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Saturday, November 20, 2010

Dog food

After a walk in the morning, I hit the books. The thermostat in the house isn't working, so it's 62oF. Tub time with a stack of research and my notebook beside the bathtub, while the dogs eat lunch in their crates.

I pick up a second airline soft-sided carry-on for $15. The dogs come along, sitting in their Outward Hound seats, looking out the window. Bella immediately hops in, curls up, and watches from a comfy position. Spike's not so sure. I have to lift him in, snug his clip-on leash, and make sure he's not able to jump out. He likes the DogGone Device better, getting in. But it looks so much less comfy. I'm hoping he'll get used to the seat soon.

We're close to the Maltby dog park, so we swing by. We've never traversed the acres of trails and forest. And MUD. Time for some good fun and quick walking as I unclip the leashes and they take off like black rockets down the trails. Both dogs trot their way across boggy dirt and leaves without hesitation. A happy Rottweiler chases back and forth from his owner, sniffing and playing around Spike and Bella. No harm done. He scares Bella the first time he bounds up, and I'm always startled as he pushes past me on the narrow trail through the woods. Bella gets used to his antics before I do.

We walk a mile or two across open meadows and gravel walks, finishing on a clean lawn to wipe dog feet and my muddy boots.

The rain starts to pelt the car windshield as we drive away. Whew, good timing. Spike and Bella settle into their seats for the 20 minute ride home.

I see a clip online about dog food - its chemicals don't have to be listed, and even "natural" and "organic" pet food often includes restaurant grease, the 4 Ds of the pet industry (dead, disabled, dying, diseased), and euthanized dogs and cats from shelters along with the unprocessed drug that kills them. Ugh.

When I check homemade dog food recipes, they boil down to leftovers from a typical American meal (NO ONIONS!) Most recipes approximate these proportions:

1/2 c. cooked ground or other meat, cooked. Can of fish would be fine, too.
2 eggs, optional for added protein
 4 c. cooked rice or other carbs like oatmeal
2 tbsp. oil
1 c. cooked veges (potatoes, Brussel sprouts, carrots, beans, etc.)
dog vitamins, optional

Mix together. Serve or freeze separate portions for later.

It would be easy to cook for them as well for us when I make our company/friends meal on Sundays. Our discriminating Bella, who has gotten used to our dry dog food and eats every last kibble so Spike won't take it? She would be VERY happy with the change. Spike? If he can chew and swallow it, he doesn't seem to care what it tastes like.

Good doggies!

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