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Assistance Dogs In The Workplace

Since it’s come up, I thought I’d take a moment to explain for those who don’t know how all this works.

One would think that if a disabled person has a service (assistance) dog, that their dog accompanies them literally everywhere including work. However, there are different sets of laws that govern different areas of life, and the workplace is one of those areas with different laws.

When you, as the disabled handler of an assistance dog, are hired for a job, the dog is not automatically accepted as part of the package deal. Like in the US, you have to ask for what’s called “reasonable accommodations” for your disability. In some cases, the most reasonable accommodation would be for your dog to accompany you to the workplace.

In other cases, other arrangements may be suggested and offered by your employer to mitigate your disability reasonably WITHOUT the dog. Most food service industry jobs fall into this category, jobs directly working with wild animals is another.

In the food service industry, a dog can’t legally be in the kitchen where food is prepared, because of hygiene issues. Waitressing is tricky for the same reason. And as Hostess/Receptionist/PR it would mean having the dog directly in the doorway, impeding access for guests, and putting the dog in a high traffic area increases the risk of injury to the dog.

All that said, alternative reasonable accommodations have been put into place since it is not reasonable for Journey to accompany me to work. Such alternatives include: short, split shifts to reduce stress load, a low stress position, inconspicuous check ins from coworkers (in my case, a coworker will occasionally shoot me a thumbs up. If I’m unable to return the gesture, I need help. If I am able to return it, all clear, carry on – this allows everyone to make sure I’m safe and ok without making my disability obvious to guests and without interrupting the business).

Obviously I will miss Juju while I’m working. But I have to support my family and my workplace has set up reasonable, workable alternatives to keep me safe. So it’s all good.

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Quarterly Raw Food Order – December 2015

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It’s that time again! Here’s the breakdown of our raw order for December.

Currently on hand, I have 2x 2kg chubs of ground mixes (what exactly they are, I don’t know, since I tend to scramble the chubs in the freezer so that every time I pull one out, it’s something different), a 2kg bag of chicken quarters, and 12 tuppers of fresh fish that I tossed in the freezer.

I also have a pack of 4 trachea in there.

All told, that’s about 22 days worth of food, but because I don’t want my dog to eat fish every day, it was time to place an order.

This quarter’s order consisted of:

  • 2 cases of chicken/beef/veg blend – 12kg (26.5 lbs) total – 28,58€ ($30.21)
  • 2 cases of lamb/chicken/veg blend – 12kg (26.5 lbs) total – 30,30€ ($32.03)
  • 1 case of salmon/beef/veg blend – 6kg (13.25 lbs) total – 16,86€ ($17.82)
  • 1 case of turkey blend – 6kg (13.25 lbs) total – 19,62€ ($20.74)
  • 1 case of 100% ground whole chicken – 6kg (13.25 lbs) total – 12,75€ ($13.48)
  • 1 case of puppy mix – 6kg (13.25 lbs) total – 20.49€ ($21.66)
  • 1 case of Yum large RMB – 9 bones total – 15,39€ ($16.27)

What’s in the mix?

Turkey blend:
Turkey 60%, Lamb Tripe 20%, Zucchini 9.5%, Apple 9.499%, Garlic 0.001%, EVOO 1%

Puppy Mix:
Chicken 40%, Green Tripe 20%, Beef 15%, Salmon 5%, Chard 5%, Carrots 5%, Sardine 3.999%, Turnip 3%, Eggshell 1%, Spirulina 1%, EVOO 1%, Garlic 0.001%

Lamb blend:
Chicken 60%, Lamb 19%, Carrot 9.999%, Chard 5%, Turnip 5%, EVOO 1%, Garlic 0.001%

Chicken-Beef blend:
Chicken 60%, Beef 19%, Carrot 9.999%, Chard 5%, Turnip 5%, EVOO 1%, Garlic 0.001%

Salmon blend:
Salmon 20%, Beef 59%, carrot 8.999%, Chard 5%, Turnip 5%, Eggshells 1%, Salmon oil 1%, Garlic 0.001%

With tax (10%), my order came to 158,39€ ($167.45) and combined with everything I have on hand, will feed Journey for 100 days. That works out to a total cost of about 47,50€ ($50.21) per month, or 1,58€ ($1.67) per day.

