How to Prepare Homemade Dog Food: 12 Steps

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How to Prepare Homemade Dog Food: 12 Steps
How to Prepare Homemade Dog Food: 12 Steps

Your dog is part of your family, so it's only natural that you want to feed him as healthy as yours. However, don't think you can give anything to the animal. Dogs have different nutritional needs than people; therefore, it is necessary to understand what makes a balanced diet suitable for him. Then start preparing delicious homemade meals for your pet.


Part 1 of 3: Seeking Nutritional Balance

Prepare Home Cooked Food for Your Dog Step 1

Step 1. Understand the difference between your pet's diet and that of a stray dog

Yes, wolves and wild dogs can survive in the wild without eating balanced meals. However, their average life expectancy is much shorter, and they have very different eating habits. You can even give pure protein to the animal, but wild animals eat organs such as kidneys, liver, brain and the like. Therefore, their nutrition is more complex than that of domestic animals (composed of meat for proteins and rice for carbohydrates).

  • If your dog's home-cooked meals are poorly prepared, it may take a few years for the dog to experience problems. That's because he's probably consuming calories but not micronutrients (vitamins and minerals).
  • The diet can even serve for weeks or years; however, sooner or later, the dog can injure its paw because of calcium deficiency, for example.
Prepare Home Cooked Food for Your Dog Step 2

Step 2. Use professionals to create the diet

Unfortunately, you can't just prepare tasty foods. Since there is no "universal" option that works for any dog, you will have to think about a diet made by a specialist specifically for your dog. For example, a developing puppy needs twice as much calories for every pound of weight as adults, while older dogs need 20% less than adults.

Many staple diets, even those put together by veterinarians, do not include all the necessary nutrients. A study conducted in the United States analyzed 200 recipes of the type. Most of them were deficient in at least one essential aspect of nutrition

Prepare Home Cooked Food for Your Dog Step 3

Step 3. Learn to prepare food correctly

After the specialist gives you the specific recipe for your dog, process the food so you don't lose vitamins and minerals. Always follow the instructions to the letter. If you have to start with chicken with skin, for example, start like this. Do not remove the skin, or it may unbalance the fat content. Also, weigh all ingredients with a kitchen scale.

  • Do not boil vegetables too much to preserve nutrients. Instead, try steaming them and serving them a little raw so you don't lose the vitamins.
  • Do not improvise or substitute the ingredients, or you could unbalance the nutritional content of the food.
Prepare Home Cooked Food for Your Dog Step 4

Step 4. Supplement calcium from the dog's diet

Dogs need a lot of calcium. You can even give the pet a bone, but this poses health risks. Bones can break and thus scratch the walls of the intestine and cause painful inflammation and sepsis (blood infections). Instead, mix calcium carbonate and citrate or crushed eggshells into a powder. A teaspoon is equal to 2200 mg of carbonate, and an adult dog weighing about 15 kg needs 1 g per day (½ teaspoon).

Bones can end up bunching up in the dog's intestines and create blockages - requiring surgical intervention. Also, it is very difficult to know when a dog has had enough calcium from the bones it eats

Part 2 of 3: Preparing the food

Prepare Home Cooked Food for Your Dog Step 5

Step 1. Include proteins

An adult dog weighing about 15 kg needs at least 25 grams of pure protein per day. You can include eggs (which contain high amounts of essential amino acids) and animal proteins such as chicken, lamb or turkey. Some vegetarian protein sources are also interesting, such as seeds. Try to separate at least 10% of the dog's diet for proteins (meat).

Proteins are made up of small blocks called amino acids. There are ten amino acids that dogs cannot produce and therefore need to be consumed in their diet

Prepare Home Cooked Food for Your Dog Step 6

Step 2. Add fat

An adult dog weighing about 15 kg (about the size of a staffbull) needs at least 14 grams of fat per day. For this, you can include meat or chicken skin in the animal's diet. It is also good that at least 5% of the diet is fat (according to weight).

Fats contain soluble vitamins, which are essential for the dog's health. They are also essential for the production of new cells and for their proper functioning

Prepare Home Cooked Food for Your Dog Step 7

Step 3. Include carbohydrates

Most of the calories a dog consumes must come from carbohydrates - more specifically, half of them. An active adult dog weighing about 15 kg needs 930 calories per day. To do this, include wheat, rice, oats and barley in the animal's diet.

