Our pup has a seriously great life. At least, I think it’s great: morning romps through a nearby field to dig out gopher holes and chasing butterflies . . . afternoon romps on the beach to noshing on sand crabs and play tag with pelican diving in the waves . . . and anytime cuddles with his boy.
I’ve had a huge learning curve, though, in learning how to care for a pup. This is our first dog, and I wasn’t anticipating how much a 4-pound, 9-week old rescue puppy could tug at my heartstrings. He cried the first time he smelled bacon cooking in the kitchen. He cried the first time I made burgers. And he cried the first time he smelled real charcoal barbecue, this tiny thing just learning to walk on a leash, refusing to budge, loving the aroma of beach party dinner. What’s a mom to do? I fed him.
I started to sprinkle a little granola in with his kibble to make it more appetizing, or parmesan cheese, or cooked rice. I’d give him bits of cheese or hot dog as “training rewards” during the day and then get irritated when he wasn’t excited to see his bowl of kibble at 5pm. This was NOT working for either one of us. I didn’t make any – or many – mistakes feeding my kids, but it didn’t take me long to realize that I was following a pathway to terrible doggy eating habits.
I realized my problem was that I didn’t think it fair for pup to smell me cooking all this great food for everyone else, relegating him to dry kibble – albeit Castor & Pollux organic small breed food with quinoa, flax, brown rice, and chicken. Then I realized that fair isn’t an appropriate feeling when it comes to your family dog, though, and sneaking my yummy table scraps to him could cause him harm down the road. So I made a commitment to making his dinner, consulted with the vet, and came up with my recipe for hot puppy kibble salad. Warm lean chicken and organic kibble-laced nutritiousness, served on a plate next to his crate in Kid Two’s room:
Appetizing? Not to me, either. Kid Two says it smells awful; he thinks I’m totally ridiculous, and by the way, mom . . . he’s a dog!
His vet says he’s a very lucky dog. I think I’m a lucky human dog mom.
(I should not have to say this I will anyway – I am only telling a story and not giving advice on what you can or should feed your pet! Talk to your vet if you have questions or want to make changes to its diet! I’m not an expert, by any means, on dog nutrition, and closely follow guidelines set by a licensed doctor of veterinary medicine.)