Tag Archives: natural dog food

Gus Pups

Love at First Sight- Gus Kenworthy starts Fresh with the Sochi Pups

Our mission at Freshpet is to spread the power of fresh food to pets everywhere. We are wholly dedicated to improving the lives of pets and their parents, because they deserve it. Our Fresh Start program is part of that mission. We’re encouraging pet parents to incorporate more fresh, all natural food into their pets’ diets to see what the power of fresh can do.

 

Freshpet is making it easy for all pet parents to give their dogs and cats a Fresh Start. Simply visit freshpet.com to receive a coupon, downloadable scorecard to track your pet’s health improvements over time, and helpful tips from Dr. Katy Nelson, veterinary nutrition expert. And because Freshpet believes every pet deserves fresh, for each Fresh Start participant they will donate a fresh meal to the Humane Society International.

 

As part of the program,  we’ve partnered with Olympian Gus Kenworthy who was so touched after witnessing the multitude of stray dogs in Sochi, that he brought a mom and her pups home with him after his silver medal win. Now Gus is feeding the Sochi pups Freshpet food and treats and is using Whistle Activity Monitors to keep track of them as they grow up healthy and strong. For the next few weeks, Gus will be sharing updates of his and the pups’ journey.

 

Gus shares the story of how he came to be the proud Papa of three loveable pups , and why fresh food is so important:

 

Getting to compete at Sochi was one of the highlights of my life so far. I was so lucky to be amongst some of the best athletes in world. What I didn’t expect was to meet the puppies while I was there. I saw the pups with Mama right outside of the Olympic Village and right away knew I had to bring them back with me. I had read and heard so much about the Sochi strays, but once I actually met them it was a totally different story. It was puppy love at first sight I guess you could say. 

 

That day, I spoke to my buddy, photographer Robin Macdonald, who was in Sochi with me, and we both made a promise to take those pups home with us to Colorado where we’d give them the best possible lives. It was the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

 

It took a few weeks of back and forth with countless officials and government offices, but I finally had the pleasure of welcoming Mishka, Jake and Mama to Colorado. I can’t thank Robin enough for staying behind to make sure the pups made it over here safe and sound and the Humane Society International for helping the whole process along. It was more difficult than we thought it would be, but it was worth in the end when we finally got to see each other again in New York.

 

Mama and the pups are loving Colorado. Mama is spending most of her time in Telluride with my Mom and Mishka and Jake are growing faster than ever. I was fortunate that it did not take long at all to potty train the pups when we arrived in Colorado.

 

We’d already spoken to a few pet food companies, but what I really liked about Freshpet was their commitment to using all-natural and healthy ingredients for the pups. They got in touch with me asking if they could send over some food for the dogs. I can’t wait to see what kind of effect this has on the dogs. Like I said, the pups are already great at eating, so I’m excited to see what kind of appetite they have for their Freshpet food.

 

Learn how you can give your pets a Fresh Start by visiting our page here.

Petco Award

Freshpet Honored by Petco as Top Innovator in Pet Care

During our last Freshpet team meeting, we received a visit from Petco with a very special surprise: they had awarded us with the 2012 Business Development Partner of the Year award! Petco gives out this honor each year to recognize fellow leaders in pet care for going above and beyond the usual needs of consumers. When we created Freshpet just a handful of years ago, we recognized that people had started choosing fresh, natural foods for their families, and decided to make something just as wholesome and fresh for pet parents to feed their fur-kids. As our company grows, we’re proud to be recognized by Petco, a pet store that shares in our goal to better the lives of pets and pet parents.

 

Throughout the years, Petco has been an outstanding supporter of our fresh food. Early on, Petco recognized the importance and significant benefits of feeding dogs and cats fresh/refrigerated food. In fact, Petco was the first retailer to begin selling Freshpet nation-wide, making fresh food more readily available to more dogs and kitties across the country. Our partnership continues to grow as we both work towards a common mission and continue to push the pet care industry forward. We are very excited for what the future will bring to Freshpet and to our friends at Petco… but mostly to all pups and kitties across the country!

