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Pet Nutrition

  • Posted on March 4, 2015 by Lindsey Mattson

    In our previous post, Feeding Fido: Safe People Food for Dogs, we gave a short list of what is -and is not- safe for your precious pooch to eat. This additional list of unsafe people foods for dogs is another quick reference of what to keep out of Fido's reach. These foods can make your pup very sick and many are toxic. Being diligent of what you have in front of your pup will keep them healthy and happy as well as give you peace of mind when you leave them alone in the house.


    Alcohol // This should be obvious given the effects it has on adults. If consumed, your dog will experience weakness, vomiting and low blood pressure. It can even cause coma and death.

    Apple, Apricot, Cherry and Plum Seeds or Pits //  The problem with these fruits is the inside pits or seeds. They contain cyanide which enables the red blood cells to properly carry oxygen to cells. This causes vomiting, irregular and fast heartbeat, seizures, coma and even death.

    Avocado // These have a toxic compound called Persin that causes vomiting and diarrhea.

    Broccoli // This vegetable is dangerous in large doses but should still be avoided. It  contains isothiocyanate.

    Caffeine // The methylxanthines in caffeinated foods cause potentially fatal diarrhea, vomiting, seizures and irregular heart beats.

    Chives // This is dangerous to both dogs and cats as they may cause anemia.

    Chocolate // This is dangerous for the same reasons as caffeine with the same effects of potentially fatal diarrhea, vomiting, seizures and irregular heart beats.

    Garlic // This is dangerous to both dogs and cats as they may cause anemia

    Grapes and Raisins // This fruit has the potential to cause fatal kidney failure.

    Ham // The fat content of this meat may cause pancreatitis.

    Macadamia Nuts // Although it is unknown why, this nut causes vomiting, weakness, joint pain and inflammation.

    Milk & Dairy Products // Though not fatal, these foods may cause diarrhea and gas if your dog is lactose intolerant.

    Mushrooms // May cause kidney and liver failure, vomiting, diarrhea, hallucination and damage to red blood cells. Although this only pertains to certain varieties, it is best to avoid all to be safe.

    Nutmeg // This spice may cause hallucinations and severe vomiting.

    Onions // This vegetable has the potential to cause fatal oxidation of red blood cells leading to anemia.

    Salt // This includes rock salt and homemade playdough as excessive amounts can cause tremors, seizures and coma.

    Spicy Food // Increasing the spices of any dish your dog may get into has the potential to cause vomiting, stomach ulcers or diarrhea.

    Sugar-Free Gum & Candy (Xylitol) // This chemical causes a potentially fatal drop in blood sugar followed by severe liver damage.

    Tobacco // Nicotine will cause excitement leading to vomiting and tremors that are usually followed by fatal paralysis.

    Yeast Dough // Yeast will create a buildup of gas in a pet’s stomach, leading to severe pain and life threatening torsion or rupture of the stomach.


    Infographic and food information via www.petsbest.com.

    This post was posted in Puppy Parties, Recipes and was tagged with Pet Nutrition, Pet Safety, Puppy Care, Get Party Trained

  • Posted on February 4, 2015 by Meeko ThePooch

    Meeko the Pooch Blog Posts #PuppyShowers #DogBirthdayParties #PuppyPawties

    I like to give all my friends a special treat so I gathered my buddies, Lulu, Buttercup and Hank to bake some fun dog treats to share at the dog park. This was super simple as it began as a box of Puppy Cake mix. I added a few special touches and hot diggity - pawsome treats to share with all my friends!

    Valentine's Day Dog Treat Ideas #PoochPawty

    First, I made the cake batter according to directions. I poured it into a 9x13 pan so it was a really thin layer. After baking for 15 minutes, it was ready! I let it cool then used a small heart-shaped cookie cutter to make the treats.

    To complete them, I mixed the frosting (it's included in the box!) and used a small piping bag to decorate. After drying, these treats were ready to put into baggies and top off with an adorable Valentine's Day sticker I found here on Etsy. They were personalized with my friend's names so they made each treat bag extra special!

