Suggested Diet for Senior Dogs

Tips for elderly

You may need to lightly cook/sear meat if you find raw meat is no longer as appealing to your senior. Taste buds may change, warming the food releases odours. Mash/mince food if teeth/gum problems.  

Portion size

Seniors may benefit from three smaller meals a day rather than a bone and one main meal.
Breakfast: Meaty bones if they are still able to chew otherwise minced meat (with bone included), a few biscuits and either an egg or cottage cheese (portion about same amount as an egg). 
Lunch and night meal: Meat (50-60% of meal) and veges (40-50% of meal) for night meal, Flee Flea
Green Tripe for one meal a week as it is an excellent source of probiotics.  No food is to be left down all day (not usually an issue with dogs!).  No grains or cereals – no commercial dried food. If your dog has skin issues  or joint issues NO Beef, steak, mince, venison.

Meat 50-60% of meal

  • Minced - Rabbit, Goat, Chicken, Duck, Lamb, Venison, Possum (give a mix of meats over a week to ensure your pet receives a good balance of minerals, vitamins, fats and amino acids) Check the minced meat includes ground bone/bone meal to ensure calcium and phosphorus is included

  • Organ meat 5%- 10% of total food (often organ meat is included in shop brought food)

  • Green Tripe – good source of probiotics

  • Raw fish (boneless) or canned in spring water
     

Vegetables and Fruit 40-50% of meal

Steamed and mashed (helps gut health, supplies additional vitamins and minerals) especially green vegetables, pumpkin, kumera, carrots, alfalfa sprouts. Ripe fruit.  Take stone out if giving stone fruit.  No grapes or raisins. No: silverbeet juice (high in oxalic acid), onion, corn cobs.

 

Bones  

Raw meaty bones e.g. chicken necks/wings, duck or rabbit necks, veal.  Feed raw only, supervise feeding, feed appropriate size for breed.  
No beef, canon bones or rawhide chews.  Raw meaty bones supply calcium and phosphorus and cleans their teeth! 

 
Biscuits

If your senior has teeth or gum issues you may need to soften the good quality biscuits with water

Supplement

  • Flee Flea, nutritional supplement see products page (No commercial flea products)

  • Grated carrot, crushed pumpkin seed help keep intestinal worms away

  • If any health issues they will need to be discussed for additional requirements

 

Drink

Fresh water should be available 24 hours. 

 

*Tip: Keep raw meat frozen and only thaw what is needed for that day.  Ensure preparation surfaces and food bowls are thoroughly cleaned after every meal.  No plastic food or water bowls. 

 

Raw Food Safety

I have heard that some vet clinics are advising clients not to feed raw meat.  One of the reasons they give is the risk of food poisoning to either the owner or the pet.  This is only a possibility if basic food hygiene is not followed.   The raw pet food manufacturers have strict regulations from Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) to follow, the same as human food manufacturers.  To help minimise the possibility of an infection it is best to freeze meat for at least 24 hours prior to feeding.  Only defrost enough for each day’s meals.  Thoroughly wash all food preparation surfaces and food bowls after every meal.  Use ceramic or stainless steel food and water bowls not plastic as plastic can harbor bacteria. This is no different to what we humans do when preparing our own meat meals.

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