Mangoes and Peaches

I gently squeeze the peaches in the bowl on the counter, looking for that perfect ripeness. One of them suits my fancy. I rinse it in the sink, the water droplets sticking to the peach fuzz before they tumble down.

Molly trots over. Any activity that takes place in the kitchen requires her immediate supervision. You never know. I may be frying chicken or baking meatloaf.

I smile and let her sniff the peach, knowing she won’t like it. To my surprise, instead of a disappointed, “Oh. Fruit,” she gives me her best, “Please, please, please, won’t you share some with me?”

I’m surprised. I ignore her and bite into my peach, then look back over my shoulder.

“Puh-leeeease?”

I toss her a bite. She catches it mid-air and chomps it down. “Is that all I get?”

I toss her another bite, waiting for her to realize her mistake and spit it out. Instead, I make a new discovery: In addition to raw radishes, steamed kale stems, and the occasional blueberry, my dog likes peaches. But the jury’s still out on mangoes. I think she finds the texture funny.

I’m always looking for something new to throw into the food dish or serve as a treat. Trying new foods is all a part of our culinary adventure—and not just new meats, but new veggies too, and yes, even a little fruit. The effort is small, but the reasons are important:

  • If a pet eats the same thing every day, she could develop an allergy
  • As with human diets, variety is the best way to provide all the nutrients a pet’s body needs
  • It’s fun! Molly’s eyes light up when she gets something new, and she eats it with gusto

In large part, my dedication to variety is married to my rebellion against the conventional system–the same brand and flavor of kibble or canned food every day of a pet’s life. I wouldn’t like to eat that way. In fact, if I don’t pull out the cook book often enough or stroll down a different aisle of the grocery store now and again, my body gets lethargic and I don’t feel satisfied at meal times.

I see the same thing with Molly–particularly still being hungry after meals–if she hasn’t had something new in a while. Maybe it’s as simple as baking her dinner instead of frying it. Maybe it means going wild and buying that dehydrated lamb lung treat.

And maybe it means listening to your dog when she says she wants to try some of your peach.

 

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