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We found a new holistic vet, and I took Rodrigo and Sydney in for a wellness check. Rodrigo walked away with a clean bill of health. He has inflammation in his joints, but that was expected and is getting better through a raw food diet and supplements. Sydney, on the other hand, is overweight, which I knew, and the veterinarian suspected that she has an under-active thyroid, which may be the reason she is having trouble losing weight. Tests showed that her thyroid is fine, but the veterinarian stressed that I need to add more vegetables to my dogs' diet.
I was adding an all-natural vegetable supplement to Sydney's diet; a tablespoonful a day. However, her vet says that this isn't enough. He recommended changing Sydney's diet so that 1/3 of her meals are vegetables (the serving suggestion on the supplement is significantly less). I increased the amount of the supplement to Sydney's meals, but this meant that I went through several containers a week which was outside my budget.
Following my vet's recommendations, I realized that I needed to make a vegetable mixture myself.
Vegetables I'm Adding to Our Dog's Meals
Dr. Yearout gave me a print out of vegetables he wanted me to add to our dogs' diet, checking off the ones he wanted me to focus on, which includes the following:
- collard greens
- dandelion greens
- green beans
- yellow squash
Fruits I Occasionally Feed to Our Dogs' Meals
- Apples: Apples are packed with vitamin “C” and pectin. Pectin is a powerful detoxifier, reducing the risk of heart disease. Because it slows the absorption of sugars, it is beneficial to animals with diabetes. With the exception of avocados (don't give to birds), apples are the only fruit that may be mixed with vegetables. Apples are best when in season. Leave skin intact.
- Berries: Berries are rich in vitamins “A” and “C”, potassium and fiber. Check your pet's stool to make sure they can assimilate berries. When choosing strawberries try to buy organic. Like bananas, strawberries are often contaminated with insecticide sprays.
DIY Vegetable Blend for Our Dogs
With four dogs, I could no longer afford the all natural vegetable supplement, I attempted to make a vegetable mix using the notes from my veterinarian and recipes from other raw feeders. In my first attempt, I added the following vegetables, roots, and supplements. Please keep in mind that I'm not a nutritionist.
DIY Vegetable Mix for Dogs (ingredients optional):
Why are ingredients optional? I choose vegetables that are available, low glycemic, and safe for my dogs. Every veggie mix that I make is a little different; if I'm low on time, then I get fewer vegetables and other ingredients.
- one bunch of organic spinach or collard greens
- one bunch of organic kale
- one bunch of organic parsley
- one bunch of organic celery
- 5 organic zucchini
- 1-2″ of ginger (purchased a root and cut an inch or two off)
- 1 whole lemon, with peel
- 3-4 tablespoons of local raw honey (or 2-3 tablespoons of bee pollen)
- 1/4 cup of Flora4 (optional)
- 1/4 cup of green-lipped mussel powder (optional)
- 1 tablespoon of ground kelp (optional)
- 1 tablespoon of spirulina/chlorella (optional)
- 2-3 cups of bone broth; made with turmeric or golden paste (optional)
The dogs love it. Sydney's been eating her food with more vigor since I started adding the above mixture, which J named Jenga-Juice for Dogs, to her food.
You don't have to follow the above recipe. You can make any blend of vegetables that you like as long as they're safe for your dog.
What You'll Need to Create this Veggie Mix
I used the following tools to mix up 10 pounds:
- knife (CLICK HERE to learn more about the knives I use)
- cutting board
- 8-qt mixing bowl
- Nutri-Bullet (or blender)
- mixing spoon
- Ball wide-mouthed jars
It takes about 30-45 minutes to chop, blend, and mix everything. I then transfer the mixture into glass jars and freeze. Tip: don't seal the containers until the veggie mix is frozen. Super easy.
Creating Bone Broth
I store several containers of bone broth in the freezer. I order my bones through our local raw food co-op and store them in a dedicated freezer.
Cost and Storage of My Veggie Mix for Dogs
COST: It costs less than $25 to pick up all of the ingredients for my natural vegetable supplement and I was able to make enough to last almost a month. Instead of spending $100 a month, I'm spending $25 a month, which is well within my budget. At the moment, only Sydney is getting the vegetable blend. I will be creating a larger batch later this month and adding it to all of our dogs' food.
STORAGE: The supplement is ladled into Ball glass containers containers. I store the veggie mix in the freezer until needed.
DISCLAIMER: My recipe is similar to several recipes available online that have been created by raw feeders. The ingredients I used are a blend of information from our holistic veterinarian, my friends Tina B and Nikki R, and a raw feeder I follow named Kayak S.
Have More Questions About My Veggie Mix?
You're not alone! I received several questions which inspired a blog post to clarify my veggie mix to readers.
2018 update: Sydney's blood work revealed that her thyroid is healthy; however, I haven't changed her diet and supplements beyond reducing the amount she eats. She lost more than 10 pounds with less food and light exercise.