Why You Should Feed Your Dog Homemade Food

For many years, people have fed their dogs homemade food. However, this doesn't mean simply feeding them leftovers, or sharing your dinner with them.
Why You Should Feed Your Dog Homemade Food
Francisco María García

Written and verified by the lawyer Francisco María García.

Last update: 27 December, 2022

For many years, people have fed their dogs homemade food. However, this doesn’t mean simply feeding them leftovers, or sharing your dinner with them. Dogs are naturally omnivorous animals, and require a tasty, balanced diet that meets all their nutritional needs.

It’s important to remember that animals can get bored of eating the same food day after day, just like we would. Over time, their food gradually becomes less and less appealing.

The canine diet

A lady feeding a dog.

The idea is to add variety, rather than simply sticking to dry dog food. That way, your dog will eat because it wants to, not because it has to.

No one can deny that good pelleted dog foods are packed full of nutrients. They’re also very practical for busy owners, making their lives much easier. However, these foods aren’t the only option when it comes to feeding your four-legged friend, nor are they necessarily the best option. This is why it’s important to consider other items on the menu.

Some great examples of alternative dog food include chicken breast, beef, and certain types of fish. These meats should be unsalted, and don’t need any additional sauce or seasoning.

Healthy, natural, homemade food

Just like people, dogs that eat a more natural diet long-term have been found to feel better, have a healthier coat, and are usually healthier in general than dogs that eat processed foods.

A healthy diet also helps to strengthen the immune system. 

The idea that dogs can’t eat fish is actually a myth. Fish contains many healthy proteins, unsaturated fats, and other elements such as Omega. Salmon, tuna, and tilapia are some of the best options.

The ideal homemade canine diet is a sort of “cake” made up of a source of protein, along with rice or pasta cooked in olive oil. You can then add vegetables such as carrot, spinach, and beans.

Fruit is also a good snack option, which you can give your dog around once a day. Depending on your dog’s own personal taste, you could give them things such as apple, banana, papaya, and some citrus fruits. However, some fruits are unsuitable for our canine friends, such as grapes.

Dogs and leftovers

Feeding your dog leftovers and scraps of human food is really just feeding it empty calories. A dog that isn’t eating a balanced diet is more likely to beg for scraps, looking for vital vitamins and nutrients that its body is lacking.

It’s also important to remember that obesity can cause many chronic health problems if left untreated.

Combining dry food and homemade food

Anyone who decides to bring a dog into their lives wants to feed it the best diet possible. This involves choosing a high-quality pellet food, as well as offering homemade food that you would almost want to eat yourself.

If you want to feed your dog a 100% homemade diet, you first need to seek advice from a canine nutritionist. By not doing so, you risk feeding your dog an imbalanced diet which doesn’t give it the nutrition it needs. It’s far easier to meet these needs by feeding them commercial dog foods which have been specially designed for your four-legged friend.

Combining both homemade and commercial dog food is a popular solution. After all, just because your dog doesn’t eat 100% homemade food, doesn’t mean that this food can’t make up part of its diet.

However, because commercial food is designed to be digested slowly, the benefits of homemade food can almost be canceled out. This mixture can cause digestive issues, creating an imbalance in the gut flora that causes them to produce excessive amounts of gas.

So, what’s the solution? It’s all about proportions. If you want to feed your dog a mixture of homemade and commercial dog food, the homemade food should only make up about 5% of their diet.

Commercial dog food brands

A bowl of dog biscuits.

The nutritional content and quality of commercial dog food can vary from one product to another. It’s important to pay attention to the ingredients that manufacturers use. If there is no detailed information about the ingredients on the packet, it’s probably best to avoid it.

You should always choose a brand that tells you exactly what you’re feeding your dog. You can also find organic food in many pet stores. That way, you can be sure your dog’s food is free from pesticides and other toxic substances.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.