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Home-Prepared Cooked Dog Food Diets

One of the most common mistakes that people make when feeding a home-cooked diet is the failure to add calcium. You must add calcium when you feed a diet that does not include bones.

Adult dogs need around 800 to 1,000 mg of calcium per pound of food fed. They also require the calcium to be supplied in a proper proportion to phosphorus.

The ideal calcium: phosphorus ratio in the canine diet is between 1:1 and 2:1. Meat contains a lot of phosphorus, so the more meat a diet contains, the more calcium will be required to reach the correct calcium:phosphorus ratio. Adding 800 to 1,000 mg of calcium will provide the correct calcium:phosphorus ratio even for a high-meat diet, unless you use a calcium supplement that also contains phosphorus. In that case, moderately higher amounts of calcium may be needed to balance out the additional phosphorus contained in the supplement.

Ground eggshell can be used as a calcium supplement. Rinse eggshells and dry them on a counter overnight, or in the oven, then grind them in a clean coffee grinder. One large eggshell provides one teaspoon of ground eggshell, which contains 2,000 mg of calcium, so add 1/2 teaspoon ground eggshell per pound of food fed. Don’t use eggshells that haven’t been ground to powder, as they may not be absorbed as well.

If you are interested in learning more about cooking for your golden send me an email as I have an ebook from Whole Dog Journal I can send to you as I used to home cook before we started feeding raw. (And will again if the raw diet doesn’t give Harry and Maddie allergy relief.)


1 Kristi Taylor { 11.04.13 at 7:57 pm }

Pat..would love you to email me those recipes…for both the homecooked meals and the raw diet..breeze is loving these meals..but need more ideas

2 Michael Dwinnell { 03.28.14 at 4:58 pm }

Hi Pat ! Have 8 year old Golden and want to prepare him the best meals I can. I too would love to have a couple recipes !! Thank-you

3 Chef Maridee { 11.13.14 at 3:49 pm }

Thank you for sharing. I would love to have any information on recipes, raw, and cooked, allergy and non allergy. thank you so very much. You can see what we have been Blessed with now on Facebook “Malmberg’s Golden Memories” . I would like to start all families out with the VERY best of recommendations. We use a very high quality mail delivery dog food,that I spent years researching before purchasing any. I do want to learn more as in allergy symptoms, etc..
thank you, I look forward to hearing from you.

4 Sandeep Sharma { 01.04.15 at 3:14 am }

Hi Pat,
A happy new year.
We r vegetarians can feed eggs but want to avoid any meat meal for our GR. He is now 5 month 4day old. And we want him to live a healthy life. Pl guide what best we can do for him. I will be oblige if you can send some tips to pamper my buddy MAC.
Sandeep Sharma

5 Isobel Robarts { 03.10.15 at 1:13 am }

Hi my4year old goldie weighs 39 kg and been on all kinds off diet foods (royal canine obesity etc) would like to cook her own food but not sure what to put in it ..please help!!

6 Lnassar { 05.18.15 at 12:17 pm }

Hi… we have a 6 year old over weight golden retriever, we feed him a mixture of home cooked chicken and vegetables, and taste of the wild dry food… what is the best food to feed him and the correct amounts in order to aid weight loss?

he is moderately active, with a 45 minute walk in the morning and he plays in the garden most evenings… your help would be much appreciated!

7 Robin { 11.10.15 at 7:09 pm }

I am interested in cooking for my 4 year old Golden Retriever. She weighs 70 pounds and is in excellent health. I want to keep her that way so I’m very interested in recipes and supplements that must be included in her meal twice a day.

8 Melissa { 05.15.16 at 12:54 am }

I would love to get the recipes for a home cooked diet for my dog. Thanks so much

9 Melissa v { 05.15.16 at 12:55 am }

I would love to get some home cooked diets for my dog thank

10 Lee Vollmer { 05.15.16 at 8:26 am }

I have a 97lb Doberman with allergy to storage mites. I can not feed him anything from a bag or box. I would like to cook for him. Can you suggest a diet?

11 Haytham Jaber { 11.22.16 at 1:14 pm }

Dear could you please send me the ebook you have authored 🙂

I really appreciate your help

12 Jayne { 11.27.16 at 12:20 pm }

Would love to have a recipe for a cooked diet for our Golden. She has skin issues but has gotten much better with a home cooked diet. I just want to be sure she is getting the proper vitamins etc.

13 Mo { 03.10.17 at 1:17 pm }

I’d love to have the recipes to cook for my two Golden boys. Many thanks in advance

14 Keith Clifford { 04.04.17 at 4:35 pm }

Hi Pat,
Would love to have recipes for our 1 yr old golden. Want to give her only the best,She’s the joy of our lives.

