Bone broth is a kitchen staple in many households when illness strikes. It is warm, nourishing and packed with benefits for us and our pets! You can make make bone broth with minimal ingredients or added vegetables and herbs for flavor (and extra benefits). Traditionally made with chicken or beef, bone broth provides the body with essential vitamins, minerals and amino acids. Bone broth boosts the immune system, helps to cleanse the liver and stimulates cell growth. Furthermore, it contains high amounts of collagen, which supports joints, tendons, ligaments and muscles. Not only is it great for us, but bone broth is a great meal for pets that are ill, recovering from digestive irritation, or even at the end of their time on Earth. It also makes a great supplement to add into meals too!

Recipe for Bone Broth:

First, we recommend using organic ingredients whenever possible. Unfortunately, the saying “you are what you eat” isn’t fully accurate. Toxins are absorbed in meat when animals raised for consumption have been fed poor quality diets, pumped with hormones, or raised in fields sprayed with pesticides. So if your meat was exposed to harmful substances, then you and your pet could be absorbing toxic residue too.  So the phrase “you are what you eat… and what it ate too” is a good motto to live by. To prevent further illness or upset, opt for hormone free, pasture raised, grass fed and free range meat. This helps your pet absorb as many quality nutrients for optimal benefits.

Secondly, you can use meat on the bone or just bones.  I typically like to use the bones from leftover rotisserie chicken. Instead of going in the trash, those bones go in a crock pot! Set aside additional ingredients like salt and pepper, apple cider vinegar, garlic (powder or cloves), and herbs like rosemary, sage, thyme, oregano, and basil. Consult with your vet when preparing your own food for your dog. Although packed with nutrients, broth is not a nutritionally balanced meal for pets.

Put your bones in the crockpot and cover them fully with water. Add a splash or tablespoon of apple cider vinegar (ACV) to the broth. The acidity helps pull the minerals out of the bone marrow, which adds additional nutrients to your broth. You can also use lemon juice if you don’t have any ACV on hand. Simmer your broth on a low setting for at least 24 hours. This helps ensure that the most nutritional benefits have been extracted from the bones.

You can add in your seasonings at any time. Oppositely, you don’t have to include seasonings at all! Stir your broth occasionally and remove any meat after 6-8 hours but leave the bones to continue simmering. You can feed your pets the meat and skin, but be extremely careful when separating them from bone. Never feed your pets cooked bones!

Feeding your Bone Broth:

Some smaller pieces may dissolve into your broth while larger pieces may just soften. It is extremely important that you strain your broth thoroughly before serving. Feeding cooked bones to your pet can be a health hazard! Cooked bones can break into sharp pieces and cause gastrointestinal punctures. After straining, pour a warm cup for yourself but let your broth cool before feeding it to your cat or dog. If it turns into a jelly like consistency when cooled, then you have a good broth! Serve by itself or add to to existing food (to soften kibble or compliment a raw diet). Additionally, bone broth makes a great frozen treat that your pets will love!

Do you make bone broth for your pets? Let us know in the comments!

About The Author Giselle Rodriguez

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