Diet – Starter Stew

Dogs are carnivores, they thrive on meat as their source of protein. Many pet owners rely on dry kibble as the mainstay of their dog’s diet, but by adding a few choice types of meat, vegetables, and good fats, health and vitality can be greatly improved.

Over the years I have worked with lots of dogs, most of them compromised in some form. I used to feed what I considered a “modest” brand of dog food. Then I saw that many of the dogs just were not thriving. So I made changes. I went drastically one direction to feeding raw but could not maintain that because of the time, cost, and really the inconvenience of it. What I do today is derived from years of trial and error and it is where I start with all the dogs that come into my care.

Dr. Cassie, what do you feed YOUR dogs?

Here is my base recipe that I start every new dog with – Starter Stew. Use organic ingredients as much as you can. Other whole food recipes can be found by clicking this link.

Starter Stew

  • 2 burger patties, ground beef, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 medium yellow squash, diced
  • 1/2 large sweet potato, cooked, peeled, cubed
  • 1 can green beans (add the liquid to the stew)
  • 1 quart organic beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon good quality olive oil or coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon quality sea salt

Use a medium pot and cook the ground beef in the oil. Add the other ingredients and simmer until the squash is cooked. While our horses love raw squash, I have found that my dogs prefer squash at least lightly steamed. Allow to cool down thoroughly before serving. Makes one serving for a medium dog, two servings for small sized dogs.

Feel free to get creative with your stew and add vegetables such as carrots, turnips, celery, and even a bit of beet root (beets are best cooked first, then cubed and added to the stew). I do not feed onions, white potatoes, or tomatoes to my dogs. Neither do I feed them vegetables that generate gas such as broccoli and cauliflower.

If you have several dogs and need to stretch the recipe, you can add 1/2 – 1 cup of cooked brown rice per dog. While dogs do not need grains like rice and oats, it is ok to provide them in small amounts unless your dog is allergic to them. Remember though, focus on the meat protein versus grains.

I make Starter Stew in a very large stock pot and feed over several days.


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