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.
  2. EXERCISE
    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.

    20170913_192549

    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.

 

 

 

Advertisements

Why feed RAW?

“We are certainly much more than what we eat, but what we eat can nevertheless help us to be much more than what we are”.

– Adelle Davis

dog bowlBefore I began feeding RAW I struggled with finding a food that Nakia would happily eat. I struggled with her weight and people often thought I was starving her. The vet would give me lots of ideas to help her eat more; put water on her food, mix in wet food, sprinkle in some cheese, etc but none of it seemed to work. She just wouldn’t eat the kibble. She also suffered from allergies and a new health problem what seemed like every week.

Commercial dog foods often contain grain or some other filler which dogs have no use for. So you are often paying for parts of a product that your dog will never use…thus creating more poop for you to clean up in the process. Grains can also cause your dog a lot of health problems.

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERACanines are mainly carnivores. Their jaw structure has evolved to help them process the game they bring down. Their teeth were designed for ripping, slicing and tearing, not chewing. While dogs have come a long way down the evolutionary chain from wolves, their digestive system is still 98% identical to that of the grey wolf. To me it seems only logical that they should then at least in a sense mimic the grey wolf’s diet. And in the wild, I doubt you would find a wolf eating kibble for every meal.

wolves eatingPart of the satisfaction of feeding RAW, at least for me is knowing that I am feeding my dog something she was designed to eat. I also like knowing what is in my dog’s food, quality of ingredients, etc. Also, just as I wouldn’t want to eat the same meal day in and day out my dog is fed something that excites her olfactory system. The different textures, smells, and flavors are exciting for a dog. I no longer have any problem at all getting Nakia to stay at a healthy weight.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERARAW basically means giving them the food just the way it is. Mainly you just need to portion out the meat, no cooking necessary. For small dogs like Rose I will chop up the meat into small pieces so she doesn’t choke. Otherwise she would woof down even the big pieces. I have seen her try to take down a whole chicken drumstick like she is a seagull eating a fish.

I know of RAW people who feed their dogs full chicken and rabbit carcasses but I have not yet reached this step…and I don’t think it would work for Rose. I’m sure Nakia would think it was the greatest day of her life if I did it for her though.

When I introduced RAW feeding into Nakia’s diet all of her allergies went away. She no longer has the gunky eyes, pimply stomach or itchy skin that plagued her life in the past. I also have absolutely no problem getting her to eat her meals.

So what are the health benefits of feeding your dog a RAW diet?

Health Benefits of RAW:

  • Cleaner, healthier teeth
  • Improved coat and skin health
  • builds strong bones and muscles
  • Less poop!
  • Increased energy
  • Reduction in allergies if not complete eradication
  • Longer life
  • Less vet bills
  • less concentrated urine i.e. no burn spots on your grass
  • reduced hot spots
  • reduction in fat, more muscle
  • reduction in body odor
Buster doing his own research

Buster doing his own research

These are only some of the benefits I have noticed in dogs who are fed a RAW diet. The key to feeding your dog a healthy and balanced diet is RESEARCH! Don’t be afraid to get out there and do some of your own!