Pookies Pet Nutrition and Bakery
Almost two years ago I made the decision to start feeding our cat healthier food since we had cleaned up our family’s diet. A friend had recommended Innova brand cat food, which after making some calls I found that Pookie’s carried it. At the same time I tried a brand of raw cat food which my cat loved, but I decided to stick with the Innova since it was less messy.
I love that the store is small and pet friendly- owners can bring their cat or dog in while shopping. The staff has always been very friendly, knowledgable and helpful. Besides a wide range of cat and dog food, the store carries pet bedding, toys, and freshly baked dog treats. I will admit that we don’t have a dog but have bought the treats to enjoy for ourselves. They are wheat free and some are vegan….and though they are a little dry, they taste good!
Pookie’s has locations in Winter Park and Ocoee. For more information you can visit Pookies website.
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Timmy’s Toy Chest announced through it’s newsletter that they are now carrying African Pygmy Frogs in Eco-System Aquariums. Each aquarium includes two full-grown male frogs that need to be fed just twice a week (food is available for purchase too). The Eco-System Aquarium is self-contained and doesn’t require a lot of maintenance or upkeep. Owner Lin Hanzelko states:
The Eco-System Aquarium is the coolest. It is a complete system that requires no filters, aeration, or chemicals. There are living rocks in the tank that stabalize the ph and ammonia levels. There is a living snail in the tank. His job is to keep the tank clean and free of algae. There is a piece of bamboo in that tank that provides oxygen for the frogs.
The African Pygmy Frog lives entirely underwater but surfaces to breathe. They are typically earth-toned and weigh just a few ounces. For more information on their behavior, care, or keeping them as pets please visit Wikipedia.
The frogs and eco-aquariums were such a hit that their first stocking sold out in less than one day! They got new frogs in yesterday so stop in and check them out.
Timmy’s Toy Chest is located in Lake Mary in Colonial Town Park. For more information please contact them at 407-804-9877.
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Posted in Animal Advocacy, Natural Pet Care, tagged biodegradable bags, dog, dog poop bags, doody calls, earth paw, poop, poop butler, usa today on March 30, 2009 |
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There are a lot of dogs in the United States… approximately 73 million! That many dogs produce a lot of waste product. Although many dog owners are consistent with picking up after their dogs, unfortunately many others don’t. Many believe that it helps fertilize, or perhaps because it is natural, it is okay to let it sit and decay. Due to the high amount of dogs in the US, dog poop has become an environmental pollutant. Dog poop contains potentially harmful bacteria. In fact, according to a USA Today article, dogs are now third or fourth in the list of contributors to bacteria in contaminated waters. Some of the bacteria that dogs carry are E. coli, salmonella, and giardia. In Clearwater, Florida, it was determined that the contamination of Stevenson Creek was partly due to high bacteria counts from dog feces. The feces were left on the ground and washed out into the creek. Dog poop is not a good fertilizer for your lawn. It can cause burning and discoloration of your grass. Also, I think I can safely say that most people do not like to walk in dog poop!
Picking up after your dog also brings another set of environmental concerns due to plastic bags. Plastic bags are notoriously bad for the environment! What is the solution? Biodegradable bags. You can buy biodegradable bags online at places such as DogPoopBags.com. In May of this year they will be carrying certified 1 year degradable bags (right now it is a 7-10 year degradable time frame). You can get 100 bags with free shipping for $8.99.
For more articles about the environmental impact of dog feces, you can check out these online sources:
□ USA Today
□ Poop Butler
□ Doody Calls
□ Earth Paw
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There’s a great coupon in the back of Moms Like Me magazine this month. (You may know this magazine as “Central FL Moms” since they recently changed the name.) The coupon is for $10 off a $40 purchase at the new Whole Foods Market on Turkey Lake Road.
You can pick this magazine up for free around town. Check their website for locations if you’re not familiar with it. Oh..wow! I just checked the main Whole Foods site and found a printable coupon that can be used at ANY location. Check it out here.
