What you should know about brown rice for dogs. How to cook it, why it’s better than white rice in homemade dog food and when you have a dog that shouldn’t eat it at all.
Dogs need meat for protein and fat.
Healthy fats provide energy for your canine.
If you believe you need carbohydrates for energy, rest assured that dogs do NOT.
So why serve any grains?
To be blunt, only because it costs less than an all meat/organ/bone home made meal.
I have lots to say on the subject but first, here's how to prepare rice for dogs.
Simple but time consuming, you use twice the amount of water as rice. Bring water to a boil; add rice; cover and simmer for 45 minutes. Yes, I said 45 minutes and don't buy brown rice that takes less time because it would have to be precooked and the nutrients just aren't going to be there.
Cooked rice will keep in the fridge easily for 3 - 5 days, so you have it ready to mix with the meat and veggies of your choice.
(And don't forget a bit of garlic!)
One cup of brown rice has:
Note: Dogs are individuals, just like us. Many dogs do better without grains at all. It's always a good idea to do a poop patrol to see what's getting digested. (See dog poop health.) If you see whole rice in your dogs feces, he is not digesting it so there is no point in feeding it. Cooked whole oats or quinoa are both good grains to try. Quinoa being the healthiest of all grains.
In a nutshell, white rice has no nutrients and has absolutely no place in your dog's diet.
Brown rice is not only better for you, it's better for the environment than white rice. Now at the risk of boring you, I want to explain why one is good and one is not.
Rice goes through a variety of processes before it's ready for cooking. After harvesting, the seeds are run through a rice huller for milling to remove the outer grain husks. After this process, you're left with brown rice. Nice and simple.
To create white rice, there's added steps. The germ and the inner husk (bran) is removed, the grain is then polished, usually using glucose or talc. (Yuck!)
The added steps to make white rice removes the most of the nutrients and fiber. This turns it into what I call a DEAD FOOD.
To make matters worse, synthetic nutrients are added. These man made vitamins and minerals may not be synthesized by the body and therefore treated as a toxin!
Phew, that was a mouthful. Now we're done with that little lecture.
Include brown rice for dogs when making your own dog food if:
Years ago I was told by my vet to use rice to stop diarrhea. I believed it. I also believed the fiber helped clean the intestinal tract.
I no longer believe in using rice for diarrhea but lots of people are still holding on to that old rule. You know, that "mix rice with hamburger" for a meal rule? Forget it.
If it's occasional diarrhea, simply fast your dog so the body can fix the problem.
For more on that including the why, visit fasting for health.
If your dog has chronic diarrhea, that's a different ballgame.
Remember, variety is the spice of life and health.
My ex-husband watched me feed the dogs raw meat and bones to our dogs for a few years. I used brown rice with pureed veggies on alternate meals. I did it because feeding 5 dogs over 75 lbs a totally raw diet was impossible for my income at the time.
Each of us kept two dogs when we separated.
Unfortunately he decided to ignore everything I taught him. He fed them brown rice
He truly believed brown rice for dogs was healthy as a stand alone meal or added to commercial food. Please don't be like him.
My sweet Helen (pictured above) had to be euthanized 18 months after I moved away. She had gone blind and was acting 'funny'.
There is no
doubt in my mind the overload of carbohydrates from the combination of
kibble and brown rice caused diabetes and the resulting blindness.
Please remember brown rice for dogs should only comprise a small amount of their diet and that real dog nutrition cures far more than drugs ever will. There are hundreds of pages on this website to help you, classes in written and audio formats and wonderful supplements you can purchase.
I want you to gain the insights it took me 30 years to uncover so your dogs live a long, full, healthy life.
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And because of my Helen, I'm going to repeat this one more time. Do NOT serve brown rice for dogs mixed in kibble! Not ever. Dogs need a minimum of 40% protein which few dog foods provide.