Red Wine, Clean Proteins, and Wagging Tails

Chef Point Cafe in Watauga, Texas hosted an amazing event a Thursday night in August.

It was a time filled with socializing, dog adoptions, wine tastings, and dog-gone goodness. I was lucky to have the chance to attend, mingle with some folks, and talk to a licensed dietitian on how clean proteins should be an integral part of a pet’s diet.

I found myself weaving through vivaciously wagging tails and cautiously stepping over neon-colored leashes. Aromas from freshly corked wine bottles perfumed the air, thick with the pantings of many well-trained dogs.

The entire event was geared toward every-and-all age group. And breed, for that matter.

The entire event was geared toward every age group. And breed, for that matter.

Wine And Wags—For A Good Cause

The evening was back-dropped against the dog-friendly patio at Chef Point Cafe where the waitstaff greeted both man and four-legged friend with an attentive ease. Dogs, large and small alike, sought refuge under their doting owner’s shaded tables. However, the evening was planned around the canines who had no home to call their own—and no patio table to cool themselves under.

Located on 314 East 4th Street in Justin, Texas, the Apollo Agency is an accredited non-profit geared toward rescuing dogs from all walks of life—especially ones who’ve suffered from neglect and abuse–from crowded North Texas shelters; the Apollo Agency is, as you’d expect, structured around a no-kill policy.

“When the dogs leave our rescue, the microchip they have embedded isn’t only registered to the new owner’s address, but will also show the shelter’s address when scanned. That way, should the dog be surrendered or the owner unable to take him or her back, we can step in,” said the shelter’s founder. “It gives us peace of mind knowing none of our dogs will end-up back on the streets.”

Blue is far from that—dreary. This bouncing ball of charisma is a pure-bred blue-pit who would add a splash of vibrant color to any household.

Blue is a pure-bred blue Pit Bull and a bouncing ball of charisma.

Three large black crates populated a well-shaded grassy patch in the yards’ right back corner. “Are these a few of the Apollo dogs up for adoption?,” I said pointing toward the charismatic dogs half-witted with certainty. “Yep, yep! Those are three of the dogs we brought today!”

All of these dogs pictured above are awaiting their “forever homes,” and the generous volunteer staff would be head-over-paws to accommodate any requests prospective owners may have. The dogs pictured above were available at the event, but may have already found their forever home. However, you can visit their adoption list to see if your next furry friend is waiting for you!

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A Short Discussion with a Licensed Dietitian

I had the opportunity to pick the brain of a good friend of mine—and his endearing German short-haired pointer (GSP), Gunther. After we managed find one another amongst the heavy foot traffic, the three of us made our way to an unoccupied table adjacent to the patio bar. The red wine and conversation followed suit.

Daniel Magoon is Dallas’s lead dietitian and local marketing coordinator at the ever-expanding Snap Kitchen; his milieu is in-between dynamic flavor profiles and nutritionally sound choices.

After a few dodgy attempts, we finally managed to take a half-decent photo. Never underestimate the power of a small stick in the hands of the right person.

After a few dodgy attempts, we finally managed to take a half-decent photo. Never underestimate the power of a small stick in the hands of the right person.

Matt Charnock: This idea of ‘keeping our proteins clean’ has been racking the dietary landscape for quite sometime. Would you mind defining what it means for a protein to be “clean”?

Daniel Magoon: For a protein to be considered ‘clean’, it has to be void of the things that have become common place in our mass produced foods. So growth hormones, antibiotics, and things of that nature won’t be found in those sources. And the same thing can be said for ‘organics.’ These sources aren’t produced, and can’t be produced, from Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) or come in contact with man-made fertilizers. And the list goes on and on.

Matt Charnock: Now, from my own personal knowledge bank, I know first-hand through research how fertilizer run-off can destroy an ecosystem. The animals, especially the amphibians, can’t cope with the introduced toxins and epidermal inflammation that follows. Could the same inflammatory effect be carried over to us…and dogs too? Has Gunther benefited from being fed a more ‘clean’ diet?

Daniel Magoon: Exactly, it all comes down to inflammation. For example, I noticed Gunther’s skin was becoming irritated when I had him on a certain brand of dog food. And his energy was also effected too. He seemed to have a harder time focusing.  But, as soon as we switched foods and embraced a cleaner diet, those symptoms were greatly improved. Not to mention that embracing a cleaner, organic diet keeps our environment cleaner for generations to come! Those pesky synthetics can’t make their way into our top soils and drinking water. It’s really a win-win situation, if you think a about it.

The Honest Kitchen is totted for not only supplying some of its products with clean proteins, but also forgoes any-and-all GMOs. It’s human grade, after all. And if we shouldn’t consume inflammatory pollutants, why should our four-legged friends—adopted or otherwise?

Meet the Author: Matt Charnock

Matt Charnock is a well-practiced, dynamic freelance writer, occupying numerous literary mediums. He’s been frequently published in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species’ amphibian journal, FrogLog, as well as having worked hand-in-hand with various nonprofits from around the world, promoting the connection between a healthier, more stable community and the sustainability of its endemic ecosystem. Matt also writes for various branding publications and news outlets, totted as being a “creative wordsmith with a passion for research and human connection.” Matt also regularly speaks at international conferences, discussing the merit of "storytelling" and how we can empathetical perceive the world—one narrative, one species at a time.

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