Making your dog a healthy homemade meal will not only make him happy, it'll make you happy too when you see how easy it is. Dogs can eat many of the same foods that people can if they are prepared correctly. Substituting your dog's usual kibble with an occasional homemade meal makes an excellent nutritious treat for your canine companion.
Ground beef, or hamburger, is a ideal source of protein for homemade dog food. Extra-lean ground beef, which has 10 percent or less fat content, is the best choice. Dogs can develop an inflammation of their pancreas called pancreatitis if they consume too much fat at once, so extra-lean ground beef is essential.
A starchy carbohydrate, rice can be added to homemade dog food to add bulk to the food and energy for your dog. Plain brown rice is a good source of not only carbohydrates for energy, but also fiber for digestive health. Rice is gentle on dogs' stomachs, so if your pooch is sensitive to common kibble ingredients such as corn, wheat or soy, rice is a good carbohydrate choice.
Eggs are a fantastic source or protein and fat soluble vitamins as well as minerals. Some dogs even like to eat the eggshells because they contain ample amounts of bone-building calcium. If you want to add eggshells to your dog's food, grind them in a food processor first to make them into a powder.
In addition to meat, rice and eggs, you can also add a variety of healthy vegetables into your dog's homemade food. Vegetables provide vital vitamins, minerals and fiber. Choose from cooked green beans, carrots, spinach, kale, broccoli, cauliflower or many other of your favorite vegetables. Do not include onions or garlic, however, because these are toxic to dogs.
Preparation and Serving
Brown 1 pound of extra-lean ground beef in a large pan until it is cooked thoroughly. Once the meat is cooked, drain off any excess fat from the meat and discard it. Add 2 cups each of cooked brown rice and your choice of steamed or boiled vegetables into the beef while the pan is still over low heat. Once mixed, break two eggs into the mixture and stir, coating the meat and rice with eggs. Cook the mixture thoroughly until the eggs solidify and are cooked thoroughly. If you are adding powdered egg shells to the food, add in up to two shells' worth of powder and mix it in by hand.
Allow the mixture to cool slightly before serving it to your dog so it does not burn his mouth.The mixture can be served as-is or it can be mixed in with your dog's kibble. If you are serving the food in addition to your dog's kibble, be sure to reduce the amount of kibble he is eating for the day. The amount of homemade food your dog should eat depends on the weight and condition of your dog, however, 1/2 cup per 10 pounds of body weight is a basic rule.
If you make more than your pup can eat that day, store the rest in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week. The food can also be frozen in a freezer bag or airtight container to extend shelf life.
Leeann Teagno has been writing professionally since 2006. An English major, she continues to study information systems management at American Public University. Teagno is an organic gardener, cook and technology buff with past employment in mobile communications. She also volunteers at an animal shelter and operates a home bakery.