brain stimulating dog

Why your dog’s brain health and stimulation is important

When it comes to your dog’s health, your mind probably goes straight to diet and exercise. And yes, of course, both are absolutely essential to their health and wellbeing, but you should also consider their mind, too. Just like it is for us humans, your dog’s brain health and mental stimulation is an integral part of their overall health.

What is mental stimulation?

Think of mental stimulation as a workout for your pupper’s brain to keep their cognitive health fighting fit. A bored pup can mean an unhappy pup. To fight boredom, your pupper may find ways to amuse themselves, such as digging holes, barking and chewing on things they shouldn’t, resulting in stressful scenarios for both of you.

How to mentally stimulate your dog

There are a variety of ways you can mentally stimulate your dog. Here are a few that we and our pack both love:

Change your walking routine: It’s easy to stick to the regular walk, but a new route or even a hike will be a welcomed change. The new scents and scenery will help to keep your pupper excited and engaged in their surroundings the next time you venture outside.

Teaching your dog new tricks: Take 5-15 minutes each day to teach your pupper a new trick. Tricks can be a form of mental stimulation for dogs, and they’ll love the cheeky reward at the end (check out our healthy treats here!). Does your dog know how to sit on command or even roll? Why not give it a go!

Treat-based games: Hiding treats or scattering treats in easy-to-reach places is a great enrichment activity. You can also play games where your pupper completes tasks such as putting their toys away or dropping their ball in containers. Give them a treat as a reward when they complete the task successfully – our Chicky Chews or Tripe Straps make the perfect training treats.

Arrange play dates with pupper pals: Set up play dates or take your pup to various dog parks to stimulate them and have them mingle with other people and puppers. When it comes to socialising, there are just a few things to remember:

  • Take it slow when introducing your pupper to new potential friends. Closely monitor them until you’re confident they are getting along well.
  • To avoid the risk of passing along any nasties, you should ensure your pupper is up to date on any vaccinations or flea, tick and worming treatments they may require. We’d recommend speaking to your vet about what they think is best for your pupper.

Use mentally enriching toys: Feed your pupper using enrichment toys and puzzles to make mealtime fun, or even just as a boredom buster. Our favourite items include puzzle toys, snuffle mats and even treats like our Lamb Straws, which can be filled with your pupper’s favourite Lyka recipe or even a slick of xylitol-free peanut butter! Remember, puppers have much better smell than you, so perhaps try and explore safe aromatherapy scent-based games where you dilute 100% Lavender essential oil and drip a few drops on a toy and see if they can find it!

Rotating your pupper’s toys: Rotating the toys your pupper has access to or introducing new toys every few weeks is an easy and effective way keep them engaged and excited for playtime.

Lyka: Delicious, nutritious brain-boosting meals for your pupper

There are many ways to keep your dog’s brain health in check and their mind entertained and mentally stimulated to ensure they’re happy and healthy. On top of this, they of course, need a good diet. Take the stress out of your pupper’s mealtime by joining the pack and having vet-formulated, complete and balanced fresh recipes delivered to direct to your door. Bursting with brain-loving ingredients such as egg, fish oil, purple & red sweet potatoes and quinoa, our wholefood recipes are perfect for boosting your pupper’s cognitive health.



dog immunity health

Easy ways to keep your dog healthy and boost their immunity

Whilst dogs do not get common colds like us humans, depleted immune systems can result in kennel cough, warts and even skin infections. 

Every time your dog interacts with other dogs, there is a risk they can be exposed to these types of contagious conditions. Keeping your dog healthy and their immunity strong, especially during the cooler months, will help to ensure they stay fit and happy, and avoid any of these nasties.

So, how can you keep your pupper’s immunity strong?

Maintain an ideal weight

It can sometimes be challenging to keep your pupper at an ideal weight for their body shape, age and breed, especially if your pupper loves a few extra treats, but the further your pupper strays from an ideal weight, the more their immune system will struggle. Firstly, you want to make sure you know what your pupper’s ideal weight is – this will depend on their body shape, age and breed. Portion control is the easiest way to ensure your pupper is chowing down on the correct number of calories and serving of food per day. You can speak to your vet about what ideal weight and body shape they would recommend for your pupper based on their health record. As a starting point, you can always assess your pup’s body shape at home using our helpful guide.

Stay calm and stress-free

Stress can be a major contributor to a weakened immune system, as well as impacting your pup’s emotional wellbeing. Like humans, when a pupper is in a stressful situation, they can release cortisol, which in excess can weaken their immunity. Playtime, regular affection, a healthy diet and good sleep, will all assist in keeping your dog happy, healthy and stress-free.

Keeping fit

Keeping your pup fit has been proven to be one of the most effective ways in building and maintaining strong immunity. Active dogs have a stronger immune system than sedentary dogs, so thirty minutes of daily exercise is a good goal to aim for. Exercise can come in the form of walking, playing with a ball or a trip to the local dog park. Plus, it’s good for the humans, too!

Nutrition

Did you know that the gut contains about 70% of the key markers for a pup’s immune system? This means that maintaining good bacterial balance in their gut microbiome is vital in maintaining a healthy immune system. A great way to do this is by adding a probiotic to your pup’s diet alongside a complete and balanced diet.

Why antioxidants are so important to for your pup’s immunity

Antioxidants help in removing oxidised molecules (otherwise known as free radicals) that can accumulate and place cells under stress. Whilst puppers already create their own antioxidant-filled defence system to protect from free radicals, some pups may rely on a bit of a ‘top up’ from their food.

Antioxidant powerhouses you should look out for include:

Vitamin E

Our meals include Vitamin E oil as well as ingredients high in this essential vitamin such as spinach, broccoli and butternut squash. It protects against oxidative damage and is essential for cell function.

Vitamin C

Dogs can synthesise Vitamin C on their own and it plays an important role in their antioxidant intake. Some dogs with imbalances in their microbiome may not be able to manufacture adequate Vitamin C (and Vitamin K). At Lyka, we ensure our meals have the correct balance of nutrients by including Vitamin C-rich foods such as cauliflower, blueberries, basil and bok choy.

Beta-Carotene

Beta-carotene is a vitamin that your pupper’s body is unable to produce, and therefore it’s important to feed them plants or supplements that include beta-carotene to help build their immunity. In our meals, you’ll find ingredients like carrots and butternut squash that are jam-packed with this powerhouse vitamin to help fight disease and infection.  

Omega 3’s

Omega 3’s have antioxidant properties and are a key ingredient aiding anti-inflammation to help with skin and joints, as well as build immunity against common illnesses and even cancer.  

Lyka: help puppers stay healthy and strong

A strong immune system will help to keep your dog healthy and ensure they live the longest and happiest life they can. On top of exercise and playtime, a good diet will do the trick! Each of our signature recipes are complete and balanced for all life stages, and each meal plan is portioned according to the weight, breed, lifestyle and activity level of your pupper. Help boost your pupper’s immunity, join the pack today!



quinoa dogs

Why quinoa is a great addition to your dog’s bowl

Pronounced keen-wah, this ancient grain and powerful superfood is ideal for dogs and a great addition to their diet. You can find quinoa in our Lamb and Turkey Bowls!

What is quinoa?

Native to South America, quinoa has become increasingly popular over the years and is considered to be a powerful superfood for both humans and puppers. Known as a pseudo-cereal grain due to its similarities to a seed, quinoa is gluten-free, making it ideal for puppers with sensitivities or intolerances to wheat. Wheat is a starch that is commonly found in kibble and can cause health issues such as itchy skin and digestive issues. 

Why is quinoa so good for your dog?

Whilst tiny in size, quinoa is jam-packed with goodness and bursting with an extensive list of benefits:

  • A great source of fibre and protein to help keep your pup feeling full for longer.
  • High in antioxidants, quinoa can help fight inflammation and oxidative damage caused by free radicals.
  • Contains optimal levels of healthy fats, and is rich in iron and magnesium.
  • Aids in digestion by removing toxins from the body.
  • Helps to regulate cholesterol and blood sugar levels and is a great option for puppers with high blood lipids, including cholesterol and triglycerides.

Quinoa is also considered to be a complete plant protein, and is high in lysine, methionine and cysteine, amino acids that plant foods are often low in. Finally, feeding quinoa is a great way to ensure your pupper is receiving all the vitamins and minerals they need to live a healthy life.

Adding quinoa to your dog’s diet

Some dogs can find grains such as corn, wheat, and soy hard to digest and can even cause dietary related issues, so with many incredible benefits, quinoa is a great substitute and put simply, adding quinoa to your pup’s diet just makes sense. It’s important to note, though, that some puppers can be sensitive to quinoa.

When adding it to your pup’s bowl, start by giving small amounts and see how they respond. Always ensure the quinoa is cooked and plain to enable proper digestion, and make sure to avoid any sauce or seasoning. If you notice any changes in your pup’s bowel movements, including constipation, diarrhoea, or even vomiting, remove the quinoa from their diet and refrain from feeding it to them again.

Where does our quinoa come from?

Our quinoa is grown and harvested in the mountains of Bolivia. Staying true to our ethical values, no insecticides, pesticides, preservatives or additives are used at any stage of the process.

Lyka: bursting with superfoods to make your pupper feel super good

With an extensive line-up of signature recipes on offer, each containing a handpicked mix of superfoods, Lyka’s recipes will help your pupper glow from the inside out. Along with quinoa, you will find turmeric, blueberries, kale, spirulina, hemp seeds and psyllium seed husk, with each recipe bursting with nutritional, vet-approved goodness.  



mushrooms dog

Why your dog should be munching on mushrooms

We are very selective about which carbohydrates we add to our recipes, but button mushrooms are a big yes from Team Lyka. Bursting with a delicious flavour that intensifies when cooked, they are both pupper and vet-approved when it comes to taste and nutrition.

Why you should be adding button mushrooms to your pup’s diet

Buttons assist in regulating your dog’s immune system and can help to control free radicals due to their high antioxidant content. They are also known to support and prevent allergies, cancer, and autoimmune diseases.

The beta-glucan and prebiotic content in these little babies may help to improve metabolism and protect your pup’s microbiome and gut health. They are low in fat and calories and a powerful source of Vitamin D, protein, and fibre. A rich source of healthy fats and digestive enzymes button mushrooms really are a power food.

They also contain important minerals including selenium, zinc, potassium, B complex and folic acid.

Are shiitake mushrooms good for dogs, too?

It is well known that shiitake mushrooms are good for humans, but they are also a great food for your pup. Native to East Asia and used in traditional herbal medicine shiitake mushrooms are packed with vitamins. They are high in vitamin B and D, zinc, selenium, iron, copper, and protein, including amino acid glutamine.

They will boost your dog’s immunity and have antiviral, anti-bacterial and antifungal properties. Like buttons they also contain beta-glucans which will support your dog’s gut health and their phytonutrient content can support heart health.

If your pup is prone to gaining weight adding shiitake mushrooms to their diet may help. The soluble fibre content in these mushrooms can help to increase satiety (the feeling of fullness).

Shiitake mushrooms are also good for your dog’s skin and coat and can improve skin healing. This is thanks to their selenium and zinc content. These trace elements can also reduce cancer and DNA damage and improve joint health.

IMPORTANT

Wild mushrooms are a no-go for your dog. We all know dogs love to sniff around and sometimes eat things they shouldn’t.  Whilst only a small amount of wild mushrooms are toxic, the ones that are toxic are very toxic and it can be difficult to tell which mushrooms are toxic to dogs. If you are concerned that your pup has ingested a wild mushroom, contact your local vet immediately.

Locally grown and sourced

Fresh from farm to bowl, our mushies are grown and sourced locally from a dedicated and passionate family of mushroom farmers in Sydney. They are handled with the utmost care and are grown on a controlled, environmentally friendly farm, in a process that takes up to six months, with special attention taken to avoid disease and contamination.

SNACK TIP: Mushrooms are a great snack for your pup when fed in moderation. They can be served both raw and cooked. If the latter, we recommend roasting or steaming them. And just make sure to not use any seasoning or additional toppings that you may add to your own mushroom-filled dishes! When it comes to your pup, plain is best.

Lyka: fresh, complete and balanced recipes for hungry puppers

You will find mushrooms in all 5 of our signature recipes which include a mix of whole food ingredients. Our meals are vet-formulated by our in-house Integrative Vet and Lyka co-founder, Dr. Matthew Muir and are balanced to include an optimal mix of vegetables, protein, superfoods, vitamins and minerals. Each ingredient has been handpicked for its benefits to your pup. We use both button and shiitake mushrooms in our recipes. Try our new Kangaroo Bowl which includes button mushrooms!



chia seeds dogs

Why dogs should be chowing down on chia seeds

You may add them to your breakfast or smoothie, but did you know that chia seeds are also great for dogs? In fact, chia seeds are considered a superfood for dogs, too, and help to add an extra dose of goodness to their diet.  

chia seeds dog

So, what are chia seeds?

Chia seeds are edible seeds from a flowering plant in the mint family and are a great way to supercharge your pup’s diet.

They are rich in antioxidants that can help to neutralise free radicals in the body, and contain a powerful mix of phosphorus, iron, calcium, zinc, potassium, magnesium, as well as several vitamins for optimal health.

chia seeds dog

How can they help your pupper?

Whilst they may be teeny tiny, chia seeds certainly pack a punch when it comes to keeping your pup in tip-top shape due to their high nutritional value. They can help with many elements of your pup’s health, including:

Constipation relief
Being a great source of fibre means that chia seeds can help to regulate your pup’s digestive system, and can be a helpful remedy for constipation and keeping their poos in good shape.

Glucose and sugar levels
Chia seeds can help to regulate blood sugar levels, as well as support insulin function, so are a great options for all puppers – especially those with diabetes.

Supporting healthy cells
Chia seeds are bursting with ALA omega-3 fatty acids, which can help to improve heart health by supporting metabolism in the muscle cells. They can also help to improve brain function and eyesight. These fatty acids also assist with keeping your pup’s skin and coat in great condition.

Increasing satiety: A single chia seed can absorb water up to 12 times its weight. This will help to hydrate your pupper and make them feel full for longer. Because of this, chia seeds are great for helping to maintain optimal body weight.

Lyka: putting the super in food

Each of our recipes are carefully formulated by our co-founder and in-house Integrative Vet, Dr. Matthew Muir, alongside a Veterinary Nutritionist, and are designed to provide maximum impact when it comes to health and nutrition. If we won’t eat it, we won’t include it. Your pupper deserves to live their best, healthiest and happiest life, so to ensure they are in optimal health, we use a variety of superfoods including chia seeds (of course!) as well as turmeric, blueberries, kale, shiitake mushroom powder, spinach, spirulina, psyllium seed husk and hemp seeds – all human-grade, all great for your pupper!  



choosing right dog

Choosing the right dog for you and your family

You’ve had the discussions, you’ve made your home dog-friendly, you’ve worked out who will walk, feed and train the furry new addition, and now you’re ready to bring a new pup into your home. To make the process as seamless as possible, we’ve pulled together a few tips to help you in choosing the right dog and finding the perfect match for you and your family.  

Temperament

Like humans, dogs and dog breeds have varying temperaments, and different personalities and behaviours. Depending on what you are looking for, you can research breeds based on the way they typically behave. For example, if you are seeking a dog with an easy-going temperament, Golden Retrievers, Labradors and Beagles are known for being calm and good for families and children.

To decide on the type of temperament that would best suit your home, consider the following:

  • Is everyone in your household comfortable with having a dog? 
  • What type of personality would fit best with everyone in your home?
  • Are there any other pets in the home and how will they respond to living with a dog?
  • If you have other pets like cats, rabbits or chickens, it is important to consider the prey drive of the breed you are considering


Top tip! Even though certain breeds are known for their temperaments, behaviour is often shaped through training. Consider how much time you can invest in training your dog. A puppy requires a high level of care and time, whereas an older dog may already be trained and socialised. 

Energy & activity level

A key consideration is the level of activity your dog needs and the level of activity you can or are willing to give. Some breeds require high levels of exercise, whereas others, such as Bulldogs, are not known for being overly active. Alternatively, you may be after a dog with high levels of energy, in which case, you may consider German Shepherds, Border Collies or Australian Shepherds.

Physical activity can also serve as mental stimulation, and puppies will generally have more energy than adult dogs with their own unique exercise requirements.

It’s a good idea to think about the following:

  • Who will exercise your dog?
  • Does your lifestyle enable you to walk your dog regularly? 
  • Do you have access to a dog park, or streets that are dog-friendly and safe to walk in?

Exercise for dogs is not only important for their health, but it plays a large role in engagement and keeping them happy. If this is ignored, it can lead to a range of behavioural issues including hyperactivity, that can be difficult to correct.

choosing right dog

Size

The size of your dog doesn’t necessarily correlate to how much energy they have. You may think that a larger dog would be full of energy, however some large breeds such as Great Danes, are not known for being overly active.

The size of your dog can, however, impact their dietary requirements. Larger dogs will require different amounts of food than a smaller dog. Dietary requirements can change as your puppy grows, and some breeds will experience varying degrees of growth. Here at Lyka, we are passionate about sustainability and health, so we recommend thinking about your food budget before deciding on which dog you will bring into your home, particularly when considering large breeds.

It’s also important to know of any health conditions your puppy may be subject to, as some breeds are more prone to health-related issues than others. 

Where to find your new pup?

Chatting with other dog owners about their experience is a great way to find out if certain breeds are for you. If possible, we recommend exploring rescuing before deciding to take a puppy on board, we also recommend reviewing how to avoid puppy farms.

If you’re still unsure of which breed will best suit your family, you could try taking a quiz!

You can also check out our handy guide to bringing your new dog home, to ensure an easy and seamless transition as possible.

Lyka: customised meal plans for pups of all ages & sizes

Ensuring your puppy is being well-fed is incredibly important to keep them happy and healthy. Each breed has different dietary requirements, so here at Lyka, we tailor meal plans to suit your pup based on their breed, age, weight and activity levels. If you have a puppy, their serving size will change as they grow, so we will provide you with a planner with expected key milestones and we will adapt their pouch size once you inform us that your pup has reached these.

Our meals contain high quality human-grade ingredients, including protein, veggies and superfoods to help your pup look and feel their best from the inside out. We also ensure that our meals contain calcium and phosphorus maintained at low levels to help support your puppy’s healthy skeletal development.



spirulina dog allergy

The benefits of spirulina for your dog

Spirulina is a type of algae and has been identified as a powerful superfood that can benefit your dog. Nutrient-dense, it contains high levels of antioxidants as well as anti-inflammatory properties and has been shown to enhance immunity in humans and other animals.

But, it doesn’t stop there.

Spirulina contains iron for haemoglobin and red blood cells, as well as magnesium for energy production, and potassium for the nervous system and normal bodily function. Recent research in animals indicates that it may also reduce allergies in dogs.

What is spirulina?

Spirulina is a type of blue-green algae, a freshwater plant which grows in tropical areas in Asia, the Americas and Central Africa.

It is safe for consumption by humans and animals, and became well-known after NASA used it as a supplement for astronauts going on space missions. Cool, huh?

What are the benefits of spirulina?

Spirulina packs a punch thanks to its powerful nutrition profile. High in protein, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and essential fatty acids, it has been shown to be successful in reducing inflammation and enhancing immunity, whilst high doses in humans demonstrated protective effects toward allergic rhinitis.

Spirulina & immunity

Recent research has highlighted that like humans, dogs can also receive immune benefits from consuming spirulina.

A study measured the response of dogs to a rabies vaccine with one test group supplemented with spirulina and the other having none. The group with spirulina supplementation showed a higher vaccine response and immune status and enhanced gut health.

Can spirulina help with dog allergies?

Incredibly, research in mice is indicating that spirulina provides enhanced defence against infectious diseases and reduces allergic inflammation.

Based on the results of the study into the immune benefits that dogs received from spirulina, it is hoped that the anti-allergenic response in mice may well apply to dogs, but more research is necessary. Lyka is encouraged by this and will watch with interest.

Lyka: Find spirulina in our Grass-Fed Beef Bowl

Our high protein spirulina is sustainably harvested using a low energy harvest system to ensure as little impact on the environment as possible. Dried at low temperatures to ensure the maximum amount of amino acids and nutrients are retained, the spirulina is free of toxins and regularly tested for continual safety. You can find spirulina in our Grass-Fed Beef Bowl.

At Lyka we are committed to staying up to date with the latest research in dog nutrition and natural feeding, so that we can continue to deliver the very best food for your favourite furry friend.

Are you ready to start your fresh food journey and experience the benefits of spirulina? Order a Starter Box today!



healthy dog food

Why unprocessed dog food is best

Intuitively, it makes sense that unprocessed, healthy fresh food is better for your dog. But, since the development of kibble, there haven’t been many studies into how the highly processed food can affect the health of dogs. DogRisk is changing this through their groundbreaking work into how nutrition, the environment and genetics, can affect disease in dogs. Findings indicate that dogs fed kibble have elevated levels of metabolic stress and systemic inflammation.

Who are DogRisk?

The DogRisk team, based at the University of Helsinki in Finland, are dedicated to interdisciplinary research on dog health. They have been collecting data since 2009, looking at diet, disease and habitats.

Their research studies specific dog diets for long periods of time and observes changes including metabolism, blood nutritional profile, gene function and other molecular changes.

What have the DogRisk studies shown so far?

In an interview with Dr. Karen Becker, a leader in natural feeding, Robin Moore from DogRisk explains how they look at changes in dogs on a molecular level and study how different diets affects dogs.

DogRisk research has specifically investigated the levels of metabolites associated with different diets. Metabolites are regarded as the immediate bi-product of the metabolic process. Primary metabolites are those that are directly involved in the growth, development, and reproduction of an organism whereas secondary metabolites are those that are not. Thus, primary metabolites are critical to the survival and the fecundity of an organism. Secondary metabolites may not be as crucial but the lack or insufficiency could lead to the impairment of the organism.

Before assigning dogs to either a raw or a kibble diet, the team looked at the levels of metabolites and no significant patterns were found.

After assigning the diets, dogs eating dry food experienced changes in their metabolites, which suggested higher levels of biological stress on their body.

Dogs fed dry food also had higher levels of homocysteine, which is the marker for disease in dogs. These diseases include skin, kidney, and heart disease as well as cancer.

Why we believe in fresh dog food

As humans, we all know that a less processed diet is better for us. The more natural our food is the better – the same goes for dogs.

Kibble undergoes a process called extrusion, where the food requires high levels of carbohydrate and is cooked at temperatures exceeding 200 degrees Celsius. Natural vitamins and minerals are lost during the heating process, so typically artificial ones are added in their place. Evidence suggests that moving away from a dry food diet can reduce the risk of cancer and other diseases.

Lyka: fresh, balanced & nutritious

At Lyka, we aim to change the norm of feeding kibble by providing fresh food to Australian dogs. Lyka meals are minimally processed to preserve nutrients, but lightly cooked to make it more gentle on tummies and stop pathogenic contamination. Each ingredient has been hand-picked for its nutritional value, with our in-house Integrative Vet, Dr. Matthew Muir, overseeing each formulation alongside a veterinary nutritionist. Order a Starter Box today and experience the fresh food difference for yourself!



butternut squash dog

Butternut squash: a nutrient-packed winter warmer for your dog

Butternut squash or butternut pumpkin – whatever you call it, this brightly coloured yet humble winter warmer, packs a punch for your dog when it comes to taste and nutritional benefits. 

butternut squash dog

The benefits of butternut squash

Rich in Vitamin A

Just like its orange cousin, the carrot, squash contains plenty of Vitamin A. This essential nutrient is key to healthy eyes and good eyesight, and also plays a starring role in fetal development and immune and cell function.

Filled with prebiotic fibre

Dog ownership is filled with poop talk, but no one likes picking up sloppy poop! The amount of prebiotic fibre in squash can really help your pup’s poop texture and the overall health of their gut and microbiome.

Brimming with beta-carotene

This powerful antioxidant helps with maintaining youthfulness and has been scientifically shown to restore immune responses in older and senior dogs that had previously shown signs of a slower immunological response.

A great source of Vitamin C

Dogs can produce Vitamin C themselves, but a booster in their diet is a good thing, especially for sick or stressed puppers, and can help to reduce inflammation and prevent free radical damage.

butternut squash dog

Which recipes contain this powerful ingredient?

You can find delicious butternut squash in our drool-worthy Free-Range Chicken and Barn-Raised Turkey Bowls, sitting amongst other wholesome ingredients, including spinach, fish oil, psyllium seed husk and carrot. Fresh is always best – are you ready to make the switch? Order a Starter Box and give your dog the chance to try the fresh food life today!



dog-friendly beaches queensland

Best dog-friendly beaches in Queensland

Spending the day at the beach is the perfect way to unwind, get some deliciously fresh air and exercise – and it’s made all the better when you can bring your bestie pupper along. And Queensland certainly delivers when it comes to dog-friendly beaches.

Red Beach

Less than two hours from Brisbane, Red Beach is located on Bribie Island. This is the perfect place to let your dog roam and have some off-leash fun. Positioned between Woorim Beach and Bongaree, Red Beach is 8km of sand and surf, where you can hire a boat, take a walk on the nature trails or have an off-road adventure on 4WD tracks. Please note, though, this beautiful spot doesn’t have any amenities.

Colmslie Recreational Reserve

Adjoining the Brisbane River, the Colmslie Beach Reserve and off-leash dog park is only 13 minutes east of Brisbane City. Its gentle waves and sandy shores make for a fun and safe outing for your dog. There’s also a great children’s playground with an Octopus Garden, barbecues and a sheltered picnic spot. With easy parking and a dog park with agility equipment, what more could you ask for?

dog-friendly beaches queensland

Sunshine Beach

Sunshine Beach is one of the most popular dog-friendly beaches, and for good reason. Top surf, cafes and an off-leash area at the north end are all major drawcards. There’s a small carpark near the beach entrance that has shower and toilet facilities. Path access to the beach runs alongside a stormwater creek, creating natural division between the off-leash section and the rest of the beach.

Looking for more dog fun in the area? Check out the Noosa Festival of Surfing, which holds the annual Surfing Dog Championships, which showcases the best dog talent around!

Serenia Beach

A short drive north from Hervey Bay, Burrum Heads is a pretty fishing village with plenty of off-leash areas, including the picturesque Serenia Beach. What’s even better, is that Burrum Heads also has loads of dog-friendly accommodation. So, if you’re looking for a (COVID-safe!) getaway with your beloved pupper, this is the place for you!

Ellis Beach

Last but not least, we can’t forget about the incredible dog beaches in Tropical North Queensland. Half an hour from Cairns, Ellis Beach should be first on the list, where dogs can run from the rocks at the southern end. Once your pup has bounded around the sandy shores, you can head on over to Trinity Beach, Bramston Beach, Machans Beach, Buchans Point, Clifton Beach and Kewarra Beach, all of which are dog-friendly and so welcoming to furry friends.

Top tip! Make every beach visit a safe and fun one for you and your pup by ensuring the following:

  • Check out local council websites for any updates before you go
  • Keep your dog on a leash when travelling to or from the area
  • Always ensure you have your dog under safe and effective control, including being able to call them to you
  • Finally, always scoop your pup’s poop!
dog-friendly beaches queensland

Lyka: fresh food means more energy

A day of sun, surf and sand can be great fun for your pup, but also tiring – that’s where we come in. Lyka’s recipes contain high-quality ingredients, including powerful omega 3s to help your dog’s joints, as well as antioxidants and phytonutrients to help enhance their exploratory senses. Every ingredient is purposeful and has been handpicked with your pup’s optimal health in mind.

Experience the difference a fresh food diet can make to your pup’s energy levels – order a Starter Box today!  



dog chews how to prevent choking

How to choose the right chew for your dog

Dogs love to chew, but it’s best when it’s not your favourite shoe! Chewing aids can be a great alternative, but it’s important that you heed a few safety rules to avoid mishaps, so we’ve prepared a few tips on the dos and don’ts of dog chews. 

Why are chews good for your dog?

Dogs can literally spend hours chewing bones. It keeps their jaws strong and promotes healthy gums by removing tartar and scraping away bacteria from the teeth. 

Chewing is also an enjoyable and mentally stimulating activity for puppers and they even use it to relieve anxiety.  

Quality chews often contain a plethora of nutrients, including collagen and chondroitin, which are the building block of your dog’s bones, joints, and cartilage. These ingredients can be especially helpful for dogs with arthritis

If it’s pouring with rain and you can’t go for a walk, a good chewing session is a great way to calm an active puppy. Chews are also fantastic for teething puppies and will teach them positive chewing behaviour rather than munching on electrical cords or couch corners. 

Chewing aids should be combined with regular brushing and dental check-ups with your vet to maintain dental health and should be used a few times a week.  

dog chews how to prevent choking

What are the risks with chews?

Different dogs have varied eating and chewing styles, so it’s important that you know your pupper’s eating style. 

Gulpers tend to take the treats in whole or large chunks, which means they don’t really chew at all. If this is your dog, it is important that you calm them down first before giving them their treat to avoid choking. 

Destroyers tend to make a big mess chewing anything they can find, and they don’t always swallow their destruction. Long-lasting chews are best for these types of puppers so they can’t make too much of a mess. 

Nibblers on the other hand, take their time and savour their treats.

What to look out for when choosing treats?

  • Make sure the treat is the length of your dog’s head before they start eating so that they can’t swallow it and be sure to remove bones once they get too small. 
  • Avoid pigs’ ears as they are very high in fat and can trigger pancreatitis. 
  • Never feed cooked or smoked bones as they can splinter more easily posing a choking risk. 
  • Processed meat treats containing nitrates/nitrites are suspected to be carcinogenic so are not recommended 
dog chews how to prevent choking

If your dog has digestive issues, our in-house Integrative Vet, Dr. Matthew Muir, recommends feeding treats on an empty stomach, as more stomach acid can be dedicated to digesting chews to ensure complete digestion. 

If you have a Brachycephalic dog, such as a Pug or Shih Tzu, take extra care with treats as these pups may choke more easily.  
 
It’s important that you seek advice from your vet about the most appropriate chews for your pupper, and we advise always supervising your dog when giving them treats, especially bones. 

What should you do if your dog chokes?

The Heimlich Manoeuvre should be practiced immediately if your dog is choking. We recommend you familiarise yourself with this method as a handy first aid tool. 
 
Even if you manage to dislodge the treat or your dog is still breathing, they will need to see a vet as soon as possible to check that no treat fragments are stuck and that there is no damage. 

Lyka: it’s time to chomp & chew

Chews are a wonderful way to keep your pupper happy and healthy. We offer two types of chews – Lamb Straws and Pig Twigs, both have which received the chomp of approval and we know your pupper will love them! Our Dental pack is a great way to sample both varieties, and includes two pouches of Lamb Straws and one pouch of Pig Twigs. These popular treats give you the chance to choose the appropriate size that is safest for your dog to minimise any risk of choking. 

Our chews are available exclusively to Lyka pack members – order a Starter Box and add a pouch to your first delivery today!



healthy dog treats

The inside scoop on our treats packaging

At Lyka, we believe the health of our planet is just as important as the health of your pups. Put simply, we care – a lot.  

From our ingredients to the pouches that contain our food, we are all about quality and sustainability. And our brand-new treats line-up is no different. We are constantly listening to your feedback and taking on board what you love, what you like and what you want to see from us moving forward.  

We are incredibly proud of our treats packaging – from its functionality (say hello to resealable pouches!) to how great it looks. It’s also biodegradable and recyclable, making it so much easier for you to help our beautiful planet PLUS treat your pupper. 

Recyclable and biodegradable

 You might be used to taking a trip to your local supermarket with your Lyka pouches in tow, ready to dispose of them in the RedCycle soft plastic bins, but this time around, we wanted to simplify this process.  
 
Our treats packaging can be tossed into your regular bin at home. That’s right, our brand-new treats packaging is biodegradable and will break down in just a few months – much shorter than the 2 years it takes a banana peel. Crazy good!   

What about the rest of our packaging?

Every single piece of our packaging can be recycled or reused, and we encourage our customers to reuse our packaging wherever you can. 

Our meal pouches are recyclable in RedCycle bins, which can be found at your local supermarket. Our boxes are also 100% recyclable – just flatten and pop straight into your recycling bin. 

Our wool insulation is a triple threat – biodegradable, recyclable and compostable. We’ve chosen this insulation because not only is it environmentally friendly, it’s so easy for our customers to reuse.  Pop it into your shopping bags to keep groceries cool, or use it in your DIY projects – we’ve seen customers use the wool for worm farms, insulating a caravan and even making their own bedhead! 

Treat your furry friend – guilt free!

Made with whole food ingredients, our single protein treats are a healthy way to reward your pupper. And with so many options to choose from, there’s a treat for even the pickiest of puppers. Combine this with packaging that will break down in a few short months, and you’ve made treat time completely guilt-free, just how it should be!  
 
Our treats are exclusively available to Lyka subscribers – there’s never been a better time to join the pack. Head to our website to build your customised Lyka box today.  



how often to wash dog

How often should you wash your dog?

Do you have one of those dogs that loves to roll in mud and splash through puddles or is your pupper a more refined inside type? No matter which, it is still important that they are given a wash every now and then. It will keep them looking their best and smelling fresh and is an important part of grooming.

Why do you need to wash your dog?

One of the main reasons to wash your dog is to prevent them bringing their dirt and smells inside your home. Dirty paws on the couch or bed are not usually welcome and let’s face it, snuggling up to a sweet smelling pupper is nicer.

An important part of the washing process is getting rid of painful tangles that can occur with a build-up of dirt and grass seeds – and sometimes mud! It will also help to get rid of that ‘doggy’ smell as you scrub away old oils and remove shedding fur.

Bath time is also a perfect opportunity to check your pupper for any scrapes or parasites and keep on top of any changes that you may need to discuss with your vet. Whether you wash your dog yourself or prefer to use a groomer it is important that you do these checks regularly to keep on top of your pup’s health.

How often do you need to wash your dog?

how often to wash dog

We recommend not washing more than once a fortnight and at least every 3 months. Bathing too frequently can strip natural oils from your pupper’s fur, which they need to keep their coat and skin healthy. Dogs with oily coats or longer hair attract more dirt and will require more regular baths. Basset Hounds and Labrador Retrievers fit into this category. If you have an active pup that does a lot of hiking or swimming and tends to roll in dirt, then more regular washing is recommended. Puppies and more senior dogs may benefit from less frequent baths as they are more sensitive.

What you use to wash your pup is just as important as how often you wash them. Never use human products on your dog, including shampoo, conditioner or toothpaste. While these might be safe for you, they’re not for your pup and may have harmful ingredients. Make sure to look at the ingredients lists of any products you pick for your pupper. Try to avoid synthetic ingredients, and pick all-natural products where you can.

If your dog has a skin condition they may need special shampoos or a different washing routine. Your vet will be able to advise on suitable shampoos and the frequency of baths. Our vet, Dr Matthew Muir recommends a soothing 5-minute soak in lukewarm green tea or chamomile for itchy paws.

What about brushing?

Brushing is a very important part of your dog’s grooming routine and should be done at least every 2-3 days. It prevents matting, removes excess hair and debris, and can help with shedding of a seasonal coat, keeping your dog’s skin and fur clean and healthy.

In the meantime, it is important to keep up with other aspects of your dog’s grooming like brushing teeth and nail trimming.

Lyka: the ultimate reward

To keep bath time positive a little reward is sure to be well received. What better way to congratulate your pup on a job well done than giving them a delicious and nutritious Lyka meal – try a Starter Box today!



Lyka Story: How lightly cooked meals help Grace and Walden’s tummies

Fiona is a dedicated fur mama to two golden oldies: Grace, who is 14, and Walden, who is 12. She had always fed them a raw-food diet, which she thought was the healthiest option, especially considering that Grace has had severe stomach issues since she was only 1. After seeing numerous vets, holistic and Chinese medicine practitioners, Fiona was still no closer to finding a solution to Grace’s on-again, off-again bouts of sickness and weight loss. Walden had always had a healthy gut, but began to have problems with his raw food much later in life. After years of searching for a solution, Fiona found Lyka, and her pups are back to their healthiest selves.

Meet Fiona and her loving Labradors, Grace and Walden

Fiona has had both of her pups since they were just 8 weeks old, and describes them as oh so different:

“Grace is exceptionally sweet and has always only wanted to please me. Our bond is very strong, and we are rarely apart. Waldy, as his friends know him – we call our bad boy of rock and roll. You name it, he has done it. Only yesterday, I left him inside for half an hour and came back to nutritional yeast all over the kitchen and living room floors. He is extremely naughty, but in equal parts, beautiful.”

Their different personalities mean that Fiona gets the best of both worlds, with no shortage of funny tales to share:

“Waldy has so many funny stories, I could write a book about his exploits. From eating his new R.M. Williams collar at age six months, to escaping into a creek at the ten months to chase a duck. My poor husband spent about two hours swimming in that creek trying to catch him! Gracie has spent her life being so perfect, that I really have no funny stories as such. Just many, many tales of extreme love and devotion. She has been my constant, my mate, and my very, very best friend.”

