Today I was seeing what I could make out of all the random stuff in my fridge, and thought I would post a basic breakfast I made for my awesome dog, Valentine. I cook clean, fresh foods for her to mix with her kibble whenever possible, or if we are away somewhere that only has crap dog food in the stores.
This super easy breakfast included:
- 1 Scoop Wellness kibble
- 1 small Fuji apple
- 1 egg
- 1/4 C carrot chips
- 1/4 C brown rice
- Sprinkle of cheddar cheese shreds
My version was the same minus the kibble (uhh), plus some carne asada and apple on the side. Two happy girls!
I strongly encourage all dog parents to read the labels on their kibble, and whenever possible mix with real foods. If you have been thinking of switching, but your pup gets a little stomach-upset changing food brands, ease them onto it with plain rice and boiled chicken (no seasoning).
NOTE: This is also great for dogs who have recently undergone any sickness or medical treatments that need to be eased back onto solid food or are acting picky, especially if it is out of character. My dog for example, turns into a spastic wilderbeast at feeding time, so I know if she is hesitant or mopey around food – these are super key hints she is not feeling well. Luckily she has been in excellent health and we have not had this at all since her first few months of life, or the time she ate a gigantic weed-oil cookie from a med clinic. That time she still ate her food though, was just falling over while doing it.
Doggy health and bodies respond to “packaged” foods the same way ours would, and so many “big” brand dog foods are essentially the same as eating McDonald’s every day. You don’t even want to know what “meal” is, chicken meal, beef meal, etc – Google it, if you do. Some great, healthy additions to your dog’s diet that you probably already have at home include:
- chicken (plain) or lean beef (plain)
- apples (see below)
- carrots, shredded or chopped – dog tummies can’t break down the outer cell structure of some vegetables, and you may need to steam/chop them
- most veggies (see below)
- brown rice, in moderation
- boiled or scrambled egg
- some hard cheeses, in moderation
You will see a remarkable difference in their overall health and it will show first in their coat. Even if you happen to be cooking your own people meal, putting a side just a little to mix with your dog’s meal will not go unappreciated!
For their safety though, remember these off-limits foods:
- NO Processed human foods! Our junk is just as toxic to them
- NO onion/garlic (so bizarre these are powdered flavorings on many cheap dog treats!)
- NO grapes/raisins
- NO mushrooms
- NO lunch meats/pressed meats
- NO avocado/skin/seed
- NO chocolate (if you didn’t already know this from Family Guy!)
- NO yeast bread or yeast doughs
- NO alcohol or beer! some people find it funny to watch their pups lap up some spilled beer, but both ethanol and hops are toxic to dogs
- NO Sugar substitutes! (Xylitols, sugar alcohols, aspartame, any of those nasty sugar replacements)
- NO Coffee, tea, caffeine
- NO added salt
- NO apple seeds, peach pits, cherry pits, etc
- NO tomato, potato, or other veggie leaves/stems/vines
- Many condiments and seasonings, containing mustard seed, dehydrated garlic/onion, etc
- NO weed or weed edibles. This also seems super funny to some people, but I learned the hard way, a time that Valentine got into a super concentrated weed-oil cookie my roommate had at the old house. Ingesting THC, varying with your dog’s size and weight, can be super dangerous as it slows their blood pressure and heart rate. Valentine had begun to have seizures and was in danger of her heart slowing to a stop. This was a devastating night that ended at 6AM the next day, in the Animal ER, with Valentine being fed aspirated charcoal, rounds of induced vomiting, and a huge $$$ ER bill for mom. PLEASE be careful with weed and weed edibles around your animals!
This list may seem long, but it’s actually simple to remember that if it has a bunch of ingredients, alcohol, sweetener, or well, THC, it may not be a good idea. The list of good foods up top is an easier guide.
Be well, love yourself, your dog, and take care of your bodies!