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I currently use The Farmer’s Dog, and my dogs love it. That being said, they are beagles and love almost everything… BUT, I am impressed with the ingredients, company, delivery, customer service, etc! I do wish their recipes had more organ meats.
I have no experience with Ollie’s, but their recipes also look good. However, they include white potato which is something I try to avoid, since they are controversial in terms of whether they contribute to inflammation/allergies (and one of my dogs has bad seasonal allergies).
Hi Brittany Mom – I, like you, am very picky about what I feed my dogs. I never got a straight answer from him as to where the meat comes from or even who processes it (“local NJ butcher” is not an acceptable answer). Not recommended…
Mom2Cavs – I completely understand. For 6 years I fed what the vet told me to feed and I vaccinated with what they told me to vaccinate. In addition – my vet likes to make up some story about how they like to give the 3-year rabies booster every 2 years “just to be safe.” Um, what?! After spending enough time here on DFA and other natural dog care sites I am so done with that crap – and now I feel like I spend more time educating the docs when I go in then they spend educating me… but I’m paying them. Go figure. The latest stunt they pulled was with my older boy that I knew had had a vaccine reaction in the past but didn’t know to which one (because his previous owners were… not good). They took him back to draw blood and when he was brought back I was told “oh the doctor said to go ahead and give him an injection of Benedryl to get him started before the vaccines”. At the time I was annoyed but it didn’t really sink in til i saw my invoice — that injection cost $26! almost double the cost of the rabies vaccine itself! And they never even consulted me! I went home furious, called the office and was put on the phone with the smooth-talking doc who insisted that it was “in his best interest” and “that’s what we do with all dogs who have had a reaction”. I said – not with my dog! You do not inject him with *anything* without consulting me first and certainly not something for $26! They make out great! — now, even though they don’t know which vaccine caused his reaction, every TWO years (“to be safe”) they want me to pay ~15 for the vaccine PLUS $26 for Benedryl. Needless to say, even though I had to push through to the office manager to get it, they did issue me a credit and noted my wishes in my dogs’ files. Sorry for the rant and thank you for reading 🙂 It’s just live and learn I guess… I regret the 6 years I spent not knowing any better, like you, but now we DO know and we aren’t getting pushed around any longer. I’m glad you were able to switch to a vet you can trust — I’m having a lot of trouble finding a holistic vet around me.
Marie – I know, I used to be one of those people (see above!). That’s interesting that your one dog made it to 10 with nothing. The rabies is unfortunate though 🙁
lol Betsy – ouch. I don’t know how details of this process is for vet offices but through Dr. Becker I found the site for the lab/bloodbank created by Dr. Jean Dodds in CA (Hemopet). They’ve priced this test at $50 – obviously this doesn’t include the cost of getting the sample there, but seems like that would still come in far below what most of us have paid. I mentioned it to my vet but I’m not too hopeful anything will come of it.
Marie – amen to what you said. They’re my dogs, it’s MY decision. Sometimes I feel like the balance between “optimal pet health” and “making money” is actually tipped quite a bit toward “making money” … and I hate that feeling.
Looks like I’m in the middle… they charged me $112. Thanks for responding! I forgot to ask also, how often do they encourage you to have it done? My vet told me it should be done yearly. Seems excessive to me.
I’m not a big fan of Sojos because it’s too chunky (and you find pieces of veggies after it comes back out, like you said)… I’ve used THK Preference and also Grandma Lucy’s Pureformance (no potato) with great success.
Hmm… they also go up into CT. No idea how easy it is to get from Long Island to CT but figured it’s worth mentioning 🙂
Hi neezerfan, not sure where you are but they also make stops in SE PA, DE, and MD if any of those work better for you.
Freehold! 🙂 Here are the stops listed in the last email I got (all going southbound):
Thomas Edison Rest Area, truck side
Molly Pitcher (??)
Richard Stockton rest stop (other side of WW rest stop), truck side
Exit 4 – Parking lot of NJ Ale House
Exit 2 – Dunkin Donuts/Gas station
Hope that helps. I picked up my first order last night and I’m super impressed so far, can’t wait to try what we got. Incidentally they had a 30 lb case of duck necks on sale which I ordered, thinking it would be nicely packaged like the other small packs of necks I’ve gotten from Hare. Well it was actually 30 lbs of loose necks frozen into a giant 30 lb block. LOL. My husband and I just spent about an hour and a half tearing them apart and repacking them into freezer bags. There must be close to 150 or more. I think I’m set for awhile 😛
Hey Freehold, do you know that these guys deliver to various points along the NJ turnpike?
