May 12

Cooking for Your Pet

You asked: I would love to know more about how to feed my dog unprocessed or minimally processed food. I’d like a guideline for calorie-density and appropriate volume, balanced sources of protein. What is the importance of variety of nutrition sources? For example, hard cooked or scrambled chicken eggs, salmon, red meat? What grains might be appropriate? Oatmeal? Rice? Corn? Thank you! 

dog and cat cooking

Dr Schultz answered: We all want to provide healthy food for our pets. We all know that eating a healthy diet is important to good health. For a variety of reasons, some pet owners wish to prepare their pets’ food at home. Preparing a diet that provides complete and balanced nutrition for your pet can be harder than it sounds!  The cost of cooking a diet at home is generally higher than feeding a commercial diet and significantly time consuming. If you wish to make the commitment to preparing a home cooked diet, it is essential to have a recipe formulated with the guidance of a veterinary nutritionist. A veterinary nutritionist can formulate a diet recipe taking into account specific requirements due any medical conditions or allergies as well any goals such as weight loss. The recipe must then be strictly adhered to, with no substitutions in order to provide consistently balanced and complete nutrition. Good resources include a nutritional consulting service called, or  Several veterinary universities offer nutritional consulting services.

A great source of information regarding pet nutrition and selecting diets is a blog called Petfoodology written by veterinary nutritional specialists at the Tufts School of Veterinary Medicine.

Kim Schultz

Dr. Schultz graduated from Cornell University in 1997 and joined Friendship in 2004. Dr. Schultz enjoys helping people and their pets in a direct way. Her professional interests include emergency medicine and general practice.

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