When deciding to feed one’s dog something other than commercial dog food, it is important to be informed about nutritional requirements and risks involved. There are lots of good resources, and we recommend starting with the National Academy of Science here.
We are sharing with readers the recipes that we prepare for our own family. We know our dogs and what kind of food they digest well, we know our own habits, likes, dislikes, and food sensitivities. Anyone preparing food at home for their dog must also pay attention and learn these things.
- We don’t make mush for our dogs. A lot of people do, and you can also choose to do so. Google anything about any food with “dog” in the search bar and you will have 10,000 articles telling you that whatever it is, it’s a choking hazard. The truth is, FOOD is a choking hazard, but like us humans, dogs have teeth. Every time I give my human kids something to eat that isn’t yogurt or ice cream there is a risk they will choke. But they are 2 and 4, and I don’t puree their dinners because that would be weird. It would also be a lot of work, and probably pretty disgusting. I want them to enjoy their food, and I expect them to chew it. Likewise, I want my dogs to enjoy their food, and I expect them to chew it.
- Raw meat carries all sorts of bacteria. To avoid all risk, it should always be cooked. However, when we buy meet from a high quality, local source, we accept the risks and let our pups indulge.
- We feed our dogs whole bones. Depending on the size of the bone and the size of the dog, this can come with risks. Raw bones are less likely to splinter.
- We accept that variation in diet means variation in poop. It might be inconvenient, but it is normal.
For readers interested in learning more about The Story of Kibble, The Politics of Production, and The Science of Dog Nutrition, you can consult our articles here.