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This is the most comprehensive Cane Corso homemade dog food guide.
Owning a Cane Corso is a big responsibility. Not only do you have to make sure they’re taken on walks and given enough toys to chew, but you also have to make sure their diet is balanced, especially if you are cooking for them at home.
But with so much information out there, it can be hard to know where to start. This guide will help you create a balanced diet for your Cane Corso, including recipes and nutritional advice. Plus, we answer some of the most common questions about feeding dogs homemade food.
Cane Corso Homemade Dog Food Benefits
Here are some the top benefits of cooking homemade meals for your Cane Corso.
- Healthy eating habits
- Quality control
- More affordable
- Portion size control
- Fresh ingredients
- Dietary requirements can be met
Board-certified veterinary nutritionists and diplomates of the American College of Veterinary Nutrition, Jennifer A. Larsen, DVM, MS, Ph.D., and Joe Bartges, DVM, Ph.D., also agree that switching to homemade dog food comes with great advantages such as diet management, appeasing picky eaters, bond-building, combatting food intolerance and allergies issues, and avoid concern over food recalls1.
Further benefits include preventing many conditions associated with a poor diet, such as obesity, poor skin, coat condition, pancreatitis, diabetes, and reduced immunity.
Research shows that dogs that eat fresh food diets are linked to a 20% longer lifespan than those who don’t. A year-long study of 522 dogs by Lippert and Sapy found that dogs fed high-quality, freshly made, real food had an average life expectancy of 13.1 years versus just 10.4 years for dogs fed commercially processed pet food.
Home-cooked meals for dogs also ensure that your pup always eats fresh, wholesome, and allergen-free foods as no chemicals, additives, or fillers are used when cooking at home, hence preventing allergies.
More importantly, you have control over the ingredients used. You can pick safe ingredients that you know won’t trigger allergies in your Cane Corso. If you are unsure what ingredients may cause sensitivities or allergies in your pet, we advise doing an At-Home Food Dog Allergy Test before selecting the ingredients for their next meal.
Cane Corso Homemade Dog Food Risks
These are the top risks you should be aware of and avoid when cooking your Cane Corso.
- Not understanding the nutritional needs of Cane Corso
- Using inadequate or dangerous recipes
- Not preparing a balanced meal
- Using unsafe or harmful ingredients
- Not understanding the impact of food and dietary changes
- Not understanding your dog’s life stages (puppies, adults & senior) nutritional needs
- Neglecting your dog’s health conditions
A study by the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary found that most homemade dog food recipes lack key essential nutrients, and other recipes used dangerously high levels of some nutrients.
Even more shocking, research published in The Journal of Nutritional Science concluded 48% of homemade dog diets had an imprecise determination of ingredients and quantities and that 71.3 % of dog owners did know how much food to serve per meal. What’s more alarming is that 30.4% of the pet parents admitted to purposely changing the recipe, 40% of owners didn’t measure the proportions of the ingredients well enough, and 28.3% didn’t use any of the recommended vitamins, minerals, or amino acid.
In a survey published in the journal Preventive Veterinary Medicine, vets reported 97% of obesity cases in dogs could be traced to how owners fed and played with their pets.
It’s vital to understand that dogs’ nutritional requirements are unique. We recommend consulting with a veterinary nutritionist who can address your Cane Corso’s dietary requirements and help you craft nutritionally balanced recipes or recommend a homemade food service for convenience.
Cane Corso Nutritional Guidelines to Follow
The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AFFCO), the entity regulating dog food nutritional value in commercial dog food, states there are six indispensable nutrients that all dog meals require to support life and function in dogs and provide a balanced and healthy diet.
A proper homemade diet should also consider your pup’s weight, health conditions, size, and activity level.
