May 22nd, 2009, 08:18 AM
Is anyone familiar with this product, especially the lamb? (raw,not the freeze dried items). I would like to hear from those who use it. Here in my area, no one sells it. The biggest seller is Nature's Variety, Primal, Bravo and K-9 Kraving in Maryland.
I have some severe issues with Nature's Variety because we noticed, along with friends of ours, that they advertise on the raw products as "ground bone" Yes, we all know this is a 'bone in product' like all of them, but I find it very hard to 'digest' (no pun intended) that what N.V. considers to be ground bone, is not at all. They use actual LARGE bone pieces in the shape of stones and jagged bone fragments.
About 100 of us have done the test with one of their lamb patties and to our amazement came up with HUGE amounts of what would be allowed legal in our area. The amounts are over what a dog can digest. Any NV users, do the test yourself. Take a lamb patty and place it in hot water...wait for all the bones to hit the bottom...you will change your mind about feeding the raw NV diet.
I am interested in seeing responses from current NV users, as well as Stella & Chewy's & k9 kraving.
May 22nd, 2009, 12:56 PM
I just save my self the money and time and feed whole raw items (1/2 chickens, chunks of beef, organs, etc). Takes the guessing out of what you're actualy feeding when buying already prepared patties.
July 13th, 2009, 09:37 PM
I started feeding my three dogs the Stella and Chewy's Raw Lamb patties a month ago at the suggestion of a woman working at the Pet Foods Market where I buy my food. She suggested that I start feeding raw because, between the 3 of my dogs, I have to manage a range of issues such as hypothyroidism, allergies/skin problems and anal gland issues - she thought that feeding raw would improve or eliminate some of these problems. She also suggested using the Missing Link supplement in addition to feeding Stella and Chewy's as that is what she feeds her own dogs and has really liked the results.
I spent about 1 1/2 weeks transitioning my boys from their old food (Orijen 6 Fish - not raw) to the Stella and Chewy's + Missing Link. So far, so good. They LOVE the food (not that they were picky eaters before) and, although ground bone is listed as an ingredient, I have yet to see any bone fragments and I expect that I never will. My dog with the skin problems is already shedding noticeably less. I also have a friend who has been feeding her dog the Stella and Chewy's Raw Lamb for 4-6 months with great results (he had allergies and was a very picky eater). The only downside I see is the expense - if I had three 80 lb dogs I'm not sure I would be able to feed them Stella and Chewy's but, fortunately, that is not the case!
September 22nd, 2010, 01:08 AM
I have had the same problem with Nature's Variety Instinct Raw lamb patties and medallions.
I know this is an old thread but, here is my story.
I'll try and make a long story short. Max, my dog, had been having colitis for several months. I switched him to a RAW diet and thankfully his flare ups instantly stopped. For those interested I also supplemented with slippery elm bark, fish oil, pre & probiotics and enzymes.
Recently, we needed to board Max and I decided to try Nature's Variety because they add Montmorillonite Clay (bentonite clay) which acts much like activated charcoal. I give Max activated charcoal when he has a flare up because it is non toxic and removes toxins and bacteria. Basically, it firms up loose stool. I figured this would help him if he had a stress colitis attack while being boarded - it had been over a year since he was last boarded and didn't know how he may react.
Back to the story.... I began feeding him the NV lamb a few days before boarding to make sure he liked it and had no problems with it. Thankfully I tested it out previously because the morning of Max's first boarding day he woke my husband up at 5:30am with the need to potty. He had a portion of mucousy stool -- similar to a colitis flare up.
We decided investigate. These are the things you do when you have a dog with constant colitis. Poop is often the topic of conversation. Upon investigation, we noticed the mucous section to have large bone fragments. We suspected the NV since that was the only new thing in his diet. Sure enough, we found many large bone fragments in both the patties and medallions. The largest piece was aprox. the circumference of a pea. The others were not as large but, nothing I would label as "ground". According to Nature's Variety, they use a "1/4 inch grinding plate".
Max had no problem when switched back to his regular diet which consists of Pepperdogz, Primal, Steve's and Stella & Chewy's dehydrated.
The Nature's Variety bone fragments just didn't agree with my 20# mini labradoodle. Also, I noticed these fragments were hard like a marrow bone or other weight bearing bone. I don't know what bones they use in their ground product but, they were very hard not soft like say a chicken rib.
That is my experience. I returned the product and no longer purchase Nature's Variety. I really wish they used a smaller grind because they have a nice variety of meats but, it's too risky in my opinion and thankfully, the commercial raw market has many choices these days - especially locally in the Seattle area.
October 9th, 2010, 12:44 PM
A lot of people here feed Mountain Dog Food. I don't, for the same reason.I can SEE the chunks of bone and hear them going down. I don't like that.
I was feeding Legacy, but I stopped. It had so little oil and so few Omegas that his fur was dry, brittle and nasty looking. I've added coconut oil to his diet and the change is amazing.
I've talked to others with the same issue - dry fur, losing fur on Legacy.
He's now back on 6-fish.....
with a small freezer and a allergic dog who can't eat birds, raw is a challenge. More than I thought it would be.
April 24th, 2012, 06:50 PM
I'm new to BARF, and the bones have concerned me from the start. I had to switch Lola to a no starch food because of yeast. I chose Bravo and while she loves it, I kept finding 1/4 inch bone fragments which when combined with and odd semi-choking sound my toy poodle started making, prompted me to call Bravo about this concern. First off, though the lady that answered was nice...or I should say courteous, she had few answers.
The bones I have found appeared to be hard, but with semi-sharp edges with the largest pieces being about 1/4' irregularly shaped.
This just didn't seem like a good idea to me so I called....I was told the bones are "cartillage-like, and soft". I figured that was good enough for me until I found she had eaten around one and I picked it up, washed it off and tried to bite through it...(gross yes...but...functionally useful for my purposes). I could not make a dent, so I got out my buck knife and tried to cut it.....I was able to put an impression in it, but not cut through it.
I moved her over to Stella and Chewys...I hope I don't find the same issues with them....
What's the big deal anyway in taking these bones down to almost powder level??? Isn't the nutrition the same and just less hazardous???
Anyway...her skin has cleared up...and I hope its not a coincidence or the Covian (antibiotic) the dumb ass vet gave her (with my dumb ass permission). Long story....
Right now I'm a huge chearleader for these foods but if a bone killed or injured my dog, I'd make it my mission to end that company.
They are supposed to be advocates for greater health so they need to be held accountable.