Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Sojos ~ A Dog Food Review!

This is the face of a dog waiting for her Sojos dinner:

Charlie and I have been experimenting with different foods lately to provide more variety to her diet. I've been curious to try Sojos for quite a while and was really happy with how easy it was to prepare and how very much Charlie LOVES it!

I could tell by the way she was monitoring the rehydration process that she was very interested in this food.

Sojos is a freeze-dried raw food for dogs. I know... raw. I was a little skeptical about this, but the more I learned about a dog's digestive system the more comfortable I was with giving her a raw dog food. I've even begun to give her a raw egg once a week!

So, first a little information about a dog's digestive system: 1) Dogs have a very short digestive tract which means they can digest food quickly and easily. 2) Dogs have acidic gastric pH which helps break down protein and kills bacteria. These two facts combined mean that a dog can digest pretty much anything in a quick and efficient manner. (Keep in mind, though, that a dog's health and age should be taken into consideration with diet changes and I recommend you consult a veterinarian or pet food specialist with concerns or questions.)

Since a dog's system was basically made for eating a raw diet, it is probably the healthiest choice for them. If you think about it, "kibble" was introduced as a cheap and convenient way to feed our pets; their ancestral diet was based on scavenging or hunting other animals. And there have been many studies showing that feeding a dog the same dry food diet with the same protein source can cause allergies and sensitivities to certain ingredients.

This is why Charlie is now on a "grain free" diet with multiple protein sources. I want her to be the healthiest she can possibly be and live a long and happy life.

So, back to Sojos. This is not Charlie's ONLY food source, but rather a fun way to change it up once in a while and give her something to salivate over. I still utilize dry food (high protein, grain free) with her treat dispensing toys, but a few times a week she gets some other wet food, including Sojos.

A 2 lb. bag of "dry" Sojos supposedly makes about 10 lbs. of fully rehydrated food. The directions instruct combining one cup of dry mix to 1-1/2 cups of water and letting it rehydrate for at least 15 minutes, but preferably overnight.

I followed the instructions for the first batch, which resulted in a "soupy" quality but I was looking for it to be more like an "oatmeal" consistency. Charlie liked it anyway!

Dry mix with water after 1 minute of stirring.

Rehydrated consistency after 15 minutes.
The second batch, I only used one cup of water (a 1:1 ratio) which resulted in the mushier consistency that I was looking for. Of course, Charlie was equally thrilled with these results!

I mix up a batch at night before bed and put it in a tupperware in the fridge overnight. By morning, it's ready to go! I split it between her next 3 meals and use it up within a couple days. Then we take a couple days off and start over again.

I really like that you can see the actual bits of food and they are easily recognizable - no mystery meats or vegetables here. Plus, it actually smells good... like beef stew. It definitely gets Charlie's attention and she'll do anything to get a serving.

Bon Appetit!