Your Cane Corso will grow strong and healthy if these six components are present. Below is a breakdown of each nutrient and its importance.
|Protein||Chicken, lamb, turkey, beef, fish, yogurt and cooked eggs||Builds and repairs muscles and other body tissues. Needed to make new skin cells, grow hair, hormones, enzymes and more.
|Carbohydrates||Oats, brown rice, potatoes, and whole wheat||Source of energy for dogs and supplies glucose needed by the brain, nervous system and other critical organs for normal function.
|Fat||From meats and oils such as olive or sunflower oil, fish oil, canola oils among others||Responsible for providing quality energy. Necessary for the normal development and function of body cells, nerves, muscles, and body tissues
|Minerals||Calcium, potassium, sodium, magnesium, iron, zinc, etc.||Common functions include the formation of bone and cartilage, nerve and muscle function, fluid balance regulation, the transportation of oxygen in the bloodstream and hormone production.
|Water||Water||Hydration is critical in dogs. A dog that loses too much water (10% to 15% of the water in his body) can get very sick and even die. Ensure they have water available throughout the day.
|Vitamins||A, B, C, D, E, and K||Keeps skin and coat healthy, strengthens bones and teeth, and gives them the overall energy that they need to function.
You may also want to add a multivitamin like Zesty Paws Multivitamin Chews to ensure your Cane Corso pup is getting the recommended balance of vitamins and minerals.
Always consult with your vet before making any changes to your dog’s diet. We suggest consulting a veterinary nutritionist to help create a diet plan for your Cane Corso. Formulating a completely balanced diet without professional help can be tedious for some dog parents.
If you need more advice on Cane Corso nutrition, an excellent resource is Home-Prepared Dog & Cat Diets: the Healthful Alternative by Donald R. Strombeck, DVM, Ph.D., a long-time expert in veterinary medicine. This book it’s considered by many pet nutritionists to be the Bible of healthy homemade dog nutrition.
Health Dietary Changes In Cane Corso
If your Cane Corso is experiencing any of the issues below, adjusting his diet may help address these problems.
|Condition||Dietary Needs & Adjustments
|Coat Color Changes||Increase amino acids which can be found in protein (>75 grams per 1000 calories)|
|Concurrent GI Signs||Avoid foods with tryptamine and histamine such as dairy or fermented vegetables and meats (yes, this includes bacon); try a simple ingredient food trial
|Chronic Itching and Dermatitis||Fortify the diet with Vitamin E, B Vitamins, Zinc, omega-6 and the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil; add a dog probiotic; try a simple ingredient food trial|
|Dull Coat and Scaling||Adjust EPA and DHA levels in the diet (added fish oil being the most common way); try a food that has added zinc
|Dandruff and Crustiness||Add Zinc and Vitamin A levels
If your Cane Corso has skin allergies or joint pain, adding dog fish oil may be a good idea. The AKC states that fish oil promotes healthier coats by reducing itchiness and flakiness in the skin due to its omega-3 fatty acid content. Other significant effects include promoting improved immunity (especially against cancer) while strengthening heart health in dogs.
Cane Corso Calorie Requirements
The caloric needs of dogs are based on their weight. An adult Cane Corso usually weighs between 88 and 110 pounds, which means most Carne Corso needs between 1778 and 2103 calories a day.
Make sure you follow the 10% rule when feeding treats to your dog. Food would equal 90% of the total calories and treat the remaining 10%.
For instance, if a Cane Corso weighs 100 lbs. he would need 1959 calories per day. For those eating treats, that’s 1763 calories in food (90%) and 196 in treats (10%). Usually, most full-grown dogs eat two meals per day. However, since Cane Corso is prone to bloating, divide his daily meals into three meals. You need to split 1763 into three meals of 588 calories each.
You can use this calculator to find the exact caloric needs for your dog based on his weight.
Pregnant or lactating Cane Corso may need up to 2 to 4 times the amount of food they normally need as the mother’s energy requirements increase after delivery and during lactation. Be sure to talk to your vet.
Homemade Dog Food For Cane Corso Puppies
A Cane Corso puppy diet is not the same as an adult Cane Corso’s.
