September 21, 2013

pumpkin mush

Poor little Maple. Her stomach's been on the fritz for weeks.

We took her to the vet who thought it was viral, something she picked up from contact with another dog. I thought it could be due to the stress of Bobby being away for a couple of weeks. She really does love her daddy and is sad when he travels. Could that be what's upsetting her stomach?

But it'd been about three weeks and although she regained control of her bowels and Bobby was back home, something was still off. I won't get into details but things just didn't look right when she went to the bathroom.

I finally decided to put on my doggy detective hat and hop onto some online forums. I learned that some dogs simply have weak stomachs. Even if they appear to be fine, a lot of dogs (especially smaller ones) are full of anxiety and nerves.

Maybe the world is just too big and scary for them.

Admittedly, the canned dog food we were giving Maple wasn't the greatest quality. I used to feed Parker cans of Pedigree with no problem but the mystery mush may be too much for Maple's little body to process.

She ain't no iron-bellied hound, that's for sure.

So I decided to create a food for her that is gentle on the stomach to see if that solved the poop problem. I read through some recipes for homemade dog food and had to laugh at how seriously some people take it.

Probiotic powders? Fish oil capsules broken over the food? Not for us. I love my dog but let's keep it within reason. She's already the best-dressed, best-slept member of this household. do we really need to add 'best-fed' to that list?

I eventually put the reasonable parts of some recipes together and created something I've dubbed Pumpkin Mush. Maple scarfed this down like I'd never seen before. She licked the bowl clean, then licked the floor, then licked around her water bowl for crumbs before looking up at me expectantly, wanting more.
Note the orange pumpkin stain around her mouth.
Yeah, that isn't coming out.
Here's the recipe:

1 pound lean ground beef
15-oz can pumpkin puree
1 cup carrots, cooked and chopped into bite-size pieces
2 cups long-grain white rice

I cooked the beef and the rice separately (no salt/seasoning; doggies don't need additives!) and then combined them in a large bowl. To that I added the pumpkin puree and cooked carrots. I mixed it all together and was left with this:

I measured out 3/4 cup servings into zippy bags and now have enough to feed Maple for a week. One baggy can be reheated in the microwave for 25 seconds (it won't melt) and then the contents can be dumped straight into Maple's food dish. So simple!

Yes, it's pricier than buying Pedigree but last night she ate her first bowl of Pumpkin Mush and this morning made her first solid poop in 3 weeks! It worked literally overnight.

I'm so pleased with this that I may look into making from-scratch dog biscuits next. What can I say, I've got a pampered pup.

But no fish oil capsules for her. Got to draw the line somewhere.

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