    This post was posted in Puppy Parties, Valentines Day, Recipes and was tagged with Do It Yourself Puppy Party Ideas, Pet Nutrition, Holiday Tips and Tricks, Meeko's Point of View, Get Party Trained

  • Posted on January 21, 2015 by Lindsey Mattson

    There may still be snow on the ground here at When Pooch Comes to Shove headquarters but that doesn't mean the gardening hasn't begun. From yummy vegetable gardens to fabulous floral displays, the delicate little seedlings are being started. Nestled in the tiny greenhouses, soaking up sunshine from the warm indoors, each little guy will find a home outside as soon as the threat of frost is gone. BUT - then the threat of d-o-g is upon them.

    The soft ground and smells of spring are hard to resist for any pooch. With a little planning and these tips, you can easily dog proof your garden so everyone can enjoy the backyard.

    Dog Proof Your Garden


    When you are planning your dog proof strategy, it is important to make choices that are first, best for your dog, and second, healthy for the plants. Start with landscaping and ground cover that is easy for dogs to walk on and doesn't imbed in the fur of long-haired pups - but also one that will let the ground transfer moisture so mold doesn't grow and your plants can thrive.

    After choosing the base of your gardens, decide on plants that are going to be tough enough to stand up to a romp by Fido. Smaller pups can probably romp through the violets once or twice without a lot of damage but a Labrador may not be so gentle. If you have a rambunctious pup, your best bet might be a hearty foliage garden full of hostas with just a few special annuals scattered about.

    And finally, decide on a grass that will withstand your pups outdoor visits. Artificial lawn will wash up in the rain or with a pressure washer while sturdier grasses can handle the urine burn better than delicate grass varieties. There is also food additives for your pup that will reduce the nitrogen in the urine, stopping the lawn burn and topical treatments  for after Fido does his duty. It is best to review all of your options and make the choice that is best for you and your family.

    Vegetable gardens will typically have a fence to keep out all the critters so it isn't quite as important to follow all of these tips but they are still good to keep in mind.

    Most of all, make it a priority to not choose any plants that could be toxic or cause allergic reactions in your dogs or cats.

    This post was posted in Puppy Parties, Tips and Tricks and was tagged with Pet Nutrition, Pet Grooming, Pet Safety

  • Posted on March 28, 2014 by Brenda Knutson

    artolog / Foter / CC BY-NC

    Giving your dog different food treat rewards for good behavior is a fun and effective way of training. Using a variety of treats will also help keep your dog from getting bored, and keep him interested in training.

    Training treats are best if they are tempting and delicious, small or easy to break into small pieces, easy to carry, and healthy. It is also good to have some that mean less to your pup (like his dog food) and more valuable treats (like meat) so you can reward less important or more important reactions appropriately.

    Use your dog's regular food as treats:

    • Dry dog food: If your dog likes his dry food enough to do tricks for it, you can use it for training.  This works for less important training, not as valuable reactions, and dogs on a diet. One way to make dry food more exciting is to put it in a paper bag with some small pieces of bacon for a few hours to let it soak up some of the scent.
    • Wet/canned food: You can put this in a jar or bowl, and give one bite or lick per trick.

    "People Food" makes great dog treats:

    • Chopped fresh meat: You can dry fresh meat out a bit in the microwave by cooking it uncovered for 30 seconds at a time. Any meat works well. If you are, however, using a high fat meat like sausage only use a small amount or your pup can get an upset tummy.
    • Jar baby food, meat flavored: Give your dog one lick per trick. You can even reuse the jars by refilling them with yogurt or peanut butter.
    • Cheese: Mozzarella, Cheddar and Colby work well as they are not sticky or crumbly. String cheese is also great for training since it is convenient & can break into small pieces easily.
    • Chopped veggies, like green beans: Some veggies, like raw carrots, are not always digested well but are healthy and may just "come out" looking the same as they went in. This makes them great for a dog on a diet!
    • Chopped fruit, like apples: Dogs love fruits, and it is also a healthier option. You should always check to be sure a fruit is not dangerous for a dog before using, for example grapes, peaches and apricots are NOT good for dogs. Some good options are apples, bananas, blueberries, strawberries and watermelon.

    Store Bought Treats: When buying store bought treats, look for high quality, healthy ingredients like meat, cheese, eggs, nuts, etc. and try to avoid ingredients that you are not familiar with.

    Homemade Dog Training Treats: A great way to save money on treats and keep your dog healthy and happy is to make your own training treats.