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Quarterly Raw Food Order – March 2015

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It’s time for me to change the format of our raw food order posts, because it’s no longer monthly or bimonthly and I need to accept that now, as hard as it is. From here out, until I have a second dog, it will be the Quarterly order.

Currently on hand, I have 5x 2kg chubs of assorted ground mixes (mostly because when my order comes in, I scramble the chubs and draw them out of the freezer at random so that I can ensure the most variety), 5 chicken leg quarters, and 1 pre-thawed meal (for today) in the fridge. All told, I have roughly 2.5 weeks worth of food on hand.

This quarter I am trying out a new provider, that has different blends from our usual source, and different case formats as well.

Order for this quarter consists of:

  • 1 case of chicken/veg blend – 12kg (26.5 lbs) – 33.50€ ($37.64/case)
  • 1 case of beef/chicken/veg blend – 12kg (26.5 lbs) – 36.50€ ($41/case)
  • 1 case of lamb/chicken/veg blend – 12kg (26.5 lbs) – 37.50€ ($42.13/case)
  • 1 small case of chunky beef/lamb/veg blend – 5kg (11 lbs) – 17.10€ ($19.21/case)
  • 1 bag of 5 whole beef trachea – 5.50€ ($6.18/bag)

All of the above came as a “value pack” and had a 5% discount applied, bringing the price from 131€ ($147.18) to 124.45€ ($139.89).

In addition to the above, I also ordered:

  • 1 small case of duck/fruit/trachea blend – 6kg (13.25 lbs) – 21.90€ ($24.61/case)
  • 7 bags of whole beef trachea (5 trachea per bag, total 35) – 33€ ($37)

I’m a little excited about this order, because Journey hasn’t had duck before. That’s why I only ordered a small case, in case he doesn’t like it or it doesn’t sit well with him. He should also enjoy the trachea, which are a fantastic source of glucosamine and chondroitin, and help scale teeth as well.

To this, I will be adding our regular standing order of free raw meaty bones, usually chicken carcasses, from our butcher, as well as fresh fish.

What’s in the mix?

Chicken/veg: 
70% chicken, 29% apples, turnips, carrots and alfalfa, 1% EVOO

Beef/Chicken/veg: 
50% chicken, 30% beef, 19% apples, turnips, carrots and alfalfa, 1% EVOO

Lamb/Chicken/veg: 
60% lamb (heart, lung and trimmings), 20% chicken, 19% turnips, carrots and alfalfa, 1% EVOO

Chunky Beef/Lamb/veg: 
44% lamb (heart, lung and trimmings), 44% beef, 11% turnips, carrots and parsley, 1% EVOO

Duck/Fruit/trachea: 
85% duck, 10% pineapple, 3% apple, 2% beef trachea

So that’s a grand total of 47kg (103.6 lbs) of meat mixes, all with bone and organ, so I don’t need to add anything there apart from the above mentioned carcasses and fish, plus 50 beef trachea which can be used as a small meal, or as a snack.

This order, plus what I have on hand, will end up lasting us around 4 months this time.

This supplier offers a 10% discount for all orders over 140€, so that plus the 5% on the value pack gives me a total savings of 24.49€. With shipping (6€), my grand total came to 167.51€ ($188.21). Spread over 4 months, that works out to a total cost per month: 41.88€ ($47.05). Cost per day: 1.40€ ($1.57)

Just for comparison’s sake, a 25-30 lb bag of super premium kibble costs 60-70€ ($67-78) and lasts Journey for one month. So I’m not only paying much less for his raw diet, I’m saving 20-30€ ($22-33) per month!

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