Fiona’s search for healthy food

Fiona raised both her pups on a raw diet which she prepared herself, feeding pulverised fruits and vegetables, raw meat and bones in an effort to keep Grace’s ongoing stomach issues and reflux under control:

“Since she was about one year old, she has had many digestive issues, which we just could not get to the bottom of. She has been to many vets, holistic and Chinese medicine practitioners, naturopaths, acupuncturists, etc; however, this has been an on again off again problem her entire life.”

The search for a new diet began around a year ago, when Fiona was struggling to find any food that Grace would eat. She tried special raw foods, cooked foods, roast chicken, sweet potatoes, salmon, eye-fillet steak – even Grace’s favourite sourdough toast. Then, she started looking for someone who prepared fresh, lightly cooked meals with helpful superfoods which could help to soothe Grace’s digestive tract and get her eating again:

“I couldn’t believe it when I found Lyka. The Lyka food sounded so good, and I felt it was perhaps the best chance of getting Grace eating again. Grace took to Lyka immediately, and started eating reliably again.”

Walden had always had a healthy stomach, and had been able to tolerate raw food along with his habits of sneaking into the kitchen cabinets and eating anything and everything! However, he started to experience issues with his raw diet too, which left him vomiting after meals. He had also suffered from skin allergies and coughing for most of his life, so Fiona decided to see if Lyka could help him too, and immediately, Walden stopped throwing up.

These Labradors are loving Lyka!

Since finding Lyka, Grace and Walden have experienced more benefits than just keeping their meals down:

“Lyka has improved Grace’s quality of life immensely, and I am so very grateful for this high-quality food that is clearly made with such dedication to the health of our loved ones. Lyka is keeping Grace eating, and this is everything. Her coat is also even softer than it was, she seems to have more energy, and she is maintaining her weight well.  Within a couple of weeks of being on Lyka, Walden’s itching reduced dramatically, as did his coughing. I was astounded.  He also, of course, loves it!”

For these two senior pups, these health improvements are great to see for Fiona, who can’t get enough of no longer having to spend time in the kitchen preparing their meals:

“Words cannot capture the gratitude I feel to Lyka for being instrumental in keeping my beautiful dogs going. Grace and Walden think they are the bees’ knees now that they also have a food subscription service:  they think it is such a win/ win.  They get the best possible food, and their Mum gets a well-earned holiday!”

Lyka: complete and balanced food for all life stages

Designed by our in-house vet and veterinary nutritionist, our Lyka meals have all the nutrients your pup needs, no matter whether they’re puppy or a golden oldie. To see the effects of Lyka for yourself, head to our website and build your customised Lyka box today.



dog pic

How to take the perfect pic of your dog

Whether it’s for their Instagram account or a cute new wallpaper for yourself, the perfect pic of your dog is a wonderful way to capture memories. Check out our top tips for taking professional-looking shots of your furry and very photogenic bestie.

Light it up

  • Though it may seem odd, overcast days actually provide ideal conditions for taking outdoor photos, as the clouds create a soft, even light. If it’s a very bright day, look for a shady spot, or opt for early morning or late afternoon shoots to take advantage of the softer light outside.
  • To enhance lighting indoors, set up near a door or window. If it’s dark, rather than using the flash, turn on some lamps for a more natural-looking light.
  • Use your smartphone’s inbuilt photo editing tools to adjust lighting and colour if you feel the original shot is too bright or too dark.

Background matters

  • A clutter-free background keeps the focus on your pup and not on the mountain of washing that awaits you.
  • A background that contrasts with your dog’s fur colour will really make the image pop.
  • Consider taking a burst of photos if your dog is on the move to give you a better chance of getting that perfect shot.
  • Pro tip: if your pup is running after a ball or chasing their furry friends, move the camera along with them to get a clear photo of your pup against a blurred background.

Strike a pose

  • For a natural photo that really captures your dog’s personality, let your dog be themselves and get shots of them doing their coolest tricks or playing in their favourite places.
  • Hold up a healthy treat or their preferred toy in the spot where you want them to look. Even better if someone else can hold up the treat for you so you can get creative and try different angles and poses.
  • For a nice portrait, crouch down to be at the same level as your dog before you get them to say ‘cheese’.
  • Pro tip: give your pup a brush to help make their coat as soft and as glossy as possible. And if you can, take them out for some exercise right before taking the photo so they’ll pant and smile for your shot like a seasoned pro.



We’d love to see your dog’s photos with their Lyka boxes, pouches or bowls of their favourite recipe, so be sure tag us @lykapetfood on Instagram and Facebook and use the hashtag #citizensoflyka so that we don’t miss any of your adorable shots. Happy snapping!

Lyka: helping pups get camera-ready

Jam-packed with delicious whole food ingredients, powerful superfoods and vital nutrients, Lyka’s vet-approved recipes will help your pup to look and feel their best from the inside out. Order a Starter Box today and your pup will be camera-ready wherever they go!



bailey spoodle lyka story

Lyka Story: How fresh, quality dog food helped Bailey’s gurgly tummy

For Marianne’s family, Bailey was the light during a very hard time. It was June 2017 and they had recently and very tragically lost their precious Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Daisy, due to heart failure – just one week shy of what would’ve been her 9th birthday.

“Losing Daisy was just so heartbreaking, she was such a huge part of the family and the house felt so empty without her.”
– Marianne, Bailey’s fur mama

Meeting Bailey

But life works in magical ways, and like it was meant to be, Bailey and Marianne’s family found each other in August 2017, just as they were coming to terms with Daisy’s devastating loss. The family had always intended on getting another furry friend to fill that dog-shaped hole in their hearts, and as it turned out, that was Bailey the Spoodle. He was just what the family needed – a furry ball of adorable puppy love.

“This time, my husband wanted a boy so that he wasn’t outnumbered, as there are already three girls in the family. Bailey had three sisters, who were all super active and barking and biting our ankles, but Bailey was so calm and docile. Once we held him in our arms and he nuzzled in and put his head on my chest, we instantly fell in love with him – how could you not!”
– Marianne, Bailey’s fur mama

lyka story bailey spoodle fresh dog food

The perfect addition

Bailey fitted in seamlessly and immediately became a very entertaining member of the family.

“Bailey is incredibly playful as well as clumsy. He trips over stairs and walks into fly screens – we’ve often wondered if it’s possible to get glasses for dogs! But when it comes to playing with the ball, he has amazing defence skills. I think he must’ve been a champion soccer goalkeeper in a previous life because there is no way that ball is getting past him, and boy can he run!”
– Marianne, Bailey’s fur mama

And like most dogs, Bailey loves his food and is a dream when it comes to learning new tricks.

“When we are eating, he loves to nudge his nose into your thigh and look at you with his adorable eyes that just scream “Feed Me!”. But seeing as he is very much motivated by food, he’s very easy to train. He can spin around in circles, sit, lay down and even shake hands with his left and right paws!”
– Marianne, Bailey’s fur mama

lyka story bailey spoodle fresh dog food

A very involved member of his family, Bailey likes to howl sing when Marianne’s daughter, Jessica, plays the flute. He’s also a great security guard, regularly protecting his house and family from the courier in a yellow fluro jacket to any bird, possum or water dragon that dares to cross his path.

In between running into doors, playing hide and seek and even watching TV with his fur mama, Bailey is a very caring soul and loves to bombard his family with lots of cuddles and wet licky kisses.

“Whenever someone is feeling down or not well, Bailey is very receptive to this, and makes sure to show his love by sitting on your lap and putting his head on your chest. He is a very special boy.”
– Marianne, Bailey’s fur mama

So, why Lyka?

Bailey is a fussy dog and has a very sensitive stomach, so it was always extremely difficult for Marianne to find suitable food for him, and for Bailey to be able to eat and actually enjoy it. No matter what he ate, his poop was always soft and runny, and his tummy was always gurgly.

“I saw a video on Facebook where Lyka’s employees were eating the pet food and explaining that the food was of such high-quality that even humans could eat it – I was sold.”
– Marianne, Bailey’s fur mama

Visiting the website, Marianne was impressed by all of the nutritional ingredients found in each of the Lyka recipes and immediately placed an order.  

lyka story bailey spoodle fresh dog food

“I loved reading Lyka’s marketing material and discovering that the recipes were anti-inflammatory and great for Bailey’s heart, digestion, cell function and growth. I was keen to get him started as soon as possible, as he had suffered from an unsettled digestive system for a long time and always had soft and runny poop. I was getting so fed up, constantly having to change is food and adopt various diets but getting no results.”  
– Marianne, Bailey’s fur mama

Happier and healthier after finding Lyka

Marianne has only seen positive changes in Bailey since he started on Lyka, and she’s quickly become a devoted customer ever since his first box arrived on their doorstep.

“Since converting to Lyka, the change has been phenomenal. Bailey’s coat is soft and shiny, he is so much more energetic, and his sugar levels are balanced, so he’s not snappy and cranky. His poop is regular and more solid, and he’s in a very healthy weight range, receiving a big tick of approval from our local vet. Transitioning across to Lyka has honestly been the best decision I’ve ever made, and like Bailey, I look forward to our delivery every month!”
– Marianne, Bailey’s fur mama

lyka story bailey spoodle fresh dog food

Lyka: when good food means good poop and a happy pup

Lyka’s vet-approved recipes are complete and balanced for all life stages. Each ingredient has been carefully handpicked for its benefits to your pup. From improved digestion to solid poop, shiny coats, whiter teeth and bowls licked clean, our Lyka pack members are reporting significant changes in their furry friends.

Curious to see the difference a fresh food diet can make to the life of your pup? Order a Starter Box today and you could be our next Lyka Story!



dog groomer

How to choose the right dog groomer

If attempting to get your pup into the bathtub for an occasional wash generally ends up with you wetter than them and neither of you talking to the other, it might be time for a professional groomer. Finding the right groomer for your pet can involve a little work, though.

Here, we share some tips to help you find the right groomer for your dog, what to watch out for, and what you can expect for your money.

Do you need a dog groomer?

A professional groomer can give a dog’s coat a whole new lease on life, making it shiny and clean, as well as give it the right cut for the dog’s breed and season. However, some dogs – particularly those that grow hair rather than fur require grooming more than others.

If your dog is low-maintenance, short-haired and/or amenable to the occasional bathtime, there’s no reason you can’t keep your pup groomed at home.

If, however, you’re finding it difficult to keep your dog’s coat clean, tangle-free and the right length – or your pup is just feeling a little bit fancy – a professional groomer could be just what you need!

What does grooming involve?

Grooming a dog goes way beyond the odd bath – a groomer will brush, wash, remove matted fur, clip and dry your dog. They may also trim their nails, brush their teeth, clean their ears, and undertake other less than savoury tasks, like expressing anal glands.

Your groomer can also keep an eye out for any abnormalities whilst they’re caring for your dog, whether it’s bald patches of skin or unexpected lumps, and keep you aware of them.

Should I use a mobile or salon groomer?

Both options are good, but there are a few things to consider. For convenience, a mobile groomer wins hands down. They’re also ideal for dogs who aren’t great around other dogs, and dogs that get nervous if they’re in noisy environments.

On the other hand, a salon groomer will be cheaper, they may have better equipment, and since there will be multiple groomers on-site, they’ll have an extra set of hands to help with larger dogs or ones that require a little extra convincing.

What should I look out for in a groomer?

The best way to find a new groomer is to talk to other dog owners. If you see a pup that looks well-groomed, ask their owner where they take them. Your vet may also have some recommendations, and online reviews could prove useful.

Once you’ve got a shortlist, you can narrow it down by asking the right questions and observing. Here’s what to ask and look out for.

  • Ask what products the salon or mobile groomer uses on dogs. Make sure they’re high-quality, made for dogs and, if possible, all natural.
  • Check to ensure they have experience with your dog’s breed or coat-type.
  • Take a look around the salon to ensure it’s clean and comfortable, and that there’s appropriate crates or kennels in a well-ventilated spot for your dog to wait in.
  • Talk to staff and watch them in action: you want a calm dog-lover who will know how to put your dog at ease and treat them with gentle care.
  • Ask what level of grooming they’ll undertake (some might brush teeth, others may not) – it helps if you’re both on the same page
  • Professional dog groomers in Australia don’t need to hold any formal qualifications, but if they’re really serious there a several courses available. Check to see if they’ve undertaken any of them.
  • Ask the groomer about First Aid qualifications and liability insurance.
  • Ask any questions you want – if they’re professionals they’ll be happy to answer and glad to know what your expectations are.

Our tried and tested recommended groomers

Dogue
Various locations around Australia

Paw Republic
Crows Nest, NSW

Hollywoof
Bridgeport, Qld

Dolcey Grooming
Melbourne, VIC

Lyka: packed with essential nutrients

Part of caring for your dog’s skin and coat is ensuring they chow down on a properly balanced diet that contains lots of the right stuff: high-quality, bioavailable proteins, vitamins, minerals and omega 3s. Lyka’s nutritious, freshly cooked dog food is packed with all the things your pup needs to look and feel great from the inside out – why not try it and order a Starter Box today!



safe dog walking

How to keep your dog safe when out walking

On top of being a great way to bond, walking your pup gives them exercise, engagement and the opportunity for socialisation. As always, safety should be the top priority. To ensure it’s a positive experience each time those paws hit the pavement, consider the following tips to keep your dog safe when out walking:  

Know your dog

All dogs have different requirements. Puppies, some smaller breeds, senior dogs and dogs with health conditions, may only be able to tolerate very short walks. If your dog stops, sits or shows signs of fatigue during a walk, they have most likely had enough. Don’t forget that puppies still having their vaccinations may not be ‘walk-ready’, so ensure that they have completed their quarantine period first and always follow your vet’s advice when it comes to getting the greenlight to walk your puppy on the ground outside. If your vet has not advised that your pet is safe to walk on the ground, consider carrying them around during the socialisation period of 9-12 weeks to get them used to the sights and sounds of other people, cars and daily life.  

Use the right leash

When it comes to leashes, there isn’t a one size fits all. However, the leash should be 1-2m in length and sturdy. If you are training your dog, a shorter leash may be better initially to keep them close and safe. For long walks, a leash that you can wrap around your wrist can be more secure and to stop your hands from getting tired. Retractable leashes may be suitable for quick toilet breaks, but they are less sturdy and can be unsafe when in crowded areas, as your dog can get further away from you too easily, so we don’t generally support their use.  You may need to test out a couple of leashes before you find the right one. 

Pro tip: attach your poo bags in a little pouch to your leash, that way you’ll never leave them at home and be stuck in a bad situation! 

safe dog walking

Choosing when to walk your dog

Taking walks in off-peak periods can make walkies easier as you’re less likely to encounter distractions. However, remember the darker hours will mean poorer visibility. Other pedestrians and traffic won’t see you and your pup as easily. Clip-on leash lights and/or high-vis vests are a great idea to keep you both visible and safe.  

Hydration station

That is you! Even if you’re going on a short walk (and regardless of the weather), always bring a water supply. A good rule of paw is to offer your dog water whenever you’re thirsty. Collapsible bowls and doggy water bottles are easy to bring along to keep your dog hydrated.  When it comes to food, dogs are like us and need it as a source of energy – a good diet is essential for exercise and healthy movement, so be sure to feed your dog quality ingredients to keep them feeling full and energised.  

Protect your dog against the elements

Dogs with light fur or exposed skin can be susceptible to sunburn. Use dog sunscreen (never human sunscreen) and other sun protection gear including sun shirts, vests, dog visors and doggy goggles. On particularly hot days, test the temperature of the ground, including concrete and sand, by placing your hand on it. If you can’t keep it there for more than ten seconds, it’s not safe for your dog to walk on. In this case. dog booties can help to protect paws from heat and unwanted nasties like splinters, scratches or even outdoor allergies. During wet weather, there’s no need for a raincheck! Doggy raincoats and booties are great for keeping fur warm and dry. 

Parasite and toxin protection

Make sure your dog is completely up to date on their parasite prevention, especially if walking in areas with high flea or tick populations. Always search your dog for ticks after exercising, particularly in humid weather, even if they are on preventative medications, checking around their ears, under their tail, between their paws and around their eyes. This is a great habit to get into as it’s better to be safe than sorry! 

Spring and Summer are primetime for snakes, particularly red belly black snakes, so if you’re walking in wetlands or bushy areas, definitely keep your eyes peeled and keep your dog close. NEVER let your dog off in national parks, as they bait regularly with 1080 poison for foxes, which is almost 100% lethal if your dog were to ingest it. 

Nature safety

Always follow instructions in park areas and be mindful of local wildlife, especially breeding areas and where vulnerable species live. Dogs love to sniff and explore, and we don’t want to disturb any animals.   

Lyka: fresh food means more energy

Fresh food gives your dog the energy they need to walk, run and play. Lyka’s recipes contain powerful omega 3s to help your dog’s joints, whist the antioxidants and phytonutrients help to enhance their exploratory senses. Experience the difference for yourself – order a Starter Box today!



dog eats grass

Is there such a thing as too many greens? Why your dog eats grass

Have you noticed your pupper chewing grass? It is very common for dogs to do this, but you may be wondering why. Some people say that it’s unhealthy, but that may not be the case. There are many reasons why dogs graze and it is mostly a relatively harmless pastime.

Is it normal?

There is evidence to suggest that eating grass is innate as it is seen in wild dogs as well as domesticated dogs and pups. There’s a good chance your pupper is chewing on grass because they like the taste. Dogs are omnivores, so it is a natural part of their genetic makeup to crave greens.

Grass is high in fibre. If their diet is lacking in nutrients, it could be a way for them to access the roughage required to assist their digestion and to pass gas and stools. The best way to be sure your pupper is getting a complete and balanced diet is to curate a custom Lyka meal plan perfectly designed for your dog.

What should you look out for?

  • There is a belief that dogs sometimes eat grass to induce vomiting if they are feeling unwell. However, studies have shown a low incidence of vomiting with grass eating. Fewer than 25 percent of dogs vomit from eating grass and only 10 percent show signs of illness prior to eating grass, meaning most are not likely eating it because they’re sick.
  • If your pupper is chewing on large chunks of grass very quickly without chewing, this may induce vomiting.
  • Grass may have been sprayed with harmful herbicides and pesticides, so it is important to be aware where your favourite furry friend is getting their grass from. Take note of any council signage in parks that indicates recent spraying.
  • Grass can also contain parasites so make sure your dog is up to date with their worming medication.

What about other plants?

Who doesn’t love a pretty garden or indoor plant or two? Unfortunately, many plants and flowers can be toxic for dogs, so it is important to be mindful of the dangerous ones. If you like cut flowers in your home, there are plenty of safe options.

When should you see your vet?

  • If your pupper seems to be eating grass more frequently than usual or to excess, this can be a sign that they are trying to self-treat an illness. So, be on the watch for vomiting, diarrhoea, weight loss, decrease in appetite, blood in the stool, lethargy or excessive lip licking.
  • If you notice your dog habitually eats other non-food items, they may have a condition called pica. This condition is associated with nutritional deficiencies and a compulsion to eat things such as metal, plastic, cloth, garbage, dirt, rocks, paper and even faeces. This can be dangerous and may lead to bowel obstructions.
  • Excessive grass eating can be a sign of boredom or anxiety. It may be worth mentioning to your vet or dog trainer. You may even find that some extra stimulation and interactive toys can help.
  • Of course, if you think your dog has ingested a toxin, consult your vet as soon as possible.

Lyka: a great source of nutrition and fibre

All of Lyka’s recipes contain human-grade ingredients and offer a complete and balanced diet for your pup that is high in mixed-fermentable fibre. Dish up a bowl of Lyka and you can rest easy knowing that your pup is receiving enough roughage to keep them feeling their best. Order a Starter Box today and experience the Lyka difference.



dog-friendly campsites australia

Get out of town: Dog-friendly campsites in Australia

Are you dreaming of a city escape but don’t want to leave your best friend behind? Avoid the inquisitive ‘Where did you go without me?’ smell down and take your pup on a camping adventure complete with uninterrupted bonding and discovery. Before setting off, though, make sure your dog is up to date with parasite protection and check if you have to notify the campsite that you’ll be bringing them along.

Here are our top picks for dog-friendly campsites by state and territory across the country:

New South Wales

Nestled in the foothills of the Barrington Tops world heritage wilderness, Riverwood Downs Campsite redefines the term ‘pet friendly’. The camping grounds, caravan sites and cabins here all welcome intrepid pups and with 750 acres to explore on or off lead, you’ll be spoilt for choice. Whether you want to play ball on the manicured lawns, discover the walking trails, relax by the beautiful mountain river or even dine out with your pup at the Barrington Bar and Grill – there’s definitely something for everyone.

Set in Goolawah Regional Park near Crescent Head, Delicate Campgrounds is one of the few Northern NSW camping spots that welcomes dogs. For precious bonding time with your pup, enjoy a stroll on the off-leash beach or snuggle together up in your tent at night.

Queensland

Clancy’s Campground in Benarkin State Forest feels like a world away from the city. Clancy’s welcomes on-leash dogs and caters for a range of camping experiences from tents to caravans and motorhomes. Hike the forest trails, catch a fish for dinner or picnic on the large, open grassy area near Emu Creek – all while taking in the fresh scents of the eucalypt forest.

If you fancy beach camping with your pup, then Minjerribah Camping on idyllic North Stradbroke Island might just be the perfect place to pitch your tent – where stunning native forests meet kilometres of white sandy beaches. Flinders Beach and Main Beach camping areas are both dog friendly but can only be accessed by 4WD.

dog-friendly campsites australia

Australian Capital Territory

Just 45 minutes west of Canberra City, you’ll find the popular Blue Range Campground in Uriarra Forest. Although dogs aren’t allowed in Namadgi National Park, there are still plenty of recreational areas and trails nearby for you to explore together.

Victoria

Located in Gippsland Lakes Coastal Park, Paradise Beach Campground offers a coastal adventure that more than lives up to its name. With 12 unpowered sites for car-based camping, this super secluded paradise is perched between Lake Reeves and the ocean.  Access to the beach is easy, giving you and your pup more time to bound along the endless stretch of sand together. You can also give surf fishing a go and enjoy your catch back at the campgrounds under the shelter of a large rotunda.

Stay at Lerdergerg Campground for a truly immersive woodland experience that’s only a one-hour drive from Melbourne. Whether you prefer picnics or bushwalks, this campground is the ultimate treat for nature lovers. Pups are welcome to stay as long as they’re on the lead.

dog-friendly campsites australia

Tasmania

On the western side of Flinders Island, Allports Beach Camping Ground is the perfect escape for beach lovers. Pitch a tent or park the campervan on this unpowered campsite and then mosey down to the spectacular (and dog-friendly) Allports Beach. Once you’ve had a dip and worked up an appetite, fire up the gas BBQ (compliments of Parks and Wildlife) located at the eastern end of the beach. There’s also fresh rainwater for hand washing, but don’t forget to pack your own drinking water and firewood for those chilly nights.

Northern Territory

On the banks of the historic Little Roper River, Bitter Springs Cabins and Camping offers a quiet and peaceful bushland retreat for you to unwind from city life. An ideal base from which to explore the Never Never Region and Elsey National Park, the campground is a short walk to Biter Springs Thermal Pools and a 15-minute drive to the Mataranka Falls walking trail. You might even be lucky enough to spot the rare Red Goshawk that nest in the area.

Western Australia

Offering a variety of accommodation options, including cabins and safari tents, Bungle Bungle Caravan Park is an ideal escape for those who want to be immersed in the beautiful natural bush, but don’t want to completely relinquish their creature comforts. After a day of touring the unique Purnululu National Park by bus or helicopter, enjoy a glass of wine at the Bungle Caravan and relax by the fire pit under a blanket of stars.

A stay at Sues Bridge Campground in Blackwood River National Park will have you shedding that city stress in no time. With direct access to the river, it’s great for swimming, fishing or paddling with your pup. 2WDs won’t have trouble accessing this remote wilderness.

South Australia

On a working station in the Flinders Ranges, Bendleby Ranges Campsites caters for all kinds of adventurers. Need some solitude? Then set up camp on one of the private remote campsites surrounded by pristine bushland. Prefer to be closer to the amenities? No problem, there’s also a large campground near the camp kitchen. Pups are, of course, welcome as long as they’re kept on a leash.

Lyka: for pups living their best lives

Packed with powerful whole food ingredients, Lyka’s recipes are nutritionally complete and perfectly balanced for pups of all ages, giving them the energy they need to run, jump and play wherever your adventures may take them. Order your Starter Box today!



new dog

A guide to bringing your new dog home

The moment has arrived. You’ve found your perfect dog from a shelter or reputable breeder and now it’s time to start preparing your home for your newest furry family member. Bringing your new dog home is such an exciting moment, so to help make their arrival an easy and happy transition for all, we’ve pulled together a checklist to guide you through.

new dog

Bringing your dog home checklist:

  • Get an identification tag: In most states of Australia, ID tags for dogs are a legal requirement, not to mention good sense. Include your dog’s name, any serious medical conditions, your address and phone number, and securely attach the tag to your dog’s collar or harness.

  • Set up a dog bed: A bed for your dog will not only make them comfortable but also instil boundaries around where you want them to sleep. The bed needs to be warm and dry, and somewhere they feel protected and safe, away from any draughts that can enter under doors.

  • Have a food supply ready: One of the most important parts of bringing your new dog home, you’ll need two feeding bowls, one for food and one for water. For convenience, Lyka’s meals are delivered straight to your door, frozen for freshness. It’s good to have a mix of food and treats on hand to help your new pup settle in and to reward them for good behaviour and assist with training.

  • Prepare for toilet training: A bonus if your pup arrives completely toilet-trained, but if not, training pads will encourage your dog to go to the toilet in the right place. An enzymatic odour-neutralising spray is great for battling bad smells. Just don’t forget those poo bags for when you start going on walks. 

  • Stock up on a range of toys: Interactive toys are a great way to bond with your new family member. Puppies in particular, need high levels of engagement and a selection of toys (around 3-4) to provide mental stimulation and allow for appropriate chewing. Better the toy than the couch, we say!

  • Create a grooming kit: Good grooming ensures good hygiene and will keep your dog looking fancy. Your kit can include a brush, dog-friendly shampoo and conditioner and a dog-friendly toothbrush and toothpaste. No one wants smelly breath – not even your dog!

  • Prepare a health kit: Great to have on hand just in case – be sure to include de-worming and parasite treatments, as well as ear and eye cleaning drops.

  • Purchase pet insurance: Insurance is best purchased when your pet is young. We advise doing your own research to find the pet insurance that best suits your dog’s breed and lifestyle, as well as your financial situation, making sure that you will be covered for any unexpected events that may occur.

You’re nearly there! Just a few final considerations:

  • Visit the vet: Once you bring your dog home, schedule a visit to your vet. Take all information about any vaccinations your dog has had, as well as any parasite treatments. It’s also a great opportunity to discuss their diet and any behavioural or health concerns. A good vet will also do a full check and ensure your dog is microchipped.

  • Socialisation: Puppy socialisation is vital for learning and development, and can ultimately impact their behaviour and personality. Always take your vet’s advice regarding vaccinations, particularly before socialising with other dogs, and exposing them to different people and locations. Most socialisation can start at around 8-weeks old, but the critical development window is 9-12 weeks. Older dogs can still be socialised, but may need the help of a professional behaviourist.

  • Dog-proof your house: Puppies are notoriously adventurous and like to explore and chew. Keep any cleaning products, electricals and blind cords out of reach. Ensure plants or flowers in your house or garden are not toxic for your dog. Keep cupboards securely closed and move any toxic items including chocolate, chewing gum and ibuprofen to a place where your dog cannot access them. You don’t want to be making an emergency dash to the vet!

  • Training: It’s important to set up a good routine as soon as possible. This will allow your dog to learn what is and isn’t acceptable behaviour. Training your pup doesn’t need to be difficult, you will just need to start slowly and offer plenty of positive reinforcement. Puppy school (even for older dogs, which many schools offer) can be great to learn training techniques and set up positive behavioural patterns.
new dog

Lyka: made for all ages

Vet-approved, Lyka’s recipes are complete and balanced for all life stages, including puppies. We use whole food ingredients, quality protein and powerful superfoods to help keep your new pup in tip-top shape. Join the fresh dog food revolution and order a Starter Box today!



protein dogs

The lowdown on our protein and the benefits for your dog

Protein is not just for gym junkies, it also forms the building blocks of our puppers’ diet and at Lyka, we have a variety of recipes to tantalise all taste buds.

Why does my dog need protein?

In humans, protein is an essential macronutrient, and the same is true for our pups. Protein builds and repairs muscle, hair and skin cells, and plays a starring role in hormone production.

Your dog can get their protein from plant sources, but animal protein has a much higher level of amino acids. Amino acid deficiency can lead to serious health problems such as dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM).

How much protein does your dog need?

Over time, the pet food industry has seen the lines blurred between the minimal protein requirements of AAFCO, and the optimal amount of protein our dogs need to thrive, and the scientific evidence does not substantiate that lower protein diets are better.

To support the health and wellbeing of Australia dogs, our recipes at Lyka contain an optimal mix of high protein, moderate fat and low GI carbohydrates.

Our protein explained

We believe in offering a wide variety of protein choices, because some dogs have allergies or intolerances to certain proteins, and there’s also the matter of personal preference. With four protein choices on offer, we are proud to be able to cater to the many adorable pups out there!

protein dogs

Beef

Our grass-fed beef, ethically sourced in Queensland and WA, is a great choice to help your pupper thrive.

  • It contains high levels of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), a fatty acid with many benefits for your pupper.
  • It contains a lower omega 6:omega 3 ratio than grain-fed beef. An excess of omega 6s can cause chronic inflammation.
  • We also use beef heart, packed with Vitamin B12, which is crucial for enzyme function.
  • To boost your dog’s immunity and help with their vision, our recipes contain beef liver – one of the richest available sources of Vitamin A.

Chicken

Our chicken bowls contain lean, free-range chicken breast, which is also hormone and antibiotic-free. And let’s not forget the eggs, also packed with multiple benefits for our puppers.

  • High in iron, we also use chicken hearts in our recipes.
  • Our recipes contain a good serving of chicken liver, abundant in Vitamin A.
  • Our free-range eggs are high in choline, which is essential for brain function, and another great source of protein.

Turkey

Like our chicken, our barn-raised Hunter Valley turkey is hormone and antibiotic-free. Turkey has made waves in the human world for its many health-boosting properties and the same can be applied to your pupper’s diet.

Lamb

Your pupper may not have tried lamb in other food sources but it’s a delicious protein that can help your dog in many ways. As lamb is higher in fat, it might not be the best option if your dog has a sensitive tummy.

  • Bursting with iron, chowing down on our lamb recipe promotes healthy red blood cell development.
  • Lamb is rich in B-vitamins like niacin, which helps with healthy skin and energy.
  • Just like our other proteins, lamb’s liver is high in immunity-boosting Vitamin A.

Lyka: healthy food for your dog

Here at Lyka, we believe that whole ingredients, not just individual nutrients, matter – that’s why our recipes contain an abundance of fresh and purposeful vet-approved ingredients. With four recipes on offer, each are nutritious and delicious, and complete and balanced for all life stages. Discover first hand the benefits of high quality, biological-appropriate proteins in your dog’s diet – order a Starter Box today and say hello to the Lyka way!



dog food delivered

Lyka Story: dog food delivery gives Justin & Josie more time to play

As a massive dog lover, Rob was never without a furry friend in his life, having previously had three gorgeous Boxers. Coming into his life just over two years ago, Josie and Justin were siblings and were numbers four and five in Rob’s Boxer line-up.

“I have always been a dog lover (some say obsessed) but I fell in love with Boxers and their crazy, exuberant zest for life, clown-like behaviour and affectionate nature.” 

Justin & Josie’s fur papa, Rob

As for their names? Justin was named by his breeder before he found his new home with Rob, but Josie was named after, yes you guessed it – the old school cartoon, Josie & the Pussycats!

dog food delivery

Fun & games

For Rob, life is never dull with Boxers around. Justin and Josie are full of energy and always up to no good – in the best possible way!

“Justin is a big crazy goof ball, his energy level is extreme. He’s the biggest clown and a bit of a cuddle monster. He loves his ball and frisbee and will happily play all day. Josie on the other hand is a little doll, she’s very cheeky, very clever and very sensitive. She loves people, driving in the car and running away with my underwear and socks as I chase after her – it’s one of her favourite games.” 

Justin & Josie’s fur papa, Rob

Always up for a good time, Justin and Josie love the beach and love being involved in anything that Rob does. But most of all, they are always there for him as a companion during the good times and the bad.  

dog food delivery

All natural

Rob had always fed Justin and Josie a homemade natural diet and when it came to dog nutrition, he was a huge advocate for real quality food. However, this was a very time-consuming process that required a lot of effort and expense to ensure their nutritional needs were met.

“Living in a small town, I often had trouble sourcing a reliable supply of ingredients that I needed. Sometimes I would travel two hours a week to two different towns just to source the ingredients I needed to make their food.” 

Justin & Josie’s fur papa, Rob

dog food delivery


Whilst Rob was always happy to do this for Justin and Josie, he knew there had to be an easier way, and that’s where Lyka came into their lives. 

Convenient & nutritious – the discovery of Lyka

Rob researched and looked at a number of fresh pet food delivery services, but finding one that was suitable and also delivered to the regional area where he lived really limited his options.

“Lyka seemed like a good fit from the start as I came across so many amazing reviews and it looked very similar to the style of food that I was already making for Justin and Josie. So, I got in touch with Lyka’s Customer Care team – I must’ve sent them about fifteen emails and asked one hundred questions about their food, the ingredients and their cooking process, I really did put the team to the test.  But, very happy with their responses and unable to fault their service, I took the plunge and placed my first order.”  

Justin & Josie’s fur papa, Rob

dog food delivery


Rob could see the Lyka difference from the moment his first box landed on his doorstep. 

“When the food arrived, I could see how how fresh it was, how good it smelled. I could see that it was real food with quality ingredients.” 

Justin & Josie’s fur papa, Rob

As with all new Lyka customers, Rob was given a jar of transition powder, a probiotic aimed to help settle the gut during the changeover to a new diet. Incredibly though, Justin and Josie didn’t need time to adjust, having eaten fresh, natural food for at least two years. For them, transitioning onto Lyka was a dream.  

“We bypassed the transition period without any issue at all and we have never looked back. Justin and Josie absolutely love their Lyka meals, and I love the time, effort and expense it has saved me in the kitchen. The convenience of having their meals delivered has given me more time to spend with them doing things they love, it’s great!”  

Justin & Josie’s fur papa, Rob

dog food delivery

Living the life on Lyka

Justin and Josie had been very healthy dogs prior to starting their Lyka journey, having been fed a fresh, natural diet for a number of years (lucky things!) but Lyka’s recipes have just given them an extra boost to help them maintain great overall health. 

“They do seem to like their Lyka more than what I used to make them (how rude!) and their coats are so shiny and soft, we have no skin issues, no digestive issues and their poos are always awesome. They’re honestly bright, happy and healthy all thanks to Lyka.” 

Justin & Josie’s fur papa, Rob

dog food delivery


Even their vet was impressed.  

“I recently took them to the vet for a routine check-up and the vet commented on what superb condition they were in and even asked what I was feeding them. I answered, “real food – Lyka” as there is no doubt in my mind that real food like Lyka, helps to improve the health, happiness, vitality and longevity of our dogs’ lives.” 

Justin & Josie’s fur papa, Rob

Impressed with his Lyka experience, Rob has even convinced some of his friends to make the move across to Lyka – what a customer!

“I love what Lyka is doing, so much so that I’ve now managed to convince four other friends to change their dogs’ diet from nasty highly processed kibble over to real food. We are all enjoying what Lyka is doing for our dogs and we are always commenting on how amazing it is.”

Justin & Josie’s fur papa, Rob 

dog food delivery

Craving convenience?

We are passionate about dog nutrition and giving pups the chance to live their happiest, healthiest lives. But, we think you should be living yours, too. Our convenient direct-to-door subscription service allows you to customise your meal plan and delivery dates to suit you, with the ability to pause and cancel at anytime with ease. Life can be tough – feeding your dog shouldn’t be. Order a Starter Box today and experience the Lyka difference for yourself!  



dog barking

How to stop your dog going barking mad

We all know that barking is one of the main forms of communication for our puppers, but when the anonymous notes start pouring into your letterbox, you know it’s time to tackle the noise issue.

Why is your dog barking?

Barking is completely normal for all dogs, however some breeds are more vocal than others. It can be a response to other people and animals, being territorial, or being stimulated by noise, and sometimes it can become excessive.

