Ask Dr Mark: Pet Nutrition

Home cooked meals for your pets.  Do you do it? Do you have the time to do it?  Can you afford to do it?

Nutrition is definitely one of the key factors that determines your pet's health no matter where you live, and providing a nutritious diet is an important part of being a responsible pet owner.

A growing number of dog owners are pushing manufactured pet food to the back of the pantry and are opting to prepare home cooked meals for their four-legged friends.  Why? Because knowing exactly what your pet is consuming can give you added peace of mind and reassurance that their getting what they need to maintain optimal health; and it's super tasty and cheaper too!

Additionally it also gives many pet owners a good feeling inside to know that they are doing something extra for their beloved pets. By preparing food we have control over the quality of ingredients that we feed our animals. Many people make a conscience effort to reduce the amounts of preservatives, artificial colouring and flavours in their own food and would like to for their pets also.

I asked Dr Mark, VetShopMax's resident vet, how to go about preparing a home cooked meal for your pet and these are his TOP FIVE TIPS:
  • Research diet recipes online.
  • Talk to your vet. He or she will be able to make specific recommendations for your pet. They may recommend adding supplements such as Omega 3 & 6 essential fatty acids, calcium and vitamins if required.
  • Know what not to feed your pets. Many common human foods are harmful to our pets. For example chocolate, onions, raisins, macadamia nuts, avocado and coffee.
  • Feed some raw. Try feeding some of the meat raw. Consider raw bones such as chicken necks and brisket bones. Also raw fruits and vegetables such as apple and carrot.
  • Mix it up. Don’t stick to the same diet day in and day out. Try cooking many different foods for your pets. By giving variety we minimise the chance of missing any essential nutrients in our pet’s diet.

Here are a couple of recipes that you can use to get started:

Rover’s Rissoles:
1 cup hamburger meat stir-fried in 1 tbsp canola oil
2 boiled eggs chopped
½ cup cooked plain oatmeal
1 jar baby food green beans
1 jar baby food carrots
2 Tbsp cottage cheese. 
Combine all ingredients and serve at room temperature.

Canine’s Casserole:
1 cup boiled poultry chopped
½ cup cooked brown rice
½ cup boiled mixed vegetables
3 to 4 Tbsp unsalted chicken broth.
Stir together and serve at room temperature.


If you have any favorite recipes that you are currently feeding your pets I invite you to send them in to me at I will check each recipe and post the best ones on our website.

Until next time,


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