Puppies need higher protein, fat, calcium, and phosphorus compared to adult dogs. Too few (or too many) of these nutrients can cause deficiencies, stunted growth, or lifelong complications.
According to the American College of Veterinary Nutrition (ACVN), puppies need about twice as many calories per pound of body weight as an adult dog of the same breed.
Most people worry that their puppy requires more food and calorie intake every day because they are rapidly growing. This isn’t necessarily the truth. Dr. Justin Shmalberg, DVM, a veterinary nutritionist at Nom Nom, advises that to promote normal growth, most puppies need about the same number of calories and the same type of food, from 4 months to 12 months of age.
Cane Corso puppies should eat 3 to 4 times a day. When your puppy is a bit older (6 – 12 months), you can switch to 2 to 3 meals daily at scheduled intervals.
For proper growth and development, it is not advised to skip meals while your puppy is growing and developing. As our nutritional guidelines previously outlined, a puppy’s diet needs to include a balance of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, minerals, water, and vitamins.
Homemade Dog Food Delivery Service
If you love your Cane Corso but can’t find the time to cook their meals or don’t know anything about dog nutrition, a homemade dog food delivery service like Open Farm is an excellent choice.
Open Farm gently cooked recipes offer the convenience of a homemade dog food delivery service. Gently Cooked is a home-cooked style meal made with 100% human-grade, humanely raised ingredients made in a human-grade facility. It’s home cooking for your pet, without the cooking!
All their meats are certified Humane and Global Animal Partnership certified. Their seafood is Ocean Wise certified, and fruits and veggies are non-GMO.
Even better, Open Farm recipes are formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by the AAFCO dog food nutrient profiles for maintenance.
Their tasty meat recipes combine superfoods like non-GMO leafy greens, pumpkin, turmeric, chia seeds, coconut oil, and more.
This brand’s great because they don’t use any nasty chemicals found in kibble, antibiotics, added growth hormones, wheat, corn, potatoes, peas, or legumes. Plus, their gradual cooking process removes bacteria while retaining more flavor, nutrients, and ingredients.
You don’t even need to worry about portions. All meals come in pre-portioned pouches for easy serving and are shipped frozen to preserve freshness.
With Open Farm, your dog enjoys the benefits of freshly homemade meals without the hassles of cooking, shopping for the ingredients, and balancing nutrients. With the time you’ve saved by not cooking, you can focus more energy on neighborhood walks or training.
The company offers a 10% discount for new members and free shipping for orders over $50!
On top of the 10% discount, our readers have access to save 20% off their first Open Farm order. Just use the coupon code “CANINE20” at check out. Click this link to get your Cane Corso’s first homemade meal.
Cane Corso Homemade Food Tips
Here are some pointers on important considerations when getting ready to prepare home-cooked food for Cane Corso dogs
- Set a consistent feeding schedule.
- Feed your Cane Corso two times a day (puppies under 12 months, 3 to 4 times a day, check with your veterinarian).
- Meal prep weekly or monthly.
- Measure and control portion sizes depending on your dog’s calorie needs.
- Keep meals frozen for 2 to 3 months or refrigerated for about 5 days.
- Make a new batch when the food supply is getting low.
- If you want to feed different recipes, you can make multiple batches and color code by ingredients, rotating out the different meals.
- Prepare the food in bulk and portion it into containers (one container per meal makes it extra-easy).
- Increase portions appropriately as your puppy grows.
- Monitor weight to make sure you are feeding the proper amount of calories.
How To Cook Homemade Food For Cane Corso ( Video)
Check out this step-by-step video on how to cook your first meal with your dog.
Best Cane Corso Homemade Dog Food Recipes
We’ve compiled our favorite Cane Corso homemade dog food recipes to share with you.
We’ve also added a special treat recipe for Cane Corso that is not only delightful and tasty, but it’s packed with awesome health benefits. We kid you not; this recipe can do a lot for your pup’s health and wellness. It has our favorite secret ingredient, dog CBD oil.
