Monday, May 30, 2011

The Organic Drummies

During one of my meat shopping trips last month, I bought some Organic Turkey Drummies for Rossi gal. I got 2 packs, whereby each pack contains 2 drums, totalling to 4 drums.

This is how a turkey drummie looks like. It is pretty big.  

I spent some time on Friday evening to debone the drum. Though it was just a single drum, it took me a while to remove the meat from the bone and slice it up into bite-size pieces. It was mostly due to the big drum size and substantial amount of meat attached to the bone. 

The quantity of meat shown below weighs close to 290g, which is equivalent to about two days worth of food for Rossi gal.

I will only be giving her the turkey meat itself, cos the bone is too big and dense, not suitable for her to munch on. This is the reason why I have decided to debone the drum instead of giving it to her as a raw meaty bone (RMB).

For Rossi gal, I prefer to give her RMBs like lamb ribs and chicken drums, which have less dense and softer bones, easier for her to crunch through and munch. More ideal for her.

Below shows the turkey drummie (left) and Rossi gal's favorite Rosie chicken drummie (right). 

See the difference in size. Compared to the turkey drum, the chix drum looks so much smaller and less meaty. The chix drum (with its bone-in) weighs about 130g, whereas the turkey meat itself (without its bone) is already more than twice this weight.

In terms of TCM, turkey is classfied as a 'cold meat'. Cold meats can help to balance off the effects of Hot meats. Turkey would be a good addition to her diet for this purpose and also, as another protein source for variety.

If interested to know more about Hot and Cold meats, there is more info here.

Hot, Cold and Neutral Meats

Came across this article in one of my emails and would like to share it here.

Chinese Medicine: Using Food to Cure Disease
by Robert Mueller

There seems to be evidence that the traditional Chinese diet is a healthy one. The various studies that have been conducted by Oxford university, Cornell University and several others have recently found that eating habits of the Chinese have produced far less obesity than the average American diet, though they consume more calories daily (per pound of body weight). I contend that the reason is the excess consumption of carbohydrates relating to the amount of "junk food" that our culture tends to eat.

Unfortunately, we feed our pets the same way we feed ourselves. I am referring to the grain-based processed pet foods that the majority of our household pets consume.

Is it any wonder why 40% of our pets today are obese?

Traditional Chinese medicine has long recognized the important connection between food and good health. The Chinese have learned that certain foods have healing properties and can be used to replace traditional medical treatments. Specific foods will often be recommended as part of the treatment plan for certain disorders.

 Yang ---------------------------------- Yin
   Hot < Warm < Neutral < Cool < Cold

According to Chinese medicine, every food has a different "temperature". Some foods are considered "hot" while others are classified as "cold". It's all about balance - Yin and Yang. Balancing the body's yin and yang by consuming foods with the proper "temperature" can effectively treat the disease and correct the imbalance the body is suffering from.

Holistic veterinarians will often look to Chinese medicine when treating idiopathic diseases that have no definitive cause. When a condition in the body is caused by an inflammation (allergies), the vet will usually recommend feeding the animal a cooling food to counteract the condition, such as duck or turkey. Hot foods like chicken and lamb may aggravate an inflamed condition and will normally be removed from the pet's diet completely. Other ingredients that can also cool the body are bananas, cucumber, kelp, lettuce and oranges.

The following are examples of hot, cold and neutral proteins (1) :

HOT: Beef Kidney, Chicken, Chicken Egg Yolk, Ham, Lamb Kidney, Lamb Liver, Lobster, Mutton, Pheasant, Prawn, Shrimp, Venison

COLD: Alligator, Clam, Cod, Conch, Crab, Duck, Egg White, Oyster, Rabbit (raised), Scallop, Shark, Turkey, Turtle

NEUTRAL: Beef, Carp, Catfish, Goose, Mackerel, Pigeon, Pork, Quail, Salmon, Sardines, Tripe, Tuna, Wild Rabbit

The Chinese philosopy is to use frugality, simplicity and balance to effectively treat the condition - a lesson we all need to learn!

(1) List supplied by the Chi Institute website:

Robert Mueller, BSc, Pharm. is a registered pharmacist and has been formulating raw diets for more than thirty years. Recognized as one of the early pioneers in promoting raw foods to pets, Rob's history of developing and promoting raw meat diets has exposed him to dogs, cats, and zoo carnivores worldwide. He is also the author of the book Living Enzymes: The World's Best Kept Pet Food Secret. Rob and his wife love to travel with their dog, Ubi - a sheltie/beagle mix.

From: Barf World, "The Intelligent Pet" e-zine, December 8, 2010, Volume 1, Issue 8.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Her Favorite Corner

Rossi gal's Message to Daddy and Mummy

"I love my daddy and mummy very much. They are the most important people in my life.

I miss them when they are not at home. I want to spend all my time with them.

Mummy always give me yummy food. Daddy always play with me. I am the happiest gal in the world, cos I have them.

Mummy takes good care of my health and always worries about me. Daddy exercises me alot to keep me fit. What will I do without them?

Every night, I feel so safe and warm with them sleeping beside me. I feel their love for me. I want to be with them forever."

Rossi gal

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Words I

By an amazing one...

"I am invisible. I merge with my surroundings. I have vibrant colours. Green is just one of them. I like the idea of being undetectable. I only show myself when I feel like it. I go wherever I want, becoming what my surrounding details me to be. Aren't I amazing? I think I am!"

