In my book, it’s not just OK to feed your dog some fresh food; it’s vital.
When I was a new mother, I was horrified at the idea of filling up my baby’s little tummy with what they called baby cereal. You know — the stuff coming out of the box that looks like shredded plastic. And when you mix it with water, you get something that looks like papier-mâché paste.
Nope. Not doing it. Going to give baby real food. (And hence the book Feeding the Whole Family.)
When I became a proud dog owner, and started scooping brown pebbles into the bowl each day, I had baby-food flashbacks. The canine stuff smelled better than the baby cereal, but it looked even worse.
The last thing I needed were more things to do, but I just couldn’t bring myself to give my dog kibble alone. So I did some research, and figured out which fresh foods I could give my dog to supplement her diet.
Most of the items listed below are found in dog treats and in some high-priced kibble. But there they have been dehydrated and pulverized beyond recognition. I say, give Fido the real McCoy.
Don’t go crazy and switch your kibble-eatin’ mutt to a total real-food diet all at once. But do consider adding a tablespoon or two of fresh food to her bowl each day. Her coat will shine and her breath will be fresher.
Bonus for summer: Not only can you make a little fresh food for your best canine friend, you can make your own flea spray instead of dousing your doggy in chemicals. It’s easy; here we show you how on Cookus Interruptus.
Cynthia Lair is an assistant professor at Bastyr University, where she is the director of culinary curriculum. She can be found in print via her two cookbooks, Feeding the Whole Family and Feeding the Young Athlete, and online in the Web cooking show Cookus Interruptus. Watch her TEDx Rainier talk “How to Cut an Onion.”
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