What Are the Benefits of Giving My Dog Bone Broth? [Recipe Included]
by Geoff Works |
Bone broth has long been a staple in kitchens all over the world. Over 2,000 years ago, the Chinese began using it as a medicinal supplement to strengthen the kidneys and support digestion. The Greek physician Hippocrates, the father of medicine, recommended bone broth for overall bodily cleansing. The stock was so powerful, in fact, people started referring to it as “liquid gold.”
But can you feed your dog bone broth? In recent years, bone broth has become especially popular for pets as it’s been observed to help with their digestive issues and gut health, alleviate sore joints, and maintain a healthy immune system and coat.
Many pet owners have successfully incorporated the stock into their dog’s diets. So, if you’ve been thinking of doing the same, here are some things you should know.
What is Bone Broth?
Bone broth is a soup or stew made from slowly cooking various animals' bones and connective tissues. Some prefer making this nutritious stock out of the leftover bones of poultry, pork, or beef, ensuring nothing goes to waste. To make bone broth, you can also use marrow and connective tissues like feet, hooves, beaks, gizzards, and fins.
Bone broth for dogs is considered a safer way of getting your pup to consume necessary nutrients, unlike giving them raw or cooked bones, which can get lodged in their throats. However, when giving your dog bone broth, you may want to steer clear of certain ingredients like onions, garlic, and excess salt, as these are harmful to canines. We suggest consulting your veterinarian to ensure your bone broth is safe for your pet’s consumption.
The Benefits of Bone Broth for Dogs
Bone broth for dogs is packed with nutrients, making it an effective supplement for a complete and balanced diet. The stock tends to contain easily absorbable, hydrating vitamins and minerals that provide the necessary building blocks to boost your dog’s overall health. Here are other benefits of bone broth for dogs:
Our furry friends tend to consume just about anything when not properly supervised. Sometimes even popular treats can contain toxic substances difficult for them to digest. Here’s where bone broth comes in handy, as it provides amino acids like glutamine and glycine, which minimize toxin buildup in the body.
Notice your dog’s a picky eater? You can try serving their kibble with bone broth, or substitute their usual food for the stock during some meals, to stimulate their appetite. Bone broth typically contains flavorful ingredients that can prompt hunger and thirst, which is why it’s often recommended for dogs suffering from an upset stomach and senior canines who have trouble eating.
Supports Immune System
If your dog isn’t feeling well or prone to illness, you can try giving them bone broth to boost their immune system. Aside from being easy to consume, the stock normally contains vitamins and minerals to ensure your pet still gets all the necessary nutrients.
Strengthens Bones and Joints
Glucosamine, hyaluronic acid, and chondroitin are among the nutrients found in bone broth, which are especially helpful in repairing and strengthening a dog's joints and bones. While bone broth won't cure overall joint problems, you can pair it with other treatments, depending on your veterinarian's advice.
Bone broth for dogs can also fight inflammation since the healthy stock contains amino acids like glycine and arginine. Suppose your pet suffers chronic inflammation, which can lead to arthritis, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, or canine dementia. In that case, you can have them consume bone broth to alleviate their symptoms.
Maintains Healthy Skin and Coat
Bone broth contains collagen, a useful protein for maintaining your dog’s skin and coat. While a dog’s body already produces collagen, its production rate decreases as your pet ages. The stock can also be used to thwart more serious skin conditions, though it’s best to consult with your trusted veterinarian before proceeding.
How to Make Bone Broth for Dogs at Home
While bone broth is now also sold commercially, it is a relatively simple recipe and requires a few ingredients, likely ones you already have in your kitchen. Just remember the key to creating great bone broth for dogs is to allow your stock to simmer for 12 to 24 hours.
Bone Broth Recipe for Dogs: Homemade Bone Broth
This is a simple bone broth recipe that uses ingredients normally already available in your kitchen.
- 2 to 3 pounds of bone, with or without marrow, from any available meat
- ¼ cup of apple cider vinegar
- 1 to 2 chopped carrots
- 2 stalks of chopped celery
- 4 ounces of chopped Shiitake mushrooms
- 3 cloves of garlic (to be omitted if your dog has a history of hemolytic anemia)
- Optional: either 3 inches of sliced ginger root, or 2 teaspoons of turmeric
- Water (amount depends on your preference)
- Place all the ingredients in a large pot, slow cooker, or pressure cooker. When pouring water, ensure that the rest of the ingredients are submerged, most importantly, the bones.
- Cook your stock on low heat with the lid on for 12 to 24 hours. At 6 hours, you may remove any debris or film that has risen on top of your broth. (Cooking time will vary for a slow cooker and pressure cooker.)
- Once done, allow your bone broth to cool. Make sure to remove and discard any bones.
- Store the broth in your refrigerator and allow any fat to rise to the top. Skim the fat and discard it before serving. You may serve your broth warm or cool, and it can be stored for up to 5 days.
Bone Broth Recipe for Dogs: Chewy Dog Treats
Alternatively, you can bake your dog bone broth treats using your original stock. Just remember to keep the fat skimmed off the top of your broth instead of discarding it for this recipe.
- ½ cup of bone broth
- ⅓ cup of bone broth fat (can be combined with or substituted for vegetable shortening)
- ½ cup of pumpkin puree or butternut squash, without peel and seeds
- 2 ½ cups of all-purpose flour
- Peanut butter
- Preheat your oven to 375° F.
- Combine your prepared bone broth and bone broth fat in a bowl and heat for 45 seconds, or until liquefied.
- Add pumpkin puree and flour to your broth, and stir until mixed. Knead the dough after.
- Roll your dough to ¼ inch thickness, then cut out treats.
- Bake in the oven at 375° F for 40 minutes.
- While the treats are still warm, spread peanut butter on top of them. Wait for the treats to cool completely before feeding them to your dog.
For more information on keeping your dog healthy and other tips for pet owners, visit our blog here.