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10 Reasons to Use Coconut Oil for Your Dog

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Whether you cook with it, spread it on toast, lather it on dry skin or create hydrating masks for your hair, chances are you’ve used coconut oil and loved its versatility and natural, healthy goodness. If you share your home with a dog, you may have noticed him perk up whenever you unscrew the lid of the jar. Begging shouldn’t be rewarded, but in this case, you may want to reconsider. Coconut oil is actually good for dogs! It offers our canine companions many superfood benefits. Here are 10 reasons your furry friend needs this tropical treasure.

  1. It improves skin and coat health. Applied topically or taken orally, coconut oil can help relieve dogs of issues associated with dry skin, allergies and fleas.
  2. It’s soothing. Bites, stings or cuts? Apply coconut oil to the skin to help alleviate the discomfort.
  3. It’s a great moisturizer. You probably use coconut oil to nourish your own hair and skin, and it also works to hydrate your pup’s. Add it to your doggy shampoo or into his skin after a bath. Let it absorb for five minutes and then rinse off.
  4. It supports digestion. Coconut oil can help with digestion and the absorption of nutrients. If your dog suffers from any tummy issues, your vet might recommend adding a scoop to your dog’s food.
  5. It minimizes odor. Coconut can work as doggy deodorant and help stomp the stench.
  6. It freshens breath. Dog got bad breath? Trying brushing his teeth with coconut oil! Some pet owners, often dismayed at the prospect of brushing canine teeth, use it as toothpaste.
  7. It helps maintain healthy weight. Coconuts contain good, healthy fats and the oil has fewer calories than other fats.
  8. It’s fuel. Because it’s absorbed quickly by the body, coconuts helps increase energy, helping overweight dogs get the exercise they need.
  9. It’s an all-around all-star. Whether you’ve got a sedentary senior or energetic puppy, coconut oil could help maintain brain, hormone, joint and bone health.
  10. It tastes good! Most dogs love the flavor. Like peanut butter, they’ll lick it right off the spoon.

Convinced? Yes! Now what?

Virgin and unrefined coconut oils are usually best. Unrefined oils, hand or cold-pressed from fresh coconuts, retain most of the nutrients. Dogs react differently to coconut oil, so be sure to start with a small amount and gradually work up to 1 tablespoon per 30 pounds of body weight or 1 teaspoon per 10 pounds. Coconut could act as a laxative, so if your dog’s stool gets runny, use less coconut oil and add a bit of pumpkin.

Is Pumpkin More Than a Passing Fad For Your Dog?

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BY GREG ALDRICH, PHD ON OCTOBER 7, 2014

Could pumpkin ever be more than a petfood novelty?

Fiber potential and other nutritional possibilities make this gourd a promising alternative petfood ingredient.

Despite the seasonal and holiday affiliations they adorn, pumpkin can be found in various petfood applications year-round. Pumpkin, especially canned pumpkin, has been a staple in the raw petfood feeder’s arsenal where it is used as a fiber source to help alleviate constipation that can be an issue with this feeding plan. Could pumpkin be more and does it make good sense for a pet’s diet?

According to the USDA  Nutrient Database for Standard Reference (2014), raw pumpkin is ~92% moisture. If we expressed the other nutrients on an air-dry basis (~10% moisture) to help compare it with other dry starches, a “flour” of pumpkin would be around 10.5% crude protein, 1% fat, 8.5% ash and 70% carbohydrate (by difference). Approximately 8% of this carbohydrate comes from dietary fiber and 42% from total sugars, with the remaining 50% presumably as starch. Pumpkin is a very rich source of potassium, contains meaningful quantities of vitamin C and is also a significant source of the yellow and orange pigmented carotenoids. Canned pumpkin and canned pumpkin pie filling (includes the pie spices) do not differ substantially from raw pumpkin as it regards nutrient profile.

