One thing I never thought I would be doing for my dog Tawny is cooking her food for her. After all, there are nine gazillion bazillion dog foods out there, and many are good to great quality. No reason to ever waste my time doing such a thing, right? I’m a trainer, for Pete’s sake, not a cook.

And then, she got sick. Terribly, horribly sick. To the point where I was scared I would lose her. She literally took herself off her food. Neither I nor the vet could figure out what was wrong, except that her liver numbers were off the charts and she was suddenly incontinent. And she couldn’t keep anything down.

I was terrified and desperate. When I bring a dog into my life, I inject her directly into my soul. My previous soul-pup, Jaspar, was 17 when he passed. Tawny is at least nine…a baby to me. Losing her now was not an option.

I am a problem-solver, so I went to work. I managed to get water and some boiled chicken to stay down. Then I headed out onto the Internet to find out what else I could give her that would give her liver support and nutrition. I found some information and a recipe from a reliable source and started cooking.

My results were:
– From the get-go, Tawny kept everything down (small portions, 4x/day at first!) and immediately started improving
– Her energy came back
– The incontinence went away
– Her shedding decreased substantially
– Her poop is better quality (firmer) than it’s ever been
– She has never been more excited about her food

And her follow-up bloodwork? Perfect.

The vet shook his head. “It usually doesn’t turn out this way,” he said.

I know. Boy, do I know. What a gift I have been given.

Was it just because of the food? I doubt it, but I have nothing else that I can point to that could explain it. And when I see how excited Tawny is, and how bright-eyed and energetic she is — back to doing her figure-eight laps in the yard! — how can I do anything else?

It’s actually kind of fun. I’m doing more research to make sure I give her variety as well as balanced nutrition.

It’s just another way I show my goofy dog love for my girl.