Problem barking can be caused by many things, and to find a solution you’ll need to dig deep into the reason your dog is being so outspoken. Some of the common issues are:

  • Fear – your pupper reacts to the loud vacuum or has taken a deep dislike to next door’s cat. 
  • Separation anxiety – being left home alone or even in another room can set your furry friend off into a barking frenzy.
  • Territorial behaviour – the knock at your door sends your placid pooch into a yapping nightmare.
  • Boredom – too much time on their hands (ahem, paws!) and even the best behaved pupper can resort to calling out.
  • Pain – is a recent accident or illness making your dog howl in pain?
  • Attention seeking – if they can’t get your attention, they’ll bark until you start playing with them.

How can you help your barking dog?

A barking pupper can range from annoying to downright distressing, and is one of the most common reasons for noise complaints to councils. Once you’ve worked out what is triggering your pup you can try to fix the problem.

  • Desensitisation

If fear is at the heart of your pupper’s problem barking, try to desensitise them to the stimulus. Switch the blender on for a short period, get the vacuum out for a couple of minutes and gradually expose your pup to their trigger. You’ll need to work slowly to manage your dog’s fear and use plenty of positive reinforcement.

If you see any early signs of stress, you may need to slow things down and consult with your vet.

  • Managing anxiety

Check with your neighbours to see if your dog is barking excessively while you are away. You could even set up a pup cam to see what’s going on and work out if there are any times of day that are worse for your dog – some cameras even throw treats to help keep your pup calm and happy!

When you establish that separation is your pupper’s cue for barking, you’ll need a sensitive plan to deal with this very real anxiety.  It’s best to talk to your vet to work out a strategy for alone time.

Consider doggy daycare, a pet sitter, or a dog walker for those times when you can’t be home and your pupper is adjusting to being without you.

  • Rewarding the right behaviours

You’ll need to use your best poker face when standing up to your very cute attention-seeking dog. As much as it’s difficult, ignore them for as long as possible and reward them as soon as they stop barking. Quiet equals a delicious reward.

Lengthen the amount of time that they must remain quiet before getting a treat so that they learn to be quiet for a longer period.

  • Managing boredom

Make sure you have plenty of activities on hand so that boredom is not an issue. This could range from puzzle toys to putting their favourite Lyka recipe in a slow feeding bowl or on an interactive mat. Five minutes of obedience training can work wonders to ease boredom.

If lack of exercise is a problem, try making their daily walk a little bit more challenging. A tired satisfied pupper is less likely to be a vocal pupper.

  • Distraction

You can distract territorial barkers from their perceived threat. Perhaps it’s the postie knocking? Make sure you have a favourite toy at the door. You can also train your dog to go to a comfortable spot and stay there when somebody comes to your house.

Anything that we don’t recommend?

  • Anti-barking collars

Anti-barking collars give off an ultrasonic noise when a dog barks. They may seem like the perfect quick fix but are not usually effective. They are not designed to stay on for long and our clever pets quickly learn to start barking as soon as the collar is off.

  • Surgical debarking

Surgery is available to remove some of your dog’s vocal chords to soften their bark. This is very distressing for your pet and is even illegal in many parts of Europe and the USA.

  • Shouting at your dog

Punishments have no place in solving behavioural problems like excessive barking. Whilst barking can be extremely frustrating, keeping your cool is the best way to quickly solve the problem.

Where can you get more help?

Don’t despair if you can’t manage the barking by yourself; many of us don’t seek help until a behaviour in our pet is well ingrained and more difficult to fix. But there are plenty of other resources you can turn to.

  • Your vet

It’s time to visit your vet if you’ve tried everything and it’s not working or you think that the barking is caused by illness or separation anxiety.

Give your vet as much information as you can about triggers or patterns that you’ve noticed. They may refer you to a behaviourist if needed.

  • A holistic vet

Alternative medicine is not only for humans. Many have great success with their pupper’s behaviour and general well-being after seeing a holistic vet.

Holistic vets can look for solutions through nutrition, medicinal cannabis, gut-brain axis issues, supplements and herbal medicines, lessening the use of pharmaceutical medications. 

  • Diet investigation

We’ve had amazing feedback about the difference in mood and behaviour when customers have moved their pups onto a low glycaemic index (GI) diet.

Ever watched an out-of-control bunch of toddlers after devouring a high GI birthday cake? The same theory rings true for our furry friends.

Check out the Pure Animal Podcast series with our co-founder, Dr. Matthew Muir, for a fascinating lowdown on the links between your dog’s diet and their behaviour. It’s certainly food for thought.

Curious about how Lyka can help your pup?

Join the fresh dog food revolution – order a customised Starter Box today and experience the Lyka difference for yourself!



dog sofa behaviour

Battle of the Sofa: The Dog Edition

There’s nothing better than coming home at the end of a long day and plonking yourself down on the sofa and binging on the latest Netflix series. But, what if your favourite spot becomes your dog’s favourite spot – should you even let your dog on the sofa in the first place?  

Speaking of sofas, we recently collaborated with Eva Home for an exclusive giveaway for the launch of their dog-friendly All Day Sofa. That’s right, a sofa made especially to withstand the wear and tear of daily life PLUS the wear and tear inflicted by your dog’s nails, hair and drool – all the things that can impact the longevity of your sofa.  Available as 2 or 3-seater, the sofa is sustainably made from 100% recycled plastic bottles, is easy to assemble and super chic. Tick, tick, tick.  

dog sofa behaviour

So, should your dog be given sofa privileges?

Letting your dog on the sofa is a battle faced by many pet owners. It often involves some old towels and some bickering with your partner, but eventually ends in your favourite furry friend taking prime position cuddling up next to you on the sofa whilst you contort yourself to make sure they’re comfy – minus those old towels, of course. 

We all do it, because how can we say no to those cute little beady eyes that stare deep into your soul when you’ve just gotten home from work, you’re exhausted and you need a little snuggle buddy.  

Setting the ground rules

It’s often believed that by giving your dog sofa privileges, it will instantly make them think they’re in charge and rule the roost in your house, but it’s just not the case.  

Founder of Bondi Behaviourist, Ian Shivers, says,

“We love seeing dogs being a part of the family, but we REALLY love to see family’s set their dogs up for success with clear communication patterns and consistent situations.” 

Remember, you make the rules and you call the shots, and there is absolutely no reason why your dog can’t happily share the sofa with you. You just need to be careful not to encourage any bad behaviour like snapping, growling, digging or chewing – or jumping on someone else’s sofa if you’re visiting friends or family, now that can be a bit awkward. 
 
When: You need to decide when you give your dog access to the sofa – is it all the time, even when you’re not home, is it at certain times of the day, or just when you give permission. You also need to be mindful when having friends over, as you may not want your dog jumping on the sofa whilst guests are sitting there.  

What: If you have multiple sofas or areas to sit, you must also decide which sofa they are allowed on. This can be encouraged with firm training and some delicious rewards – a cheeky spoonful of your dog’s favourite Lyka recipe is always a good incentive. You also need to train your dog to not jump on the sofa if they are visiting other homes – once again, reward and encourage good behaviour.  

Behavioural training 101

If you’re going to allow your dog on the sofa, which we are obviously all in favour of here at Lyka, then it’s only fair to the dog and to the whole family, to establish some clear communication skills surrounding the times your furry friend is allowed to kick back and get comfy.   

“Have a conversation with the whole family and understand everyone’s preferences and dislikes. Be clear when your dog is allowed up on the sofa, on which one, at what end and whether or not you want them to use a blanket or simply have free reign over the whole thing,” 

Ian Shivers, Bondi Behaviourist

Consistency in behaviour is key and the whole family needs to be on board and in agreement with the rules put in place, as your dog will get very confused if you only let them up at night whilst watching MAFS, and the rest of the family invites them up for an early morning snuggle sesh. 

“If some members of the family are not following through with the agreement, it is most important to revisit the conversation with the family rather than blaming the dog. The dog is only going to do what has been taught. Inconsistencies often lead to frustration from other family members and this is where people can all too often unfairly reprimand the dog,” 

Ian Shivers, Bondi Behaviourist

Check out this video where Ian Shivers provides further advice on giving your dog sofa privileges.

dog sofa behaviour

Getting comfy

Snuggling up to your dog is one of the best parts about owning a dog, but what do you do if your furry friend is suffering a serious case of bad breath and can’t stop farting?  

Bad smells are generally linked to your dog’s diet. To ensure you and your dog have a lovely cosy time together on the sofa, we advise reassessing what is going into your dog’s bowl. Lyka’s natural dog food recipes are healthy and balanced for all life stages. They contain optimal ratios of Omega 3s and 6s, along with a beneficial serving of superfoods and ancient grains, to help your dog live their best possible life. 

What about wear and tear?

This is unfortunately almost a given when choosing to give your dog sofa privileges. So, we advise getting a sofa that has durable fabric and removable, washable covers. You can also invest in a bottle of Scotchgard and some sturdy throws that your dog can snuggle into to help give your couch the best chance at survival.  
 
Dogs love to chew and play, so for dogs that are determined to destroy the sofa, try these handy tips: 

  • Establish a routine and keep your dog active by taking them for a walk each day to work off excess energy 
  • Instill good behaviour by rewarding them when obeying commands like “up” and “down” 
  • Provide them with a comfortable and appealing alternative place to sleep 
  • Avoid your dog being bored or suffering from separation anxiety by giving them a variety of chew and enrichment toys  
  • Hire a behaviourist if the situation doesn’t improve 

Relax and chow with Lyka

There’s nothing better than cosying up on the sofa with your favourite food and a good movie. Let your adorable pup experience life’s simple pleasures, order a custom Starter Box today and get ready for some serious chow and sofa time!



kelp dog

Kelp: a rich source of natural vitamins and minerals for your dog

Along with being a fun thing to fling at your friends at the beach, kelp is actually great for your pupper!  

Jam-packed full of natural vitamins and minerals that are highly beneficial to your pup’s health, kelp is one of the best sources of iodine, which is essential for thyroid hormone production. All vertebrate animals require this hormone to sustain life.1 This good old seaweed is also a great way to ensure your pup gets plenty of other goodies such as Vitamin K, magnesium and proteins and amino acids.  


Our kelp is sourced from King Island in Tasmania. To ensure ocean supplies are preserved we only harvest kelp that has been deposited on the rocks and beaches around the island. 

DID YOU KNOW? 
The more robust a kelp forest is in the ocean, the more it can help to stop climate change due to it absorbing large amounts of carbon dioxide. 

The heroes of kelp

Iodine 
The rich iodine content in kelp is the main reason this ingredient is included our recipes. This unique form of seaweed helps to regulate and stabilise your dog’s glandular system, including adrenal, pituitary and thyroid. It also speeds up their metabolism and weight loss. Low levels of iodine in your dog’s diet can contribute to the onset of hypothyroidism.

Vitamin K 
Kelp is a great source of vitamin K which is needed for blood to clot. An essential if your pup suffers from a cut or graze. Vitamin K deficiency causes excessive bleeding2 so it is important that your dog’s diet includes this clever clotting vitamin. 

Magnesium and protein 
Magnesium is an essential mineral that safeguards your pupper’s heart function, energy, and nervous system. Whilst protein is a very important part of a healthy, balanced canine diet. To create new skin cells, grow hair and build muscle tissue it is essential your furry friend has an adequate intake of proteins and amino acids. Kelp has all these vital nutrients so is a great one, stop shop. 

Why kelp is good for your dog’s thyroid

It is common for dogs to suffer from Hypothyroidism. This condition is associated with lethargy and weight gain. It can also cause their fur to fall out and lead to skin diseases and even cancer. Being a rich source of iodine, kelp is a healthy and effective ingredient to help your dog’s thyroid function at an optimal level.  

Why kelp is good for your dog’s skin

A natural powerhouse when it comes to your skin, kelp contains many antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties to help reduce inflammation, redness and irritation caused by skin conditions and environmental factors.   

You can find kelp in our Beef, Lamb, Chicken and Turkey Recipes

Lyka: tasty and nutritious for your furry friend

All of our human-grade ingredients are powerful and purposeful, and chosen for their benefits to your pup. Order a Starter Box today and experience the benefits of a fresh food diet first-hand. Mealtime has never looked or tasted so good! 



dog brushing teeth

A guide to brushing your dog’s teeth

We know how important it is to brush our own teeth everyday, so it makes sense that your dog’s teeth need regular brushing to maintain their dental health, too. In fact, 80% of dogs show signs of dental disease by the time they’re only 3 years old, so it’s key to look after their teeth before more serious problems arise.

Why is brushing your dog’s teeth important?

There’s more than just a smile at stake when it comes to keeping your dog’s teeth in good condition. Regular brushing removes plaque, which may have formed in their mouth after eating. This helps to prevent calculus build-up that causes gingivitis. Gingivitis is the first stage of periodontal disease, so regular brushing will keep the risk of disease at bay. Your dog’s oral health also affects their whole body, not just their teeth. Mouth bacteria can travel through your dog’s bloodstream and eventually affect their vital organs. Certain breeds, especially smaller dogs like chihuahuas, are more susceptible to dental disease as they have more teeth crowded into their mouth, so dental care is especially important for them.

Which toothpaste is safe for dogs?

First things first – dogs need their own specially made toothpaste. Not only does dog toothpaste taste better for your pooch -we’re talking chicken and beef flavour – but human toothpaste contains ingredients that need to be spat out, something that your pup doesn’t know how to do! Be sure to choose an enzyme-based toothpaste, being mindful of any ingredients that your pet reacts to.

dog brushing teeth

How to brush your dog’s teeth

Our in-house Integrative Vet, Dr. Matthew Muir, recommends brushing everyday, or at least 3 times a week in order to keep your dog’s chompers fresh and sparkling clean.  Here’s his step-by-step guide to successful dog teeth cleaning:

  1. Choose a quiet time and place where both you and your dog are relaxed and won’t be rushing. Dr. Matthew Muir is a huge advocate of Tellington TTOUCH Massage, where experiences like teeth brushing can be a chance to bond with your dog and get them seeing their dental sessions as pamper time and something to look forward to.
  2. If your dog is small enough, hold them in your lap, otherwise have your dog sit next to you in a spot that’s comfortable for the both of you.  
  3. Slowly get your dog used to you being near their mouth. You can start by gently rubbing a finger over their mouth and teeth in short bursts until they’re used to the contact.

    If you’re having trouble acclimating them to your touch, try dipping your finger in some beef broth, so they have a positive association with the experience. Be aware though, if your dog has any history of aggression, you should always seek veterinary advice and ideally, a veterinary behaviourist before attempting this. We don’t want any nasty accidents!
  4. Next, try covering your finger with gauze or a soft cloth to get your dog used to a texture that is similar to that of a toothbrush.
  5. Then, add a little of the toothpaste to your finger or the cloth to help your pup get used to the taste.
  6. Once you and your dog are ready, you can begin using a toothbrush with the toothpaste, starting with the front teeth and slowly working your way back as your dog gets more comfortable.
  7. And finally – positive reinforcement! Encourage your dog and reward good behaviour, this will help to make teeth cleaning fun and not a scary experience for your dog.

What if your dog refuses to have their teeth brushed?

If you’ve tried all of the steps above but still aren’t having any luck getting your dog to cooperate, it may be time to speak with your vet or a behaviourist, who can give you more specific advice.

What else can you do to improve your dog’s dental health?

Introducing chewing aids, like preservative-free pizzle sticks or kelp supplements will help to keep your dog’s teeth clean and their breath fresh. Dr. Matthew Muir prefers these to Nylabones or deer antlers, which have a risk of fracturing your dog’s teeth.

dog brushing teeth

How your dog’s diet can affect their teeth

The very best thing you can do for your pupper’s oral health is to combine regular brushing and chewing aids or bones with complete and balanced fresh food

Kibble isn’t the answer here! Because kibble is hard, you may think that it’s good for your dog’s teeth, but this just isn’t the case. The high carbohydrate levels in kibble quickly form a film over your pup’s teeth, which eventually converts to sugar and causes plaque. Saying that kibble cleans teeth is like saying that crackers clean our teeth! 

Scientific evidence has debunked the idea that the crunch in kibble is good for teeth. The only varieties can may help your dog’s oral health are prescription-based, which contain specialised fibres. Dr. Matthew Muir finds that whilst these products can help with teeth, they are not always associated with holistic health for the dog due to their high levels of Omega 6s and low Omega 3 content and glycemic load.

Lyka: great for your pup, teeth to toe

Lyka’s recipes are low in carbohydrates, which means there is less plaque build-up. So, not only are our recipes food tasty, but it also helps to promote natural production of saliva, which is rich in enzymes and antimicrobial agents. In addition, our recipes are rich in Ascophyllum nodosum, a kelp, which science shows us helps to improve the saliva’s ability to fight off bacteria. Start your pup’s good dental health journey and order a Starter Box today!



dog-friendly accommodation south australia

Holiday mode on: Best dog-friendly stays in South Australia

Live in Adelaide and craving a staycation with your pup? Or are you road tripping around the country and adding South Australia to your bucket list? Whatever kind of escape you’re planning, we’ve got your sleeping situation sorted. From inner city apartments to B&Bs and luxury homes, we’ve pulled together our top picks in the City of Churches that will delight you and your furry friend – especially those that include some extra perks for your furry travelling companion!

Luxe Haus

12 Maidencombe Dr, Moana SA 5169
50 minutes from Adelaide CBD

Enter through the keyless door and be prepared to lose your breath. Definitely on the pricier side of things, but worth every penny, Luxe Haus is a vision. You and your dogs (these guys allow up to two) will enjoy moving throughout the three fancy levels via a glass elevator, as well as kicking back and relaxing whilst overlooking the Fleurieu Coast, and taking the kayaks and paddle boards out for an early morning adventure. There’s even a 20-person heated spa, a baby grand piano, a Gaggenau coffee machine for all those caffeine lovers, underfloor heating and seven – we repeat, seven – drop-down TVs that each have access to Netflix and Stan. You better start planning how you can extend your stay because you’re not going to want to leave!

Athelney Cottage B&B

7 Athelney Ave, Hackney SA 5069
10 minutes from Adelaide CBD

Located just a stone’s throw away from Rundle Mall and the centre of Adelaide, Athelney Cottage crazily feels tucked away from the hustle and bustle. This cosy French-inspired bed and breakfast offers a choice between a full cottage with plenty of room for kids and pets, or an executive suite for an even more luxe experience. Both rooms are pet-friendly and allow you to bring up to 2 dogs during your stay. 
Athelney Cottage is also within walking distance from Adelaide Zoo, the Adelaide Botanic Gardens and the National Wine Centre, so whether you’re relaxing on the plush sofa, or taking in the sights, Athelney Cottage couldn’t be more comfortable or convenient. 

House at Normanville

22 Union Rd, Normanville SA 5204
1 hour and 20 minutes from Adelaide CBD

Light, bright and spacious, this two-storey House at Normanville is a no brainer if you’re looking to escape the daily grind for a few days. With a large backyard that backs onto a green grassy paddock, your dog will have the chance to get up close and personal with four-legged friends of another kind – horses! Just a short stroll from trendy cafes and a golf course, and a short drive from the beach, you’ll never be short of things to see, do and eat. Feel like staying in? The all-seasons deck is a great place to kick back and relax – you may even spot some native birds, foxes and rabbits, so be sure to keep your eye out. For the foodies out there, the kitchen comes fully equipped with everything you need to cook up a storm – there’s even a Nespresso coffee machine when you need a jolt to get up for those early morning sunrises! 

Swainson Apartments

Multiple locations

With convenient locations all around central Adelaide, Swainson Apartments offer lots of choices for dog-friendly stays – all of which will have the city right on your doorstep. The apartments are fully serviced, and they have convenient locations near Adelaide Oval, the Adelaide Entertainment Centre and Glenelg Beach, so you and your dog can soak up the great outdoors – perfect if your pup likes exploring as much as you do!

The Adelaide Inn

160 O’Connell St, North Adelaide SA 5006
12 minutes from Adelaide CBD

This North Adelaide hotel knows how to treat guests right, whether they have two or four legs. For human guests, there’s an outdoor pool and spa area to enjoy, as well as their famous Fox Restaurant, which serves up delicious Modern Australian cuisine.

To ensure you secure a Studio Family Courtyard room with outside access, make sure to let them know your dog is joining you. They’ll even provide a water bowl and treats to make your dog feel right at home!

Hilton Adelaide Hotel

233 Victoria Square, Adelaide SA 5000
Middle of Adelaide CBD

As you’d expect, the Hilton Hotel in Adelaide offers up all the amenities you could want or need when on vacay. The bespoke guest bedrooms, deluxe rooms and suites are all dog-friendly. There’s also a fitness centre, tennis service, an outdoor pool, as well as a chic 1920s-inspired restaurant that is home to a cellar filled with over 500 wine labels. The hotel is about as central as you can get, located right next to the Adelaide Central Market in the heart of the CBD – so get ready to work that plastic!

Coonawarra Bush Holiday Park

242 Comaum School Road, Coonawarra SA 5263
4 hours from Adelaide CBD

Touted as a “wine-derful” place to stay, Coonawarra Bush Holiday Park is the ideal place to switch your phone onto Airplane Mode, take a break from the daily grind and enjoy nature with your furry friend – glass in hand, of course. With both powered and unpowered sites available, you can park your caravan or set up a campsite and live the simple life for a few days. Don’t have either of those? The holiday park has cabins and ensuite cabins, with something to suit all budgets. For the ultimate bush experience though, you can’t go past glamping, with luxury bell tents set up across the property. For something totally unique, book a Hex Bubble. Made of durable clear plastic, the bubbles offer 360-degree views, as well as air con and heating, making them ideal for all seasons. There’s even a hand basin so you don’t need to leave your tent to brush your teeth. These guys are pet-friendly, just don’t forget to bring your dog’s bed!

Now delivering to Adelaide

Lyka’s human-grade recipes contain delicious whole food ingredients that are sure to get your pup’s tail wagging and have them looking and feeling their best. With a customisable approach for every pupper, our Starter Box is a great way to taste test the difference and experience the changes firsthand. We are also very excited to now be delivering to pups in Adelaide. So, what are you waiting for – order today and experience the Lyka life for yourself!



best dog movies

A round-up of the best dog movies

The Oscars and the dazzling awards season may be over for another year, but that doesn’t mean that the fun should stop here. We’ve compiled a list of the Lyka team’s favourite dog movies (and some fun facts!) to help keep that film spirit alive and help you out when you just can’t decide what to watch on Netflix. Let’s meet the contenders!

Marley & Me

best dog movies marley & me

If ever a dog movie had heart, this is it. In case there was any doubt about the credentials of this labour of love, over 22 dogs contributed performances to playing Marley at all his ages and stages. And while the fictional Marley may have been a terror, the real life canine actors were incredibly well trained. Whenever the movie had a scene of Marley licking something, baby food was used to entice the dog. Owen Wilson’s real parents even played his fictional mother and father in the movie to add to the heart-warming nature of this whole film. Get the tissues ready, trust us – you might need the whole box!

Air Bud

best dog movies air bud

Potentially a big part of the reason why Golden Retrievers are so beloved, this 1997 film about a pup named Buddy, who took to the basketball court because there was nothing in the rule book that said he couldn’t, delights little and big kids alike. The talented dog who played Buddy also appeared in Full House as Comet, and the film was so popular it spawned a film franchise to rival Marvel; Buddy’s now been a “golden receiver” on the football field in the Air Bud sequel, a soccer star in World Pup and even been to space in Air Buddies!

Old Yeller

This was the first non-animated Disney film to ever get the honour of being preserved in the National Film Registry in the Library of Congress for being ‘culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant’, and it’s definitely cemented its place in pop culture. It even made it into a Friends episode –  ‘The One Where Old Yeller Dies’. Phoebe says her mother always turned off the movie before the infamous sad scene, and she finally sees the ending for the first time, to devastating effect – if you know, you know.

Fun Fact: the wolf who fights Old Yeller wasn’t actually a wolf: it was a German Shepherd who they made to look like a wolf. The dogs were trained to play fight whilst muzzled so that they wouldn’t get hurt during the dramatic scene.

101 Dalmatians

best dog movies 101 dalmatians

The author of 101 Dalmations was inspired by her own pets, she had 9 Dalmatians of her own! The idea for the book came one day when a friend remarked “Those dogs would make a lovely fur coat”, and the idea for the villainous Cruella DeVil was born. The Disney animated version was a departure for Walt Disney, with its much more sophisticated mid-century illustrations and highly stylised human characters that resembled their puppy pals to a tee. 

But perhaps the most iconic version is the live action remake with Glenn Close as the high-fashion grotesque, Cruella. With her monochrome costume and wicked puppy plans, she almost stole the show from the scores of real Dalmatian puppies. Almost.

John Wick

Keanu Reeves’ cult action thriller series, John Wick, is as well known for its beloved pooch storyline as it is for its impeccably choreographed fight scenes. 

In the first draft of the script, the dog was meant to be 18 years old and a gift from John Wick’s dying wife. In the final version of the film though, the dog is an adorable Beagle puppy, and Wick’s only friend, with his revenge plot fueled by the dog’s tragic fate. We’re still crying.

Lady and the Tramp

best dog movies lady and the tramp

Another Disney movie in the cannon that can’t be overlooked! You probably remember the iconic spaghetti eating scene when you think back to this movie, but did you know Walt Disney originally didn’t want to include the scene? Fortunately, better animation heads prevailed and the romantic back alley doggy date lived to be included in the final cut. 

The film’s opening sequence, with Darling opening the hat box to find Lady inside, is based on a real story, where Walt Disney forgot about a date night with his wife so surprised her with a puppy in a hat box and all was forgiven. That’s certainly one way to do it!

Lassie

Perhaps the most quintessential dog film there is, every subsequent Lassie movie features a dog directly descended from the original dog who played the role. In real life, ‘Lassie’ was named Pal, and clearly birthed a Hollywood dynasty with generations of Rough Collies winning over kids’ hearts ever since.

Isle of Dogs

best dog movies isle of dogs

This Wes Anderson stop-motion film was released in 2018, the Year of the Dog in the Chinese Zodiac. Visually dazzling, with Anderson favourites like Bill Murray and Jeff Goldblum, lending their voices to the titular dogs, the film is in both English and Japanese and plays around with the idea of language in the tale of dogs banished to an island following an outbreak of dog flu. Even the title, ‘Isle of Dogs’ is a play on words of ‘I Love Dogs’.

Benji

An old classic inspired by Lady & the Tramp, the movie’s director initially had to create a production company just to get the movie off the ground. The movie ended up being a huge success, raking in more than $45 million USD at the box office when it was released in 1974 – off just a $500,000 budget. And the star of the film? The leading dog was found in an animal shelter, completing the Cinderella story to perfection.

Togo

This movie tells the true story of a dog named Togo who led a dangerous sled journey to deliver diphtheria vaccines to a town hit by an outbreak in 1925. Truly a heroic pooch, Togo was named by Time Magazine as ‘The Most Heroic Animal of All Time’ in 2011 as a testament to his incredible lifesaving journey. The dog’s owner, Leonhard Seppala was known for his extremely humane way of treating his dogs, which was uncommon at the time.

So, which is your fave? Did yours make the list?

Movie time = Chow time

There’s nothing better than a cosy night in, especially when the weather is cold, so why not order your best furry friend a custom Starter Box and pencil in a movie night whilst you both chow down on your favourite food!



dog safe flowers

Your guide to dog-safe flowers for Mother’s Day

With Mother’s Day fast approaching, you might be wondering what to get the special fur mama in your life. Flowers are always a fool-proof choice. But, as a dog owner, have you ever wondered which flowers are actually safe for your dog?

Which flowers are safe for dogs?

Just because you have a four-legged friend that likes to taste test anything new in the home doesn’t mean that your flowers need to be bland and boring – in fact, it’s quite the opposite. We’ve pulled together some of the prettiest and safest options for your dog:

  • Alstroemeria
  • Asters
  • Camelia
  • Celosia
  • Cornflower
  • Lavender (Note: Whilst lavender is safe for dogs, concentrated lavender oil isn’t – it needs to be properly diluted if being using near your dog.
  • Marigolds
  • Orchid
  • Rose
  • Snapdragon
  • Sunflower
  • Zinnia

So, which flowers are toxic to dogs?

Unfortunately, there are many flowers and plants that are toxic to dogs – even the most popular flowers for Mother’s Day, Carnations and Chrysanthemums. So, before you go sending off a floral arrangement to your pet-owning loved ones, you may want to check which flowers will be included first – we don’t want any emergency trips to the vet!

Some common flowers that are toxic to dogs include:

  • Azalea
  • Carnation
  • Chrysanthemum
  • Daffodil
  • Lily
  • Peony
  • Tulip

If you suspect that your dog has eaten a dangerous flower or plant, take them to see a vet immediately, and bring along a sample or photo – this will help them treat your dog as quickly as possible.

Buying flowers? Support local

As an Aussie made and owned start-up, we are passionate about supporting local and shopping small. For Mother’s Day this year, we have teamed up with our talented friends next door here at our Sydney HQ – Floraly – to help you gift the special fur mamas in your life.

Floraly
is a floristry service delivering beautiful bouquets straight to doors around Australia. Like us, they are shaking up their industry. To avoid waste, they only source their flowers after you’ve ordered them – genius. Because, did you know? 1 in 3 flowers destined for a florist will die before being bought. Floraly’s approach means that no flowers needlessly go to waste and it means that you get fresher, longer-lasting flowers. Floraly also gives back by supporting OzHarvest and ClimateCare, so we are incredibly proud to be partnering with such an eco-conscious business.

Use the code LYKA21 to receive 15% off your delivery – click here to order before you forget Mother’s Day on Sunday 9 May. We repeat, Sunday 9 May.

dog safe flowers

Lyka: a time-saver for fur mamas

Tired of spending hours in the kitchen cooking for your favourite furry friend? Buy back some precious time with our custom meal plans, which include a variety of meals tailored to your dog’s breed, weight and activity level. Order your Starter Box today and say hello to better nutrition and more time to play!



celtic sea salt dog

Celtic Sea Salt: a mineral-rich ingredient for your dog

Salt has played no small part in human history. It was one of the first commodities to be traded by ancient civilisations and has been used to enhance the flavour our food for thousands of years. Today, even our puppers can enjoy the goodness of this mineral-rich ingredient. Not all salt is created equal though – which is why we only use high-quality Celtic Sea Salt, which not only tastes great, but also provides important health benefits for you dog.

celtic sea salt dog

Why is Celtic Sea Salt good for your pup?

Celtic Sea Salt is unbleached and unrefined, and helps to regulate blood pressure and fight adrenal fatigue. Hand harvested, Celtic Sea Salt contains a higher amount of essential trace minerals such as calcium, potassium, magnesium and iron, compared with table salt.

Each of these minerals play a vital role in your puppers health:

  • Calcium is important for bone health and development
  • Potassium helps regulate fluid balance as well as heart and muscle contractions
  • Magnesium is a key nutrient that’s needed for muscle movement and nervous system signalling
  • Iron helps our pups’ bodies make the haemoglobin they need for healthy red blood cells

Celtic Sea Salt also has a lower amount of sodium chloride than table salt. This is great news for your dog’s health. While their body needs sodium for many essential functions like regulating blood pressure and transmitting nerve signals, excessive amounts can be dangerous if they’re dehydrated. Unfortunately, because pet food industry regulators don’t give guidance on maximum salt content, many commercial dog foods tend to use high amounts of sodium chloride. At Lyka, your dog’s wellbeing is our top priority. We keep sodium levels in check and ensure our meals have high moisture levels, keeping your messy muncher happy and hydrated.

celtic sea salt dog

Lyka: nutritionally balanced for all life stages

All of Lyka’s recipes have just the right amount of Celtic Sea Salt that your pup’s body needs for optimal function. For a healthy and tasty meal your dog will love, try a Starter Box today!



dog sleep

Is your dog getting enough sleep?

One of the best things we can do to protect and support our overall health and immunity is sleep. Quality sleep gives our bodies time to heal and repair itself. It’s the same for our pups, and their sleep habits can tell you a lot about their general health and wellbeing.

How much should your dog sleep?

The amount of sleep your dog needs depends on their age, breed and even the weather outside.

  • Adult dogs require anywhere between 12–14 hours of sleep each day.
  • Just like babies, puppies need even more sleep than adult dogs, to help support their muscle and neural development as well as their immune system. It’s normal for your puppy to sleep 18–20 hours per day, but rest assured they’ll more than make up for it when awake.
  • Older dogs need more sleep than their younger selves – they tire more easily and need extra time to recharge their batteries. You might also find that they are generally less active during waking hours. 
  • Working dog breeds will likely sleep less because their ancestors were conditioned to stay awake for longer periods to perform specific tasks. Conversely, pups who don’t have hard labour built into their DNA will likely sleep more and may have even inherited a bit of a lazybones attitude.

Does your dog need a sleep schedule?

A sleep schedule can help instil good bedtime habits. Here a few things to consider if you’re thinking of scheduling your pup’s sleep routine:

  • Unlike us, dogs don’t need to get all of their sleep in one go – especially puppies who require a lot of total snooze time.
  • A sleep schedule helps prevent toilet accidents, as your dog may not last a long stretch of sleep without needing to use the bathroom.
  • Rescue dogs may benefit from a sleep schedule to help get them used to their new homes.
  • Once you’ve set up a good foundation for your pup’s sleep routine, you can loosen the requirements and add flexibility to the schedule. Who doesn’t love a late night or little sleep in from time to time? 

How does your dog’s diet affect their sleep?

Being overweight or overfed can make dogs lethargic and sleep more. If you suspect this is the case for your dog, portion-controlled feeding can help. Older dogs are particularly susceptible to weight gain, so this is especially important for them.

Pups packing a few extra kilos are also more prone to sleep quality issues like sleep apnoea and snoring, which can be difficult to monitor in dogs. Be sure to speak with your vet if you’re concerned.

If your pup has developed bathroom issues during the night, perhaps look at the time you’re feeding them – eating too close to bedtime might be the reason they need to relieve themselves.

What else can you do to help your dog sleep better?

To help ensure quality sleep for your pup, try to keep them physically and mentally stimulated during the day, encouraging them to stay awake – that way they’re more likely to stick to their sleep schedule. Exercise and at least 30 minutes of movement a day is key.

If your dog is oversleeping, it could be a sign that something else is going on. Too much sleep could be related to conditions like:

  • Canine depression
  • Diabetes
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Possible loss of hearing

That’s why it’s important to consult your vet if you notice changes in your dog’s sleeping patterns.

Blue light can affect your sleep, does it affect your dog’s too?

In short, yes.

In humans, light alters the body’s circadian rhythm, which affects your sleep and increases your risk of cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and obesity. Light a night is the reason why so many people don’t get enough shut-eye and are more susceptible to depression. Blue light wavelengths get a bad rap, but they are incredibly beneficial during daylight hours as they help to boost attention, reaction times, as well as your mood. However, blue light is incredibly disruptive at night, and not helped with society’s obsession with screen time. Too much blue light can cause insomnia by suppressing the body’s melatonin production.

When it comes to your dog, they too can feel the effects of light. Ever wondered why they might not be winding down at night? Your light bulbs or glow from your LED TV screen may be impacting your dog’s ability to do so. This is why a bedtime routine is so incredibly important. Dim the lights, remove any distractions, speak to them in a calm voice and reward their good behaviour with a small treat – careful not to get them too excited.

Why your dog will love Lyka

Made from fresh, human-grade ingredients, Lyka’s serving sizes are customised to suit your pup’s age, weight and activity levels. Each meal isserved individually, so you  can be confident in knowing that you’re not overfeeding your furry friend.

Delicious and nutritious Lyka – for a healthy weight and sweet pupper dreams.



dog fresh food

Lyka Story: From raw to lightly cooked, how fresh food helps keep Freddie in tip-top shape!

Much loved and much wanted, Freddie was a surprise almost twenty years in the making! Now, we have to warn you – your heart may melt reading this story, just saying….

Welcoming Freddie to the family

“We hadn’t had a dog in our family for over twenty-five years, and after years of continual hounding from our youngest son, Stephen, we decided it was the right time.”

Freddie’s fur mama, Jackie

It had always been Stephen’s dream to have a Golden Retriever – who can resist that gorgeous golden fur, long licky tongue and loving nature – so, whilst Stephen was on holiday overseas with his girlfriend Brooke in February 2020, his family put their plan into action.

Freddie joined the family as an eight-week old pup, and just one week later, Stephen arrived home to the shock – and surprise – of his life.

“On the afternoon Stephen arrived home, we hid Freddie in the backyard with our other son Mitchell whilst Stephen came inside to tell us about his trip. Mitchell then carried Freddie around the side of the house and up to the front door. He rang the doorbell and we asked Stephen to answer, telling him it was the dinner delivery. Stephen opened the door to Mitchell and Freddie, and just burst into tears. It was priceless. We actually videoed the moment and it makes me cry every time I watch it, it was such a gorgeous reaction.”

Freddie’s fur mama, Jackie

As a super friendly, food-driven Goldie, he was very easy to train, with his new family teaching him the tricks of the trade – sit, down, come, heel, roll over, shake, high five, and all the rest.

