HOMEMADE DOG FOOD

Canine Health and Nutrition Information from Dr Ken Tudor.

Is Tumeric or Curcumin Good for Dogs?

Ken Tudor - Thursday, March 03, 2016

Relieve Allergies and Arthritic PainIf you are not giving your dog curcumin, you are missing an opportunity to treat allergies, arthritic pain and prevent cancer in your dog. This natural product has been extensively researched and the evidence is overwhelming. It works.

 
What is Curcumin?
 
Curcumin is the active ingredient in turmeric or curry seasoning. It is a proven anti-inflammatory substance that decreases joint pain in the same manner as Rimadyl, a popular veterinary arthritis product. It decreases itching for dogs with environmental and food allergies. Curcumin also has cancer fighting activity. Medical data from countries that eat a lot of curry show that these individuals suffer a much lower incidence of colorectal and prostatic cancer than western cultures. It is a common recommended nutritional supplement in holistic veterinary practices.
 
But the spice, turmeric, is not as effective. Tumeric only contains 2-5% curcumin. It is virtually impossible to add enough turmeric to your dog’s diet to achieve an effective dose. Dogs need a concentrated source of curcumin for maximum effect. Fortunately, these products are available.
 
If your veterinarian does not have a dose of curcumin for your dog, contact a holistic veterinarian in your area for a consult and proper the dose for your dog. You will be amazed in the difference it makes to their health.

 

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Avoid 5 Problems Caused by Omega-6 Shortage in Your Dog's Diet

Ken Tudor - Thursday, February 11, 2016

Is Omega-6 Fat Important in Your Dog's DietYou have heard a lot about omega-3 fats and how important they are in our diet. Well, they are important in dogs’ diets as well. Omega-3 fats calm dogs’ red, itchy skin and relieve joint pain in arthritic dogs. You probably also know that omega-3’s even improve learning in young puppies and decrease the symptoms of old age dementia and improve heart function in senior dogs. But these positive effects require only small amounts of omega-3 fats in the diet. Dogs actually need 8 times more omega-6 fats than omega-3 in their daily diet.  Read more...

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How Long Should You Cook Meat for Homemade Dog Food?

Ken Tudor - Thursday, February 04, 2016

Monitor meat temperature to make sure you are creating a "bacteria safe" meal.Cooking meat for homemade dog food has two advantages over using raw meats.

 
1) Cooking meat kills bacteria. Meat can become contaminated by bacteria in the following ways:
 
a) The animals may harbor bacteria before being slaughtered
b) During processing at the slaughterhouse
c) During transportation to the store or butcher
d) During cutting, packaging and storing by the butcher
e) During storage and preparation in our kitchen
 
2) Cooking makes meat more digestible. Despite what you may have heard or read, raw meat is not more digestible than cooked meat. Gentle cooking breaks chemical bonds and increases the digestibility of the amino acids from meats so they are more readily absorbed from the intestines. Much of the protein in raw meat is passed in dog poop, undigested. Undigested protein also encourages the growth of gas producing bacteria in the colon.
 
But you can over cook meat and decrease its quality. Meat only needs to be heated to an internal temperature of 170o F to kill bacteria. No matter how you cook the meat for your homemade dog food, a meat thermometer can tell you what the temperature is in the middle of meat cut. For fried, ground meats, complete browning is a good indication of reaching the correct internal temperature.
 
Don’t rely on cooking times recommended in your cook books or recipes. Monitor the temperature so you are creating a “bacteria-safe” meal without destroying the quality of the protein.

 

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Is Your Dog Food Good? Look at Your Dog’s Poo

Ken Tudor - Thursday, January 28, 2016

Dog poop can tell you a lot about dietFor 33 years I have amazed my veterinary clients with what they think are my psyche powers. Dog owners will tell me they feed a certain, popular brand of premium pet food. And I will make an off-hand reply that their dog probably makes stools nearly as large as elephant stool. If it is a cat I will tell them the size of the stool is probably the length of a cigar. Amazed, every client (no exceptions in 33 years) will say “how did you know?” My answer is always the same, “I know the food.” This food brand, despite the company’s astronomical advertising budget, is a low quality food and the proof is in the poop.

