Cooking for your dog: what you need to know – Society

There are several options for feeding your dog. In addition to the commercially available cereals, pâtés and ready meals, you can of course start your own. But be careful, don’t do anything about it!

First some notes: a dog is not an omnivore like humans, but an opportunistic carnivore that has adapted to life as a pet. Its diet does not necessarily have to consist of 100% meat – the dog is able to digest the starch in starchy foods and certain vegetables – but it should always contain more protein than human food. Giving the leftovers from your meal to your dog is therefore not a good idea. If you want to serve your dog home-cooked food, you must prepare specific dishes for him!

If you want to feed your four-legged friend home-made food, it is in any case advisable to gradually include this in the diet and seek advice from the vet in advance. General advice does not apply to all dogs. Sometimes specific adjustments or restrictions are needed. It is also good to provide some variety in the diet, for example to alternate quality grains (or pâtés) and ready meals.

Get started yourself

With this in mind, what should you use when preparing a meal for your dog(s)? For a long time, the 30% rule applied (30% animal protein/30% vegetables/30% starchy products). Meanwhile, the proportion of meat or fish has increased: a balanced dog ration contains 40 to 50% animal proteins or even more. To this you must add approximately 30% vegetables, 15% starch and a little fat, if possible a vegetable oil with a good balance between omega 3 and 6, such as rapeseed oil, and possibly minerals and vitamins. And just like for humans, it’s not a good idea to cook the same thing over and over again: you need to vary the ingredients to cover the nutritional needs as much as possible.

Most starchy foods (peeled(!) potatoes, quinoa, buckwheat, pasta, rice, etc.) and common vegetables (zucchini, squash, cucumbers, lettuce, spinach, fennel, green beans, peas, carrots, etc.) on the menu. Cabbage is not always well tolerated because it sometimes tends to ferment in the gut, causing gas. Spices, asparagus, artichokes, mushrooms, onions, garlic or aubergines should be avoided at all costs.

How much?

To preserve as many nutrients as possible, the food should be simmered but not boiled (10 to 15 minutes at 80° is usually sufficient). Vegetable oil should only be added at the last minute, so as not to break down the essential fatty acids. Cook the vegetables and the starch together with the meat so that they absorb the juices. And to simplify your life, don’t hesitate to cook large quantities and freeze them in individual portions. All you have to do later is thaw them in the fridge 24 hours before use.

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A final, thornier question remains: what about the quantities? These vary depending on many factors: the size and weight of the dog, but also its activity (is it a young playful dog or a calm older dog?), is the animal sterilized or not, does it have any health problems. The general rule is that you should feed 30 to 40 g of food per day. kg body weight per day. A dog weighing 15 kilos therefore theoretically needs a daily ration of 450 to 600 grams. But again, it’s better to get advice from a professional before going into the kitchen! Another option: On the free site www.dogocook.com you can find tailor-made recipes, with the quantities and procedure to follow, depending on the feed you have at home and your dog’s profile.

First some notes: a dog is not an omnivore like humans, but an opportunistic carnivore that has adapted to life as a pet. Its diet does not necessarily have to consist of 100% meat – the dog is able to digest the starch in starchy foods and certain vegetables – but it should always contain more protein than human food. Giving the leftovers from your meal to your dog is therefore not a good idea. If you want to serve your dog home-made food, then you must prepare specific dishes for him! If you want to feed your four-legged friend home-made food, it is in any case advisable to gradually include this in the diet and take advice in advance from the vet. General advice does not apply to all dogs. Sometimes specific adjustments or restrictions are needed. It is also good to provide some variety in the diet, and for example to alternate quality kernels (or pâtés) and ready meals.. With this in mind, what is the best use when preparing a meal for yourself dog(s) ? For a long time, the 30% rule applied (30% animal protein/30% vegetables/30% starchy products). Meanwhile, the proportion of meat or fish has increased: a balanced dog ration contains 40 to 50% animal proteins or even more. To this you must add approximately 30% vegetables, 15% starch and a little fat, if possible a vegetable oil with a good balance between omega 3 and 6, such as rapeseed oil, and possibly minerals and vitamins. And just like humans, it’s not a good idea to cook the same thing over and over again: make sure you rotate the ingredients to maximize your nutritional needs Most starchy foods (peeled(!) potatoes, quinoa, buckwheat, pasta, rice, etc. .) and regular vegetables (zucchini, squash, cucumbers, lettuce, spinach, fennel, green beans, peas, carrots, etc.) must definitely be on the menu. Cabbage is not always well tolerated because it sometimes tends to ferment in the gut, causing gas. Spices, asparagus, artichokes, mushrooms, onions, garlic or aubergines should be avoided at all costs. To preserve as much nutrition as possible, the food should be simmered but not boiled (10 to 15 minutes at 80° is usually sufficient). Vegetable oil should only be added at the last minute, so as not to break down the essential fatty acids. Cook the vegetables and the starch together with the meat so that they absorb the juices. And to simplify your life, don’t hesitate to cook large quantities and freeze them in individual portions. All you have to do later is thaw them in the fridge 24 hours before use. A final, more thorny question: what about the quantities? These vary depending on many factors: the size and weight of the dog, but also its activity (is it a young playful dog or a calm older dog?), is the animal sterilized or not, does it have any health problems. The general rule is that you should feed 30 to 40 g of food per day. kg body weight per day. A dog weighing 15 kilos therefore theoretically needs a daily ration of 450 to 600 grams. But again, it’s better to get advice from a professional before going into the kitchen! Another option: On the free site www.dogocook.com you can find tailor-made recipes, with the quantities and procedure to follow, depending on the feed you have at home and your dog’s profile.

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