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Posted in Animal Advocacy, Food and Nutrition, Health and Safety, Health Food Stores, Natural Pet Care, Natural Products, Uncategorized, tagged ancestral diets, animal-welfare, barf diets, biologically appropriate raw food diets, canine nutrition, cat allergies, cat chronic ear problems, cat food, cat food allergies, cat supplements, Central Florida cat food, Central Florida dog food, Central Florida pet food, Central Florida pet supplies, dehydrated raw food, dog allergies, dog chewing at feet, dog chronic ear problems, dog food, dog food allergies, dog supplements, dry itchy skin, Embark, feline nutrition, Force, hair loss, healthy cat treats, healthy dog treats, healthy pet foods, homemade cat food, homemade dog food, homemade pet food, homemade pet food recipes, homemade whole pet food diets, human quality pet food, immunocompromised pet food, Louise's Pet Connection, Lucy Postins, natural pet food products, natural pet food stores, natural pet products, Orlando area healthy pets, Orlando cat food, Orlando dog food, Orlando pet food, Orlando Pet Pantry, Orlando pet supplies, pawlanthropy, pet food, pet friendly work environment, philanthropy, Preference, Prowl, raw food diet, safe raw food for pets, The Honest Kitchen, The Pet Pantry, Thrive, Verve, whole foods diet on July 9, 2008 |
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Simon the puppy playing with his human brother! Photo courtesy of Alexandra Holt.
When Simon the puppy became part of the family this year I knew that he’d join the kitties and the humans in eating a human grade whole foods diet. I set off into the kitchen and whipped up my first batch of homemade dog food. Simon loved it and I loved making it for him, but I wondered if I should be feeding him a raw food diet. After all, in the wild, dogs certainly don’t cook their food! But my food, and Simon’s too, comes from the grocery store. What if the chicken or beef I was buying him was contaminated with some sort of bacteria or parasite? I just didn’t have enough control over the ingredients to ensure that Simon was going to avoid illness, so I cooked it and reassured myself that he was eating a fabulous diet that most dogs could only dream of. Then I heard about The Honest Kitchen and discovered the answer to my raw food conundrum! I really can offer Simon a safe raw food diet without moving to a farm!
About The Honest Kitchen
The Honest Kitchen is a private, family owned company located in San Diego, California. Lucy Postins started cooking for her Rhodesian Ridgeback puppy back in 2000. By 2001 she had developed a recipe using all human grade raw ingredients that used dehydration as the method to preserve the food safely without removing any of the nutritional value. In 2002, The Honest Kitchen was officially born after they located a human food manufacturer who could produce their food on a large scale. They are a company committed to quality canine and feline nutrition.
Whole Dog Journal - 2007 Editor
- All products and ingredients are 100% human food grade.
- All products are produced in an FDA approved human food producing facility.
- All meats are hormone and antibiotic free.
- All fruits and vegetables are GMO free.
- All grains are certified organic.
- No chemical preservatives, no by-products, no added salt or sugar, no chemical preservatives, no artificial colors.
- Great for dogs and cats with allergies – no beet pulp, rice, wheat, corn or soy (common allergens that cause dry, itchy skin, hair loss/dullness, lack of energy, chronic ear problems, chewing at feet, etc.).
The Honest Kitchen knows that eating the exact same meal day after day isn’t good for people and it isn’t good for our pets either. They offer a wide range of products with quality, nutritious, human quality foods. It is easy to incorporate these products as a base for homemade whole pet food diets or BARF (biologically appropriate raw food) diets, or the product can be used as a stand alone meal (with the exception of the Preference product – you have to add your own protein).
About The Honest Kitchen’s Dehydration Process
Dehydration is simply the process where water is removed from a substance. When you dehydrate a food, all of the nutrients of the food remains behind. All that is missing is the water!
- Fruits and vegetables are dried at temperatures below 104*F and are still considered raw.
- Meat and eggs are dried at temperatures above 120*F – high enough to kill bacteria without destroying the nutrients. This drying method makes the meat/eggs safe enough for human consumption and allows products to be made in the human food manufacturing facility used by The Honest Kitchen.
Taking water out prevents:
- enzymatic activity (which could cause food to decompose (rot!))
- growth of bacteria, yeast, and molds
Taking water out does NOT destroy or kill food enzymes. It simply suspends their activity until the food is rehydrated.
The dehydration process allows The Honest Kitchen
to provide human grade raw pet foods with all of the natural nutrients present. There is no high heat processing or extrusion used and is therefore very highly concentrated nutrition. This process also makes the product safe for all dogs and cats at all stages of life and all stages of health. Even an immunocompromised
pet can enjoy this product!
About the Honest Kitchen Products
Getting your first box of The Honest Kitchen
product is a unique sensory experience! The first thing you’ll notice is that it comes in a box. The box is made from 100% American recycled, biodegradable paper and is printed with soy-based inks. The oval cut out in the front of the box allows you a sneak peak of the food inside. You’ll be surprised to feel how light the box is! Removing the water from the product during the dehydration process allows The Honest Kitchen
to package 17 pounds of food (once rehydrated) into a 4 pound box! No more heavy bags of food to lug into the house!
