When it comes to our pooches, we always want to do what is best, and that usually comes with having the knowledge about a dog’s diet.
The food we feed them is no exception, as we want to give them the best nutrients possible so they can live a long, full and healthy life, just like us humans!
When it comes to cooking chicken for a dog, there are a few methods you can use. You can boil it, grill it, or for the healthiest option, you can bake it. But whichever method you choose, care should always be taken when feeding chicken to a dog.
Below, we’ll explore these issues in more detail and cover everything you need to know about preparing chicken for your dog.
Should We Feed a Dog a Human-Grade Diet?
One thing we may want to try is feeding our dogs a human-grade diet, rather than buying ready-made meat-filled dog tins.
This could be a good choice if you want to know exactly what is going in your dog’s diet, and could even be a good substitute for certain days of the week.
Why Chicken Is a Good Choice for a Dog
Chicken is regularly chosen as a food for a dog because it is a fantastic choice if you want to add lean protein to their diet. It is an excellent addition to their diet because it plays a role in forming brand-new skin cells, helping them to build new muscle tissue and to help keep their soft hair growing.
The protein in chicken also gives the dog energy and a strong immune system which is perfect during those colder months or times when they may be feeling under the weather.
Chicken Includes Omega-6 and Glucosamine
Another addition to eating chicken is omega-6 which is a fatty acid that is vital in a dog’s wellbeing. It not only helps with reproduction and growth, but also the function of the immune system, their skin and having a lovely, healthy coat.
Lastly, the chicken is full of glucosamine which is essential for the dog’s joints such as tendons, ligaments and cartilage – with cartilage being a shock absorber.
How Often It Can Be Ate by a Dog
Just like with us humans, eating certain foods is best in moderation. Even though you can feed a dog a chicken-exclusive diet, it may cause your dog to reject other food types.
It also does not provide your dog with all the beneficial nutrients such as minerals and vitamins it needs for a healthy lifestyle. These are things you cannot find in chicken, so it is best to provide them with a balanced, all-round diet.
How Much a Week to Feed Your Dog Chicken
With this in mind, aim to feed your dog chicken around once to three times a week. For an extra special treat, add other sources of food such as rice and veggies to add extra health benefits. They will really enjoy the flavors!
If you are looking to change your dog’s diet quite dramatically, remember to consult a vet before making any big changes.
The Things You Need to Know Before Feeding a Dog Chicken
What we have learnt is that chicken is a great source of food for a dog, but just like with a lot of things, it comes with its own risks. Here are things to look out for before feeding your dog this delicious treat:
- Do Not Feed a Dog Chicken Along with the Bones
Even though dogs are known for eating an animal’s bone, keep chicken bones out of the dog’s meal because they are soft and can easily split.
They are just too small and present a choking hazard, as well as the possibility of puncturing the dog’s stomach or intestines.
- Salmonella and Other Bacteria May Be Present In Raw Chicken
Bacteria that can cause an upset stomach or illnesses may be present if the chicken is not cooked well enough. So to avoid this, cook the chicken thoroughly.
- Keep the Cooked Chicken Plain
Keeping the cooked chicken plain will be best for your dog. That means no special seasoning, garlic, onions and strictly nothing from the local fast food joint.
Dogs find onion and garlic toxic and should not be fed them in any form; raw, cooked, fried or powdered.
- Chicken Breast Is Best
It provides your dog a low-fat piece of meat which is much more healthier for your dog than full-fat. A lot of fatty foods may cause pancreatitis, so it is best to avoid fattier foods altogether.
- Watch Out for Allergies
Chicken is a high allergy for dogs, so keep this in mind if you do not know whether your dog is tolerant or not yet.
If you find that your dog is suffering from a chicken allergy, remove the food and contact your vet for further advice. Other foods include dairy, beef, egg, wheat, lamb, pork, rabbit, soy and fish – amongst others.
Dogs Who May Have a Sensitive Stomach
If your pooch has a sensitive stomach and you still watch to feed him chicken, then pairing it with some white rice should help settle his poor stomach. Keep it simple by not adding anything to the rice, and mix it into the chicken.
Do note that white rice should be used instead of brown rice because dogs find it much more difficult to digest, which will only add to the dogs discomfort.
How To Boil Chicken
Dogs absolutely love the taste of plain boiled chicken, unlike us who prefer a bit of seasoning. Their stomachs would not do well if they ate chicken like us, so always remember to keep it simple and tasty.
Here is a quick step-by-step to boiling delicious chicken for your hungry dog:
- Using chicken breasts, place them in a medium-sized pot and fill with water.
- Cover the pot with a lid and bring the water to a boil. It should be bubbling.
- Keep the chicken boiling over high heat for 12 minutes or until it is completely cooked.
- Once it is cooked thoroughly (without being overdone), shred the chicken and allow it to cool down to avoid any burning of the mouth.
- Give your dog a small portion of the chicken with its meal and store leftovers in the fridge for up to four days. Never give your dog chicken that smells or looks off.
How To Bake Chicken
If you want to do more than just boil chicken, you can also try baking it. It will not change the flavor, but it does give you a different method option when cooking the chicken for your beloved dog.
- Set your oven to 400º F and let it warm up as you prepare the chicken.
- Place the chicken breast in an oven-safe container that has been a little oiled to avoid the chicken from sticking to the surface and sides.
- Put the chicken in the oven for 20-30 minutes, making sure it cooks through thoroughly.
Can A Dog Eat Raw Chicken?
It is not recommended to feed your dog raw chicken due to the potential of bacterial infections and salmonella, though there is a controversial growing trend towards feeding dogs raw food which includes raw chicken.
What Is A Raw Food Dog Diet?
To put it simply, it is feeding your dog uncooked food. This could be:
- Meat still on the bone
- Raw eggs
- Veggies such as spinach or broccoli
- Livers or kidney
Adopting Raw Food Into Your Dog’s Diet
If raw food is something you are wanting to adopt, speak with your vet first for professional advice about your dog’s diet.
You can also add a variety of nutrients into his diet another way, such as by feeding him cooked food like veggies. This could be brussel sprouts, sweet potatoes and potatoes, broccoli, carrots, celery, peas (though not tinned), and sweetcorn (cut off the cob).
Human-grade food like these veggies are fine to feed dogs, but do keep in mind that they are best left as treats for when you want to spoil your pooch.
They are full of fibre which is great for your dog’s digestive system, however, too much will also affect their digestive system.
Chicken is ultimately an excellent choice when it comes to a healthy meal for our dogs, but as with everything else, it is best fed in moderation, or teamed up with their regular food.
It is a great source of protein, omega-6 and glucosamine, all of which add beneficial nutrients to a dog’s diet. For an extra helping of dog-friendly nutrients like minerals and vitamins, try adding veggies mixed in with the chicken.
Cooking it is easy and simple, especially since all it needs to be is plain without any added ingredients. Adding it into your dog’s diet for an exciting treat is a great way to give him something different to try.