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Dehydration for Dummies?!

Discuss ways to improve the quality of your dog's life and longevity through proper nutrition; a place for all of your questions and answers about feeding your pooch!

Please keep discussions fun, friendly, and helpful at all times. Non-informative posts criticizing a particular brand or another poster’s choice of food are not allowed in this Forum. References to any brand of food as "junk," "garbage," or other harsh names will be removed.

  
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Jake & Sweet- Caroline

Tricolored- Hounds for life!
 
 
Barked: Sat Mar 16, '13 8:07pm PST 
Do i have to cook food prior to dehydrating it? I have a dehydrator and want to try making dehydrated dog food for myself at home. + make home made chicken jerky and liver treats for my pups and fruit snacks for me.

Does the chcken, beef and fish i deside to dehydrate need to be cooked first? or can i dehyrate food raw?

I already know not to mix raw with cooked but i'm just a littel confused how to get started.

The dehydrator was second hand so i don't have an actual get up and go manual if you know what i mean. And i already know how to make apple and pinapple treats for me but now i wanna help the pups.

Any help in this matter would be apprciated.

Thanks big grin
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Maxwell

I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
 
 
Barked: Sat Mar 16, '13 11:09pm PST 
Isn't dried pineapple delicious? I would buy the enormous can from Smart N Final and end up with only a pint of dried pineapple. Sure tasted good though.

To kill bacteria you are supposed to cook then dehydrate. Baking made up jerky apparently doesn't work to kill anything that was in the raw meat. Never had any trouble even making raw beef into jerky for the humans though.

I have dehydrated raw and cooked and even mixed the two and dehydrated. It all works and the dogs sure like it all. After doing all that work I store the goodies in the freezer so they won't spoil. Mostly I have made training treats rather than chews.

Blend raw ground turkey with pureed sweet potato. Spread on wax paper evenly and dehydrate until top is dry, flip and carefully peel the paper off and finish drying.

Blend a variety of cooked low carb veggies and mix with either raw or cooked liver. Treat like the turkey/sweet potato jerky.

Treat raw beef liver [comes nicely sliced] like the sweet potato/turkey jerky or cook the slice and dehydrate.

If you can find long tendons, make your own tendon treats. Mine didn't fit the tray so the dogs got curved treats which they thought was an interesting version.

Remember fat doesn't dehydrate, it renders out. Trim fat and put something down to protect your dehydrator.
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Jake & Sweet- Caroline

Tricolored- Hounds for life!
 
 
Barked: Sat Mar 16, '13 11:49pm PST 
Thanks for the tips Maxwell! I'm going to try it tomorrow. That liver and sweet potato sounds like something jake will love.
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Jake & Sweet- Caroline

Tricolored- Hounds for life!
 
 
Barked: Sun Mar 17, '13 11:52pm PST 
so far so good. Except for the smell. I had been warned dehydrated organs smelled rank. But i underestimated it. From now on I will dehydrate in my garage during the day far away from my house. ** i have a detached garage.

God it smells.

I"m taking refugee under my AC unit where the air doesn't stink.

While Jake and Caroline sniff at the dehydrator.

silenced YUCK!
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Maxwell

I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
 
 
Barked: Mon Mar 18, '13 8:40am PST 
Put some cinnamon on a cookie sheet and turn the oven on for a bit. Make some caramelized onions, might blend with the organ smell better. I could only make liver cookies by putting a bit of garlic in and now I like the smell!

I forgot, I always do dehydrating in the garage so the house won't get stunk up but also more room to leave it.
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Jake & Sweet- Caroline

Tricolored- Hounds for life!
 
 
Barked: Mon Mar 18, '13 9:41pm PST 
I'm going to try it with garlic next time i make some heart and kidney with liver dehydrated.

That bark recipe you gave me was a huge hit. Sweetie and Jake love their sweet potato and ground beef bark. It's also much easier to get jake to eat his organ meat now. Even Caroline seems to love it.

This is making transitioning her over to raw a lot easier. She enjoys the beef heart jerky and beef liver strips. I"ve also found the dehydrated chicken gizzards and hearts are big hit for training. I made enough to last us a few weeks and only spent about $7 at the ethnic market. That's a huge money saver for me since any large amount of liver treats is so expensive.

Now if only i could get it to not stink ;D oh well. ..

At the moment I have spam, more apples, pineapple and lunch meat dehydrating for a backpacking excursion big grin

Is it possible to make dehydrated dog food myself at home? ** this is more a curious question. i've already stocked up on enough raw dehydrated food for the event of an emergency or in my case laziness (aka forget to take food out).
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Dreamy

Queen of my- castle.
 
 
Barked: Tue Mar 19, '13 7:48am PST 
This is something I want to get into also. We got our dehydrator a few months ago and so far we've been doing banana chips, raisins, pineapple, fruit cocktail, and pretty much any other kind of fruit lol. But I want to make some jerky for the pups eventually. Right now, it's filled to the top with grapes for raisins lol.
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Maxwell

I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
 
 
Barked: Tue Mar 19, '13 8:43am PST 
You have been busy! How do you keep the bananas from turning brown? The time I did bananas they didn't look nice so the bunny got them.

I used to dehydrate veggies to add to noodle dinners when we went back packing, worked really well but teriyaki beef jerky and pineapple are my favorites.

The dogs just loved everything. Gotta love making treats for dogs.
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Jake & Sweet- Caroline

Tricolored- Hounds for life!
 
 
Barked: Tue Mar 19, '13 12:39pm PST 
Dreamy- It's really easy. My dogs love it. and the food is healthy for them. I just store all the dehydrated stuff in the freezer since i dehydrate raw. It does take a long time though. To dehydrate all the meat i made took about 9 hours. But i have an apparent "fast" dehydrator. It's supposed to take days.

My dehydrator takes about 2 hours to dehydrate lunch meats which go great for hand food on backpacking. + i've discovered dehydrated ham sandwich meat = Bacon! It was a tasty discovery.

Do share how you get the bananas to stay a nice color if you do. I woudl like to try dehydrating those next.

I'll try cooked chicken breast this weekend and see how it goes. But so far i'm hooked Dehydrating stuff is so much fun.
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Dreamy

Queen of my- castle.
 
 
Barked: Wed Mar 20, '13 3:37am PST 
Honestly, I don't do anything to them. They don't look pretty but they still taste really good. The puppies love them too lol. They're never really brown, brown though just a bit dark. I slice them maybe a quarter inch thick (at most. Usually thinner) and run the dehydrator all day. You can pretreatment them with citric acid solution or mix equal parts lemon juice and water and soak the slices for 10 minutes before dehydrating to protect the color. It doesn't bother me some I don't do the extra work lol. I don't exactly have a fast dehydrator. Just a regular one I picked up at k-mart. Those grapes I put in yesterday are STILL dehydrating lol. I'm definately going to have to try the lunch meat. We tried hot dogs and kiebosa which turned out good lol (dogs LOVED).
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