Super Dog Food: DIY Fermented Vegetables

Before thinking we’re getting all wiggeda wiggeda whack by suggesting vegetables are essential in your dog’s diet – remember that in the wild dogs mostly eat fresh meat. With the consumption of that fresh Fermented vegetables for dogsmeat – dogs also eat the stomach and rumen contents of their prey. This includes pre-digested plant matter – i.e. partially fermented vegetable matter.

20% – 40% of your dog’s diet should include vegies and while we aren’t suggesting that your dog should wolf down a plate of spinach – there are some excellent ways to incorporate vegetables and probiotics in a way that your dog will love!

It’s possible to buy prepared fermented veggies, but many people find that it’s cheaper and easier to make them at home

 

 

Suggested vegetables to ferment for your dog:

  • Green beans
  • Green peas
  • Beetroot
  • Carrots

 

Vegetables you should not feed your dog:

  • Garlic or onion
  • Eggplant, potatoes, capsicum & eggplant (nightshade family)
  • Broccoli, cabbage & cauliflower – while the jury is still out on these vegies for dogs, there has been some anecdotal evidence that says that feeding these foods MAY cause hypothyroidism. 

 

Making lacto-fermented vegetables for your dog

Even though the whole process might seem long and complex,fermenting food at home takes nothing but a few basic instruments and ingredients. At its basis, most lacto-fermented foods are nothing more than whole, chopped, sliced or grated vegetables placed in a brine of salt and water for a period of time at room temperature to let the beneficial bacteria develop.

The important thing to keep in mind is that the vegetables should stay submerged all along to prevent mold from forming.

Google will be your friend when finding lacto fermentation recipes and you’ll probably come across a lot of recipes calling for fresh whey as a starter for the ferment, but simply using salt gives out the same desired result.

You don’t have to use much salt either and in fact you could even ferment food without salt, but using at least some salt prevents undesired bacteria from gaining power over the lactobacillus. The quantity of salt to use is up to you, but 3 tablespoons per 2 kilos of vegetables is a good ratio to follow.

 

The fermentation time will vary based on a lot of factors: temperature, starter used, quantity of salt, and nature of the vegetable or fruit. The best way to go about it when trying original combinations is to taste it along the process and to go with the taste as the best indicator. When it tastes acidic enough for your liking, it’s ready to be enjoyed and placed in the refrigerator to stop the fermentation. Taste it after 3 days, then taste it 3 days later and so on. The finished product will keep for months when stored in the refrigerator.

How to feed fermented vegetables to your dog

Some dogs willingly eat fermented vegetables, while others need a bit of encouragement. For fussier fermented beetroot for dogsdogs,  you might need to puree the vegies before adding them to their food.

Feeding guidelines:   1 to 3 teaspoons per 10 kilos of body weight. However it’s important to start with very small amounts and build up gradually – otherwise you might upset their tummies and have some terribly potent smells around the house 😉

 

 

 

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