Treats trump toys

While visiting my sister a few years ago, Grace landed in the midst of many toys, but choose the treat instead. There’s nothing wrong with treats — but making them nutritious is a smart choice.

Grace eats anything. And I mean anything. I get grossed out thinking about some of the things I’ve seen her devour and enjoy. Her early days on the streets of Puerto Rico produced a scavenger mentality and I’m not sure if she has any taste buds, just an insatiable desire to eat whatever is within sensory range of her nose.

So it might seem silly that I care about what she eats. While I have no idea of whether she enjoys a particular taste over another (though she does seem to be partial to carrots over other vegetables but when it comes to meat or carcass remnants found in the woods, everything seems to be quite tasty to her), I do like to feed her healthy food. Isn’t it true that we are what we eat?

It seems to me that the treats sold on the market are especially lacking in nutrition. I see a lot of dog owners offer ample treats during the day (I’m no different) and a constant stream of unhealthy ingredients adds up.

I recently discovered a very cool company called The Organic Hound, based right in my neck of the woods in southwest New Hampshire. Some companies make treats that claim to be healthy or natural. The Organic Hound is different.

Every ingredient they use is 100% organic certified and is sourced from as many local, organically certified farms and producers as possible. Yesterday, New Hampshire Department of Agriculture conducted a site visit and audit as the next step towards becoming certified for their baking processes. They won’t know the outcome for a few weeks, but they are well on their way to certification, but more importantly is a clear sign of how important they view a healthy snack. This is serious business.

It might seem like a little snack isn’t that big of a deal. But have you ever seen how a kid behaves after having two sugar donuts for breakfast? Or experienced how you felt after eating too much junk food? Behavior is affected by our nutrition and we can’t ignore the connection.

Mind you, I love my Almond Joy flavored ice cream, chock full of heavy cream, sugar, chocolate bits, rich coconut and nuts. It’s rich in flavor, calories, and unhealthy ingredients. And I will never give it up. But I’m not going to be at my best if I eat it every day, multiple times a day.

And the same is true with all of us – humans and canines. I believe this topic is more than just about the food and snacks we eat. It’s about choices we make – conscious choices every day about how we can be our best. Grace will eat anything, but should she?
So I respect the efforts and hard work by any company that goes above and beyond to provide a healthy product. I have no financial connection with The Organic Hound, just an interest to promote options for healthy lifestyle choices.

It’s something we can all benefit from. Check it out!

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8 comments

  1. didiwright says:

    I have such strong views on this that I could write pages in response to your post. Luckily, you’ve pretty much expressed how I think and feel, so I won’t have to 😛
    Yes, we are all, humans and animals, what we eat. In a world where obesity and diet-related illnesses have reached an all times high, it’s time everybody realised that. As a family, we don’t eat processed food. Everything, including bread, is home-made, preferably using our own produce. Just like any other young family, we don’t have much spare time, but we prioritise on cooking our food and eating healthily. I believe the benefits of raising our child in a healthy environment and helping her develop healthy eating habits are huge and worth my time.
    You’re doing the right thing making sure Grace eats a healthy diet, too. We do the same with George…My husband sometimes says (jokingly) that our dog eats better than some people…You know what, he’s probably right!
    I like the sound of that company and their products, and will check out their website. They’re probably inaccessible to us because of location, but it’s good to see that there’s a trend of rediscovering the healthy way 🙂

  2. Robin – Thank you for this wonderful post! We appreciate the support from like-minded dog lovers in our community!
    @didiwright – We also follow the BARF diet for our little pack of Newfies and our lone German Shepherd!

  3. This is an Excellent post! I love your take on the whole treats add up statement. I wrote a post a long time ago about ‘you are what you eat.’ I will love to link this post to it. (not that anyone ever reads my old post, heheh but it is one I am proud of because of how hard I worked to write it.)

    Dogs can eat putrid meat because their tastebuds are wired in a completely different manner to humans. I have no idea what food tastes like to a dog but I’m sure it tastes different from how we taste stuff. In fact seeing how estatic dogs get over smells… really makes me wish just once to be able to smell the world the way they do.

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