Susanella Noble: Flutist & Composer
For My Tibetan Terrier Friends
I hope that our story will prove that your dogs won't keel over dead from eating real food, that it's cheaper, they'll be healthier and live longer.
When we moved to Hawaii with Buckaroo and Gaucho in 2002 they had to stay at a local kennel for 30 days to fulfill the quarantine requirements which have since been relaxed. I had prepared frozen meals for the boys in labeled bags that could be set out overnight to thaw. Every day we visited and brought snacks and fresh foods and spent hours just holding them or playing, loving, learning new tricks. They had an air-conditioned room of their very own where the staff liked to hang out and cool off so Bucky and Gaucho were the best friends of the great employees of Bar-King Kennels on the Big Island.
Shortly after we arrived, I happened to visit the home of a well-respected animal lover and dog-trainer who was a veterinary assistant at the local clinic for many years. I met her beautiful brood of Dalmatians, mutts, felines, and birdies and, while walking through her yard I saw the smelly stools and remarked to her, "I see you're still poisoning your pets." She took great offense and said that Science Diet was 100% nutritionally complete and she knew what she was doing. We didn't have an occasion to speak again for a year until I went to visit again. All the pups joyfully greeted me and I could see that they were bursting with new vigor and vitality. I spotted some plump, healthy dog turds in her yard, turned to her and said, "I see you've stopped poisoning your pets." Well, she went off on me, not remembering that I was the catalyst for her transformation, and said how Science Diet had LIED to her! She had called and demanded to know what every single ingredient was on the label and then she went after Iams and then after Eukanuba and informed me that ALL the pet food manufacturers were lying to us and all those pet foods were made from spoiled meat byproducts and were full of toxins and it was unbelievable what they are doing to our pets and then she stopped, looked me in the eyes and said, "Whoops, it was you, wasn't it?" She has since surpassed me in homefeeding cats and has become an authority on natural nutrition for animals - she's now an inspiration to me.
I don't need to blow the whistle on commercial pet food -- it was done long ago and the facts are in. Ann Martin's book, Foods Pets Die For, was "one of the most suppressed news stories of the decade" after it came out in 1997. From The New York Times to the Internet, the truth about the toxicity of commercial pet food is out for every pet owner to read. However, if you're like me, you've been brainwashed your whole life, suckered into the propaganda of the pet food manufacturers and their false claims about 100% nutritionally complete (should read 100% artificial) and how you shouldn't give your pets table scraps. Whoa, that's exactly what dogs HAVE been eating for more years than humans have even been eating from tables! Why are our vets telling us to feed the Hill's Prescription and Science Diet bags that they sell in their clinics? Because Hills just built University of California Davis a brand new vet school and Hill's very own in-house-trained staff are teaching nutrition to our future vets = whoops! There are new animal cancer research centers being built by the pet food companies who are manufacturing the very "toxins" that are causing these cancers. It sounds like a crime to me!
Ever since early man brought the predecessors of our modern dogs into their caves some 30,000+ years ago, our ancestors have been sharing their meals with their 'best friends'. They were not experts on nutrition, they simply used their common sense when feeding their pets. The idea of prepared, packaged food was unheard of until 50 years ago, just about the same time that television advertising was born. Think how much humans have evolved in 30,000 years and then imagine how dogs have changed, too. All those centuries that dogs ate REAL food they lived longer, were healthier and had none of the problems that are afflicting our dogs today, conditions that we create because of what we feed them.
As many of you know, my wake-up call was the near-death experience of Champion Chuba's Buckaroo when someone in our neighborhood poisoned him. My vet gave up and sent us to Colorado State University Vet School, they gave up and sent us back to my vet -- they said he was going to die! At the eleventh-hour my darling friend, Marty, rushed over with her copy of Dr. Martin Goldstein's book, The Nature Of Animal Healing. She had marked the chapter on liver disease and I faxed it to my vet and told her to follow the instructions word for word and, miracle of miracles, Bucky survived! It immediately became apparent that he was so delicate that his system couldn't tolerate the evil Purina ProPlan which he NEVER wanted to eat in the first place. I turned to Chapter #1 in Goldstein's book, "It All Begins With Food" and have never gone back - I do occasionally look over my shoulder and shudder. Bucky thanks me every day for his food that gives him a healthy body and also a healthy mind. Because I am Alpha, (no, Bucky, you're NOT), I share my food with him and he accepts it as his lesser status in my pack, something he can understand because food is the dog's strongest instinct. Do your dogs see you eating their food?
Bucky waves to all his old friends back on the mainland
If you haven't read Amelia Kinkade's book, Straight From The Horse's Mouth, put it at the top of your wish list because this great animal psychic can show you how to actually hear what your dogs are telling you! She writes, "cats and dogs tell me the biggest culprit in destroying their health and happiness is commercial pet food." Amelia is savvy enough to suggest, "There's an easy alternative to commercial pet food. Feed your animals what you eat. What you spend on food now, you'll save on vet bills later."
You can say that you're buying the best, most expensive, balanced, top-of-the-line, veterinarian-recommended, peak performance, high-octane, they-couldn't-be-lying-to-us dog food BUT, if it comes out of a bag, as Ann Martin says, it's "garbage". Don't ignore this and wait for your TT's suffer from skin ailments, cancers, kidney problems, diabetes and digestive-tract disorders.
