Vacation Menu

This is the first time that I have taken Eti on vacation or away from home for a length of time greater than a weekend so I've had to face the challenge of what to feed him while away from our regular resources. Last year when I had come to Provincetown I noted that they sold Evo kibble at the pet food store which is one reason I have over the last year fed him a random occasional meal of Evo kibble. I didn't like how he seemed exceptionally thirsty on it but he was fine with it otherwise. The day we got here, I went straight to the store to get some along with some canned and they didn't have any-sold out, next delivery in a week. I came away with one can of Evo.

I was only going to feed him some meals of kibble and canned and the rest from the grocery store anyway so it was only a minor setback. Onward to to the supermarket where I got a whole chicken which included the liver/heart, eggs, sardines, ground beef, marrowbones, garlic and some pork. Next to the kitchen store where I got a pair of poultry shears and a pair of tongs (to hold on to the pieces and prevent him swallowing too big of a piece). Three grocery stores later- at the health food one - I finally managed to find a small tub of live yogurt- on the second try- the first one was sweetened although it didn't actually say that it was. What the original pet food store did have was some good treats- dried liver and buffalo jerky.

One more trip to the thrift store where I got a large Pyrex baking dish for a feeding platter and we're in business. First the chicken got cut into portions- I brought my little kitchen scale so was able to measure out the portions. I removed the wings thighs and drumsticks. The breast and back were cut in strips across so that the strips included both the the bonier backs and the meatier breasts. Everything got put into freezer bags and into the freezer. Next I ground up some eggshell with the help of a seashell and the back of a spoon as my makeshift mortar and pestle. Whenever I fed lean meat without bone I would add ground eggshell for calcium -one half teaspoon for every pound of lean meat. Every meal also got a halfish teaspoon of live yogurt and every other meal got a quarter teaspoon of fresh ground garlic. If only I had remembered to bring some fish oil capsules and things would have been near perfect.

A week or so later the results are in. I was expecting perhaps slightly softer poops because of the higher amount of lean meat- although I was adding ground eggshell for calcium I thought the lower amount of bone would mean less " fibre ". Instead we had fairly firm poop and very very little of it . At first I was a little concerned, then I realized that he was simply absorbing more and I had actually increased the daily amount a tad because he was getting so much more exercise than usual. You may have noticed that there is no mention of vegetables- I have increasingly reduced his vegetable intake to nothing and it has had no discernible effect. I do however supplement with marine greens and fruit for snacks. I decided to eliminate fruit these two weeks just to make sure that his digestive system had the sole job of digesting meat and bone as he didn't normally consume this amount of whole pieces. I've generally avoided feeding wings and thighs because I haven't been completely comfortable about the denser bones but he's been dealing with them well- I know now to include them more in the future. The vacation menu prepared by my temporary kitchen equipment was a success, I learnt a couple more things and Eti showed his usual appreciation by licking his platter clean.

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