New Year’s Resolutions for Healthy Pets

Happy New Year! We hope you’re feeling refreshed and ready to take on the new year. Resolutions are a great way to start the year off, whether they are a list of things to accomplish, or just fun ideas to make 2013 your best year yet. We often think of resolutions not only for ourselves, but for our families as well. Here are our top resolutions for your healthy pets.

 

Make exercise with your pet a daily part of your routine

Not only is exercise beneficial to keeping your pets happy, active, and at their optimal body condition, exercising your pets can also provide the same benefits to you! Take a walk each day with your pooch, or spend some time playing with your kitty around the house. It will increase your bond while integrating physical activity into both of your lives. Play also keeps your pets’ mind sharp; even just five minutes per day spent tossing a ball or dangling a mouse can mentally stimulate them!

 

Schedule a check-up       

Just like humans, furkids need to visit the vet once per year; for older pets, the visits should be more frequent (about twice per year).  So while you’re scheduling your yearly tune-ups, don’t forget to make an appointment to take your pets to the vet as well. Dr. Katy Nelson, a veterinarian and Freshpet blog contributor, explains the importance of taking your pet for a check-up:

“By going for wellness appointments, you can hopefully catch changes in your pet’s health early on and prevent conditions from worsening or even reverse them completely. Your veterinarian will do a full physical examination (including oral and ocular evaluations, listen to the heart and lungs and assess weight, joints, changes in skin or coat, and much more) and make recommendations for improved or continued health based on his or her findings. Slight changes in weight, inflammation in the oral cavity or small lumps or bumps can all indicate more serious disease conditions and early intervention could be lifesaving.”

 

Volunteer

Many people resolve to give back to the community in various ways, and volunteering with shelter animals can be a very rewarding way to do so. Visit your local shelter to find volunteer opportunities. Walking the dogs, playing with the cats, and donating money or much needed items like blankets and bowls are all great ways to help a shelter. Even consider fostering a rescue or an expectant mother. This can be a fun way for you to introduce your children to volunteering while enjoying another furball at home. Keep up with how we’ll be giving back this year on our donations blog.

 

Set up play dates

Hosting play dates for your pooch will help socialize her and get her used to new faces and other animals and people. Plus, they’re a lot of fun for owners and pets alike! Visit the dog park, take a walk together, or invite your friends and their pets over for a great day indoors or outside.

 

Re-examine eating habits

The New Year is a great time to look at your pets’ eating routine and make healthy adjustments as needed. Resolve to feed fewer table scraps? Consider swapping in a fresh treat instead. Or try our fresh treats in place of shelf-stable treats, often containing many ingredients that are less than ideal for our pups and kitties. Look for ways to integrate fresher foods into your diet and that of your family members. Our fresh foods and treats are made with wholesome ingredients, gently cooked to maintain more nutrients and keep your pups and kitties happy and healthy.

 

Take more car rides

Getting your pets accustomed to car rides can have lasting benefits beyond just feeling the wind on their furry faces. Car rides are a great way to introduce your pets to new scenery, especially in the cold. And next time you have to take them to the vet, the car ride may not be as frightening.

 

Bonus: Dogs and Cats share their resolutions for 2013

Babble.com put together these adorable slide shows to celebrate the new year. What would your dog or cat’s resolution be? Visit us on Facebook or Twitter and tell us.

Ingredients

Optimal Diet for Weight Loss in Dogs, Part 2 of 2

Freshpet Vital High Protein IngredientsThis week’s blog post was written by Lisa P. Weeth, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine and Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Nutrition.

 

Not all calories are created equally. More recent veterinary research has challenged the more traditional low fat, high fiber approach to weight loss for dogs and cats. While absolute calorie reduction is essential, studies have shown that dogs and cats fed higher protein diets during weight loss maintain lean body mass (muscle mass) more than when fed higher fiber, more moderate protein diets.

