GO!

Do I need to add supplements to home cooked meals

This is the place to share your best homemade dog food and treat recipes with each other! Remember to use caution if your pet has allergies and to make any diet changes gradually so that your dog's stomach can adjust to the new foods you are introducing.

  
Bandit

The Sock Bandit
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 26, '12 2:12am PST 
At the moment I cook Bandit Kangaroo mince which is nice and lean, add a tin of peas and corn, grated carrot, sometimes grated brocolli, and either rice or pasta.
Should I be adding supplements as well? e.g. calcium. if so can somebody explain why this is necessary?
[notify]
Bruno CGC

Honorary Kelpie
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 26, '12 12:34pm PST 
Calcium is absolutely necessary. Dogs have a higher need for it than humans (possibly because their ancestors were predators who ate a high-calcium diet, from all the bones) and without it they will lose bone density pretty fast (as the body robs their bones.) They need 800-1000 milligrams of calcium per pound of food (as fed.) Calcium isn't really a "supplement", it's an essential part of the diet. To me, supplement means something you add on top of an essentially balanced diet, which is not really necessary (just for extra insurance.) This is definitely NOT true of calcium.

There are too many cases of dogs with bone disease (deformities in puppies, pathologic fractures in adults) vets see when people feed homemade diets without enough calcium.

Dogaware has some simple homecooking guidelines and suggestions for calcium sources, I suggest checking it out.
[notify]
Maxwell

I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 26, '12 2:19pm PST 
Another source of information is the B-Naturals newsletters.
This one is a nice summary of most of them.
http://www.b-naturals.com/newsletter/?p=289

Dogs aren't little furry humans. Max needs about 1/3 the calories I do but needs as much calcium, zinc and B12 as I do. Add a little bit of liver to the food too, it is an excellent source of B12. And don't emphasize low fat, healthy dogs do better with plenty of fat in the diet.
[notify]

Bandit

The Sock Bandit
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 26, '12 7:08pm PST 
Great, thanks so much for info. I'll check out the local pet store, hopefully they'll have some of these essential vitamins. If not perhaps I can order them online. dog
[notify]
Maxwell

I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
 
 
Barked: Fri Jan 27, '12 7:29am PST 
Not going to work. Pet vitamins are meant to supplement a commercial diet when you are filling gaps in a home cooked diet. They add an even amount across the board when a diet of fresh foods will be great here and severely deficient there. Your diet probably has about 10% of the calcium and 80% of the phosphorus your dog needs for example. All the iron and probably half the zinc. Most of the rest of the Bs but half the B12.

Read the links we posted. Since I was too lazy to make a clicky you need to hunt for the space dogster puts in there, remove it and then cut/paste the address I posted.

If the stuff you make is a minimum of 50% meat/egg/fish/dairy, 25% veggies - both by raw weight and 25% well cooked grain then you are half way to a good diet.

Add in 1/2 measuring teaspoon of powdered egg shell per pound of that food [more is not better] and it is nearly there>>>> *CALCIUM*.

Use about 1 ounce of liver per pound of that 50% meat/egg/fish/dairy then you are just about there>>>> *B12*+OTHER MINERALS AND VITAMINS.

Use as much variety of meats and the rest as you can. Each protein has unique amino acids, vitamins and minerals to add to the diet. Red meats like the kangaroo, beef, pork and lamb are richer in minerals and vitamins than chicken and turkey though so I prefer red meats to poultry but do feed them as well.

Use 75% meat/fish/egg/dairy to 25% veggies and it is better yet>>>> *MORE PROTEIN, MORE MINERALS, MORE VITAMINS*.

Use 15% fatty fish like mackerel/sardine/salmon/anchovy/herring and it is even better>>>> *OMEGA 3 NATURALLY*. Canned or fresh is fine.
[notify]