Over a decade ago, I met David Wave-o Howell, the then maker of Wave-o’s Pet Food. My dogs fell in absolute love with his frozen Raw Foods Diet. When Wave-o’s Pet Foods closed it’s doors after 17 years in the business of feeding canines, David was kind enough to share his Raw Foods recipe with me…and to give me permission to share it with you!
This recipe is well-balanced nutritionally and it’s not super fancy. It’s designed with cost in mind, so the ingredients are relatively easy to come by and reasonably priced. I love it for those reasons, but also for how I’ve seen it improve my dogs’ health over the years. My pups have grown healthy and strong from puppy to adult on this diet. With a few small herbal additives, they’ve stayed healthy well into their senior years, too.
If you’ve got a picky eater, feel free to substitute ingredients as makes sense for your furry friend. Brown Rice makes a good substitute for dogs who don’t tolerate gluten or oats well.
This recipe makes approximately 50 pounds. That’s a month’s worth in my household. Scale it down as makes sense for your freezer space and canine appetites. If you make the 3 mixes, Healthy Powder, Canine Vitamix, and Youthful Canine Powder, ahead of time, scaling this recipe up or down to fit your needs will be easier. Plus, making them ahead of time will decrease the time it takes on Dog Food Making Day. If possible, make the oats ahead of time, too.
- 20 lbs. ground Turkey
- 6 cups dry rolled oats (cooked with 12 cups water)
- 5 lbs. raw carrots
- 1 bunch (approximately 1-3 lbs) raw kale
- 1 bunch (approximately 1-3 lbs) raw collard greens
- 1 bunch (approximately 1-3 lbs) raw mustard greens
- 4 lbs. raw spinach
- 5 lbs. frozen peas, thawed
- 1-2 small garlic cloves or a pinch of dried garlic powder (optional)
- 12 eggs (with or without shells)
- 2 cups Grape Seed Oil
- 2 cups Healthy Powder (1 cup kelp granules, 2 cups Soy Lecithin, 3 cups Nutritional Yeast, mixed well and stored in a cool, dry place)
- 2 cups Canine Vitamix (2 cups dry nettle leaves, 1 cup dried rosehips or elderberry, 1 cup dried Alfalfa leaves, 1 cup dried Oatstraw, mixed well and stored in a cool, dry place)
- 1/2-1 cup Youthful Canine Powder (1 cup each powdered burdock root, dandelion root, and haws mixed well and stored in a cool, dry place)–optional, but recommended for middle-aged to senior dogs
- Fresh water as needed for chopping and food processing
- 2 Very Large Mixing Bowls
- Food processor
- Mixing spoons
- Plastic containers or other containers for storage of finished food
- Freezer (for food storage)
- Cook the oats. You can do this the night before so they’re cooled to the touch when it’s time to mix them into the food.
- If you haven’t already done so, mix the Healthy Powder by combining all ingredients in one large container.
- If you haven’t already done so, mix the Canine Vitamix by combining all ingredients in one large container.
- If you haven’t already done so, mix the Youthful Canine Powder by combining all ingredients into one quart-sized container.
- Using the food processor, grind the greens (Kale, Collards, and Mustard) and the garlic to a very fine texture, adding water to make a slurry. Add the slurry to one Very Large mixing bowl and mix well. This will take several batches for most food processors.
- Using the food processor, grind the spinach to a fine texture, adding water as needed to make a slurry, and add it to the Very Large mixing bowl. Add the chopped spinach to the Very Large mixing bowl and mix well.
- If you want to include the eggs shells, add the eggs to the spinach as you chop it. If not, add the eggs directly to the Very Large mixing bowl and mix well.
- Chop the carrots roughly, then use the food processor to grind them to a meal. Add water as needed so the carrots process properly. Add them to the Very Large mixing bowl and mix well.
- Using the food processor, grind the thawed peas into a meal using enough water to ensure they process properly. Add them to the Very Large mixing bowl and mix well.
- Now that all the vegetables are processed, mix them well in the Very Large mixing bowl.
- Divide the vegetable mixture across the two Very Large mixing bowls.
- Add one cup Healthy powder to each mixing bowl (2 cups total), and mix well.
- Add 1 cup Canine Vitamix to each mixing bowl (2 cups total) and mix well.
- Add 1/4-1/2 cup Youthful Canine Powder blend to each mixing bowl (1/2-1 cup total) and mix well. (optional)
- Add half the cooked oats to one mixing bowl and half to the other. Mix them well. (At this point, you may want to switch to using your hands to mix as it gets very hard to do a thorough job with a spoon from here on out.)
- Add 1 cup Grapeseed oil (2 cups total) to each mixing bowl and mix well.
- Add 10 pounds ground turkey to each mixing bowl and mix well.
- Using the scale, weigh the amount of food you desire into each plastic container. For large dogs, one pound per container works well. For smaller dogs, half-pound increments work well.
- Cover and freeze your finished dog food.
Storage and Use
Store Wave-O’s Dog Food in the freezer until you’re ready to use it. You can thaw one serving at a time on the counter or in the microwave.
The amount you serve your pup will vary based on his or her age, size, and general eating habits. For reference, my 45-50 pound, middle-aged to senior basset hounds ate 1 pound total per day. My now 85-pound mixed hunting/sporting breed puppy started off eating about 1/2 pound per day and quickly scaled up to 3 pounds per day when he was growing. By his second birthday, he was eating 2 pounds per day.