Chapter 40 – Gabby Patties


Older dogs, especially those with CRF/CRI, can become picky eaters. Though her bloodwork was fine up until the end, Gabby became pickier as time went on and I think part of this was because I was spoiling her with great food to encourage her to eat when she wasn’t feeling 100%.

When the doctors suggested it was time for a renal diet I tried canned food, but she did not go for it.  I then tried a mixture of half rice or pastina noodles and half beef or chicken, and she did not like that either.  She would eat a plate of beef or chicken, but if she smelled noodles or rice she wasn’t interested.

I knew she needed more than protein in her diet, both for nutritional reasons and to ease the load on her kidneys. The question was, how to get her to eat it?

This led to the invention of… the Gabby Patty.  I called it this because Gabby and patty rhyme, I made them for her, and it sounds like Krabby Patties from Spongebob!

Here is the recipe and how it is prepared.  If you have an older dog that is a kidney patient and/or a fussy eater, it may work for you too.

I used a Char-Broil infrared gas grill.  If you have a grill it will work best when you have grates that are close together, as shown above. Otherwise you may want to put a cast iron griddle or plate on the grill and cook them that way.  I tried cooking them on the stove or with the broilier, but they did not turn out as well.  I think the grilling added an irresistible flavor and created the uniform consistency in the cooked patty.
Gabby Patties Recipe

1 pound ground beef
1 pound boiled pastina noodles
2 large eggs
Two teaspoons Animal Essentials Seaweed calcium
2 Pet Vites vitamins, ground
1/2 teaspoon Aluminum hydroxide phosphate binder
You can cut the amounts down by 1/2 if you want to prepare smaller portions, or double to create larger portions.  Just keep the proportions the same.

In a large bowl, mix ground beef, the cooked noodles and the egg, kneading with your hands. Start with a cup of boiled noodles and knead them in, then keep adding pastina noodles until they will no longer stick to the meat/egg mixture.  Typically this will yield a patty that is about 60% beef and 40% noodles.  It’s a bit higher in protein than an idea kidney diet, which is about 50% protein, but it is much better than feeding your dog 100% protein.  Add the calcium and knead it in to the mixture as well until it is evenly distributed.  Cover the bowl and put the mix in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

While the raw mixture is in the refrigerator, preheat your grill on high and oil it with canola or another high temperature oil.

Remove the bowl from the refrigerator and make the mixture into big patties. Place the patties on the hot, oiled grill for 8 minutes, then flip, turn down heat to medium high and cook for another 8 minutes. The patties may break up a bit on the grill surface.  This is normal.

Take the patties off the grill and place into a large, clean bowl. Break them up with a potato masher and add the Pet Vites and phosphate binder, mix and wait fifteen minutes before serving.  Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator and re-heated.

When prepared this way, you can’t tell where the meat ends and noodles begin, the patty has one single consistency and appearance.  

Gabby ate it up!