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<--- This is Ted.
he's a regular visitor to the
The simple, healthy way to feed your dog.
Step into the
K9 Kitchen and have some fun preparing easy,
tasty, healthy meals for your canine companion.
Can't cook ?
No problem! Many of the recipes are fresh foods served raw.
Too busy ?
Sorry, but we don't buy that one either ! These meals are quickly prepared.
Always fed commercial food ?
Aw, shucks, it's time for a change ! You don't have to stop feeding commercial food completely, just reduce the amount and substitute with some fresh foods. Eventually you will find that both you and your dog will prefer the fresh foods and you will continue to reduce the commercial foods to a minimum.
So, grab your
"official taster" —
yes, the dog in your life, and let's get started.....
First a few basic comments.
Nutrition is a science and it is beyond the scope of this website to discuss the various elements of foods, eg, proteins, carbohydrates etc. etc. The idea here is to feed your dog a wide variety of foods to ensure that his diet contains all the elements necessary for good health. After all, isn't this what you do with your own diet ? Using a wide variety of foods helps to create the balanced diet that will supply all the essential nutritional elements. Dogs, contrary to popular belief, are actually omnivores rather than carnivores.
There are three food groups which you should include in the diet:
Protein - necessary for growth, healing of tissue and it plays a vital role in the cell membrane. Found in meat, fish, eggs, cheese etc.
Carbohydrate - this should form the bulk of the diet as it provides energy. It is found in grains and formed into biscuits, often with added minerals and vitamins not found in meat.
Fats - a highly concentrated energy source, one specific fatty acod Linoleic acid found in cornoil is essential for dogs.
You should also ensure that you include the correct balance of vitamins and minerals. These may not seem important but they are vital to the well-being of your dog. For example, Vitamin D controls the calcium stores which with phosphorus is essential for healthy bones, a very important consideration with a giant breed.
A high proportion of meat in the diet is not ideal. Besides it is an expensive way to provide energy, as that is what happens to the excess protein not used in healing and growth! Indeed, feeding your dog on a diet of prime steak may cause skeletal problems as it is low in vitamins A and D and the calcium:phophorus ratio is seriously imbalanced for a dog.
What about feeding bones ?
This is a personal choice. Many owners feed bones because they believe that bones are a natural food for dogs. Dogs have the correct type of teeth and digestive system to cope with raw meaty bones. Let me repeat the three last words — they are important.
Raw meaty bones.
The bones must be fed raw, as cooking them will make them more difficult for your dog to digest. Never feed cooked bone to your dog, as this is not what nature intended.
And the meaty part ? If bones have a reasonable covering of meat, this helps to protect the lining of the gut, as the meat covering the bone acts as padding while both meat and bone are digested together. Nutritionally, it also makes a more complete meal, because the bone contains minerals which are not supplied in sufficient amounts in the meat.
When your dog has digested as much of the bone as he can, he will regurgitate any remaining pieces. Don't regard this as a reason to stop feeding bones, this is a perfectly natural process.
It is important to make sure you get your meat from a reputable source,particularly with the threat of E. coli, Salmonella and other food-borne bacteria created by modern mass- production methods. After all if it isn't fresh and hygienic enough for you, why should you feed it to your best friend !
Foods which have been frozen or refrigerated should be warmed to room temperature before you give them to your dog so they don't cause a digestive disturbance.
As you change the diet for your dog, watch for signs of the food disagreeing with him, eg runny stools or development of skin problems.
Though these recipes are used for Pyreneans, they may be fed to any breed of dog, therefore the quantity to feed at one meal is not generally stated. This is left for you, as owner, to decide, depending on the size and activity levels of your dog.
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