Another commonly available component of pumpkin processing are the seeds. The whole seed is about 18% protein and 19% fat, with just under 4% ash and around 55% carbohydrate. The carbohydrate fraction is nearly 1/3 dietary fiber with the remainder likely comprised as starch. The seeds are rich in potassium and are also a rich source of linoleic acid (C18:2). The dried pumpkin seed kernels (commonly known as pepitas) differ slightly due to removal of the seed hull and are reported to be around 30% protein, nearly 50% fat and 6% total dietary fiber with a small amount of soluble sugars. Like the whole seed, the kernels are a good source of potassium, and contain appreciable quantities of phosphorus and a significant amount of linoleic acid (>20%).

Further, even though the carbohydrate level is high in pumpkin, it may be more concentrated as soluble sugars and fiber rather than functional starches. This could have substantial effects on the appearance (browning of products) and utilization by the pet (stool quality). In other words, moderation may be key.

No evidence of toxicity  or unintended consequences from feeding pumpkin to pets can be readily found in the literature. Generally, it is assumed to be well liked by dogs, but cats are indifferent to pumpkin as a single food item.

The incorporation of pumpkin into petfood looks promising as an alternative ingredient. Perhaps not as a total replacement for functional starches, but certainly as a source of fiber and potentially other nutritional benefits. Beyond working out issues with supply and better defining its form and handling properties best suited to the petfood industry, there is an immediate need to validate the optimal use rate in dog and cat diets and to identify where issues and benefits might occur.

Giving Back

Since our inception one year ago, we have been so proud to donate our products and time to various rescue organizations across the country. We are happy to help dogs in need when we can, and have met some wonderful two-legged individuals as well.

This weekend, on Saturday, April 11th in Lake Worth, Florida we are taking part in a VEGAN Festival. Not only are amazing vegan chefs from South Florida cooking up some great dishes, but there will be adoptions and funds being raised for Saving Grace & Her Furry Friends as well as the Community Caring Center of Boynton Beach.

We don’t go anywhere without our famous Cheesy Pup Fries, but not to worry, PB Oat Paw Prints and Apple Pumpkin Pooches are both Vegan! Check it out and we hope to see you there!

Bean Scene Vegan Fest

Bean Scene Vegan Fest

To Kickstart or NOT? 

Most recently, I too, had this very dilemma. Only, I didn’t realize it actually was a dilemma until after I started the campaign and arduous task of asking every friend, family member and stranger I came in contact with for money.

As a new small business owner and “budding artisanal entrepreneur” (as I like to think of myself), I assumed nothing ventured nothing gained as I read up on all I could on how to launch a successful Kickstarter campaign. To say this was a learning experience was putting it lightly.

Besides the actual work and preparation needed to just get the “project” live and online, there was the daunting task of spreading the word, asking for favors, begging for money and using every known form of communication from social media to smoke signals. Perhaps for a natural born sales person, this task is like every other. For an independent person who has been relatively self-sufficient in every aspect of my career and personal life this far…this was an undertaking like no other. I’d be lying if I didn’t question the ease of getting people to donate a kidney as being easier than asking for money.

I thought my goals and ambitions were clear and focused and my rewards fair and enticing. Apparently not everyone felt that way or perhaps misunderstood that they were supporting “me” and didn’t actually need to have a dog to back the project. I had no idea what to anticipate, so I kept my goal relatively low (while still being worthwhile) and promised myself not to expect much or be disappointed.

What I discovered was a study in psychology, human nature, generosity and and a lesson in never judging a book by its cover. I was blown away with responses and support from people I hadn’t spoke to or seen in 10, 20 or even 30 years — wishing me luck and supplying words of support and encouragement. Friends who I know are having hard financial times were the first to step up, many of whom only wishing they could do or give more. Distant family and strangers that don’t even know me showered me with love and money – all of which I’m so thankful for.

So what if someone you know, people perhaps you consider to be friends, don’t back your project? What then? How do you pick up and continue when they have chosen NOT to support you? Be prepared for that situation and dilemma. Needless to say, for me, it wasn’t  about the amount of money per se, but simply the gesture of good will and support. The financial equivalent of saying “I believe in you, what you’re doing, and that you will succeed!” Maybe some were offended? Others thinking I’m looking for a handout? Some not willing to register with Amazon? Who knows what motivates someone else.