Carbohydrates are sources of energy (some of which are present in proteins and fats) and also generate fiber, which improves bowel function

Prepare Home Cooked Food for Your Dog Step 8

Step 4. Include minerals

Dogs need calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, selenium, iron, copper, etc. Mineral deficiencies can cause a variety of problems, including bone weakness (which makes bones more fragile and susceptible to fracture), anemia, or poor nerve conduction (which in turn can lead to seizures). Different foods contain varying amounts of minerals, even more vegetables and fresh vegetables - which need to be well chosen to bring benefits to the animal's health. Try to include the following items in the diet:

  • Vegetables (raw or cooked), such as spinach, kale, Brussels sprouts, Chinese cabbage and Swiss chard.
  • Pumpkin butternut (boiled).
  • Turnip (boiled).
  • Parsnip (cooked).
  • Green beans (cooked).
  • Okra (boiled).
Prepare Home Cooked Food for Your Dog Step 9

Step 5. Add vitamins

Vitamins are also important components of a dog's diet. Deficiencies in these nutrients can cause problems such as blindness, a weakened immune system, skin damage, and vulnerability to infection. Since they are found in varying amounts in different foods, you can give your pet vegetables. Vegetables are a good source of vitamins and minerals, but not every dog ​​likes their taste. Serve them raw, but remember that the animal can become flatulent.

  • Avoid giving the dog overcooked vegetables, or you may end up missing out on vitamins.
  • Cook vegetables and vegetables that you wouldn't even eat (such as turnips, sweden parsnips, parsnips or potatoes) to avoid the risk of clogging your dog's intestines and making them more digestible.

Part 3 of 3: Feeding the Dog

Prepare Home Cooked Food for Your Dog Step 10

Step 1. Understand how much food you can give the dog

Research the amount of calories your dog needs to maintain a proper weight - neither above nor below normal. This varies depending on some details. For example, an 18 kg dog does not need twice as much calories as a 9 kg dog just because it is twice as heavy.

  • Research nutrition tables and charts that specify your puppy's caloric needs. This way, you will have a general idea according to the animal's weight.
  • After orienting yourself regarding your dog's weight, take into account the differences in his/her lifestyle when compared to other animals (obesity, age, if the animal is neutered or spayed or, in the case of the female, if it is pregnant). For example, a 4.5 kg puppy less than four months old would need about 650 calories, while an older, neutered dog of the same weight would only need 350 calories.
Prepare Home Cooked Food for Your Dog Step 11

Step 2. Understand what foods are toxic to dogs

Many people know that chocolate is bad for dogs. However, there are several other foods that are healthy for humans, but harmful for animals. When trying out new recipes, always check the ingredients to see if they are safe. Examples to avoid:

  • Raisins.
  • Grape.
  • Onion (including chives and chives).
  • Garlic.
  • Tomato.
  • Chocolate.
  • Avocado.
  • Yeast dough.
  • Caffeine.
  • Alcohol.
  • Artificial sweeteners.
  • Xylitol.
  • Macadamia nuts.
Prepare Home Cooked Food for Your Dog Step 12

Step 3. Have a plan B if the food runs out

If you're cooking for the dog every four or five days, you probably won't have any problems. However, from time to time, the food may run out or the animal may have an upset stomach (and thus need different foods). In both cases, use a homemade diet of chicken and rice - a solution that doesn't hurt the intestines and is ideal for these situations. Just don't use it for a long time, as it doesn't have enough vitamins and minerals.

  • To prepare chicken and rice, use one cup of cooked chicken breast mixed with two or three cups of cooked white rice. Do not add fat or oil to the chicken.
  • Give the dog the same amount of food as you normally would; it depends on each case. Generally speaking, it is good to give about 1 1/3 cups of chicken and rice for every 4.5 kg of body weight.


  • For convenience, prepare all the dog's meals for the week at once and freeze any portions you don't use right away.
  • Remember to lower the day's food from the freezer to the specific compartment of the refrigerator. If you like, post a message on the door so you don't forget.
  • Warm the food with hot water until it is at room temperature. Then add the necessary supplements, such as vitamin C or E, flaxseed and salmon oil, etc.
  • Remember that some foods (grapes, raisins, chocolate, etc.) are harmful to dogs; find out what you can and cannot give your pet.
  • When buying packages of frozen vegetables, read the list of ingredients. Many of them include onions - yet another harmful food for dogs.


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