I have been making my own dog food for several years. I thought they were doing well. No health issues, excellent skin/coat, nice stools, etc.
The other day while my long coat German Shepherd was laying on the floor upside down, i noticed on his elbows two HUGE bald spots. I mean i can’t believe how big they are, it covers the entire elbow!! I just gave baths today and noticed another one on one hip, this one is only about the size of a quarter.
i’m wondering if it is a zinc deficiency. (looked online and saw that might be the problem). Now i am finding this stuff about not using rice. i’m wondering if i am using too much rice.
Here is their diet: i buy organ beef mix from a dog food distributor. it is just that; beef and organ meat mix.
I make a pot of 2 cups rice, 1 cup oatmeal, 1 cup ground vegetables (any scraps that i have accummulated or off the shelf fresh vegetables) 1/3 cup vegetable oil and i cook that in a pot. i add that mix to 5 pounds of the raw meat. i divide it up and feed it in the morning (each dog – german shepherd) gets two cups of the mix with a NuVet supplement; and a tsp of garlic.
In the evening they each get a raw chicken leg (from the regular grocery store).
Like i said, i’ve been doing this mix for approximately 7 years without a problem. Any thoughts, concerns? i’m so confused that i feel like going back to kibble!!
There are a few things that your recipe can be deficient in. Making homemade food is great, if you make sure it is balanced or if you change recipes often so that you balance over time. But if you keep feeding the same unbalances recipe, day in and day out, that can mean much bigger problems than loss of hair at pressure points.
You need a wider variety of recipes. Look for Steve Brown’s book “Unlocking the Canine Ancestral Diet” and Dr Karen Becker’s book “Real Food for Healthy Dogs and Cats” to learn more about balancing a diet and for more recipes.
Pauline: I have a 70 pound GSD too. Have never given him bones. Q: Do you just put a chicken leg in your dog’s bowl at suppertime and let HIM chew it up? Does he really CHEW UP THE BONE? I have been scared to do that. What can you tell me about it? I’m afraid of puncturing the intestines. That might be stupid. Thank you for what you can say.
While I don’t any longer have dogs that big, I used to have GSDs, so I can be of some help here. The first few times you give bones you absolutely want to make sure that they are too big for him to just swallow or crunch, crunch swallow. Dogs that aren’t used to bones have a learning curve. They are used to wolfing their food down as fast as possible, so they have to learn that they have to chew it up. Give something like a whole leg quarter or a whole turkey neck. Some dogs have to have their raw pieces held at first, or have it attached to something that will cause them to slow down.
I think your homemade dog food is amazing.
About Your dog’s bald spot is not because of food.
Due to some kind of viruses or something.
So… Why don’t you try “cooked ” food not raw sometimes?
When your dogs power of resistance is low,your dog will delighted by warm food 🙂
Another thing to consider is that sometimes larger dogs develop bald spots and elbow patches from the weight placed on those areas when they lie down. Hard surfaces are worse than soft surfaces.
Sounds to me like Kennel sores.. Whenever a dog is lying, they are putting a lot of pressure on certain points of their body such as elbows etc. The hair tends to fall out on such areas. Sounds to me that you are doing the right thing by making your own food, which is what I also do. But I would suggest removing all grains from your home cooked food and supplement them with lentils and beans for fibre. Also purchase coconut oil and rub it daily on the areas of your GSD that is rough. Coconut oil is also great to add to your home cooked dog food. If anyone is interested in my recipe, I’d be glad to share it with you all.
If there are any wholesome, balanced cooked food recipes out there, I’d love to see them. I’m sure there needs to be a calcium and multi supplement.
I make a homemade dog food, but I don’t really have a recipe, I use what ever ground meat, veggies and fruits are on sale, but here is what I do;
70% meat/mixed with organ meat
2lbs lean ground beef
1lb ground chicken
1lb ground turkey
1/2lb beef liver, chicken livers, or chicken giblets
Brown all meat in coconut oil, let cool
Steam the following veggies, fresh is best if you have them on hand, or you can use
frozen veggies (just make sure there is no corn, onions or mushrooms in the frozen blend)
Sliced Carrots (they don’t have to be peeled)
Red Bell Peppers -chopped
Add the steamed veggies to the cooled meat
Then add to the meat mixture;
1 Apple, peeled, cored and chopped
1 Banana, chopped
2 raw eggs, shell and all
1/2 tsp chopped garlic
1 Tbsp Coconut oil
1 Tbsp Vitamin fatty acid supplement, such as Dr. Maggie
Using a potato masher, mash all the ingredients together as much as
possible. Then transfer to a food processor to blend, or if you have
a hand emulsifier blender you can mix it together
Make sure to blend evenly leaving no big chunks
Put approx. 11-12 oz into Ziploc freezer bags and freeze
I take out only 1 bag as I need it and let defrost in the fridge
- This reply was modified 4 years, 8 months ago by Angela H.
