|Barked: Sat Apr 30, '11 7:43am PST |
|You might start with boiled chicken/no skin or fat and boiled sweet potatoes, about half and half. I would probably buy a bunch of chicken breast to start, skin and use the broth as is as it will be fairly fat free. If that works leave a little skin on the chicken and see how it goes. Then buy the cheaper whole chicken, stew and discard the skin, then leave some on. Once you have a clue as to the amount of fat tolerated then you can work on substituting other foods for either the chicken or the sweet potato. I would add in chicken hearts next. One a day, really. Since chicken is low in zinc and iron adding hearts is a really good idea. You do need heaps of them to do any good though, are other meats completely out of the picture? Once heart is a go try the liver, again in tiny bits. I froze a chunk of liver then took shavings off. One shaving might be a good starting point. You don't need much, about an ounce for each pound of meat.
Using breast meat only the recipe is about 7% fat by weight, using half breast meat only and half whole chicken and skin it is better, about 14%. With all stewed chicken and fat it is a nice 20% fat by weight. While you can only give as much as the dog can tolerate, fat is really good for dogs and 20% by weight is a good amount.
Broccoli is excellent for dogs. It might even help the sore tummy. Apples, not so much. All plant foods have carbohydrates dogs don't need but broccoli and sweet potato have lots of good stuff in them while apples don't really bring much to the menu except apples and sweet potatoes are amazing together. Yum. I suggest starting with sweet potato as it is higher in calories than broccoli. If budget is a problem then do try grains, adding a cooked ounce a day maximum so you can judge the consequences.
Kelp is good stuff but varies a great deal in nutrient levels. You do need to be concerned with overdoing it as too much iodine is very bad for the thyroid. I give Max 1/2 tsp of dried kelp a WEEK and that is a guessimate. That would be about a tablespoon of fresh I think since seaweed is about 80% water of course. You might figure out what species you are collecting and research online for its nutrient levels just for an estimate like I did. If you are using it to fertilize your garden you might want to research whether your veggies might be providing enough iodine, no seaweed required!
Left the really important nutrient for last. Calcium. My 38 pound dog needs as much calcium as I do. Easiest way is to save egg shells, dry them so they are easier to powder, powder them and add 1/2 tsp per pound of meat. If you are feeding lots of veggies then you are better off using a bone meal or dicalcium phosphate product. NOW makes a bone meal suitable for humans. Don't use a garden brand unless it has been tested for heavy metals like lead.
See how this is going to help the sore tummy? You are introducing new foods slowly and you know what you are adding. If apple bothers the tummy then easy to stop using it. If one ounce of chicken skin per chicken cooked is fine but 4 ounces of skin too much, you know what to do. Cannot do that with commercial foods!
This isn't a 'balanced' diet but it is a good start. If you use chicken only then add in a B vitamin complex. Use a human supplement and I gave Sassy a B50 but if you can find a B25 that would be more suitable. There aren't enough minerals either, very low in zinc, iron and copper. And definitely use the bone meal! I hope Pawpaw can tolerate other meats they are higher in minerals and vitamins than chicken. If you could feed beef or lamb it would be better.
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