By an experienced one...

"My movements may be slow, but my mind is as sharp as a needle. I have keen senses. I'm intelligent. I'm slow and steady. I'm aware of whatever happens around me. I have lived a long time and witnessed many changes on this earth. I know many things."

By a friendly one...

"I'm proud of my beautiful spikes. They protect me from my enemies. They look impressive. No others have them and this makes me unique and different from them. Others are afraid of me because of my spikes, but I mean no harm unless provoked. I'm not as scary as I'm thought to be. Actually, I'm quite friendly!"

By a selfless one...

"I love my wife. I go where she goes. She is the light of my life. I'm worried about what will happen to her should anything happens to me. I'm not as strong as I used to be. How I wish I'm stronger. I can only protect her as long as I live."

Saturday, May 14, 2011

An Update

This is an update to my earlier blog post, The Thyroid Test (& A New Discovery)

A Short Recap
Some thinning was noted at the front sides of Rossi gal's body, so me and daddy brought her to see Dr Ly for a thyroid test to ensure it was not a thyroid-related issue. Her thyroid results were fine. Dr. Ly then suggested that it could be a hormonal-imbalance problem, resulting from her early spay. (She was spayed at exactly 6 months of age.) He prescribed a natural progesterone cream made from Mexican Wild Yam to see if it could help her and advised us to apply a tiny amount on her every alternate day.

I only used the progesterone cream twice and stopped after that, as Rossi gal was feeling kinda irritated on the areas where I applied the cream.

Besides, I didnt want to rely on the cream for Rossi gal, especially if this was for just didnt feel quite right to me somehow. 

I decided to look into her diet. I wanted to see if there was any way I could improve her thinning condition through her diet instead. 

Subsequently, when I was reading some stuff online, I happened to chance upon an owner sharing about her dog, who was also experiencing some hair thinning. It was quite similar to what Rossi gal was going through.Then someone suggested that this owner could try increasing her dog's red meat intake to see if it could help her dog, as red meats are high in nutritional value.

Red meat nutrition 

I decided to try this out. Besides, Rossi gal also does well on red meats. 

I proceeded to increase her red meat intake, making it the main part of her diet. Eventually, I also switched her meats over to organic/grassfed/game ones. I made slight adjustments to her supplement intake as well. 

Over weeks, I maintained her on this routine.

It was not immediate. It was over a span of time. I started to notice her thinning areas were "not as thin" as before. Gradually, her thinning areas were beginning to cover up with hair.

I'm not really sure if the increase in her red meat intake had a part in helping her thinning issue...I'm just happy that she was getting better with time.

Before: Both sides of Rossi gal's body were thinning, but I only took the pic of the thinning on her right side. This was taken on 3 Feb'11. (The thinning on the left side of her body was quite similar to her right side.)

The thinning on the right side of her body

After: Below are two pics that I have taken on 11 May'11. They show both sides of Rossi gal's body that used to have visible thinning. Now both her sides look fine. :) 

Right side of her Body

Left Side of her body

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Croc Meat

*Update as per 3 Aug 2011: This is a once-off. Crocodile meat will not used for making Rossi gal's treats anymore, neither will it be included in her main diet.

After casting the very first vote of my life at the polling station early this morning, I shopped abit and got 2 packs of Croc meat for Rossi gal.
Croc flank Meat, 250g per pack @ $9.90
She had eaten Croc meat during her HCF days. Now she is eating it raww. This is another meat I wanna give her raw. If she does fine on it, it will be included as another protein source in her diet.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Kangeroo Meat

Finally, I bought the kangaroo meat for Rossi gal. I had wanted to get it from one of the usual places I frequent, but they ran out of stock for it, so I went to another place to get it.  

Kangeroo Loin Fillet @ $74.50 per kg
It's not cheap, but seeing Rossi gal munching happily on the slices I gave her, its all worth it. 

Kangaroo is also a lean and nutritious game meat, definitely a protein source I will add to her diet.

Organic Turmeric Powder

Rossi gal has been taking turmeric powder for over a year. It is a herb that I will let her take for long term, mainly for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, as well its liver-protecting properties.

Turmeric's medicinal properties include, helping with blood cleansing, anti-coagulant, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-arthritic, antioxidant, anti-microbvial, antiseptic, stimulates bile production and strengthens liver function. Its common uses include, arthritis, blood clot inhibitor, candida, inflammation of the mucous membrance, eczema and gastritis. Infrequently, turmeric may cause gastric disturbances. Turmeric is contraindicated in cases of bile duct blockage or gallstones. (Source: "Herbs for Pets", Gregory L.Tilford & Mary L.Tilford) 
As with any herbs/supps, it is advisable to practise moderation with intake. I sprinkle a pinch of organic turmeric powder over a few of Rossi gal's meals weekly. She does fine on turmeric and likes its taste too.

(*If interested to try out any herbs/supps, it would be advisable to start in a small dosage and monitor for any reaction/s before proceeding to increase the dosage or deciding whether to continue the usage.)

To me, Turmeric is a good herb with medicinal and culinary uses. I give it to Rossi gal for its medicinal benefits, while I use it for my own cooking at times, for eg. curry, giving it a nice taste and aroma.

Turmeric powder is conveniently available at the spices' section of many supermarkets. But for Rossi gal, I get the organic one for her. Whenever possible, I want to give her organic sources.