Picking up the can, my friend, Liz, read the label.
‘Oh Tarnia, you can’t feed her this!’ she said.
Like me, Liz was a dachshund mum and her precious Frankie was besties with my beloved girl, Pippi.
Liz’s sausage dog was dining on grilled salmon, lean chicken and fresh organic vegetables.
And his glossy coat showed it!
‘I’m the wurst dog mum ever!’ I decided.
Still, not quite one, Pippi was a pampered pup.
My daughter, Summer, then seven, my partner, Armond, 48, and I doted on her, dressing her up in girly outfits – even a bikini to wear to the beach!
Now I upped the ante, filling my trolley with gourmet Atlantic salmon and top quality minced meat.
It was worth it to keep my tiny baby healthy and happy.
For Pippi’s first birthday, we invited eight of her favourite pals to a paw-some hotdog party.
I lovingly prepared a cake out of mince, which my girl, a vision in her bright pink gown, scoffed!
All her furry friends got a doggy bag, with a ball and a toy bone to take home.
A few months later, Pippi met a hot little sausage dog named Charlie. Hitting it off, she fell pregnant!
Growing my grand babies in her belly, our Princess received royal treatment.
I massaged her paws with balm and bought her human nipple ointment to harden her teets before the little ones latched on.
‘Sweetie, are you hungry again?’ I’d soothe, lightly frying her favourite meal – chicken breast, spinach and cottage cheese.
We had no idea how many puppies Pippi was carrying, but Armond didn’t want to part with them all.
‘Let’s keep one!’ he said.
Knowing how hard it’d be to choose, we decided to adopt the firstborn boy.
After nine weeks, Pippi delivered four cute babies.
Ringo, the runt of the litter arrived first, followed by his brother Chubs.
Then Mavis, with Maggie bringing up the rear.
My mum Judy, 63, knitted wee beanies and sweaters for them, and I bought them some tiny pyjamas.
Saying goodbye to every one bar Ringo was excruciating. But we’d vetted each fur-ever family to make sure they were worthy of our tiny snags.
To make our Ringo big and strong, like his mum, he chowed down on broccoli omelettes and roast vegetables.
Now, we’re building our own home and Armond, an engineer, has drawn up the blueprints for Pippi and Ringo’s very own $25,000 bedroom.
Amazingly, he’s even designed a state-of-the-art tunnel, which leads directly from their bedroom out to the backyard.
Our pooches are part of the family and I wouldn’t change a thing!