Meet my new favorite face. For the past two weeks this little guy has been my sidekick. He’s been staying with us while we search for his family. My girlfriend rescued him off the street and he didn’t have a collar or microchip and we weren’t able to locate the family before she left the country. She had the intentions to keep him if they didn’t turn up, so Tommy and I became foster parents and the little munchkin became my love and shadow. (He’s pretty obsessed with me too. I make a good step momma.)
Like most rescues, he took some time to adjust and trust us… However, he never warmed up to the idea of dry dog food. I tried preparing his commercial dog food every which way even soaking it in chicken broth and mashing it up to change the texture, but he never ate well. I tried different brands, flavors, he didn’t even like dog treats! Whaaa?! Rude.
With all the failed attempts to get the little man happily fed, I was coming across more and more brands and realizing how many ingredients I was unfamiliar with as well as the amount of ingredients included. Why should pet food be any different than human? We should always try and eat unprocessed foods and chose brands with simple ingredients (the less the better) and ones you can pronounce!
So with our SFG pact to eat less processed foods and be healthy, why wouldn’t we include our beloved pets too? They deserve the best and since making his food he eats more regularly and bigger quantities as well as having a more shiny/soft coat. Plus, a large percentage of dogs have allergies and skin related issues made worse by hidden ingredients in commercial dog food. (Even the expensive premium brands! Which can be upwards of $40 per bag and $10 for a small bag of treats!) By taking control of your pet’s food you will be saving money and eliminating the unknowns of what’s really in your furry friend’s “feed-grade” food.
That face though
The Unknowns of “Feed-Grade”
Nearly all commercially available dog and cat food is made with “feed-grade” ingredients instead of “human-grade” which is a lower quality and has more allowances for toxins than human-grade food. For meat and bone based by-products they come from the rendering process and can contain “dead animals from farms to animal shelters.” (as reported by National Agricultural Law Center). Which brings up another scary fact: These animal by-products can contain pentobarbital, an anesthetic used to euthanize in kill-shelters. (confirmed through FDA testing of dog foods).
Healthy Homemade Dog Food Recipe #1
* 1 cup cooked chicken or turkey
* 1/2 cup steamed vegetables (carrots, broccoli, squash, spinach, sweet potato)
* 1/2 cup prepared quinoa or brown rice
* 4 tbsp. no-sodium/low-sodium chicken or beef broth
Mix together, store in refrigerator and use within 5-7 days. I also recommend doubling or tripling the recipe and freezing in small batches for a later date.
Healthy Homemade Dog Food Recipe #2
* 1 cup cooked protein (ex. skinless, boneless chicken, lean ground beef, ground turkey, boneless fish, or lamb)
* 1 cup cooked brown rice
* 1 cup chopped cooked vegetables (ex. squash, peas, green beans, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots. Choose two.)
* 1 teaspoon vegetable or fish oil
* 1/2 teaspoon bonemeal (available online)
* 1 vitamin and mineral supplement (powdered, such as Nupro)
Mix together, store in refridgerator and use within 5-7 days. I also recommend doubling or tripling the recipe and freezing in small batches for a later date.
Quick DIY Low-fat Dog Food #3
* Cottage cheese, cooked egg and or chicken – 1/2 of total
* Cooked oatmeal – 1/3 of total
* Organic canned pumpkin (plain, no spices) – 1/5 of total
Mix together, store in refridgerator and use within 5-7 days! This particular recipe is quick and easy and always a hit! It’s perfect as an occasional filler meal, but adding bonemeal and vitamins is imperative for regular nutrition. Also, make sure to label all your homemade pet foods so your significant other doesn’t mistake it for a midnight snack Sorry, Tommy. ha.
What to look for in a dry/wet food:
- Natural preservatives (Vitamin C/E) or no preservatives
- Made in the U.S.A.
- Human-grade ingredients (although there are very few foods that can put this on their label and you won’t find this on any packages of kibble)
Ingredients to avoid:
- Corn and wheat gluten
- Meat and grain meals and by-products
- BHA (Butylated Hydroxyanisole)
- BHT (Butylated Hydroxytoluene)
- Food Dyes (Blue 2, Red 40, Yellow 5 and 6, 4-MIE)
- PG (Propylene Glycol)
- Rendered fat
I made this little montage video the first day I had the baby (old man really…) and had to share. He’s just the sweetest! To say I’m in love would be an understatement!
What brands do you trust and have worked for your pets? Share your pet food recipes in the comment section or with us on Facebook!