Sweet, sweet Nectar of the Gods. Why you should add raw honey to your dog’s diet.

sweet-as-honey-1550169I have a wicked bad sweet tooth. Fortunately my pack does not share my addiction. Well, except for Daisy. That gal loves her sweets too! I guess that contributed to her shelter name, Honey.

These past few months we have been testing a dog specific product known as K9 Honey. I’m afraid I have been eating just as much of it as I have feed the pups. We all LOVE it! I have always added honey here and there to the pups’ food but after digging a little deeper Raw Honey will now be a regular part of their diet. And mine!

Raw honey is honey that is extracted straight from the comb and has nothing added to it. It has not been heated, treated or pasteurized. With raw honey you get all of the bee-keeping-11-1491032medicinal properties nature intended. If you can, try to find a local, reputable bee keeper so that you know you are getting a good product. You can also buy from your local health food store or online from companies such as K9 Honey. K9 Honey – Honey for Dogs blends bee pollen from nine geographical regions across the United States. This makes it a great option for those who travel with dogs with allergy issues exposing their dogs to a wide variety of pollen rather than just a localized set.

Raw Honey contains antioxidants, protein, carbohydrates, iron, copper, manganese, silica, chlorine, calcium, potassium, sodium, phosphorus, aluminum and magnesium. It also contains powerful nutrients such as vitamin B complex and vitamins A, C, D, E and K! Processed honey has been heated a process which kills off the health giving enzymes that raw honey contains, so be sure to reach for the pure stuff over the cheaper alternative. On top of all of these benefits, raw honey also possesses antibacterial and antimicrobial properties.

Have I convinced you yet?

For thousands of years raw honey has been used as a natural remedy to help cure a whole slew of maladies. It can help:

  1. Relieve allergy symptoms. Just like us, many of our dogs suffer from environmental allergies. Raw honey contains traces of pollen. Feeding your dog small amounts of local pollen each week allows her system to develop an immunity over time. Although this is not a complete cure for your dog’s allergy, it has been shown to reduce symptoms.
  2. Immunity Booster
  3. Reduce symptoms of kennel cough. Honey has long been known to sooth irritated throats.
  4. Improve digestive function – think Enzymes! Some veterinarians claim that raw honey can also help sooth stomach ulcers since it contains antibacterial properties. Thus it can help kill the bacteria causing the ulcer.
  5. Prevent infection and cell damage
  6. Increase energy levels – also helps with shock and a great pick me up when sick. Honey is a sugar. Sugar boosts energy.
  7. Relieve stress
  8. Wound healing – Used topically. Clinical trials show that applying honey as a wound dressing can eliminate bacterial infections, reduce inflammation and increase the growth of new skin.
  9. Improved mobility in arthritic dogs

We add a dollop of raw honey to the pups meals at least once a week. I have noticed it has helped with the big dogs’ allergies. We have had less goopy eyes and less itching since adding the sweet nectar into meals. It seems to be helping with my old lady, Nakia’s joints as well. She absolutely loves the K9 Honey!

puppy dishOk, ok you’ve convinced me. So, how much should I add to my dog’s meal?

1/4 tsp per 20 lbs. Some people say to feed daily others weekly. Because I often struggle keeping some of my girls from becoming chunky monkeys I give raw honey once a week.

Honey contains a lot of carbohydrates so you want to be careful feeding too much. Dogs with a compromised immune system or dogs under a year old should not have raw honey. Honey can contain botulism spores and as a caution so should not given to young puppies or dogs who are experiencing any illness.

Special thanks to K9 Honey!



Rodney Habib and the IACP Educational Conference

Hello there. So, it’s been just a little while since I last wrote. I am ashamed to say its been nearly 4 years. As many of you know, I am a professional dog trainer and I started my business approximately 5 years ago. Things took off and I am sad to say that in the craziness this blog was put to the wayside. Unfortunately so did my dogs diets as well as my own. Enough is enough! I have a new found commitment to health especially for my dogs!

Rainy and Hobbes

Best buds, puppies Rainy (>1 year) and Hobbes (1.5 years)

About this time last year I adopted a new puppy, Rainy. Rainy is now just over a year old and will eat pretty much anything I put in front of her. She is basically a walking garbage disposal just like little Daisy. Sure makes feeding her easy. The key is not over feeding. Then on the other end of the spectrum we have Nakia, Rose and Sensi the cat who are SUPER picky! And right in the middle we have my boyfriends dog, Hobbes,  a beautiful red Doberman. So now we have 5 dogs and a cat to feed…oh and did I mention I also currently have 16 chickens? All that and with all the dogs who come into our care with the business it almost seems like all we do all day is feed the hordes. Why am I telling you all this? I guess to try to help you understand why I fell back into the ease of kibble. BUT NO MORE! As you may guess, feeding this many dogs a raw diet takes up A LOT of fridge and freezer space. So, I found a used mini fridge on Facebook Market Place (negotiated down from his asking price of $75 to $45. Quite proud of myself!) which I will be picking up today and have been stocking up on meat, supplements, Tupperware, etc. Sooo…keep an eye out for more posts to come. I promise you will not have to wait another 4 years for the next one.