Time to open the box and check out this product! Open the lid and you’ll see that the food is further packaged in partially post-consumer recycled plastic to help keep the product fresh. Puncture the plastic and a burst of fresh spinach
, and rosemary
scents flood your nose. I glanced again at the ingredients, and sure enough, those were all in the list along with dehydrated chicken, sweet potatoes
, and organic quinoa
. Simon perked up at the great smells and came to join me in the kitchen. He waited patiently at my feet as I followed the very easy to read directions on the back of the box of Thrive
- “Mix 1 cup food with 1-1.5 cups of warm water.
- Stir well and let hydrate 5-10 minutes.
- Mix in your pet’s choice of vegetables, fruit, raw or cooked meats or raw meaty bones – or serve just as it is!”
Add the water into the food and it turns into a soup like consistency. The clock ticked closer to 5 minutes and I could visibly see that the food was rehydrating and thickening. After 5 minutes, I could no longer fend off Simon’s begging and gave him his bowl, serving it “just as it is.” He dove into the food with great gusto and licked the bowl clean.
About the Honest Kitchen Culture
Not sure how much of your own ingredients to add? Not sure which product to pick? Give them a call! Lucy Postins
, the company founder, was happy to talk with me by phone to discuss Simon’s particular nutritional needs. Talking with Lucy gave me an insight into the corporate culture at The Honest Kitchen.
- Pawlanthropy is The Honest Kitchen’s philanthropic program. In 2007, The Honest Kitchen donated 25% of their net profits to a number of animal-welfare, humanitarian and environmental charitable causes.
- The Honest Kitchen sincerely believe in doing their part to protect and preserve the planet by using recycled materials and the best quality products possible in their foods.
- This company of 11 human and 7 canine employees seem to really enjoy their pet friendly work environment and are devoted to making “pets lives better everywhere.”
Simon definitely loved this high quality, nutrient dense, human grade, dehydrated raw food meal and I loved being able to serve him this simple to prepare food from this extraordinary company. The Honest Kitchen
products can be found in the Orlando/Central Florida area at The Pet Pantry
and Louise’s Pet Connection
or can be ordered directly from The Honest Kitchen
Dog food products
Preference: Foundation-Mix for Homemade, Grain-Free Dog Food – Just add meat!
- Thrive: Natural, Gluten-free Dehydrated Raw Dog Food
- Force: Dehydrated Raw, Grain-Free Dog Food, wheat and gluten free
- Embark: Dehydrated Raw, Low-Carb Dog Food
- Verve: Dehydrated Raw, Organic Beef and grains
Cat food products
- Prowl: Dehydrated raw cat food
Dog and Cat Supplements and Treats also available!
Check out these other articles for more on natural pet food diets!
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Posted in Animal Advocacy, Deals Around Town, Food and Nutrition, Health and Safety, Health Food Stores, Natural Pet Care, Natural Products, Uncategorized, tagged Ark Naturals, Boston Terrier Rescue of FL, Candy's Cats, cat food delivery, Cavalier Rescue USA, central Florida home delivery service, Central Florida Pug Rescue, Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul, Coastal Poodle Rescue, Compassionate Canines, Diamond Pet Foods, dog food delivery, Eagle Pack, Evanger’s, Gold Coast Greyhounds, Golden Retriever Rescue of Mid FL, Greyhound Pets of America, Greyhound Ranch, healthy pet food, Holistic Select, Innova, Lab Retriever Rescue of Florida, Lucky Star Cavalier Rescue, Merrick, Natural Balance, Nutro, Old Mother Hubbard, Orijen, Orlando natural pet food, Orlando Pet Pantry, Orlando Pug Rescue & Adoption, Orlando whole foods pet diets, pet food delivery, Pet Pantry, pet supply delivery, Premium Edge, Prism, Pug Rescue of Florida, Snack 21, Solid Gold, SPCA of Central Florida, The Honest Kitchen, The Pet Pantry, Wellness, Wysong, Zukes on July 7, 2008 |
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Muggs, the bull terrier, shows off The Pet Pantry delivery van! Photo courtesy of Alexandra Holt.
