Kimahri with Mama Wolf Vee
Take Control of Your Dog’s Health in 7 Steps
Our dogs don’t come with a manual, and we’re often left to figure things out on our own. Every dog parent we’ve met over the years wants the best health for their dogs, but most don’t know where to begin and it can feel overwhelming. We’ve been dog parents since 2009 and I like passing on some gold nuggets to you to get you started.
Let’s begin with 7 keys to take control of your dog’s health.
I don’t want you to feel overwhelmed. Instead I recommend to begin implementing each step one week apart, and you’ll feel amazing once you’ve reached these goals. The extra bonus : this is going to impact your own life in such a positive way, too.
Let’s dive in.
1. SWAP TO PURIFIED WATER.
City tap water is filled with dangerous toxins, heavy metals, chemicals, and literally poisons. These unwanted ingredients are often the cause of so many short and long term health ailments such as nervous system damage, organ damage, organ failure, reproductive issues – all the way to cancer. Well water can contain contaminants too!
So what can we do? Buy bottled water? Not only is bottled water expensive, it’s also not properly purified or safe. On top of that, these mass produced cheap plastic bottles leach chemicals into the water.
Let’s talk about the affordable solution: The Water Purifier.
Not all water filters are created equal, and many water purification systems can be very expensive. If you’re using something like Brita or similar, the water remains filled with contaminants and toxins that are unsafe to drink for all of us. After weeks of research, I finally found an affordable and high quality brand water filter for our entire family. I was so stoked to find a brand that I’m confident to recommend to you. We filmed a dedicated video on this subject you can watch below.
AFFORDABLE WATER PURIFICATION
I reached out to Epic Water Filters and the company was kind enough to extend a discount code for you to use on your entire order.
If you’re on city tap water, the Epic Pure Pitcher is right for you. If you’re on a well, the Epic Nano Pitcher is best for you. Be sure to use the code HUSKYSQUAD during checkout to take advantage of the discount.
2. HEALTHY SNACKS.
It’s so easy to be fooled by dog treats in pet stores. Flashy words like “healthy, natural, dental care…” you name it – makes these treats seem safe for dogs. Unfortunately, in the ingredients lurk endless chemicals, color, many unsafe products, and fillers. The majority of dog treats are loaded with foods that are not species appropriate for dogs, like gluten, carbs, corn, legumes, soy … the list is endless. Rawhide is extremely unhealthy for dogs too!
AN EASY SOLUTION: SIMPLE REAL FOOD. You may already have some of these at home.
Here’s a list to get you started:
- Any kind of raw, fresh or frozen (ideally organic) berries. These make great mini training treats too, especially blueberries. Berries are packed with antioxidants and it’s wonderful for all of us.
- Organic, pasture raised hard cheeses in very small amounts and on special occasions. Little bites are amazing for training sessions. Some dogs can be allergic to cow dairy, and goat cheese can be a fantastic alternative.
- Single ingredient, freeze dried raw meat based snacks. You can find these in local, smaller mom-and-pop, healthy pet food stores – or you can get them online too. I’ve added some here to our Amazon list. You can get treats like minnows, beef liver nibs, chicken heart nibs, cod skins, etc. The ingredient list will have only ONE ingredient.
- Celery sticks. Some dogs turn their noses up, but many of them LOVE IT. It’s low calorie, healthy, hydrating, and wonderful for the digestive tract.
Just keep in mind: treats are just that “treats” and should account for the total food amount for the day to avoid overeating. Too many treats on top of the daily food intake can lead to obesity and host of other health issues.
3. NON-TOXIC BOWLS.
For food, ditch the plastic, it leaches chemicals into your beloved pup’s food (and water). Stainless steel can collect rust often invisible to the bare eye until there’s a lot of it. Yikes.
We’ve been using these fantastic, non-slip ceramic bowls for years, and we highly recommend them. Just make sure you wash them after EACH meal to avoid bacteria growth. If they chip for whatever reason – they must be discarded.
For water, these 100% clear glass bowls are my favorite. I like a nice large size bowl that’s deep and heavy, sitting on a non-slip silicone mat. I run the bowl through the wash frequently to keep it clean. Watch our video on this subject here.
4. DITCH THE TOXIC HOUSEHOLD SUPPLIES.
This will impact you and your entire household positively. Chemicals and toxins lurk in typical floor cleaners, dish detergent, laundry detergent, (dog) shampoos, soap bars, deodorant, moisturizers, dryer sheets, lotions, you name it! These toxic substances are extremely damaging to all of us, and dogs included. I will include a link here to a video we created dedicated to this subject and you’ll be so glad to see how easy it is to make the change. I also highly recommend the eye opening documentary on this topic: Chemerical.
There are so many healthier, non-toxic options available today, and they are more affordable than ever. Toxicity causes expensive, and extremely damaging ailments which can be easily prevented. While I found great options in many supermarkets, Grove became my favorite home delivery choice for toxic-free household supplies. I’ve been a member with them since late 2019, and I’ve not looked back since.
