Updated: Mar 30
You’ll excuse me if I borrow and modify a line from the 1998 Coen brothers movie The Big Lebowski: You know, Dude, I myself dabbled in vegetarianism once. It was many years ago and at the time all I did was cut out meat and basically replace it with carbs. Great in the short term, not so much long term, and I was back to eating meat within months.
Fast-forward a few years and, after some health issues, I started dabbling with the idea of cutting out meat again. It was difficult to digest and I found a diet of vegetables and salad to be much easier on my gut. But you can’t just live on greens. So I persevered – you need protein after all. The turning point was once we got Jackson and I put him on a raw food diet. I simply couldn’t stomach dealing with the contents. At that stage, he also ate only half of the packet, leaving me with the issue of having to store the other half for later. I wasn’t comfortable putting it in the fridge with our food, so I double bagged it. But I found it so wasteful of single-use plastic. And to be brutally honest, I wasn’t going to wash out the remains to recycle the packet.
It was one morning early, after giving Jackson his breakfast, that I decided it was time to change both of our diets. No more meat for me and no more raw food for him. This time I did it right, though. I started eating protein-rich foods and other meat substitutes. By then, Jeanne and I had also started experimenting with Slobber, so Jackson got home-cooked meals. And we both reaped the benefits of our new lifestyles.
There are pros and cons to putting your dog on a plant-based diet, but we ultimately decided that the pros outweighed the cons
As the launch of the online shop drew closer, we had to decide what we were going to add to our repertoire. I had heard of something called TVP, or textured vegetable protein, which is fat- free 100% protein made from soy flour. There is a wealth of info on the net regarding the pros and cons of putting your dog on a plant-based diet, but we ultimately decided that the pros outweighed the cons, and, coupled with the grains we use (brown rice, lentils, split peas, and barley) and the veggies, the end product would still be a balanced, nutritional meal for dog owners who prefer to not feed their dogs meat. (Just ask our meat supplier, whose two bull-mastiffs, who weigh in at a whopping 80kg each, are both vegetarians.) Of course, this option isn’t for everyone. You know your dog and you know what he or she likes. But just like humans like to have options, we believe dogs should also be given that courtesy.
The Slobber team