Note: Please consult with your pet’s veterinarian and use personal judgment when applying this information to your dog’s diet. The recipes below do not include serving size because portion sizes will vary depending on breed, weight, activity level, age, and health of your dog. A common recommendation is to feed your dog a comparable amount of ounces/cups to what you would usually feed in kibble BUT check with your vet to be certain.
CBD-Infused Dog Treats
CBD dog treats are perfect for helping with seizures, anxiety, arthritis, inflammation, pain, wellness, preventive care, and many other health problems. (read our dog CBD guide to learn more)
Treat your Cane Corso with these nutritious, therapeutic, and delicious homemade CBD oil dog treats. They are made with Pumpkin, a great source of essential vitamins and minerals (like vitamin A, potassium, vitamin C, and iron). Pumpkin also aids with digestion and hydration. Coconut is added for skin and coat, digestion, and helps reduce allergic reactions.
Just be sure to check with your vet before to make sure CBD is safe for your pup and you are giving the right dosage.
You can also purchase already made CBD dog treats so your pup can experience all the benefits of CBD.
- 2 1/2 cups gluten-free flour
- 1/2 cup oats
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 Tbsp coconut sugar
- 1 apple, cored and grated
- 1/2 cup carrots, peeled and grated
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1/3 cup olive or coconut oil
- 1/2 cup water
- dash of sea salt
- 120 mg CBD oil
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Grease a dog cookie baking tray with coconut oil.
- Core and grate the apples, then peel and grate the carrots.
- In a medium-sized bowl, combine the gluten-free flour, oats, and coconut sugar. In another medium-sized bowl, beat the egg. Then, add coconut oil, water, and grated apples and carrots.
- Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients bowl; mix completely. Finally, add CBD oil and mix once more.
- Using a Tbsp measuring spoon, portion out the dog biscuits and press into the dog treat baking pan. Bake, 32-37 minutes or until the biscuits are firm and golden-brown on the outside.
- Store in an air-tight container.
Recipe from: Truth Theory
Macaroni, Quinoa Turkey Recipe
3 lbs ground turkey (or any protein)
1 cup uncooked millet (or any other whole grain: quinoa, rice, pasta)
1 tbs olive oil
1 carrot, shredded
1 zucchini, shredded
1 squash, shredded
1 apple, chopped
1 tbsp calcium powder
1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes or coconut oil
1/2 cup pumpkin puree (canned or homemade)
- Bring 1 cup of whole-grain to boil in a pot of water. I overcook it so that it’s soft and easily digestible. Drain.
- While that’s boiling, shred/chop the veggies.
- Cook ground turkey with olive oil and drain excess juices.
- Mix everything together—no need to cook the veggies. The cooked turkey and whole grain will warm them up a bit.
- Store in Tupperware or ziplock bags and freeze! It makes enough for around 2 weeks of meals (Fira weighs 14 lbs).
Recipe from: WhereSTheFrenchie
- 4 chicken breasts
- 1/2 cup of green beans, chopped
- 1/2 cup of carrots, chopped
- 1/2 cup of broccoli, chopped
- 1/2 cup rolled oats.
- 4 cups of low-salt chicken broth
- Remove excess fat from the chicken breasts and cut the breasts into small nickel-sized chunks.
- Cook the chicken breasts in a non-stick skillet over medium heat until no longer pink.
- Add the chicken, vegetables rolled oats, and chicken broth to a large pot and cook over medium heat until the carrots are tender – about 15 minutes.
- Allow cooling before serving.
- Store leftover casserole portions in the fridge for up to five days.
Recipe from: Money Crashers
Scooby’s Organic Stew
This organic homemade food recipe will make your Cane Corso drool while you cook it. This perfect combination of veggies, meat, and rice is loaded with iron from fresh protein and vitamins and can be stored in your fridge for most of the week (or frozen and heated up later).
