I’ve raised my Shih Tzu since he was 10 weeks old, and he is currently 3 years old. Everyday he eats a different fruit/vegetable, typically with chicken, but he also occasionally he eats salmon, beef, pork (very sparingly since it can cause worms), and turkey. He also eats lentils, rice, beans, and oatmeal. I also add eggshell powder, nutritional yeast, Vitamin C, a small amount of garlic, and fish oil to their food. Variety is good — they need it to get proper nutrition. I’ve never had any dietary problems with him, his skin is healthy and he is energetic. I recently adopted a 8 yr old Llasa Aapso who was religiously fed so called high quality grain free kibble his entire life (I know this because I am related to the prior owner). He developed chronically itchy skin (with blisters and black scar tissue from scratching), and his owners did not know what to do with him. I immediately switched him over to a home made diet (like my Shih Tzu) and he immediately improved. I did give him the anti-fungal, anti-bacterial medication and prednisone the vet prescribed to initially improve (but not get rid of) his skin condition. The vet wanted me to give him the prescription diet and cortisone shots to keep the condition at bay. However, I refused because I know personally based on my own diet changes (I used to be 100+ pounds overweight and I lost it by eating better—not less— food) how feeding your body higher quality food can drastically change your condition. It has been a couple of months, and the Llasa is almost unrecognizable. I truly believe that feeding dogs commercially prepared dog foods leads to many ailments down the road. No human doctor would prescribe eating Total cereal, and a multivitamin to obtain optimum or even mediocre health. I don’t know why people think it is any different for animals and kibble (even high quality ones).
I have a 5 month old puppy who will not eat unless beyond starving, I have tried every brand of dog food on the market, wet and dry. Making my own was the only choice I was left with and she eats a different meal every day. Dogs only get “sensitive” to food if you stick with one kind morning, noon and night, then they have issues. If they have a varied diet from young, they have no problems. Mine has boundless energy perfect poos, glossy coat and bright eyes.
As I eat my weight in sweet strawberries this time of year, the subject of what to do with the abundance of spring and summer fruit comes to mind. I am usually more than content with enjoying berries and stone fruit as-is, but when I’ve gone a little overboard at the farmers market, jam is one of the many things I consider making. Or is it jelly? The two terms for fruit spread have always confused me a bit. Luckily, there’s an easy way to distinguish between the two.
Unless you are hunting and fishing for your dog… The proteins most people use are farmed. Chicken, beef, pork, fish of all varieties, used for human consumtion, are not the same as from the wild. Even “Organic” meats are still grown on farms. This brings about complications from denser populations that wolves and coyotes dont face when they eat raw. Most people agree Kibble is not a great choice…. The question then becomes is it natural to feed your dog raw farmed meat?
I make food for my three dogs… The recipe is 1.5 cups of brown rice, 1.5 cups of brown lentils cooked in the instant pot for 23 minutes with 6 cups of broth and 3 sweet potatoes and a half cup of bone meal. Then I cook and food process 8 pounds of chicken or ham. Blend both parts together and refrigerate. I vary the meat from week to week as well as the veggies.
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Dogs, wolves, anyone can get salmonella poisoning. It’s what they call survival of the fittest. We don’t exactly keep track of the wolves that are dying and surviving. Plus, their bodies are quite used to it. And as Dawn said below, our dogs are not wild anymore. With children around the house and the way our dogs kiss us/sleep on the bed, I would not feed our dogs raw diet because as we evolve, so do our domesticated dogs. I completely agree that kibble is a big no, but would not feed my dogs raw either.

In my experience that is odd. I have experienced the exact opposite in my dogs, and I have more rice and a ton of vegetable matter. Is the Rachel Ray food also a new thing for your dogs? Because kibble is typically associated with voluminous stools. Meat and carrots certainly wouldn’t cause this problem on their own. Are you cooking the game meat? I sure hope so…introduction of a raw protein might also cause loose as well as voluminous stool, not to mention being a potential source of parasitic infection, but that’s a whole nother issue.
