Friday, December 21, 2018

Mixing Up a Holiday Feast

When it comes to meal time, we're a kibble family. I hardly have time to cook for myself, much less for the pets, so we've spent a lot of time looking at different types of food and talking to our vet about the girls' needs and we've found food that we're all comfortable with. But back when I had foster dog Sal, he needed something a little extra while he worked on gaining back weight and strength and that process introduced me to dehydrated dog food. Ever since then, we've supplemented kibble with the occasional dehydrated dog food topper. 

This month, we got the opportunity from our friends at to try out a new brand of dehydrated dog food: I and Love and You's Stir & Boom dehydrated dog food in lamb. We've been a huge fan of I and Love and You's treats and regularly take them to agility trials and Soth ate their cat food for a while when we were trying to find something he'd eat consistently, so we were excited to try this product out.

Barley saw "homemade dog food' on the bag and got ready to get to work preparing a meal to share with her sister.

She couldn't believe that she didn't need the Kitchen Aid or her Pioneer Woman cookware to make a complete meal.

But the only thing you need to make this meal complete is a bowl, something to stir with, and water.

This Raw-Raw Lamb Boom Ba Dinner looks pretty typical of the other dehydrated foods we've tried. It looks like a bag of dirty with chunks of stuff in it. 

The back of the package has the recommended amounts based on your dog's size, but notes that ratio is 1:2 of dry food to water (or 1:1.5 if your dog likes things to be a bit thicker). You can also make extra and store it in the fridge for up to four days. Since we were just making it for a special "Mom Finished Grading Final Papers and We're Officially On Vacation" treat, we just went with the smallest serving size. 

You add water to the mixture, stir, and then wait for 15 minutes. As the water soaked in, I could make out the chunks of lamb and a few other ingredients like the carrots, but for the most part it looked like brown sludge (something that I've found with all dehydrated food--and something that only bothers me and not the dogs).

About halfway through the rehydrating process, I was surprised to see how soupy the mixture still was.

I was also surprised by how stinky this mixture was. Rye had been sleeping in the living room when Barley and I started mixing things up, but it didn't take her long to come check things out.

Fifteen minutes later, the mixture was still liquidy. All other dehydrated food that w'eve tried has been the consistency of grits by the time it's done rehydrating, so I was surprised to see how runny this was.

The girls did not care, though. They were ready to dive in regardless of the consistency. 

Often, I'll use dehydrated food to stuff Kongs, so the girls are occupied for a little while, but that was not a possibility with this mixture. I poured half into each dog's bowl and they were not amused that I made them wait to try it until I'd had a chance to take a picture.

Both dogs think this I and Love and You Stir & Boom food was good to the last drop. They licked their bowls clean and then swapped places to make sure the other one hadn't left anything behind in her bowl.

The ingredients in this are all things I'm happy to feed the dogs. In addition to the lamb, there's sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach, bananas, and a variety of vitamins and other tasty ingredients. The fat content is also only 11%, which is right about where I want food for Rye. Our 1.5-pound bag makes up to 10 pounds of food, so as a special treat, it will last us a long time! The consistency was really my only problem with it, so next time, we'll try the 1:1.5 ratio and see if that makes it thick enough that it could be a Kong filler. 

Stir & Boom from I and Love and You was a huge hit with both dogs, so we'll definitely be adding it to our dehydrated food rotation. With an easily resealable bag and the ease of mixing everything up, it's the perfect addition to Barley and Rye's diet.

Disclaimer: We were provided one bag of I and Love and You Stir & Boom food in exchange for our honest review as part of the #ChewyInfluencer program through


  1. We don't usually get dehydrated food because of the wait time for it to be ready. Mom wants a food she can just serve, especially for breakfast as we don't have time to spare for waiting. Sounds like it is real tasty, though.

    1. This one did take a lot longer to prepare than we were used to--the other foods we've used have been ready in 3 minutes, which is pretty much how long it takes to let the girls outside in the morning and then get Soth his breakfast, so it doesn't seem like we actually wait at all. The dogs thought this was delicious and worth the wait, though! I usually make a few days worth since it can be refrigerated and then we only have to wait once!

  2. I love the name of that! Luke doesn't like that wait time for re-hydrating food, so we like the convenience of the fresh food delivery. However, if the cost gets to be too much, we might go back to that. I like this brand so would definitely try it.
    Jan, Wag 'n Woof Pets

    1. The girls definitely prefer when I mix up a few days at a time so that they only have to wait every few days! The cost of this one was significantly more reasonable than some of the other brands we've tried and the ingredients were very similar, so it would definitely be worth trying!