15 Keith Clifford { 04.04.17 at 4:38 pm }

Hi Pat, Would love to have some recipes for our I yr old Golden. She deserves the best. She’s a beautiful girl.
thanks, Keith

16 debbie aguinaga { 04.25.17 at 2:58 pm }

Hi..I would love to receive some receipes for our golden. shes put on a little weight and i just dont trust the dog food manufactures. my vet told me to start cooking for her. thank you

17 pat { 04.26.17 at 5:39 pm }

Email us at and we can share an ebook. Would recommend you use a base mix such as Honest Kitchen’s Preference and add protein as instructed on the box. (You can also add other stuff.)

18 Praki { 05.23.17 at 12:06 am }

My golden is 11 months old. Can you please advise me if I can prepare his food at home.
As of now I am feeding him the dog food 2 times a day & a few biscuits. He loves yogurt, milk & fruits too.

Please advise

19 Eliza { 06.18.17 at 8:58 pm }

Hi Pat
I have an 8 year old Golden Girl. Could you please email me a good home cooked recipe for the worlds fussiest eater.


20 Lisa { 06.30.17 at 6:03 pm }

Getting a GR puppy next month and want to feed him healthy food. After researching kibble and raw diets and home cooked diets I am overwhelmed with options. Your cookbook sounds awesome! Thanks

21 Joseph { 08.10.17 at 8:28 pm }

My golden just had mass cell tumor removed and would like to cook her home made food.any advice or recipes would be appreciated.She is doing well but was picky with her food. I just want to keep her going the right way thanks again for any help peace and wisdom

22 Farah Powell { 08.14.17 at 5:13 pm }


How much home made food mixed with dry food (for a 3 month old puppy) should you feed them? I’m having difficulty figuring out the right amount to feed my pup. We have transitioned to two a day feedings. Any tips who be appreciated.

Thank you,


23 Lori Hardesty { 09.17.17 at 12:06 am }

I would love to get your recipes. I have a 2 year old female and a 4 month old male and would like to get them off of the kibble and feed them healthy clean foods.

24 pat { 09.19.17 at 4:44 pm }

Your puppy needs to have a diet of 70% puppy food until he’s 10 months old. The easiest way to feed raw is to use a base product and add protein and other items. I use Honest Kitchen Timely or Preference. Both are available through Amazon.

25 Manoj Jain { 10.23.17 at 8:20 am }

Hi Pat,
We r vegetarians can feed eggs but want to avoid any meat meal for our GR. He is now 6 months old. And we want him to live a healthy life. Pl guide what best we can do for him.
Many thanks

26 pat { 10.23.17 at 3:57 pm }

What are you feeding him now? He needs to be on a large breed puppy food until he is 10 months old. Dogs are omnivores. They have adapted to eat veggies and fruits, etc, but they NEED protein and fat. Are you willing to feed fish?

27 vinci { 11.09.17 at 4:51 am }

Hi Pat, I recently got a golden retriever puppy and she is now 3months old. Iv got a suggestion from a friend to feed my puppy milk powder for adding calcium to her diet…is that a good idea? As iv tried that twice to her meal and she started to have a little swollen red pimple like thing popped up at her butt hole…im not sure if its the milk powder :/ but definitely going to grind her egg shells, sounds more organic!The pet shop recommended royal canin starter pack kibble thats for puppies, and im mixing a little bit of RAWZ freezed dried beef, and cooked chicken meat in her meals. Iv read that its better to skip the kibble and cook all her meals, iv tried that in the first week she came back, with brown rice and chicken and carrots but she had a diarrhea so i had to add kibble back and her poop is now normal. what is your recomendation ? I want my puppy to have a healthy long life, but there are so many opinions out there, not sure which to trust, looking forward to your reply 🙂 thanks a lot!

28 pat { 11.09.17 at 6:51 pm }

My vet who has recently taken a number of nutrition classes, says golden puppies need to get 70% of their calories from a puppie kibble formulated for large breed dogs to ensure joint health. He recommends Anna Maet, Acana, Orijen or Canadae since they are cooked on low temps to preserve their nutrients rather than cooking at high heat and having nutrients poured back over the kibble. You can add other food to her kibble such as cooked eggs, lean meats, yogurt, pumpkin, fish, etc. Don’t mix kibble and raw when you start feeding raw as it takes much longer for the kibble to be digested than the raw. When you start feeding raw I recommend a commercial raw that meets feeding standards. I use K 9 Cravings which is made in Baltimore. For the evening meal I use a dehydrated base food made by Honest Kitchen either Preference or Kindly and add protein and other stuff. It’s what I transitioned my puppy to as well as I fed him this for lunch. My vet believes many goldens have a mild reaction to chicken and suggests beef, turkey or pork. When I’m lazy and in a rush, I feed canned Cannadae food. My dogs don’t eat kibble after puppyhood and I have to admit I transitioned my last pup to my adult feeding when he was 6 months old and he seems to be fine.

