Cooking dog food at home allows you to share your culinary aptitude with your dog. Preparing Chucky's food homemade allows you to mix and match ingredients, including supplements, and modify recipes to better meet your dog’s needs and preferences. All you need is a Crock-Pot and lean protein like turkey.
Use organic ingredients or use what your local grocer sells. You need 1 pound of whole or ground turkey; 1 pound of pork or a whitefish like tilapia, cod or whiting; 1 pound of beef either ground or chunked; 4 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil; seven cups of leafy greens like collard greens, mustard greens, kale or spinach; one can of drained kidney beans or 1½ cups of dried rinsed kidney beans; four large carrots or two large sweet potatoes; a half-teaspoon of dried turmeric; a half-teaspoon of dried mustard; 7½ tablets of 250 milligram Tums; 2 cups of no-sodium broth or water; and 1 cup of uncooked barley.
The preparation time is about 15 minutes. Chop the greens into bite-size pieces. If you can’t find fresh greens at your grocery store, use frozen greens. Chop the carrots or sweet potatoes into 1-inch chunks. Leave the skin on the sweet potatoes for extra nutrients. Mince the garlic and add all three to the Crock-Pot. Add rinsed kidney beans to the slow cooker along with turmeric and mustard. Tums provide calcium, but you can substitute egg shells, uncut cow bones with marrow in them or 7½ teaspoons of 250 milligram bone meal. Next add the olive oil and broth. The last ingredient to go in is the meat. Put the lid on the Crock-Pot and cook on low for 8 to 12 hours.
After the dog food has cooked for 8 to 12 hours, add 1 cup of uncooked barley. Use a potato masher to mix up the cooked food with the barley, and cook on low for one more hour. Turn the Crock-Pot off and let the food cool down.
Storage and Feeding
Store the food in a large container or divide it up into portions. Refrigerate for up to three days, or freeze portions and use warm water to reheat the food. Feed twice daily using one-eighth cup to one-fourth cup of food for dogs of up to 10 pounds dog, one-half to 1 cup for dogs weighing 11 pounds to 50 pounds, and 1 to 1½ cups for dogs who weigh more than 50 pounds.
Based in Las Vegas, Sandy Vigil has been a writer and educator since 1980. She taught high school and middle school English and drama for 11 years. Vigil holds a Master of Science in teaching from Nova Southeastern University and a Bachelor of Arts in secondary English education from the University of Central Oklahoma.