With all that being said, on to today’s actual post. This last week my boyfriend (who also happens to be my employee) and I attended the IACP Educational Conference in St. Louis, Missouri. No not the Insane Clown Posse conference, the International Association of Canine Professionals. Basically 4 days of dog talk and fun! While there I had the privilege to see Rodney Habib speak. If you have not seen any of this guys YouTube videos. I highly suggest checking them out. If you follow our Facebook page you have more than likely viewed one of his videos. I re-post them a lot.

Rodney Habib

Rodney Habib speaking at the IACP Educational Conference

Speaking the first day, I was ecstatic to see his presentation. I have been a fan for quite a while and the topic he choose sounded very interesting. K9 Bio Hacks for a Better Brain and Body. He spoke quite a bit about the ingredients of most dog food kibble on the market today. Did you know, the average bag of dog food contains 40%-70% carbs and starches? That includes grain-free bags! He spoke of the amount of sugar in a bag of dog food and the results were absolutely shocking. Here is the link for a video by Rodney Habib discussing the sugar content of a few major brands of dog food, including some that are prescription diets. With all of this, it’s no wonder so many pets today are obese.

So, WHAT ARE the 5 Bio Hacks for a Better Body and Brain according to Rodney Habib?

  1. ADD HUMAN FOOD – as a trainer, it always makes me sad when people tell me veggiesmixduring a consultation, “don’t worry we don’t feed Fluffy human food”. Many people don’t understand that what we really want to hear is that you are not feeding Fluffy from the table and that you are feeding Fluffy fresh meat, fruits, and vegetables. You’d be surprised to hear how many people feed Fluffy, “a Wendy’s kid’s meal and Twinkies for dessert”. Or something along these lines.
    Pack hikes in the mountains

    Dogs exercising their minds and their bodies hiking in the mountains with a pack and following their pack leader.

    and no, letting your dog run around in the back yard doesn’t count. That is unless your back yard is 5+ acres, then possibly.

  3. DOGS FED LESS LIVE LONGER – “Study findings revealed that the median lifespan of the lean-fed dogs was extended by 15%, or almost 2 years”! Except for the chihuahuas we fast our dogs…well kind of. I always feel guilty so it’s technically just a bone day where they receive some kind of weight bearing bone to chew on.


    Slide from Rodney’s Presentation

  4. MIX COCONUT OIL WITH OMEGA-3s – Now this one was a surprise to me. I had heard that it was bad to feed the two oils together as they counter act one another. However, upon more research it seems that it is more beneficial to feed them together. Rodney also talk liking fish sources with shorter life spans, like anchovies or sardines because these have less time to absorb the pollutants from our oceans.
  5. CHANGE THE DIET – Assuming you don’t feed any raw food at all at the moment and are reading out of either curiosity or research, Rodney Habib suggests that feeding even a little raw or fresh food can make a big difference. He claims that even changing 20% of the diet to fresh food can vastly lower your dog’s chance of disease.

I highly recommend checking out Rodney Habib’s YouTube channel. He has some really great information, recipes, etc on there. I also recommend checking out Dr. Karen Becker a veterinarian with a lot of really great things to say about pet nutrition as well. Dr. Becker also took part in the new documentary Pet FOOleD which you can find on Netflix.




Butternut Squash Garden Veg Puree

Squash from our garden

Squash from our garden

I know I recently talked about the benefits of pumpkin, and the benefits of butternut squash are not far off, but I love it so much that I had to write about it. This year we attempted (successfully I might add) to grow our own butternut squash. This magical winter squash is one of the healthiest vegetables you can feed to your dog. It is higher in Vitamin-C than any other winter squash. It is also a packed full of fiber, vitamin A and potassium. Vitamin-c helps boost your dog’s immune system while vitamin-A helps with vision health.

For the Butternut Squash Garden Veg Puree I started off by peeling, seeding and cutting up the squash. 20130930_160935[1]

I then pureed the squash in a few different batches because it quickly filled my food processor. I added olive oil to the puree to help my processor out. 20130930_161459[1]

I then separately pureed some Swiss chard, kale and a pear from my garden. I also added some apple cider vinegar and some more olive oil.

20130930_162242[1]I then mixed all the purees together. You can do this all in one batch if you use smaller quantities or if you have a giant blender…which I don’t.


And, Voila! You have a big mixing bowl full of veggy puree. I bagged it up into six labeled and dated freezer zip locks and one small tupperware. The tupperware portion will be served up for the pups meals for the next week or so and the freezer bags will keep me stocked for a while. Of course, I still have plenty of produce  growing in my garden so I’ll probably make a couple more fresh purees before the snow really starts to fall.


