Jump to content

Homemade dog food recipe? BalanceIT supplement?


Recommended Posts

Does anyone have a good, nutritionally balanced, homemade, dog food recipe?

Has anyone heard of Balance IT? It is a supplement, vitamin/mineral mix, designed to make homemade food nutritionally complete. On their website is a function to help you design a custom diet, indicate, in a very general way, deficiencies, and then tell you which of their supplements and how much is needed to make the recipe nutritionally complete by AAFCO standards. That function is here: https://secure.balanceit.com/ez/index.php  I came across it via a recipe on the MSPCA/Angell website. Am curious what people think.

Now here is the more detailed version. Sunita has always been a picky eater and often skipped meals. One vet described her as "runway model thin" and someone else called her "art deco" because of her very svelte figure. Think this:

art-deco-greyhound.jpg&f=1&nofb=1 or this 0

(That woman is totally not me. I'm short & fat, but a girl can dream.)

Despite that, she was always at a health weight, even if it was the lowest part of healthy.  Over the past year she has gotten pickier and pickier. She doesn't want to touch dry food and now she's just picking at canned food until she's finally so hungry she dains to eat a just enough for a stick figure dog. To be clear, she shows signs of hunger but it is not enough to overcome her pickiness. At this point, you can see all her ribs, most of her vertebrea and has prominent hip bones. I'm an advocate for keeping dogs on the thing side, but not skeletal. Right now she looks skeletal.

We are going through diagnostics with the vet to check for underlying health issues. (Her bloodwork is normal.) In the meantime, I've got to find something Little Miss Pickybutt will eat reliably. Right now that is a concoction of oatmeal, chicken and eggs with either canola or olive oil. In the short run that is healthy enough, but I need to get a balanced diet for the long term. Su is my only dog right now so homemade is doable, as long as it can be cooked in the pressure cooker. No raw. I've tried it before. It's not workable for my circumstances. And Su didn't like it. I need to get her back from stick figure dog to art deco. At the very least, I need to stop the weight loss while we figure out what's really causing this.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Edited by kudzu
Link to post
Share on other sites

The palliative care vet I was using for Lila's final months was totally supportive of a home cooked diet for her and recommended the BalanceIT site to me. We were not concerned with micro nutrients at that point so we didn't talk about the supplements, but she really liked the tool for putting together a balanced meal. My understanding is that if a dog eats even a very small amount of kibble and not even every day, they will have enough of those nutrients.

Good luck, I know how difficult a Little Miss Picky Pants can be.

Lila Football
Jerilyn, missing Lila (Good Looking), new Mistress to Wiki (PJ Wicked).
 
 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, in the short term, I'm not worried about micro nutrients. But I do feel optimistic that this will be a long term feeding project, so worth doing some research. Life is uncertain though, and one never knows with a 12 year old. :goodluck

 

3 hours ago, Jerilyn said:

... My understanding is that if a dog eats even a very small amount of kibble and not even every day, they will have enough of those nutrients.

Maybe the texture of the kibble is a problem. Makes me wonder if I could grind up some kibble to use as a mix in. Am now imaging the terrible sound of kibble whirring through the blender or food processor. That'll be a nice sound. lol 

Mixing kibble in whole has been a no go, even with "small bite" type of kibble. Have soaked kibble to get it soft and mixed it with canned food. That doesn't fly. Actually added in dry cat food with the canned dog food for a couple weeks. She will eat some, but under duress and not enough to stop weight loss. Decent canned food isn't cheap, but I happily fed that until the precious, picky, princess protested processed food. Turns out a senior Grey can be harder to please than a cat. Come to think of it, our cats act more like dogs and a couple of the Greys have been more like cats. :rolleyes: 

ETA:  Had to give it a try. Just ground up a cup of dry dog food. Yes, it was loud and not going quickly until I added water. That created a dog food slurry into which I added half a can of cat food. Placed it in Princess Picky's bowl and presented it to her Highness.  She slowly approached the bowl, stretched out her neck, gave it the sniff test, and then turned her head towards me. BF deadpans, "Well she doesn't seem enthused." Then he speaks for Su, "Where's my oatmeal?" It fit her expression so well we burst out laughing. Yet, Su crept up on the suspicious concoction, did a small lick and then proceeded to eat almost all of it. SUCCESS. Probably just a brief success, but it got another meal into her so I call it a win.

Edited by kudzu
Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been feeding my greyhounds home-made for almost 2 decades. For morning meal, they get either chicken,  turkey, hamburger, or fish (depending which dog) mixed with about 1/3 cup of veggies like green beans, carrots, or broccolli and for carbos they get white rice or oatmeal or noodles. In the morning it is usually more oatmeal and in the evening, more rice.  They get daily calcium pills along with crushed flax seeds. I also give lentils, beans, and started making a kale/greens stew. For a morning snack they get buttered toast with peanut butter on the side and in the evening, they get yogurt with either blueberries or applesauce.

Link to post
Share on other sites

My friend cooks chicken necks in a slow cooker for 24 hours, then mashes it up. She adds cooked brown rice, cooked carrots, cooked green beans, and oatmeal, all mashed together. She adds it to kibble. You could try adding the mix to your kibble slurry.

