Homemade dog food provides your pet with well-rounded nutrition, and it is particularly beneficial for canines with special dietary needs. Dogs who are overweight, underweight, suffer with with kidney disease or heart disease and dogs with liver conditions are just a few of the animals who can benefit from a homemade dog food.
This doggy meatloaf recipe is suitable for most pets, but be sure to discuss any diet changes with your veterinarian in advance – particularly your dog has a serious health condition. ALWAYS talk to your veterinarian or a trained canine nutritionist before selecting the right diet for your dog. Let them know what you plan to feed him and ask for their input on healthy variations.
If not done properly, homemade dog food diets can actually do more harm than good. Too many nutrients can cause toxicity over time, and a nutritional deficiency could leave Fido with an irreversible health problem.
In fact, a study by the Journal of the American Veterinary Association analyzed 200 homemade dog food recipes from veterinary textbooks, by board certified veterinary nutritionists, and from different pet-related websites. In the end, of the 200 recipes, only 9 met the National Research Council's requirements for a high-quality dog food!
So, don't just take my word for it. This recipe is not going to provide a nutritionally balanced meal for every dog. In order to meet your dog's needs you may need to add additional supplements or substitute some of the ingredients for a more nutrient dense option.
MORE RECIPES HERE: Homemade Dog Food & Treats Recipes
Simple & Healthy Doggy Meatloaf Recipe
- 3 cups of ground meat (I used turkey, but you could use ground chicken, beef, etc…)
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup of chopped or grated dog-friendly vegetables
- 1/2 cup cottage cheese
- 1/2 cup old fashioned oats
Preheat your oven to 400°. In my video guide I misspoke and said to preheat to 200°, but it actually needs to be 400°.
In a medium-sized mixing, combine all of the ingredients. You're going to need to get your hands dirty for this one. Just add all of the ingredients to the bowl and use your hands to mix it all together.
As you'll see in the video guide above, I used beets and carrots in my meatloaf recipe. You could substitute other fruits or vegetables that are dog-friendly if you want to. You may want to try:
Once all of your ingredients are thoroughly combined, press the mixture into a loaf pan. Bake in your 400° oven for about 80 minutes. You'll notice that the loaf turns a golden brown color on the top when it's thoroughly cooked. You could also use a meat thermometer to ensure that it's cooked to the proper temperature, depending on the protein source that you used.
Once the doggy meatloaf has cooled, you can serve it to your pooch. The recommended serving size is 1/2 cup of meatloaf per 20 pounds of body weight. So, if your dog weighs 80 pounds, he should be eating 2 cups of meatloaf per day split between at least 2 meals.
You can store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. You can also freeze these doggy meatloaves (cooked or uncooked) for up to 3 months. They are great to make in advance and just take out of the freezer when you need them.
READ NEXT: 50 Best Homemade Dog Food Recipes