“If I do a training session and he’s really hungry, he gets so excited and does three or four tricks all at once even before I ask him to, just so he can get a treat – he’s such a funny fellow.”

Freddie’s fur mama, Jackie

golden retriever energy

The antics of fun, friendly Freddie

Life is never dull with Freddie around, and you can catch him pulling all the iconic Goldie moves, including sleeping on his back with his legs spread apart, sitting on the edge of the couch with just his front legs on the floor, leaning on a wall or available leg, putting his face on someone’s knee when he wants a sneaky treat, playing with his favourite soft toys, or enjoying a good old belly rub. And he loves the water, whether it’s swimming in the family pool or at the lake near their Forster holiday house, Freddie can’t get enough.

“He has a habit of trying to ‘save’ us if we swim with him. He’ll swim over and grab your hand or arm in his mouth and try to pull you to safety.”

Freddie’s fur mama, Jackie

This gorgeous boy also knows how to entertain his family and often has them in stiches with his hilarious antics.

“We were at our holiday house in Forster, and as we were feeding the ducks from the jetty, Freddie came running down from the house, jumped straight into the canal, and swam around chomping up all the bread – it was absolutely hilarious!”

Freddie’s fur mama, Jackie

golden retriever energy

From kibble to raw

Freddie spent most of his puppyhood eating kibble, as well as a little meat and veg, before moving onto a raw diet after his fur mama read about it on a Golden Retriever Facebook page.

“Unfortunately, Freddie was unable to tolerate raw food – it was causing him to vomit and suffer from diarrhoea. As I’ve learnt, Goldies are notorious for having sensitive tummies and sensitive skin, so I started home cooking his meals, but it was very time-consuming at dinner when I was trying to get the family meal organised as well, and the smell of the raw food being cooked was just awful.”

Freddie’s fur mama, Jackie

Finding Lyka

At one of Freddie’s vet visits, his fur mama was told about Lyka and the lightly cooked meals on offer.

“I tried Lyka on recommendation from my vet after discussing the issues Freddie was having on a raw diet. He suggested I look at Lyka because it was a lightly cooked diet and had all the necessary vitamins and nutrients.”

Freddie’s fur mama, Jackie

Jackie learnt that although a raw diet is popular amongst many dog owners, it’s not always a healthy choice, and it wasn’t working for her beloved Golden Retriever.

“The vet explained that a raw diet can make dogs very sick from the bacteria levels in the raw meat. So, he gave me Lyka’s details and I signed up for a Starter Box and haven’t looked back, Freddie loved it from day one. I have since recommended it to a friend with a five-year old Labrador named Zac, who was having trouble with his weight – she said he loves the food and is at a great weight now, too!”

Freddie’s fur mama, Jackie

At Freddie’s desexing appointment, he had been on Lyka for a few months, and his fur mama was thrilled when she was told that he was in peak condition and an absolute picture of health for a Goldie.

golden retriever energy

“He has fantastic muscle tone, his teeth are beautiful and white, and I hardly have to worry about trying to clean them. His skin is healthy, never any dryness, which a lot of Goldie owners complain about. His coat is beautiful and shiny, and he never gets that ‘doggy’ smell.”

Freddie’s fur mama, Jackie

At fourteen months old, Freddie is full of beans, a great weight and living his best Goldie life.

“Freddie’s digestion is great, he’s had absolutely no issues whilst he’s been on Lyka and his poos look great. He has so much energy and eats all the recipes with gusto – he loves the new Turkey Bowl!”

Freddie’s fur mama, Jackie

golden retriever energy

Curious about how Lyka can help your pup?

A convenient dog food subscription service, Lyka is made for all life stages, and contains all the necessary nutrients needed to live a healthy, happy life.

With four recipes on offer, all of which contain powerful and purposeful ingredients, you can completely customise your pup’s meals based on their breed, weight and activity level. The meals are delivered straight to your door and frozen for freshness. Our pups are like family it’s only fair that they eat like it, too!

Click the link below and start your Lyka journey today.



Hemp seeds: a mighty superfood for dogs

They may be small, but hemp seeds sure are mighty when it comes to keeping your dog healthy. Packed with protein and boasting an optimal balance of omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids to help keep your pup’s skin, coat and joints in tip-top condition, hemp seeds get our tick of approval.

dog hemp seeds dog

Why are hemp seeds good for your pup?

Hemp seeds are rich in protein
Like us, pups need protein to form new skin cells, grow hair and build muscle tissue. But it doesn’t stop there. Protein also helps create hormones and enzymes that are needed for normal bodily functions. Not all protein is the same though, and it’s the quality that’s important when it comes to your pup’s food. Protein is made up of different amino acids, and our furry friends need 22 of these essential building blocks. Some amino acids can be made by the body, but approximately half need to come from the food that your pup eats. Deficiencies of any of the essential amino acids over time can lead to health problems, for example low levels of the amino acids, cystine and methionine, can lead to low levels of taurine, which is linked to canine dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM).

Hemp seeds have a balanced omega 3:6 ratio
Omega 6s are inflammatory, so it’s important that they’re kept in balance alongside anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids. At Lyka, we keep the omega 3:6 ratio between 3:1 and 2:1 – it’s much lower than the 30:1 ratio recommended by the AAFCO dog food standards, but we do this to avoid the pro-inflammatory risks, such as joint inflammation, which is associated with high levels of omega 6. Also good to know – omega 3s are especially great for skin and bone health!

dog hemp seeds


Hemp seeds are a source of magnesium
Magnesium is a key nutrient that’s involved in energy production at a cellular level – the heart can’t function without it, and it’s also needed for muscle movement and nervous system signalling.

Hemp seeds contain phosphorus
Apart from being a component of your pupper’s DNA, phosphorus plays a major role in bone health. The latest AAFCO guidelines (they’re the nutritional standards for dog foods) recommend that the ratio of calcium to phosphorus should fall within 1:1 – 1.6:1. At Lyka, our in-house vet has designed all of our meals so that the ratio sits at the lower end of this scale (at 1.2 -1.3 calcium to 1 phosphorus). This leaves room for giving your dog additional bones now and then, without exceeding calcium limits which would put your dog at risk of hip dysplasia. You should check with your vet first before giving your dog bones.

You can find hemp seeds in our Grass-Fed Lamb Bowl.

dog hemp seeds

Lyka: tasty and nutritious for all life stages

All of our ingredients are powerful and purposeful, and chosen for their benefits to your pup. Order a Starter Box today and treat your furry friend to a tasty, fresh food diet!



International Women's Day

International Women’s Day: Interview with Lyka founder, Anna Podolsky

An incredibly important day on the calendar, International Women’s Day is a time to reflect and acknowledge the women around us, who inspire us and implore us to be the best version of ourselves.

Founder of Lyka, Anna Podolsky, knows a thing or two about the positive impact women can have on the people and world around them.

I managed to grab Anna for a quick sit-down chat to find out what IWD means to her when it comes to female empowerment and the challenges that women face in business.

What has been the most empowering moment in your career?

Without a doubt, quitting my job to start Lyka! Taking this enormous leap of faith meant that I could shape the direction of both my dream career and the company that I was building and align them with my goals and vision. So, whilst it was a huge risk to leave a comfortable, well-paying job in a field I had extensive experience and knowledge in, I felt incredibly empowered in doing so. Ultimately, I was able to move across to an industry I felt passionate about and turn my love for animals and wellness into a career where I was helping dogs around Australia to live their best lives – how could I say no to the that!

What are some of the challenges that you’ve faced as a woman in business?

As the founder of a start-up, I am often meeting with investors, who are predominantly male. This is completely at odds from the market in which we are serving, as females own more pets than males, and tend to make the buying decisions when it comes to household items, including pet food. This can be challenging, as the male investors often struggle to align themselves to the long-term vision of Lyka and the opportunities presented to them. I am not alone in this though, as many amazing companies serving female-focused markets also find it difficult to gain traction with male investors, but it’s definitely been a great learning opportunity and allowed me to hone my pitching skills.

Who are the women that have inspired your journey or empowered you during your life and career?

I have been fortunate to meet many inspiring women in my life, with my female friends and colleagues being my main source of inspiration. I studied Mathematics at university, which is a predominantly male-dominated degree, but this experience allowed me to meet inspiring like-minded women, who I’m still in contact with today, and who’ve gone on to have incredibly successful careers both in Australia and internationally.

Women face much adversity throughout their careers yet are constantly smashing the glass ceiling. As a company founder and woman yourself, how important is it to employ other women at Lyka, and what do they bring to your team?

I believe that diversity is extremely important in a company, especially when it comes to bringing different views and experiences to the table. The ways in which my employees view the world, really does have a profound and positive impact on the company when it comes to discussions, brainstorming and ideation. I am passionate about creating a collaborative environment in which everyone is comfortable expressing themselves. The more ideas, the better, and ultimately, the more unique the outcomes will be.

Do you have any advice for women wanting to start their own business or work their way up the corporate ladder?

We work the majority of our lives, so I truly believe that you need to pursue your passion, no matter how challenging it may appear. Finding the right support network is key, as it takes grit and determination to put your dreams into action, and the support around you will hold you in good stead when facing your challenges head on. No dream is too big – to see my vision of shaking up the pet industry come to fruition has been absolutely incredible. The dream may be good, but the reality is better, so keep going. You’ve got this.

Read more about Anna’s story here.



Washing your dog in the bath

How to help your dog love bath time

So, you’ve got your dog sitting, staying and rolling on command. Their puppy park etiquette is excellent and their off-leash behaviour is a dream. So, why is bath time still a disaster?! If the thought of trying to give your dog a bath makes you both want to run and hide under the bed, never fear. Lots of dogs are naturally scared of baths, but with a few handy tips, you can turn the whole ordeal into a fun time for you and your pup.  

Are dogs scared of bathing or something else?

Whilst many parts of your home may be the perfect nook for your pup, chances are, the place you’re trying to give them a bath in was not designed with them in mind. Look around your bathing environment for things other than the bath that might be scaring your pup. The younger you start familiarising them with the space, the better. If you can, try to get them comfortable with their bath time surroundings as a puppy, starting with short bursts and very low pressure scenarios, so they get used to the area without any associated stress. We do advise against bathing within the first week of adoption though, as it can be fear–provoking when the two of you are still bonding.

The slippery slidey surfaces of a wet bath may be a major reason your pupper is freaking out, and we don’t blame them! Try putting down a rubber mat so your pup can stand securely and feel safe. Loud noises also often translate to danger for a dog, so reduce scary sounds of loud running water from the tap or showerhead, and use pre-filled buckets to rinse off instead. If you’re washing your pup off outside, remember that tap water can be shockingly cold. Try bringing buckets of warm water from taps inside instead. Extreme hot water can scald and make your dog uncomfortable as well, so remember to keep water lukewarm to avoid any nasty surprises for your pooch. 

Still no luck with bathing your dog?

For an especially reluctant dog, you can try easing your way into bath time:

  • Create positive associations with the bath by giving them food or toys just for spending time in the dry bath. Build up this association before trying to actually give them a bath or introducing water.
    Pro tip: Smear a bit of Lyka on the side of the bathtub to get them in and exploring!
  • Once they’re comfortable being in the bath, wet one paw a little bit and see how they react, slowly easing into getting more and more of their body wet. Take your time with this process and keep it relaxed and low pressure.
  • Try quickly turning taps on and off to get them used to the sounds of running water, rewarding them all the time with treats. 
  •  If your pup doesn’t respond well to getting their paws wet, try slowly introducing a wet sponge or loofah; let them smell it, rub it gently on their body, and then smell it again, stopping whenever they show signs of discomfort. You can even start this with a dry sponge and slowly introduce water for a nice, slow transition. 
Dog in the bath


Reinforcement is key with all of these bath time behaviours, so give lots of treats, toys and cuddles (if your dog is comfortable being touched) to let them know they are safe, and to create a positive association with the bath and running water. Remember to be patient, and approach bath time knowing it may be a very slow process. Our furry friends can sense our stress levels, and can be resistant to situations that we feel tense in, so don’t push through if you’re starting to resent the process. Going slow will mean a greater chance of success in the long run, so go at a pace that feels comfortable for both you and your pupper!

If you consistently aren’t making any progress, or feel that your dog is becoming visibly stressed and anxious, chat to a vet or behaviourist about what other steps you can take.

Bathing your dog isn’t everything

Your dog still needs other grooming outside of bathing, including brushing their fur and teeth to ensure they’re as healthy as can be. For more handy tips, check out our guides to grooming and taking care of your dog’s teeth.

Lyka: Caring for your pup in every way

At Lyka, we care about your pup’s overall health, from the inside and out. To discover the difference Lyka meals can make, why not try a Starter Box today and see how a customised approach to your pup’s diet can improve their life.



How to give your pup some extra lovin’ on Love Your Pet Day!

We know you’re obsessed with your pups and would do anything for them, but with it being Love Your Pet Day on Saturday 20 February, we thought you might want to do a little something extra to show them how much you appreciate their furry presence in your life. From a dog holiday to a fun brunch, here are our top ten tips:

1. Say ‘I love you’

There’s no time for embarrassment here, now is the time to kiss and cuddle your fur baby, and own that high-pitched voice that only your pupper adores, and tell them how much you love them – trust us, they know what you’re saying! This is a plain and simple, but very effective way to show your pupper some serious lovin’.

2. Give your pup a massage to relax

For many pups, there can never be too many pats from their human. So why not go above and beyond and treat them to an entire doggy massage.

Massaging your pup not only makes them feel good, but it can also assist those who suffer from stress, anxiety and arthritis, helping them to relax and feel at ease.

Starting at the neck, work your way down your pup’s body with calm, gentle strokes, adjusting the pressure as needed, careful not to push or squeeze too hard. For an extra feel-good moment for your pupper – and if they’ll comfortably let you – why not massage your pup’s ears? This movement releases endorphins, those deliciously happy, feel-good hormones. Voila, hello happy pupper!

If you’re feeling extra fancy, you could always book in to learn the art of dog yoga online.

3. Get walking

Explore the wide open spaces and take them on a walk they’ve never been on, visit a doggy beach they’ve never run on, or just go the opposite way to usual when walking out of your gate.

Our leash collar and harness picks include the Forest Green + Brass Rope Dog Leash from Animals in Charge, the Veronica Collar from Pillie Pooches, the Sasha Dog Lead from Molly Barker and the DF Co. Dog Harness from Dog Friendly Co.  

dog holiday

4. Teach & treat

Why not take the time to teach your pup some new tricks – with a side of treats for bribery, of course!

Here are some great examples of tricks in action: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=soY1HbsJDz8

Did you know that you can add pouches of our delicious Green Tripe Treats to your pup’s box – they are such a hit with the Lyka pack! Contact our team at info@lyka.com.au to add some to your next order.

5. Surprise with a new toy

Let’s face it, your pupper can never have too many toys. From soft toys to chew ropes and balls that you can fill with treats, you’re bound to get many big licks if you surprise them with something new at playtime!

Some of our top picks include the Barker Treat Ball, Doggo Avo Toast, Nylon Pipe Wrench, and Olly the Octopus.

6. Invest in a new bed

We all know how good it feels to hop into a bed with brand new sheets, so why not freshen up your pup’s sleep time with a new bed.

Our faves include the iconic Barney Bed, the Cuddler from Snooza and the PlushMat! Plus from Rover Pet Products.

Sweet dreams!

dog holiday

7. Visit a dog cafe

BRISBANE

Snag & Brown, Annerley: Serving up puppacinos, this dog-friendly café has a fenced park out the back, aptly named, ‘Pooch Park’.

Little Black Pug, Mount Gravatt: The name says it all, really. For those with two legs, there’s the cafe’s famous Dog’s Breakfast, whilst your two-legged friend can chow down on homemade meatballs and slurp on a puppycino.

SYDNEY

Brooklyn Crispy, Potts Point: Now, we are all about moderation here at Lyka, and these guys whip up a pretty impressive selection of dog-friendly pizza. That’s right, pizza – because we all deserve to indulge every now and then! With your pup’s choice of toppings including kangaroo bacon, poached chicken and vegetables, all on a base of sweet potato and paprika, this is certainly a treat to remember. You can even order a bottle of bone broth for your four-legged friend – find it under “Puppy Vino” on the dog menu.

Café Bones, Leichardt: Very chilled and laid-back, this is probably the dog-friendliest dog cafe you’ll find in Sydney. There’s puppucinos for your furry friend and plenty of delicious snacks for you to enjoy – there’s even a great grassy area for your pup to run around and mingle with the other furry customers.

Click here to read about more of our fave dog-friendly cafes in Sydney.

CANBERRA

Two Before Ten, Aranda: With coffee sack dog blankets and water bowls on hand, this is a great place to take your pup, with great seating options for Canberra’s hot summers and chilly winter days. It’s also at the start (or end!) of the Aranda Walk, which your pup is bound to love!

Common Grounds, Gowrie: This newly renovated café has plenty of outdoor tables, as well as an area at the rear that overlooks the Brindabella Mountains. It’s also close to the Gowrie-Fadden Walk, making it the perfect spot to take your pup for an outing. Get in early to snag your spot!

MELBOURNE

The Dog Café, Boronia: This place is heaven on earth for pups, we’re talking swimming pools, a sandpit and even a movie room complete with beanbags and couches, as well as a dog-friendly menu filled with puppacinos and a variety of tasty treats. They even hold doggy birthdays and weddings here – told you it was heaven.

Dish & Spoon, Camberwell: A place where the pups will have as much fun as the humans, this café dishes up super tasty plates for you, and has water bowls scattered throughout for your pupper. There’s even a doggy door that leads to a designated dog-friendly courtyard!

ADELAIDE:

Octeine Coffee, Kent Town: Serving up top notch coffee and puppacinos on the daily, this super chic, warehouse-style cafe has loads of seating options and is just minutes from the CBD.

The Flying Fig Delicatessen, North Adelaide: These guys make a mean puppacino, and every week they crown a new #figdoggo of the week, so make sure your pup comes dressed to impress!

8. Take your pup to a meet-up

If your four-legged friend is a social butterfly, scope out the local dog groups on Facebook and tag along to the next pup meet-up. Your pup is guaranteed to have a good time, and you’re bound to have something in common with the other members!

9. Splurge on a night at a pet-friendly hotel

If you’ve got the goodest pup in town, why not spoil them with a staycation or a dog holiday to another city? Here are our top picks!

BRISBANE

The Inchcolm by Ovolo: A one-of-a-kind dog friendly experience, Ovolo’s V.I.Pooch service will ensure you and your furry friend both enjoy a relaxing, stress-free stay. Your pup will receive a snuggly bed to curl up on, an eating/drinking mat and food bowl, as well as a doggy bag filled with specially-chosen toys and treats. The dog-loving staff are also on hand to provide any assistance that you may need. And as for you? Ovolo haven’t forgotten, offering an array of their iconic perks to keep happy and content from the minute you wake up until the minute your head hits the pillow

SYDNEY

Pier One: With direct pier access, the select dog-friendly rooms are equipped with a dog bed from P.L.A.Y., as well as a food and water bowl. You can even opt for an in-room dining menu or a doggy minibar, which is jam-packed with safe snacks for your pup. For something a little extra, you can take your four-legged friend to The Gantry Restaurant for a doggy degustation in the outdoor dining area. No weight restrictions apply, and there is a maximum of two dogs per room.

MELBOURNE

QT: The pet-friendly rooms feature a pup-friendly mini bar packed with tasty treats, and there’s even a in-room dinner menu created specially for your furry friend by QT’s Head of Treats, Nic Wood. For service that goes the extra mile, the hotel’s Director of Chaos is ready for to walk your pup, whilst the bespoke pupQ grooming service will have your furry pal washed and looking pawesome! Sorry, we had to do it. It’s important to note that there is a 20kg limit for your pup, and only one pup per room. Book here.

CANBERRA

Abode Kingston: Just steps from the trendy Kingston shopping and cafe precinct, this is the perfect home away from home, a place where your pup will be treated like a VIP guest. Some rooms have access to a small courtyard, whilst others offer convenient access to a pedestrian walkway and grassy area. There is a maximum of two pets per room, and all guests will receive a 20% off discount voucher for online pet accessory store, Best Friends Pets.

ADELAIDE

Hilton Adelaide:  Indulge in the spacious rooms of this stylish hotel, which is located in the bustling heart of Adelaide’s city centre and just minutes from Adelaide’s famous Rundle Mall. Please note, there is one pup per room, and he or she must not exceed 34kg.

dog holiday

10. Feed your pup the good stuff

There’s truly nothing better that you can do for your pup, than make mealtime delicious and nutritious. Our recipes are formulated by our in-house Integrated Vet alongside a Veterinary Nutritionist, with every ingredient powerful, purposeful and packing a punch, to ensure your pup always looks and feels their best. Order your Lyka Starter Box today and kick start your pup’s health journey!  



Please note, all of our recommendations are our own, no content is sponsored.


Lyka Story: How natural food put the sparkle back in Snoopy Girl’s eye

It began like most new puppy stories – Michelle’s friend from her daughter’s school had a gorgeous black dog who had just had a litter of five adorable puppies. She asked Michelle if she wanted to come over and see the pups and have a play. Having decided with her family that they would adopt a fur baby at the end of 2019, the timing seemed perfect. You can see where this is going…

“We visited the puppies just to play, not to buy – famous last words, right!”

Snoopy Girl’s fur mama, Michelle

Bringing Snoopy Girl home

After that initial visit, Michelle and her family went back and saw the puppies several more times. They were mixed breed with a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, the breed they had set their sights on, and there was one fluff ball that she just couldn’t stop thinking about. One by one, the puppies found their furever homes. Unable to get Sasha (as she had been named) out of her mind, Michelle called her friend to see if the adorable pup was still available, and as fate would have it, she was. One more visit later and it was a done deal. The beautiful black fluffy puppy was coming home.

“We were so excited! Little Sasha became our Snoopy Girl. It was just meant to be.”

Snoopy Girl’s fur mama, Michelle

Weighing in at a tiny 5.2kg, Snoopy Girl is a pure black Cavalier x Poodle x Shih Tzu – Cavapooshi for short – she’s a very unique breed, like a limited edition.

“Snoopy Girl is definitely one in a million. I have had dogs before, but none of them have ever been quite like her. She is very smoochy and loving, and adores morning snuggles or kisses on the couch.”

Snoopy Girl’s fur mama, Michelle

From bliss to pain

From the start, Snoopy G (as her family often call her!) was a dream. She was close to 100% toilet trained from the day she came home, and she was a very quick learner. Of course, she has a sassy side that loves to bark every so often, but overall, Snoopy Girl was a fluffy angel. Who could say no those beautiful big brown eyes!

“When Snoopy G was around 6 months old, she started having a few issues. She would vomit clear liquid most mornings. The vet thought it may be reflux and to give her a little bit of food late at night before bed. At first, this seemed to help, but the problem soon returned. She was never able to get comfortable. Every morning she would pace in circles and lie down, and then get up and lie down again, and she just wouldn’t eat. Her intestines would make all sorts of squelching and gurgling noises. It was so sad to watch.”

Snoopy Girl’s fur mama, Michelle

One weekend, after watching their poor little girl suffering for far too long, they raced her back to the vet, who suggested that it might be back pain and prescribed a dose of pain killers. Initially, this worked. But it soon got worse, with Snoopy Girl ending up in emergency. A number of tests and x-rays later, and Michelle’s bank account a few thousand dollars lighter, Snoopy Girl’s family were no closer to finding answer to her excruciating pain.

“Sometimes it got so bad, her poop was bright yellow, blood streaked and jelly-like, then the next day, she would be fine. It was heartbreaking and frustrating, she had lost the sparkle in her eye and that cheeky sense of mischievousness. We tried all sorts of expensive food and diet changes. In the end, her diet mainly consisted of plain chicken and rice as that was all she could tolerate. Mealtime was not a great time in our household.”

Snoopy Girl’s fur mama, Michelle

Discovering Lyka

After so many unsuccessful visits to the vet, it was Snoopy Girl’s cute little Instagram friend that swooped in to save the day and her family’s sanity.

“We saw Lyka on @monty_the_cheese_puff’s Insta Stories, so I clicked through and loved that Lyka was all-natural, formulated by vets, human-grade, made in Australia and all freshly cooked. I made an initial enquiry but didn’t follow up until a month or so later. To be honest, even though I had read all of the amazing Lyka success stories, I just didn’t really hold out much hope that it would make a difference to my gorgeous girl, or that we would be ever be one of them. Wow, oh my dog, how positively wrong I was.”

Snoopy Girl’s fur mama, Michelle


Lyka brought Snoopy Girl back to life. The happy, bouncy, shiny, fluffy little dog that Michelle had brought home in 2019, was back.

“My gorgeous little Snoopy Girl is like a brand new shiny floofy dog. After 18 months of painful digestive issues, she was back to her usual self. She loved Lyka right from the start and it made such a difference. Have you ever seen anyone excited by the look of dog poop? Well, I’m here to tell you that my husband and I were! It was so exciting, her poop was solid, it was the perfect colour, it was well-formed, and well… normal. Instead of jelly-like blobs every couple of days, Snoopy G was pooping three wonderful poops every single day. We were ecstatic. Okay enough about poop!”

Snoopy Girl’s fur mama, Michelle

A new lease on life

“ Snoopy Girl has been on Lyka for two months now and she’s full of energy and playfulness. She zoomies here, there and everywhere – she even looks forward to breakfast.”

Snoopy Girl’s fur mama, Michelle


From a pup who was in constant pain and couldn’t get comfortable, to a pup who is now waking up every morning well-rested with a happy face, a wagging tail and a bounce in her step, it’s almost got to be seen to be believed.

“Lyka has been absolutely life-changing. I only wish we had discovered it sooner.”

Snoopy Girl’s fur mama, Michelle

It’s safe to say that watermelon and car ride-loving Snoopy Girl, is now living her best life and has well and truly got that sparkle back in her eye!

Lyka: delicious and nutritious for your pupper

Formulated by our in-house Integrative Vet and a Veterinary Nutritionist, our recipes have been given the drool of approval and contain all the goodness that puppers need to live their best tail-wagging lives.

Click the link below and start the change today!



dog friendly Box Vale walking track

The dog-friendly Box Vale Walking Track

The Box Vale Walking Track is a unique mix of history, flora and fauna. Taking its name from the tramway that began operation in 1888 which once carried as much as 100 tons of coal per day from the Nattai River Gorge, the dog friendly Box Vale Walking Track is a very pretty walk with the added benefit of multiple grades of difficulty for those of you who want more of a challenge.  

Length of the entire trail: 13.3 kms

Where: Turning off 3.7 km west of Mittagong, Box Vale Walking Track is just 250 metres off the Hume Highway and under 1 km from the Wombeyan Caves Road

Terrain: Can be uneven at points, but has level grades throughout

Difficulty: Moderate to difficult as the walk continues

Features: BBQ and picnic near the Trackhead Carpark, as well as the lookout past the tunnel

The start of your journey

A 3-hour return walk, the first 4.4km takes you along terrain that is sometimes a little uneven and slightly steep, but mostly this is a walk that is easy to traverse. You and your pupper will come across plenty of friends along this part of the track, so there’ll be pats and smiles all ‘round.

dog friendly Box Vale walking track

Along this trail you’ll find yourself encountering an historic tunnel that is 84 meters in length and part of the old tramway. This hollow tunnel is especially enjoyed by kids, who love bouncing their echo off the hollow walls.

Whilst there is some slightly uneven terrain, this track also has easy, level paths for respite along the way if needed. Wildlife is in abundance in the area, so be sure to keep your eye out!

For the more adventurous

If you have a little more time on your side, you can make your way down the fire trail towards the Forty Foot Falls. This will add an extra 1.5km and an additional hour to the trek, making it approximately a 4-hour round-trip. The Falls cannot be seen from the end of the trail, but it’s definitely worth the walk to be surrounded by stunning bushland.

Reaching the Falls

Having come this far though, the Falls are an absolute must – especially if you love to break a sweat! If you do want to experience the majestic Forty Foot Falls in all their glory, be prepared for a steep decline – we’re talking navigating a 110-metre drop, so it’s not for the faint hearted. If you can, we recommend bringing along some gloves, as there’s a cable you can use to help stabilise yourself on the way down. This is a difficult trek and takes experience to navigate. If you do decide to go all the way to the Falls, be prepared to add an extra 1.8km and another 2 hours to the original walk, plus stopping for a rest and some snap-happy moments, of course, so don’t forget the camera and a big bottle of water! It really is a spectacular trail, and the return journey is sure to feature sights you didn’t see on the way down. Well worth the sore legs the next day!

Lyka gives your pup the energy for any walk

Giving your dog Lyka means you’re setting them up with all the energy they need for even the longest of walks. Made from human-grade meats, vegetables and superfoods, you can give your pup a personalised and balanced meal without having to cook it yourself. To give your dog a taste of our delicious fresh food, head to our website and order your Starter Box today.



australia pet food

Lyka Pet Food: Australian Made Dog Food

We’re proud to be officially Australian Owned and Made

We’re incredibly proud to be 100% Australian owned and operated. Each of our recipes are made, packed and even taste tasted with love in our human-grade kitchen in Sydney, with quality, taste and nutrition at the forefront of everything we do.  

Brought to life by our founder Anna Podolsky and co-founder Dr. Matthew Muir, a renowned Australian integrative vet, Lyka Pet Food was the result of Anna’s journey with her pup’s health, a Border Collie cross named – yep, you guessed it – Lyka!  

From the start, the brand was built on heart, with a desire to create delicious meals for your pupper that were complete and balanced for every life stage. At age of 4 or 5, Lyka began experiencing extremely itchy skin, to the point where she was developing bald patches and scarring from the constant intense scratching. Her vet had even told Anna that Lyka had bad tooth decay and would be needing some extractions. Confused and fed up, Anna set about trying to work out why her best friend was suffering so badly when she was consuming a premium commercial pet food diet and enjoying exercise three times a day, along with frequent trips to the vet. None of it made sense. It was then that Anna started researching the benefits of a fresh food diet. Lyka is now 11 years old, but is often mistaken for a puppy because of her happy, playful nature and super shiny coat. The results spoke for themselves and Anna knew she had to share them and give Australians the chance to reap the benefits of a happy, healthy pupper. 

Redefining Australian Dog Food


This is why we are on a mission to redefine dog food in Australia. We care about where our ingredients come from, always sourcing locally and sustainably where possible. We are proud to say that 85-95% of each recipe is made using Australian ingredients, with 100% of our meats sourced via Australian farmers.  

We are and always will be, Australian Made.



cavoodle dog food

Lyka Story: How fresh food changed the lives of Nala and Kira

Two gorgeous dogs can only mean one thing – a whole lotta love!  
 
And that’s exactly what Nala and Kira, sister Cavoodles born six months apart, brought into the lives of Colleen and her family.  

Meet Nala and Kira, the friendly cavoodles

Colleen had been looking for a furry companion to join the family for many months. She knew she wanted a small dog and one that loved being around people. After keeping her eye out for the perfect pupper, she came across a reputable breeder near Byron Bay, and after spending time talking with them, knew she had to put a deposit down. It wasn’t long before Nala had joined Colleen’s clan, and then just six months later, adorable Kira came along.  

Even though they are sisters, they have completely different personalities.  
 

“Nala is my shadow, and always has to be touching me and gets very upset if I’m not around. She’s also my laundry buddy, she can’t get enough of clean washing – wherever it is, you’ll find Nala sleeping on it. Kira on the other hand, is extremely bold and confident, although she does get a little anxious about certain things, but don’t we all!”  

Nala and Kira’s fur mama, Colleen 

Both pups just love cats, especially Nala, and have bonded over their love of felines – very lucky considering that Colleen fosters both cats and kittens, and even has five of her own!  

There’s no doubt that Nala and Kira provide a lot of fun and laughter for Colleen and her family.  

“We took Nala and Kira to a friend’s house one day – they live on acreage, and both girls disappeared for about an hour, only coming back to the house when they were covered nose to tail in mud, it was absolutely hilarious!” 

Nala and Kira’s fur mama, Colleen 

From supermarket food to a fresh, natural diet!

 With two new gorgeous furry family members, life was looking good, but Colleen soon noticed that Nala was suffering from regular ear infections and a serious case of skin itchiness, with red swollen patches popping up on her stomach, indicating that she was allergic to something in her food.  

“I spent a fortune at the vet trying to work out the best way forward, including putting Nala on an elimination diet and doing numerous allergy tests.”  

Nala and Kira’s fur mama, Colleen 

It was from this moment that Colleen started looking into natural feeding options, aware that the added nutrients and preservative-free approach might help to rid Nala of her health woes – something she knew the supermarket-bought foods weren’t helping with. 
 
But like any busy mother, she soon discovered that as much as she was committed to cooking Nala’s food from scratch, she just did not have the time or capacity. So, where to from here? Google, of course. In her quest for alternative natural feeding options, she stumbled upon Lyka.  
 
Freshly prepared using local, natural ingredients, Lyka ticked all the boxes – especially the one about convenient home delivery. Nala was sorted.  

Now it was onto Kira.  
 
Kira was a very fussy eater, definitely not one of the puppers that lives for mealtime. In fact, mealtime was becoming quite a stressful event, with Colleen having to sit by Kira and hand feed her to make sure she ate – we shall call her Princess Kira! But all jokes aside, it was becoming increasingly obvious that Kira was underweight and definitely not getting all the nutrients she needed.

“From her first Lyka bowl, Kira dived right in – I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. Now she lives for mealtime and licks the bowl clean, it’s been such an incredible change.”  

Nala and Kira’s fur mama, Colleen 

Life on Lyka

Nala has only had one minor ear infection since being on Lyka, and she hasn’t had any skin flare-ups – such a treat considering she spent much of her time itching.     
 
Meanwhile, Kira has gained 2kg and is maintaining a suitable weight for her frame. Her poops are also regular and the ideal shape and texture, making the clean-up so much easier!  

As for which recipes the girls prefer?  
 

“Nala loves the Lamb Bowl, whilst Kira can’t get enough of the Chicken Bowl!”  

Nala and Kira’s fur mama, Colleen 

Lyka: made for puppers of all ages

Lyka is complete and balanced for all life stages, taking your fur baby from puppyhood right through to their golden years. Low GI, high in fibre and rich in antioxidants and omega 3s, our recipes help to minimise the risk of developing cancer and chronic diseases, giving your pupper the best chance to live a long and healthy life – with a shiny coat to boot!  
 
Head to our website and start building your pupper’s best life today!  



noise phobia dogs

Noise Phobia: How to help your pup through the fireworks this NYE

After the craziness of 2020, it’s safe to say that we are all pretty excited to be ringing in a new year. Your pupper on the other hand, may not be quite as stoked.  

Our furry friends hear a lot better than we do (4 to 5 times better!) and they can detect high and low levels of sound that are not audible to us, so it’s no surprise that a fireworks display or a summer thunderstorm may inject a sense of fear into their usually peaceful routine. 

“A dog has the cognitive ability of an 18-24 month old child and as such, will never understand its external environment in the same way we do. Noise and movement are the two main stimulants for dogs, and these can very easily overwhelm dogs, resulting in reactivity and anxiety.” 

Ian Shivers from Bondi Behaviourist

Noise phobia is a serious issue, because whilst some puppers may just hide under the bed or bark, some will do anything to escape the noise, including breaking windows or jumping the fence to try and get away.

So, what can you do to help your furry friend feel and stay safe around loud noises this New Year’s Eve? 

  • Set up a cosy spot: whether it’s under the table or desk, inside a wardrobe or just in a quiet corner of your home, creating a safe dark space that is filled with your pupper’s favourite toys, blankets and a few treats will help them to feel secure. If your furry friend is crate trained, they may find this small space very comforting with a blanket draped over the top. Depending on your pupper’s behaviour, you can leave them here to self-soothe or just sit quietly beside them. It might also be worth investing in some Mutt Muffs to help with noise reduction and lowering your pup’s stress levels.  
  • Play calming music: play some soothing tunes or download a meditation or white noise app and use these sounds to distract your pupper from the scary noises outside.  
  • Apply pressure to your pupper: just like a baby feels content when swaddled, dogs are the same. Without patting or stroking, try gently leaning on your pup and applying continuous pressure – not too much of course, but you should start to feel their muscles relax if this method is working. 
  • Distract with toys and treats: depending on your pupper’s behaviour, you may be able to distract them with some of their favourite treats or toys and play around with them until the noise subsides. Just be careful not to encourage or reinforce anxious behaviours.  
  • Consult your vet: your vet may be able to advise of some natural remedies to keep your pupper calm and anxiety-free this fireworks season.   

In addition, try to make sure your pupper is microchipped and your doors, gates and fences are locked. 

Here’s to you and your pupper safely and calmly enjoying those long-awaited fireworks – Happy New Year! 

