Senior Dogs 101: Supplementing For Longevity!

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I know I’ve been mentioning Ru’s age a lot more than usual, but I guess that’s because I want to stay aware of what this next phase of life will bring. I’m lucky that as of right now, I have an incredibly vibrant and healthy old man. Rufus shows no outward signs of achy joints, cloudy eyes, or hearing loss. His coat is still beautiful and shiny and he’s fairly active. Besides his ongoing issues with his gums (which are all genetic and mostly pain-free for him), he’s a healthy guy . A healthy, salt-and-pepper senior dude.

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He just really loves his naps. Like..a lot.

It’s important to stay proactive about your older dog’s health, even when everything seems to be going pretty freaking well. That’s how we keep things on the up-and-up, right?

I experiment a lot with what I give Rufus and always keep a close eye on any changes I see. There have been a few duds in the supplementation department, but here are a few that I continue to use and love:

Turmeric

I started giving Rufus turmeric after his dental scare last year to help fight some of the inflammation. It’s helped a little in that department, but like I said, it’s an uphill battle. HOWEVER! Supplementing with turmeric has proven to help in a lot of other ways. Turmeric can aid in relieving arthritic pain as well as any gastrointestinal issues. Not to mention this little plant can be cancer-fighting as well! We juice semi-regularly in this household, so sometimes I have turmeric root on hand but mostly supplement both of our diets with turmeric powder I buy in bulk online. Like I said before, Rufus doesn’t seem to be having joint issues yet but he is a tad slower getting up after a long snooze, so I figure it can’t hurt.

Raw Feeding

Ru’s diet isn’t 100% raw, but we’re leaning more and more towards that way of living as he gets older. His food digests so well, his poops are tiny, and he absolutely loves it! Yep. This vegan feeds her dog a 50% raw food diet in the form of freeze dried mixes and frozen patties thanks to Honest Kitchen and Stella and Chewy’s. The Honest Kitchen isn’t so bad because it’s dry fish and a ton of veggies, but the patties kind of make me wanna barf. The things we do for our pets…

Coconut oil

Another supplement the whole family shares. Coconut oil is great for dogs (and humans) and helps keep their coats shiny, their guts happy, and their brains functioning healthily. Rufus goes crazy for coconut oil as well – he loves his fats! It’s also great on toast with some coconut sugar and cinnamon for us humans. Just FYI.

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Blurry but on the go!

Those are just a few of the supplements I give to Rufus to keep him happy and healthy. All of them are fairly affordable, especially since I only supplement with the raw food as of right now. I’m really happy with the results I’ve seen in the long term, so I thought it was worth sharing with all of you out there fighting the good fight. We can’t stop our pups from getting older, but we can certainly keep their quality of life from diminishing for as long as possible.

What supplements do you use for your dogs? Any tips on how to make a 100% raw diet more affordable? And maybe even less disgusting…ahem.

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Collar Addicts Anonymous | Very Vintage Collars

While I was slowly becoming the crazy dog lady that I am today, I didn’t know I could find so much joy in a beautifully well-made collar. There’s just something about finding the perfect collar for your dog that makes me waaaaay too happy. But oh well, right? I just roll with my weirdness.

I’ve tried a few Etsy stores now for dog supplies and I’ve been really happy with all of them. I love Etsy artists and I really love supporting small businesses. I mean, I kind of have one of those myself so it’s important to me to support my fellow entrepreneurs.

 

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Very Vintage collars are a-dor-a-ble! They are organic and well-made. In fact, they even went out of their way to put a few custom details into the ones I ordered.

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You may be wondering why in the world I ordered a “girl” collar? Well, I kind of thought my foster pup was going to last more than one day haha…

Luckily Abby was around to model this cute watermelon pattern. Also, I am not above making Rufus wear my favorite summer melon design either. He’s comfortable enough with his masculinity anyway. Such a dude.

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Doesn’t he look dapper (and a tad drool-y) in the chevron pattern? The pop of red was totally my idea.

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Behind the scenes of a dog photoshoot. They don’t work for free, folks!

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But they sure look cute begging, don’t they?

Very Vintage has a ton of other options. I almost chose the pineapple one because…pineapple! I also really love the farmer’s market pattern and well, what PDX dweller wouldn’t love something with a bird on it??

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Also, popsicles! Ok I’ll stop now.

If you’re interested in trying out a new shop for your pup’s fashion needs, I couldn’t recommend Very Vintage enough. The customer service was stellar and the shop owner was so kind and accommodating. I’ll definitely be ordering more in the future! Just try and stop me.

 

 

Tasty Tuesday | 1 Ingredient Dog Treats by Halo

Happy Tuesday! I hope all of you out there (human and canine alike) are having a great start to the week. We are sweating our faces off in the Northwest as it is all of a sudden in the high 80s!! Why?? I could go for a whole lot more of of the 70-degree range before we dive into summer, thanks.

I just thought I’d pop in and share a quick treat review with you – Halo Liv-a-Littles! For anyone that tries to keep their pup’s diet pure and simple, these are a win!

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100% wild salmon. That’s what we like to see!

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And yes these are extra stinky! But of course, this just makes them more appealing to the power of the pup nose…

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Since these are dehydrated, they’re definitely not easy to break apart and use as training treats. However, they can be used for a jackpot treat (bigger, smelly, more rewarding) or just to crumble and put on top of your dog’s meals if he/she is a picky eater.  Who knows? Maybe one day I’ll have one of those and that comment will actually mean something. Hah!