Wow! Thank you Angela. That’s exactly what I’ve been looking for. You didn’t leave out any details and I’m grateful for that especially the wide variety that you can pick and choose from. My Toby has allergies to sweet potatoes, peas, salmon, and kale, and so the vast other ingredients to pick from was exactly what I’ve been searching for. Thank you again. Sounds delicious 🙂
Hi, would you recommend your recipe for a giant breed saint benard pupp ?
I would suggest you use the same recipe that I had posted but up the meat to 80%, and try to find a source of ground bone and marrow
Okay that sound good for me, im actually excited to hook my boy up with his first home recipe meal. He’s going to go nuts I bet, I can see him now acting his age not his size lol. I just hope, I’ll be able to alternate between that and a 4-5 star kibble (going to alternate away from nature variety instinct which is a little to much $ for me at the moment), and my buget would limit homemade meals to 4-6 meals a week. Is it even a good idea to alternate ? I am also concerned about his eating habits/health in the long run, and would ultimately do what’s necessary to ensure he doesn’t wind up with any health issues that the Saint Benard breeds tend to develop (possibly from mild/lack of proper nutrition) if not well taken care of.
Thanks alot for your help.
Hey Pluto-not sure how old your pup is but because it’s a larger dog you may want to look into the 90-93% if you are feeding raw. I would feed raw and kibble at separate meals if you are new to it.
I make my own dog food for Mickey, my 11 pound terrier mix that I adopted about a month ago. He goes absolutely wild at meal time and eats every bit -actually gobbles it down. I’m wondering if he’s getting enough calories. I feed him 3/4 cup of food at each meal twice a day.
For some odd reason I can’t seem to paste the recipe onto this post. What am I doing wrong?
I’m copying from my notes on my iPad and pasting it to this post on my iPad.
Going to try it the long way here’s my recipe for dog food:
2 1/2 pounds ground beef/chicken/mix
1/2 lb. assorted giblets/organ meats
1/4 cup coconut or olive oil
3 hard-boiled eggs chopped
3 tablespoons flaxseed
1/2. Cup wheat germ
1 cup rolled oats
2 cups cooked rice
2 cups homemade chicken or beef broth
1 cup grated carrots, finely chopped spinach, chopped green beans, and peas
1/2 cup pure puréed pumpkin
3 tablespoons ground egg shell powder
1 cup chopped cranberries and apples
1 cup cottage cheese
You can cook each item separately as you go or place everything into a casserole dish and bake at 350° for one hour. I add 3 tablespoons of homemade chicken or beef broth to each dish at each meal.
I think the meals listed are great , ……. I would drop the rice 100% , & Gloria’s dish should be able to cook from raw in 1 hour with a lid on it at 350. Also things like peas with a very short cooking time could be add near the end & the cottage cheese could be a topper ( cold ). I think we have many good cooks here! PS I think I need to start a new thread on cottage cheese !!
Curious as to why drop the rice. It seems to be a required ingredient in almost all recipes I’ve seen for homemade dog food. I now add the cottage cheese as a topper – 1 tablespoon every morning. Mickey inhales this mixture.
- This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by Gloria K.
Rice is an ingredient in most recipes because it is cheap calories. If your dog doesn’t have issues with the amount of carbs in your recipe, then you don’t have to worry about the rice. Many of us like to feed our dogs closer to what a carnivore would eat because dogs have a definite carnivorous bias, and many of us seem to have dogs, like one of mine, that just doesn’t do well at all on so high a carb diet.
Where did you get your recipe?
Your answer makes sense. I don’t think dogs need a lot of carbs to begin with so I really could cut the rice in half. I got the recipe from a veterinary nutritionalist Wish I could remember her name.
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