A few weeks ago, MaryEllen, the lady who watches Huck at daycare, asked about his diet and what we feed him. I told her the brand name of his kibble and was rather proud of Steven and I for doing our research and choosing such a high quality dog food. However, MaryEllen mentioned that she had recently noticed that Huck's gained a little weight, and there was no denying it, he definitely had, and she wondered if we ever considered switching him to a raw food diet.
And then MaryEllen said, "Feeding dogs the same food everyday would be like you having a bowl of Wheaties for breakfast, lunch, and dinner everyday of your life. Not only would you be bored with your food, but you'd also be nutrient deficient."
Ouch! That really stuck with me, because for someone who is so cautious about what I put into my own body how could I not be concerned about what I was, or more accurately, was not, putting into Huckleberry's!
The very next day I went to my favorite local pet store and asked them to tell me a little about their raw food options. Although they carried many great options, I decided to go with Northwest Naturals. They are local, all natural, and had great reviews!
So what are the benefits of feeding your dog raw food? Almost too many to list! But the most noticeable benefits are:
- a shinier coat
- cleaner teeth and better breath
- healthy skin
- healthier joints
(especially important if you have a pure breed like Huck since they are prone to hip and joint issues!)
- less stool (aka: less mess for you to pick up!)
- optimal body weight
On the back of every package of food, you'll find feeding guidelines so that you know how much to give your dog based on his or her body weight.
Within the first week I could tell Huckleberry had lost a few pounds and was looking more like his lean, yet strong, self! And the reduced stool in the yard has been amazing! Since there are no filler ingredients in this food his body is actually able to use all of it, rather than having no need for it and eliminating the excess through waste.
We soon discovered that we'd have to do supplemental feeding for Huckleberry due to the cost of raw food. (That stuff ain't cheap!) But I still feel like we are doing right by Huck and making the necessary changes so that he can maintain optimal health.
So no more Wheaties everyday for this fur baby! He is one gosh darn spoiled pup, and I wouldn't have it any other way!