Here’s welcome relief for skyrocketing gas prices – a home delivery service that brings high quality pet supplies right to your door! The Pet Pantry has been in business for the past 4 years making home deliveries to 6 central Florida counties. Locally owned and operated by sister-in-laws Ginny Blurton and Inga Mueller, The Pet Pantry offers human quality pet foods at a variety of price points, making it affordable and convenient to feed your furry friends a safe, healthy, and nutritious diet. You don’t even need to worry about being home when they stop by. They’ll weather protect your order and leave it at your front door!
The Pet Pantry strives to be environmentally and socially responsible in their business practices:
- Their employees are able to telecommute and live within 3 miles of their Longwood warehouse.
- They make 40-50 deliveries a day in their delivery van. Carefully planned out routes help them drive and work smart – typically they drive less than 3 1/2 miles between stops. Their customers save on gas expenses and reduce the impact on the environment by having only one vehicle on the road instead of 40-50 customers driving individual cars out to a pet food store.
- The Pet Pantry makes regular contributions of both money and food to many area animal rescue groups:
Greyhound Pets of America
Golden Retriever Rescue of Mid FL
Gold Coast Greyhounds
Lucky Star Cavalier Rescue
SPCA of Central Florida
Boston Terrier Rescue of FL
Pug Rescue of Florida
Central Florida Pug Rescue
Lab Retriever Rescue of Florida
Cavalier Rescue USA
Coastal Poodle Rescue
Orlando Pug Rescue & Adoption
Some of the product lines offered:
The Pet Pantry
Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover’s Soul
Diamond Pet Foods
The Honest Kitchen
Old Mother Hubbard
Most of the products carried by The Pet Pantry are listed on Whole Dog Journal’s Top Dog Food list!
The Pet Pantry also carries pet litter, toys, treats, grooming supplies, flea control and supplements! If you don’t see an item that you need, let them know! Special requests aren’t a problem!
“Our vision for the Pet Pantry is to someday offer daily delivery in Central Florida – to be a one-stop shop for all your pet’s needs, providing quality products- next-day delivery to your door.” Ginny Blurton, The Pet Pantry
Cost of delivery:
Free for orders over $25 within their regular delivery area. $5 charge applies to orders under $25
Where they deliver:
All of Orange, Seminole, Brevard counties, most of Lake, Osceola, and Volusia counties.
When they deliver:
Each area is geographically divided by zip codes – check out their zip code delivery schedule online or call to find out when they’ll be in your area.
Want to stop by and pick up your supplies instead?
Be sure to give them a call before you head over to their Longwood warehouse – they’re happy to arrange to meet up with you. The phone number is 407-331-7387.
They offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee, free samples, and they don’t require a contract! Simply place a standing order for regular delivery or place an order by 2:00 pm the day before your area’s scheduled delivery day.
Want another reason to have your pet supplies delivered by The Pet Pantry? You’ll love their Join the Pack Program! Refer a friend and both of you will get 10% off of your next order!
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Posted in Animal Advocacy, Fun Stuff for Kids, Health and Safety, Natural Pet Care, tagged 4th of July, Altamonte Springs fireworks, alternative fireworks, at home fireworks, central Florida public displays of fireworks, Disney fireworks, firework safety, fireworks, glowstick, green fireworks, Independence Day, Orlando fireworks, pets and fireworks, public displays of fireworks, Sanford fireworks, sparklers, wintergreen candies on June 18, 2008 |
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Many families have traditions of lighting fireworks in their backyards, even handing lit sparklers to toddlers as they run in dizzying circles in the yard. This is a safety disaster waiting to happen and a practice that needs to be abandoned. Leave lighting fireworks to the professionals this year! Take your family out to see a public firework display as a safer alternative to lighting fireworks at home.
Fireworks are dangerous!
The National Council on Fireworks Safety reports that every year nearly 10,000 people are treated for injuries related to at-home fireworks. It is estimated that as many as 45-50% of those injured are children.
Never use homemade or illegal fireworks – their use accounts for 30-35% of all firework related injuries!
Never allow a child to play with or light fireworks – even sparklers! Sparklers get very hot: over 1800*F! That’s hot enough to melt gold! They are simply not safe, especially in the hands of a child. Six states have already banned all consumer fireworks, including sparklers.
- Try offering glowsticks as a safer, non-toxic alternative to sparklers this year. If you have a budding scientist in your house, you can even incorporate a science lesson on chemiluminescence (the science behind why glowsticks glow)!
- Older kids (grown ups too!) might enjoying chewing on wintergreen candies in the dark and watching each other to see the resulting blue sparks. Your budding scientist can tell everyone about triboluminescence!