 

During energy restriction for weight loss it is important to ensure all of the essential nutrients requirements are being met each day, and as such, Veterinary Nutritionists (veterinarians who have undergone specialized training in dog and cat nutrition and are certified by the American College of Veterinary Nutrition) recommend feeding a diet that has a minimum protein content of 30% of the calories. Freshpet diets that meet this criterion include:

 

 

More recent evidence in people and cats has also shown that individuals fed higher protein, lower carbohydrate diets will actual consume 5-10% more calories per day and still lose weight. This is known as the thermic effect of food, or the difference in the amount of energy required to burn different types of food. Put another way, it takes more energy (calories) to burn 100 calories worth of protein than it does to burn 100 calories worth of starch (simple carbohydrate).

 

Protein and fat also help promote satiety, or the feeling of fullness, after each meal. Research has shown that higher moisture foods (like all Freshpet recipes) may also help the animal feel full while actually consuming fewer calories.

 

Photo: Flickr (lindyi)

Optimal Diets for Weight Loss in Dogs, Part 1 of 2

This week’s blog was written by Lisa P. Weeth, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine and Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Nutrition.

 

The key to losing weight is simple, a dog needs to burn more calories each day than he/she consumes. For animals that are slightly overweight (less than 15% over their ideal body weight), restricting the amount of their current complete and balanced diet in addition to regular, moderate exercise will promote gradual weight loss, but for dogs that need to lose more than 15% of their body weight, what you feed is as important as how much you feed.

 

Photo: Flickr (lindyi)

Photo: Flickr (lindyi)

 

Before starting any weight loss plan, pet owners should first meet with their veterinarian. The dog should have a basic health screening, including a physical examination, screening blood work, and urinalysis. This will help determine how much weight the dog needs to lose and screen for any medical conditions that may be unnoticed.

 

Obesity in dogs is often the result of excess calories, but can also occur with certain medical conditions, such as hypothyroidism, which needs to be treated medically before starting a weight loss plan.

 

Additionally, obese dogs suffer from a similar ‘metabolic syndrome’ as people do, and it is important to ensure the dog is free from concurrent diseases, such as high cholesterol, high triglycerides, or kidney disease, before changing to a higher protein, higher fat diet.

 

Veterinary Nutritionists agree the optimal rate of weight loss for both dogs and cats is 1-2% of their body weight per week. This helps protect lean body (muscle) mass while preferentially burning fat mass.

 

Look for Optimal Diets for Weight Loss in Dogs, Part 2 of 2 on the Freshpet blog next week.

Tips for a Healthy & Shiny Coat

Feeding Freshpet promotes healthy & shiny coatYou can tell a lot about your pet’s health from the condition of their coat. A shiny, soft and thick coat generally means they are eating a well-balanced diet and in good health, but a dull, limp or brittle coat could be a sign they are not getting the proper nutrition they need or may be sick.

Here are some tips on how to keep your pet’s coat shiny and healthy:

Regularly groom your cat or dog with a brush specifically made for their hair type. If you’re not sure which brush to buy, ask your veterinarian for a recommendation. Not only does grooming create a special bond between you and your four-legged buddy, removing the dirt and debris from their hair promotes growth and brings out the natural oils in hair that make it shiny. Proper grooming will also help prevent shedding.

In addition to brushing, a healthy pet food rich in the following areas will help keep their coat in tip top condition:

  • Proteins: Poultry, meat, fish, and eggs
  • Iron: Red meat, turkey, liver, dark leafy greens
  • Vitamin A: Fish, eggs, and carrots
  • Vitamin B: Whole grains, meat, fish, and eggs
  • Vitamin D: Fish and fish liver oils
  • Vitamin E: Dark leafy greens

You don’t have to look far to find an all natural pet food recipe that will keep your dog or cat’s coat in great shape. Like all Freshpet foods, our Freshpet Select Roasted Meals for Dogs and Freshpet Select Roasted Meals for Cats are meat-based and made of high-quality proteins, like chicken and chicken liver, and vitamin-rich vegetables, like carrots and spinach, for a 100% complete and balanced diet.

So remember, to keep your pet’s coat radiant and huggable, get brushing and feed them fresh!