June 25, 2017

Bone Broth for Dogs (and a little something for humans too)


A couple of weeks ago, I saw a video by Dr. Karen Becker on how she makes bone broth for her dog. I meant to make some for Bartles and just got around to doing it today. I wasn't planning on making a blog post out of it but I recently had my computer reformatted (because it was slower than a turtle) and upgraded to Photoshop CC 2017 (wha? is this newness!) and added a few new photo filters from VSCO. The point being that I have found joy in taking pictures and editing them again and while I am exhausted beyond measure (I'll share in another post), I took lots of pictures of our day in making bone broth for Mr. B and our guest pups, Spootie and Clover (we always ask permission first when feeding things to our guest dogs - some dogs are on a strict diet or have allergies and can't have anything other than what they are currently eating, while others welcome us to give their dog what we make). 

The video from Dr. Karen Becker is here and for anyone who is interested in making bone broth for your dog, I highly recommend sitting through the video and listen to her give a full explanation on making it. 


We bought a 5.5 pound whole chicken from Giant. We normally get meat and vegetables for our dogs (and sometimes us, although not all the time) from Whole Foods, but we were pressed for time and so Yangkyu went over to a grocery store near our home. 

I had taken it out of its packaging and washed it under running water and realized afterwards that the stock pot was too far away for me to put it in. I am not too keen on raw chicken juice dripping all over my countertops. I also have never handled a 5.5 pound whole chicken before and while I was contemplating how to transfer this chicken to the stock pot without getting chicken juice all over, I was slowly but surely beginning to realize the uncomfortable feeling of raw whole chicken in my hands. I promptly gave a shriek and asked Yangkyu to hurry over to bring the stock pot near me before I dropped the chicken in the sink. While I was freaking out, I somehow managed to thank the chicken for playing a part in helping Bartles feel better and give him a nutritious meal. Some of our animal friends make those kinds of sacrifices for our other animal friends.



To make our bone broth, we filled our stock pot with 1 gallon of water and a teaspoon of Bragg's apple cider vinegar. If you listen to the video by Dr. Karen Becker, you'll see that vinegar plays a role in extracting all the good nutrients from the bones. That is really the goal in making these broths -- so that dogs will get the health benefit and have something tasty as well. 

We put ours on medium heat for about 4.5 hours, stirring it a few times, and the meat eventually start ed to fall off the bones. At about 4.5 hours the meat was completely off the bone (by itself while I was stirring and not me pulling it off). 

From here, I carefully spooned out all, and I mean ALL, the small and big pieces of bone and skin into another pot to make a second bath of broth. I really spent time (a good 20 minutes) fishing the bones out because it takes time to get all the pieces out. Dogs should never be fed cooked bone as it is harmful to them. So please please please, make sure you take careful time doing this. Even when you are ready to feed them, just do a double check. It is certainly better to be safe than sorry. 




I saved the stock pot with the cooked meat and broth to feed to Bartles, Spootie and Clover for dinner and also took some out for Yangkyu and I to eat. 

I filled the new pot with all the bones and skin with 12 cups of water and again a teaspoon of Bragg's apple cider vinegar (it's usually 1 teaspoon of vinegar per 1 gallon of water, but I just improvised) and it is currently simmering on low heat as I write this blog post. I will likely cook it for 24 hours. Once that is done, I will again carefully fish out any remaining bones and fragments and save the bone broth to give to Bartles as part of his healthy diet. 





As for us -- I added some vegetables (onions, carrots, cabbages, kale) with some salt and pepper and garlic and cooked it on low for another 40 minutes. I haven't had a chance to eat it yet, but Yangkyu did and I seriously heard happy grunts as he gobbled it down. Yay. So a great way to get a healthy meal for dogs and humans using one whole chicken. 


 // Stock pot on the bottom left is the cooked meat with the first batch of bone broth. Pot on the bottom right is the new broth in the making with all the bones and skin fished out of the first stock pot. Top right pot is cooked meat and broth with added vegetables, salt, pepper and garlic for human consumption. // 


Happy eating everyone! 

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