Bone broth is a long forgotten superfood that’s inexpensive, nutrient packed and easy to make. It is really important to note bone broth is NOT stock. No added salt, herbs, spices or veggies are used like a traditional stock base and the prep is different. Read on and you will learn how to make it at home.
Here are four reasons you should consider bone broth for your dog.
Bone Broth Is Good For Joints
Bone broth is loaded with glycosaminoglycans and you might even be familiar with one of them: glucosamine. Not only does bone broth contain super amazing amounts of glucosamine, it’s also packed with other joint protecting compounds like chondroitin and hyaluronic acid. Moreover, the glycosaminoglycans from bone broth are resistant to digestion and are absorbed in their intact form. They act like hormones, stimulating cells called fibroblasts, which lay down collagen in the joints, tendons, ligaments, and even the arteries.
Bone Broth Helps The Liver Detox
The liver is the master organ of detoxification. The dog’s liver is under assault daily as the poor dog lies on carpets and floors treated with chemicals, walks on grass that’s been treated and sprayed with poisons, consumes foods with toxic and synthetic ingredients, and suffers through toxic dewormers, flea and tick preventives, drugs, antibiotics, vaccines and more. The liver was never meant to suffer this onslaught and its capacity to detoxify is limited by the availability of the amino acid glycine. Guess what has tons of glycine? Bone broth!
Bone Broth Promotes A Healthy Gut
The lining of the intestines contains millions of tiny holes that allow the passage of digested nutrients to enter the body. Stress, poor diet and bacterial overgrowth can cause more holes to open or to become bigger…this is called leaky gut. The problem with those big holes is that things can pass through that aren’t meant to, including undigested food matter, toxins and yeast. The body will notice those undigested food particles as foreign invaders and start to attack them. This is how allergies and food sensitivities develop. Bone broth is loaded with a gooey substance that can plug up those leaky holes: gelatin!
Bone Broth Is Great Nutrition For Sick Dogs
Have you ever had a dog with terrible diarrhea and had trouble getting him back on solid food? Or a dog who is convalescing and doesn’t have a great appetite but you know he needs more nutrition? Bone broth to the rescue! Studies conducted in the 1800’s showed that when there is plenty of gelatin in the diet, the body’s need for protein from meat sources can be reduced by as much as fifty percent! Bone broth is also an excellent source of important minerals and can bolster the immune system (think chicken soup)! Bone broth is also loaded with glycine, which aids digestion by helping to regulate the synthesis of bile salts and secretion of gastric acid.
Bone Broth for dogs - An Excellent addition to Dry Kibble
The lovely meaty jelly is an excellent addition to dry kibble as it adds all-important moisture to their diet (a bowl of dry kibble contains only 6% to 10% moisture content in comparison to a bowl of raw food which contains anywhere between 70% and 80% moisture). This is a wonderful way to assist Kidney function, the inclusion of moisture enables the Kidneys to work well. This is particularly important for those dogs with Renal Disease or Kidney Stones.
And as an added bonus it simply makes it taste so much better - who doesn't like gravy, right?
How To Make Bone Broth
So, now you’re convinced of the benefits of bone broth for your dog, then grab a pot and let’s get cooking!
Add An Acidic Acid
This helps draw the minerals out of the bones more thoroughly. Raw apple cider vinegar is most commonly used (It’s well regarded by herbalists for its ability to draw minerals out of plants). Lemon juice may also be used.
Cook For A Long Time
This is necessary to get the full nutrition out of the bones. There is no magic time, but try simmering it for 24 hours in a crockpot. You could do it on the stove as well, but be sure you don’t leave the simmering broth unattended.
What sort of bones are best?
You can use raw or cooked bones but be sure to include joint bones with cartilage. You can collect and save cooked bones from your own meals in the freezer but be sure to rinse any sauce off that may be irritating to your dog’s digestive system. Turkey wings and legs are a good raw choice.
You will get the best 'jelly' buy using jointed bones like chicken feet, pork hocks or chicken frames. Completely cover the bones with water; add the vinegar or lemon juice. Cover by about five centimeters of water, but not too much more, to keep the broth dense. For a regular sized crockpot, use about two to four tablespoons apple cider vinegar. Turn your crockpot to high just to get it started for the first hour, then switch to low and let it go for the day. When your broth is finished, strain the bones (do not feed these to your dog!). If you used bones with meat attached you’ll need to strip them by hand.
Once it’s chilled, skim the excess fat off the top of the broth if you wish (there may be less than you expect). The remainder is your broth. If it has a jelly-like consistency when it’s cold you’ve done a good job of it!
You can freeze this broth in small containers (even ice cube trays) for easy dispensing. Or you can store it in your refrigerator for up to four days. Our girls love the addition of blueberries or a slice of apple to their ‘pupsicles’ - give it a go in the warmer months. While bone broth isn’t nutritionally complete for exclusive long term feeding, you can use it as a base for a complete meal or as a supplement for your dogs regular diet.
Bone broth is a healthy way to moisten dry food, hydrate your dog when he’s sick, and you can even share it with your dog and reap the same benefits! Make bone broth a regular part of your cooking repertoire this winter.
Does all this sound too hard and time consuming? Here is the easiest way to make this at home yourself by just popping on the Kettle!
So, now you know how to make it yourself, It also tastes great - so why aren't you including it in your dog's diet every day? I know why - it takes hours and hours, is messy and makes your entire house smell like meaty bones! I'm incredibly time poor, I work long hours and can't be bothered spending 24 hours making this superfood for my dog. Sure you can find liquid bone broth in a few places, it's not common and it's always very expensive. I've seen a one litre jar for sale for $24! That's crazy expensive. Don't get me wrong I adore my dogs and would do anything for them - except wrestling with chicken feet and pork hocks after a 9-hour work day with the possibility of stuffing it up and wasting both my time and my money on a failed experiment can be overwhelming! Fast forward an entire year, countless failed attempts in the test kitchen and voila! Perfect, delicious POWDERED Bone Broth that required nothing more than me adding water and serving it up. That was nearly five years ago now, and I'm proud to say chica+co have been serving it up to thousands of happy customers - people just like me (and you!), stressed, time poor and intimidated about making their own.
Check it out, it's as easy to make as 1, 2, 3!
1. Combine Two Cups (500ml) of boiling water & one heaped Tablespoon (15-17 grams) of powder.
2. Whisk very well to combine the powder & water.
3. Refrigerate overnight then serve the meaty jelly over food the next day.
For general support, I feed broth at least three times a week. You can not overfeed Bone Broth as it's an all-natural food, but as a guide feed One Heaped Tablespoon per 5kg of body weight.
If your dog has been unwell, is recovering from surgery, or is elderly or weak, feeding a spoonful, or a defrosted ice cube of broth along with their meals every day for at least a week or for the duration of their illness is a smart option.
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