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How To Make Natural Homemade Dog Food

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This page provides information about making wholesome homemade dog food — but for *mature* dogs only. You will learn an easy, quick and simple method to feeding your dogs that will help provide them with a more wholesome meal.

If you have a puppy, then please read the page that talks about how to make homemade puppy food.

For those who have both dogs and cats in the house, then you may want to read the page that talks about how to make homemade pet food. This page provides an easy method of feeding both mature dogs and cats at the same time.

Information about homemade cat food and homemade kitten food is also available.

Feeding dogs a wholesome raw meat diet is ridiculously simple. I've said that before and I will say it many more times. If you are feeling overwhelmed with information — it's not uncommon. I have found that some people are tense or overwhelmed, not because this is difficult or anything like that, but because people are afraid to make errors. Thus they put extra pressure on themselves to get things perfect. The reality is, you will never create a perfect diet. All we can do is create a diet that is as close to perfect as the joy of chasing a cat is to extreme bliss!

Some of the information on the preceeding and following pages will overlap and repeat itself, but I am assuming that those with dogs will only read the page for dogs, those with cats will only read the page for cats and so on. But if you are curious and read all of the pages, then yes, there will be some overlapping. However, the repition will also reinforce the information.

This page talks about feeding ground meat as well as meat chunks. Personally, my preference is to feed meat chunks. You, however, can decide what's best for you and your dog.

The pros and cons of feeding ground meat instead of meat chunks and vice versa was discussed at the beginning of Part 2 and also on the page that talks about how to prepare meat.

How To Make Natural Homemade Dog Food Using *Ground* Meat

How to prepare ground meat and vegetables has already been explained on the second and third pages of Part 3. Read them again if you have to.

Assuming you have prepared the ground meat and finely chopped some vegetables already, do the following when it is time to feed your dogs:

  • Remove the containers of ground meat and finely chopped vegetables from the fridge.
  • The following is a guide for you to use and is presented in a ratio format. Therefore, increase or decrease the amount needed based on the ratio.
  • Please remember, this is only a general guideline. If you think your dog will need more specific guides, consult a holistic veterinarian that is familiar with a fresh food program.
  • Mix 2 parts ground meat to 1 part finely chopped vegetables.
  • Once you have the necessary amount of food in the bowl, add hot water until the food becomes the consistency of a thick stew.
  • If you make the food too soupy, your dog probably won't eat it — thick is the consistency you want.
  • The hot water takes the chill off the food, replaces the water naturally found in the prey, and volatizes the odour.
  • Once you have added the hot water, then add other nutritional supplements.
  • Mix and serve.
  • It's really that simple!
  • Your dog should decide when they have eaten enough and they should walk away with some food still left in the bowl. Read the page on how much to feed your dogs and cats for more information (found in Part 1).
  • If you are feeding eggs, then the eggs replace the meat. Read how to prepare eggs for dogs and cats for more information on eggs.

The combination of food does not have to be accurate, just close. You can use a spoon, cup, or whatever you want to use for measuring based upon your requirements.

These are just guidelines.

Some dogs may like, need or want more meat or vegetables. Watch your carnivore friend as they will provide clues to what they need — give the body what it needs and the body will do the rest. Also, if on one day you are short of vegetables then don't worry about it as meat is the most important part of the meal.

The method of above is a basic and simple concept that can be modified based on your preference for doing things, your likes and dislikes, etc.

How To Make Natural Homemade Dog Food Using Meat *Chunks*

Feeding meat chunks is, arguably, even easier than feeding ground meat — the funny thing is, feeding ground meats is already ridiculously simple.

How to prepare meat chunks and vegetables has already been explained on the second and third pages of Part 3. Read them again if you have to.

Assuming you have the meat chunks already thawed in your fridge and some finely chopped vegetables ready to go, do the following when it is time to feed your dogs:

