Sundays with Justine Cuenco & Kodah

Welcome to our "Sundays with..." series, featuring modern dog parents who inspire us! Today we speak with Content and Digital Strategist, Justine Cuenco and her dog Kodah about tricks & treats for the modern dog parent.

Tell us about your dog. What’s your dog’s name and what is the meaning behind it? 

We loved the name Dakota which translates to “friend”  or “ally” in the Sioux language. We abbreviated it, added an “H” and we landed on Kodah! 

What breed are they? What’s their personality like? 

Kodah is a wirehaired pointing griffon. He’s the ultimate couch snuggler but loves a good long hike on the trails. He’s the smartest dog I’ve ever met. 

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How did Kodah become a part of your life? Were dogs always a part of your family? 

I grew up always having a dog in the family. My childhood dog passed away just last year. My partner Marcus had always wanted to have a dog of his own. Life seemed to slow down and we finally had time to make an addition to the family. I guess you can call him our pandemic pup. 

What does your typical Sunday morning routine look like? Walk Sundays’ audience through your typical Sunday routine with your dog in as much detail as possible with timestamps. What time do you wake up? What time do you eat breakfast and what do you typically eat? What parallels are there between your nutrition and that of your dog’s? 

Sunday’s are my absolute favorite days of the week. Things just seem to be more relaxed on Sundays. 

Kodah usually wakes us up for a morning walk/bathroom break so he can make room for breakfast. 

Kodah is still a growing puppy and eats 3 times a day. During this time I serve him his first meal. While he inhales his food, I typically fast until noon but I keep it light with an iced coffee. 

We hit the trails for about an hour. We especially love the Bluff Creek trail in our neighborhood. He loves to spot birds in the trees :) 

Kodah is OUT for a few hours. He’s still sleeps a ton as puppies do. I like to take the quiet times and clean the house up a bit, perhaps some laundry. 

Sure enough, Kodah is awake and HUNGRY. We serve him his 2nd bowl of Sundays for the day. Feeding time is truly his favorite time. Now this is MY first meal of the day and there’s nothing better than a well rounded salad bowl. I like to keep it fresh and healthy. 

We always head to the beach to watch the sunset. Kodah has become quite the beach dog but is still working on swimming in the ocean. 

After Sunset 
Kodah has his final last meal of the day. We like to make dinner fun and exercise his mind with some dog puzzles. He can always smell and find Sundays from across the room. 

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What self-care rituals do you reserve for Sundays that are non-negotiables and essential to you? For example, yoga, meditation, journaling, cooking, going for a walk, etc. 

Sundays are for NOT working. We have a no work policy and it helps me recharge for the coming week. We also love to have an indulgent meal whether we cook or order take out. This usually involves some type of carb (hmm pasta). 

How has your Sunday morning routine changed over the years, and especially since getting a dog?

Kodah keeps us active. His breed is highly active and for the sake of our furniture, we need to burn that energy. We’ve found a new love for nature trying to find the best places to explore with Kodah. 

How has being a dog parent enhanced your life? Do you consider your dog to be a member of the family? 

Kodah has brought us so much joy especially during these unprecedented times. He’s taught us responsibility and selflessness. We now wonder how we ever got through life without him. 

What tips or advice do you have for a new dog parent that wants to ensure their dog is happy and healthy?

Make sure you make the time and energy to be the best educated dog parent you can be. Do the research on their psychology and their food! If you can communicate with them and serve them the best dog food possible, you’re already ahead of it! 

Try Healthy, Easy Sundays