Oh, and if you happen to be a cat person, these are 100% safe for felines as well! Bonus!

Thanks to Chewy for providing Halo’s Liv-a-Littles in exchange for my honest review and opinion. I know Rufus really appreciates the opportunity. 😉

Best Bully Sticks Review | Bully Flakes Exist??

When I first became a foster dog mom, I relied HEAVILY on bully sticks of all shapes and sizes to keep the most rambunctious of foster pups busy. Since most of my fosters fell between puppy and adolescent age, they were mostly busy bodies that were constantly look for something to do….or something to get into. So, I stuffed an endless amount of Kongs, found out about the magic of puzzle toys, and bought long-lasting chews like they were going out of style. They were magic in my eyes.

So when Best Bully Sticks offered to send us some free goodies in exchange for our honest opinion, I jumped at the opportunity!

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They sent us two products: an XL (naturally shed) antler and something that was completely new to me – bully flakes! What will they think of next, right?

So on the antler front, Rufus is a so-so fan. He seems to prefer the ones that come split down the middle so that he can get to the marrow, but he will also chew on the whole thing when he’s feeling feisty. In short, it’s not his favorite thing but the dude won’t turn down a good chew when the mood strikes.

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But what about these bully flakes? Well, he loved them! Why? Because he’s a total carnivore (unfortunately for his hippy mom over here) and anything packed with protein (51% in these unassuming flakes) makes him a happy, happy pup.

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How do I use them? Basically I just sprinkle them on top of his food or mix them in with his pumpkin or peanut butter Kongs before I freeze them. They’re kind of a cool product, especially if any of you out there have dogs that are super picky about eating. However, we all know I don’t have that problem. :ahem:

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Thanks again to Best Bully Sticks for providing us with some great products in exchange for our honest review! 

Our Favorite Products | Zuke’s Z-Bones

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Full disclosure: we are big fans of Zuke’s over here! When I think of how long I’ve been purchasing products from this company, I get warm and fuzzy memories of my early days fostering pups and realizing there were companies out there that really cared about our pets’ health.

I was still in college, living on my own for the first time. It took exactly one month before I really, really started to miss the companionship of my own dogs back at home. And since I wasn’t in a place financially to take on my own four-legged friend, I jumped into fostering head-first.

And the more I learned about dog care-taking, the more I got in touch with people who had a whole lot to teach me about dog behavior, dog nutrition, dog safety, and all of those other wonderful topics I still geek out over on a regular basis. But I digress….for now…

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Enter Zuke’s. They probably stick out to me because they’re a brand that’s been around, so we’ve been able to find them in most big box pet stores for awhile now. Their training treats were my go-to for years!

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Bu these days, we stick to their allergy-friendly dental treats. Rufus absolutely loves all of the flavors, but the clean carrot seems to make him extra drool-y. And  despite this, I still love everything else about them….

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…and yes, those are jowl dribbles all over my carpet. The things we do for love, am I right??

Thank you to Chewy.com for their generous delivery of delicious things in exchange for our honest review.  Rufus is your biggest fan!! ❤ 

Dog Product Review | Blue Buffalo Boo Bars (and thank you)

First of all, thank you all so much for your kind comments on my last post. August was a really rough month and I’m so glad it’s over. Now it’s time to pick myself up and keep on truckin’!

There's no rest when there are squirrels to be chased!

There’s no rest when there are squirrels to be chased!

How about a yummy season-appropriate treat review to kick off the fall months ahead of us? In the northwest, we’ve been lucky enough to have some 70 degree days recently and it’s been so nice! Fall happens to be my favorite time of year. So long, heat wave! (fingers crossed…)

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Chewy sent over these adorably named bite-sized treats from Blue Buffalo. With limited ingredients, these little guys were a crowd pleaser. Pumpkin just happens to be one of Ru’s favorite foods and they smell exactly like you’d imagine! Pumpkin and cinnamon-y goodness. Seriously, they are pretty pleasing to the human nose too.

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If your pup is a fan of pumpkin too, check out these treats by clicking here.

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Thanks to Chewy for always being super awesome to us and allowing us to try out their amazing products. 

Product Review | Wellness TruFood CocoChia Bakes

Coco Chia Bakes for dogs? What will they think of next?

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Coconut and chia seeds both happen to be foods that I eat on a regular basis. Flaked coconut on top of my oatmeal, chia seeds in my smoothies, coconut oil melted on top of my sweet potato – yum! You get the idea. So when I saw that I could give my pup a treat with so much good-for-you goodness in them as well, I jumped at the chance. Ru’s photobomb says it all. Yes please to all the treats!

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These little bites smell more like their earthier ingredients than delicious coconut (greens galore!) which probably means there’s a lot of the good stuff in there. I’m cool with that. Oh, and Rufus doesn’t seem to mind eating his greens in treat form either.

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They’re bite-sized, which makes them great for smaller dogs or a training treat. Because they’re not super stinky, they may not be ideal for picky eaters.  I have yet to live with the ever-elusive “picky” dog, so that really doesn’t pertain to this scenario.

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“Give me all the food,lady!”

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Crazy eyes? Check.

IMG_7084Overall, I’d say these are ideal for dogs that will eat just about anything as well as those of you that prefer to feed your pups somewhat healthier treats, saving the chewy/meaty stuff for special occasions. Give ’em a try!

*Thanks to Chewy for gifting us these treats in exchange for our honest review.