Erica Cooper started following the Daintree Duck Tollers Facebook page and began to learn more about a holistic way to care for her shelter dog, a Duck Toller.
When my husband and I got our new puppy in 2007 she was only 3 months old, had been beaten and abused and had her ears clipped. The closest toller breeder to us was in Alabama, and they were not a lot of help.
We wanted to make sure we did everything "by the book". We took her to the vet and got every and all shots the vet recommended. We fed her whatever kibble the vet recommended. As time went on, our new little pup seemed to have a rash on her belly at times and horribly dry skin. Her vet suggested different sensitive stomach pet foods, and we kept changing it up over and over trying to find something.
In learning more about Tollers, I stumbled upon Trisha's Daintree Duck Tollers site. It was a wealth of knowledge! Not only did I get to find out more about my own dog, but I got to find out more about the breed in general. That is when I first found out about raw diets and feeding. It seemed like a lot of work and extra money, but I wanted to make sure I did everything I could to see if my own dog's health would improve. I started out slowly, a few times a week I would raw feed. Then more and more. I noticed my dog's coat got more shiny. Her rash was disappearing. Her skin was no longer dry and she seemed to be much more active. I discussed with my vet what I was doing, but he wouldn't say much about it. He was a firm supporter of his own pet food brand that was sold on site. I knew what I was doing was helping her though, so I continued. And thankfully, through the Daintree facebook, I get new ideas for food to feed her!
Also, the more I learned about vaccines, the more I wished I would have waited and did a lot of things differently. Again, her original vet was a huge supporter of all vaccines, so I was not going to get any help from him. Whenever I would bring up questions, everything was masked behind a reason of "everyone else does it, so we will, too" attitude. I had to do my own research, with great help from the Daintree site and Facebook, to learn about making my own decisions for my dog. I know whenever the time comes for us to get another Toller, not only would I be honored to have a Daintree dog, but I feel like I have the peace of mind knowing that I don't have to follow the so called "norm" for the health and well-being of my pet.
Daintree has helped me, along with the many other followers, to learn that we have to be in charge of what is right for our pets. I have a become a strong advocate for the health of my dog. I stand up to big pharma and typical vet care. Just because everyone does it, doesn't mean you shouldn't question why! I would strongly urge any and all pet owners to not just say Yes, but ask Why! How is this benefiting my animal? Is there a better way? And above all else, seek out others in this community for help and advice! Together, we can help extend the life and livelihood of our pets.
Abby is her name. She is 7 now and a completely different dog. Still tiny little ears but an amazing companion.