Yes you read it right – I have created a low-fat complete and balanced Thanksgiving Dinner for your pups! It’s not only simple, but really easy to put together so that your dogs can have a special treat for Turkey-Day just like you.
My own pup Ash has a very sensitive stomach, and has some sensitivity to higher fat diets – we honestly aren’t sure if he has chronic pancreatitis, but I’ve found that if I keep his fat content under a certain percentage (on a dry matter or caloric basis) he thrives. I’ve also found that he does best on a freshly cooked diet rather than a kibbled or raw diet. So Ash is definitely one of those dogs that could really suffer from those “high fat” table scraps on Thanksgiving.
I created this recipe with Ash in mind! I wanted to make something that you could offer as an alternative to your pup if you’d like to, this recipe (if you use all the supplements) is complete and balanced for adult dogs. I highly suggest stuffing it into a couple different kong toys, spreading it on a licky matt, and offering it to your pup in a safe space while the Thanksgiving “festivities” are going on.
Turkey Breast: A great lean protein that pairs perfectly with the fatty nature of the ground turkey – very high in essential amino acids, Vitamin B6 and Selenium.
Russet Potato: Packed with different nutrients including vitamin C, Vitamin B6, and Potassium, and also a great source of antioxidants such as flavonoids, carotenoids and phenolic acids.
Cranberries: Very high in Vitamin C, along with many different types of antioxidants such as: Quercetin, Myricetin, Peonidin, Ursolic acid, A-type proanthocyanidins – which provide both anti-inflammatory effects to reduce oxidative stress, and may help with other diseases and conditions (such as season allergies, and UTIs in higher doses).
Green Beans: A great source of fiber, folate, Vitamin C, and Vitamin K.
Supplement (BalanceIT Canine): WITHOUT THE SUPPLEMENT: this diet will be deficient in… Riboflavin, Thiamin, Vitamin A, Vitamin B12, Vitamin E, Calcium, Copper, Iodine, Iron, Manganese, Zinc, and Vitamin D
Walnut Oil: An excellent source of linoleic acid and alpha-Linolenic acid – which are essential fatty acids that dogs need in their diet.
- 471g Turkey Breast, cooked, roasted without skin
- 260g Russet Potato, baked in skin
- 101g Green Beans, canned without salt
- 35g Cranberries, boiled in water, without sugar
- 4 3/8g BalanceIT Canine
- 1 1/4t Walnut Oil
- Protein 59%
- Fat 14%
- Carb 27%
- 1060 calories per serving
Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.
Purchase Turkey breast whole, without any added flavorings or seasonings. Then roast in the oven until done. Depending on the cut of turkey this may take from 30 minutes to 45 minutes. Cut into bite-sized pieces, or slice to be added into food processor.
Bake Russet Potato/s in skin using a baking tray or dish, perce with a fork along with top to allow air to release. They can be placed into the same oven (even on the same tray) as the Turkey. Potatoes may take from 45 to 60 minutes to bake.
Cranberries can be cooked in water on the stovetop – simply add 4 parts cranberries to 1 part water. Allow to boil covered on low for 30 minutes (or until the cranberries “pop”. DO NOT DRAIN. Puree mixture using blender or food processor.
Rinse and drain canned green beans.
Measure all components after cooked and cooled (turkey, potato, and cranberries) to amounts listed above, and combine with walnut oil, BalanceIT, green beans. You can either chop everything into bite-sized pieces and mix well. Or you can toss all these ingredients into a food processor and have it mix and chop everything all for you.
Once combined it is time to either stuff in a kong, or place into a bowl to serve!
This recipe was made using a free computer software from BalanceIT, which was created by a board certified veterinary nutritionist, and is complete and balanced for adult dogs. Remember that if you are not using this recipe with the supplements listed above it is NOT complete and balanced and thus should be treated as a “treat” and kept to 10% of your dog’s overall caloric needs for the day. Make sure to also adjust the amount of their regular diet for the day.
LOOKING TO TAKE THE NEXT STEP:
I feel like BalanceIT is a great place to start if you want to jump into the home-cooking realm (which is what I used to formulate this recipe), however it does have some limitations/negatives in my point of view. Mainly the fact that recipes on BalanceIT do not contain organ meats.
Organ meats often provide many different vitamins, minerals and nutrients that cannot be found in other food items. Thus, after you have gotten the hang of cooking for your pup, if you’d like to take the next step to adding in organ meats I’d highly recommend working with a board certified veterinary nutritionist to formulate a fully custom recipe for your pup! You can find more information about finding an ACVN diplomat along with the other options for home-cooking for your dog in my blog post on DIY Dog Food.
RECOMMENDED PRODUCTS FOR COOKING FOR DOGS:
As someone who homecooked for several years for their pups I’ve come to really rely on certain products to help me with the cooking process. Below are some of those products.
The following links are affiliate links – if you purchase using these links I will receive a small commission at no cost to you.
I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season and you are able to chat with some family and friends in this crazy time – even if it’s only virtually over zoom. I am thankful for every one of you, your support – if I don’t get a chance to talk to you personally – happy thanksgiving – I hope you see you all around on Instagram and Facebook – don’t be a stranger!
About the Author: Nikki is a Registered Veterinary Technician (Veterinary Nurse) and Dog Mom with over a decade of experience with dogs and cats. Since graduation from college (BS Biology, AS Animal Health -2013) she has adopted two mixed breed dogs – Ranger and Ash, and has focused her time learning about pet food and nutrition.
Nikki shares information on a range of dog nutrition topics: from how to create a homemade complete and balanced dog food recipes, to how to choose a dog food. Nikki strives to give dog parents the information they need in order to make the best nutrition decisions for their pup!