Not sure if that’s a driveable distance for you? Their menu is more extensive than Raaw Energy and the prices are equally good if not better.
It’s super aggravating. I exchanged numerous emails with this person over product questions and she responded to each one promptly, lying the ENTIRE TIME. I emailed her this week after this whole thing went down and never received a response. What a surprise. If you google “Pet dynamix” and “river dog naturals” you’ll see responses from other customers who got burned after using her other “businesses”. Why she’s still getting away with this I do not understand.
also wanted to add… it’s annoying because I only found out about the stupid site because that woman emailed our co-op (PA_NJrawfeedingnetwork)… so i can’t imagine how many other people are in the same boat. Not sure if you’re a member of the group or not but no one’s responded with any sort of feedback, so who knows.
Hi Freehold… that website is definitely a bust. HDM posted that she placed an order and never received it, had to find their phone number through Paypal (since the one listed on the website is out of service), and got a similar BS line from them about how it would ship soon or some such thing. We dug deeper and found that this same creep of a woman (Suzanne) burned HDM once before with a different website but somehow she’s still putting up these sites and screwing people. Her former 2-3 businesses all have an F rating on the website of the Better Business Bureau. You can read our discussion here…
https://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/best-dog-foods/raw-dog-food/ (suggested raw dog foods)
I wouldn’t wait to file the claim with Paypal – do it asap. They took care of HDM’s refund the same day.
Patty, I like how you think!… I told him the “when h**l freezes over” line and he didn’t like that much, haha. He only has himself to blame though, he went with me to purchase the freezer! Did he think it would stay only half full? Admittedly I do need to reserve a little space for the deer he’d better be bringing me once hunting season starts. I like to tease him that it’s all for the dogs… (most of it is, I just let him think it isn’t).
Freehold – no luck with Raaw Energy and the tripe patties? Good luck getting your freezer, it makes raw-feeding life much easier! My fridge freezer breathed a sigh of relief when every last inch wasn’t busting with meat anymore. And now i have room for a few human items again, hehe.
I was just looking at that turkey sale and totally want to get some! I told my husband about it and he goes “when are we going to stop buying meat for the dogs?” I said… um how ’bout when the freezer’s full? lol. I still have plenty of space so what’s the problem! 🙂
Thank you for the suggestion, I will definitely check it out.
24 hours of the vinegar/water rinse has not shown a noticeable difference really 🙁 While yesterday was strangely good for her and we weren’t awake at 3:30 this morning, today was back to “pretty bad” and I just don’t understand…
Marmarx, do you mind sharing what you got? I tried a case of the lamb/chicken/turkey medley in my first order and while the dogs enjoyed it just fine, it was just a little “mushier” than I was expecting (and it sortof came out the other end that way too). I’m comparing it to what I’m used to with Darwin’s/Hare for example. I’m going to try some of their beef grinds for my next order… I’m not giving up because like you said, the prices are just too good to pass up and I really want to find something from him that works well for us.
I’m in PA and feel like we’ve been getting robbed of a “real” winter lately… maybe this will be my year 🙂 10 feet of snow anyone? Just kidding.
Betsy I like the bee pollen idea. While I was reading up on allergies this morning at 3:30 am (while giving her a belly rub… which she will gladly stop chewing for) I read a post by another dog mom who said giving stinging nettle cleared her dog’s allergies right up. I’m not expecting miracles but even a LITTLE help would be great right now.
Although just to be extra confusing, she actually had an abnormally good day today… no chewing between like 6 am and 5:30 pm. I didn’t even give her any allergy meds. But tonight she’s been going for them again. What the heck!
Thank you for the suggestion Patty, I will try nearly anything at this point. We will give the vinegar solution a go and see what happens. Between the mosquitoes attacking me and the dogs and the freakin’ pollen, etc. I cannot wait for cold weather!! (though I may be the only one, lol)
Possibly silly question here… why might one prefer “coarse ground” over “fine ground”? Just wondering…
HDM – I definitely agree, veggies are important for them to have. There are some that condemn anyone who puts a fruit or vegetable near a dogs mouth and I think it’s so stupid. Even if they don’t NEED them there’s still plenty of nutrition to be derived from them (properly prepared like you said) so why not?? Some people are silly… but to each his own I guess.
