How to make your own dog food
The choice of dog food now available today can be dizzying – and dog owners only want the best for their best friends.
In recent years, the number of people making their own dog food has increased – dog owners are replacing or supplementing traditional dog foods to help combat digestion issues, allergies or simply ensure their pets are getting the right balance of ingredients.
Thinking about making your own dog food? Here are a few recipes and tips to get you started.
Dog food recipes online
For a quick introduction to making your own doggie meals, read the blog Homemade Dog Food.
Written by an animal lover who’s passionate about dog nutrition, you’ll find a variety of recipes here – including recipes for cooked dog food, raw dog food and even how to make bone stock to increase your dog’s calcium intake. There are also a range of technical tips and advice on how to store dog food. And if you’re feeling nervous about starting the food-making process, the handy Do’s and Don’ts section offers a set of clear rules to stick to.
Looking for an easy tried and tested recipe? This submission at Allrecipes.com – usually a hub for sharing human food recipes – uses only turkey, rice, frozen vegetables, water and herbs, and has been very well reviewed by the website’s community.
Dog Training Central also has some great recipes, including a raw meat mix and a cooked buffalo meatloaf, along with some essential lists of what your dog can and cannot eat.
If you’re not willing to commit to making all your dog’s food but you’d like to make a small start, experiment with making doggie treats. Expert dog website Cesar’s Way has some useful directions on this with simple recipes for you to try.
For instance, if you’re used to making biscuits for your human friends, try baking savoury dog biscuits with a simple mix of flour, egg, salt, hot water and stock granules.
This site also suggests drying out unseasoned meat and vegetables in a low oven to create a snack mix from leftovers you might have lying around the house.
Tips on keeping costs down and saving time
Once you’ve started making your own dog food, you may find it hard to go back to buying it off the shelf. However, they will be periods when you don’t have time to make dog food or you can no longer afford to do so. Leading UK pet website Pets4Homes has some valuable advice on how to bypass these potential problems.
For instance, make use of leftovers to feed your dog when you’re done with your family meal – though you should ensure that your dog can actually eat all the ingredients you’ve used.
Or, to cut the cost of buying fresh meat, look for ingredients in the reduced section of the supermarket aisle. If you’re trimming a piece of meat to cook for yourself, consider giving your dog the cut-offs as a treat.
Alternatively, pick a day of the week when you cook dog food in bulk; then, simply freeze it and defrost a portion each day.