Make Homemade Meals for Your Dog as a Special Treat
Cooking delicious meals is great for your family and friends, but it's also a perfect way to pamper your pooch. Rather than head to the grocery store to pick up canned food for your furry friend, make him something delicious at home. You can even involve the kids in cooking for Fido, making this a fun family activity.
These recipes are simple to put together and cost-effective too, saving you some money while giving your dog a tasty, home-cooked meal. Meals for dogs are simple – canines are omnivores, meaning they eat both meats and vegetables. Include both in food for your pup, along with a starch or grain to complete a healthy meal. Best of all, little to no seasonings are needed, so preparation is super-simple.
1. Doggie Beef and Bean Stew
Whip up some beef stew for your pooch by braising a pound of cubed stew meat or ground beef in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil. At the same time, boil 2 white potatoes or sweet potatoes for 20 minutes or until soft, and cube them into bite-sized pieces. Add the braised beef to a large pot and add in a cup of frozen corn, the cubed potatoes, 1/2 cup of fresh or frozen green beans, a 15-ounce can of kidney beans and 4 cups of low-sodium beef broth. Cover, and simmer over medium heat for about 1 1/2 hours or until the beef and vegetables are soft.
2. Slow Cooker Chicken and Rice
If your pup loves chicken or has an upset tummy, this chicken and rice dish is sure to make him happy. Combine 4 chicken thighs, 2 chopped sweet potatoes, and a cup of frozen string beans or carrots in a slow cooker. Add 3 cups of low-sodium broth, and a cup of brown or white rice. Set the slow cooker to low, and cook for 6 to 8 hours or set it to high and cook for 3 to 4 hours. Once the mixture is done, stir the ingredients; fluff the rice with a fork and remove bones from the chicken before serving to your hungry pooch.
3. Salmon Biscuits
Some dogs love a good crunchy kibble to eat, and this recipe allows you to make your own canine cookies. Boil and mash 3 potatoes and 2 carrots. Combine a 7.5-ounce can of low-sodium boneless salmon in water with 4 cups of flour, the mashed potatoes and carrot mixture, 3 teaspoons of fish oil and 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth to form a dough. Roll the dough into a long rectangle over a floured surface until it's 1/4-inch thick, and cut it into 1-inch pieces. Bake on two cookie sheets at 300F for 45 minutes. Allow the finished cookies to sit in the over for an additional 3 hours before serving the treats to your pup. Store remaining cookies in an airtight container.
4. Chicken and Cheese Salad
Dogs love chicken and cheese, and this quick-and-easy recipe combines the two. All you have to do is boil some chicken breasts or thighs, eggs, a carrot and some chicken livers to make this recipe. Mix up a cup of shredded boiled chicken, a chopped hard-boiled egg, 1/2 cup of cream cheese or cottage cheese, a teaspoon of chopped liver, a cubed boiled potato, a chopped boiled carrot and a few teaspoons of plain Greek yogurt. Grind up the eggshell in a food processor, and add it to the mixture to provide calcium for your pooch. Drizzle with a teaspoon of fish oil, and sprinkle with a bit of shredded cheddar cheese before serving this salad to your pup.
5. Yogurt Lamb Stew
This dish is inspired by the flavors of Greece and is great for dogs who have allergies to other types of meat. Brown a pound of cubed or ground lamb in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Separately, cook 2 cups of steel-cut oats or barley in a pot. Add 2 cups of water to the lamb along with a cup of mixed frozen vegetables. Alternately, you can substitute an equal amount of fresh chopped carrots, broccoli or corn. Simmer the lamb and vegetables over medium heat for 30 to 40 minutes or until soft. Stir in the cooked barley or oats and a cup of plain Greek yogurt. Garnish with dried parsley.
When feeding your pup homemade food, always speak to your vet first to ensure your furry friend is getting the proper amount of vitamins and minerals to stay healthy.
Never add ingredients like onions, garlic, nuts or raisins to your dog's food, because these can be toxic to canines.
- Adapted from: Allrecipes.com: Buddy's and Bubba's Homemade Dog Food
- Adapted from: PetGuide.com: Simple Homemade Beef Stew Recipe For Dogs
- Adapted from: The Bark: Dog Food Recipes: Easy Crockpot Chicken & Brown Rice
- Adapted from: The Bark: Dog Food Recipes: Fifi's Fishy (or Chicky) Affair
- Adapted from: Whole Dog Journal: Easy Homemade Dog Food
- Adapted from: Food.com: Homemade Lamb Meal for Dogs
- American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals: People Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Pets
Based in Las Vegas, Susan Paretts has been writing since 1998. She writes about many subjects including pets, finances, crafts, food, home improvement, shopping and going green. Her articles, short stories and reviews have appeared on City National Bank's website and on The Noseprint. Paretts holds a Master of Professional Writing from the University of Southern California.