LOTS of people land on this blog looking for information about English Pointers. This blog chronicles the life of my two Pointers, Zeph and Zsa Zsa. Zeph is now 18 months old and Zsa Zsa is 14 months. Time has certainly flown; it was just yesterday that they were tiny puppies.

I’ve done a number of posts about the Pointer diet and what I feed Zeph and ZZ. You can catch up here, here, here and here. Basically, PLEEEEEASE don’t feed your Pointer processed dog food crap. The pet food industry is extremely good at convincing us that tinned dog food or kibble is a varied and satisfactory diet for our dogs. Reality is it’s full of preservatives, colourings and other nasties. Just like human food is.

So you need to make the effort to provide your Pointer with a varied, natural diet. One that is as close as possible to their 17th Century Spanish origins. This means they eat brown rice, wild game, fruits and vegetables. Basically, what was around in those days. I add to this by giving them organic yoghurt; pasta; goat’s milk; and couscous.

I will often toss into their food a crushed up Sanitarium Weetbix or some organic rolled oats; wheat germ; Brewer’s yeast (about a teaspoon, not too much as you don’t want to cause bloating); flaxseed oil; a raw egg; a bit of goat cheese. This gives them good variety and texture.

As much as possible, everything is natural. The raw meat they have is (or rather, was) one of our steers. They also love chicken necks. Yes, it’s okay to feed your Pointer chicken necks but NOT cooked bones. They also love raw venison bones.

I take the time to consider their menu. Every morning, they get a dollop of yoghurt on top of their food. I prefer to give them Clearwater’s Organic Yoghurt. And during the week, with their main meal at night, they will get a raw egg or some goat’s cheese. Pointers love brown rice and pasta. They have white rice too but they seem to prefer brown. And Zeph loves his vegetables, particularly carrots. Pointers will also eat fruit. An apple slice is very good for them (just make sure they don’t eat the apple seeds as they contain arsenic). If you want to toss in some kibble, then find an organic one such as Orijen. Both dogs are fed twice a day – breakfast and dinner – I don’t believe in this one meal a day business.

DO NOT feed your Pointer (or any dog for that matter) any of the following – onions, garlic, chives, mushrooms, chocolate, cocoa, raisins, grapes, salt, macadamia nuts, peanuts, walnuts, coffee, tobacco, nicotine, raw salmon or trout, nutmeg, sunflower seeds, corn cobs,  raw bread dough or any yeast, raw potato (cooked is okay), baby food, broccoli in large amounts, tomatoes, rhubarb, liver in large amounts, deli meats such as salami, prosciutto, pancetta, pepperoni, bacon (contain high levels of sodium and nitrates that can cause kidney problems), canned tuna (due to high levels of mercury).

A lot of this is plain old common sense but know what you can and can’t feed your dog. You don’t want to make a mistake that could cause kidney or digestive problems – or worse, death.

A varied and natural diet will result in a happy and active Pointer. And your Pointer will require a LOT of exercise. They are powerful athletic dogs, so make sure you provide them with plenty of opportunities to run and play. If you like jogging, take your Pointer with you. If you have paddocks, play the Phantom Rabbit game – take your Pointer to the gate and whisper Where is the Rabbit? Then open the gate and say Go – your Pointer will dash around looking for rabbits. Great fun and exercise.

Zeph and Zsa Zsa would like to show you their dinner so you get the idea. In their bowls they have: brown rice and organic pasta, mixed veges such as broccoli, beans and carrots, raw chicken necks, rib eye steak (from the steer), a teaspoon of Diatomaceous Earth for worming, a teaspoon of NZ flaxseed oil; a raw egg from one of our hens mixed through the food. They declare their meal to be yummo!

Zsa Zsa LOVES her food.

Zeph is the fussier eater. He takes time to inspect and sniff.

A balanced, natural diet equals a happy, healthy Pointer!