Review: NutriSource training treats

We are always on the hunt for soft, tiny training treats around here! As I mentioned earlier, we have “training stations” in many areas of our house, so having a stash of small, chewy treats is important to us. I also take a lot of soft treats with us in our bait bag on every walk, which we use to reward Eden for polite leash behavior and to continue our classical conditioning protocol with Pyrrha’s reactivity.

Review of NutriSource training treats | Doggerel

So, I was excited for the girls to try this offering from Chewy.com; they got to sample NutriSource Soft & Tender Chicken Dog Treats. A 6-oz. bag sells for $3.29, which is quite affordable, by way of high-quality training treats. (I’m used to shelling out $5 to $7 for a bag of well-made, healthy, soft training treats.) I have never bought a NutriSource product for our dogs before, so I was eager to check these treats out.

Review of NutriSource training treats | Doggerel

The tiny bones are soft and very easy to break in two. They’re also not too crumbly, so they will make for perfect training treats.

Review of NutriSource training treats | Doggerel
Mostly in-focus photo of the girls, vying for their treats.

The dogs, as you can see, were very eager to try them! Chicken is the first ingredient, followed by pea flour and barley flour.

I also like that these treats are made in the United States. While that fact is not a necessary guarantee of quality, it’s a heck of a lot better than any pet product that comes from China.

What’s your go-to brand for training treats?

Disclosure: We were provided with a bag of these treats from Chewy.com in exchange for our honest review.

Review: Wysong Dream Treats

I’ve always been interested in raw food for the dogs. I don’t think we have the budget, courage, or freezer space to attempt it right now, but I have read a lot about its benefits, and I know many of you love raw feeding (for good reasons). So, although we aren’t feeding raw now, we are still committed to high-quality food and treats.

Wysong Dream Treats | Doggerel

That said, I was interested for the dogs to try these treats from Wysong, a company that I was previously unfamiliar with. The treats are marketed as “raw meat” treats, and we tried the chicken variety. I think one of the most interesting aspects of these treats is that they are suitable for dogs, cats, and ferrets. I love that; I don’t think I’ve ever seen treats that were sold that way, and it surprises me that more pet products aren’t, as so many households have more than one type of animal. While we don’t have cats or ferrets in our household (which is good for the longevity of any such cats or ferrets), I can imagine this product would be appealing to people who had multiple types of pets in their home.

Wysong Dream Treats | Doggerel

The treats come in these large, soft discs, which are easy to feed as a big single-serve treat or to break up into tiny bits. The girls, of course, love them! The chicken Dream Treats are currently selling for $10.39 per bag at Chewy.com.

If you have multiple types of pets in your household, do you have any treats you feed them that all the animals can eat?

Disclosure: Chewy.com provided us with a bag of these treats in exchange for our honest review.

Review: Natural Balance holiday pack

Just in time for the holidays, Pyrrha got to try the Natural Balance holiday pack for dogs. A box full of meaty treats and food? That’s all she really wants for Christmas.

Natural Balance holiday pack review | Doggerel

The holiday pack comes with the following goodies:

  • L.I.T (Limited Ingredient Treats) sweet potato & chicken formula dog treats
  • Ultra-premium chicken formula canned dog food
  • Premium turkey formula dog food roll

The ingredients for these products are also upstanding, and the first item on the ingredients list is always the main food item (e.g., turkey comes first for the turkey dog food roll).

Natural Balance holiday pack review | Doggerel

Pyrrha will scarf down just about anything, but she was quite eager for these sweet potato treats. The fact that they’re marketed for “small breeds” doesn’t bother her a bit. In fact, I like the smaller-sized treats in general, because they help with portion control. Pyrrha, like many dogs, acts like she’s never been fed in her life when confronted with treats.

Natural Balance holiday pack review | Doggerel

Our trainer, Deven, likes to use these Natural Balance food rolls in her training classes, because they are conveniently packaged, easy to distribute, and very soft and smelly for hard-working pups. I’m always happy to receive high-quality food supplements myself, just to give Pyrrha something a little special to spice up her daily meals.

The dog holiday pack is on sale for $5.99 at Chewy right now, which is a pretty great deal. I was surprised myself! A bag of high-quality treats alone would usually go for more than that. In short, we were pleased and impressed, and Pyrrha keeps begging for more!

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Have you ever tried Natural Balance products? Or do you use them regularly?

Disclaimer: We received a Natural Balance holiday pack in exchange for our honest review.

Review: Castor & Pollux Organix chicken treats

I have been wanting to try an item from Castor & Pollux’s line of organic products (aka “Organix”) for a while, so we jumped at this review opportunity from Chewy. We got a chance to try the brand’s organic chicken cookies:

Castor & Pollux Organix treats

The cookies are solid, small discs (bigger than a US quarter) that must give off a very alluring aroma, because Pyrrha came running as soon as I unzipped the bag.

Castor & Pollux Organix treats
Close shot of the cookies.

In her eagerness to win one of these cookies, Pyrrha gave her best begging eyes and even knocked the bag off the table with her muzzle.