Pumpkin & Peanut Butter Biscuits

20130915_160123Ok, so I was hesitant to write this post because these treats contain wheat flour. However, while I myself eat fairly healthy the majority of the time, I feel everyone should splurge in junk food occasionally. So that is what I am doing for my dogs. Today we baked cookies!

What better way to bring in fall than baking in the kitchen. These treats made my whole house smell simply delicious.

I adapted this recipe from one I found on Pinetrest and can not unfortunately find the link again. I wanted to minimize the whole wheat flour so I cut it back and added some flaxseed.



  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup ground flaxseed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Mix together all ingredients. Add water as needed to make the dough workable, however it should be dry and stiff.

3. Roll the dough flat into 1/2 an inch thickness.


4.Use cookie cutters to cut out biscuits.


5. Place on a cookie sheet and bake until hard, about 20 minutes.


I had a few dogs boarding at my B&B and as you can see, they were all anxiously waiting for the biscuits to be done….that and the occasional pieces of dough. They all LOVED them!




pumpkinI know August just began but I am seriously looking forward to cooler temperatures and the smells and tastes of fall. Utah temps have been way too hot for far too long! This year I planted my first ever pumpkin plant in our garden in hopes of having lots of excess to puree for the dogs. You see, my pups LOVE pumpkin. In fact, I don’t think I’ve met a dog yet who doesn’t enjoy a spoonful or two mixed in with their usual grub both RAW and kibble alike.

Besides being a favorite addition to many bowls, pumpkin helps with

  1. digestive health – Just a tablespoon or two of pureed pumpkin, without any sugar added of course, is a great source of fiber and will help with both constipation and  diarrhea. Their high water content will also help hydrate their intestines further assisting with constipation.  I give a little to my dogs when they have an upset stomach and it usually helps them feel much better.
  2. urinary tract health  – It is believed that the oils in pumpkin flesh and seeds aid in urinary tract health.
  3. weight loss – If you have been struggling with your dog’s weight and just can’t seem to get him or her to shed a couple pounds, try replacing a portion of their food with pureed pumpkin. The fiber in the pumpkin will help them feel full.

Pumpkins are also a good source of Vitamin A, beta-carotene, potassium and iron and the seeds are high in essential fatty acids which is great for your dogs skin and coat.

By the way, it is great for cats as well! That is if you can get them to eat it.

Nothing makes you loose your appetite quite like clipping the nails off of chicken feet

Owpid-20130427_113052.jpgh, the things l do for my dogs. A few days ago l picked up a couple pounds of Chicken feet or as the package proclaimed, chicken paws, for the pups. l have read that they are a wonderful source of glucosamine so l thought I’d try them out. Upon further reading, of course after l had already bought them, I discovered that you need to trim off the claws or nails before feeding them to your dogs.

Until a few years back, l couldn’t even bring myself to touch raw meat much less Chicken feet. Needless to say the “paws” sat in my fridge for several days. I would pull them out a couple of times each day with the resolve to finally get the trimming done. Then I would “chicken out” and put it off for later. wpid-20130427_112348.jpgFinally this morning l did it! l had to call my best friend in the process so we could chat about boys and keep my mind off the task at hand. When the job was done I put a few in the dog’s bowls and the rest into freezer bags. Now here it is a little past noon and l still have not been able to eat anything today. Not only did the chicken feet contribute to my lack of appetite but l decided to give the dogs some full sardines that l purchased from Primal as well. These are not the canned kind that I often feed to the dogs and Nakia at least quite enjoys. They are full on frozen fish.

Watching the dogs crunch into a whole fish did me in. Surprisingly enough though, I may have found something Nakia doesn’t like. She crunched into the fish bodies opening the carcasses, then left them for Rose to roll in. So, that is how my morning went, chicken paws, fish guts and bath time, all on an empty stomach.



Family Dinner

wpid-20130418_2112210.jpgFor Christmas, my grandmother gave me a cookbook with a collection of her recipes. My grandma has always been a fabulous cook. Tonight I decided to try a new recipe from the book, Salmon Bake with Pecan Crunch. However, I did not have a few of the ingredients so I improvised. My version was made with a Walnut Crunch. I also decided tonight they animals would share in my bounty.

For Sensi, just raw sockeye salmon. He ate most of it which I am very happy about as he won’t touch the elk, deer, or pork I have tried to give him in the past.

The girls’ dishes looked so good I could have eaten them.

Human, dog and cat dinners

Human, dog and cat dinners

They had:

  • Raw sockeye salmon
  • Boiled asparagus drizzled with salmon oil
  • Finely chopped walnuts
  • Raw honey
  • and some raw pork chops left over from this morning, with bone for Nakia.

They loved, loved, loved their dinners tonight! I didn’t think Rose would eat her veggies but low and behold, they were one of the first to go.

Lucky dogs. What are some of the meals you guys prepare for your four legged kiddies? Share in the comment section below.