Fresh Local Foods for Your Dogs and Cats
For many in our area, the weekly trip to the local farmer’s market provides our fresh, seasonal fruits and vegetables and other foods straight from the farm. Having access to clean, healthy foods provide choices which allow us to be healthier and more vibrant. The same is true of companion animals. The less processed the foods, the more macro and micro-nutrients are available to the body, to utilize and help dogs and cats thrive. When feeding your companion animal a dry or canned diet, adding in fresh meaty bones, chicken, duck or turkey necks, fresh vegetables, or incorporating a complete raw diet once or twice a week can have a big impact.
Here in the Washington metro area, there are a number of completely balance and locally produced raw diets available—support our local economy by keeping money circulating in the immediate area.
Answers Raw Diets - This Pennsylvania farm puts a major emphasis on sustainability. Their diets are some of the greenest in terms of a closed loop system. Their offerings include chicken for dogs and cats, beef and pork for dogs and Raw Goat’s Milk, which is one of the best and most complete foods one can give to an animal.
Aunt Jeni’s - Produced in Mt. Rainier, Maryland, this is one of the oldest local raw diets for dogs and cats. Aunt Jeni’s offers a number of protein sources including chicken, turkey, beef and lamb.
Dogs Gone Wild - Packaged and distributed from Baltimore, Dogs Gone Wild offers rich diets that include duck, chicken, turkey, beef and lamb.
The Furry Foodie - Prepared in Virginia, these are raw diets from Ayrshire Farms and are certified humane. The diets are available for both dogs and cats and include rabbit, chicken, turkey, pork, rose veal and beef.
K9 Kraving - Straight from Baltimore, these raw diets are available for dogs primarily, with options ranging from chicken, beef and turkey, to elk and mackerel.
Local distributors, such as The Big Bad Woof, work with a number of local farms to provide fresh organ meats, chicken feet, fresh meaty bones and other items as they are available. These distributors are fortunate to have so many good choices available in the immediate area. In terms of improved health and vitality, a little fresh food goes a long way.
As a companion pet owner, always be sure to make good choices if feeding a dry or canned diet. Avoid corn, wheat, soy and sucrose (yes, sugar). There are some good local foods available like Annamaet and Sammy’s Snacks which are nutrient dense and well balanced. By shopping local, you can enhance the life of your pet and keep local farms alive.
Pennye Jones-Napier is co-owner of The Big Bad Woof® in Old Takoma DC and Hyattsville MD. For more information visit TheBigBadWoof.com.