WHY I STARTED COOKING FOR
In 2015, the youngest of my three dogs was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease. Initially, we suspected/assumed he was contaminated by a tainted dog treat or exposed to a toxin. After numerous tests, the results were inconclusive. We would never know with 100 percent certainty what caused his kidney damage. With a definitive cause behind us, it was time to focus on healing and moving forward.
I learned that one of the most powerful tools in healing any disease is nutrition. Unsatisfied with the ingredients in the commercially produced specialty diets, I opted to home-cook for my dog. This allowed me to control and customize the ingredients. I hired a canine nutritionist to customize a kidney-friendly diet I could cook and balance at home using whole foods and premium supplements.
At first, I had no system in place and quickly became overwhelmed with the amount of time and work needed to shop, cook, prepare and weigh each meal. I had to be exact. I developed a system where I batch-cooked the meals once a week and vacuum-sealed them into single-serve portions to maintain their freshness. It became such an efficient process that I started to make “regular” meals for our other two dogs as well. We were now a fresh-cooked dog food family and the health benefits of this change were clear to see. From shinier coats to more energy and less flatulence, all three of my dogs are thriving with the powerful nutrients they are receiving in the foods I prepare for them.
With a passion for dogs and food, I saw an opportunity to help other pet parents feed fresh-cooked meals and treats to their dogs. So, I left my job as a corporate editor and started Dragonfly Dog Bowl with the vision of becoming the local go-to source for fresh dog food and treats made individually for individual dogs.
After my dog’s diagnosis, I initially felt helpless and devastated. While swimming with my dog one day, a dragonfly greeted us at the pool and began to dance in the air – darting and swooping toward the water. For several minutes, my precious dog swam his little heart out keeping up with his new friend. The scene stopped me in my tracks It was at that moment that I realized my dog didn’t know he was sick and if he did, he wasn’t going to let it deprive him of the joy of today. That day, I saw happiness and hope and a fire was ignited in me. I began to ask more questions and seek solutions. I started with food because that was something as a pet parent that I could do myself. From that point on, I made sure the focus of our journey was love and healing.
The dragonfly symbolizes the ability to overcome hardship and find the positive in all situations. The dragonfly lives “IN” the moment. With its ability to see 360 degrees around itself, it serves as a reminder for us to see beyond our limitations and embrace joy and adaptability.