The American Academy of Pediatrics
states that “people should take their children to organized public displays of fireworks instead of risking injury or death with at-home fireworks
.” Join your neighbors and friends this year at one of these great events:
Fireworks terrify animals!
Here’s another reason to abandon the tradition of at-home fireworks – they terrify animals. Pets are not allowed at public firework displays and for good reason. The sudden and very loud explosions are very damaging to our pets’ sensitive ears. Animal shelters report a surge in lost pets during fireworks season as petrified animals flee for safety.
- Keep your pets inside in case your neighbors decide to set off fireworks.
- Turn on some soothing music inside the house and dim the lights to help reduce your pets’ anxiety level.
- Make sure that your pets’ ID tags have current contact information in case they run away.
- Do not bring your pets to a public fireworks display.
Fireworks are a threat to wildlife and the environment!
Even though public firework displays are a better option than at-home fireworks, many environmentalists argue that traditional gunpowder fueled fireworks displays are damaging to our health, wildlife, and the environment.
- heavy metals are used in fireworks to produce the brilliant colors and can contaminate the water supply
- physical debris from fireworks litters the ground and bodies of water
- wildlife can eat the debris or become entangled in the remains of expended fireworks
- wildlife become frightened and frenzied during fireworks displays just like our companion pets
Alternatives to traditional gunpowder fueled fireworks displays do exist.
- Disney World now uses only compressed air in their displays,
- laser light shows are far less environmentally toxic,
- and nothing beats a good parade.
Have a lot of fun celebrating this Independence Day
while keeping your family safe. If your family tradition has included at-home fireworks in past years, let this year be the start of a new, safer tradition!
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Posted in Animal Advocacy, Book Reviews, Food and Nutrition, Health and Safety, Natural Pet Care, Uncategorized, tagged cats, healthy pet diet, healthy pets, pet food, whole foods pet diet on June 4, 2008 |
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Lucy and Jasper were just plain fat. They were tiny balls of fluff when I adopted the alley cat siblings and just one year later my furry babies were lethargic and visibly overweight. The most exercise they got was running to the food dish. To make matters worse, I was paying top dollar on what I viewed as high quality commercial pet food. Four months ago that all changed when I read the list of ingredients contained in the cat food and started my quest to improve their health.
What I learned was shocking and forever transformed my thoughts on proper pet nutrition:
I learned about a couple of alternatives to feeding my cats commercially prepared foods. A raw food diet made a lot of sense for them, as cats in the wild certainly don’t cook their lizards and mice before eating them. However, I wasn’t comfortable serving my cats raw poultry when I wasn’t 100% sure I trusted the source. I decided on what I felt was the next best thing – a whole foods diet that I prepared in my home.
I opened my copies of The New Natural Cat: a Complete Guide to Finicky Owners and The Whole Pet Diet: Eight Weeks to Great Dogs and Cats and set to changing forever how my pets would eat in my house. I knew that cats are “obligate carnivores” but also learned that they would ingest a small amount of vegetables found in the stomach content of their prey and that whole grains can mimic the fur that would normally be digested after a kill. I carefully measured out meat, whole grains, and vegetables in the recommended proportions and started cooking my cats’ first healthy meal. My chicken and chicken liver stew bubbled on the stove while my cats slept. Into the food processor, whipped into a delightful mousse, and the food was ready for them.
I proudly presented my cats with their new, homemade food. They were not impressed. The books had prepared me to expect a battle as cats are creatures of habit. That was definitely an understatement! They sniffed the food and walked away, back to their bed. The next day I again brought out a portion of their new food. Still no interest from the felines. Same thing the next day. Jasper started to get impatient with me and padded over to the closet where the commercial pet food was kept. He mewed in front of the door and tried to open it with his paw. I could imagine what he was telling me, “in here mom! The food is in here!” I held tough.
After four days had passed, the cats were definitely thinner and finally hungry enough to tentatively try the new food. We haven’t looked back since. They are now firmly hooked on their whole foods diet and life has dramatically changed for them. No more feline couch potatoes! They are a healthy weight, sleek, bright eyed, and active. Very active! I have never seen such a flurry of feline activity! As I write, Lucy is begging me to play ball with her and Jasper is exploring the cords in the back of the computer. They merrily gallop from room to room, scale their cat tower in seconds, and pounce on each other with great enthusiasm. My furry friends are healthy and happy thanks to their new diet!
Lucy and Jasper with mom. Photo courtesy of Alexandra Holt.
Check out Jan Zeiger’s article, Natural Pet Market in Lake Mary
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