Change is a process and we all have to do it in our own way so just tell yourself you're willing to think about it. A vet who promotes commercial pet food wrote me, "I'm not going to change my mind so I won't try."
Gaucho has never had commercial pet food and he came to us at 3 weeks. He has the cleanest teeth, sweetest breath and is a picture of health.
For centuries, every Tibetan family kept their Su-Khyi dogs as tokens of good luck. They still have them to this day. Our TT cousins who currently reside in their homeland are not eating commercial food from bags. I promise that they are getting food from their owner's plates. It would be interesting to do a study on the longevity of homefed TT's verses commercially fed ones.
Photo of a Su-Khyi in India taken by my friend, Nancy Simon
Next you're going to think that you couldn't possibly feed that many dogs REAL food or you'd go broke! Or you certainly don't have the time! Or my veterinarian couldn't be wrong about this! We need to wake up and take charge of our animals.
My grandmother, Susan, raised and showed her St. Bernard's during the early days of the Colorado Kennel Club and I guarantee that they didn't have packaged dog food back then. Grandmother kept a pot of oatmeal on the stove into which she would put horse meat and fresh vegetables. Without apparent worry, she fed upwards of 500 pounds of prize-winning St. Bernard's daily. I bet you don't have a quarter-ton of Tibetan Terrier mouths to feed!
To my endless delight, 100% of the population of TTCA Tibetan Terriers in the state of Hawaii are homefed! I visited Dennis and Ron on Oahu recently where they prove that you can homefeed a big, beautiful, bouquet of TT's. They are so clean, healthy, happy and odor-free. (When I die, I want to come back as one of Dennis and Ron's pups.)
My visit with Mana Pua pups
You CAN homefeed. Let me help you get started for the sake your beloved dogchildren.
Six Steps To Homefeeding Dogs
#1: Simply throw away that bag of dog food now. Don't do anyone a favor by passing it along. Instead, pass along to your brethren breeders and doggie friends your desire to do the right thing and homefeed your dogchildren. Your dogs will probably go through a period of detox but don't mix the toxic with the real food -- this will further upset a system that is used to dealing with toxins and prolong the detox time.
#2 Start immediately with the most digestible ingredients: cooked oatmeal, cooked meat and raw, puréed vegetables.
#3 Read what the objective experts say and study to see which diet is best for every dog. Do not trust the nutritional advice of a veterinarian who sells dog food in their clinic.
#4 Observe your pet for changes in health and behavior. When you take your dogs to the vet for their checkups, have them run a blood test on everyone to make certain they're getting proper nutrition. Be patient with your vet because they have been brainwashed, too.
#5 Feed a good variety of foods, use your common sense and don't worry.
#6 Keep a journal
The percentages vary but the basic feeding formula for dogs is:
I use a clove of garlic in every batch of dog food to ward off fleas and ticks
Mix together approximately 2 parts meat, 1 part cooked grain and 1 part raw, puréed vegetables and feed
½ cup for every 10 pounds of dog's body weight
A 30 pound adult dog would get 1½ cups of food a day
A growing puppy should get twice the amount or ½ cup of food for every 5 pounds of body weight
(If your dogs is too heavy, feed less; if he is too skinny, feed more)
Our current TT cousins in Tibet are being fed pien cattle, yak, oxen, goat, sheep and horse meats. My dogs thrive on hamburger. The indigenous grains of Tibet are barley and rice which are easy to find. Their native vegetables are tubers similar to sweet potatoes, peas, broad beans plus all the greens they can forage. My dogs do well on broccoli, green beans, carrots, celery, tat soi, kale, lettuce, potatoes, sweet potatoes and yams.
Do NOT feed dogs any of the following:
Chocolate: contains theobromine which is a cardiac stimulant and a diuretic; the darker the chocolate, the higher the toxic effect
Grapes/raisins: have a mold that causes acute renal (kidney) failure
Onions, Shallots, Elephant Garlic, Leeks: all members of the Liliaceae family (except for garlic) contain large amounts of thiosulphate which causes hemolytic anemia.
Alcohol: intoxication causes liver failure
Fresh active yeast and sourdough starter: have the same intoxicating effects as alcohol.
Macadamia nuts: causes locomotory difficulties and temporary paralysis.
Cooked bones: only give dogs raw bones because they become brittle and splinter when cooked
Raw salmon, trout & Steelhead fish: They carry a larvae that is 90% fatal but there is an antidote
Mushrooms: Specifically Amanita varieties cause liver disease and neurological disorders
Raw lamb meat: carries a coccidia parasite that is passed on to humans
Fast Food: The chains of drive-through, fast foods pump their foods full of salt, sugar and MSG which cause diarrhea
Commercial Dry Dog Food: causes skin allergies, cancers, digestive tract problems, kidney stones and weakens the immune system
If your dog has eaten an excessive amount of any of these foods contact your vet immediately.
Or call the following:
ASPCA Poison Control Hotline (1-888-426-4435)
National Animal Poison Control Center ( 1-900-680-0000)
If you worry that your dogs are not getting the proper nutrition I would suggest using a balanced vitamin & mineral supplement with intact amino acid chelates. My whole family, both two and four-legged, take Dynamite supplements.
Organic meats, grains and vegetables are the best. (generic is still human grade and everything is better than commercial pet foods)
Don't hesitate to contact me for moral support or with questions. You really can't go wrong with real food.
© 2008 Susanella Noble