    Tuna Training Bars:

    • 1  6-oz. can tuna in water, undrained
    • 1 egg
    • ½ cup rice or oat flour
    • Parmesan cheese

    Mash the tuna and water in a bowl with a fork to get the clumps out, then liquefy in a blender or food processor. Add extra water (in very small amounts) if needed to liquefy completely. Pour into a bowl and add flour. This should be the consistency of a cake mix. Spread into a greased or sprayed square cake pan. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. When done, the edges will pull away and the texture will be like putty. Use a pizza cutter to slice into small squares. These freeze great, and dogs love them!

    Turkey Training Treats:

    • 2 pounds ground turkey (pure turkey, not turkey sausage)
    • 2 eggs
    • 2 cups oatmeal
    • 1 cup Parmesan cheese

    Mix all ingredients together and pat into a greased loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes. Cool completely, then cut into thick strips as these do not hold together when slicing into small squares. Freeze unused portions and keep the portions you're using refrigerated. These have the consistency of meatloaf. When you are using the treats, break off pieces of the strips to give to your dog.

    This post was posted in Puppy Parties, Recipes, Tips and Tricks and was tagged with Pet Nutrition, Training, Dog Training, Recipes

  • Posted on March 17, 2014 by Yvette Falkner

    Want a treat for your special pooch to celebrate Saint Patrick's Day? Here it is! I found a yummy treat that includes green beans which are a great source of  potassium, Vitamin A and C for your dog. Here is the simple recipe I found on dailypuppy.com below. You can also include a small amount of green food coloring if you wish to make them extra special!










    St. Patrick's Day Dog Biscuits

    Pulse these items in a food processor:

    • 1/2 cup of green beans (drain liquid)
    • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
    • 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil
    • 3 teaspoons of applesauce

    Then add these items to the mixture:

    • knead 1 cup of flour to mixture
    • Add 1/4 cup of warm milk to soften dough

    Roll the dough on a floured surface, approximately 1/2 thick, then use cookie cutters to make fun shapes.

    Lastly, bake biscuits on cookie sheet in a 325 degree oven

    Enjoy your special treat pooches!

    This post was posted in Puppy Parties, Recipes and was tagged with Pet Nutrition

  • Posted on February 3, 2014 by Michelle Thatcher

    Well the groundhog seen its shadow and the verdict is in.  SIX more weeks of Winter!! Forty two days or exactly 1008 hours before Spring makes its grand entrance. For pet owners that means we have 60,480 minutes to get our furry friends ready for warmer weather. The clock is ticking 3,628,800 seconds to go, are you ready? Here are some important things to keep in mind as you prepare your four-legged friends for Spring.

    the Chip
    NontrivialMatt / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

     Schedule a Check-Up:   A visit to your vet will ensure your pet has all the latest vaccinations, is tested for heart worm and treated for the dreaded flea and tick season. A clean bill of health is the first step in making sure your pet is ready for Spring time activities.



    Playing Fetch
    MSVG / Foter / CC BY

    Exercise: During the winter months pets often spend more time indoors.  They tend to get less exercise and even though it takes more calories to maintain their winter coat and stay warm many animals can put on a few extra pounds.  Now is the time to start shedding those extra pounds.  As the weather warms getting back into a daily exercise routine can be very beneficial for your pets health.  A visit to a local park where your pet can run and play is just one of the many ways you can kick-start your Spring exercise routine.

    More Please...
    vmabney / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

    Nutrition: Proper diet is equally important in preparing your pets for Spring.  Whether your pet needs to slim down or you're just looking to maintain a healthy meal plan many fruits and vegetables such as apples, bananas, pears, blueberries, broccoli, carrots, pumpkin, and celery make great healthy snacks for your pet.   Remember to wash and remove any seeds before feeding them to your pet.



    2005_1003_Doggy House SPA
    Paige@Flickr / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

    Grooming & Pampering: Pets that feel better are happier, act friendlier and definitely  have more energy.   Grooming is a great way to bond with your pet but aside from daily brushing, weekly baths and an occasional trim, why not treat your pet to a day at the spa.  Many pet salons offer high end services, such as manicures, pedicures and spa treatments.  Remember a pampered pet is a happy pet!

    Lastly now is a great time to freshen up your pets sleeping area. Whether your pet is an indoor or outside pet, now is the time to replace bedding, toys and other items that winter has taken its toll on.  The clock is ticking, but if you start now you'll have plenty of time to get your pet ready for SPRING!!






    This post was posted in Puppy Parties, Tips and Tricks and was tagged with Pet Nutrition, Pet Grooming

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