- 1 1/2 cups brown rice
- 2 carrots, shredded
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 zucchini, shredded
- 3 pounds ground turkey
- 1/2 cup peas, canned or frozen
- 3 cups baby spinach, chopped
- Place ingredients in a slow cooker in the order listed, covering the chicken entirely with vegetables
- Cook 5 hours on high or 8 hours on low
- Remove from slow cooker, shred chicken and stir into rice and veggie mixture until evenly distributed.
- Store covered in the fridge for up to three days or freeze in single-serve portions.
Recipe from: Happy & Jummy
If you are interested in more homemade dog food recipes and cooking options for your Cane Corso, cookbooks can come in handy to have a range of dog food recipes. Our top pick is Home Cooking for Your Dog: 75 Holistic Recipes for a Healthier Dog.
Best Homemade Dog Food Cooking Practices
Be sure that your Cane Corso’s meals are safe and nutritious by following these best practices.
- Never use unsafe or toxic ingredients for dogs
- Use only boneless meats (no cooked bones)
- Cook all animal products thoroughly to kill harmful bacteria
- Cook all grains, beans, and starchy vegetables to make them easier to digest
- Research every ingredient before using it for safety
- Follow recipes as instructed
- Add supplements to their diet if needed
- Run any questions by a vet nutritionist
What Foods Should Your Cane Corso Never Eat?
Not all ingredients are safe for dogs. Here is a list of foods your Cane Corso should never be fed.
- Onions and garlic
- Coffee, tea, and other caffeine
- Grapes and raisins
- Macadamia nuts
- Raw bread dough
Check out this handy list for a comprehensive list of all foods to avoid. Please print it out and put it on your refrigerator as a reminder.
Cane Corso Raw Diet (BARF)
Veterinarian and nutritionist Dr. Ian Billinghurst is the precursor of BARF (Biologically Appropriate Raw Food).
A raw dog diet is meant to be similar to the diet of what dogs ate in the wild millions of years ago. Raw dog foods usually include organs, muscle, whole or ground bones, raw eggs, fresh fruits and vegetables, and dairy.
Several kinds of raw dog foods are available, including homemade raw dog food and store-bought (frozen, freeze-dried, and dehydrated).
Preparing a BARF diet for your Cane Corso requires extra care and planning since the risk of contamination and nutritional imbalance is higher when handling raw foods.
Raw dog diets are gaining popularity because of their fantastic health benefits for teeth, coat, digestion, and allergies. Read our raw dog food diet article if you are interested in learning more about the benefits and risks, and get the best commercial raw food diet for your Cane Corso.
Monitor Weight And Health
It’s not easy to understand the ins and outs of dog nutrition, especially if you’re cooking for your pet. How can you ensure that your homemade meals comply with your dog’s nutritional needs?
The weight of a dog is an essential indicator of its health. This is simple for pet parents to keep track of and document every month at home.
Providing the appropriate quality and quantity of dog food to your Cane Corso makes maintaining a healthy weight easier. If your dog’s weight increases or decreases rapidly, it might be due to food-related health issues.
Skin or coat issues, excessive tiredness, allergies, weight loss, malnutrition, and obesity can be caused by unbalanced and insufficient meal plans. If you detect any of these symptoms while feeding your dog meals, stop doing it immediately and seek expert advice.
Contact your local veterinarian to ensure that all of your dog’s meals are nutritionally adequate.
Other Food Alternatives
Cane Corso owners who want to feed their dog a healthy and tasty diet but also cost-effective should consider making homemade dog food.
Homemade foods are healthier than store-bought kibble. They can be tailored to your specific pet’s taste preferences and dietary needs for less money.
Cooking dog food for a Cane Corso is one way to ensure their diet is as healthy. With just a little bit of time and effort, you can ensure your Cane Corso is getting all the nutrients they need to stay strong and fit.
If you have a Cane Corso who suffers from allergies or other health problems related to his diet, it might be worth looking into plant-based diets. The demand for vegan dog food is growing for a good reason.
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