Today we welcomed back to the show, Johnna Devereaux. Johnna is a certified clinical pet nutritionist, founder of Fetch RI and Director of Nutrition and Wellness for Bow Wow Labs. In an earlier life she was a short sale negotiator before meeting her dog, Diego, who changed her trajectory forever. Diego is a rescue dog who had numerous health issues as a pup. This set Johnna on a path to pursue her certification in pet nutrition and interest as an herbalist. There has been no looking back. Since then she opened a unique pet boutique in Rhode Island known as Fetch RI, joined the team at Bow Wow Labs and adopted Lola.
Johnna joined us previously on All My Children Wear Fur Coats to talk about Bully Sticks and the innovative Bully Buddy by Bow Wow Labs, a safety product that prevents dogs from choking on the remaining small piece of bully stick.
Fetch RI has established a rigorous standard for the products it offers to consumers. The vision of this organization is, “We want every pet owner to experience the joy of having a healthy pet.” They believe when you invest in your pet’s health and wellness, EVERYTHING CHANGES. Fetch RI has done the research so discerning pet owners don’t have to. In choosing products Fetch RI looks to the following: First, ingredients, ingredients, ingredients. All digestible products must be free of: artificial ingredients, chemical preservatives, wheat, corn, soy, propylene glycol and plastic (even food-grade). Second, quality is important and a superior level of quality is required for inclusion in the Fetch RI product line. All products are tested on Johnna’s own dogs, Diego and Lola. Third, where a product is made is important. All digestible products are made in the USA.
Johnna writes a blog that answers some of pet owner’s most pressing questions. For today’s show we discussed some of the things our dogs should never eat. This includes grapes, onions, chocolate, alcohol, avocado pits, raisins, sugar and the skin of any fruit that is not organic. Just because we like it and our dogs will eat it doesn’t mean it is good for them. Grapes can cause organ failure in some dogs and onions can cause a break down in red blood cells, leading to anemia. These are just a few examples.
We were encouraged to offer our dogs the opportunity for long terms chews – anything over ten minutes – because it meets a dog’s chewing needs, promotes oral health and engages the jaw muscles. However, it is important to choose the right products, including the right size product. Dogs should never be left alone while with a chew product because it can result in choking or an intestinal blockage. For long term chews, consider the Bully Stick with companion Bully Buddy, split elk antlers or raw meaty bones (non-weight bearing).
A hot topic right now is one related to transitioning back to work from work-at-home. Our dogs love structure, routine and are creatures of habit. Now that many of us have been working at home, our dogs have adjusted to this new normal and they love having us around. As we go back to work, our dogs need to be eased into the transition or we could experience separation anxiety or isolation distress. Johnna recommends practicing the transition two or more weeks ahead of time. This means going through the routine of preparing to leave the home; packing up your things, getting your keys and then leaving the home. If the dog is going to be alone, then everyone needs to leave and participate in this exercise. If your dog is used to a crate but it’s been put away during your time at home, she recommends getting the crate out, leaving the door open, feeding your dog inside and start re-training your dog to spending time in their crate. If your dog is fearful or becomes too anxious, you may want to consider positive based training support. Many dog trainers are offering virtual training sessions. In addition, you could consider calming treats or full spectrum cbd products.
Most importantly, stay safe, keep sanitizing, be happy and enjoy your pets!