29 Joy { 11.11.17 at 9:37 am }

hi pat, would love to receive your recipes on home cooked food for my GR. She’s 13 and has been on kibble but with skin infection issues recently, I’m convinced we need to switch her diet. Appreciate your advice! Thanks

30 pat { 11.12.17 at 12:57 am }

See my recommendation in the above post about using a base diet and adding COOKED proteins and vegetables as seniors cannot easily digest raw foods

31 Jennifer Koch { 11.19.17 at 7:20 pm }

I would love more information on the homemade recipes. I have a 14 month old Golden that i would love to offer more nutritious food for than kibble. Thanks.

32 Yvonne { 11.24.17 at 12:46 am }

I would really appreciated more information on cooking a healthy diet for my GR 9 years old. From time to time she has skin allergies or an upset stomach. Portion sizes are difficult as I do not want to under feed. Thank you very much

33 pat { 11.29.17 at 12:34 pm }

Please email us

34 Jim { 12.29.17 at 4:50 pm }

Hi Pat,
The egg shell for calcium idea is brilliant. Been throwing them in my compost pile for decades,
who knew? I would be most grateful for any receipts for my adult GR and GR puppy. Recalls scare me. Home made has got to be safer. Please help with the correct balanced formula diet. Best regards, Jim in Lewes Delaware

35 pat { 01.01.18 at 9:25 am }

Please email me.

36 pat { 01.01.18 at 9:26 am } Your puppy should be eating 70 % food formulated for a large breed puppy until s/he is 10 months old

37 michele steele { 01.07.18 at 3:09 pm }

Would love some recipes as I am transitioning my 4 golden to a raw food diet.

38 michele steele { 01.07.18 at 3:19 pm }

Looking at changing over my golden diet. Can you please forward me some recipes. Thanks

39 Julia Hogers Bentley { 02.19.18 at 6:51 am }

I would love the homemade dog food recipes.

40 Judy Waters { 03.11.18 at 3:31 pm }

Our golden boy is only four and a rescue. He is very inactive most of the time, and does not want to fetch the ball. He is way overweight and we have had his thyroid and blood work checked out. Please help with a diet. We feed him a cup and a half morning and evening with greenbeans but the weight just doesn’t come off.

41 Judy Waters { 03.11.18 at 3:36 pm }

would love some input as to what this BIG boy should have in his diet, vitamins that might help with energy He is a very tall golden and long as well. Any help would be appreciated to help take the weight off.

42 Judy Waters { 03.11.18 at 3:38 pm }

Thanks for your help

43 pat { 03.12.18 at 6:30 pm }

What food are you feeding him Judy? Also, is he part of a doggy play group or do you have another canine companion?

44 Stacy yates { 03.31.18 at 12:25 am }

Hi! I have a one year old golden that has been having ear infections lately and I suspect a food allergy. I’d love recipe ideas to help him! Thanks!

45 Debby evans { 04.04.18 at 6:10 pm }

Oh Pat if you can send me some of your recipes it would be greatly appreciated. My golden is 15 months old.

46 Barbara Roloff { 04.13.18 at 2:00 pm }

Pat, I have a Golden that was 15 Feb 1st. We adopted her at one yr old. She has cushings disease and just started a liquid medicine 3 days ago for that. Hoping it will help as it is 145.00 per 30 days! plus she has been on phenobarbital for about 10 years for seizures. Samantha is such a sweetie as goldens are. She doesn’t bark- wonderful!! would appreciate it if you could send me a good homemade recipe to make for her. She has food down all day as she nibbles and doesn’t over eat. thank you so much

47 Pat { 04.18.18 at 1:49 pm }


Feed your pup ANY thing she will eat other than the handful of foods that can harm her. Lean meats and eggs and yogurt especially

48 Trixie { 04.24.18 at 12:39 pm }

I prepare chicken/meat/liver with rice. But my 9 months golden just eat the non-veg and leave rice. I am not able to decide on the quantity. I also give her milk. She used to eat banana but not any more. Any suggestions.

49 Rosy { 05.01.18 at 8:27 am }

Out golden boy is just over 3 always had issues with his stomach I think due to the dry food which we only use once a day as we cook for him in the morning please help in advising best things to cook for him and amounts to ensure he is getting the best nutrition thanks Rosy

50 Lori { 05.04.18 at 8:21 pm }

I have a one year old golden and I want to give her the best food. She is training to be my service dog. I have MS. I want her to have a long happy life.

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