Lyka: fresh food delivered

With the hustle and bustle of the holidays, take one less thing off your mind and order a Lyka box for your pup. We take the hassle out of feeding your dog fresh, healthy food – with portion sizes tailored to your dog, there’s no need to worry about any holiday weight! Delivered straight to your door, all you have to do is defrost and watch your pup dig in. For a meal which you know they’ll love, click below to build your Starter Box today.



fresh food for staffy skin itch

Lyka Story: How fresh food helped Buddy ditch the itch

Is there anything worse than having an itch that you just can’t, well…itch? For poor Buddy, this was normal and a part of his daily life.  

Enter Lyka.  

Moving onto an all-natural, fresh food diet has completely changed Buddy’s life. Buddy has now ditched the itch and is enjoying his days chasing seagulls and lapping up the cuddles from his fur mama, Ana. And honestly, we couldn’t think of a better story to end the year on. So much so, that we decided to pay Buddy a visit. That’s right, Angelina and Tim from Team Lyka donned their best Elf and Santa Claus costumes and popped by Buddy’s place to deliver his box in person and spread some Christmas cheer. Not sure if it was Angelina and Tim or his fresh box of pouches that Buddy was most excited to see, but regardless, Buddy loved his surprise visitors and the fact that he had made it onto Santa’s Nice List!  

Meet Buddy, the lovable staffy

Ana had been wanting a furry companion for quite some time, and finally on December 9 2019, she ventured to Blacktown Animal Holding Facility in Sydney, and laid eyes on Buddy for the first time. The connection was instant. Buddy was going to his forever home. After being given away by his previous owners who no longer had the ability to care for him, Ana was excited to be able to give all her love to her new furry family member.  

As Ana discovered, adopting a rescue pup is one of the most challenging yet rewarding experiences you can have. Buddy was shy and unsure, but slowly he came out of his shell, with more of his personality shining through each day.  

“Buddy can’t resist a spot of people watching. He’ll sit for hours at the gate watching the world go by. He also loves doing zoomies around the house – you never know when they’ll happen, but these are the heartwarming moments that show me that I’m doing the right thing and Buddy is truly living his best life.” 

Buddy’s fur mama, Ana 

fresh food for staffy skin itch

Buddy is quite the character and is still mastering the challenging art of fetch. He also loves to play hard to get, shying away the moment Ana pulls her phone out to take a photo. Buddy clearly knows that he’ll get treats to lure him in for that all-important money shot – cheeky little guy!

“There have been so many hilarious moments with Buddy, but not long after getting him, we went to Merimbula for a holiday and Buddy discovered his love of chasing seagulls. Yes, seagulls. He accidentally got off his lead one day, and he ran directly to the park to chase them, it was the funniest thing!” 

Buddy’s fur mama, Ana

Natural diet saving the day!

Whilst Buddy was living his best life and loving spending time with his new family, he was suffering with a skin itch.  

“He had nasty scratches around his eyes, around his legs and all over his stomach. When we first brought him home, he was eating kibble and I noticed that the itching was most severe after mealtimes.” 

Buddy’s fur mama, Ana 

Ana decided to try homemade food. Unfortunately, his condition worsened, with Ana not knowing that Buddy was in fact, allergic to wheat, flour and yeast. After searching the Internet for answers, Ana found Lyka and it was exactly what Buddy needed.  

“Within weeks of starting on Lyka, Buddy’s itching had dramatically improved. Buddy has now been on Lyka for nearly two months, and he has completely stopped itching. His coat is smooth and soft, and so glossy!” 

Buddy’s fur mama, Ana 

fresh food for staffy skin itch

Ana has even noticed an incredible change in his temperament now that the itching has subsided. 

“Buddy wasn’t particularly sociable with other dogs when we first brought him home, but now he’s a regular at doggy daycare and he’s honestly the happiest dog there. It’s just the best!”  

Buddy’s fur mama, Ana 

Lyka: Great for healthy, nourished skin

Lyka is minimally processed and contains high levels of antioxidant-rich, bioactive ingredients that help to improve overall wellbeing. Our recipes are free from inflammatory starches and are packed with unoxidised Omega 3 fats that help to promote a glowing coat and hydrated skin.  

To see how Lyka can help your pup start living their best life, head to our website and build your Starter Box today.  



Lyka Christmas Yum Balls

Don’t forget your four-legged family members when you’re planning the Christmas feast this year. Follow along with our Yum Ball recipe, using Lyka from your delivery plus a few pantry items. This healthy festive treat is perfect for puppers, reindeers or Santa Paws.  

Let’s get cooking!

  1. Scoop your favourite Lyka recipe into a medium bowl 

2. Sprinkle in a binding agent (like vegetable flour or hemp seeds) 

3. Form the mixture into balls  

4. Roll in coconut 

5. Stack yum balls and decorate with your favourite fruit or veg 

6. Serve to pupper! 

Merry Christmas from everyone at Lyka!  

Still looking for a present for your dog?

Give your dog the gift of Lyka this Christmas. Our food is made with fresh, human-grade ingredients, and all of our recipes are designed by our in-house vet Dr Matthew Muir, so you can be sure that you’re giving your dog the present of a lifetime. For a gift that keeps on giving, head to our website and build your Starter Box today.



Dog enjoying the sunny weather at the beach

Keeping your dog healthy in the hot weather

Hot sunny days and balmy nights! Summer is here, but though we might look forward to fun in the sun, the same can’t always be said for our puppers! Australian summers are HOT and that can be a problem for our pups. Though most dogs love getting out in the great outdoors, they all need some extra care from their human parents to keep them safe and healthy throughout the summer months.

Hot tips for keeping your dog safe this summer

Stay hydrated

Dogs can quickly become dehydrated on hot days so take steps to make sure they stay hydrated:

  • First, and most importantly, make sure your dog always has a bowl of fresh water available.
  • Offer your pup fresh water on a hot walk, rather than letting them drink from a murky creek or stagnant puddle.  
  • Some breeds feel the heat more than others – brachycephalic, or short-faced dogs, like pugs or bulldogs may suffer more in the heat, so be extra careful to keep them hydrated.
  • Senior dogs may also be more prone to dehydration so watch out for them on hot days.
  • For overheated puppers, try adding ice cubes to keep their water cool, or simply leave an ice block out for them to lick. You could even try making some cooling frozen summer treats.

Keep cool outdoors

dog hot weather

It’s best to avoid taking your pup out for a walk or run on really hot days, so try to keep them indoors. Dogs can’t stay cool by sweating like humans – instead panting is their cooling mechanism, but in extreme heat that’s often not enough and they can quickly start to suffer. If you are out and about, however, aim to:

  • Stick to the cooler parts of the day for your walks together to prevent overheating – early morning or evening is best.
  • Check the walking surface isn’t too hot for your pupper’s paws as they can get burnt on hot pavements or sand. Be ready to carry your pup over the hottest surfaces, or you could even try fitted booties. You may not see signs of burning until later when they start licking their paws or limping, and if this happens, see your vet as soon as possible. 
  • Consider getting a water mister if your dog has to be outdoors, or you could try a kiddy paddling pool for them to cool off in!

Protect against sunburn

Just like us, your pupper’s skin is sensitive to sunburn – especially where the fur is thin, or the smooth skin on their faces and tummies is exposed:

  • Try a doggy sunscreen on exposed areas such as your dog’s nose and face – dog sunscreens are stickier so will stay on better (human sunscreen can be licked off too easily).

Watch for water dangers

dog hot weather

Cooling off in the water can be great fun, but always take care with your dog in the water and follow the rules:

  • Make sure dogs are permitted at the beach you’re visiting.
  • Keep your pupper on leash if you’re not fully confident of their swimming abilities – you’ll need to be there to help them get out of the water if they seem like they are starting to struggle.
  • When swimming, always keep an eye on your pup and stay close by – enthusiasm sometimes exceeds ability, and not all dogs instinctively know how to swim!

Prevent parasites

Fleas, ticks and worms are all more common in summer, and spending time outdoors means dogs are more exposed to them. In particular, fleas can spread quickly and can be distressing for your pup, and ticks, especially the paralysis tick, can be deadly if your dog isn’t fully protected:

  • Make sure your pup is fully up to date with parasite prevention against fleas, ticks, worms and heartworm all year round.

How can fresh dog food help my dog keep healthy this summer?

Lyka is full of the nutrients your dog needs to keep them active and on the go throughout summer and can be served cold straight out of the fridge, providing a nice, cooling meal at the start or end of the day. Lyka meals also contain around 70% moisture which makes them an easy source of hydration too!


cavalier food

Lyka Story: How fresh food has helped Jax the Cavalier lose weight

When your pup has an underlying health issue, keeping them at a healthy weight becomes even more important. Jax’s fur mama Cathryn found it tough to stop him from gaining weight, which was worrying his vet due to his heart issues. Then, she found Lyka on Instagram, which she decided to try. Now, Jax is at a healthy weight, has no more itchy skin, and Cathryn no longer has to worry that her homemade food isn’t giving her pup all of the nutrients he needs.

Meet Cathryn and her cute cavalier, Jax

After looking after a friend’s Cavalier King Charles Spaniel for a few months, Cathryn and her family knew it was time to get one of their own. Cathryn bought Jax from a reputable breeder, and her family was overjoyed to have their own puppy. Cathryn describes Jax as a shy, yet protective dog, who loves spending time with his family and is always happy. He’s also always keen to play, even when it’s not with his human family:

“We used to live in an area where there were lots of bunnies. You would just say the word ‘bunny’ and he would run his heart out chasing them! He’d never ever catch them though.”

Jax’s fur mama, Cathryn

Jax’s heart issues

cavalier food

Around 8 months after coming home to his family, Jax’s vet picked up a heart murmur, for which he was referred to see a cardiologist. Jax had to undergo a keyhole surgery, after which it was found that he had an enlarged heart which would need to be monitored. With his heart issues, it became more important than ever to make sure that Jax was getting a healthy diet.

Cathryn had been preparing all of Jax’s food for him using vegetables, meat and rice, but knew that she couldn’t make sure he was getting all of the nutrients he needed. She also found it very time consuming to prepare his meals herself. Jax’s vet noticed that he was gaining weight since Cathryn found it hard to determine the right quantity of food for her pup, and was giving him some treats too. Keeping Jax at a healthy weight was critical for his heart health, so Cathryn knew she had to change his diet. Then, Cathryn found Lyka on Instagram.

Jax loves his Lyka

Cathryn was drawn to Lyka as it is an Australian company, and her vet recommended Lyka over the raw foods that Jax had been eating previously. She decided to sign up on the Half Bowl plan to see how Jax would take to the food, but Jax loved his Lyka so much that Cathryn changed to the Full Bowl plan even before he’d finished his first box

“The team at Lyka is so enthusiastic, passionate and supportive. Prior to my first box arriving, Lyka even reached out via email to let me know exactly how to prepare Jax for change of new food. I remember opening the first pouch and it smelt good and appetising. Let’s just say my dog took to the food with relish.”

Jax’s fur mama, Cathryn

Cathryn found out that Jax had a chicken sensitivity, which was causing severely itchy skin. After getting into contact with Team Lyka, she was able to update his plan to only include the Grass-Fed Beef and Lamb recipes, and Jax has had no itchiness since.

Lyka’s custom-sized pouches made it easy for Cathryn and her family to give Jax the correct amount of food every day, so he is now at a healthy weight!

“With home cooking I was definitely overfeeding him. Cavaliers just want to eat all day- honestly we often joke that if we let Jax loose on a buffet he would not stop eating. Lyka is honestly so easy, and the tip to leave a little bit in the pouch to use as a treat during the day is the best! I know that if he just has this pouch of food per day he will be kept at a healthy weight.”

Jax’s fur mama, Cathryn

Cathryn also loves that she no longer has to prepare Jax’s meals herself:

“Lyka uses quality ingredients that include vitamins and nutrients which I did not have the time or experience to include in his food. I love the fact that it’s not dry food; it’s lightly cooked and it actually smells good too. It’s been a huge time saver – seriously, the amount of times I ran out of food for Jax and then had to feed him dry food! It’s so easy that the whole family including the teenage boys knows exactly what to feed him.”

Jax’s fur mama, Cathryn

Love your Lyka too

With portion-controlled pouches, you don’t have to worry about how much food you’re meant to give your dog each day to keep them at a healthy weight. Plus, our foods are high in antioxidants and omega-3 fats, which are great for heart health. To see how Lyka can help your pup (and keep you out of the kitchen), head to our website and build your Starter Box today.



staffy arthritis

Lyka Story: how natural feeding helped Gus the staffy and his joint problems

Since Gus was a puppy, he’s suffered from elbow dysplasia, which occurs when the elbow joint doesn’t develop properly, and was in constant pain. After searching for a better diet for her pup, Gus’ fur mama Clare came across Lyka and decided to see if our fresh and healthy food could help to manage his symptoms. Since transitioning to Lyka, Gus now has more energy, a softer coat, and was even able to halve his painkiller dose!

Meet Gus, the adorable staffy

Clare has had Gus since he was just 8 weeks old, when she took him in from a friend of a friend who’s dog had a litter. Since then, he’s been an important part of her family, and offered up plenty of love:

“Gus is incredibly loyal and very in tune with my feelings and emotions. He’s a great hugger. He insists on sleeping in the bed between my husband and I. He hates it if I fall asleep on the couch and will wake me up insisting I go to bed so he can snuggle.”

Gus’ fur mama, Clare

They also have another pup at home named Cody, and even with Gus’ health conditions they like to make sure he doesn’t miss out on any of the fun:

“We had to buy a dog pram so that he could go on every walk our other dog went on but he looks so embarrassed in the pram as if though his staffy street cred has been ruined.”

Gus’ fur mama Clare

Gus’ joint issues

Gus has suffered from elbow dysplasia in both of his front legs for years, which led to severe pain. By the time he was only 2 years old, he had gone through 3 major surgeries, which meant that he had spent a large portion of his puppy years undergoing crate rehabilitation.

By the time he was 3 years old, Gus also developed arthritis in his front legs, and became lame as a result. He was unable to play or walk, and even had to get a pram so he could join in for outings.

Clare tried several supplements to help improve Gus’ condition, but he still had to take anti-inflammatory medication and opiates to help reduce his symptoms. Then, Clare began to research how Gus’ diet could help, which is when she stumbled across Lyka.

Fresh food to the rescue!

Since starting on Lyka, Clare noticed some immediate changes in Gus:

“We first noticed a change in his energy levels. Then his coat developed a beautiful shine to it and the family was forever petting him because he felt so soft. Then his constant paw licking stopped. His bad gas has also stopped too!”

Gus’ fur mama, Clare

Gus was also carrying a bit of extra weight before starting on Lyka, and thanks to our portion control, he’s now been able to shed a couple kilos. The biggest change that Clare has seen in her pup so far is the improvement in his joint pain. She’s even been able to reduce his medication!

“Last week I halved his opiate dose and I’m pleased to say that, so far, Gus is doing great and had no noticeable lameness. I’m thrilled with the results and I’m so grateful. In the 4.5 years we’ve had Gus, he’s made a huge difference to my own life. I feel I’m repaying him by giving him the very best nutrition I can.”

Gus’ fur mama, Clare

Gus’ recurrent ear infections were also a serious problem before transitioning to fresh food, and Clare is much happier that Gus no longer has to go to the vet every month for them! Since starting on Lyka, Gus has not had a single ear infection, and has been able to avoid surgery to widen his ear canals.

Lyka: great for keeping joints healthy

Lyka is high in omega-3 fatty acids from our ingredients like mackerel and sardines, which are great for reducing inflammation and keeping joints moving smoothly. Our meals are also custom-sized for your dog, designed based on your pup’s weight, activity levels, body shape and age, which means that your pup gets the right amount of calories and nutrients they need. A healthy weight is a key part of reducing stress on your pupper’s joints, so build your Starter Box today to see how our fresh food can help your dog.

 


spoodle

Lyka Story: fresh food for Charlie the senior spoodle

As Charlie got older, he started experiencing severe stomach issues and arthritis, which had his fur papa Alex worried. After spending thousands of dollars on medicated food and seeing no improvement in his health, Alex decided to try Lyka. Now at 12 years old, the spoodle Charlie has more energy than he’s had in years, and his diarrhoea and vomiting have completely stopped.

Meet Alex and his spunky spoodle, Charlie

Alex has had Charlie since he was just 10 years old, and he’s had big personality since he was just a puppy:

“My Dad put him under the Christmas Tree (not in a box). The first few years of him being a pup he was crazy and super energetic!”

Charlie’s fur papa, Alex

Although he suffers from some anxiety, Charlie still knows when to put his foot down:

“He also is quite an anxious dog and stays up all night listening at noises and protecting his owner. He sleeps mostly during the day.

There are so many funny stories but the best one is when I take him to the vet. If you say the word “Vet” to him he will put weight on his body and intentionally not move like he is super scared. When he gets into the vet he tries to hide under seats! When I take him for walks around my local area and we go past the vet he tries to pull me away from it.”

Charlie’s fur papa, Alex
spoodle

Charlie’s health challenges

Charlie’s health problems started with arthritis, which he started to develop when he was around 9 years old and required medication to manage. Then, other issues took a turn for the worst:

“Charlie went to emergency hospital about 2 years ago as he was vomiting really badly and struggling with diarrhoea. We spent over two thousand dollars on medicated diet food and all this stuff to get him better but not much changed. We found that he was super thirsty when eating it due to increased sodium.”

Charlie’s fur papa, Alex

After seeing no improvements even when spending so much on food and treatments, Alex decided to try home cooked food, which was great since Charlie is so picky. Then, he found Lyka.

Healthy, fresh food made all the difference

After starting on Lyka, Alex noticed improvements in Charlie almost immediately:

“Before Lyka he would never run around, and about 3 days after starting on Lyka he started running around like a crazy puppy again! He also was less thirsty all the time.”

Charlie’s fur papa, Alex

His stomach and joint issues have also improved, and Charlie’s now looking better than ever:

“His diarrhoea and vomiting completely stopped, and hasn’t been an issue since. Since starting Lyka, he hasn’t had his arthritis medication at all and has no issues! His coat is super shiny too!”

Charlie’s fur papa, Alex

Lyka: fresh food to keep seniors on the go

Many dogs experience health issues as they get older, so the food you give them is key. Lyka is high in anti-inflammatory omega-3s, which are great for keeping joints healthy, and the high moisture content helps keep senior dogs hydrated. To see how Lyka can help your pup, head to our website and build your Starter Box today.



spoodle

Lyka Story: healthy food helping Teddy the spoodle with his tummy issues

For as long as Chloe could remember, her spoodle Teddy had battled constant vomiting and reflux, as well as runny poos. At almost 10 years old, she wanted to make sure that Teddy could maintain his active lifestyle as he entered his senior years, so she decided to try a change of diet for her picky pup. Since trying Lyka, Teddy has loads of energy, and his tummy issues have completely disappeared.

Meet Chloe and her sweet spoodle, Teddy

Chloe has had Teddy since he was a puppy, and he seemed to know that Chloe was the fur mama for him right away:

“Teddy chose me. We had another little puppy picked out, but he was bounding up at the gate like a mad man and practically leapt into my arms when it was opened for him. From that moment we knew we were meant for each other.”

Teddy’s fur mama, Chloe

Chloe is a teacher, and takes Teddy to work with her every day, where he has made plenty of friends:

“I will often turn around and he is sitting on a student’s lap soaking up a cuddle or laying his head on the table paying attention. He will also often just wander off down the hall and visit various classrooms and the office staff. Nothing funnier than when you hear his little feet sprinting down the hallways.”

Teddy’s fur mama, Chloe
spoodle

Teddy is also known for his affectionate nature, and love for bubbles:

“Teddy is OBSESSED with bubbles. And I mean obsessed. He will chase them for hours. He also licks constantly. He will just lick the air. The vet said the only two ways a dog can show love is to wag their tail and lick, so I’m pretty okay with it. He obviously just has a lot of love to give!”

Teddy’s fur mama, Chloe

Teddy’s gastro grumbles

During the years he was eating dry and wet food, Teddy had experienced regular reflux after meals, and even used to vomit up his whole meal regularly. He was also an extremely fussy eater, and would not eat food from his own bowl, although he would gladly take leftovers from Chloe’s own plate. No matter what food she tried, Teddy would still not want to eat.

As Teddy was approaching 10 years old, Chloe also wanted to give him the best possible chance at living a long, healthy life. As they live an active lifestyle, Chloe also wanted to make sure that she was giving her pup all the nutrients he needed to keep him fuelled for walks and activities, and to keep his bones and organs healthy.

spoodle

Chloe decided to try cooking Teddy’s meals herself to make sure he was eating high-quality ingredients, as she was worried that the food recommended by the vet was too highly processed. However, as a vegetarian, she struggled with cooking up the meat for her dog. Then, she found Lyka:

“Lyka stood out to be as it was highly personalised, I loved the family feel of the business and the ethos behind why Anna created it for Lyka. Many of her frustrations echoed mine. I found the information completely transparent, and could see the genuine passion all the Lyka team have for pupper health. This made me feel really safe trusting them with Ted’s nutrition. I also loved supporting a strong female led Australian small business.”

Teddy’s fur mama, Chloe

The transition to fresh food

spoodle

Since transitioning onto Lyka, Teddy now has no more issues with vomiting and reflux, much to Chloe’s relief:

“His reflux and vomiting issues are COMPLETELY GONE! He genuinely has not had one full or bile vomit since we made the switch. I’m honestly amazed. This in itself would be enough for me to rave from the rooftops about Lyka. Ted often has really loud and bubbly digestive noises, these have completely stopped. He would vomit bile at least once a day and completely vomit up his food at least 5-10 times a month. This has completely stopped. His poos are now regular and always appear much easier for him to go. They aren’t runny at all anymore.”

Teddy’s fur mama, Chloe

Not only has his tummy health improved, Chloe has also seen improvements in his fur and breath, and noticed how much energy he has:

“Being a spoodle, his hair can get matted when it is long, I have noticed he can go longer in between grooms now as his hair is so silky, he’s not getting as many knots. His breath is far less smelly, which is a HUGE thing given how much he licks and wants to be all up in your grill. He is still able to keep up with marathon length walks/runs with me, and at nearly 10 seems like a little energiser bunny that could just keep going and going. The vet is always shocked when she realises how old he actually is.”

Teddy’s fur mama, Chloe

Lyka: for puppies, seniors and every dog in between

Older puppers like Teddy can often face health issues and a lack of energy, but with the right diet, you can help them live their best life. With their increased energy levels and active lifestyles, many of our older Lyka pups get mistaken for being much younger. It’s never too late to start giving your dog the benefits of fresh food. Order a Starter Box today to see how it helps your pupper thrive.



italian greyhound

Lyka Story: Louie’s journey back to health with fresh food

When Louie developed IBD after some separation anxiety, his lack of appetite led to serious weight loss, lack of energy and a poor coat. Wanting to get him off his bland diet of boiled chicken and pumpkin, his fur mama Gemma decided to try Lyka. After wolfing down his first bowl and demanding more food ever since, Louie is now back to a healthy weight.

Meet Louie, the gorgeous Italian Greyhound

After spending a lot of time researching breeds and breeders, Gemma decided an Italian Greyhound was the perfect dog for her and her family. She brought Louie home two years ago, and calls it the best decision she’s ever made:

“He is my shadow, never not by my side or on my lap (safe to say he is in absolute doggy heaven during the Covid working from home phase).”

Louie’s fur mama Gemma
italian greyhound

Gemma loves his funny personality, and tells us he has some unusual characteristics which make him extra unique:

“We also call him cat-dog as he likes to be perched up high, ALWAYS seeking the sun just like a cat. As Italian Greyhounds have little to no hair and low body fat, they LOVE laying in the sun and being under blankets (even if it’s a 40 degree summer day). There is not a daily walk that goes by where Louie gets away without being called a ‘prancer’. Due to his (extra) long legs he truly prances and bounces around when he walks and he makes everyone passing by smile, laugh or comment on his extravagant walking and fashion style. We love how he can make someone’s day so easily!”

Louie’s fur mama Gemma
italian greyhound

Louie’s diet dilemmas

Gemma originally gave Louie a raw, BARF diet. When Gemma went overseas for a couple weeks, Louie experienced separation anxiety, which led to him experiencing nausea and diarrhoea almost daily, with a complete loss of apetite.

“After months of research, trying different vets, specialists, traumatic vet visits, nausea injections, testing/trialling and eliminating different foods recommended by the vet, Louie was diagnosed with IBD.”

Louie’s fur mama Gemma

While taking antibiotics to treat an infection in his gut, Gemma decided to stick to a home-cooked diet of boiled chicken and pumpkin, as it was the only meal he could eat and mostly keep down. This bland diet did not offer all of the nutrients Louie needed, so Gemma slowly started adding in sardines and offal. This did not help Louie’s fussiness, as he was still not enjoying dinner time and would ignore meals until he became desperately hungry. Then, Gemma came across Lyka:

“I was super impressed with Lyka’s website, quality of ingredients, the ability to cater for dogs with dietary issues and great customer service. Sceptical at first (as Louie was now an expert as turning his nose up at everything I served him), I purchased the Starter Box. To my surprise he scoffed down his first ever Lyka bowl and the rest is history. He now DEMANDS mealtime!”

Louie’s fur mama Gemma

Since starting on a Lyka diet, Louie looks and feels much better than before, and has gained 2kg. He is now a healthy 7kg!

“The major change we saw was the weight gain. Louie had lost just over 1kg during his illness (this is a large percentage for an Italian Greyhound with naturally low body fat and only being 5kg). As you can see in the after photo, he is looking great now! His skin and coat have also improved a great deal. You’ll notice in his before photo, the hair was thin and dull and has now come back nice and thick.”

Louie’s fur mama Gemma

His mood around other dogs has also improved, and he’s even been able to make some new friends:

“His energy levels have increased massively at the dog park and in social settings (still sleeps most of the day at home, as all Italian Greyhounds do). During Louie’s sickness, he became anti-social around other dogs as he evidently didn’t have the energy to burn, but seems he has a lot more energy now when socialising with other doggos and more inclined to make new friends.”

Louie’s fur mama Gemma
italian greyhound

Love your Lyka like Louie

For Italian Greyhounds like Louie, keeping weight on is especially important, and can be difficult if they face even the most minor health conditions. Enter Lyka: with pouches customised to your dog’s weight, activity levels and body shape, you can be sure your pup is getting all of the nutrients and energy they need to be their best selves. Try a Starter Box today, and see the fresh food difference for yourself.



apartment dog

10 Apartment Friendly Dog Breeds

The traditional picture of the family dog out playing in the back yard is changing. More of us are living in apartments these days, with smaller space and limited access to the outdoors. The great news for those of us who do live in an apartment and want a pupper in our lives, is that more and more are becoming dog friendly. We’ve picked the top 10 dog breeds that we think are suited to apartment living. Those that are more independent, on the lower end of the energy scale and not known to be big barkers make it onto our list!

Here are Lyka’s top 10 apartment friendly dog breeds:

Bichon Frise

Just because they’re small doesn’t mean these playful and gentle dogs aren’t active. But their size does make them suited to apartment living, and as they’re not known for barking, they are generally neighbour-friendly! The non-allergenic Bichon coat doesn’t tend to shed either, so you won’t need to constantly vacuum carpets and furniture. With a low tendency for drooling and snoring, you can get up close to this pupper – day and night!

Brussels Griffon

Big on personality, short on size, Brussels Griffons are cheerful, affectionate and curious. Take a look into their big, black eyes, see the fringed beard and moustache and it’s hard not to smile at the comical Griffon. They are moderately active, but don’t need much room to romp, so are suitable for apartment living. However, they do have a sensitive nature and like to stick closely to their special human. So, if you work from home, Griffons could be the ideal choice for you.

Bulldogs

apartment dog

Thickset and sturdy, bulldogs make their way onto our list as they just love to lounge on the couch. Under that wrinkly skin, English Bulldogs are full of muscle, weighing upwards of 22kg, but give them a brisk stroll and they’ll thank you by being happy to chill after. Bulldogs are also dogs of few words, which should keep the neighbours happy, and whether you go for a Frenchie or an English Bulldog, they’ll happily adapt to apartment living – whether you’re single, a couple or with kids.

Chihuahua

The national symbol of Mexico and weighing as little as 1kg, the Chihuahua is a tiny dog with a massive ‘big dog’ personality. Loyal, charming and super cute, they are the perfect city pet and you can pretty much take them anywhere. But, as is often the case with tiny puppers, they can get away with mischief, so make training a priority. You’ll need to if you want to get on with the neighbours in the next apartment, as chihuahuas can be yappy left to their own devices.

Fun fact: Chihuahuas are among the oldest breeds of the Americas – their pictures appear in ancient paintings in Mexico!

Chinese Crested

Spotty pink skin, spiky hairdo and feathery socks and tail, you’ll either think the Chinese Crested is the sweetest, or strangest, pupper you’ve ever seen! Whether hairless or the other variety, the ‘powderpuff’ Crested with its silky coat, they make great little dogs for apartment living – they’re affectionate, playful and devoted to their human. With no hair comes the bonus of no doggy odour and of course no shedding which makes them pretty low maintenance. Just remember to protect their delicate skin from the sun.

Fun fact: Cresteds used to travel the seas on Chinese trading vessels, keeping boats free of diseased rats along the way.

Greyhound

apartment dog

You don’t need to be small to be suited to apartment living. Take the greyhound – built for powerful speed with their aerodynamic skull, muscular legs and shock-absorbing pads on their feet, but at home, they’re your typical lounge lizard! They’re calm, placid and very quiet, enjoying a couple of good walks a day, but loving to run when they get the chance. Only needing minimal grooming, they’re not particularly smelly dogs – so less time bathing and brushing, more time enjoying your time together.

Maltese

Intelligent, gentle, playful and full of mischief! Maltese are great little family dogs, that can be stubborn and use their charm to get their own way. So it’s important to stand your ground and follow through on training to avoid poor manners with your little Maltie!  They get bonus points for being low shedders and though they make good watchdogs, you may want to make barking control part of their training if you want to avoid grumpy neighbours.

Poodles (especially Toy and Miniature)

Choose your size – standard, miniature or toy! However small or large, there’s an intelligent and lively pupper beneath that tight curly coat. It’s the low-allergen coat and ease of training that’s responsible for all of the ‘oodle’ cross breeds, but the pure-bred poodle has so much to give – loving and playful, toy and miniature poodles especially adapt happily to apartment living.  Just make sure you train them so they don’t bark at every footstep outside your door to keep you and your neighbours happy too.

Pug

Pugs are highly adaptable, happy to be country or city dwellers, single parent puppers or part of a big family, the only child or part of the pack. Small and solid, they don’t take up too much space, don’t need too much exercise and are very sociable – just make sure you don’t overfeed as they’re prone to weight gain. Extra points go to for pugs for not being known as yappy puppers! Just loyal, loving and happy to chill – as long as there’s a lap to sit on!

Fun fact: The pug was once a companion to Chinese Emperors and pets of Buddhist monasteries in Tibet

Shih Tzu

apartment dog

Once bred to spend their days in royal palaces and pampered by emperors and their families, it makes sense that Shih Tzu puppers are happy to live in apartments rather than be out chasing balls in big backyards. Sit down and there will soon be a Shih Tzu on your lap, so for a loving and constant companion this is the breed for you. If you choose to keep their beautiful silky coat long, make sure grooming is part of your routine – they are low shedders, but don’t expect no shedding at all. 

Fun fact: Originating over 1000 years ago from Tibet, ‘Shih Tzu’ translates from Mandarin to ‘Little Lion’.

Lyka: nutrition for all puppers

Good nutrition for puppers living in apartments is as important as ever – even more so to help ensure your pup stays lean and healthy. Portion control helps prevent excessive weight gain in less active dogs, whilst high quality nutrients and protein sources support a healthy digestion for more compatible, close living – that’s less flatulence for starters!

Why not build your Starter Box now?



Lyka Pet Food

Creative ways to feed Lyka

Eating out of the same bowl day after day can get a little repetitive, no matter how tasty the food is. We’ve asked a few members of the Lyka pack how they keep mealtimes interesting for their puppers, and we got some very fun responses!

Not only are these exciting ways to switch up how your dog’s food is served; they act as great ways to slow down your pup’s eating if you find that they get through their meals too quickly.

Beren with his lick mat

Beren’s fur mama loves to put some of his dinner in a lick mat.

Bear with his Moo Tube

Bear’s fur mama fills a moo tube with Lyka, and Bear can’t wait to start munching away!

Monty with his Kong toy

Monty’s fur mama, sticks a Kong toy full of our Free-Range Chicken Bowl in the freezer, a great way to enjoy Lyka in the hotter months.

How do you like to feed your Lyka?

Inspired to change up your pupper’s dinner? Try one of these tips to give your dog our fresh food in a new way using a fun toy or treat. If you’ve got a different trick that you like to use, we’d love to see it! Tag us on Instagram or send us an email showing us your creative dinners for a chance to appear on our socials.

Lyka: fun all on its own

Serving your dog’s food doesn’t have to just be from a bowl – changing things up at mealtimes can be a great way to give pupper something fun to do, with the reward of our tasty, fresh food! However, not every meal needs a toy: simply serve up Lyka in your dog’s bowl and let them dig in. They’ll enjoy the great taste of our meals, and you’ll enjoy the peace of mind that comes from knowing you’re giving your dog our vet-designed, complete and balanced meals. Want to know more? Head to our website, and start building your box today.



puppy farm

Why shouldn’t you buy from a puppy farm, and how can you spot one?

Every puppy deserves to go to a good home and to be loved. But though it’s hard to resist a puppy that’s just the right breed with the brindle pattern or chocolate colour you’ve always wanted, it’s also important not to support puppy farms by buying from one. Buying a puppy from a puppy farm supports their business which is not about putting dogs’ welfare first – it’s simply about making money. Not only are the poor little puppers they bring into the world at risk of behavioural and health issues, the mothers especially are treated as breeding machines, with no love or concern for their wellbeing, things that we at Lyka care passionately about.

So, what is a puppy farm?

Puppy farms (also known as puppy mills) are intensive dog breeding facilities. There are a number of reasons why they fail to meet the needs of their puppers:

  • The conditions in puppy farms are usually poor and don’t meet the behavioural, social and/or physiological needs of their puppies.
  • They usually operate on a large scale, with many litters and several breeds, however smaller operations also have inadequate conditions.
  • Being raised in a puppy farm can lead to long term health and behavioural issues

Why should I avoid a puppy farm?

Puppy farms are mass-production breeding facilities that aim to produce as many dogs as possible for the minimum cost, maximising the profit for the people that run them. As a result, they can feature:

  • Overcrowding
  • Unhygienic conditions
  • Extreme confinement
  • Inadequate care (including lack of veterinary attention)

Puppies raised in puppy farms can suffer long-term health and behavioural problems throughout their lives. You may think that buying from a puppy farm is rescuing a dog, but in reality, it is just incentivising the breeders to continue. If you’re keen on rescuing a dog, consider adopting one from a shelter.

How can I spot a puppy farm?

Look out for these tell-tale signs. Puppy farms have become very clever at disguising what they really are, but here are a few tips to help:

  • Advertised online:  Puppy farms usually advertise puppies through online platforms, such as Facebook Marketplace and Gumtree, or they may sell pups at car boot sales and markets.
  • No access to parents:  Puppy farms may prevent you from meeting the parents (especially the mother). It’s such a hard life being a mumma in a puppy farm. They are often made to breed in every heat cycle, even after just giving birth, so if they’re already pregnant you may not be allowed to see them. If you are introduced to the mother, look for signs that they’ve just given birth, such as enlarged breasts and clear protectiveness of her puppies, to ensure they are they actual mother of the puppies. Always ask to meet the parents of a puppy – a responsible breeder will introduce you.
  • Pups less than 8 weeks old:  Cute as they are, you should never buy a pup younger than 8 weeks because separation from the mother can lead to serious developmental issues. Responsible breeders may let you meet the puppy and accept a down payment, but will never let you take them home before they turn 8 weeks. 
  • No proof of veterinary care: Puppy farms will often cut costs by avoiding vets, so their pups miss important vaccination deadlines and can have undetected health issues. Responsible breeders will have evidence of vet visits and may have done further testing for inheritable diseases.
  • Signs of poor health: Dogs from puppy farms may show symptoms of poor health, such as a dull coat, poor skin condition or wounds, worms, sniffles and runny eyes, limping or coughing.  If when you go to see a puppy and most of the dogs are sleeping or look lethargic, it can suggest poor attention and hygiene.
  • Behavioural problems: Dogs from puppy farms may have lived in isolation or missed out on being socialised. This can make them more aggressive or alternatively, shy. These pups are harder to train in the long term, and studies have shown that even as adults, they can have more difficult temperaments.
  • Harder to housetrain: Dogs that have lived in poor, unsanitary conditions may have overcome their natural aversion to their own faeces and urine. Therefore, pups from puppy farms often arrive with bad habits such as ‘coprophagia’ (eating their own poo) and may be harder to toilet train.
  • Checks: Genuine breeders can be checked. Rules differ across different states but in NSW, for example, any advertisement for a dog needs an I.D. number (a microchip number, a breeder identification number, or a rehoming organisation number). This way they can be searched in the NSW Pet Registry, or the business checked using the breeder identification number.
  • Genuine breeders will ask about you: A responsible breeder should ask you questions about your home and lifestyle to ensure that you are a good match for a particular dog and breed. So, how big is your back yard? How much will you walk the dog? How much time do you spend at home? These are the type of questions you can expect about your lifestyle.