Castor & Pollux Organix treats
OK. I’ve been patient.
Castor & Pollux Organix treats
Knocking the bag off the table in her enthusiasm.
Castor & Pollux Organix treats
Smells good!

In short, she’s a big fan!

Castor & PolluxIf you’re not familiar with the brand, Castor & Pollux markets themselves as “the leader in organic and natural food for pets.” In the United States, this seems to be true. The company was bought by Merrick in 2012, which seems to have raised its profile in pet supply stores.

This product is USDA Organic-certified and made in the United States, which can almost always put a pet owner a bit more at ease. These treats also tout a very trustworthy ingredients list:

Organic Chicken, Organic Peas, Organic Brown Rice, Organic Oats, Organic Barley, Organic Chicken Fat naturally preserved with mixed Tocopherols(form of Vitamin E) Natural Chicken Liver Flavor, Organic Flaxseed, Rosemary Extract

I think these treats are too hard to use for training purposes (in which tiny, soft bits always seem to work best for us), but we will certainly enjoy them as the high-quality biscuit for when Pyrrha has been an extra good girl (or for when Guion needs to make some bribing magic happen). At Chewy, a 12-oz. bag of these treats sells for $6.09, which I think is a good deal; the bag is generously sized and filled up almost to the top, so it even feels like you’re getting a lot for such a high-quality product.

One other comment about Chewy itself: I am SUPER impressed with their shipping times! I don’t know if we happen to live really close to a distributor, but we seem to always get our Chewy products within a day or two of requesting them. Impressive service, to say the least!

Has your dog ever tried a product from Castor & Pollux? If so, what did you think?

Disclaimer: We were provided with a bag of these treats in exchange for our honest review.

Review: Wellness Well Bites

A fun memory: Wellness Well Bites were the very first treats I bought for Pyrrha!

I was preparing for bringing her home, and I went to our local Tractor Supply to get her kibble, and these treats caught my attention.

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So, I was happy to review this offering from Chewy.com of the Wellness chicken and venison recipe. And Pyrrha definitely was too!

I really like how soft and easily breakable these treats are. They are also strong smelling, which really gets her attention while training.

Wellness Well Bites

The ingredients are also top notch:

Chicken, Venison, Ground Brown Rice, Oatmeal, Vegetable Glycerin, Guar Gum, Cane Molasses, Carrots, Salt, Natural Smoke Flavor, Garlic, Blueberries, Flaxseed, Sweet Potatoes, Apples, Phosphoric Acid (a natural acidifier), Sorbic Acid (a preservative), and Mixed Tocopherols (a natural preservative)

An 8-oz. bag of these treats sells for $8.95 at Chewy.com. Check them out!

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Disclaimer: We were provided with a bag of these treats in exchange for our honest review. We never review products that we wouldn’t personally endorse.

Review: Halo Healthsome Biscuits

Like many of you, we normally have a wide range of dog treats on hand. We have tiny treats for training, chews for boredom, and a miscellaneous assortment of sizes, shapes, and types of treats for spontaneous rewards.

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I think these Halo Healthsome Biscuits will fall into our category of “toss-in-the-crate” treats (e.g., slightly more substantial treats that we give to our fosters when we’re crate training).

We let Draco be the taste tester for these biscuits, and as you can see, he was very interested.

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We got to test the protein and fiber formula. The ingredients are:

Whole Wheat Flour, Beef, Beef Liver, Potato Flour, Pea, Flour, Chicken Liver, Rolled Oats, Chicken Fat (Preservedwith Natural Mixed Tocopherols), Pumpkin, Tomatoes, Apples, Sweet Potatoes, Cranberries, Split Peas, Carrots, Green Beans, Green Bell Pepper, Celery, Parsley, and Ascorbic Acid

which I feel great about!

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These biscuits normally sell for $7.49 for an 8-oz. bag, but they are currently on sale for $4.99 a bag at Chewy.com.

The biscuits crumble easily, like a granola bar, which makes them more difficult for training use, but very nice for the occasional treat and for teaching new pups that great things come when they settle into the crate.

Have you ever tried Halo products? Are there particular varieties that you like or would recommend?

Disclaimer: We were provided with a bag of these biscuits from Chewy.com in exchange for our honest review, but all opinions are expressly mine.

Review: Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost Minis

As you know, Pyrrha is always eager to try new treats, and we were particularly interested in this offering from Chewy.com to try Nature’s Variety’s product, Instinct Raw Boost Minis (chicken formula).

photo_2A 3.25-oz. bag sells for $10. These are freeze-dried treats, and I liked the small size, which makes them easy to dole out as training rewards. They are also easy to break up, if you wanted even smaller treats, and this of course also means that they’re quick for Pyrrha to scarf down and move on to the next task at hand.

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These treats are advertised as “raw,” which here means that they contain natural ingredients without chemical fillers or artificial preservatives. The treats are also grain-free and gluten-free and do not contain corn, wheat, or soy.

