Zuri Food Chef Blog episode 1: “Why feed a fresh, natural, human grade diet to my dog?”

Hi everyone, thanks for visiting the Zuri Food blog and information site. The point of this blog is to…

  1. Create awareness of the health benefits from feeding your pup a food made entirely of human grade ingredients,
  2. Educate folks who are lost or overwhelmed when it comes time to choose a food for their dog, and
  3. Share the Zuri Food story along the way.

I’m going to start by sharing some of the things I learned in the first few weeks of making food for my dog Zuri. Visit www.zurifood.com to read our full story.

When Zuri first came home from the rescue agency as a 12-week-old puppy in the summer of 2013, I was committed to feeding her only dog food and avoiding human food at all costs. “I’m gonna do it right this time,” I told myself. I still remember the first time I filled her bowl up with Iams puppy food, thinking this was the best for my loving pup. She took one sniff at that bowl and chose to run across the yard instead. Now, I’d been around enough puppies, and enough rescue dogs, for that matter, to know that when a bowl of food is presented, the dog eats it. Especially one who is part black lab. So began my labeling her as “not food obsessed.” I stood by this character trait for nearly a year while I watched her scratch and bite herself to the point of bleeding, suffer from diarrhea 2-3 times weekly, and avoid eating her food until starvation was setting in.

After taking her to visit my family for the first time in Oregon, I was impressed with my sister’s dogs who would gobble up their kibble she had mixed with sausage bits, bone broth, and other “human” ingredients. When we got home, I decided that was enough and started researching how to make my dog’s food.

Here’s what I learned….

  1. The first ingredient should be meat…chicken, beef, turkey, fish, whatever, but meat first.
  2. There are many sources for carbohydrates…rice, sweet potato, couscous, etc.
  3. Dogs too, need veggies and fruits. The list of those that were OK was longer than I expected…carrots, spinach, kale, broccoli, squash, green beans, apples, bananas, and blueberries to name a few.

Seriously, armed with this short list I began to make Zuri’s food, at first mixing it with Blue Buffalo (yes, I bought into the “grain-free” trend for a while, forgive me) and eventually transitioning her to my homemade meals exclusively. The first thing I noticed was that Zuri ate her entire bowl of food in one session. No more waiting hours to nibble a bit more. Every. Morsel. GONE.

The second thing I noticed was that I found myself attempting to scrape liquid poo off blades of grass and sidewalks around the eastern part of Los Angeles FAR less frequently.

Win-win, right?

Well, let’s go 3-0…within weeks, those hot spots on her hindquarters were disappearing and black fur was growing where it should have been all along.

I was now THAT guy who “babied” his dog and had to admit to friends and folks he met at the dog park that he makes his dog’s food by hand. Embarrassing right? Actually, no. Some people responded with, “so do I, and have for years,” or “that’s so cool, what do you put into it?”

I was unaware of just how vast the premium dog food market had grown.

(to read more about this trend, here’s a link you may find insightful)…


To summarize “why” I feed a human grade ingredient diet to my dog, my 2 main factors are

  1. health, and
  2. enjoyment

Other dogs who have gone on the Zuri Food diet have shown…

  1. loss in weight
  2. muscle mass increase
  3. decrease body odor
  4. better breath
  5. improvement in mobility (especially those with arthritic conditions)

To read more about natural pet foods from members of the industry, check out this article…


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  • Nate, founder and head chef at Zuri Food

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