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Optimum Dog Nutrition

Quality Nutrition for Healthy Development

I am a firm believer that pets deserve the best diet possible.  Quality dog nutrition helps to ensure that pets live long, healthy lives.  Proper dog nutrition produces beautiful poodle coats with shiny hair and healthy skin.  It also reduces health issues from food allergies, such as ear infections and eye staining.

My Moyen Poodle puppies eat NutriSource Small and Medium Breed Puppy food, which is made in Minnesota.  I used to feed Acana Grasslands to my puppies.  I love Acana and Orijen grain-free foods for my adults, but I found puppies needed grain in their food for better formed stools.  NutriSource Small and Medium Breed Puppy food receives 5 stars on  I recommend switching to a high quality grain-free food after puppy has a chance to grow and mature a little.

I leave food out all of the time for both my adults and puppies.  If families prefer to feed their puppies at set times, I recommend letting them eat all they want two to three times a day, depending on the age and size of the puppy.  My adults have access to food all of the time, and they are all a healthy weight.  They do not overeat with food that is not full of grains and fillers.  

I recently starting rotating different Acana dog food recipes with my Poodle adults.  Rotating protein sources is healthy for their digestive systems and general wellness.  I alternate their protein sources using Acana Singles Duck and Pear, Acana Singles Pork and Squash, Acana Singles Lamb and Apple, Acana Grasslands, and Acana Appalachian Ranch.  I mix Orijen Six Fish with their food all of the time so that they receive the benefits of fish oils in their daily diet.  Fish oil helps to keep skin and hair beautifully healthy.  Alaska Naturals Salmon oil is an alternative to mixing Orijen Six Fish.  I use Koha canned dog food for an occasional treat and when I need to ensure my adults have food in their stomachs before giving medication that needs to be given with food (like Bravecto).  My adults LOVE Acana freeze dried treats.  

I recommend as a resource for families that want to choose different dog foods. rates foods based on their ingredients.  Corn, wheat, and soy are the most common food allergens for dogs.  Chicken is an allergen for some dogs.  For families that choose a different adult food than Acana/Orijen, I recommend choosing a grain-free food with meat-based protein sources.  

In 2017, I started giving NuVet Plus vitamins to my adults and puppies.  I believe NuVet helps to ensure my adults have all of the vitamins and minerals that they need for heathy immune support and digestion.  NuVet helps to ensure that my puppies start out with the best nutritional support for their growing bodies.  My dogs and puppies all LOVE these vitamin is like a daily treat for them.  I send a sample of NuVet Plus vitamins home with each puppy.  For families that plan to continue giving them vitamins, I recommend ordering NuVet prior to bringing puppy home.   If you call 800-474-7044 to order, they will ask for my order number 36603.

“Doggy breath” is never a problem in my house.  I always have plenty of antlers, raw bones, and Himalayan chews for my dogs.  Raw bones and antlers help to keep a dog’s teeth and gums clean and healthy.  Kiaya is enjoying a Rawsome rib bone in the picture above.  Raw bones and antlers are perfect for teething puppies and lifelong oral health.  Professional cleanings may still be necessary, but they are not needed as often with healthy chewing habits.  Raw bones do not splinter, and the bone marrow is a healthy addition to the canine diet.  Himalayan chews do not last as long as raw bones and antlers, but they are a healthy chewing option that I use as chewing treats.  I do not recommend rawhides for treats or chewing.  Rawhides can cause an obstruction in the intestines.

Nummy Tum-Tum plain, canned pumpkin is very healthy for the canine digestive system.  Puppies can have sensitive systems with food change and/or the stress of going to their new homes.  Please read Stress and Poop.  Pumpkin helps puppies to maintain a healthy stool as they transition into their new homes.  Some puppies lose their appetites with the stress of switching homes.  Plain canned pumpkin and/or plain yogurt help to stimulate their reduced appetites.  Animal Essentials Plant Enzyme and Probiotics is also an excellent product to help support digestive health.  I use probiotics and pumpkin to help puppies with developing digestive systems when they transition from milk to solid food.  

Stainless steel bowls are best for dog dishes.  They are easy to sanitize, and they are durable.  Avoid using a plastic bowl for water.  Plastic bowls can discolor nose pigment.  Some dogs enjoy interactive puzzles and food dispensing toys, such as a Kong Wobbler.  Food dispensing toys sometimes help puppies that loose their appetite when they first go to their new homes.  

When offering food and treats outside of commercial dog food, please be aware of the foods that are poisonous to dogs.  It is also important to ensure your home and yard does not contain plants that are poisonous to dogs.  One of my puppy families had a sago palm tree in their yard.  Unfortunately, they were not aware that the sago palm nuts are extremely poisonous to dogs.  Their dog ate part of the nut and died from liver damage several months later.  The following articles regarding toxic food and plants were published by the ASPCA:

Foods That Are Hazardous To Dogs

17 Poisonous Plants

Kiaya- moyen poodle

Black moyen poodle, Kiaya, enjoying a Rawsome rib bone on the green grass