Get in the Game

Last Fall, I was the fortunate beneficiary of my brother-in-law’s generosity. He had a freezer full of plucked, cleaned, and vacuum packed game fowl that he kindly contributed to my raw diet adventures. Best part?

FREE.

Back in October, I was still nervous about feeding raw bones. I thought the smaller, more delicate bones of these game birds might be easier for Pearl and Truman to crunch and less likely to cause an obstruction, particularly if I cut them sufficiently. I was correct.

Pearl and Truman LOVE quail, pheasant and chucker. The dark meat is rich and flavorful. Having been cleaned and packed fresh at the hunting camp, they were full of what nature has to offer a hungry pup–fresh, raw, bloody meat, and bones rich with calcium and the incomparable nutrition of the marrow. These small wild birds were not raised in a massive chicken house, or in a cage, nor fed growth hormones or antibiotics.

I don’t do guns, and I don’t approve of hunting just for the sport of it. But I live in Alabama, and you can’t throw a rock without it landing on a hunter, even if you’re surrounded by women. (And they’ll point their rifle at you for throwing the rock at them, so it’s not advised). Given that reality, if you have a hunter in the family, and you happen to luck into some excess duck or Venison, your dog will love you if you let him Get in the Game.

You can pretty much feed anything from a hunt– Duck, Venison, Quail, Pheasant, Rabbit–to your dog. These protein sources are biologically appropriate for canines. Dogs have consumed these animals from the time of their earliest existence. Just be aware of your dog’s ability to get through a bone. Doubtful a Pug or Pomeranian can manage a deer bone. So, as always, use common sense.

Here’s a recipe for Winter Quail & Sweet Potato (makes 2 meals for a 25 lb dog):

Ingredients:

  • 1 raw Quail (1 Quail is usually about 6 oz)
  • 1/2 small local, organic sweet potato, baked (Hint: I usually bake 2 or 3 sweet potatoes at a time, then keep them in the fridge for use in several meals during the week).
  • 2 oz raw goat’s milk
  • 2 tsp raw, local honey
  • half scoop of digestive enzyme

Directions:

  • Check the bird for birdshot and remove any pellets.
  • Using kitchen shears, cut the meat away from the bone as much as possible. (I do this for my small dogs to assist them because their mouths and teeth are small. This step and the next may not be necessary for a larger dog).
  • Cut the bones of the wings and legs at the joints. Then cut the breast bone in quarters.
  • For 25-lb dog, measure 3oz of meat with bones in the bowl.
  • Add 1/4 (about 1 oz) baked sweet potato, skin removed, and mashed. Sprinkle with digestive enzyme.
  • Add 1 oz raw goat’s milk, and 1 tsp raw honey.
  • Watch your dog try to eat through the bottom of the bowl.

Enjoy!

pugs & kisses,

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Keep it simple, stupid.

In the words of Prince (the Coolest. Ever.)

All I want is your extra time and your ….. KISS!

Love,

The Dog.

I tend to get wrapped up in things I have a passion for, you know? And once I started feeding a Raw food diet, I got excited about the the endless possibilities of food combinations. I even gave some thought to developing my own product line, which may come one day.

But for now, I’m still learning and proactively seeking to educate myself on as many aspects of HOListic nutrition and health as I can.

There for a while, I was preparing complicated recipes, and in the process, I was over-feeding my dogs (and they were happy to oblige my enthusiasm).

I would encourage you to KISS your dog! Keep it simple, stupid! Don’t get overwhelmed or intimidated by this. It can be time consuming. And I certainly understand that not everyone has the luxury of spending 20 minutes preparing a beautiful, multi-colored, nutritionally balanced, fortified bowl full of glory for their dog.

(Ahhhh! the Heavens open and the Angels sing).

You don’t even do that for yourself, right?

That’s why I’ve suggested A+ Answers. It will simplify your life.

I suggested FreshPet early on, which is fine for a few days when you’re gone & someone else has to feed your pup, but it is heat pasteurized and therefore not really raw.

If you are devoted to the convenience of dry kibble and just can’t Go Raw, might I suggest Orijen, or Acana, or even Taste of the Wild? They are high quality, high protein, grain-free dry dog foods.

Then, if you want to gradually wade into feeding raw, add a couple of ounces of raw goat’s milk to the kibble. Or toss a raw chicken wing in the bowl the next time your grilling. When you’re making stew, hold a few ounces of the raw meat out for your pup. If you’re scrambling a big mess of eggs on Saturday morning, beat one for your dog and pour it in his dish.

Add a powdered digestive enzyme, like Prozyme or Total-zymes, which aid in nutrient absorption of cooked foods.