They’ll also ask you to sign some paperwork, and responsible breeders will normally include a clause about being able to return the dog if you are unable or find you’re unsuitable to care for them. By law, your puppy should be microchipped when they are 12 weeks old or when sold, whichever comes first.

  • If in doubt, ask questions. Ask the breeder how many dog breeds they have – if it’s more than 2 or 3, it can be a sign of a puppy farmer. Multiple litters should also ring alarm bells. Some puppy farms will place a litter with a family a day or two before your appointment to fool you into thinking it’s their own dog’s puppies. So, ask them questions, and if possible, ask the children of the home as they are less likely to lie! Ask questions like, “How long have the puppies been here for?” and “How many litters has the mum produced?”
  • What is your gut saying? Puppy farms can be sophisticated operations and may try to make you feel like they are responsible breeders. If in doubt, try phoning a local vet to get their experienced opinion. 

Where should I get a dog from instead?

Adopt!

Adopting is a great way to bring a pupper into your home. It can be a testing time training a new puppy, even from a breeder, so adopting an adult dog may be ideal for you. It can be a real joy giving an older dog a forever home and they’ll love you for it. Be aware, that adopted dogs have had a past life, which may have involved difficult experiences, and some may have very specific needs or take time to develop trust in a new family.

Responsible breeder

If you’re confident that the breeder you’ve found operates safely and responsibly, they can be a good option for you. While adoption is a great route, it isn’t for everyone, and for some people who don’t spend too much time at home, or those who have other pets or children around, a breeder may be a better way to go.

Searching for more info?

Debra Tranter, the founder of Oscar’s Law, recommends doing your research, asking the right questions, visiting where the puppy was born and seeing how it interacts with its mum and littermates.

“Any red flags or warning signs, walk away and report to authorities.  Don’t reward puppy farmers with your cash; it’s simply providing them an incentive to keep doing what they are doing”

Debra Tranter

Love your pupper with Lyka

Our puppers’ welfare is at the heart of what Lyka stands for. Nutrition is just one part of raising a healthy and happy pup and we’ve got that covered. Starting your pup on Lyka sets them on a journey through life that’s filled with love, health and happiness. See the full range at our website and order your Starter Box today.



boxer dog

Lyka Story: How fresh food helped keep Annalie’s head tremors at bay

When Sarah’s boxer Annalie began to face health issues, she started home cooking her meals for her, which offered improvements in her health, even though it was time consuming. However, when Sarah needed to head overseas, she knew she couldn’t ask her friends to cook Annalie’s meals, and fortunately she came across Lyka on Instagram. When caught in Peru during the coronavirus lockdown, Sarah never had to worry about Annalie’s nutrition thanks to Lyka, which gave her one less thing to worry about. Even after returning home, Sarah has never looked back.

Meet Sarah and her bouncy boxer, Annalie

Sarah bought her lovely boxer Annalie from a breeder in Charlton, QLD. Her name was originally Anna, after the character in Frozen, but Sarah added the ‘-lie’ to the end to make name recognition easier, as well as adding a new meaning: “Annalie means freedom!” She also has an adorable nickname: Chops, short for ‘Cheeky Chops’.

Annalie is known for her cheeky behaviour, and loves learning and showing off new tricks – she can roll over, fist bump, perform a trust fall, and even open a sliding door by herself!

Sarah describes her dog as “too smart for her own good”:

“She’s ball obsessed, and a bit of an addict – when you’re on the phone she sometimes treats this as a cue to get the ball ready and demands you throw it for her, whether you’re inside or outside. She’s a Leo, so she’s very persistent: everything’s always about her!”

Annalie’s fur mama, Sarah

Annalie’s health woes: her start on a fresh diet

While on a dry food diet, Annalie started to develop head tremors, and was gaining weight rapidly even though she was always hungry. Sarah changed her onto a different dry food, but her head tremors got more severe, and Annalie was still hungry.

Around 3 years ago, Sarah started cooking all of her pup’s meals from scratch, preparing chicken, rice and vegetables for Annalie. Even though this was time consuming, Sarah continued because Annalie’s tremors finally stopped. Sarah also added on supplements such as kelp to boost the nutritional value of her home-cooked food.

Getting fresh food delivered: trying Lyka

When Sarah was embarking on her travels through Europe and South America, she asked some friends to take care of Annalie, but knew that it was too much to ask for them to home-cook her meals too. Still wanting to give her pup the benefits of freshly cooked meals, Sarah decided to try Lyka, and Annalie was able to transition with no issues:

“The recipes really resonated with me, and I loved the use of ingredients such as slippery elm. Her coat is still very shiny, and the portion control really helped with keeping Annalie’s weight down at her ideal size.”

Annalie’s fur mama, Sarah

When the coronavirus lockdown began, Sarah was in Peru, and was stuck there for 3 weeks.

“It really helped that Lyka was available to contact over Facebook, as I had really poor internet connection in Peru and needed to change the delivery address.”

Annalie’s fur mama, Sarah

After finally being able to return to Australia, Sarah had to quarantine in Melbourne for another 2 weeks, but she never had to worry about Annalie running out of fresh food.

Sarah still feeds her pup Lyka instead of preparing her meals herself, as it saves her all those hours of cooking and ensures that Annalie gets vet-designed nutrition to keep her looking and feeling her best.

Lyka: getting your pup the nutrition they need

Our recipes are designed by our in-house vet, Dr Matthew Muir, to ensure that they are complete and balanced for all dogs. We design our portions based on each dog’s weight and activity level, and our customer service team is always available to offer a helping hand, wherever you might be. Head to lyka.com.au to read more about the fresh ingredients that go into our pouches, and order your Starter Box today.



Mt Coot-tha dog friendly walk

Mt Coot-tha – A dog-friendly Brisbane bush walk

Everyone in Brisbane knows Mt Coot-tha. With a name meaning ‘place of wild honey’, it offers spectacular views of the city skyline, yet despite the handy bus links and plenty of parking, you’ll easily leave the crowds behind as you explore its endless walking tracks. The mountain is steeped in history, and offers an amazing variety of cool, shady paths, great picnic areas, diverse wildlife – all just 5km (15 minutes’ drive) from the city centre.

Best of all, Mt Coot-tha is dog-friendly, so your best friend is welcome, just as long as they stay on a lead and you clear up after them.

Entire length: 4km-5km

Where: Mount Coot-tha, Bardon (5km west of Brisbane CBD)

Terrain: Hard surface on main path

Difficulty: Easy to Moderate

Features: Multiple car parks, BBQ facilities, Toilets, Water, Lookouts, Café/Restaurant

Where to start?

A great track to explore with your pup is to the summit of Mt Coot-tha, starting from the JC Slaughter Falls picnic area, which can be accessed from the Bardon (east) side of Sir Samuel Griffith Drive.  This walk is about 2km each way, so allow at least 1 hour for the return journey, or longer if you plan to stop.

Parking at the JC Slaughter Falls picnic area should be easy if you avoid peak hours (it’s busier at the Summit).  If you’re planning to walk in the rain, or it’s been damp recently, then pack sturdy boots as it can be wet and muddy off the track – and it’s a good idea to take insect repellent if you’re picnicking.

Setting off

Mt Coot-tha dog friendly walk
© Brisbane City Council 2016

Unless it’s raining, the falls themselves are usually barely more than a trickle, so you may decide they’re not worth the detour. Instead, follow the track signposted towards Summit Lookout, and enjoy the nature all around you.  The path winds upwards alongside a gully through bushland, with glimpses of the city appearing through the trees.  

As you climb, you’re surrounded by heritage listed forest which is home to 450 native plant species and 370 wildlife species (one reason not to let your pupper off the lead).  As well as the usual kookaburras, parrots and cockatoos, you might see or hear owls, microbats or even an eagle. 

Brisbane can be hot and humid in summer, but thankfully there are plenty of picnic spots with drinking water bubblers along the way, so bring a bowl to offer your pup a drink – they might also want to cool off in one of the creeks along the way!

The half way point

When you reach the road at the summit, cross over and turn left to reach the viewpoint.  Sitting 250m above the city, Mount Coot-tha offers panoramic views stretching from Moreton Bay and the City round to the Tweed volcano, Main Range, Mount Barney and Flinders Peak.  As well as the lookout, you’ll find the Kuta Café, Gift Shop and toilet facilities (the Summit Restaurant and Bar is heritage listed and great for special occasions).

Mt Coot-tha dog friendly walk
© Brisbane City Council 2016

Enjoy the amazing views, and perhaps reward yourself with a takeaway coffee before setting off back down the trail.  If you and your pupper still have energy to burn, half-way down you can take the Hoop Pine Track, marked on your left as you descend.  This adds about 700m to your journey, before you rejoin the Summit track back to your car.

Fancy a return trip?

If you’ve enjoyed this walk, there’s heaps more to explore in the area, so try any of the tracks starting from the other car parks around Sir Samuel Griffith Drive.  For many of Brisbane’s residents, Mount Coot-tha is one of the city’s best-kept secrets. Now you and pup can be in on it too!

Lyka: fresh food to give your pup energy for every walk

At Lyka Pet Food, we make human-grade food to give your dog complete and balanced nutrition from fresh ingredients. Head to our website to see what we put into into every meal, and order your Starter Box today.



dog low blood sugar

Lyka Story: how fresh food helped Bono the Staffy x Australian Cattle Dog beat his low blood sugar

When a dog goes through a traumatic experience, it can be difficult to get them back to good health, both mentally and physically. Bono’s fur mama Christina learnt this first-hand, when after being mauled by another dog, her Staffy x Australian Cattle dog Bono became suspicious of many things, including his food. When his pickiness and lack of appetite led to weight loss and dangerously low blood sugar, Christina decided to try Lyka. Now, Bono is energetic, happy and healthy, and finally has healthy blood sugar and iron levels.

Meet Christina and her Staffy x Cattle dog, Bono

Bono is a Staffy x Australian Cattle dog who loves sleeping (especially on people) and long car rides. Christina came across a photo of Bono on a rescue Instagram page, and knew he was perfect for her straight away:

“My last dog had passed away a couple of months prior and I wasn’t coping with the loss very well. I follow a lot of different rescue pages on social media and a photo of Bono came up with his foster carer where he was laying across her lap and she was holding him like a baby. I instantly fell in love with him, so I adopted him.”

Bono’s fur mama, Christina

Although he loves being inside the car for long drives, Christina learned that he only loves the back seat:

“One day we put him on the back of the ute and strapped him in thinking as a cattle breed, he would just know how to do it. Within seconds, he jumped off and was dangling there in his harness like a pendulum wagging his tail, looking at me like MUM where are you going? We hadn’t even got into the car to go yet!”

Bono’s fur mama, Christina

Bono’s health troubles

Last April, Bono was a victim of a vicious mauling attack from another dog, and had to have surgery, which led to a long recovery period. He became distrustful of his food and of other dogs. His pickiness became severe, with Bono refusing all vegetables, and eventually not eating at all unless Christina hand-fed him mince. Visits to the vet and blood tests revealed that his iron and blood sugar levels were low, and Christina felt overwhelmed by the amount of possible causes for his health problems, which were making Bono lethargic and have very little appetite:

“The next day I researched ‘hypoglycaemia’ which is what the vet kept saying on the phone. The disease is so difficult to diagnose and manage in dogs, not to mention expensive. Feeling disheartened and not knowing whether to jump in and go ahead with more testing or not, I ended up deciding to try Lyka to see if I could help him without medications.”⁠

Bono’s fur mama, Christina

Finding the right food

After doing some research, Christina was shocked at what she found out about the dog food industry:

“While waiting for Bono’s results, I think I spent all night one night researching every possible thing you could give your dog for a diet and the science behind it. There is so little science and statistics about dog food, it was unbelievable. Eventually I found Lyka on a Google search and read absolutely everything on the website and it looked like the best thing I had found yet so I ordered the Sensitive Chicken Bowl.”

Bono’s fur mama, Christina

The first time Bono tried the Sensitive Chicken Bowl, he loved it, but within a couple days he refused the eat even that. Christina then decided the try the other Lyka recipes, and there she finally found something that Bono loved:

“His first normal Chicken pouch he was unsure about and I had to stand with him while he ate it, but he ate most of it without me hand feeding him! Then he tried the Beef pouch… I could tell he didn’t want to like it, but he ate the whole thing and licked the bowl clean. When he tried the Lamb is when I really knew Lyka was the best decision I ever made for him. He INHALED it and then begged for more. I had never seen him beg for any food other than cheese!”

Bono’s fur mama, Christina

Bono’s bouncing back

Bono’s first blood test after trying Lyka came back with great results, and Christina was happy that he was finally getting healthy again. Bono has steadily gained back the weight he lost from not eating, and has more energy to get active again:

“He enjoys his walks, even the long 5-10km ones I take him on, and no longer is sore or has to sleep for a long time after.”

Bono’s fur mama, Christina

Christina has seen a huge difference in his mood, and no longer has to hand feed him his food:

“He eats his Lyka now every night with zero fuss on the Lamb days and little fuss on the Beef days. I rarely give him the Chicken as he just doesn’t seem to like it as much (maybe brings back memories of his old bland food). I do however rotate through the different types to keep his variety there. He also has so much more energy, wags his tail like he used to and when I look at his face, I just think he is so much happier. Even without those added personality advantages I would keep using Lyka because it means I don’t have to cook his meals and then hand feed it to him!”

Bono’s fur mama, Christina

Lyka: something for every pupper

Our variety of recipes at Lyka means that your pup is bound to find a Bowl that they love. For picky puppers, we recommend starting with as many of our recipes as you can, and letting your pup discover for themselves what they like.  

While we don’t offer our Sensitive Chicken recipe anymore, we still have recipes which could be great for pickier pups like Bono. For some dogs, the simplicity of the limited ingredient range in our Turkey Bowl is a great starting point to get them to be more adventurous. For other pups like Bono, the big flavours in our Grass-Fed Beef or Lamb Bowls are what they need to start getting excited for their mealtimes. Head to our website to find out more about our recipes, and order your Starter Box today. 



How to groom your dog at home

There’s nothing quite like the feeling you get when your pupper returns from the groomers, freshly washed, styled and smelling fragrant. Your pup’s happy too, with trimmed nails, clean tidy coat and a clear view of the world.

But if you’re finding the intervals between grooming appointments are stretching out, have you thought about doing it yourself? Even though you might not achieve dog grooming salon results, there are lots of good reasons to groom your dog regularly – and with our current social distancing and self-isolating situation this could be the perfect time to start.

So why is dog grooming important?

It builds bonding

Brushing, detangling, checking ears and around the eyes is really getting up close and personal. The more you do it, the more the trust builds and soon your pupper will get used to being touched, even in sensitive areas. Dogs appreciate routine so they’ll start to enjoy the grooming ritual. They’ll soon learn that you’re doing it because you care, and they’ll feel better for it too.

It’s a health check

With regular grooming, you get the chance to feel for any lumps and bumps and you become more in tune with changes in your pup’s condition. You’ll know if their fur is lush or thinning, you get to feel whether they’re keeping to a healthy weight and it’s a great time to check nails, ears and eyes – and take a peek at their teeth too.

Let’s groom!

1. Brush first

It’s easiest to detangle and brush before bathing, carefully snipping out any knotted fur if necessary. Long haired dogs benefit from weekly brushing, short haired pups less often. The type of brush you use also depends on your dog, with a metal pin brush being preferred for a long coat. Brushing regularly makes washing and other grooming steps easier.

2. Bath time

There’s no set advice for how often to bath your pupper and it really depends on them. If they smell their normal doggy self and don’t appear dirty, then you can skip the bath. But if they’ve rolled in something smelly, or are muddy or dirty, then they probably need a bath – let’s face it, your pupper’s going to get a little more love and cuddles when they’re clean.

Getting ready: Avoid having your dog wait around while you prepare for their bath – check the water is a comfortable temperature and have the shampoo and towel at hand. Using a washcloth helps prevent overwetting your pupper’s head, and make sure you use a specialised dog shampoo (the pH of your dog’s skin is different to yours so don’t share shampoos). When everything is ready, go fetch pup and off you go.

Step 1: Wet their coat all the way to the skin

Step 2: Massage in the recommended amount of shampoo

Step 3: Rinse thoroughly, and then if needed you can apply a hypoallergenic conditioner before rinsing again.

Step 4: Towel dry and then leave to air dry if possible – dogs don’t tend to like noisy blow dryers.

3. Body check

Ears

If your dog has no apparent problems with their ears (they’re not rubbing or scratching them, or shaking their head) then they are best left alone. If ears smell unpleasant or your pup seems bothered by them, then it’s a good idea to get them checked by a vet.

Eyes

Check your pup’s eyes look clear and healthy. Hair can obscure their vision and be irritating, so if you feel confident to do it, carefully trim using blunt-nosed safety scissors and avoid touching the eyes. Ask your vet clinic for help if you need it.

Teeth

Regular brushing will help prevent tooth decay and keep your pupper’s breath smelling fresher. Start brushing their teeth at a young age to help keep their pearly whites clean and healthy – dog-friendly chew toys and dental chews can help too.

Paws

If grass seeds or burrs have become trapped in the fur between your pup’s footpads, remove carefully and trim the fur if necessary. Check nails and if you feel confident, trim a little. Ask your vet to show you how to do it safely.

Tips for a happy dog grooming experience

  • Don’t expect too much too soon – start with simple handling and a little brushing, to full body brushing and onto a bath
  • Keep grooming sessions as short as possible
  • If pupper’s overly frisky, a walk or active game beforehand can help them use up some of that extra energy
  • Remain calm, be patient and take things slowly so they feel relaxed and comfortable
  • Give plenty of praise and speak soothingly 
  • Have tasty dog treats on hand and reward calm behaviour and settling with you.
  • At the end of bath time, bring out their favourite toys for a play – this will help your pup learn to enjoy their bath time experience.

Lyka: keeping pupper healthy from the inside out

Keeping your pupper clean and comfortable on the outside through grooming is just part of keeping them healthy. High quality nutrients that they get from the Lyka range of meals helps keep them healthy from the inside out. A glossy coat and clear bright eyes – it’s all part of helping your pupper live their best life.



Daps the dachshund and his weight loss journey

Lyka Story: How a fresh diet helped Daps hit his weight loss goals

For many dogs, unwanted weight gain can lead to many other health issues. Daps’ fur mama Shannon learnt this first-hand, when her pup developed skin issues and had a noticeable drop in energy. Thinking that a change to his diet could help, Shannon tried raw food, which presented its own challenges in making sure she could give her pup the right nutrition and it also offered very little noticeable health improvements.

After trying raw feeing, Shannon then discovered Lyka, and after transitioning Daps onto his fresh food diet, she soon noticed Daps’ increased energy levels and improved skin, all whilst also seeing him return to a healthy weight.

Meet Shannon and her adorable dachshund, Daps

Daps is an adorable dachshund who loves playtime in the park, napping, and food time. According to Shannon, Daps will do just about anything for a treat, and has always been obsessed with food.

Shannon got Daps when he was just 3 months old, and he’s now been a part of her family for almost 7 years.

Daps’ weight worries

As Daps got older, Shannon began to notice that he was slowly gaining more and more weight, and developing some other health issues too:

“ He started developing a really yeasty rash that got pretty bad, but the vets always just suggested medicated shampoo that did not help much. He also started putting on quite a lot of weight and became really lethargic and was not the spunky, active dog we once knew.”

Daps’ fur mama, Shannon
Daps the dachshund taking a nap

Not only was he gaining weight and experiencing skin issues, but Shannon noticed that Daps wasn’t able to take part in the activities that he used to love:

“He couldn’t walk as long anymore and got tired after a few play sessions, probably due to the weight gain as it made walks more tiring.”

Daps’ fur mama, Shannon

The search for a new diet to support weight loss

After seeing the weight gain continue and no improvement to the rash from the medicated creams, Shannon decided to try a new diet, hoping it could bring Daps back to his old self. First, she tried a raw food diet, and not only was there little improvement, but Shannon found it difficult to make sure she was getting Daps all the nutrients he needed.

Then, Shannon found Lyka, and after reading more about us and our fresh dog food, she decided to give it a go for her and Daps. 

Daps the dachshund and his fresh dog food diet

“I loved knowing it catered to exactly what the dog was looking for and needed. Lyka also provided a lot of information on the ingredients used which I loved. I was also shocked to find out what normal off-the-shelf pet food actually consisted of.”

Daps’ fur mama, Shannon

Shannon quickly saw a difference in Daps’ energy levels, and he was finally getting back some of his old excitement for play. His skin also improved, and he was able to return to a healthy weight again:

“Within 2 weeks I began to notice Daps energy levels were different, he was running a lot more during our walks, and wanted to play even after longer walks. I would extend his walks and he was still very active at home. After 3 months his skin started showing dramatic improvements. The rash was under control. He would itch less instead of spending half his day just scratching. Finally, we noticed how he managed to shed the excess weight and looked so much healthier.”

Daps’ fur mama, Shannon

Lyka: helping puppers stay healthy, now and always

It can be difficult to manage your pup’s weight, especially if you can’t take them out to exercise as often as you used to. At Lyka, we use our algorithm to tailor portion sizes to your dog and their activity levels, making sure you get the right amount of food for pupper. Our recipes are designed by our in-house vet Dr Matthew Muir, and are nutritionally complete and balanced so you know you are giving your pup all the nutrients they need to live a happy, healthy life. Head to our website to learn more, and begin building your very own Starter Box today.



Lyka Story: Meet Stitch, the wonderful whippet

When your pupper faces health difficulties, it can be difficult to sit back and watch ineffective treatments offer little improvement. When Stitch’s fur mama Eneida noticed that his injections for his stomach problems were giving unwanted side effects, she decided to try Lyka. Now, his stomach is healthier than ever, he’s got more energy and his coat is feeling amazing.

Meet Eneida and her friendly pup, Stitch

Stitch is a whippet who loves exploring nature and getting out and about with his fur mama, Eneida. He came into her life through a stroke of luck at the shelter:

“I was looking for a Whippet but wanted one from a rescue. On Sunday night I thought, what are the chances a Whippet will come into rescue (because they’re so sought after!), and Stitch came online Monday morning. I picked him up on Tuesday evening – it was love at first sight. He came straight up to me like he knew I had chosen him already!”

– Stitch’s fur mama, Eneida

He turns heads everywhere he goes due to his beautiful coat, and loves cheering up children he meets at the park. His love for exploring and getting involved in nature, while impressive to some, has left Eneida with more than a few funny stories about her adventurous pupper getting a bit carried away:

“Stitch loves Jubilee Park and always heads into the mangroves next to the little beach area. One day he went into the mangroves, and bolted straight out with a fish in his mouth. The funny thing about this was, people assumed he came out of the water and caught a fish. There were “oooo’s” and “aaah’s” and people commenting what a clever hunter he was to have caught a fish in water. I didn’t have the heart to tell them the fish was long dead and found in the mangroves! I had to chase after him and dispose of that nasty fish”

– Stitch’s fur mama, Eneida

Stitch’s stomach worries

Since Stitch was a pup, he’s had stomach issues, with uncomfortable gurgling, diarrhoea and even vomiting. Eneida took him to multiple vets, who all said he had inflamed bowels, and needed regular injections. These injections left poor Stitch feeling drowsy and not himself, so Eneida decided to try a natural vet, who not only cost $450, but gave poor service and advice that offered no help. Then, a shop assistant at a pet store recommended that she should try fresh dog food from Lyka, and according to Eneida that has made all the difference:

“Stitch’s stomach improved within a week after I started feeding Lyka to him. No more diarrhoea, gurgling of the stomach, his poos are fantastic and have little odour”

– Stitch’s fur mama, Eneida

Not only did Stitch’s stomach see benefits , but his coat improved too:

“His wiry coat is now soft! Best thing ever!”

– Stitch’s fur mama, Eneida

Lyka also helped Stitch get back to his normal, energetic self, and Eneida thinks he now has even more energy than he did before the injections:

“He also has way more energy. It’s good to see him bouncing around”

– Stitch’s fur mama, Eneida

Giving pupper a spring in their step

Here for pupper now and always. Our recipes and bowls aim to give pupper that extra bounce to their step every day so that they can live their life to the fullest. Why not try out a Starter Box for yourself today?  


pug skin issues

Lyka Story: Zuzu, the travelling pupper

Finding a way to feed your pupper nutritious food can be difficult when they’re a picky eater. For Zuzu’s fur mama, Jade, this meant getting him on a grain-free diet to help her manage his skin condition. Jade was then left with the time-consuming task of home cooking meals to get him to eat anything at all. With Jade discovering Lyka, Zuzu is happier and healthier than ever, and has even been able to travel the world. 

Meet Jade and her loving pupper, Zuzu

Zuzu is an adorable pug who loves snoring on the couch and exploring the world with his dog parents, Jade and her husband. “He is very calm, quiet and barely noticeable in the house as he blends into the top our black couch where he spends many hours of the day snoring”, says Jade. He is a happy, loving pupper who’s able to bring a happiness to everyone he meets with his gorgeous smile.   

Zuzu became a part of their lives in May 2013, where he was ecstatic to meet his new family.  

“The first time we saw him he ran straight up to us with his tiny little paws, wagging his tail. He was so excited to see us, as if he were already ours, and that’s the day we took him home and our household changed forever!” 

Zuzu’s fur mama, Jade 

Helping Zuzu manage his skin condition

When Zuzu was about a year old, he developed some skin issues, but after several tests a direct cause could still not be found. Believing his diet to be a potential cause, Jade decided to try a grain-free diet, which the fussy Zuzu wasn’t a fan of, meaning Jade was having to home cook all of his meals: “After trying many grain free dog foods and a lot of hunger strikes, we were really struggling to find anything he would eat. I found myself having to cook him homemade dog food in order to get him to eat at all.”  

After searching for something more convenient, Jade then started feeding Zuzu Lyka, which he fell in love with immediately: “It was exactly what I was looking for and a massive game changer for us! Our first order arrived and Zuzu absolutely devoured his first Lyka pouch. It was a huge relief for us, and we have been very happy customers ever since.”

Zuzu’s travels

When Zuzu’s parents decided they wanted to go travelling overseas, it was a no brainer for them to bring their pupper along for the trip. Jade explained: “We didn’t want to leave Zuzu behind as he is very attached and dependent on the two of us and is considered a member of our family.” Zuzu was able to travel to Singapore, Dubai, England, Scotland, France, Italy, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Germany and the Netherlands during a 6-month holiday and got to smell many new places and experience several different treats. 

@zuzutravelpug

His parents purchased a car in England so that they could drive around to different destinations. He was able to have many amazing experiences, including posing for photos in front of the Eiffel Tower, climbing through mountains in Switzerland and eating sausages at German markets.  

Although he made many memories, one that stuck out for Jade was his eventful trip to the vet: 

“We had to attend a very important vet appointment in Germany for Zuzu where he had to take a tablet and have an injection in order for him to fly home with us in time for Christmas in Australia. Being the stubborn pug he is, he refused to eat the tablet for the vet… It got to the point where the vet was closed, and we were still there! I ended up having to sprint down the road in the dark and freezing cold to a supermarket to buy ham and cheese, run back and hide the tablet in the combined ham and cheese snackball to get him to eat it… It was safe to say that the German vet thought we were some very insane Aussies with a spoiled pug!” 

Zuzu’s fur mama, Jade 

Still wanting to give Zuzu nutritious food for as long as possible, Jade was able to get Lyka to him right up until he left Australia, getting it shipped to them in Sydney during their transfer, and then immediately when he returned home, even having fresh Lyka food during his 10-day quarantine period in Melbourne.  

Keeping Zuzu healthy with Lyka

Since giving Zuzu his first ever Lyka pouch, Jade had seen improvements in skin and general wellbeing, and has been a loyal customer ever since: 

“Zuzu is medicated for his skin issues but I have noticed a huge improvement in his coat and less itchiness and infections to his facial folds and ears since he has been on Lyka.”

Zuzu’s fur mama, Jade  

Jade also noticed Zuzu being much softer, having more of a shine to his coat and having good teeth since being on Lyka.   

“We also receive a lot of compliments from vets about Zuzu’s dental health which I believe is due to his healthy diet with Lyka.”

Zuzu’s fur mama, Jade

Giving puppers a spring in their step…

Here for pupper now and always. Our recipes and bowls aim to give pupper that extra bounce to their step every day so that they can live their life to the fullest. Why not try out a Starter Box for yourself today?  



4 Dog beaches in Brisbane to take pupper to this summer

Anyone who already lives on or near the Gold Coast knows how beautifully pristine their beaches are. But where’s the fun in going to the beach if pupper can’t come along? Thankfully, there are many different dog beaches in Brisbane to bring your pupper along on a sandy, fun-filled trip. We’ve gathered a few that you might not have heard of before.

1. Nudgee Beach

If you don’t want to venture too far from Brisbane, Nudgee Beach might be your pupper’s new favorite waterside destination. This place does nothing short of cater to dogs–there’s a designated dog swimming area, an off-leash park with an obstacle course, and a picnic area.

Location: Nudgee Rd., Nudgee, 4014 (18km from Brisbane)

Entrance (for dogs): Approximately 100m past the Boondall Wetlandsentrance

Toilet: No public toilets in the vicinity. The nearest human-friendly toilets can be found on Fortitude St.

Picnic area: Yes

Parking: Yes, there’s a car park on premise (see map below).

Cautions: Be sure pupper doesn’t venture into the mangrove bird areas. Policing is strict in this area and you will be fined on the spot.

2. Tallebudgera Offleash Dog Beach

This might be the best-kept secret on our list. It’s located north of the Tallebudgera Surf Club patrolled surf beach and extends to Tallebudgera Creek.

The best part? You and your pupper can access this beach and attend off-leash 24/7. Anybody with a dog in the Brisbane area knows how rare of a find that is! This beach is catered to families, puppers included. It offers picnic tables and chairs, BBQ areas, and public toilets.

If your dog enjoys exploring different terrains, he will find both smooth sand and large, climbable rocks to spend time with. Because this is one of the most dog-centric dog beaches in Brisbane, be sure to do your part and always pick up after pupper.

Location: 1505 Gold Coast Hwy, Palm Beach North

Entrance: You’ll find a trail to the beach in front of the lifesaver’s club, easily accessible from the Surf Club.

Toilet: Yes

Picnic area: Yes, BBQ included

Cautions: There are likely to be many families and other dogs at this beach at all times, so keep this in mind when planning your next trip.

3. The Spit Dog Beach

In the mood for a scenic drive? The Spit Dog Beach is located on the very northmost tip of the Gold Coast. Puppers have a couple of options here–they can either hang out in a sizeable cove on the Broadwater (with a dog paddling lagoon!), or they are welcome to roam the sands on the tip of Southport.

This is one of the big dog beaches in Brisbane, so to help narrow things down, be on the lookout for Muriel Henchman Avenue. This is where the dog-friendly areas begin.

Dog bowls, clean water, and toilets are provided for all of your pupper’s comfort needs. There’s also a washing area to clean pupper off after a day of frolicking in the sand! (These are all provided at the beach entrance.)

Location: Muriel Henchman Dr. to Seaway Wall, Seaworld Dr., Southport

Entrances: To reach the Broadwater, there are a few entrances, marked by car parks to the left off Seaworld Drive. For the beach, head down Seaworld drive almost to the end, and you’ll see a large car park on the right.

Toilet: Yes

Cautions: Be careful of the water outlet under the jetty.

4. Palm Beach Dog off-leash Beach

This is great for puppers of all water preferences–whether he just wants to paddle or if he prefers to catch a few waves. But be aware: This beach gets very crowded on the weekends, so we recommend it as a weekday spot.

There are designated dog areas at this beach, but they are completely off-leash. There are public toilets here, but there isn’t a dog washing station, so be equipped with many towels for your drive home!

Please note that there is NOT a designated parking area, but there are many parking spaces available after you’ve taken the turn to Palm beach Parklands from the highway before the bridge. Parking can be extremely difficult to impossible during peak times.

Location: Palm Beach Parklands Dog Beach, 945 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach

Entrance: At the Palm Beach Parklands

Toilet: Yes

Cautions: Be aware of areas that do not allow dogs. Also be aware that there may be dozens of puppers or more at the beach at any given time.

There are many more beaches that we could add in this list, but we’ve chosen a handful that each have something different. Sandy shores and lots of new friends await you and pupper as you discover all of the beautiful dog-friendly Brisbane beaches the Gold Coast has to offer!


7 Dog friendly restaurants in Sydney for you and pupper

We’ve all been there—you meet up with a few friends or an old colleague to catch up over dinner or a glass of wine, but instead of having a great time, you’re worrying about what pupper is up to all by himself at home. Does he miss you? Is he chewing on his favorite dining room chair? Your mind races and you find yourself anxious to get home.

In a perfect world, there would be dog friendly restaurants down every street, around every corner, basically everywhere you look! We aren’t quite there yet, so here’s a comprehensive list of some of the best spots in Sydney that warmly welcome pups of all shapes and sizes.

The Carrington – a pub where pupper can eat, too

The Carrington, affectionately known as The Carro, goes miles beyond dog friendly—they’re basically saying, “If you have a dog, don’t come here without him!” The Carro offers a whole menu specifically for puppers, including beef tartare and roasted veggies. And if you visit with pupper on a Sunday, he eats for free! They also host many dog-centric events throughout the year, so check their website for info on the latest.

Where: 565 Bourke St, Surry Hills NSW 2010

The Winery – an ideal outdoor relaxation hub

Drinking wine alongside pupper while enjoying the great outdoors and live music—if that’s your idea of a day well spent, The Winery should be your next stop. An impressive wine list and city skyline views are made even better when you can have your pupper by your side.

Where: 285A Crown St, Surry Hills NSW 2010

Wilhemina’s – seriously good food featuring local produce

Wilhemina’s is led by MasterChef finalist Jamie Fleming, so you know the food will be top-notch. If you pride yourself as an adventurous foodie and are always looking for a dog-friendly restaurants with good eats, this should be on your list. Wilhemina’s shows that having your pupper in tow shouldn’t limit your options!

Where: Shop 4/332 Darling St, Balmain NSW 2041

The Duck Inn Pub & Kitchen – pupper is bound to make friends in the beer garden

Head to The Duck Inn’s beer garden for the quintessential dog-friendly Sydney experience. A perfect Friday spot, you can comfortably sip on your beer and snack on some comfort food (honey-roasted duck, anyone?) while pupper finds a new friend or two to play with.

Where: 74 Rose St, Chippendale NSW 2008

Café Bones – just looking to grab a coffee? They’ve got something for pup, too!

Café Bones is as dog-friendly of a café as they come—they offer “Pupaccinos” so our furry friends don’t feel left out, alongside many other treats. Fun fact: They are home to the world’s first Pupaccino!

Where: 1 Canal Rd, Leichhardt NSW 2040

Cuckoo Callay – for the cocktail aficionado

Cuckoo Callay is full of unique drink options for its human customers, but they didn’t forget about our four-legged companions, either. Pupper can sample their pupaccino and savory bacon treats while you find your new favorite drink and appetizer combo!

Where: 324A King St, Newtown NSW 2042 & 413-415 Crown Street, Surry Hills, NSW 2010

Cooh Alexandria – organic, health-forward meals

Cooh’s team of chefs does all things healthy—from vegan juices and smoothies to complete organic meals. This is a popular spot for puppers, so be prepared to make some friends—humans and puppers alike!

Where: 90-96 Bourke Rd, Alexandria NSW 2015

No need to leave pupper at home

Of course, there are many more spots in Sydney that pride themselves on being the dog-friendly restaurants and even dog-encouraging. But this list serves as a great starting point, whether you’re looking to relax with a cup of coffee or enjoy a five-star-worthy dinner. No need to be discouraged and leave pupper at home—you both can have a great time with some of the best eats and drinks that Sydney has to offer!


The next dog friendly walk pupper needs – Karawatha Forest (Brisbane)

There are many more dog friendly trails in Brisbane than it seems at first glance! To protect our delicate and natural surroundings, many parks that do allow dogs only do so on-leash. But don’t let that prevent you from enjoying a change of scenery and going on a satisfying walk through all sorts of nature.

Let’s discuss Karawatha Forest – one of the best places for dog friendly walks. They are open daily from 6am to 6pm, and the forest is always free to attend. Be sure to check online for any temporary closures before you plan your visit, just in case. And if you’re visiting on a weekend, come early! The parking area tends to fill quickly.

