Last night, I had a dancing, jigging, salivating Golden Retriever glued to my legs as I put the final touches on a meal I had in the crock pot. He knew it was for him (perhaps it was the smell of cooked beef liver that excites him but makes my Muggle kids nauseous?) and he just wouldn’t leave my side until the tasty concoction was in his bowl.
When Snitcher was a puppy and eating high-quality kibble, he was honestly not that excited about his meals. Sure, he’d follow me over to the bin, and run to the bowl. But often times he wouldn’t even finish what was in his dish! But when I added fresh ingredients as “toppers,” he’d gobble it up. Now, that he eats 100% homemade, he stalks me in the kitchen all day long, waiting for his own food! It’s an amazing difference.
I feed a large variety of foods. Nutritionally, dogs, like people, need an assortment of nutrients and minerals to be truly healthy. Because it’s almost impossible to have every meal be perfectly balanced, I try to make sure he gets an assortment of nutrients over the course of a week. I rotate his meals with combinations of muscle meats, organ meats, fish, raw bones (I never serve cooked bones, which can splint and cause choking), veggies, fruits, some grains*, and a variety of oils. I also add egg shells for extra calcium, yogurt for the probiotics, and homemade bone broth–which I’ll provide a blog post for soon!
So, what’s a typical meal? For this canine delight, I used my crockpot because I was busy yesterday. Some days, I just cook on the stove. Just depends! I do always try to make sure that I don’t OVERCOOK. I only cook as much as needed; I don’t want to cook out all the goodness!
This combination is ground turkey, ground beef, beef liver**, white potatoes with the skin peeled, organic rainbow carrots, spinach, and white rice. This will last in our fridge approximately three days. Most people make huge batches and freeze, but so far, I just like making fresh batches for the fridge. This particular batch has potatoes and rice, and only one green veggie, and no fish. To be truly balanced, I’ll switch up his next batch with less grain, different meats, and a fish like salmon, sardines, or mackerel.
For dinner each night, I add toppers for more nutritional value. This has a few strawberries (frozen, to cool down his crocked meal since he was drooling!), a raw egg with crushed shell for calcium, fish oil, and a frozen mold of homemade bone broth. I haven’t gotten around to ordering the cute dog-themed silicone molds yet that so many bloggers use, so for now, we have pumpkin-shaped broth! But these sure are adorable, right? Puppy Paw & Bone Silicone Molds
To say that he enjoyed it was an understatement!
*There are many differing opinions about feeding dogs grains. I feed a select few, and only after I have made sure he has had no reaction to them. He loves them, so I see no need to not add them as long as they aren’t problematic.
**Make sure that organ meats are only 10-15% of your dog’s diet. I do not measure anything exactly, but too much liver can be problematic for dogs.