5. DAILY FITNESS.
This is a no brainer, right? Unfortunately, many dog parents share how they barely exercise their pups twice per week. I don’t feel this is on purpose. We all love our dogs and want the best for them. Sometimes stress, a busy schedule, and self-neglect can cause this, but it doesn’t have to be this way!
Here are a couple of tips to get you unstuck, and enjoy DAILY fitness with your pup:
- Choose comfy shoes according to the season and climate. Don’t hold back from getting yourself a pair of good rain boots, hiking shoes, and comfy street sneakers. Winter calls for warmth, and I don’t know about you – but I like to keep my toe beans warm. I love my insulated winter boots and thick, warm, woolen socks.
- Wear the right seasonal clothing. People are often shocked how we take the Squad for walks – even during frigid temperatures. Well, we have great winter coats, boots, socks, hats, gloves and scarves – and they absolutely work!
- Build a routine you can easily follow. This will look different for everyone! For example, as soon as you get home from work, change clothes, throw on these comfy shoes and head out right away. Make it a habit not to do anything else before completing this task. This will help you decompress, enjoy a great evening, and better sleep. Another option can be: wake up an hour earlier and begin your day with a beautiful sunrise walk for the day. This will have a great impact on your entire day. Choose what works for you. After sticking to it for three days, you’ll have a fantastic new habit developed.
- Take your favorite drink with you on your walk. Our summers call for a refreshing iced homemade berry drink, and winter calls for cozy hot chocolate in our favorite insulated to-go mugs.
- Grab a friend to join you in what we call #GetTheHuskyOut – because we all need to get our fitness needs met. Holding each other accountable will lock you in!
Daily fitness for your pup has so many benefits, and would need an entire blog on its own to scratch the surface. You’ll prevent health issues, keep a trim weight, improve mood, improve relaxation, promote an overall healthy physique, better digestion, and yes – a longer life – for both of you!
6. REAL FOOD
Let’s see. Do you think it’s healthy to eat cheap, dry cereal with over 30 ingredients for your entire life? I highly doubt it! Somehow, kibble companies, big-box pet food stores, and mainstream veterinarians managed to convince the masses that dogs (and cats) can live a healthy life to eat this way. Not only is this extremely unfair to any living being, it’s also extremely unhealthy.
How were we convinced?
They managed to create a narrative that there’s no way dog parents can have the knowledge to put together simple, complete and healthy meals for their dogs, made of real food. They managed to convince modern society to put the health and lives of our beloved dogs in the hands of greedy corporations who are clueless about nutrition and motivated by their huge profit margins.
The convenient and obvious detail which is left out: dogs have successfully been our companions for thousands of years, and have lived and thrived on real food throughout our joined history. Meanwhile, kibble has been around for less than a century. Go figure…
The kibble industry and its entire octopus of connections convinced people to be afraid. Marketing works. This is why companies spend a fortune on marketing to make things flashy, appealing, and driven by emotion. Kibble makes a few people a lot of money, supports the pharmaceutical industry who massages modern veterinary education, and keeps a tight grip on what their vets are allowed to prescribe (more kibble!). This results in a cycle which keeps many people trapped and insecure in their own abilities to be the dog parent they can easily be. How dare we question something that lacks so much reason and logic?!
Meanwhile, 50% of the domesticated dog population is diagnosed with cancer by 6-7 years young. Dogs suffer from allergies, chronic digestion issues, dental disease, enlarged heart problems DCM (often fatal), skin problems, obesity, and spend many years going from one drug to another without resolution.
Well, times are changing. The 21st century I feel is a time of awakening. Although we were raised to follow the crowd, many of us put the fear aside because deep down we know we deserve better, and so do our dogs. Dog parents around the world are taking theirs and the health of their beloved dogs into their own hands. They take the time to learn the foundation of a species correct diet for their dogs, ditch the kibble, and switch to holistic care to promote a long, and amazing quality of life.
Ditching kibble is by far the best thing you can do for your dog!
YOUR DOG COULD BE EATING LIKE THIS
...and it's easier than you think!
7. REAL, CLEAN SUPPLEMENTS
Let’s get the most important thing out of the way. Supplements are exactly that: Supplements. The solid nutritional foundation is a species correct, fresh food diet – and nothing can replace this foundation. Supplements are there to provide natural healing, and additional benefits through high quality, clean, and natural sources.
The majority of supplements are made from cheap, low quality ingredients, and they do way more harm than good. They might as well be avoided all together. Any supplements we give are highly researched for its sourcing and quality or provided directly through our holistic veterinarian who often even creates some of them himself. You can read further details in our blog “The Best Supplements For Dogs.”
MY CLOSING THOUGHTS
Taking control of your dog’s health is an amazing and rewarding experience. Learning and researching is a lifelong journey, but with every step we take, we set ourselves up for a beautiful healthy flow and long life.
With each step you take, you’ll feel more empowered, more connected to your beloved dog, and more in tune with both of your natural needs. You’ll both be rewarded with better health, a more relaxed mind, and deeper shared fulfillment.
Did you find these 7 keys helpful? Which step are you going to start out with? I’d love to read your thoughts in the comments section below.
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