With 30 tracks to walk on, only 6 of them are dog friendly. We will focus on two of the most scenic, the Melaleuca Circuit and the Wild May Trail.

Where to start your walk in Karawatha Forest

Here’s a convenient starting point, on Illaweena Street (especially convenient if an overexcited pupper is with you!). You can park your car at the Illaweena Street Picnic Area (if you’re using a navigation app or something similar, it may be listed as Rocks Picnic Area).

This picnic area is the perfect resting spot to get situated with your pupper when you arrive and leave the forest. If you need to fill up yours or pupper’s water supply, there’s running water here. Please note, though, that there are no restroom facilities in this area.

Let’s get down to the trails!

On this map, A is the Illaweena Street Picnic Area and the loop with a number 16 is the Melaleuca Circuit. Number 19 is the Wild May Trail.

Melaleuca Circuit

If your pupper tires easily or if you only have a half-hour to spare, the Melaleuca Circuit is a great way to jam-pack a whole lot of beauty into a short walk.

Total distance: 1km

Time: 20 to 30 minutes

Difficulty: Easy – mostly flat with few obstacles if any, and minor slopes

This trail starts at the bridge in the Illaweena Street Picnic Area and takes you slightly northwest in a short loop. For a part of this walk, a boardwalk takes you and pupper over a lagoon! Before you know it, you’ll be back where you started.

Wild May Trail

With the Wild May Trail, you can create your own route. If you want to start at the picnic area, taking the Wild May Trail to its completion and back (on the same route—not in a loop) is just a 1.2km walk.

But if you and pupper have some time and are feeling adventurous, you can make your own loop by walking the Wild May Trail to the Hakea Trail (number 18 on the above map), and take this north to the Maculata Trail (number 17 on the map above). You can then take this west and finally south, where you’ll return to your starting point.

Here’s some more information on our suggested make-your-own loop:

Distance: 5.2km

Time: 90 to 120 minutes

Difficulty: All trails are rated Easy – mostly flat with few obstacles if any, and minor slopes

On these trails, your path may get narrow and overgrown around the lagoons. Be sure you have an appropriate leash and protection for your pupper, and appropriate shoes and protection for you! You’ll see that this loop navigates around Scrubby Creek, making it a fun, scenic walk.

A change of scenery might be just around the corner!

Who knows where your next beautiful walk is hiding? It just might be on the Wild May Trail or the Melaleuca Circuit at Karawatha Forest. With a convenient picnic area that includes fresh water, this area of the forest is ideal for any fur parent who’s looking for their next sweet escape with their pupper.


Lyka Story: A fresh diet for dogs helps Noodle and Baxter feel younger

As your pupper gets older, their health and diet requires more special attention. This means ensuring they are getting the healthiest ingredients and nutrients in their diet so you and your pupper can thrive together. Virginia and her two gorgeous yorkies, Noodle and Baxter have shared their positive Lyka journey and their experiences with switching to a fresh diet for dogs.

Meet Virginia and her gorgeous puppers, Noodle and Baxter

Noodle and Baxter moved to Australia 10 years ago from the East Coast of New Zealand. “Baxter loves bags, any bags from shopping bags to hand bags, he will jump in and make himself at home no matter how big or small the bag is. Noodle loves food and craves a good meal or snack.” Virginia shared on both her pupper’s different personalities.

They are both 11 years old and are moving into their golden older years. With old age, Noodle was diagnosed with a heart condition, Cushing’s disease and cancer.

Since making a switch to Lyka, Noodle & Baxter are coping with their
health conditions better than Virginia expected!

Supporting senior dogs with health concerns

Noodle and Baxter’s health was the main concern for Virginia, “Noodle and Baxter both suffered bouts of diarrhea and constipation.” Virginia said and this meant their stool was not looking normal. Apart from diarrhea and constipation, Noodle’s heart condition, Cushing’s disease and cancer were health concerns that Virginia wanted to help combat. So she opted for healthier options with Lyka.

Since making the switch to Lyka, she has seen both puppers thrive and Noodle coping with her health conditions better than Virginia had expected. Similarly, Noodle and Baxter are now producing healthier and regular stools. A fresh diet for dogs that is human-grade, lightly cooked with fresh ingredients and no preservatives was exactly what Virginia was looking for. With a relief, Virginia said “I truly don’t think we would be in this position with her if she wasn’t eating Lyka.”

Finding the balance with maintaining weight

Both Noodle and Baxter were having slight issues with maintaining their weight. Noodle, loving food so much, gained weight easily. On the other hand, Baxter was underweight and would easily turn away his dinner. Virginia switched to Lyka in order to help maintain both Noodle and Baxter’s ideal weight, as well as provide them with fresh nutrients.

Since moving to Lyka, Noodle has lost weight while simply eating two Lyka meals a day. Similarly, Baxter now eats two meals a day, twice the amount recommended for his weight, and has gained weight whilst also increasing his nutrient levels. Now with their new and improved diets, both Noodle and Baxter have transformed into more energetic and healthier dogs.

Thrive with Lyka

Your pupper deserves only the best, real food ingredients to help them thrive in life every day. That’s why our recipes are carefully crafted to provide the optimal balance of natural nutrients, for their health to thrive. Give our sampler box a go and see your pupper’s overall health improve!


Camping with your dog at Wingello State Forest

Planning for a weekend escape with your BFF (of course, we mean your pup!)? With careful preparation, camping with your dog can be a fun and rewarding experience for both you and pupper! Imagine waking up to the peaceful sounds of nature, and hitting the trails together with pup while enjoying a breath of fresh air. What can be better than that?

As dogs are not allowed in most national parks in Australia, you can opt for state forests for an ideal camping spot with your dog. For those of you in or near the Sydney area, we recommend you to check out Wingello State Forest. Surrounded by pine trees, the main campground offers a tranquil setting that allows you and pup to relax. It’s just around an hour’s drive from Sydney, and it’s free to camp in!

Things to know

Before you get packing for your trip, there are a few things to keep in mind.

Accessibility

  • There is a main campground in the area with toilets, and there are even more campsites if you travel farther in the woods. If you do this, make sure your vehicle is equipped to handle it. There is 2WD and 4WD access.
  • Parking is located just north of Gulph Road (please see the map down below).

Timing

  • The most crowded weekends are near Christmas time and around any other public holiday, so plan accordingly!
  • Before you go, check with the Forestry Corporation about any park closures.
  • Because forest conditions can change rapidly, closures can happen at any time.

Facilities

  • Facilities are minimal. If you’re staying overnight, bring literally everything with you that you and pup will need.
  • Toilet paper is provided at the drop toilets, but bring your own just in case!
  • There is no drinking or washing water available so make sure you bring plenty for both yourself and your dog.

Rules

  • Campfires are not permitted year-round. Check with the Forestry Corporation for the latest information.
  • There are NO leash rules within the forest!

Safety

  • Wingello State Forest is an active logging area, so be careful of ongoing logging procedures and trucks.

Wingello State Forest features

  • Space for camping and picnics: Yes. Whether you want to camp in a tent or trailer, there’s plenty of open space to set up your weekend retreat.
  • Walking trails: Yes. There are many walking and mountain bike trails in the forest—everything is dog-friendly. But, anyone walking on a trail is advised to be aware of bikers.
  • Designated horse-riding track: Yes
  • Kayaking, swimming, and fishing: No
  • Cabins or shelter: No
  • General store: Yes
  • Barbecue: Yes
  • Vehicle access: Yes
  • Picnic area: No
  • Toilets: Yes (maintained by staff)
  • Hunting: No
  • Lookout spots: No
  • Wheelchair access: No

Wingello State Forest map

Source: Forestry Corporation

Check out this map to learn more about trail locations and facilities.

Going for a walk: If you come to Wingello State Forest and want to take an adventurous walk with your pup, we suggest walking along Running Creek or the Blue MTB Trail. The Blue trail is the shortest of all the MTB trails, at 7km in length.

If you and pupper are looking for something a bit more exciting, try the Yellow Trail. It’s 18km in length and ventures into native forest, unlike the Blue Trail, which only stays within the Pines.

If you’re visiting Wingello State Forest while there is a mountain biking event, we recommend avoiding MTB trails as they may be too crowded and could put you or pupper in danger.


Your next outdoor retreat with your pup is closer than you think!


If you and your dog love spending time outdoors, Wingello State Forest could be the perfect destination for a weekend camping with your dog. All of the open space allows you to sit back and immerse yourself in nature’s beauty. No need to feel stuck in the city.


Lyka story: The fresh food for dogs that made Theophilus & Ernie shinier and energetic

Properly feeding your pupper isn’t just about giving them food at the same time each and every day. It’s also about making the right food choices to let them thrive and develop as well as they should. Clare, one of our loyal customers, shares her positive experience switching her puppers from dry food to real, fresh food for dogs. They now have even more energy and even shinier coats!

Meet Clare and her adorable puppers, Theophilus & Ernie

Clare wanted a Newfoundland for twenty years before she got her first one, who she named Theophilus. She is now nearly two years old. “Her cheekiness and her sweetness are equal first,” Clare tells us about Theophilus’ most unique personality trait. 

Theophilus has been one of the greatest joys of Clare’s life, along with her brother Ernie, a six-and-a-half-year-old rescue Newfoundland. Clare recently adopted Ernie in March and she says, since then, he’s like a new dog. He loves snuggling and has a super-loving nature. 

Ernie (left) and Theophilus (right) playing in the snow last month

Their relationship is one of a kind. Ernie loves Theophilus, and Theophilus pretends not to love Ernie, but when Clare isn’t watching, they sometimes sleep “holding hands”.  

Theophilus tries to play with Ernie but he hasn’t yet been well socialised. Because he gets nervous, Ernie will just give her the ball or whatever it is she’s trying to tempt him with. But he’s coming along, and now they sometimes wrestle over a stick. 

Want more adorable photos of theirs? You can follow their adventures on Instagram at @theophilusandernie

Taking the “mainstream” approach: Just because it’s the norm doesn’t mean it’s right!

Initially, Theophilus was on packaged dry food. But Clare was worried about the toll it may have taken on her energy levels. “I thought dry food had too many additives,” she admits. Additives are commonly used in dry food or processed food for different purposes, like extending the shelf life, enhancing the flavours and appearance… the ‘seems-to-be-necessary’ list goes on.

Some additives are sourced from natural sources, but some are derived from manufactured ones. The latter is often thought to be responsible for any adverse reactions or intolerance symptoms in some dogs. And since it’s possible for dog foods to contain synthetic additives without being advertised on the ingredient list, it’s natural for dog owners to worry about feeding this food to their dogs.

Clare knew that she needed to switch Theophilus to fresh food, but time was her only issue. “I don’t have time to prepare fresh food myself,” Clare said. And with good reason! Making pupper homemade food starts with learning about what pupper needs, which often involves consulting vets, making your way to find all the ingredients you need, and finally prepping and cooking them. It’s arguably more work in making fresh food for dogs than cooking for a human family!

Why not give Lyka a chance?

Clare then found Lyka online and decided to give it a go. After three weeks with a Lyka subscription, Clare saw that Theophilus had so much energy. “She used to be quite lethargic and now she loves to run and run. She is very shiny too,” Clare says. “She was like a new dog!”

When Ernie joined the family, she subscribed him to Lyka too. “When we got Ernie, he was skinny and anxious and he couldn’t finish his dinner as he’d get distracted and afraid,” Clare says, “But now he barks at me to get up and feed him in the morning and chomps his jaw while I am preparing his food. It’s hard to separate out the food from being with us [that makes him that excited], but [we know that] he loves his Lyka! He’s also come out of his shell and now he is an enormous loveable goofball.” 

Lyka is the easiest way to provide a real, fresh diet

Lyka disrupts the pet food industry by preparing all meals on demand and delivering them directly to our customers. Lyka is built on the premise that dogs should be as choosy as we are when it comes to food. We redefine pet food by producing minimally processed wholefoods in a human-grade kitchen.

Order your Starter Box now and get ready to see real changes in your pup, brought by real, fresh food for dogs. Hassle-free for you, better for pupper!


Mornington Peninsula: Northern coast dog walk

You might’ve heard about Mornington Peninsula—it’s one of the many well-known areas in Victoria that are ideal for a dog walk. With plenty of coastal, wooded, and open areas, the entirety of the Mornington Peninsula is dog heaven.

But, be sure to stay away from Mornington Peninsula National Park if you have your dog with you. To better protect the threatened fauna and plants within the park, dogs are not allowed. (Even the scent of our pup friends can cause distress to certain plants!)

Best walking trail in Mornington Peninsula with dogs: Northern coast walk

With wonderfully fascinating scenery for you and all different types of terrain for your pup, a stroll along the northern coast is an ideal choice for people who love finding new areas to walk their dog for an exercise.

The best part—you can make several short dog walks out of this! You can make your own dog-friendly walking trails in Mornington Peninsula. And unless you want to spend literally your entire day walking, we recommend doing just that. We also recommend planning to keep your dog on-lead at all times. There are very few off-leash areas, but most areas require a leash. You can find the list of beaches which are leash-free all year round here

When bringing your pup to the beach, make sure to refer to all signs and the latest official information released by the authorities.

Entire length: 39km
Where: Between Hawker Beach and Shelly Beach
Terrain: Smooth sand, rugged sand, paved gravel
Difficulty: Between easy and moderate (depending on area)
Features: Multiple lookouts, toilet, multiple carparks
Best time for a dog walk in Mornington Peninsula beaches: Outside of the 9am-7pm window during daylight saving time (most beaches follow this rule)

Be careful. There are many different species of animals that inhabit areas close to the water. Be sure to keep your dog on a leash in all areas that require it.

Here’s a quick map snapshot of the entire area:

Important information and features of each area:

Hawker Beach: You can park your car on Esplanade Road. Then, follow the signs to the beach. The area near the water here is on the steeper side. Hawker Beach includes a marked area where dogs can roam off-leash.

Safety Beach: Tassels Cove Beach allows dogs off-leash at all times! All other beaches in this area follow the daylight saving hours we mentioned above. 

McCrae: You can find a carpark conveniently located across from Margaret Street, then start the walk at the McCrae Lighthouse and just follow the Bay Trail.

Koonya Dog Beach: Alongside the sands, there’s a paved gravel path with railings if you don’t want to brave the tougher terrain with your pup.

Shelly Beach, Portsea: Shelly Beach has a carpark, picnic area, and toilets. An off-leash area lies between Franklin Road and Hemston Avenue.

Our pick? We would recommend Shelly Beach’s circuit walk. Only 2km long and just under an hour’s walk, this leads you through many different styles of terrain. And it’s a loop—so you finish where you start! 

So—there you have it! Despite dogs not being allowed in Mornington Peninsula National Park, which takes up much of the south shore, there are still plenty of places for a dog walk around Mornington Peninsula no matter the type of walk you’re looking for.


Lyka story: Aqua & Felix thriving on homemade dog food

With so many studies published revealing the link between processed dog food and chronic diseases, many dog owners choose to feed their puppers homemade dog food. And since many of the things we eat are also pupper-friendly (the list is here!), there’s a big chance that you have all the ingredients you need for healthy, tasty dog meals just right in your kitchen. But what if you can get the homemade diets delivered? Our loyal customer, Visca, shares with us how Lyka keeps her commitment to only giving the best for her lovely Aqua and Felix, especially when she’s away for holidays.

Meet Visca and her puppers, Aqua and Felix

Visca’s journey with puppers started when she fell in love with a grumpy looking pug back in 2016. She adopted him the following year as her birthday present and named him Aqua, short for Aquarius. Aqua grew up as a healthy, adorable pupper who loves all humans and dogs he meets. 

One and a half year later, Visca fell in love the second time with a squishy face Frenchie that she adopted and named Felix. It means “lucky” as she thought she would never be able to afford another pupper. They love walking in the sunset together, the perks of living next to the golf course and having the ocean as their backyard. You can see their adorably heartwarming pictures here.

Can you spot Felix? 🙂
Want to see more pictures? Follow their Instagram @aquafelixlittlebay

The commitment to only providing the best food

Reading plenty of articles about the natural way of feeding dogs, Visca was determined to avoid any commercial dog food for Aqua, her first-ever pupper. “I don’t believe in kibble,” she says. Since his gotcha day, Aqua had homemade dog food as 95% of his food.

Visca also decided to only consume food that Aqua can eat, meaning there is no more onion, grapes, and macadamia nuts in her diet. Chocolate is her only weakness (understandably!). It’s a different kind of serotonin-boosting food. “Who can say no to chocolate when Aqua my endless love is around?” she askes.

Real food, real benefits

Visca used organic chicken, lamb, or beef, nutrient-dense vegetables like broccoli and kale, super seeds like flax seeds and pumpkin seeds, healthy roots like turmeric, medicinal herbs like parsley, and beneficial oils like coconut oil for Aqua’s meals. She also made sure the ingredients used were gluten-free. Visca has always wanted Aqua to get the nutrients he needs to thrive and develop into a healthy, happy dog.

Her commitment paid off. “Aqua has been a very healthy boy. He never goes to the vet for illnesses,” says Visca. But one day, Visca’s feet were itchy for an overseas holiday, meaning she’d be away for more than a week. So, she was hoping to find ready-to-eat food for Aqua so he can stay in the boarding kennel and eat healthily.

“Lyka is the answer to my prayers”

Visca was taking Aqua to the dog daycare Centennial Bark when she encountered Lyka. She was thrilled to discover it. “Lyka is the answer to my prayers“, she says. She brought some samples home and gave it a try, with a great result: Aqua loved it! This was in early 2018 when Felix had not yet joined the family. After doing her own research about Lyka and its ingredients, she decided to subscribe to Lyka without any hesitation. “I’m so lucky to find Lyka, otherwise the kitchen is my third office!” Visca says.

Aqua (left) and Felix (right) with their Lyka boxes

The two things Visca loves the most about Lyka? “It gives me the convenience of not cooking all the time, and still offers consistent quality in each batch,” says Visca. Aside from the obvious convenience factor, she has noticed that Lyka helps keep Aqua in tip-top shape. “Lyka is one of the keys to Aqua’s excellent health. It’s just like my homemade dog food. Aqua’s trips to the vet are only and only for vaccinations,” says Visca.

“Things never happen the same way twice” – C. S. Lewis

Felix is also following Aqua’s pathway to the same goal after he was adopted, but it is not without challenges. After undertaking two surgeries in less than 6 months, his weakened immune system took the toll. Felix developed skin allergies. Visits to the vets and dermatologists have alleviated the acute phase, but they have not fully resolved his skin conditions. Visca determines to take the natural step to support his healing process using the “food to heal”‘ principle. Her trust in human-grade ingredients quality and consistency that Lyka bowls offer is still taking part in Felix’s journey to fully recover.

Meet Lyka, your number one supporter for your puppers’ best life

At Lyka, we develop vet-approved recipes that cover the nutrients your pupper needs, and tailor the serving size to ensure their portion is just right. Just click “order” and leave the rest to us. Kick start your dog’s healthy eating plan with a Starter Box, and get ready to be impressed by Lyka’s convenience and quality.


5 reasons why pupper is your perfect partner in crime

Your pupper is much more than your BFF—He is your partner in crime.

Don’t believe us? Try this mental exercise: Imagine yourself on a perfect vacation with a few of your girlfriends. Now imagine that same experience, but with your dog by your side. Much better, right?

Anyone with a pup of their own knows that dog ownership is the single greatest thing to ever happen to humans, but partnership is even better. There are thousands of reasons, and probably even more, but here are just 5 reasons why your pupper is your ideal partner in crime.

1. You lift each other up

You’re on your way home from work after a terrible afternoon. You spilled soup on your dress at lunch, and immediately after, there was a huge misunderstanding with your boss (turns out the missed deadline was his fault after all!). You’re glad that the day’s over, but emotionally drained. All you want to do is sulk on the couch.

And then you open your front door to your pup’s giant eyes and wagging tail—as if he’s been in that same spot waiting for you this whole time. He can tell you’ve had a rough day and gives you a bunch more kisses than usual.

You forget about your less-than-stellar afternoon. Your pupper will always be there when it feels like nobody else is. Just like you let him have his zoomies around the apartment on a day that’s too rainy to go to the park, he’ll bring you up whenever you feel down.

2. Dogs have literally nothing to worry about

Dogs should be an inspiration to us all. They don’t know what it feels like to worry about taxes, car maintenance, or debt. If your pup is fed a proper diet, getting the right type of exercise, and of course, getting lots of attention, he will be happy. 

Your dog doesn’t spend time worrying about something he has no control over, so why should you?

Since your dog has nothing to worry about, maybe they’ve taught you to stress just a little bit less.

3. Just like you, they could always go for a snack

No need to feel bad about sneaking a couple extra snacks in your day with your pupper by your side. You treat him to healthy, wholesome snacks, so why not do the same for yourself?

And no matter how recently he ate, he will be glued to your seat every time you eat, even if it’s something he know she doesn’t like. Now that’s dedication. 

4. Your pup is up for whatever

Your pupper is your hype man. In the mood to go for a hike? He would literally love nothing more than to join you. How about a trip to the dog-friendly restaurant in the next city? Yes, absolutely! What about bringing him to the office a couple times per week? Oh my gosh, yesAnd if you just want to chill and watch movies all day, your pup is cool with that, too. 

No matter what’s on your agenda, he’s along for the ride. Finally, someone who understands your spontaneous yet lax attitude.

5. You love each other unconditionally, AAF

When your pup has an accident on the carpet or decides your new pair of pumps would make a great chew toy, sure, you’ll be frustrated in the moment. But this doesn’t change how much you love him.

And he still loves you even when you get frustrated with him. Both of you know that nothing either of you can do will change the love you have for each other.

And there you have it! Five of the many, many reasons your pupper is the perfect partner in crime. From their sense of humor to their wacky personalities to the unconditional love they have for you, dogs are nothing short of a gift! Go give your dog a hug. Yes, right now!


Dog-friendly walk at Yarra Bend Park

Whether or not you’re familiar with Melbourne any pupper parent will be delighted to learn there are quite a few scenic places to take your BFF for a walk and exercise. Have you been to the dog-friendly trails in Yarra Bend Park? With the winding Yarra River to walk against, alongside plenty of open grass and dog-friendly trails, it’s the perfect place for your pup’s walk, run, or playtime. 

Just be aware that Yarra Bend Park is a multi-zone park, meaning dogs must be leashed in specific areas. You and your pup also have to keep any dog exclusion areas in mind. Before visiting Yarra Bend Park, or any park, it’s important to make sure pupper is properly leash-trained.

Now that we got the formalities out of the way, let’s walk through our route! We’ve created a walk that’s on the longer side (the whole loop takes just over 1.5 hours) so this is a great option for a high-energy pup with a free schedule. Or—if you skip the flying-fox viewing platform, the length of your walk would be cut in half! 

  • Start Point: Fairfield Amphitheatre
  • End Point: back to the start point
  • Distance: ~8km
  • Time required: 1.5 – 3 hours
  • Difficulty: Easy to moderate

Here’s a handy walking map to the the dog-friendly Yarra Bend Park walk:

On our suggested route, you’ll see a ton of different sights and terrains along the way.

The walk starts at Fairfield Amphitheatre located just next to Yarra River. You can park your car at Fairfield Park Drive, off Heidelberg Road. It’s a free parking area limited to 4 hours from 7 am to 7 pm.

Pit Stop 1. Follow Main Yarra Trail towards Yarra Bend Road then head south to the Bluestone Pillar. This pillar reminds viewers of the Yarra Bend Asylum that operated in this very spot from 1848 to 1925. 

Cross M3 and head toward WJ Cox Oval. You should be able to see the river at this point. Walk alongside it on Dights Falls Loop Trail, if your pup wants!

Pit Stop 2: Head due south to the Loop Picnic Area and Playground. This is a great opportunity for you and your dog to take a rest or food break. You can find toilet facilities here. If you and/or pup are too tired, the walk back to the starting point is just shy of 40 minutes from here.

But if your pup is all ready to keep going, head across Yarra River and down Boathouse Road. From here, you can either walk along the Bushland Circuit Trail or Yarra Blvd. We recommend Bushland Circuit Trail—it’s the best walking trail in Yarra Park with dogs.

Pit Stop 3: Keep walking along the river and you will hit Bellbird Park and the Flying-Fox Viewing Platform. The name says it all—this is the place to be if you want to see Mother Nature in action. If your dog is frightened by smaller animals, this might not be worth a stop.

Keep heading north, still along the river, and cross the Fairfield Pipe Bridge. Head north just a bit and you’ll find yourself back where you started!

If you’re ready to make this walk into a day-long affair, pack your must-have grilling essentials and chef up some lunch at the Loop Picnic Area before or after you walk along the Bushland Circuit Trail—the ultimate dog-friendly walking trail in Yarra Park. Just make sure to pack pupper’s favourite snacks—he’ll be hungry!

Now For A Bit About Us:

We’re Lyka Pet Food and we’re on a mission to help puppers live their best life here in Australia. We create a joyful life for your dog through a custom plan of nutritious, fresh dog food, delivered to your front door.



The 5 best low-maintenance dog breeds for you

It’s no secret—dog ownership isn’t a walk in the park. But if you’re ready to take the plunge, yet you think your schedule may not accommodate a dog’s active lifestyle, we have some great news! Not all dog breeds are high-energy.

As long as you are ready to give your new pup all of the love and attention it deserves, there is a breed out there for you!

Yes, there are low-maintenance dog breeds for busy people. If you want to just decompress after a long day at work instead of go for a run with your pup, there are many breeds you can choose that would love to snuggle with you on the couch!

Here are just 5.

What dog should I get?

1. Bullmastiff

If you want a large dog (they can weigh up to 130 pounds or more!) that doesn’t require miles of daily running—the Bullmastiff is for you! Yes, they do have a bit of energy, as does every dog, but they might be the best dog breed for somebody who’s too busy for a high-energy large dog, like a Husky, for example. Daily walks or a good game of fetch will be enough to keep your Bullmastiff satisfied. 

And who doesn’t want an extra-large cuddle buddy?

2. West Highland White Terrier

On almost the exact opposite side of the size spectrum, we have the Westie. They usually don’t weigh more than 20 pounds, and another plus—they’re remarkably easy to train.

No need to worry about intensive grooming, either—usually, brushing and removing dead hair is enough to keep your Westie’s coat healthy. They might be the fluffiest low-maintenance dog breed.

Westies can have little spurts of energy throughout the day, but their smaller size means they’ll tire more easily from zooming around a few times in your apartment.

3. Chihuahua

Looking for a really tiny dog? The Chihuahua is worth considering. Yes, they are known for having more energy than other breeds, but they don’t require a ton of exercise. And Chihuahuas will always be SUPER excited to see you. Just take them for a quick walk and give them some attention, and they’ll chill out with you in no time.

While the Chihuahua can adjust pretty well between hyper and relaxed, their main downside is their temperament. If you’re determined to provide your future dog with excellent and consistent training, consider the Chihuahua a particularly good match.

4. French Bulldog

Have you ever noticed that Frenchies look super happy? Like all the time? Maybe it’s because they’re so easy to care for. Yes, they have spats of high energy like other small-to-medium breeds, but a walk or a game of fetch later and they’re snoozing on the couch (pretty loudly, we might add).

Frenchies also respond well to basic training, and they love people. If you’re looking for a perfect home companion that doubles as a great travel partner, the French Bulldog might be your best bet.

5. Dachshund

The Dachshund, or the Wiener Dog as it’s most affectionately known, is one of the cuddliest breeds out there. If you choose a long-haired Dachshund, however, they will require more grooming than their short-haired counterparts.

Because of their short-yet-long stature, they actually benefit from having a limited amount of exercise—too much movement can trigger or exacerbate spinal issues. Otherwise, Dachshunds normally remain in good health and do exceptionally well with basic training—they can be a bit stubborn!


A low-maintenance dog is still a dog with needs and wants—just like you!


Busy people will get along best with a dog that has minimal needs, but don’t forget that every dog requires your time and effort, no matter the breed.

We know choosing a dog breed isn’t easy. But now that you have a list of dogs that might be compatible with your lifestyle, here are a few dog breeds you should avoid if you don’t have extra time and energy on your hands.

5 breeds that are less suitable for a busy schedule

1. Dalmatian

Dalmatians make excellent running companies. So if you don’t consider yourself a long-distance runner, you can go ahead and take this breed off of your list. They’re also among the most intelligent breeds, so Dalmatian + lots of energy + empty apartment = potential disaster.

2. Husky

Yes, they are beautiful dogs, but if you live in the scorching Australia heat or you aren’t going to spend hours of your day wearing them out, it isn’t a good idea to have a Husky companion. They were bred to be sled dogs, which means they’re bred to have extremely high endurance. It takes a lot to calm a Husky down. (Plus, have you heard their howls? Might not be ideal for small-space apartment living!)

3. Beagles

Beagles are among the most curious dog breeds. Leave a Beagle to roam around the house for a few hours and you might find a few ruined shoes, ripped furniture, and torn up pillows. They make great companions, but you might be surprised by what they can do if they don’t get lots of daily exercise.

4. Pembroke Welsh Corgi

This one might be surprising because of their size and friendly nature, but Corgis are strong, alert little pups. They need to be physically and mentally stimulated for most of the day in order to feel satisfied. Then and only then will they want to cuddle on the couch with you.

5. Russell Terrier

It seems like one Russell Terrier has more energy than every dog owner in the world combined. These pups are best for people who spend most of their time outdoors and who are able to spend every moment with their pup.


Once you’ve found the perfect breed, you can rest easy knowing that choosing the right food won’t take the same amount of effort.


No need to experiment with tons of different dog food brands to create the perfect life for your new pup—leave their diet to Lyka. It will save you time out of your already-busy schedule, and you can confidently know that you’re giving your dog the best food you can. With their vet-approved minimally-processed whole foods recipes, Lyka’s got you and your pup covered!


Australia’s most #lykable dog 2019

To our valued Lyka community, the day is finally here! We are super excited to announce the final winners of the first ever Australia’s Most #Lykable Dog campaign.

The good news: Adoptable pups found their forever homes

The competition was tough – with over 500 of you taking the time to enter your pups and tell us what you find most #Lykable about them! We had some beautiful entries including a dog Mum who said her dog healed her depression, and two adoptable dogs who found homes throughout the competition, Eddie and Layla.

Pam Whitwell from SeqK9 rescue centre who had a special relationship with Eddie, said of his adoption: “Eddie came into seqk9 rescue from Maryborough pound. He received some amazing training whilst in care and to see him adopted to a lovely family is a joy all foster carers know well. We wish Eddie all the best and hope that all rescue dogs get a second chance.

The challenging process of finding the one

To reach the top 25, it came down to the number of votes you rallied in for your fur-babies, and oh my goodness the competition was tough! In the end, the page had over 45,000 views of the competition page, of busy voters and entrants tracking their progress.

And from the top 25 finalists, three of us have undergone the hard task of choosing Australia’s Most #Lykable Dog, and four the runners ups. Agnes Beugnon, Editor of Australian Dog Lover, Owen George Editor of GC Mag and myself considered the image in the entry and the creativity of the post.

We chose the four runner-ups to be Miles (@stephdukic) for his effort in getting his Mum to make such a great entry, Jack (@gehrkeshelley) for being such a good boy and posing for his Mum and Noodles (@noodlesthedachsie) for bringing much love and joy to his family. These 3 runner-ups are entitled to 1 month (28 days) complimentary Lyka Pet Food with personalised daily serving size. The fourth runner up is the ever curious looking Rosco (@roscotheratbag), to be awarded a leash and collar from Handmade AdoraBarcelona.

Congratulations to all the runners up!

For one lucky pupper, we couldn’t go past awarding her for managing to get so many votes. For being “Australia’s Most Popular Dog”, we have created a special bonus prize, awarded to Meisha (@barnsie333) who will receive 5kg of Lyka Pet Food and a special trophy for her mantle with her title on it to be proud of for years to come!

Meisha is awarded as Australia’s most popular dog 2019!

Meet our winner this year, Sean

Finally, we are very pleased to announce Sean (@seanthetibbypug) as Australia’s Most #Lykable Dog 2019 because of his unmissable smile that lights up the room and for purposefully bringing so much joy to those around him.

As the winner, Sean will receive 12-month complimentary Lyka Pet Food and an Integrative Veterinary Holistic Health Review by All Natural Vet Care, the first dedicated veterinary practice in Sydney to offer Integrative Veterinary Medicine. The prize would include 1-hour holistic consultation, a comprehensive written care plan, and 45-minute follow-up consultation.

Sean is our most #Lykable dog in Australia this year!

We want to share a big congratulations to every entrant and proud paw-rent, and are so blessed to be able to hear what joy and love your pet pooches bring to your lives. At Lyka, we believe that our pets bring so much joy, love, health and well-being benefits – and we exist to bring those same health benefits to your pets in return – because a creature who is part of your family deserves to be fed like a member of your family – on real, high quality, human grade pet food you can trust.

To hear more about how Lyka help ensure your pets only receive the best, check out Lyka.com.au.

Wishing you and your pet all the very best,

Anna Podolsky
Founder and CEO
Lyka Pet Food


Lyka CEO unveils behind the scenes insights into how she runs her business

Lyka Pet Food CEO and founder, Anna Podolsky, shares her insights on how she runs her early-stage fresh dog food business in her recent interview with B2C.

How do you keep employees motivated?

Firstly, everyone that works at Lyka Pet Food believes in our mission, and disrupting the pet food industry inherently motivates them. I have a strict recruiting process to ensure that everyone we hire believes in our values and shares the passion in drive. Other than this, we do have some processes in place to keep everyone motivated, engaged and performing at their best.

I strongly believe that understanding the wider business context and how an individual is contributing to the big picture is very important. I try to be as transparent as possible, and we have weekly team meetings where the team and I share updates and what’s coming up and the focus for the week.

We review metrics weekly and have a set of targets that once we reach, we do fun events as a team. I also am very focused on professional development, and believe that people are motivated when they see they are growing and developing. 

I have one-on-one fortnightly professional development catch ups with every team member where we discuss their progress and learning opportunities. I also encourage the team to share and pursue other areas of interest within the business which might not be in their core role.

Photo shoot of Lyka pouches

Do your staffs meditate every day? Why?

I personally started meditating over a year ago and it has had a transformative effect on me. Being a founder and CEO of a start-up is high pressure and stressful. In order to excel at this role I believe I must have a clear mind and not be reactive to the ups and downs that come with the job.

Meditating trains your mind to be controlled, self-aware and helps reduce stress. I meditate for 10 minutes every morning to start off the day. I have recently introduced a weekly meditation with the entire team, as I believe the benefits extend to anyone and are seen both personally and professionally.

What changes have you noticed in your work environment since implementing this?

Lyka Pet Food is still in the early stages, however given my personal experience I strongly believe that we will see benefits, and hopefully become an even more cohesive and high performing team.

Have you ever experienced failure in a startup? How did you respond to it?

I experience failures most days – most are minor, and some are major. The nature of startups is to “move fast and break things” so failure is just part of the process. I try to see it as a learning experience and reflect on why something didn’t work and what we can do differently to make our produce even better. I also try to see the failure in the bigger picture- something that seems like a disaster at the time most likely won’t actually be that significant when you look back on it in a week or month.

How do you manage to keep work life balance?

The reality is having a work-life balance as an early-stage founder is close to impossible.

I choose to make a short-term sacrifice on the “life” part, with the hope that it will pay off dividends in the future. We’re on a mission to redefine pet food and it’s a big one – so I need to be proactive about my health, so I make sure I eat well, and that I have some activities which I make sure I do every week that give me energy and joy.

For example, I do a yoga or pilates class at least once a week. I also try to block out a few hours on the weekend to do a fun activity with my partner and dog – like going hiking or to the beach. 

Lyka posed on one of her hikes with Anna

What productivity tricks do you have for other startups?

My biggest tip is to build in processes with your team to set up everyone around you to provide the most amount of leverage possible. Your reports should be proactive in planning and organising in the way they update you and get input from you. That will increase the efficiency of not only you, but them also, and will free up your mind to think about the more urgent and needle-moving items.


Ruff Sleepers caring for the pets of Sydney homeless

Some people may question why homeless people choose to keep their pets even when it means they do not get access to crisis accommodation. But for many people experiencing homelessness, pets are their greatest – possibly only – comfort and support during their difficult times. Pets make a loving companion for them, just like they do for anyone. Sadly, it is often nearly impossible for them to afford basic pet care due to their tough circumstances. Inspired to help homeless people address these issues, Ruff Sleepers was then founded in early 2018.

This not-for-profit charity provide free pet washing service and flea treatments for puppers of the rough sleepers, while offering food and positive conversation to the owners. Linda Castellazzi, one of the co-founders, recently shared with Lyka Pet Food about Ruff Sleepers and their hopes to raise awareness on the importance of keeping pets for the homeless, and the needs for more pet-friendly housing in Australia.

What drove you and team to start Ruff Sleepers?