Every now and then, add a teaspoon of raw honey, or raw Apple Cider Vinegar, or both.

Even these little things will make a big difference in your dog’s health.

But if you want to Go RAW, and you’re overwhelmed by fear of feeding the wrong thing or the wrong amount, or of failing to get the right balance, please don’t give up.

Take a look back at the list of What Not to Feed (#WNTF). It is SHORT. The world is your oyster!

You may not be able to balance the nutrition completely with each discrete meal, but over the course of the week or the month, you will be able to balance if you rotate your offerings. Dogs on a raw diet can endure a rotation in protein and vegetables without stomach upset. I’ve been doing it for months without incident.

One protein, one vegetable, one add-in, and digestive enzyme. DONE.

Keep it simple! You can do it!

pugs & kisses

You’ve got questions

They’ve got answers.

Talking about Answers raw pet food.

Dr. Natalie turned us on to it.

She said that because my babies look so freakin awesome, she was hesitant to tell me to change it up. But, she suggested Answers Pet Food as a way to simplify my life a bit.

She used to do what I have been doing, but now she feeds Answers. It is an excellent product, a mixture of high quality meats and produce. The company is family-owned in Pennsylvania, and is environmentally conscious with their production and packaging. Green Certified. No GMO.

There are 3 meat choices — pork, beef, and chicken. I had read that pork was not a good thing to feed dogs, but these folks suggest otherwise. So before we pork it up, I’m going to research it a bit more.

It is truly raw. Not heat or pressure pasteurized. No need for additional vitamin and mineral supplements because they’re in there at the precise amount.

They also sell raw, fermented goat’s milk. It contains added probiotic cultures, honey and organic cinnamon. It contains conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which is known as the cancer fighting fat. It has caprylic acid, which is known for fighting yeast (and should help us with our candida issue). And goat’s milk is a natural antihistamine.

For you cat lovers, they have a cat formula as well.

We are so on board.

While I love creating lovely raw meals for my dogs, sometimes my law practice and other life duties make it hard to plan and prepare. It’s time consuming and expensive. I will feel good about giving this to Pearl and Truman. It’s a bit easier on my wallet, and they love it.

Check their website to learn more and find out where you can buy it. http://www.AnswersPetFood.com We found it at Hollywood Feed at Cahaba Village.

pugs & kisses,

Answers Pet Food detailed beef formula raw food for dogs
Here’s the beef. It comes frozen in a milk carton. Thaw, spoon & serve
A+ Answers pet food raw fermented goats milk
It comes out clumpy, which freaked me out until I read on the carton that it contains curds. Shout out to Little Miss Muffet, yo!

My name is Leuca. I live on the 2nd floor…

Do y’all remember that song from the late ’80’s?

(Yeah, you do. I know it’s spelled wrong.)

(Suzanne Vega. Your earworm for the day. You are so welcome!)

Ever heard of Leucocytosis?

I hadn’t until I started down this RAW path.

There was this French dude, Paul Kouchakoff,  (yes, he was French. Shh. I’m talking) back in the 1930’s who discovered that as soon as cooked or processed food is tasted, white blood cells rush to the intestines, which causes disruption to the immune system.

Why?

The body apparently considers cooked food as a pathogen, freaks out, sounds the alarm, and sets out to destroy it. Whenever the white blood cells rush to deal with cooked food, the rest of the body is left undefended. In a book called Raw Energy, by Leslie and Susannah Kenton, the authors note that leucocytosis is like a red alert, and these constant red alerts several times per day, over and over again, put considerable strain on the immune system.

Hmmm….

That is so weird, right?

When Kouchakoff’s volunteers ate raw foods, the white blood cells did not react. Raw foods leave the white blood cells free to deal with other things, instead of constantly calling the troops to the same region. This conserves energy that is better used to build up the immune system as opposed to constantly having to defend. (Best defense is a good offense, no?)

Don’t freak out. You’re not going to have to avoid the oven for the rest of your life. If you eat something raw first, followed by something cooked, leucocytosis doesn’t happen.

Say what?

It’s the first taste of food that triggers the phenomenon.

So, if you can eat a bite of raw apple, then eat your bacon egg & cheese biscuit from the drive thru, you’ll be better off.

Same for your dog. If you’re feeding something that has been cooked or pasteurized, give your pup a little nibble of apple or carrot or a blade of grass…something raw first. Then feed the cooked food. Your dog will thank you with a more robust immune system.

(Note: you should always give digestive enzyme supplement, such as Prozyme, when feeding cooked food).

pugs & kisses,