I grew up with dogs and cats in Nagoya, Japan. They were our family, and they ate almost the same food we did. For the dogs: white rice, miso soup, leftover vegetables, a small amount of eggs, and meat. For the cats: white rice, miso soup, and dried bonito flakes or leftover fish. Their food was very basic, but it always came from our kitchen, made of the same unprocessed, quality ingredients we ate. Our companion animals were never overweight or sick, and they lived typical lifespans. I remember when my mom brought commercial dog food home in the late ‘60s. It was so smelly; I did not want to open the package.
After I moved to the US and adopted my first dog, Sakura, in 1983, I was told to give her dry dog food. It was easy to give her, but she had all kinds of problems, such as a bad smell and skin irritation. As she got older, the problems got more serious. I did not know what to do, so I just gave her the food and medications the vet recommended.
After being diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 1993, I learned how to eat healthy food through a macrobiotic diet. I took a holistic approach to healing, including herbal and homeopathic medicine. This changed my life, and I thought I could do the same for Sakura’s arthritis and skin problems. I started cooking for her and stopped giving her conventional medication. I also took natural nutrition classes for pets and learned so much. Sakura started to show improvements after three months, and after six months, she was able to go hiking with us again. Her skin healed, and she was like a puppy again.
I could not have a human baby in this lifetime, so my dogs and cats became my children. I care about them so much and have been cooking for them for more than 20 years now. I hope you’ll join me in preparing homemade food for your beloved dogs and cats and use a natural, holistic medicinal approach first for their health conditions.