I've made my own dog food in the past. When my dalmatian became super sensitive to most store bought foods, I began making his dog food. The only store bought food his system could tolerate was a canned version called Spot's Stew. It was $2.99 a can and I could NOT afford that on a long-term basis. That was in 2003. I have no idea what it might cost 9 years later!!!
And so my dog food recipe journey began.
I researched high and low, on the internet and in my own dog reference books, and eventually came up with several winning combinations that suited him.
Did I write those recipes down? Nooooo. And I wish I would have!
Because now Tori seems to be more sensitive to what I've been buying for her and Trixie the last 5 years or so. They both eat Merrick dry food and canned foods, but I also supplement them with Evo canned food.
I finally figured out several months ago that Tori was becoming sensitive to the Evo. This is a high protein, back-to-nature type of canned food, and my brain process told me that since the girls were getting older, they probably didn't need the high protein any longer.
Sure enough, as soon as I took Tori off the Evo canned food, she didn't seem to be vomiting as much.
But she still vomited SOMETIMES.
So I revisited my homemade dog food, and I eventually decided on a simple recipe that seems to work for her. I just top-dress her Merrick dry food with some of the homemade food.
I also give mix up one egg into Tori's food everyday. Trixie and Ringo sometimes get an egg -- just depends on how many eggs we are getting from the guineas.
Trixie and Ringo are still fine with the Merrick canned food, so I just discontinued the Evo canned food shipments, and changed my monthly dog food shipment to include one 30# bag of Merrick dry food, one 15# bag of Blue Buffalo senior dog food, and one carton of Merrick canned food. I started mixing the senior dog food with their Merrick dry food this year, since all 3 dogs are about 9 years old now.
Side note: I've been getting my dog food from Petflow.com for the last year or so now and I love getting my shipments automatically every month! If you want to give it a try, use coupon code oz49 and receive free shipping on orders over $49.
Tori's homemade dog food contains:
- brown rice
- one chopped apple
That's it. Simple. It works for her.
At first, I was buying whole chickens, sometimes getting even the organic whole chickens at reduced prices when they were close to their expiration date. But it was sooo messy in the oven.
So I recently switched to buying a family pack of chicken thighs for about the same price as the whole chicken. I dump them all into a large Dutch oven on the range top, and simmer in some water at a low temp til done. I let them cool on a large platter, and then tear all the meat off each thigh.
While I'm getting the meat off the chicken thighs, I throw about one cup of brown rice into the chicken stock in the Dutch oven and let that cook. Then I throw in all the chicken meat, plus about 1/2 cup of peas, and one chopped up peeled apple. I let it all simmer awhile, til the peas are no longer frozen and the apple is soft, then I ladle the food into Glad storage containers.
|Dog food on right... that's strawberry-blueberry jam on the left.|
One container stays in the fridge for the next few days of feeding, while the other two containers go in the freezer. I would say each recipe lasts me about 10 days or so? I've never really measured the end result nor calculated how long it lasts.
Because in the end it really doesn't matter.
I love our fur-kids and I don't mind making dog food when it becomes necessary!
If you'd like to visit some dog food recipe links, here's a few to get you started:
Allrecipes Homemade Dog Food Recipe
Home Cooking Information including Raw, Organic, Holistic and Supplements
WebMD: Healthy Dogs - Homemade Dog Food (information only, no recipes)