Wednesday, November 19, 2008

MORE DOGGY DIALOGUES! Q's & A's: Canine Elders and Home-cooking

As author of The Healing Art of Pet Parenthood and Mom of a dog who survived canine cancer and lived to be 19, people ask me lots of questions about holistic care, senior care, and grief. I am not a vet. Loving pet parent, avid researcher, and holistic pet care advocate are my credentials. That said, please email your questions and let The Doggy Dialogues begin!

Question: from Mikey
"I'm going to be 10 this week, my vet told my mom-person that I was now (gasp) geriatric....I am an Akita and very spoiled. Does that mean I am old?"
Dear Mikey-
It's funny...50 years ago, 10-years old was not considered old for a dog. My personal belief is that as the rate of such things as canine cancer has skyrocketed, we've grown used to a lower expectation of doggy lifespan. As I've written about throughout The Doggy Dialogues, in my experience, given a truly toxic-free inner and outer environment, dogs can once again be expected to live 18-25 years. Personally, I'd like to wait until your 14th or 15th birthday to officially welcome you into the esteemed ranks of canine elders.

The above photo is Buttons at the age of 18.
I added Yucca extract to her food to help eliminate any swelling in her joints, and ALA to keep her mind sharp. Her senior care is described in more detail in our book. In the meantime, happy birthday, Mikey... enjoy middle-age!

: from Biskit
"Buttons... I read in your mom's book that she fed you ground turkey and millet. How many times a day did you eat? Did you always eat the same food for every meal? Did you eat any veggies? My mommy is interested in cooking for me instead of buying dog food. Thanks in advance for your help!"

Dear Biskit-
First, everything Buttons ate was organic. I would buy the turkey frozen from the health food warehouse and the millet in bulk. Once a week I would cook up the turkey and make a pot of millet (high in protein and amino acids, easier to cook than rice). Every morning and every afternoon, I would mix up and gently warm a bowl 1:3 turkey to millet. To that I would add sea kelp a daily vitamin, and some grated, raw veges. Her appetite was extremely healthy up until the day before she went to The Bridge. I'm guessing she eats liver and steak there (only organic*wink*).

Wishing you vibrant health
and precious moments-
Nadine (and Buttons)

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