We have a special focus on providing balanced dog food recipes for dog parents who are serious about feeding the best possible homemade diets be they raw, cooked or a combination of both. Dogs with health concerns are certainly a big part of our roster, but healthy dogs deserve the same attention to their diets.
As of this writing, a search for ‘dog food recipes’ brings 878 million (seriously!) results. Add ‘balanced’ to that search and the number goes down to 8 million. No doubt an impressive number, but what we find listed in those searches is telling.
The first and second searches contained duplicate recipes and these recipes lack vitamins and minerals – how is a dog parent to know whether these recipes are balanced and will positively support their dog’s physiology?
We find dog parents want:
- easy to make recipes
- dog food recipes that use foods that are easily available and affordable
- recipes that meet optimal levels of nutrients
- the ability to feed healthy treats, while maintaining their dog’s healthiest weight
Important Factors to Consider When Evaluating Recipes
- Is the diet formulated to meet the National Research Council (NRC) which is an independent body, AAFCO or FEDIAF (guidelines are for commercial products formulated with expectation of less absorption of minerals)? We strongly suggest NRC.
- Look for a defined source of calcium. Cheese, yogurt, nuts and seeds don’t provide enough.
- Is there a source of iodine (eg: kelp) in the diet?
- Does the diet include a breakdown of all vitamins, minerals and amino acids it provides?
- Does the recipe include caloric values and the suggested feeding guidelines based on calories, or is it based on feeding 2-3% (or other) of body weight which isn’t as accurate as calories?
- Are supplements included if a food source doesn’t provide enough of a nutrient?
- Does the diet include detailed information about the antioxidants and phytonutrients it provides?
- Are there step by step instructions rather than telling you to combine everything and serve?
- Does the diet plan/recipe include tips for treats?
- Is the diet specified for adults or puppies? Nutrient values would be very different.