At Ruff Sleepers, we love dogs and people. We believe that dogs are part of the family and that the relationship between homeless people and their dogs is even stronger because they spend 24/7 of their time and they support each other to face the daily difficulties of living rough.

Linda Castelazzi, third from the right, with Ruff Sleepers volunteers

What is the change you want to see through Ruff Sleepers?

We want to promote social inclusion. We want the community to understand that homeless people are just people that are having a hard time and need support. Their dogs sometimes are everything that is left in their lives. In Sydney, if you want to access crisis accommodation you need to give up your dog (there is only one shelter that accepts pets in all Sydney). This means that homeless people face the hard choice between a safe place to stay and their dogs, and many choose the dog. We hope to convince the community that pets are family members and we need to help people with pets to access crisis accommodation.

Can you tell us a story about the problems one of your clients faced, and how Ruff Sleepers were able to help them?

We have recently helped an old dog with cancer to get life-saving surgery. While grooming the dog and chatting with the owner, we realised the dog had a big lump on the belly and needed to see a vet. We organised the vet to come and the dog will undergo surgery next week to remove the cancer.

What do your clients say and think about Ruff Sleepers?

They are happy to see that someone is taking care of what they love the most. Many people do not want to have any kind of contact with other organisations. But they are happy when they see us because we help them to take care of their loved pet companions.

A dog being washed by Ruff Sleepers volunteers

Who are your main partners in running Ruff Sleepers?

We are 3 founders. Bronwen Dalton (now Head of Management at UTS) was my lecturer when I studied at UTS and Tully Rosen (now Deputy CEO of Homelessness NSW) another student. UTS is giving us a space to work, interns and volunteers. But we also collaborate with the vets of Hope Project (they take care of homeless people’s pets), Orange Sky Laundry and other local non-profit organisations. We believe in collaborations and sharing resources.

What are some of the main challenges you find?

Vet care is expensive, and it is difficult to act fast when there is an emergency! We hope to be able to do more in this field in the future. Also, it is difficult to fight the stigma around homeless people and their dogs. I hear all the time that homeless people are lazy and do not want to work. But the problem is much deeper. I believe that people tell themselves these lies because they do not want to accept a very painful reality: our society is broken, and we are closing our eyes when we see people desperate for help on the street.

Homelessness is strictly related to family abuse, violence, sexual abuse, drug addiction and poor mental health. Most people you see on the street have suffered the worst trauma. And still, instead of offering them a smile or a kind word, we pretend they aren’t there, and we say it’s their fault if they are in that situation. Do you really think someone would choose to live on the street?

Many people also believe that the homeless keep their dogs to beg. In my experience, this is completely wrong. Many homeless people feed their dog first. People sleeping rough also told me they try to remain clean from drugs or alcohol because they have to make sure to be alert in case something bad happens to their dog. The dog makes them feel responsible and, in many cases, saves them.

A dog with Ruff Sleepers volunteers

Where and when do you usually operate?

We work in Darlinghurst and Woolloomooloo.  We are working at a schedule.

Are there any upcoming projects that you are currently working on and would like to share?

We hope to be able to start soon an emergency vet service.

What support do you need for the project, and how can the community get involved?

We need donations to make this project real!

If you want to financially support their cause, you can buy their merchandise or donate here. For more information on volunteering opportunities in their upcoming projects, you can send them an email to ruffsleepers@gmail.com or reach out to them through to their Facebook page.

 


Lyka story: The best diet for dogs? Ask Sasha

As dog owners, we would do anything to give our puppers the best life ever, and it often starts with the quest to find the best diet for dogs. For so long, most dog owners have assumed that premium commercial food is the way to go, considering that the highest quality comes at a premium price. But is it true?

On the other hand, we’ve also noticed that raw diets for dogs are rising in popularity, as there is this emerging idea that dogs should eat the same way as their wild wolf-like ancestors. But has this been proven? 

David and Nicole shared their journey to find the best food for their lovely pup, Sasha, and why they finally trusted her diet to Lyka. The answer is simple: our dogs would tell us themselves if they could. When we give them the option, they just know what’s best for them.

Meet David and Nicole’s pretty pupper, Sasha

Sasha is a 13-month-old Finnish Lapphund. She is a gentle, warm, and loving puppy. She loves to cuddle and show affection. 

Starting with the wrong assumption 

Before Sasha entered David and Nicole’s lives, they assumed that “high quality” commercial dog food was the best diet for dogs, especially since it’s typically recommended by veterinarians. “How wrong we were!” they recall. It didn’t take them long to discover that the phrase “high quality” didn’t mean anything—it translates to “highly processed” and “highly additive-based”. David and Nicole said, “Not at all what we would have intentionally fed to our dog had we known beforehand.” 

On a mission to find real “high quality” food

Before finding Lyka, Sasha was on another company’s raw diet. After some research and a meeting with Sasha’s breeder, David and Nicole decided to pursue a raw diet. But it didn’t go as planned—Sasha rarely ate, and when she did, she had loose and foul-smelling bowel movements. “We knew it wasn’t right for her,” they admitted. 

the best diet for dogs
Sasha with her favourite Lyka bowl

Sasha’s new diet allows her to just be a puppy

Sasha has been on Lyka for over 6 months now. Since being on Lyka, Sasha’s gut health is stable, she’s maintaining a healthy weight, her 13-month-old coat glows, and every day her bowl is licked clean.

Meet Lyka, the natural choice for your pup’s health and wellbeing

Lyka believes that dogs should be as choosy as we are when it comes to food. That’s why Lyka is created carefully (and with love) to give puppers the food they deserve. Get your Starter Box and have your dogs do the sniff test. You’ll quickly see the difference!


Lyka story: Roxy and Sybil’s age-defying secret

Keeping your senior pupper excited at dinner time can be a challenge, especially if they’ve been a fussy eater since a young age. As a dog ages, their appetite decreases and they lose their sense of taste and smell, so it is not uncommon to see our golden oldies turn their nose up on food they previously consumed. Our Lyka customer Michelle Welton shared her story about her struggle to find the right food for her senior furry family members, Roxy and Sybil, and how her encounter with Lyka changed their declining health.

Tell us about your Lyka puppers

Roxy and Sybil have been a part of our family for many many years. Mark and I adopted Roxy at 6 weeks old before we started our family 13 years ago and we adopted Sybil at 6 weeks old before our daughter Mary Mae was born, 11 years ago.

First day in Australia 6 years ago (Roxy 7 years and Sybil 5 years)

Roxy and Sybil started their Australian journey back in 2013 when our family made the decision to immigrate from South Africa. Roxy was 7 years young and Sybil was 5 years young at the time. This journey was a long one for them. They spent 6 months in a home-based quarantine in South Africa with their “Granny” before embarking on a three-day flight to Australia. We could not wait to have our family complete after being separated from them for 6 months. The day arrived and we collected them at Spotswood quarantine facility. These two girls have had such a love of life, they immediately bounced back from the big journey and it was as if they’d always been here.

What initially drew you to try Lyka?

We have always battled to find a dog food that both Roxy and Sybil enjoyed. Both girls have been fussy eaters and we tried every vet brand and a formula food on the market. As the two girls started to age, we noticed a rapid decline in their health. This was hard for us, as they are naturally very active and fun loving dogs. We knew we needed to find a better solution. We then stumbled upon Lyka Dog Food online.

What changes did you see in Roxy and Sybil after changing to Lyka?

Honestly, since the very first meal, they have been hooked. Their health has improved so much and since day one, they both do spins and back-flips when they see the pouches come out the fridge. Not only do Roxy and Sybil love the Lyka, but our Daughter, Mary Mae, enjoys a taste tester when she prepares their food. The Lyka food has been kid approved….big thumbs up.

Mary Mae testing before her feeding duties

At ages 13 and 11, both Roxy and Sybil are back to enjoying active walks and chase their ball as if they are young again, thanks to Lyka dog food. I have attached here quite a number of photos to show how they have seemingly defied their age. I think they look as good today as the day they arrived in Australia 6 years ago.

Roxy (13 years) and Sybil (11 years) blissful on a walk

Lyka, your definite choice to healthy aging

At Lyka, we believe that eating fresh, natural foods is the key to optimal health and wellness, especially for our golden oldies. That is why we make our food with fresh, high quality, minimally processed ingredients. Get your 7-day Lyka trial box now and see how we can help pupper live their senior years at their fullest.


Anna and Lyka’s story

Lyka was built with a passion for dog health and well-being, and it will always be our driver.

Lyka’s story began with our founder Anna Podolsky’s devastating experience with her gorgeous Border Collie cross, Lyka. A few years back, Lyka started experiencing several health conditions, despite being fed with premium commercial pet food and exercised daily.

Lyka had always shed a lot of fur, but it got to the point where she was getting bald patches. Her energy levels were low and her teeth were decaying. Lyka’s vet warned Anna that some of Lyka’s teeth would need to removed in the coming years. She also had itchy ears and mouth, and she would scratch her mouth so hard that it formed scars. “It was so frustrating because I was doing everything by the book, yet she was unwell– and she was only 5 at the time!“, says Anna. “She is so important to me, and all I wanted was for her to be around as long as possible, enjoying life by my side.

As Anna conducted her own research to find the best dog food brand for Lyka, she found out that the commercial pet food supply chain is typically spread across multiple continents, and take months, if not years, to get to stores. Lyka’s “premium” pet food came with a shelf life of up to 25 years! She also found that the nutritional content was questionable, to say the least, and kibble was cooked at 200 degrees Celsius!

Mind-blown, Anna starting preparing home-made, fresh real food for Lyka. “I notice a change in my body when I follow a healthy diet with lots of fresh plant and animal foods. It made sense that Lyka would feel the same.“, says Anna.

Lyka’s transformation was incredible and noticeable within weeks. Not only was Lyka more energetic, but her coat was also glossier, and her skin was also no longer itchy. Even her tooth decay reversed. As a bonus, Anna also noticed her poo didn’t smell anymore and Lyka’s frequent passing wind had ceased completely.

Now at 10, Lyka is often mistaken for a puppy. Inspired by Lyka’s transformation, Anna started Lyka Pet Food to produce and deliver fresh, human-grade dog food using 100% wholefoods ingredients.

I’m so passionate about the benefits of a real food diet for dogs and disrupting a highly antiquated industry that was built for shelf life and not nutrition. All dogs should have the right to live out their best life, and it starts with what goes in their bowl,” says Anna.

To date, Lyka has flown to Chile, Argentina, Brazil, and the USA with Anna before then returning home to Australia. She’s now living her best life in Sydney, spending most days getting belly rubs at Lyka HQ.


Lyka story: Fresh Lyka diet has helped improve Donnie’s skin conditions

Imagine if your pup was sick, and even your vet wasn’t able to help! What would you do? This is exactly what happened with Eryn and her dog, Donnie. Read on to see how a Lyka diet transformed Donnie’s life.

Meet Eryn and her Kelpie, Donnie

Eryn’s dog, Donnie, had suffered from a persistent skin condition that made him lose fur clumps at a time. “I realised that even medication wouldn’t help his coat”, says Eryn, who studies design in Sydney.

Donnie has been Eryn’s best furry friend for nine years. She believes Donnie has a special sixth sense that makes him unique compared to other pups. “I always have to trick him into taking baths, and every time I try, he turns around and runs into the backyard. And trust me, I’ve tried so many ways; even treats don’t work anymore”, Eryn says.

The shift to real food

One day, Eryn’s brother introduced her to Lyka and suggested she let Donnie try Lyka’s fresh food. But before making any decisions about altering Donnie’s diet, Eryn decided to conduct her own research into the company. “Knowing that it’s human-grade food and freshly made, it was something I’d definitely provide for Donnie”, Eryn says. For today’s modern dog owner, it’s imperative to know what goes into the pet food you’re buying.

Real results beyond expectations

After feeding Donnie Lyka for about one month, Eryn started to notice real changes in her dog. Not only did his skin look better, but his coat was also fuller and shinier. The improvements didn’t stop there: Eryn also noticed that Donnie’s energy levels had become far higher than they were before introducing Lyka into his diet. He seemed so much happier and more excited to go for walks and outings.

The benefit that I experienced was the content in seeing Donnie transform. I found amazing progress after [Donnie started] eating Lyka foods”, Eryn says. “This is an experience that I would’ve never expected, and I’m grateful to have this product have a life-changing benefit for Donnie”.

Lyka, the best choice for your dog’s health

Built on the premise that dogs deserve the best quality of life, Lyka is redefining Australia’s pet food industry with their one-of-a-kind wholefood subscription.

The secret to a healthy glow is a diet of fresh, nutrient-rich foods. Are you ready to improve your dog’s nutrition? Kick-start their healthy eating goals with a Starter Box now. Build a solid foundation for your dog’s health, and let worrying be a thing of the past.


Richard has never been healthier since starting the Lyka diet

Lyka story: Richard’s homemade meals made easy

With many dogs experiencing health issues while eating commercial food, owners are turning away from legacy dog foods and instead are cooking for their dogs. Although the health benefits the dog’s experience are significant, it’s not always possible to fit the meal preparation into a busy schedule, as Sarah experienced with her dog, Richard.

Meet Sarah and her loyal companion, Richard

Sarah has a cute 12-year-old mixed-breed called Richard as her furry four-legged friend. One thing that stands out about Richard when you meet him is his unique sixth sense. “He knows exactly when your next move is, and getting directly in the way,” says Sarah, a Sydneysider.

In the past, Sarah used to spend her time cooking in bulk for Richard. Richard is prone to bouts of pancreatitis when fed commercial dog food, and therefore he requires a freshly cooked diet for his health. But it hasn’t always been easy for Sarah to consistently provide Richard homemade meals.

The challenge in making home cooked dog food

Homemade dog food requires forward-thinking and organisation to plan and prepare, and hence it is usually easier to cook large batches and freeze portions for future use. Sarah found it challenging to follow such a time-consuming cooking routine. “I used to cook Richard’s meals in bulk batches and froze them, but often ran out at the most inconvenient times,” says Sarah.

Sarah remembers the days when she spent a lot of time shopping for the ingredients, cooking up large batches of meat, pureeing vegetables, adding supplements, cleaning up, and the list goes on. “Often I would run out of meals, and maybe not have the time to cook for a week or so,” says Sarah. This was when she didn’t have the choice but fed Richard with commercial dog food, after which Richard would like clock-work, stretch in discomfort and get diarrhea.

Saving time without compromising quality

Things started to change when Sarah heard about Lyka through her vet (All Natural Vet Care). After visiting Lyka’s website, she was impressed with the ingredients, which were very similar to what she was cooking.  “The set up was easy, and the price was fair,” Sarah says. “I decided to give it a try and am so pleased I did.”… “Richard has never been healther”

Sarah is also happy that she doesn’t spend any more money than she did previously, and that’s not factoring in her time. “Since being on Lyka Chicken and Beef bowls, he hasn’t had a single flare up. No funky poo bags has been a major plus too,” says Sarah, “Richard is also a little prone to over eating but sticking with his Lyka meals and a couple of treats on top, he’s the perfect weight.”

Lyka, your fresh dog food subscription

Lyka is built on the premise that dogs deserve the best quality of life. They are disrupting the pet food industry through their 100% wholefood meal subscription. Lyka makes natural feeding easy through convenient deliveries and tailored portions for your individual dog.

Ready to improve your dog’s nutrition in an easy way? Kick start your dog’s healthy eating plans with a 7-day Lyka trial box and spend less time in the kitchen, and more time with your dogs!


Two Creeks Track is an underrated yet gorgeous dog friendly hike in Sydney

Sydney’s very own dog-friendly bush walk

News just in: team Lyka has discovered a cheeky (and underrated) dog-friendly hike in Sydney that you may not know about. Yes, it turns out Sydney does have it’s very own dog-friendly bush walk. Two Creeks Track is in Middle Harbour, a short 15 minutes from the city, but trust us, you and pupper will feel like you’re in the middle of the Australian bush.

Dogs aren’t allowed in any of our Australian national parks, and part of the Two Creek Track does go through Garigal National Park. So unfortunately, there is a section of this track that is a strict no-go for pupper. However, you and your dog have access to over 4km in track, which can easily be made into an 8km return hike.

There are frequent gullies, moderate elevation changes, and many cobble-stone steps make this a beautiful and heart-pumping hike from which both of you will get a great workout . The best part? This track is right beside the national park, so you still get to experience that raw, Australian natural beauty. It even gives the Spit to Manly walk a run for it’s money.

There are many entry points to the track, which makes this hike flexible to suit any need or distance. The dog friendly two creeks track in sydney
Here’s our suggested itinerary to make the most of the Two Creek Track with your dog.

  • Kick off your hike at Echo Point Park. There are plenty of parking spots if you’re driving in
  • Head towards to intersection, with the creek on your right, and walk down the concrete steps. You’ve made it onto the official Two Creeks Track!
  • Follow the creek along Middle Harbour. You’ll see some cute wooden bridges, rock overhangs and gorgeous ferns and mangroves along the way.
  • Eventually you’ll hit the Garigal National Park sign. This is your sign to turn right around and head along the same track for your return journey

Want to make a day out of it? We recommend having a Rose and barbecue at Echo Point Park before our after your hike. We hear it’s a pretty rad spot for sunsets watching (even pupper will agree if it means more time near the barbecues!).

Now For A Bit About Us:

We’re Lyka Pet Food and we’re on a mission to help puppers live their best life here in Australia. We create a joyful life for your dog through a custom plan of nutritious, fresh dog food, delivered to your front door. 



Use a pet resume to secure a pet friendly rental

How to build a pet resume to secure a pet-friendly rental

Let’s face it: it’s hard to find a rental property in Australia right now, even if you don’t own any pets. When you add your fur-family into the picture, it may seem close to impossible. Even with recent changes in body corporate laws in some cities, for example in Sydney, the supply of pet-friendly rentals is still small. Ultimately, it’s down to the landlord and their willingness to accept pets into their apartment or house.

Once you do find a property that allows pets and is within your budget, you will face another problem: competition from other rental-seekers, many of which don’t have pets. Consciously or unconsciously, landlords may prefer applications without pets. The overall perception is that pets are more likely to damage a property, so even the pet-friendly landlords may opt for tenants without pets. Mission impossible, right?

One thing can that you can do to dramatically improve your chances of finding a rental is put together a pet resume. Landlords are looking for tenants that 1) will pay their rent on time and 2) won’t damage their property. By providing a pet resume, you will demonstrate your responsibility as a pet owner and this will increase their confidence regarding point two.

Finding a rental property with your dog

So, what is a pet resume? Basically, it’s a compilation of information about your pet, that demonstrates both your pet’s qualities and your accountability. Here are some of the items you should include when building your pet resume, to highlight both these elements:

  • Cover Letter: This is your opportunity to summarise your pet and inject some fun and creativity into your pet resume. Include information about their history, personality and even a photo for extra character.
  • Vaccinations & Vet Certificates: Showing that your pet is up-to-date with their vet visits, is micro-chipped and de-sexed will demonstrate that you’re organised and on top of looking after your pet.
  • Council Registrations: In most cities, registering your pet with the council is mandatory, and your landlord will want to know that you are following your council’s requirements.
  • Training Certificates: If your dog has done puppy preschool, obedience training or other sports such as agility or fly-ball, include their certificates in your pet resume. This will demonstrate that they are obedient and are less likely to misbehave and disrupt the neighbours.
  • References from past landlords: Get your past landlords to write a reference letter for your pet. A recommendation from them will go a long way, especially if you can demonstrate that your pet has been a fantastic tenant in the past.
  • References from others who know your dog: If there are other people who know your dog well, such as dog-walkers, pet-sitters or even friends, a letter from them can be used as character references for your pet and their behaviour.

One other point to consider is offering an additional pet bond in your rental application. A pet bond will give your landlord reassurance that if something does happen, you will take the accountability and pay for your pet’s damage.

Best of luck with the house-hunting! Once you find and settle into your fur-home, you’ll be able to focus on the fun things, such as setting up your house to make your pet feel at home.


The best beaches to go with your dog in Sydney

Sydney’s most underrated dog beaches

Sydney’s summer has been a scorcher this year, making cooling down at the beach an absolute must. If you’re anything like us, you’re probably looking to go to a beach where your fur-kid can also join. They need to cool down with all that fur after all!

That’s why we’ve curated our top picks of the most underrated beaches in Sydney: beaches you might not have been to, but you definitely should visit (we’ll tell you why).  Remember to slip, slop, slap, and provide your dog (and yourself) with plenty of water!  Enjoy the weather pawrents.

Sirius Cove, Mosman

Dog off-leash hours: All day Monday- Friday. Before 9am and after 4pm Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays

Why it’s underrated? The picnic-friendly park behind the beach.

Sirius Cove is a stunner, for both pups and humans alike. It’s the perfect location for a family day out with the gorgeous green park, complete with picnic benches and shady trees. The best part is dogs are allowed off-leash in both the beach and the park, during the designated hours. There’s also a foreshore track that leads you through lush forest to some hidden coves.

Rose Bay Foreshore, Rose Bay

Dog off-leash hours: Before 8.30am and after 4.30pm

Why it’s underrated? The sheer length of beach and gradual water depth

The Rose Bay foreshore, also called Dumaresq Reserve, is a hidden gem tucked away in the Eastern Suburbs. During low tide, a huge sandbank forms which gives you and your dog a tonne of walking and playing space. The water deepens very gradually, making it the perfect spot for dogs who aren’t confident swimmers or simply still getting used to the water.

Bicentennial Park, Glebe

Dog off-leash hours: All times

Why it’s underrated? The gorgeous harbour views

Okay so technically this isn’t a beach, but Bicentennial Park sits right up against the water, giving your dog direct water access. Just be sure to keep them west of the canal. The view is striking, and there is plenty of grassy space to sit down and soak it all it. If you’re looking to combine your beach trip with a walk, this is an ideal starting point for the Glebe Foreshore loop walk.


Three reasons why you should have an office pet

Three reasons why you should have an office pet

Pet-friendly offices are becoming more and more common in Australia and around the world. And it’s no wonder why. There are many benefits of having pets around the office, here are just 3 of them:

 

1. Pets increase morale and reduce stress

Let’s face it: things can get pretty stressful at work. Whether it’s a looming deadline or tough presentation, we all have those days in the office when you feel on edge and mentally exhausted. Wouldn’t it be amazing to have a furry buddy in those moments to help you chill? Studies have proven that patting an animal can help reduce stress, calm you down and even reduce blood pressure. Therapy animals are used extensively in hospitals and retirement homes as a way to lift spirits. Having a pet in the office is a very simple (and cost-effective) way to make those benefits available to you and your team and in turn increase overall workforce performance.

 

2. Having an office pet promotes exercise, which increases productivity

If you have a dog (or cat) in your workspace, you will need to take them out to the toilet and give them water and food throughout the day. Even though these activities may seem like time wasters, getting your blood flowing has been shown to increase concentration and productivity. Many businesses recognise the cognitive benefits of exercise and encourage intermittent exercise initiatives, for example, stretching or standing every hour. However, it’s very hard to maintain high employee participation with these initiatives. With an office pet, on the other hand, you are more or less forced to get up and attend to them regularly. Pet-friendly offices reap the benefits of employees exercising and to the employees it won’t feel like exercise at all.

 

3. It makes life more convenient for your employees

Letting your pawrent employees take their pet with them to work can help make their lives easier, and the benefits aren’t just intangible ones. If an employee relies on a dog walker or dog daycare, allowing them to bring their dog to work may save them hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars annually. Having their pet at work may also mean the employee is more flexible with their available hours. For example, it might be easier for them to do overtime, as they won’t be in a rush home to “walk the dog” or “feed the cat”.

Overall, a pet-friendly workplace is a fantastic idea, and provide many benefits for both employees and the employer.

Office pets – we say yes!


How to teach your dog to fetch

How to teach your dog to fetch

Playing fetch is fantastic exercise and mental stimulation for your dog. It’s especially beneficial for high energy dogs, as they can burn their energy more effectively playing fetch compared to walking. We all have those days when we don’t feel like going for a long walk and this is when fetch can come to the rescue. You can play almost anywhere: indoors, in the backyard, at the beach or in the park.

So, playing fetch is awesome. But, first of all, you will need to teach your dog how to play. Although it’s easier to training growing pups, it’s never too late: you CAN teach an old dog new tricks.

It’s best to structure your dog’s training around each of the 4 stages of playing fetch:

  1. Chasing
  2. Collecting
  3. Retrieving
  4. Dropping

How to structure your dog's fetch training

Chasing & Collecting

Dogs generally fall into one of two buckets when it comes to chasing the ball.

The first group of dogs are the eager chasers. Working dogs and retrievers, in particular, have a natural tendency to chase after the ball. If that’s the case for your dog, you’re lucky! You can move on to the retrieve & drop training.

The second group of dogs aren’t particularly interested in the ball. They’re the type that look at you after you’ve thrown the ball and you know they’re thinking “what are you doing, human?” This group requires a bit more persistence. You can start by throwing the ball a short distance, and encourage your dog to get it. Every time they do chase after it, reward them with pats and “good girl” or “good boy”. It’s best not to use treats at this point, and your dog may lose interest in the ball.

Dropping

Before we move onto the retrieving step, we need to work backward and teach your dog to understand the dropping concept.

Here is how you can approach the ball dropping training:

  • When your dog has the ball in their mouth, get their attention with a treat
  • Once they drop the ball to get the treat, say “drop” (or whichever command you want to use)
  • When they do this, reward them with the treat and say “good girl” or “good boy”
  • Quickly give/ throw the ball back to them. Some dogs are reluctant to give the ball to you because they think they won’t get it back. You need to build their trust and show them that they will get it back so they are less reluctant to part ways with the ball
  • Repeat this sequence a few times a day, trying to rely less on the treats as your dog begins to understand the drop command
  • Eventually, they will respond to “drop” without any treats. Good dog!

Retrieving

We’ve all seen that dog, who fetches the ball but then runs around in circles or in the complete opposite direction to its owner. Many dogs will think that the game is actually to keep the ball away from you. The goal of this training is to teach them that the game is actually chasing the ball, and the sooner they drop the ball for you, the sooner they can chase it again.

Once your dog is confidently dropping the ball on command, the retrieving part is easier. They should already get the sense that dropping the ball is only a short-term state and be excited about chasing the ball again.

  • Start by throwing the ball a few metres away
  • Call “bring it here”, “come” (or whichever command you want to use)
  • Say the “drop” command
  • Once you get the ball back, reward them the same way as before, with pats and lots of positive validation
  • Slowly increase the distance you throw the ball. Soon your dog will get the hang of it, and you will be to throw as far as you want.

And there you have it – say hello to your new super fetcher! Remember to always use the right type of ball for your dog, and never a tennis ball.


A dog-friendly Byron Bay getaway

A Dog-Friendly Byron Bay Getaway

Ahhh Byron Bay – stunning beaches, cute cafes and amazing walks, all less than 2 hours’ drive from Brisbane. If you’re planning a getaway to Byron Bay, there’s no reason your dog shouldn’t come with you.

Here are our top picks for dog-friendly activities in Byron Bay:

Dog-friendly beaches

Hit up of one Byron’s many beaches where dogs are allowed to roam off leash. The closest ones to town are Belongil Beach and Suffolk Park/Tallows Beach. Have a look at Byron Bay’s official visitor website for the full list, and for the details on which parts of the beaches permit off-leash dogs.

Dog-friendly walks

Although many of Byron Bay’s walking trails are within National Parks and prohibit dogs, there is a few where you can bring your pup. One of them is Rocky Creek Dam, which a beautiful picnic area where dogs can be with you on-leash.

Dog-friendly eats:

Many cafes and restaurants in Byron Bay’s town centre have outdoor seating, and let you sit outside with your dog. The Treehouse on Belongil has a gorgeous dog-friendly deck as well as tasty food.

 

Dog-friendly activities

Give your dog a true farm experience by taking them with you to The Farm Byron Bay. Stroll around the property, check out the animals and produce, then have a bite to eat at the café or bakery. Dogs are allowed on a leash, except for indoor in the restaurant.

Dog-friendly accommodation

The Byron Bay Rainforest Resort offers pet-friendly cottages, plus a tonne of walking tracks on their property that you can enjoy with your dog.

Now For A Bit About Us:

We’re Lyka Pet Food and we’re on a mission to help puppers live their best life here in Australia. We create a joyful life for your dog through a custom plan of nutritious, fresh dog food, delivered to your front door.



The dog friendly Manly to Spit walk

The Dog-Friendly Spit to Manly walk

Move over Bondi to Coogee, the Sydney’s North Shore has an ocean-side walk that will give you a run for your money.  And dare we say it’s even more dog-friendly.

Many people don’t take their dog on the Spit to Manly walk because the official path passes through Dobroyd Head, where dogs are prohibited. But there is an alternative, dog-friendly route, which we think has even better views!

Here’s our guide to the dog-friendly Spit to Manly walk:

  • Start Point: Fisher Bay Walk (the North side of the Spit Bridge)
  • End Point: Manly Wharf
  • Distance: ~9km
  • Time required: 2 – 3 hours
  • Dog-Friendly Pit Stops: Clontarf Beach, Tania Park, North Harbour Reserve

Spit to Manly Walk Dog Friendly

The path starts on the north side of the Spit Bridge. Find the Fisher Bay Walk to the right once you cross the bridge, and follow it until you hit Sandy Bay Road.

Pit Stop 1:

Within minutes you will hit your first beach: Clontarf Beach, a popular dog hang out with crystal clear water.

Afterwards, find Monash Crescent, and follow it until it meets with Clontarf Track. Normally you would continue on this track along the coast. However, with your dog, you will need to take the back streets to avoid the National Park. Turn left at Castle Rock Trail and walk up to Cutler road. Continue along 3 more backstreet roads (Culter Road, Vista Avenue and Bareena Drive) and in a few minutes, you will reach Tania Park.

Pit Stop 2:

Give your dog a chance to let off some steam at the off-leash park while you soak in the amazing harbour views.

After the stop, follow Fisher Street and the zig-zags down to Forty Basket Beach. Here you have met back with the official walk. Continue along the coast, with the water on your right.

Pit Stop 3:

In just a few hundred metres you will come to North Harbour Reserve: a dog off- leash beach, where you can let your down cool off with a swim.

Now you just follow the trail along the coast until you hit Manly Wharf!

Now For A Bit About Us:

We’re Lyka Pet Food and we’re on a mission to help puppers live their best life here in Australia. We create a joyful life for your dog through a custom plan of nutritious, fresh dog food, delivered to your front door.



Make your dog feel at home, in your home

Make your dog feel at home, in your home

Most Australians view their pet as part of the family, and the “fur baby” trend is only rising. If you’re like most Aussies, you provide your pet with the best veterinary care, groom them and take them along to family activities. But is your home as pet friendly as it can be?

 

Lyka Pet Food was featured in Mydeal.com.au’s recent blog post on How You Can Make Your Pet Feel Like Part Of The Family.

Lyka’s tips on how to create the perfect pet environment:

 

Multiple beds

Most pet owners have one bed for their pet, usually in a quiet spot where the pet can sleep without being disturbed. To make them feel even more integrated, set up a second bed in a central part of the house, like the living room, so they can lounge comfortably while hanging out with the family.

 

Furniture ramps

Do you have a small dog that struggles to get up on furniture? Make it easier for them by setting up a ramp that allows them to easily climb onto the couch or bed for a snuggle. You can control when they are allowed to go up on the furniture, by simply removing the ramp.

 

Accessible toys

Playing with your pet is a true bonding experience. But can your pet easily access their toys? Rather than keeping them stored in a cupboard or box, always have a few in easily accessible areas, like on their bed or on the ground. To keep them from getting bored, rotate the toys that are “out”.

 

Pet door

If you live in a home with a balcony, courtyard or backyard, a pet door is a great idea for your pet to come and go as they please, and never miss out on exciting family moments. If you’re renting or don’t want to damage your doors, there’s a multitude of foldable screens with pet doors that you can easily install.

 

Making your pet feel like part of the family is not just about setting up the house to accommodate them. It’s also important to integrate your pet with your family’s routine as much as possible. From taking them on your morning run, to bringing them along to coffee or brunch, every opportunity they get to participate in family activities will make them feel more like a member of the pack.


Collar or Harness: which is better for my dog?

Collar or harness: which is best for your dog?

Regardless of what kind of dog you have, one thing’s certain: they need and love to be walked!

But to collar or to harness, that is the question. Collars used to be the go-to for the majority of pet owners, but harnesses are becoming increasingly popular. Both have their benefits depending on your dog’s size, breed and temperament.

Below, we’ll help you decide which will work best for your pup. And remember: whichever option you choose, ensure your dog is wearing an ID tag at all times with pup’s name, your phone number and address and, if applicable, any serious health conditions.

dog harness collar

Collars

Dog collars are the traditional way of restraining and identifying pups and they suit most dogs. When fitting one, make sure you can fit two fingers between your dog’s neck and the collar – if you can’t, it’s too tight. There are several different kinds:

  • A flat leather collar is long-lasting; a nylon version is good for puppers who enjoy a dip.
  • Martingale collars or slip collars are designed for escape artists who are adept at slipping out of their collars. They’re especially good for greyhounds and other breeds with thick necks and/or small heads. They close around the neck when the dog pulls without choking the dog.
  • Choker chains (the name is fairly descriptive) or prong collars are designed to tighten around the neck when a dog pulls at the leash, causing discomfort. Some dog-owners use them as a training method but here at Lyka, we do not recommend them. A much kinder and more effective way of training your dog is with positive reinforcement.


Pros of collars

Collars suit most dogs, they’re easy to slip on and they’re comfortable for constant wear. The types of dogs that typically should be using collars are:

  • Well trained dogs: If your dog is well trained on a leash and always walks by your side, collars are fine to use, as they are not putting any strain on their necks.
  • Dogs who dislike harnesses: Some dogs just don’t like the feeling of wearing a harness, no matter how much you try.
  • Dogs going on quick errands: Sometimes it’s  more convenient to slip a lead onto a collar if you’re in a rush. If you’re just going for a quick outing, there is no harm is leaving the harness at home.
  • Dogs with long hair: Collars don’t pull in the way that harnesses can, so to avoid catching your dog’s hair or getting it in a knot, a collar may be the most suitable choice.


Cons of collars

Avoid walking your dog with a collar if your dog has a history of eye problems, neck or back injuries or spinal malformations. If your dog is a puller, a collar is not a great choice because they could injure themselves or restrict their breathing. Collars are also not the best choice for delicate toy breeds, brachycephalic (flat-faced) breeds and those with bulging eyes, due to breathing issues and risk of serious injury.

dog harness collar

Harnesses

Your pup is perfectly behaved, right? They never wriggle out of their collar, tangles themselves up in your legs or attempts to get airborne after that pigeon. Oh, they do? Well, they may be an ideal candidate for a harness, which offers more control.

A harness goes around the dog’s chest, shoulders, upper back and front legs, which distributes pressure over a larger area than a collar. There are a couple of different kinds:

  • Front-attaching harnesses to which you attach the leash at the front. These provide owners with better control and discourage pulling, but dogs may get tangled more easily.
  • Back-attaching harnesses to which you attach the leash at the back. They’re good for smaller dogs or dogs that don’t pull.


Pros of harnesses

Harnesses are a better choice for certain breeds such as miniature poodles, which are more prone to tracheal collapse.

As mentioned above, any pup with breathing difficulties – this includes flat-faced breeds such as pugs and French bulldogs – will also do better walking with a harness; likewise delicate toy breeds who risk neck injury if they pull with a collar on.

Harnesses can also be great for older dogs or those with injuries – you can help them get up more easily by lifting them by the harness.

The types of dogs that typically should be using a harness are:

  • Dogs in training: if you’re training your dog, you will have better leverage and control with a harness, especially a harness that has its lead attachment at the front/chest area. Harnesses with lead attachments at the back are less effective.
  • Dogs that pull: If your dog is a puller (we all know them!) using a collar can make them prone to neck injuries. You’re better off using a harness so that the force of their pull is distributed across their body.
  • Dogs that need assistance: Harnesses are a great tool if your dog needs a bit of help. For example, senior dogs that need help getting up the stairs, or for dogs that are lucky enough to be joining you for outdoor activities such as hiking or boating.
  • Scared or skittish dogs: If your dog gets nervous in certain situations, harnesses are the way to go, as they are very secure. A nervous dog is much more likely to slip out of a collar than a harness.


Cons of harnesses

Harnesses take longer to fasten than a collar, so they’re not as convenient. They’re also bulkier and less comfortable – some dogs take some time to learn to walk in them – and they may not suitable for all-the-time wear, but with so many different types out available, there should be a style and fabric to suit your pup.

Lyka: optimal balance of omega-3s for joint health

Whether you choose a harness or collar for your walks, Lyka’s delicious and nutritious meals will give your pup the energy and nutrients they need to keep going. PLUS! The optimal balance of omega-3’s will help to promote joint health to help your pup run, jump and play – and of course, do all those zoomies! Order a Starter Box today and join the fresh dog food revolution.