  • Remove the meat chunks and vegetables from your fridge at least 1 hour before feeding.
  • The amount of meat you remove from your fridge will depend on how many mouths you are feeding and ultimately, how much they will (or can) eat.
  • Add the supplements to the meat chunks.
  • Although there are numerous beneficial pet supplements you can add to the food, the single most important supplement is a calcium supplement for pets.
  • A guide to pet supplements can be found in Part 1.
    • Read the tips on the first page of Part 2 for some tips on mixing supplements in with the meat chunks.
  • Let the food sit on the counter for at least 1 hour to remove the chill.
    • If you don't have time to remove the meat and vegetables from the fridge at least 1 hour before feeding, that's okay. The only reason why this is done is to help remove the chill. But if you are in a rush and must feed the food cold, it's okay. It's not the end of the world.
    • Remember, when letting the food sit on the counter that some dogs have been known to eat the food before it's time to eat. So you might need to cover or somehow protect the food.
  • One additional benefit of letting the food sit on the counter for about 1 hour before feeding is that your dogs can smell the food. This gets many dogs excited and so when it comes time to eat, they're ready to go.
  • When feeding meat chunks to your dog, put some meat chunks onto the plate and put some of the finely chopped vegetables to the side.
    • If your dog does not eat the vegetables, then don't worry about it. Just feed your dog only meat.
    • Unlike cats, dogs can't as effectively cut meat into the size they need for swallowing. A dog can and will chew its food into a smaller size, but nowhere near as efficiently as a cat. If you sit and watch, you will observe cats are real experts at cutting through meat using their molars while dogs try to be experts. But in a dog's excitement to eat their food, they are more likely to swallow a piece that might be too big for them.
    • For the most parts, dogs rip meat off their prey while cats cut meat off their prey. If you watch a wolf or coyote feast on its prey, then you will notice they sink their teeth into their prey and then begin pulling and ripping meat off their prey. Realizing that dogs can't cut their meat as well, I like to cut meat chunks into an appropriate size for dogs.
    • Dogs don't need really small meat chunks. They can, in fact, swallow relatively large pieces of meat. But if you notice your dog is having to chew its chunks of meat before swallowing and is getting tired doing so, then that piece of meat is too big and you will need to cut it.
    • When the meat chunk is the right size, the dog will just grab the meat, open the mouth and swallow — instantly gone like a magician's disappearing act.
    • If you are feeding a bull mastiff, don't feed it tiny meat chunks that are meant for a Chihuahua and vice vera.
    • Don't feed your dog as if it is an human infant. A dog doesn't need you to cut the meat up into super small sizes. Doing so will just waste your time. Dogs can swallow, relatively speaking, large pieces of meat.
  • When adding vegetables to your dog's plate or bowl, for every 2 parts of meat, add 1 part vegetables.
    • The combination of food does not have to be accurate, just close. You can use a spoon, cup, or whatever you want to use for measuring based upon your requirements.

Some Variations Of Making Homemade Dog Food

Here are some variations on how to do the above things:

  • Instead of using hot water to warm the food, you can quickly pan fry the ground meat and vegetables. However, the word is quick. You don't want to cook the meat although some may darken due to the heat. Instead of using oil to heat the meat, use water. But whatever you do, don't use the microwave.
  • You can prepare enough finely chopped vegetables in advance and freeze in plastic bags or a reusable container of some kind. This way, instead of chopping vegetables every few days, you can chop a large amount, freeze and then thaw as needed.
  • Although some people mix the ground meat and vegetables together and freeze combined, I personally still prefer to keep the meat and vegetables separate. This way, if your dog no longer likes, wants or craves certain meats and/or vegetables, then at least not all is wasted. Believe me, it's not uncommon for our dogs to change their likes and dislikes based on the needs of their body.

Suggested Frequency of Feeding

A mature dog is essentially any dog that is older than 1 year of age.

The exception to this rule are large breed dogs that don't stop growing until they are 2 years of age.

Mature dogs only need 1 meal per day, but you can, feed two meals per day. But if you feed your dogs properly and if they eat all that they want at each meal, you will find that although they may look for or ask for some food during the day (which is normal), that they will really only need 1 meal per day.

The reason why a dog may still look for or ask for some food during the day, even though they are not really that hungry, is because as a carnivore they naturally and instinctively worry that maybe their next meal will not be found. Of course, your dog does not have to worry because you are going to feed your dog again. But, in the mind of your dog, they worry about their next meal — it's just in their nature to be like this.

Feeding 1 meal per day allows and encourages your dog to eat a large meal. Then after eating their large meal, your dog may play for a little before sleeping. Then, during their period of rest, their body does all of its detoxification work.

Dogs are not herbivores which are constant grazers. Dogs need big meals, not small meals. Feeding your mature dogs more than once per day is not really beneficial and in fact can be detrimental — leading to such problems as colitis.

Remember, only large breed dogs should eat two meals per day from the age of 1 to 2. But once your large breed dog reaches 2 years of age, they too only need 1 meal per day.

Ultimately, when you feed your mature dog one meal per day, you will find that when their next meal is ready to be served, they will be hungry and ready to eat.

Feeding 1 meal per day to your mature dogs makes life more convenient for us because we can leave, during the day or overnight, if necessary and not have to worry about our dogs. Feeding one meal per day gives you some additional freedom and creates less work for you.

Some people don't feel comfortable feeding just one meal per day because they are thinking of their dog as if they were human — but your dog is not human, they are a carnivore. Never loose sight of this.

If you forget how much to feed your dogs, please remember to read the page about how much to feed which can be found in Part 1.

When To Feed

When you feed your dogs is a personal choice. Ultimately, it does not matter. But I would sugggest you feed when it's best for you.

If you are busy in the morning then I would suggest feeding your dogs at night. Why? Because if you feed your dogs at night then you will find that in the morning, your dogs are not very hungry at all. Thus they won't be bothering you or, in some cases, waking you up at 5 AM wanting their food.

You can, of course, feed at noon, 4 PM, 8 AM, etc. It does not really matter. Find the time that's best for you.

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