It dawned on me that in my never ending quest to get families to eat healthy, I have overlooked a very important family member: our pets. This was recently brought to my attention by one of my favorite clients, who like myself, is a huge dog lover. Her and I both agree that our dogs are sometimes the sanest member of the family. They comfort us without judging us, they’re always happy to see us no matter what we do, and they love us despite all of our flaws. So shouldn’t we be doing everything possible to make sure they live a long and healthy life?

    I know we all think this, but my dog was the best. I had to put her down last June although it feels like it just happened last month. She was my best friend. I use to call her my shadow because she would follow me everywhere. So for nearly a year now I have been walking around my house with this feeling that something is missing. What I wouldn’t give to trip over her one more time.

    I was very blessed to have had Deja (an Australian Sheppard mix) for 16 years which for dogs is pretty awesome. If she was human she’d be like an Okinawan senior in Japan. I attribute her health and long life to the fact that I stopped feeding her commercial dog food. Around age 8, she got very sick with kidney and digestive issues and after much research, I learned that commercial dog food is crap. It does not provide our dogs with the nutrition they need and it’s made with unhealthy and toxic ingredients. I began making her food myself with what most people consider people food. Um, newsflash—humans and dogs should be eating the same type of foods. Whole foods. Non-processed foods from the soil, ocean, and animals. It’s really that simple. If you want to learn more about the hazards of commercial dog food and natural ways to keep your pet healthy, check out Dr. B, the holistic veterinarian.

    So I wanted to share my raw food recipe that I used to feed my dog for the last 8 years of her life. It kept her active and better yet saved me money from never having to take her to the vet. Thanks “A” for making the request for this recipe which I never thought about posting before. I know those of you reading this truly love your dogs just as much as I love my pooch. Spend the extra time and effort. It’s totally worth it.

    Raw Dog Food Recipe

    • 1 lb. ground lean turkey, beef, or chicken
    • 4- 6 cups of pulverized fruit/vegetable (you can blend together fresh or frozen fruits and veggies; or if you juice, save the leftover pulp by storing it in the freezer; leave the skin on; if using Apples, REMOVE the SEEDS)
    • 1 can of pumpkin, yams, or squash (puree is fine too)
    • 3 tablespoons Brewer’s yeast
    • Probiotic (optional)
    • 4 tbsp. of ground flaxseed
    • ¼ cup of safflower (cod liver oil even better)
    • 3-4 raw eggs

    In a food processor, blend the fruits and vegetables into a fine pulp or puree. Add meat and blend until mixed. Add in remaining ingredients and mix until all ingredients are blended. Using a measuring cup, fill up 1cup with meat mixture and form into ball. Place ball on a cookie sheet. Should make 14 – 18 meat/veggie balls. You will put the cookie sheet in the freezer uncovered to flash freeze the meat/veggie balls. Should take no longer than 4 hrs. Place frozen meat balls in an airtight container and store in the freezer until needed. You can defrost a meat ball in the refrigerator overnight to feed your dog in the morning.

    Benefits of a Whole Food Raw Diet

    1. Raw meat – is a great source of protein. Unlike humans, dogs are able to safely consume raw meat. It is actually easier for them to breakdown raw meat versus cooked meat which requires some work.
    2. Eggs – are whole foods rich in minerals, essential fatty acids, and a great source or protein. Dogs are able to handle the salmonella bacteria in raw eggs so don’t worry.
    3. Fruits & Vegetables – a great source of vitamins, enzymes, phytochemicals, and fiber. Will help your dog with energy production, digestion, and healthy bowels. This is especially good for dogs who have loose or runny bowels. I use the leftover pulp from my juicing but you can also just blend up your own mixture. Use different variations of apples, bananas, berries, carrots, kale, spinach, beets, cucumber, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, and squash. No grapes or raisins.
    4. Brewer’s Yeast – rich in Omega fatty acids, B vitamins, and helps to strengthen your dog’s immune system. It has also been shown to repel fleas, ticks, and biting flies; something about the yeast in the blood that is a turn-off to these insects.
    5. Probiotic – does the same for dogs as it does for humans; helps them to maintain a healthy digestive tract and combat any bad bacteria in their gut.
    6. Flax Seed, Cod Liver Oil, & Safflower – these oils will provide your dog with the essential fatty acids (Omega 3, 6, 9) needed for healthy skin, fur, and joints. These oils are especially helpful for older dogs with inflammation in the hind legs or other areas. If your dog suffers from inflammation, use a combination of the flax seed and cod liver oil.
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