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Is it OK to feed my Labrador cooked chicken breast once a week for added protein?
By Sharon from Nashville, TN
Chicken meat is fine for dogs. But be sure and completely de-bone it first, and take as much of the skin off as possible. Chicken bones splinter really easily (as do other bones) and should not be given to the dog, or cat for that matter.
If you're giving it to him simply for extra protein, there's no need as long as he is on a good quality food. I give it to mine periodically as a special treat.
What do other dog owners think about the safety of this food?
By David B.
Bravo for you! Don't believe your vet he probably sells dog food too. If you search the web asking if a certain brand has problems like seizures, etc. you will be shocked at what you find. Also search "4D" meat - try not to throw up. Check out "why people food is good for your dog" with your search engine. The dogs will thrive on your chicken - you might want to add vitamins & veggies to their food as well. Check out how other people are doing it. I'm a former dog breeder I think I know what I'm talking about.
Some vets and animal experts are trying to sell their (usually very pricey) special blend of dog food, but usually a vet recommends against people food for furbabies because of all of the seasonings and spices used for people food. A lot of those add-ins can KILL your dog.
Dogs especially shouldn't be eating heavily spiced or salted foods and there are people foods like garlic and onion that are strictly off a dog menu owing to allergy and poisoning potential.
So most vets have a blanket rule with their practices that your furbabies should never have people foods because a blanket rule doesn't take up as much office time as having to explain 10-20 times a day (per pet) why. The vet just says 'I don't want Fluffykins and Fido getting even so much as a table scrap' and then either pushes their special blend or tells you to feed XYZ brand available at the grocery (ick, see the previous post). End of and the vet quickly moves on to the next topic or patient.
However - chicken cooked especially for dogs (no salt, no seasonings, no onions, etc) is perfectly healthy and a good vet will admit that-read those labels to see that most dog foods use 'chicken by-products' and some even boast 'all white chicken meat'.
There is a trend now with many vets (since the horrific contaminated feed from China scandal in 2007) to actually encourage pet owners to make their own feeds at home using approved recipes, and chicken features heavily as part of the ingredients list.
Since your vet has pronounced your babies as healthy and fit, he needs to reassess his rule at least in your case.
Dogs evolved with man for thousands of years by eating what man ate. Dogs live longer and are healthier, I have found, that eat people food. They put so much stuff in the processed animal foods that its like us eating junk food constantly. I have never been able to get an animal to eat the high ticket stuff the vet promotes. Now, they are marketing homemade dog/cat food in little refridgerators at the store. Way more expensive than just doing what you are doing.
My dog has issues with his pancreas, so processed dog food just doesn't to it for him. I have been going to a holistic vet, who I feel saved my dog's life. They would like me to put him on a raw diet, which I am seriously considering. In the mean time they told me to prepare his food. I usually fix a chicken stew in the crockpot. I use boneless/skinless breasts along with vegetables. The veggies I use are sweet potatoes, winter squash, beets, mushrooms, carrots, green beans. I mix up the vegetables so he gets a different taste each time I prepare the stew. I have also made meat loaf with ground chicken, turkey, buffalo, and I am hoping to get some rabbit from a friend. I process the sames vegetables in the food processor and then use them as the filler in the meat loaf. Needless to say, my little guy is doing well. The vet does have me add vitamin supplements to his food.
Some good advice here. I do raw feed my cat and cooked for my allergic dog. He lived to be 17 on home cooked food. I think the chicken is a good start. But you will need to vary the diet to see that they get necessary vitamins and minerals. I fed my dog canned salmon with brown rice. The salmon supplied the calcium he needed from the soft cooked bones. So you do need to know what nutriients your dogs need and then construct a recipe that supplies then. But that information is available with an internet search. A one food diet will not be adequate. By the way....dark meat chicken is more nutricious than white meat. So by all means home cook for your dogs; but take the time to study nutrition and choose your recipe accordingly.
Here is a link to a vet site with a good dog food recipe. This Vet goes into the basic nutrition you need to know. One last thought..dont throw away the chicken skin. Dogs and cats need a good amount of fat in their diets.
God - I'm so confused. Of late I've read not to feed dogs canned food, not to feed dogs raw meat, not to feed dogs cooked meat, not to feed dogs dog biscuits, and not to feed dog chews.
I've never been so confused about what to do. I've had dogs for 10 years & am now so paranoid that I'm left wondering what to feed my dogs to insure they have a safe & happy life.
Congratulations "heather dianne" you said it all. And if we all listened to these well intended advice/options from non professional people we could become so confused that a "psychiatrist' would need to sort the problem out for us. Dogs are pack animals that have roamed the world for centurys finding live animals to survive on. Humans domesticated them fed food foreign to their nature and the rest was "history" just use common sense and use what-ever best suits your own animal.
I have my 6 year old Shih Tzu on a prescription diet made by Hills, that I get at the vet. She is a little over weight. She weighted about 16 lbs. She is now on diet food I get from the vet, and I give her a little chicken breast once in awhile. Is it okay for a Shih Tzu to have a small amount of chicken breast?
By Don from Shelby, NC