I tried my hand at it. Slow cooked the chicken necks (about 3 pounds) for 24 hours, used an imersion blender to mash it up. Also used the imersion blender to mash the cooked carrots and green beans. Mixed the mashed necks, mashed veggies, and cooked rice (I only had white rice) together. Had no oatmeal. Added the mix to kibble each meal. Sheba likes it just fine. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks to all for your comments. The joyous news is she is still eating well with the mix of homemade food & ground up kibble. Am surprised & very, very pleased about that.

Am playing with proportions based recipe from the tool on the BalanceIT site. Have added sardines to the homemade recipe. And next try will be spinach, but not yet. Will give her another week without that in hopes of keeping her eating well before doing that. I like the chicken necks idea to get some more calcium & cartilage into her. That would be a good add in. Will later add other veggies, one at a time, to test her tolerance. Su seems to think of herself as an obligate carnivore. So far oatmeal is the only carb she likes, but really mushy rice can be swapped out sometimes. I know this from prior experience over the years.

If her eating continues on homemade, I will probably order the BalanceIT vitamins. That would be after a discussion of diet with the vet.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm glad to hear Princess Picky is pleased with your offering. Getting a good meal into those ladies really is something to celebrate.

I found that the nice thing about feeding homemade is that it's one less shopping trip. Dog food ingredients came from the grocery store along with my food. :D

Lila Football
Jerilyn, missing Lila (Good Looking), new Mistress to Wiki (PJ Wicked).
 
 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well that didn’t last long. Sadly, the homemade honeymoon is over. Just bought a dozen assortment cans of dog food. Am hoping to entice her through novelty. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm sure you've tried everything, but a couple things that worked for Lila was a lot, and I mean a lot, of parmesan cheese. Also very effective was grated beef jerky treats sprinkled on top.

My other trick is changing how the food was presented. Food that was rejected in her bowl was suddenly acceptable when presented on a paper plate. :rolleyes: 

Lila Football
Jerilyn, missing Lila (Good Looking), new Mistress to Wiki (PJ Wicked).
 
 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

For picky eaters here I have added Composure Max. It's a white liquid, does not have to be refrigerated, and just a teaspoon or two is needed. The description will say it's for anxiety and it did help my 2 storm phobic dogs. But another GTer now refers to it as the "secret sauce" for picky eaters.

https://www.chewy.com/vetriscience-composure-max-liquid/dp/48692

I haven't had to use Dyne yet, but I do keep a bottle on hand in case an appetite stimulant is needed.

https://www.chewy.com/petag-dyne-high-calorie-liquid-dog/dp/146098

 

Charlie the iggy, Hada the podenco maneta, Georgie Girl (UMR Cordella), Lulu the podenco andaluz
Angels: Mazy (CBR Crazy Girl), Potato, my mystery ibizan girl, Allen (M's Pretty Boy), Percy (Fast But True), Mikey (Doray's Patuti), Pudge le mutt, Tessa the iggy, Possum (Apostle), Gracie (Dusty Lady), Harold (Slatex Harold), "Cousin" Simon our step-iggy, Little Dude the iggy ,Bandit (Bb Blue Jay), Niña the galgo, Wally (Allen Hogg), Thane (Pog Mo Thoine), Oliver (JJ Special Agent), Comet, & Rosie our original mutt.

tiny hada siggy.png

Link to post
Share on other sites

She was initially excited by the canned food variety but after 4 different cans, she decided she's had enough. [sigh] Though between the stretch of homemade and short run of canned again, she is looking a little less stick like. You know, I used to be strict where food was concerned. Tried to get healthy and something the dogs like, but then it was eat it or go hungry. Those days are clearly over. :lol

It feels like I've tried everything but, of course, I haven't. However, I have tried parmesan & Dyne. Su took a pass on both. Maybe she's holding out for Parmigiano Reggiano. :rolleyes: She likes some other cheeses though. It grates well, like a less dry version of parmesan.

The Composure Max is an interesting idea. I am skeptical when it comes to nutraceuticals, but the Composure chews helped several dogs. The chews were what my mom referred to as "the scary medicine". It helped their storm phobic dog and my own as well. Mentioned it to someone else & they had similar success. It didn't cure the problem but it took enough edge off their anxiety to prevent a meltdown. The liquid is definitely worth a try.

Link to post
Share on other sites

you can always try boiling an entire chicken in a pot of white rice and use extra water. it will cook faster if you quarter the chicken. just debone when the chicken is done and chop, return to soupy rice. felix lived on this- basically congee- for many months prior to his demise. it smells fantastic- human quality food. even DH was able to prepare it. it you have a pressure cooker the process will be much faster. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Aaaannnd we’re back to homemade, again. :lol  We are again at the point where BF pulls something out of the fridge & asks in all seriousness, “Is this for me or the dog?” 😁 If switching back & forth between homemade & canned, keeps her eating enough to halt the weightloss then I’m fine with throwing out an uneaten meal or three every few days. 

Am definitely going to put chicken on the grocery list. I do not like dealing with meat but I can do it in a big batch & toss some in the freezer for later. If he’s nice to me, I might even use some for BF. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
×
×
  • Create New...