Friday, March 25, 2016

Fit Friday: Hydration

An essential part of any dog sport or training is making sure that your dog stays well hydrated. Some people are lucky, and have dogs who will readily drink water when offered. Others are not so lucky. Koira, for example, won't drink water when traveling until she is really thirsty, and even then, she doesn't drink much. Obviously this isn't super healthy for her.

Over the years, I've developed a bit of a system to help get Koira to drink. First, at flyball practice, I have trained a cue for drinking water, and reward her with her tug toy when she drinks. Unfortunately she often does fake little drinks in hopes for her toy. But it is better than nothing, and unless it is a really hot day, it isn't the end of the world if she waits until we get home before she really drinks.

At tournaments, or other full day or full weekend dog events, it is a bigger deal. She needs to stay well hydrated to run well and stay healthy, whether she wants to drink water or not. So I put add ins into her water to entice her into drinking. At need, I will use standard treats or kibble, but what works best is dehydrated raw food added to the water. I've used all kinds- if it is dehydrated raw and on the market, chances are I've used some of it for her at some point. I add just a little bit of the raw to the water, just enough to give it an enticing flavor and scent. I figure the little boost of protein during a full active day can't hurt anything either. The powdered ones work best, the ones that will actually mix into the water instead of floating on top or sinking into the bottom.


Honest Kitchen has started making a powdered bone broth that I've been debating trying. Luckily for me, offered me the chance to review it this month.

The Honest Kitchen Bone Broth has just four ingredients- beef bone broth, parsley, pumpkin, and turmeric extract. The powder smells pretty strongly of turmeric when you open it- I didn't think it smelled meaty at all. The instructions say to mix a tablespoon of the powder with a cup of hot water, mix, and then let sit until cool enough to drink.

Honest Kitchen Bone Broth-5036
Tablespoon of bone broth powder

Well, that was kind of a bummer for me, actually. Because what I would use this most for is to get Koira to drink water at tournaments and trials and events. And I won't have access to warm/boiling water at most of those, and won't want to wait around for it to cool off even if I do, because generally I want her to be drinking the water now, not ten minutes from now. That said, I haven't tried using cold water and just shaking, so it might work. I generally do the dehydrated raw by putting the raw in the bottom of the bowl, then pouring the water over the top out of my water bottle. So I will have to try that with this bone broth and see how it works.

Plus side, both Koira and Ptera seemed to really like this. We did test it at home, so I can't say for sure that it would entice Koira to drink while away from home, but she seemed to really like it, so I think it probably would work.

Honest Kitchen Bone Broth-5042
Bone broth powder mixed with hot water

I did notice that unfortunately, the turmeric appears to have stained the inside of my silicone bowl with just the one use. That isn't a big deal when talking about a drink for a dog, but it is good to note so that you don't spill this stuff on yourself or use a nice bottle or bowl to put it in.

Overall, I think the dogs enjoyed the bone broth. I don't know that I would give it every day unless I fed out of a bowl and just mixed it in with the kibble/dehydrated raw. But most of the time my dogs are eating out of food puzzles, which makes it not practical to add liquid or a powder to their food.

* provided me with this product free of charge in exchange for my honest review. All opinions here are entirely my own, and I was not compensated in any other way.

What do you do to make sure your dogs stay hydrated while traveling, competing, and training?

Bonus- here is a video of Ptera passing with one of the Apupalyptic dogs in training Arlo. Arlo is solid as a rock, but I think Ptera is doing pretty good too!


  1. Bailie and I love water, so no issues with drinking here. Turmeric will have to go on our food instead.

  2. Earl and Ethel enjoy a nice fresh drink of water, but this looks extra yummy!

  3. Great article! I found this information very informative, I'll have to try this product out for my pups. Thanks for the post!

  4. A while ago you posted about how you travel to keep Koira safe what have done with the new puppy.

  5. Because of summer heat, we need the help of Amino Hydrate for us to stay hydrated.