Homemade dog food meals may make it possible to feed your dog well for less than commerical dog food. A 15- pound bag of high-end dry dog food costs approximately $42, and a 5.5 oz. can of high-end wet food runs approximately $2. Feeding a medium-sized dog two cans of wet mixed with two cups of dry food costs about $5 per day. That doesn’t include the treats, bones and tidbits that inevitably make their way into her tummy! Compare that with four cups of our Puppy Stew at $2.25 per day.
Important: Many veterinarians, while acknowledging that pet food recalls and the poor quality of some pet foods are causes for concern, still feel that homemade dog food diets, when fed exclusively, may result in nutritional imbalances and vitamin/mineral deﬁciencies that may pose threats to canine health. Therefore, if you choose to feed your dog homemade dog food, it is important that you understand and provide what your dog needs to stay healthy; veterinary nutritionists can assist in developing suitable homemade diets. While caution was taken to give safe recommendations and accurate instructions in this article, it is impossible to predict an individual dog’s reaction to any food or ingredient. Readers should consult their vets and use personal judgment when applying this information to their own dogs’ diets.
It is easy to learn how to provide our dogs with nutritious, delicious homemade meals that are reliably safe and made with little or no fuss. Let’s get started.
Homemade Dog Food: Puppy Stew
- 3 lbs. boneless chicken meat with skin (white or dark; skin may be too rich for some dogs, and its inclusion is optional)
- 2 cups brown rice or barley
- 6 large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
- 6 carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 medium package (24 oz.) frozen peas or lima beans
- 56 fl. oz. diced tomatoes with juice*
- 3 Tbsp. fresh parsley or oregano
- 1⁄2 cup fish, safflower or olive oil
- 1 tsp. iodized salt Water
1. Place all ingredients in a 3-gallon stockpot and add enough water to well cover.
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2. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer and cover.
3. Cook for two hours until all ingredients are soft and liquid is reduced, stirring occasionally. If needed, add small amounts of additional water to keep the mixture from going dry.
Approximately 32 cups, which feeds a medium-size dog for 8 days at 4 cups per day.
Serving size: 2 cups
Total cost: $18
Cost per serving: $1.12
Daily cost: $2.25
Energy: 342 calories
Protein: 23 grams
Carbohydrates: 31 grams
Fat: 14 grams
Omega-3 fatty acids: 1 gram
Dietary fiber: 7 grams
Calcium: 65 mg
*While tomatoes have been listed in some places as toxic, the toxicity actually comes from unripened (green) tomatoes, tomato leaves, and tomatoes stems not fully ripe tomatoes. Learn why tomatoes are safe for dogs.