Whether you're making homemade dog food for your pooch or sharing healthy bites from the table, learning which foods are good for your dog and the proper ratios is essential. Hominy is a corn product, which most dogs enjoy as an addition to their food. It offers some health benefits, but watch out for signs of a corn allergy.
What is Hominy?
Hominy is dried corn kernels that were soaked in an alkali solution and washed to remove the hulls. The alkali solution makes the hominy easier to digest than regular corn and increases the availability of nutrients such as vitamin B and amino acids. Hominy is a good source of whole grain fiber. It's commonly used in soups and stews, and ground hominy makes tasty grits.
Adding Hominy to Dog's Diet
Dogs are omnivores, meaning it's natural for them to eat vegetables such as corn as well as meat, although vegetables should be in smaller quantities than the meat. Hominy doesn't offer enough of certain nutrients such as calcium to be a main vegetable staple, so it shouldn't be the only vegetable you share with your dog. Mix it in with other vegetables such as leafy greens, broccoli and carrots to take advantage of the nutrients they all provide. Some commercial dog food lists corn or hominy as an ingredient; that's acceptable, as long as the majority of the dog food is protein.
Dogs get most of their nutritional needs from meat, which should be about 75 percent of their daily intake. Vegetables and carbohydrates should make up the remainder of his diet, and hominy is a digestible and fiber-rich option. Too much hominy fills your dog's belly without giving him the proper nutrition, which can lead to flaky skin, a drab coat, low energy and a decreased immune system, according to PetMD. To ensure you're giving your dog the proper nutritional ratios, ask your vet about adding hominy to the pup's diet.
Signs of Trouble
It's not uncommon for dogs to have allergic reactions to corn products as well as grains such as wheat and barley. When you first add hominy to your dog's diet, don't change anything else about his food; this helps you determine whether he can tolerate hominy easily. Watch your dog after he eats for sudden itching, vomiting, diarrhea or, in more severe cases, seizures. If you don't see any signs of trouble after several meals, hominy likely is safe for your pooch. Always consult your vet about any food allergy concerns.