Tuesday, October 6, 2009

"We interrupt this marriage to bring you hunting season"

First here is a photo of the Missy enjoying one of her chew toys. The new meds are really making her feel more herself. Now normally chew toys are not allowed on the couch but right now what Moo wants, Moo gets.

Hunting season has begun here in Maine which means free meat scraps. My husband owns a game butcher business and grinds all the "not for human consumption" leftovers for me to use for the dogs. It is the perfect arrangement. True organic meat normally wasted being used instead in a feeding program.
I have a sign on my wall which reads "We interrupt this marriage to bring you hunting season". Because of the hours he spends at the shop, and the occasional time he gets to hunt himself, it is very accurate. I hardly see him this time of year. When he does come home he smells like meat shop and the dogs love it. Personally I don't say a proper hello until after he hits the shower. Hey, we all have our limits.

Now I'm not an expert at feeding raw but so far it has worked for my crew. I use the model described in the book Raw Dog Food by Carina Beth MacDonald which is a fabulous book that takes all the stress out of raw feeding. I add the above supplements along with some veggies and feed the occasional real bones as well. (morning meals also have pro-biotics and salmon oil added) Deer and Moose have bones that are really to large for safe eating (for my dogs) aside from the small deer ribs. This is why I add the calcium. If you feed enough actual bone you don't need to do this. I normally feed one raw meal and one kibble meal each day. Because of the amount of meat I am getting however this year I think I will try feeding full raw. There certainly is no danger of running out.

Mixing it can be time consuming and I will need to figure out the schedule for that. I do prefreeze all the meat first to kill parasites as an added safety precaution. So there is a need for a thaw and mix schedule so I can overlap and not run out of ready to go food. I also need to find a better storage container. I need one with an airtight lid. Tonight was their first raw moose meal.

I'm sure my "photo op" was annoying to the waiting hungry masses. (Why is she torturing us?? Make it stop!!)

Today I managed to take Jenny for a real walk and trim her nails. I hate to admit it but trimming her nails makes me nervous because she gets nervous. I don't have this trouble with Jack. Of course I trained him from a puppy to so perhaps that is the difference. He is relaxed about it so I am relaxed about it. Missy doesn't like it but I can do hers with her on her back on the couch or in the tub with few problems. I keep saying I want to teach myself how to dremel nails and then train Jenny to it but that hasn't happened yet. Best laid plans and all I guess. I just read about this method in the latest Susan Conant book, All Shots and thought I might try this: http://www.shirleychong.com/keepers/nailfile.html It sounds interesting. I'll let you know if it works if I do attempt it. (I'll add it to my "to do" list.) Today I went with the yummy food as a distraction while my son helped by keeping her from jumping off the table. I did fine and fortunately she does have nice see through nails which helps to. No one was injured in the process which is always a win.
Things have been abit off here with Missy's issues so individual time with the others has been slim. Since she has been feeling better and I had someone home to keep an eye on her I took Jenny out. She is my "high maintenance" dog when it comes to exercise and activity level. I have cultivated Jack's couch potato activity level and he is as lazy as I am in that regard. (Thank the stars!!) He loves his outings to but he doesn't drive me nuts if he doesn't get them like Jenny does.

We hit the boardwalk, which is very scenic, and stopped by our favorite dog store The Loyal Biscuit. While there Jenny made a new friend, a super sweet and debonair mini aussie named Bronco. She got excited and made what we dubbed "Blue's clues" noises. It was very cute. Hopefully I can get a few more walks in with both her and Jack this weekend.

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