 
High quality dog food is highly digestible. That means that the ingredients are easily broken down by digestive juices and the nutrients are readily absorbed from the intestines into the blood stream. That leaves very little undigested and non-absorbed food. That means small to moderate amounts of poop. The only thing that came out of your dog was the part of the diet that could not be digested.
 
But this undigested food is important. It feeds the good bacteria in the colon that promotes a healthy gut and healthy internal immune system. Every diet needs a certain portion of undigested material that produces your dog’s poop.
 
But a large amount of poop means that too much of the diet is indigestible. Most of the ingredients in the food are passing right through your dog and adding no value to its nutrition. In fact, indigestible protein, which is common in commercial dog food, actually is food for “bad gut bacteria” and is the cause of farting in many breeds of dogs. You are spending a good deal of money on this premium food and those dollars are passing out of your dog’s anus. To add insult to injury you are scooping up those dollars from the yard and throwing them into the trash can. Talk about flushing money down the toilet!
 
So how do you know your selection on dog food is good? How much stool does your dog make? That is the key question to evaluate any dog food. Our customers at Hearthstone Homemade report that their dogs make very little poop and generally only once a day. And that is because good quality homemade dog food is far more digestible than most popular commercial dog foods.
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Are Preservatives Harmful to Dogs?

Ken Tudor - Friday, January 22, 2016

Research Regarding Safety of PreservativesPreservatives are used in food products to decrease spoiling and increase the shelf life of food. There is no question that without them packaged and canned meat products would probably not exist. That is true for most of the packaged products in the middle isles and freezer section of the supermarket. Fresh meats, fruits and vegetables without preservatives are always in isles along the walls. But are these chemicals that make food convenient safe for our dogs? Are they safe for us? Honestly after all of these years of using preservatives in food, we still don’t know for sure. Here is what we know. Read more...

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Spicing Up Your Homemade Dog Food

Ken Tudor - Friday, January 15, 2016

Add variety to your dog's homemade dog foodLike us, even dogs can get tired of the same taste day after day. Let’s spice up your homemade dog food and make it a little more interesting.  Read more...

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Important Supplements for All Dogs and Puppies (Part 2)

Ken Tudor - Thursday, January 07, 2016


Important Supplements for All Dogs and PuppiesA balanced homemade or commercial diet should contain all of the essential nutrients your dog needs for adequate health. But who wants just adequate health for their dog? The key to great health is a good diet. Hippocrates, the father of medicine, put it best when he said “Let food by thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” Two supplements can help transform your dog’s diet into a great diet- fish oil and probiotics. Last week we discussed the first. Now find out about the second. Read more...

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Important Supplements for All Dogs and Puppies (Part 1)

Ken Tudor - Thursday, December 31, 2015

Fish OilA balanced homemade or commercial diet should contain all of the essential nutrients your dog needs for adequate health. But who wants just adequate health for their dog? The key to great health is a good diet. Hippocrates, the father of medicine, put it best when he said “Let food by thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” Two supplements can help transform your dog’s diet into a great diet. Read more...

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3 Ways to Judge Hypoallergenic Dog Foods

Ken Tudor - Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Is your food hypoallergenic? Here are three ways to check. Do you think your dog’s itching is caused by food allergies? Does your veterinarian think you have a dog with food allergies? Do you just want to try a new diet to see if it will improve your dog’s fur coat? These days many dog owners, like you, are asking themselves and their vets these same questions. They want to try a hypoallergenic diet for their dog. But how do you tell if a dog food is hypoallergenic? How do you compare different brands of hypoallergenic dog foods? There are  3 important requirements for hypoallergenic dog food.  Read more...

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What You Need to Know About “Fillers” in Dog Food

Ken Tudor - Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Why is one type of carbohydrate given the bad name “filler” and another type of carbohydrate considered better nutrition?“I only feed my dog a grain-free dog food because it doesn’t have fillers which are bad for pets.” I hear this a lot during my nutritional consultations with pet parents. So, what is a “filler”? The word “filler” is used to describe a “bad” ingredient and generally refers to grain products in pet food. Grains are carbohydrates. But so are the potatoes, sweet potatoes, beans and tapioca used in grain-free diets. So, why is one type of carbohydrate given the bad name “filler” and another type of carbohydrate considered better nutrition?  Read more...

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