Dietary advice for a critically ill dog - McDowell's Herbal Treatments

There are a few steps you can take to provide your critically ill dog with the best possible nutritional support. The ideal diet for a critically ill canine would consists of a variety of fresh meats, bone (if the patient can eat it), offal, fruits, vegetables, some seeds, oats and oils. 

I always advice not to follow the recipes strictly but to use them for some inspiration which foods can be fed. Also, every patient has a different taste and owners have to take this into account. So far I haven't had major questions about this dietary advice and the clients seem to have enough common sense. 

You can feed several meals per day, but a fasting time for at least 12 hours each day is beneficial to reduce oxidative stress that occurs during digestions.

If it is possible feed organic ingredients only to reduce the overall toxin load of the patient. For this reason also use small fish like sardines and mackerels and avoid farmed fish and large fish at the end of the food chain.

For a normally healthy dog grating fruits and vegetables is sufficient. For your critically ill patient I suggest you put all the ingredients freshly together in a food processor to give your dog maximal access to the nutrients.

Adding super foods like blueberries, kelp and sea vegetables, honey, fresh garden herbs, sprouts, wheat grass and spirulina have proven to be extra supportive during a health crisis.

Recipe suggestions for a diet suitable for a critically ill dog;

Recipe suggestion 1 - For 1kg dog food

200g lamb ribs, ( can be fed separately)
200g chicken meat
200g potatoes
100g kale
100g apple
50g parsley
50g sprouts
50g ground sunflower seeds
50g linseed oil
1 heaped teaspoon Spirulina powder
Half a teaspoon of kelp granules
1 level scoop Prancing Pooch
1 level scoop Forever Young

Recipe suggestion 2 - For 1kg dog food

200g ground chicken frames
200g ox heart
200g oats
100g broccoli
100g beetroot
25g Coriander
50g blueberries
25g hemp seeds
50g coconut oil
50g Raw honey
1 level scoop Prancing Pooch
1 level scoop Forever Young
1 heaped teaspoon wheat grass powder
Half a teaspoon of Kelp granules

Recipe suggestion 3 - For 1kg dog food

400g Sardines or Mackerel
200g sweet potatoes
100g carrots
100g spinach
50g cauliflower
25g raspberries
25g basil leaves
50g linseed and millet
50ml olive oil
1 heaped teaspoon Spirulina powder
Half a teaspoon of Kelp
1 level scoop Prancing Pooch
1 level scoop Forever Young

  • If you are concerned that meat is causing a skin or gastrointestinal reaction you might want to start them on a mainly vegetarian diet based on these ingredients:
  • Green Lentils 10%
  • Broccoli, Spinach, Kale 10%
  • Carrot 10%
  • Beetroot 10%
  • Sweet Potato 60%
  • Extra Virgin Coldā€Pressed Coconut Oil
  • Kelp granules or powder, Ground linseed
  • 1 level scoop of Dogestive (for digestive health)

Nicki Wiedmann
Veterinary Herbalist
McDowells Herbal

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McDowell's staff Herbalists can not diagnose your disease or illness. What they can do is offer a herbal program to assist with healing, after you have had advice from your doctor or specialist. If you have unexplained pain or symptoms, seek medical advice.

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