Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Cooking for Izzie

For those days when I'm too tired to cook, we've found a chef for Izzie.
I have given up trying to get Izzie to eat dog food. I have two books on cooking for your dog and since she just loves whatever I eat, I think her last years should not involve nightly fights (which she usually wins) over what she eats. Tonight she had roasted chicken, brown rice and some bing cherries (one of the few fruits she likes). This week we've had ground lamb patties, sweet potato, Swiss chard, pork tenderloin, sweet corn, summer squash (you get the idea) She doesn't like eggplant, though. I've been sprinkling vitamins on her meat and have seen a definite improvement in her ability to do stairs and jumping on furniture this past week. We had a good long walk today and she managed it without balking. So her dried food is just there for snacking, should she choose to want some.

Izzie was four when we became companions. I don't know much about her history before then, but it's been a real struggle for the past seven years to get her to eat anything except people food. There are a few veggies she doesn't like, but mostly if I fix meat or fish, something starchy and some veggies she will wolf it down. She really likes the cabbage family of vegetables and sweet potatoes. Pasta is her favorite starch, although rice will do if it has butter on it. One of the books said to give her equal portions of meat and vegetable and double that of starch, which is what I do.

Here's a recipe for Canine Lasagna that Izzie (and her doggie friends) like:
1 pound (minced) ground turkey cooked until browned.
1-15 oz. jar spaghetti sauce
some garlic powder (optional)
oregano (optional)
1 lb. elbow macaroni cooked
1 lb low fat cottage cheese
2 cups grated cheddar cheese.

Put a third of the spaghetti sauce on the bottom of a casserole dish (add oregano and garlic to sauce if using)
  1. Top that with 1/2 the pasta
  2. Spread half the cottage cheese and then half the cheddar on top of the pasta.
  3. Add another third of the spaghetti sauce.
Repeat 1,2,3.
Cover with aluminum foil
Bake for about 30-40 minutes in a moderate oven (350°F)

I usually cut this into portions and freeze some for later use.

It's not bad people food either, although I prefer it with some onions cooked. Izzie tolerates onions quite well, but a lot of dogs don't. Izzie had an Australian Shepherd friend named Sydney that decided I was ok after I fixed her this one day.


Leonardo Ricardo said...

This is hysterically funny...thanks for sharing the life and times of Isabelle the doggie with good taste!


motheramelia said...

Izzie does keep me amused (and cooking healthy). She has the mentality of a two-year old and that includes a lot of "no I won't."

Brian R said...

I know I am anti-dog this week although realise it should be anti incompetent human owners. However just as well I do not own a dog, let alone one like Izzie as my cooking mainly consists of remove from freezer and place in microwave. Fancy an Australian Shepherd dog being named Sydney LOL

motheramelia said...

Sydney was a great dog. She was a show dog in her younger years and had one blue eye and one green one. Her daughter, Daisy is Izzie's age, but it was Sydney that Izzie respected. When we went to visit Izzie would go rub noses with Sydney and hang around with her. Near the end of Sydney's life when Sydney couldn't walk much, Izzie would lie down next to Sydney instead of joining the rest of us on our walk.

Having Izzie as a companion has been a bit of a trial as well as a great joy. She is extremely stubborn and has serious abandonment issues. I would guess these traits are some of the reasons why she had two owners before me. In the first month we were together I tried 7 or 8 different dog foods. The animal shelter was delighted with the left overs.