I’m an earnest farm wench secure in my delusion that the cows, chickens, bees and turkeys here appreciate my singing.
I bake, cook and preserve with exuberant excess and sometimes with the help of recipes. I consider kitchen arts a pleasure so long as a man offers to clean up. Fortunately I have such a man in training (thus far a decades-long process).
I’m also a writer. I draw mantras on my feet with markers, inscribe poems on beehives and paint words on mannequins. I make my living writing on more conventional surfaces. My book Free Range Learning is published by Hohm Press(2010).
I have three dogs, all grain intolerant, particularly to wheat and corn (skin rashes, digestive issues, etc.) I think it’s odd to include such a vast amount of starch and vegetable matter to a dog’s diet. Their ancestors in the wild certainly didn’t eat starches. They did eat some vegetables, the partially digested kinds found in the stomachs of their prey. And they didn’t eat meats cooked, which preserved the enzymes.
Our solution here? Raw meats when possible, bones on occasion, some vegetable scraps, and no starches. We keep all the ingredients separate. Separate is important, rather than a slurry. Our small dogs eat liver happily the first day, but self- regulate and don’t eat it more than once in three days, presumably because the nutrient levels are too high and would overload their systems. One dog here loves broccoli, another vomits after eating it, something that separate food offerings have solved. It may seem funny to put down dog food on a plate, but it works for us. Our dogs are healthy, ages 4 to nearly 14.
To the question about finding pumpkin and sweet potato flour. We get ours through a food co-op so getting it isn’t all that expensive. It’s also pretty easy to make if you have a food dehydrator, simply thinly slice either pumpkin or sweet potato, then run the dehydrator until the pieces are very dry and crumbly. Grind in a blender or with a mortar and pestle. It keeps quite a while. You can replace the flours mentioned in the Doggie Squares with ground flax too!
Can’t you change the tags on this to “grain free dog treats,” as suggested in other comments? I only found this via a link on a forum for canine health problems. My two pugs have been really sick thanks to corn and wheat in the top-of-the-line dog food I’d been buying directly from the vet’s office. Within a week of switching them to real meat, bones, and a few steamed veggies, they no longer have skin problems, digestive problems, or immune system dysfunction. They’re off meds and have more energy than we’ve ever seen. I’m thrilled to see recipes and other suggestions for treats but honestly, finding this article was just luck. Re-tag!
Thank you! I have been so frustrated by the junk out there for dogs. Buying beef heart right from my butcher turned out to be really cheap. Next time he’s going to order me a bunch in bulk and I’m planning to get together with some friends, slice up jerky, drink some beers, watch all our dogs play, and send everyone home with lots of jerky. I’m calling it a Jerky Party.
Really glad to stumble on this. Wish it had been titled “grain free dog treats” because that’s what is really hard to find online. The suggestion to save scraps to use for dog treats is particularly helpful. I have two Great Danes. Friends keep ziploc bags in their freezers to put in cut-offs cooked or raw, from meat. It really helps me have treats and healthy morsels to mix in their food. I’m eager to try these recipes. THANKS!
The research is somewhat nonsensical. It’s easy to reach 2,000 calories a day cheaply on junk food if we’re talking a jumbo bag of chips and a two liter bottle of soda. It’s hard to reach 2,000 calories a day on nutrient dense, healthful foods such as organic salad, free range chicken, and pomegranate juice. How cheaply one can reach 2,000 calories doesn’t take health, ethics, or taste into consideration.
Breakfast: a smoothie made with frozen banana, hemp seeds, low fat coconut milk and vanilla extract.
Lunch: a spoonful of crunchy peanut butter and a glass of raw milk.
Dinner: broccoli fresh from the garden, new potatoes newly dug, some raw cheddar and two glasses of org merlot.
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