A Squared: Healthy Puppy Parenting with Purina® Pro Plan®

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Healthy Puppy Parenting with Purina® Pro Plan®

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #ProPlanPet #CollectiveBias

It's hard to believe that Alex and I became dog owners only 6 months ago because it feels like Clery has been in our lives forever. And while I never thought we would become 'those' pet parents that treat their dog like their child, we might be them now-- complete with working parent guilt, unnecessary (and expensive) trips to the pet ER, dog walkers, dog snuggles on the couch (which I swore I'd never allow!), and an Instagram account dedicated 100% to my puppy (@CleryColvin). I also never thought I would put so much painstaking thought into what my dog eats, but he's such a big part of our lives that his nutrition has become really important to us. And it is important that he eats the way that Alex and I do: foods made from real ingredients and that may support health, growth and physical/mental performance, but that also taste good and don't break the bank. And a huge part of his healthy puppy diet is Purina® Pro Plan®.

So when it came time for us to select food for our own puppy, Alex and I headed to our neighborhood PetSmart store to pick out the best dry food for Clery's needs. And even though our city PetSmart is smaller than the norm, they carry dozens of brands and varieties which were stacked high in the dog food aisles in the back of the store. A super helpful store associate must have recognized the confusion on Alex's and my faces as new puppy parents wandering through the dog food aisle and we asked her tons of questions-- beginning with Purina® Pro Plan®. Although Purina® Pro Plan® was new to me, I recognized the parent brand name because growing up, my family pets always ate Purina® foods. The PetSmart associate gladly gave us all the information we needed to know: real meat is the #1 ingredient in Purina® Pro Plan®, the food includes no artificial colors or flavors, they offer an extensive line of products addressing the different needs of different dogs, and it is one of the more reasonably priced high quality dog foods you'll find out there today.

Shopping the dog food aisle with my boys at PetSmart Wrigleyville

Purina® Pro Plan®'s tagline is "nutrition that performs" and this food certainly lives up to the hype. They were the first dry dog food brand to use and be founded on the idea of real meat as the #1 ingredient, helping to promote total body health. And every high quality ingredient they use is chosen for a specific purpose. I love that they offer so many different varieties like Purina® Pro Plan® Focus, for instance, which is specially formulated to help immune and brain development in large breed puppies-- like my Clery. There's even a specially formulated Chicken & Rice variety for puppy parents who prefer feeding their dogs fewer grains or for parents like us who have an active puppy with a huge appetite!

And beyond that, there are options for large dogs, small ones, senior dogs, and those on grain free and special diets, in addition to wet foods, supplements, and treats too. So, even when Clery is an adult or a very old dog, Purina® Pro Plan® will have a nutritionally appropriate option for him.

And you don't have to take my word for it-- Clery LOVES feeding time! He even does a little twirly dance when we tell him it's "time to eat." A bowl full of Purina® Pro Plan® never gets old for him, just like watching the 'dinner dance' never gets old for us!

Purina® Pro Plan® dry food is a great basis for Clery's healthy and budget friendly everyday diet. And in addition to his regular meals, I try to keep his treat regimen natural and inexpensive too. When he's crated while we are out, we try to leave him with a treat trapping toy to pass the time. I fill it with frozen pumpkin puree or with a frozen banana slice. They're all natural healthy options that Clery can't seem to eat fast enough!

And you know I love to cook, so it seemed only natural to try my hand at cooking-- or in this case, baking-- for my puppy! I recently made homemade treats for Clery, which are healthier than your run of the mill boxed bones, but certainly more cost effective than any organic or all natural prepared treats you'll find in specialty stores. So, I got creative and made my own recipe for homemade treats and he is pretty much obsessed with them. Scroll on down to the bottom of this post for the recipe!

So excited to be shopping at PetSmart that he made this goofy face!

If you're considering a nutritional change in your dog's diet, I would highly recommend you check out Purina® Pro Plan® (find them on Facebook and Twitter too). In fact, Purina® is making it super easy (and budget friendly) for you to do that now with a special rebate offer for a free bag of Purina® Pro Plan® dog food! Visit the Purina® Pro Plan® MyPLAN website to get your dog's MyPLAN recommendation and a rebate offer for a free bag of Purina® Pro Plan® Dry Dog Food (4-6lbs, up to $18.99.) Good only in U.S.A. A.P.O's, F.P.O's. Void where taxed, prohibited, restricted. Allow 6-8 weeks for shipment. LIMIT ONE REQUEST PER INDIVIDUAL, ADDRESS, or EMAIL ADDRESS. Offer expires 04/30/2015. See full terms.

Homemade Peanut Butter Banana Dog Treats


  • 2 1/4 cups oats, divided
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1/3 cup peanut butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Pour 1 1/2 cups of oats into a blender and pulse until the oats are finely ground. Add ground oats, remaining whole oats, flour, egg, bananas, and peanut butter to a large bowl. Stir well to combine.

At this point, you can either drop the dough by the tablespoonful on an ungreased cookie sheet or roll out on a floured surface (as I did). Roll the dough out, cut with the a small cookie cutter, and transfer cut shapes to an ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake for 16-18 minutes until firm. Remove from oven, allow treats to cool, and transfer to airtight container.

These are just a few of the things that we do to keep Clery healthy and strong. What are your favorite healthy dog tips? This new dog mom is always looking for suggestions!

A Squared


  1. Clery is gorgeous! I've always been a pet parent, so it's hard NOT to be one, even with other people's pets. We live in a small space, so our pets are small- I can imagine having a full size dog like Clery and running to the pet ER often with fears. Active purebred dogs can be quite expensive, but the love of any animal is so worth it! #client

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  4. Nourishment is one of the essential parts of a healthy dog’s life. That is why it is really important to find the best dog food you can get. However, it is worth noting that in accordance to a good dog food, you should also make sure that your fur baby has consistent appetite. You can have the best dog food in the world, but without eating it is pretty useless. I found an article discussing appetite loss in puppies which I think should be known by more pet parents: http://dogsaholic.com/puppies/puppy-not-eating.html

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