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Microbiome, Gut Health, and Fresh Food: How to Keep your Dog Healthy

Why Brooks loves Ollie.

By Jesus MontillaPublished about a month ago Updated about a month ago 4 min read

Supported byOllie


Meet Our Dog

We adopted our dog, Brooks, in May of 2022. He has made our lives exponentially more joyful in so many ways! He is a standard goldendoodle, and he is our first ever large breed dog. He just turned two and loves snuggling and playing fetch or catch.

Since we got him, we have really focused on feeding him the highest quality foods we could find. We also put a huge emphasis on feeding him a diverse diet to minimize the chances of him developing allergies and food preferences, or “pickiness”. Our efforts seemed to work because Brooks really will eat anything; he loves snacking on carrots and apples.

We are big believers that our pup should be eating the same quality food as us, but of course knew he couldn’t eat entirely the same food as us. We were at the point where it was time to introduce a new dog food to him. We started with Ollie.

He loves Ollie!

Meal Diversity with Ollie

Since 2016, Ollie has been reinventing the way we keep our dogs healthy and happy for longer. Brooks is OBSESSED with his Ollie food, from the day it first came in the mail, he could smell it through the box and packed ice. You know something is fresh when your dog can smell it before it’s even made it into the house.

We have tried countless different dog foods in the short time we’ve had him - and he has never had such an immediate positive reaction to any food, until Ollie. Our ordering experience was easy and seamless, honestly even easier than shopping for ourselves. The online Ollie team helps you figure out exactly what your pup needs with just a few questions. Our box arrived in just a couple days, complete with dry ice and sustainable packaging. The food was still completely frozen solid upon arrival - really contributing to our great first impression of the brand.

When introducing Ollie, we continued reinforcing a diversity of foods in his diet by picking four unique recipes: chicken, lamb, beef, and pork. Brooks’ personal favorites were definitely the lamb and chicken. We decided to go for the full fresh meals, as they are the “least processed” option, and we are so glad we did, because it was a hit with him. It was such a hit that we had to use our slow feeder to reduce his feeding times and to minimize bloat with how excited he would get!


If we watch what we put in our bodies, why not do the same for our dogs? If you can’t tell, I’m really big on the health and nutritional aspect of what I feed Brooks. Part of the reason we have been loving Ollie is that it’s human grade- you can physically visualize all the different ingredients in the food, making it easier to trust the quality. As in, you can actually see the carrots in the Chicken dish with carrots. Should be obvious, but you never know with pet food. We are big believers that our dog should eat high quality “human food”; by that we mean human-like food, in the sense that they should be eating just as high quality as us. Ollie definitely provides that.

Health Benefits

There are endless ways of feeding our dogs, you always hear the “back in my day” stories of feeding dogs whatever was leftover for the day. Which initially might sound neglectful, but given that we’ve seen the number of cancer cases in dogs rise exponentially with every decade, I sometimes wonder if it’s not a coincidence.

One of the biggest buzz words in the media today, for both dogs and people, is “gut health”. This isn’t due to some trend or another “fad diet” thing. Digestive health is a growing topic in the pet wellness world for good reason, the increasing amounts of studies on our pet’s gut health and microbiome is a great indicator to overall wellness and can give us a glimpse into future possible health outcomes. This is something I think about a lot for Brooks.

Fortunately, research around pet gut health is pointing us in the right direction. While cancer is the leading cause of death in dogs by 47%, there are nearly 100 different types of animal cancers known today, and veterinarian research suggests that many of those have linked origins to the digestive tract.

Pet food subscriptions are obviously better than kibble, but they are not all created equal. It’s clear to me that Ollie has the nutrients needed to support our dogs’ gut, including a healthy microbiome.

One key thing Ollie does that improves gut health is they slow cook their food, which actually preserves the nutrients that improve the gut health in the first place. Unlike other food brands that flash bake at high temperatures while killing off all nutrients, Ollie cooks in small batches at low temperatures. On top of that, the ingredients are carefully sourced and hand-chosen to meet our pets’ microbiome needs.

And so while I don’t have a microscope into Brooks’ gut, I can definitely say that something good is happening in there.

I love the dish and scoop that comes with Ollie. So easy to clean.

Let’s Talk About Poop

You can ask around to anyone you know who feeds raw or “fresh” dog food, the one thing you will hear in common is the difference in poop. Ever since switching to Ollie, Brooks’ stools are significantly smaller, more solid, and less frequent. You’ve heard the saying “Big dog, bigger poop”, and it’s true. Having a bigger dog, you definitely do not take into account the size of their not-so-little presents. Prior to Ollie, Brooks would poop at least twice a day, and his stools were always very big and odorous. With Ollie, his stools more closely resemble that of a small-medium sized dog and are more solid without the dreaded odor.

Externally, we have seen countless other positive changes in Brooks since starting on Ollie. He has had less overall scratching in his skin, overall improved energy, and even his coat seems shinier and less dull.

I feel so relieved to see Brooks so happy and energetic, and feel good that I’m giving him the best nutrients, health, and life I can give him.

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About the Creator

Jesus Montilla

✧ f1b standard #goldendoodle

✧ 🧁 feb 15th, 2022

✧ florida pup • orlando

✧ just a dood + his dads 🌈

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