My Top 5 Ingredients For Homemade Dog Food
Nala is our puppy girl and she came into our lives a few months after we moved to St. Croix. It was around this time, after getting acclimated into our new home, that I mentioned to J that I thought we were ready for a fur baby. It was just days later when we rescued an emaciated, flea-ridden stray from a fierce thunderstorm in the rainforest. It was meant to be. It’s only now that I understand those bumper stickers that read “who rescued who?” Needless to say, nothing is too good for our little angel and a big part of that is her food. Her diet mirrors ours in that she gets whole foods that are as natural or organic and local as possible. Of course, these foods were all approved by her vet and she highly encourages such superfoods for our pup. Her “menu” always changes depending on what kind of protein we can locally source but I pretty much always include the following list of ingredients and here’s why.
Pumpkin or Sweet Potato
Low in fiber, pumpkin is exceptionally high in carotenoids, potassium and vitamin C and help to maintain a healthy digestive tract. Sweet potatoes are a great source of beta-carotene and heart healthy Vitamin A.
An example of what I may give her is kale which is abundant in vitamins A, E, and C. This green superfood also helps to detoxify the liver and keeps things regular with fiber.
Quinoa is easy to digest while being a complete plant based source of protein supplying all eight of the essential amino acids. It is also shown to reduce the risk of diabetes.
Coconuts or Blueberries
If Nala could speak, she would probably go on and on about coconut. There is no lack of fresh coco’s where we live and Nala couldn’t be happier about that. Her absolute favorite part is the meat. Young or mature, she doesn’t discriminate and though she enjoys it plain as a treat, I also mix it up for homemade coconut milk to soak chia seeds or quinoa flakes in. A scoop or so of coconut oil is also good for dog food. It’s a great source of healthy fat and helps to improve the absorption of vitamins, minerals and nutrients. Blueberries are a good source of antioxidants and phytochemicals.
Parsley is great for freshening your pooches breath and also contains flavonoids, lycopene, carotenes and potassium. Holy basil/tulsi is said to be great for treating ringworm and I give it to Nala for its antioxidant, antiviral, and antimicrobial properties.
I also like to mix things up with turmeric, flax, carrots, apples, etc. Nala does best with a well-rounded diet of meat and veggies. It’s what we’ve fed her since the beginning and she gets A+ reports from the vet and has great, sustained stamina and energy.
When treating Nala for good behavior, she [again] goes crazy for coconut. Raw apples, carrots, broccoli, frozen bananas and these peanut butter truffles are a few other treats she enjoys.