animal has intolerances and allergies, it might even be easier to cook for your dog yourself rather than be on the hunt for food that corresponds to its exact needs out there.
Making your own dog food can also turn out to be cheaper than premium dog feed and therefore, you’ll be able to save a few bucks all while increasing your dog’s energy, efficiently controlling its weight, and reducing its shedding!
Right Ratio for Your Dog: How Much?
Homemade dog food doesn’t just happen overnight with what you have in the fridge. You need to learn the optimal ratio of ingredients in the food you feed your dog.
Finding the exact quantity to give is hard at first, as well as the right balance of protein, vegetables, calcium, and carbohydrates. A rule of thumb is to feed your baby 2 to 3% of its body weight, then adjust the quantities depending on if your dog loses or gains weight.
As far as the right ratio goes, try to stay within these numbers:
- 40% meat
- 30% vegetables
- 30% grains
Some people don’t like to give grains, or some dogs don’t digest them well. In this case, a 60% meat, 40% vegetable ration will be key. Changing up what you feed your dog is important to ensure a balance of vitamins and minerals.
Within the meat you choose, try to include organs, but no more than 5% of liver. If your dog has a heart condition, include hearts, and so on for all organs. Make sure the meat isn’t too fat. Chicken and pork are leaner, and you should avoid nitrates at all costs (bacon, hot dogs, ham). Sardines and eggs constitute a great addition, such as calcium-rich food like kelp powder and mussels for trace minerals, eggs for vitamin D and fish oil for Omega-3s. Quinoa, buckwheat and barley are the best carbohydrates you can offer.
An important note: dogs can’t switch to homemade dog food overnight so ease them into it. Start with 80% store-bought dog food and 20% meal prep for dogs, then increase the percentage ever day over a week or so. Make sure there are no reactions, diarrhea, loss of appetite or vomiting when you monitor your loved one.
Food Preparation and Containment
Looking for the perfect food storage containers for your meal prep for dogs? We’ve got you covered!
Whether it’s bowls with silicone lids to prepare your portions in advance or treat makers that will help you create frozen or baked toppers for your dog’s bowl, our products are dishwasher safe and easy to clean.
Discover the different shapes and sizes available or even prepare some popsicles to freshen your mutt up this summer:
- Silicone Bake and Freeze Dog Treat Maker or 2-sized Maker
- Heart Shape Silicone Bake and Freeze Dog Treat Maker Molds—Pack of 2
- Silicone Bake and Freeze Dog Treat Maker—Pack of 2 (Bone Shape)
- Framed “Spill Resistant” Silicone Dog Treat Mold, 9.5” x 9.5”
Safety Measures for Homemade Dog Food
Now that you’re ready to create some delicious dog food for your animal that is over a year old, you may want to validate your action plan with your baby’s vet.
Veterinary specialists will be able to confirm that you’d calculated the right weight for the size chart, that you’re feeding all the right produce and meats to your pet and that everything is balances.
Not only will this professional be able to decipher any potential allergy concerns, but he or she may also recommend multivitamin and mineral supplements to accompany you in this change!
Have a great time browsing through recipes for dogs on the web now that you can manage the basics and have fun exploring the vast world of cooking for dogs!