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.

March 29, 2011

March 23, 2011

Canned Salmon Dinner

Canned Salmon (wild caught); with bones; some skin removed

Whole Wheat Bread

Wasa Rye Krisp crackers

Chick Peas

Cottage Cheese

March 16, 2011

Snow Storm!

How many almost-12-year-old dogs want to frolic outside in freezing temperatures, during a snowstorm? My home-fed dog does! I'm convinced Gracie's years of eating homemade dog food have kept her exceptionally hale and hardy.

We had a nasty snowstorm last week. Gracie was in seventh heaven! Sometimes I wonder if she isn't part husky, or some other snow-loving dog breed.

When I let her out after breakfast the wind was blowing and the snow was coming down hard. Gracie quickly took her "bathroom break" but instead of hurrying back inside she started pushing and pulling her new basketball around the yard. When I said, "No Gracie, the weather is too bad. You have to come in," she looked up at at me so hopefully. I couldn't let her down. I quickly bundled up and got my camera. I figured if I was going to stand outside and play in freezing weather, I might as well get some good photos.

Here's Gracie waiting for me to kick the basketball she just pushed toward me with her nose.

I kicked the ball to her a few times but I started getting really cold. Gracie didn't seem to mind the cold one bit. She looked so disappointed when I suggested going inside, I just had to stay outside with her a little longer.

She ran and played and was so happy.

At one point she practically disappeared into all the snow kicked up by our game.

After about 15 minutes I'd had enough. The weather was too rough for me and my camera, but not for my dog!

I resorted to bribery and told Gracie to come on in for a treat. That got her attention. After she followed me inside I gave her a piece of crusty French bread --- one of her favorite snacks.

March 9, 2011

Doggie Chef Meatloaf Breakfast

(Click here to a previous post showing how we make Doggie Chef Meatloaf.)

Doggie Chef Meatloaf

Whole Wheat Bread

White Rice



March 2, 2011

New Bread For Gracie

As mentioned in previous posts, I often include whole wheat bread in Gracie's meals. Either homemade (click here for a recipe for homemade Doggie Chef Bread) or store bought. Click here to see my post about the store bought bread (Brownberry Natural Wheat) I've fed Gracie most often in recent years.

Cooked grains, like oatmeal and brown rice, are a lot cheaper (and probably a lot healthier) than store bought bread. Yet sometimes the convenience of store bought bread can't be beat.

I recently learned about sprouted grain bread made by Food For Life and decided to give it a try. I bought two different loaves: Seven Sprouted Grains bread and Ezeikiel 4:9 Sesame bread. They're both in the freezer section at my grocery store. I suppose they're frozen to maintain freshness, as they contain no preservatives. I prefer the Ezeikiel 4:9 Sesame bread because the Sprouted Grain bread contains corn. I'd rather not feed Gracie corn. I don't think she digests it well or that it offers her much nutritional value.

Brownberry Natural Wheat bread contains no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives. That's why I've used it for so long. However, I always thought it contained too much sodium and sugar.
Here's a comparison of Brownberry Natural Wheat bread and Food for Life Ezeikiel 4:9 Sesame bread:

Brownberry Natural Wheat Bread,  1 36-gram slice:
Sodium: 240 milligrams
Sugars: 2 grams
Dietary Fiber: 2 grams
Protein: 3 grams
Calories: 100
Plus added vitamins and nutrients like Vitamin A, the B vitamins, Vitamin E and Iron.

Food For Life Ezekiel 4:9 Sesame bread, 1 34-gram slice:
Sodium: 80 milligrams
Sugars: 0 grams
Dietary Fiber: 3 grams
Protein: 4 grams
Calories: 80

The Food for Life Ezekiel 4:9 Sesame bread contains less sodium, less sugar, more fiber and more protein. Any nutrients the Ezekiel 4:9 Sesame bread contains comes directly from the ingredients. To me that's a big plus even though, overall, the bread  contains less Vitamin A, Calcium, Vitamin E, Iron, etc... than Brownberry Natural Wheat Bread. I think nutrients naturally occurring in foods are better for the body (canine or human) than nutrient supplements added to foods.

The Ezekiel Sesame bread is made from: organic sprouted 100% whole wheat, filtered water, organic sprouted barley, organic sprouted millet, organic malted barley, organic sprouted lentils, organic sprouted soybeans, organic sprouted spelt, fresh yeast, organic wheat gluten, sea salt and organic sesame seeds.

It's always a bit scary to change my dog's diet. She's been doing so well for so long. Yet I believe every good Doggie Chef should strive to constantly improve their pet's diet. I was never comfortable with the amounts of sodium and sugar in the Brownberry Natural Wheat bread. I'll still use the Brownberry bread sometimes, but I feel better about feeding Gracie the Food For Life bread when I don't have time to make homemade bread.