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It wasn’t until the 1940’s or so that there were commercial pet foods on the market. Prior to that, dogs ate what the humans didn’t finish….food scraps. But today, you can learn how to make healthy, homemade dog food at home!
Later, by the 1980’s or so, the pet food market picked up steam and became the mega-business it is today. In 2011, it was a $61 BILLION market, and $23.05 billion was spent on food alone! Americans will spend about 1% of their income on their pets annually, vet care being the number one expense, food is second.
Can you say “sticker shock”??!! I don’t know about you, but I don’t really like paying upwards of $50 for a bag of better dog food. First of all, that’s just insanely expensive and secondly, I can do better to make my own.
We have three dogs, all with very different roles on the farm and different nutritional needs. Our dogs are pets, but are also an investment and we want them to be healthy without breaking the bank.
Personally, I’ve never really felt like I had a handle on exactly what is in these commercial dog foods. Yes, I can read the ingredients, but sometimes I feel like I’m either short-changing my dogs or getting ripped off. I came across this very disturbing article (Warning: this could ruin your day) about what could be in dog food, and while I can’t verify it’s accuracy, the information is enough to make me reconsider commercial dog food.
Then there’s the option of making your own dog food, but with a family to feed, can it be done affordably? I think so. Keep in mind how expensive vet bills are! Having a healthy dog is a lot cheaper than having a sick one!
But do you have the time to make your own dog food? You will if you coordinate what you’re already cooking for your family with these recipes! You can print these recipes out and keep them in your cookbook for easy reference.
So I’ve done a little research and come up with two ways to feed your dog in a healthier way:
First: Kibble supplementation
Second: Full recipe dog food (Part 2 soon)
(I’m going to have to break this up into 2 posts due to length)
Recipes and nutritional information in this post are formatted from “Dr. Pitcairn’s Complete Guide to Natural Health for Dogs and Cats“, one of my favorite books on pets.
Fresh Meat Supplement for Dog Kibble
When mixed with kibble, this recipe yield at least 30% protein, 20% fat and 50% carbs.
- 3 pounds (6 cups) chopped or ground raw turkey, chicken, lean hamburger, lean chuck or lean beef heart
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil (cold pressed, organic)
- 1 tbsp Healthy powder see notes
- 1 1/2 tsp bone meal
- 1 tbsp Animals Essentials calcium
- 50-200 IU Vitamin E
- 5,000 IU Vitami20 Vitamin A with 200 IU Vitamin D Or alternate with Fresh Egg Supplement
Mix the oil, powder, bone meal and vitamins together.
Then combine the mixture with meat, coating it well.
At mealtime, feed about 6 tablespoons of this mixture for every cup of dog kibble served.
Fresh Egg Supplement for Dog Kibble
Cheap and easy!
- 1 tsp vegetable oil
- 1 tsp Healthy Powder
- 1 1/2 tbsp bone meal
- 50-200 IU Vitamin E
- 4 large eggs
Mix all ingredients together.
At mealtime, add about 2 tablespoons per cup of kibble.
Use the eggs raw.
- 2 cups nutritional or brewer's yeast
- 1 cup lecithin granules
- 1/4 cup kelp powder
- 4 tbsp. bone meal
- 1,000 milligrams Vitamin C
Mix all ingredients together and store in refrigerator.
I hope you enjoy these recipes and pick up Dr. Pitcairn’s book, it’s worth every penny!