Gracie is now 13 years old!

For nine years she's eaten REAL, HOMEMADE FOOD, NOT commercial dog food. This blog shows how easy it is to be a DOGGIE CHEF and how healthy a home-fed dog can be.

June 30, 2009

Brushing Tools

A good Doggie Chef knows it takes more than homemade food to keep a dog's skin and coat healthy. Regular grooming is important too!

I use the tools shown above to keep Gracie's coat looking nice. The toothbrush and comb are used to clean accumulated hair out of the brush.  I recommend this type of brush, with an attached strap you can slip onto your hand. The one I use has natural bristles. I keep two so I can wash and dry one each bath day and still have a clean, dry one ready to use.

When I first adopted Gracie she shed a lot. Back then I tried using a certain kind of grooming brush on Gracie --- the kind with thin metal bristles on a rectangular head. Gracie did not like it one bit! She flinched whenever I started brushing her and wriggled away. Then I tried the brush on my own hair and understood why. It prickled and hurt so much! I couldn't believe a brush like that was even sold for use on pets. I guess it's only for pets with very thick coats.

I try to brush Gracie daily but sometimes I'll miss a day. Brushing is a good time to check out your dog's body for any injuries, growths or problems that might otherwise go unnoticed. It's easy to rush through brushing but it can be a great time to give your beloved dog some well deserved TLC. Gracie loves to get brushed and will stretch out and sigh while I'm doing it. I try to make it last a while when there's time. A careful, thorough brushing benefits a dog's skin and helps distribute oils through a dog's coat to make it soft and shiny.

June 23, 2009

Ground Beef Dinner 6-23-09

Ground beef cooked in corn oil

Hard boiled egg white

Whole wheat bread

Oatmeal cooked in milk

Sweet potato

Cooked, ground carrot

Corn oil

Eggshell powder

June 16, 2009

Chicken Organ Meats Breakfast 6-16-09

Chicken organ meats (hearts, liver and gizzard)

Whole wheat bread

Brown rice

Green peas


Corn oil

Bone meal powder

June 9, 2009

Chicken-Calf Liver Dinner 6-9-09


Calf liver cooked in olive oil

Homemade wheat bread

Oatmeal cooked in milk


June 2, 2009


I believe in the health benefits of yogurt so I include some in Gracie's diet. She eats it happily.
I used to feed Gracie full-fat yogurt. As she's grown older I've switched to nonfat and fat free yogurt most of the time.

My favorite is Greek style yogurt and I usually buy the Stonyfield brand. It's unbelievably thick and creamy for a fat-free yogurt.  A serving for Gracie equals about 2 tablespoons, or 1/8 cup.

One Gracie-sized serving of Stonyfield Greek style yogurt contains:
Protein: Close to 3 grams
Calcium:  3.75 percent of a human's recommended daily value for calcium (based on a 2,000 calorie-a-day diet).
Sodium: Close to 12 milligrams, or .5 percent of a human's recommended daily value for sodium (based on a 2,000 calorie-a-day diet).

Sugar:  1.125 grams (which is quite a bit of sugar).
According to the Stonyfield website, it's Greek style Oikos yogurt contains, "five live and active cultures including L. acidophilus, bifidus, and L. casei."

I also feed Gracie Dannon All Natural Nonfat Plain Yogurt. It's not as thick as Greek style yogurt. I sometimes strain it in a yogurt strainer to make it thicker.

One Gracie-sized serving of Dannon All Natural Nonfat Plain Yogurt contains:
Protein: About 1.5 grams of protein
Calcium: 5 percent of a human's recommended daily value for calcium (based on a 2,000 calorie-a-day diet)
Sodium: 20 milligrams, or just less than 1 percent of a human's recommended daily value for sodium (based on a 2,000 calorie-a-day diet)

Sugar: 2 grams (even more sugar, per ounce, than the Greek style yogurt).
According to the Dannon website, the yogurt contains, "active yogurt cultures including L. acidophilus."

Since the sugar content concerns me, I don't feed Gracie yogurt every day. I add it to her meals a few times each week, whenever we have yogurt in the house. It provides extra calcium and protein and I think the active yogurt cultures are good for her digestive health.

****POST UPDATE****: I discovered a new dairy food to add to Gracie's meals. It provides more protein and calcium than both yogurts mentioned above, and less sugar than one of the yogurts mentioned above. Find out what it is in my November 16, 2010 post.