One of my recipes is very similar to this one. I have six different recipes because they get tired of the same thing plus, they need different vitamins just like we do. What I make depends on what’s on sale but I do try to feed them fish high in omega 3’s at least twice to three times a month. I also switch out the veggies, too. It’s so much cheaper! I made two weeks worth of food for my two small dogs and the whole batch only cost 11 dollars. I found chicken liver on sale for 75 cents a carton, so I bought all they had! Such little effort to provide my dogs with food that they love and is so good for them. Why wouldn’t you do it for them?
Treat your pup to a festive meal around the holidays with this recipe from VetCo. It utilizes a lot of leftover ingredients you'll find on your dining room table. The ingredients are safe for your dog. You can whip this meal up in only a few minutes and spoil your canine companion. The recipe makes a lot of food, so you'll need to portion it out based on your dog's size.
I needed to help my 10 yr old, 100 lb dog lose weight. I found that he loved cooked vegetables, especially green beans, that are filling yet low in calories. So I bought the huge (1 gal) can of green beans and added a large scoop to his regular kibble when I didn’t have other cooked vegetables left over from my meals. He love sauerkraut too! I was working full time and didn’t have a lot of extra time to cook his meals from scratch.
Originally from Chicago, Nicole Janiga joined the Chewy team as a marketing intern in January 2017. Since then, Nicole has continued writing and photographing for Chewy as a Content Collaborator while completing her education at Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business. She is majoring in both marketing and corporate innovation, before returning to Chewy as a Marketing Analyst. In her free time, Nicole enjoys traveling, riding her horse or snuggling up with her Pug, @zoetheloaf, and Terrier, Cozmo. 
Hi Kathy! I believe there was a link toward the beginning of the article but, for a puppy, the general rule (from what I understand) is 1/2 a cup for every 5 pounds of weight. So, if your pup weighs 15 pounds, you’d feed it 1 1/2 cups a day, ideally splitting it into three servings (most commonly 7am, 12pm, and 5pm) of 1/2 a cup. I hope I helped you out a bit!
I have a 9 year old toy poodle mix and a 5 year old shih tzu- and they are very finicky so I started cooking for them and my vet was okay with it. I make either turkey or chicken I use brown rice, green peas ,green beans, carrots, zucchini, pumpkin/ or sweet potatoes and sometimes broccoli and cauliflower. I cook the ground meat with olive oil then cut and boil all vegetables let both sit then cook rice. I mix everything together and I will add a can of dog pumpkin (low in sugar) I make a big pot and freeze in big freezer 1 gallon bag which is 1 week for both dogs. I usually cook once a month. My dogs love it they lick the plates. Seems happier. I also saw where people are worried about calcium, well I give my dogs every morning 3 tablespoon of goat milk for each dog. It does take about an hour or so to complete the receipt but worth it. My dogs haven’t gained weight and because of all the water in vegetables they hardly drink water which they drank so much with commercial food. It makes me so happy to see them happy
Also, avoiding any organ meat (like liver or heart) in DIY homemade dog food meals because it looks inedible to us is another big mistake. If this happens every once in a while, that won’t be a problem, so don’t throw away the most recent batch you've just made simply because you forgot a piece of liver. However, doing this systemically can lead to a lot of deficiencies and health issues for your dog, according to studies.
I recently started making my dogs’ food, started as basically just a way of using up excess veggies, and lunch meat in lieu of throwing it away. Just run them– chicken, ham, beef, turkey lunch meat, along with my salad fixings–kale, spinach, cabbage, tomatoes– and the vegetables I mixed in with their wet food every night. Corn, broccoli, lima beans, carrots. Ran everything through the chopper..keep the veggies in one container, the meat in the other. For the first time in years, they eat every bite of their food. And added benefit? It’s WAY cheaper than the $9 a night (I have three big dogs) canned food I’ve been feeding them.
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