Here are the listed ingredients for these minis:

Chicken (Including Ground Chicken Bone), Turkey, Turkey Liver, Turkey Heart, Pumpkinseeds, Apples, Carrots, Butternut Squash, Ground Flaxseed, Montmorillonite Clay, Broccoli, Lettuce, Spinach, Dried Kelp, Apple Cider Vinegar, Parsley, Honey, Salmon Oil, Mixed Tocopherols, Olive Oil, Rosemary Extract, Blueberries, Alfalfa Sprouts, Persimmons, Inulin, Rosemary, Sage, Clove

We feel good about this list! As we’ve said before, it’s hard to find dog treats that aren’t jam-packed with shady stuff.

photoPyrrha, as you can see, was VERY eager to try these little treats out! She threw out every trick in the book to get one!

Guion thinks that her enthusiasm for the treats has waned over time, but I say it’s hard to tell. If that’s true, it’s probably because she loathes fruits and vegetables and anything remotely healthy. Ha!

You can buy these treats from Chewy.com (although they’re temporarily out of stock right now) and other pet retailers.

Disclaimer: We were provided with a bag of these treats in exchange for our honest review, but all opinions are expressly our own.

Review: Natural Balance Jerky Bark

Before Rainer left to go on trial with his new family, I gave him the opportunity to try a new product: Natural Balance’s Jerky Bark, advertised as a “limited ingredient treat.” We were asked to review this product by Chewy.com, and the dogs are, of course, always willing test subjects.

Natural Balance Jerky Bark

Point 1: Chewy offers really fast shipping! I was actually surprised by this. I think two days after I got the e-mail about these treats, they arrived on our doorstep. We were impressed by the speedy service.

Point 2: We got to try the lamb and brown rice treats, which are on sale right now for $7.99 for a 6-ounce bag. The ingredients are:

Lamb, Lamb Liver, Brown Rice, Cane Molasses, Natural Flavor, Salt, Mixed Tocopherols (preservative), Natural Hickory Smoke Flavor, Rosemary Extract, Zinc Propionate

Not as limited a list as the Orijen treats we previously reviewed, but still, quite good compared with the average dog treat on the market today. I am a little curious what “natural flavor” is. And I was interested to read that zinc propionate is actually recommended, according to this research paper, as an additive for dogs and cats. Mixed tocopherols are a vitamin E derivative used for preservation. So, in general, I’m not concerned about the ingredients list for this product.

Natural Balance Jerky BarkPoint 3: The treats come in a variety of broken-up pieces. They almost feel freeze-dried, and they are a little hard to break up with your fingers, but the dogs, of course, didn’t mind that at all!

Natural Balance Jerky Bark

Rainer, as you can see, was VERY interested in this jerky bark. We also took a few pieces with us to share with his adopter, so he could have something tasty to immediately win Rainer over.

Overall: Recommended! Seems like a great product. I do wish it was a little easier to break it up into smaller bits for training purposes, but that’s probably not the intended use for this treat. Check out Chewy.com for these treats and many more.

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Disclaimer: I was provided with these treats in exchange for this review, but all opinions are expressly mine.

Review: Orijen Black Angus Beef treats

When Chewy.com asked if we’d like to review treats from Orijen, we were more than happy to! I’ve heard great things about Orijen’s products for a while now, but I’ve frankly been too cheap to spring for them myself. We learned, though, that with Orijen, you get what you pay for, which is a very high-quality product.

Orijen Black Angus treats

When I ripped open the package, Pyrrha and Rainer went WILD.

Pyrrha and Rainer investigate treats

This photo is blurry, but this is what Pyrrha did immediately after the bag was opened:

(c) Doggerel

She has never done this before! She knows that paws are NOT allowed on the table. But the overpowering aroma of these Orijen treats was simply too much for her to handle.

(c) Doggerel

The Black Angus Beef treats are small, freeze-dried bits, and the ingredients are top-notch: Angus beef liver, boneless Black Angus beef, and Black Angus tripe. That’s IT. The meat is also preservative free and originates in Alberta. This is really impressive in the world of dog treats, which are often loaded up with starches, grains, and unpronounceable chemical mixtures. Not so with these treats.

Orijen Black Angus beef treats

Orijen is also manufactured in Canada, which is comforting, coming out of all of the horrific news of tainted dog products manufactured in China.

Overall? Pyrrha and I give these treats 5 stars.

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You can buy a 2-oz. or 3.5-oz. bag of these treats from Chewy.com.

Have you tried any Orijen products before? Did your dogs love them as much as mine did?

Disclaimer: I was provided with a bag of treats in exchange for this review, but all opinions are expressly mine.

Treats from Celebrity Catwalk

Jennifer at Celebrity Catwalk was kind enough to send Pyrrha a generous box of treats from My Little Wolf.

My Little Wolf treats from Celebrity Catwalk

Pyrrha is a big fan of these soft pork liver and salmon treats. I like how small they are and how easy they are to dispense. Pyrrha throws out plenty of her “sit pretties” whenever she hears one of the bags open!

Celebrity Catwalk is a fashion event that raises funds and awareness in support of National Animal Rescue. Check out their site here and follow them on Twitter at @CelebCatwalk.