As I bask in the aftermath of a successful campaign, I cannot help but question if it was all worth it in the end. Did I lose friends and alienate others? Quite possibly. Will I hold grudges against those who hid in the shadows while I groveled for help? Quite likely. I just wish I knew now what I didn’t back then….one month ago.

I’m not sure what I would tell someone considering a crowd funding campaign other than what I personally experienced. The highs and lows and generally exhausting process that accompanies it. In the end, it wasn’t about the money. It was an affirmation of those around me thinking I have a great idea and wanting to be a part of it or just wanting to give back in some small way as I have done, and will continue to do for others.

All I can say is the old cliche’ is true…..there is no such thing as a free lunch my friend. And plan on paying a 10% fee on top of it.

We LOVE Halo

What’s not to love? An all-natural dog food company with quality ingredients from the USA, great company values, sense of social responsibility and Ellen Degeneres as an owner. Halo has been very generous donating to various shelters and rescue groups and now they’ve got a fantastic scial media campaign they’ve launch called #HaloFeeditForward. Just snap a photo of your dog and tag it, Halo will then donate a meal to a shelter. Really!

Nicky and Molly love the Spot’s Stew Toy & Small Breed variety. It’s bite sized nuggets of turkey, duck and pheasant (so fancy!) that is perfect size for the little guys. We mix ours with a homemade mix of yummy fresh homemade food but you can enjoy it on it’s own.

If you haven’t already, be sure to check them out and support this great brand. Watch the video by clicking the banner below.

Halo

 

Go iFetch!

What dog doesn’t love to play ball and “go fetch” over…and over…and over….again! iFetch has the solution for the savvy pup, an automatic ball dispenser that shoots out 1.5″ balls perfect for little guys with lots of energy. Your enthusiastic little friend can keep him or herself busy for hours by replenishing the ball back into the machine and watch it shoot out another…and another…and another.

iFetch sells for $99.95 and additional balls are $10.00 available online 

fetch ball dispenser

ifetch ball dispenser

 

Green Market Season is Here!

We kicked off the South Florida green market season with a bang. Opening days at Palm Beach Gardens and West Palm Beach were fantastic – filled with crowds, dogs and really interesting vendors and food items.

West Palm Beach market will be every Saturday through Spring from 9-1 and the location couldn’t be better. Right on Clematis Street by the intracoastal we are surrounded by palms trees, water, yachts and of course yummy food, plants, crafts and tons of friendly dogs! They even have an outdoor oasis with get this…$10 unlimited mimosas, doesn’t get much better than that.

We will be at the Palm Beach Gardens Green Market the first and third Sunday of each month and every Sunday of December! No dogs allowed at this one but that didn’t stop the serious green shoppers from picking up our treats while they shopped for produce, snacks, and serious eats. This market starts at 8 with the early risers and ends at 1:00.

Tell your South Florida friends, or better yet, come by and say hi!

Our First Photo Shoot!

Last week we shot our first promotional video at the New Rochelle Humane Society. What a blast working with my old collaborator and friend Helen Polise and all the amazing rescue pups at the shelter. Keep a look out for our videos to be aired! For more info and details subscribe to our newsletter!

 

 Coming Along

kalekrunch

We’ve been working like little elves here trying to perfect our recipes as well as come up with new ones. We are listening to what our eaters and their humans want, and it looks like we are jumping on the kale craze soon with our new Kale Krunchers. (no Kardashian affiliation…unless of course they want to buy some!)

Kale Krunchers will be wheat free, dairy free, soy, free, corn free and made with fresh veggies. Baked to a delicious “Krispy Krunch” we think they will be a big hit.

Stay tuned for the official release, and remember….you CAN eat these treats, but please…save them for the dog!

Our first green market  

Last week we launched our line of all-natural gourmet treats online as well as at the Whole Foods Market Greenmarket in sunny Wellington, FL

There were lots of yummy organic and healthy vendors as well as food trucks and of course a bounty of all things yum inside at Whole Foods.

Thanks to all the 2 and 4 legged friends who came by to say hi and try our snacks. We will be here again this week, July 31st from 3-8 pm.

Hope to see you there but if you can’t make it we’re always just a few clicks away…

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wfm greenmarket

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