Betsy – I’m with you, I’d feed Darwin’s full-time if I could, I feel good about their product and it’s so convenient… only two things have driven me to look elsewhere for raw, those being the cost and the lack of variety 🙁 Shipping kills me with it coming all the way to PA…
Sandy – my dogs both threw up little pieces of bone the first time they had RMBs (duck necks). I think the other Sandy suggested the bone content of necks is pretty high compared to the meat, so feeding them with something else in the stomach could help. You said you’ve fed them before, so maybe this isn’t the issue… but I always just give my dogs a little something else (little THK, other meat, whatever) with the RMB to help “buffer” it. That being said, the pieces they threw up the first time were pretty small so I wouldn’t think they would’ve hurt anything.
Hi again FreeholdHound!
Like you I’m not super impressed with his menu but feel the prices can’t be beat (plus no shipping). I started off with a box of the Chick/Turk/Lamb Medley since my dogs don’t have a lot of lamb in their diet but wish I hadn’t… I just wish he wouldn’t combine so many proteins in those medleys. I mean BeeTurDuckenLamb? A little overboard. But anyway, the veggies are ONLY collard greens… which is minimal compared to most other premade raws. Plus he does have whole ground chicken and whole ground duck by itself (no veggies). I don’t know. I’m going to try him again next month one more time (with some “simpler” items… no blends) just because like you, it would nice to have a local supplementary source for raw (no shipping cost is a huge plus). At this point I’m still thinking Darwin’s and Hare are going to remain my primary raw sources though.
Freehold – I often browse Hare Today’s website every other day… frequently every day. lol. I just got an order yesterday but am already planning the next. I love looking too!
Betsy – excellent question, and I can’t wait to read the responses. Sorry I’m no help, but I’m in a similar boat as you where I think one of my dogs needs to go on full raw pretty soon due to allergy issues. It’s interesting Tracy said grinds aren’t necessary all the time because isn’t that what Darwin’s basically is? Unless Tracy’s have more bone than Darwin’s… not sure, but glad you asked this nonetheless.
I know what you mean.. I’m currently waiting on a new freezer (on order) because since starting raw, our fridge freezer has been maxed out for weeks now with little to no room for people food, lol. I’m not so sure it’s going to get here before my Hare order on Wednesday though, eek. Fingers crossed for a miracle 🙂
SandyandMila/HDM… haha I just had to comment on this (though I know it was awhile ago). HDM you must never have joined the “rawfeeding” yahoo group! They are “interesting” to say the least… I definitely come here first but here’s the lessons this list wants you to believe: dogs need zero supplements, ever; all dogs need to eat is meat meat meat (and a little bone and a little organs); bones don’t clean teeth, tearing at meat chunks does; necks of any sort have no place in the diet unless attached to the animal; ground meat is evil; veggies and fruits are evil; tripe is useless. LOL. I will join the “thank goodness i found this site” crowd and also to tie in to the topic of this thread, I am expecting my first Hare Today order on Wednesday and can’t wait!!! (And it includes duck necks!!!) 🙂
Ooh you’re fortunate to have them so close 🙂 I drive ~35 mins to Bensalem to pick up. I did get my first “haul” today and it looks good! I have a 2 lb chub of their turkey/chicken/lamb medley thawing in the fridge so that’ll probably take at least 2 days… I only wish his menu was a little more diverse, but I know it’s a smallish business. Their products are definitely priced very competitively though so I’m hoping this works out to be a long-term source of good meat for us. They do seem to supply a wide range of co-ops (all the way down to Virginia) so I interpret that to mean people are pleased 🙂
Thanks pugsmomsandy, that makes sense. They do have raw so I’m pretty sure that wasn’t the issue, just the increased amount of bone like you said. I will look into getting chicken legs/wings.
🙂 Thanks Cyndi & NectarMom… yea, mine have been having ground raw (Darwin’s, Primal, etc.) for about 2 months now and haven’t had any trouble with it. I know there’s ground bone in that but thought maybe the RMBs might have sat differently since the dogs probably swallowed bigger pieces of bone than they’d ever had before (but still small obviously, since they chewed them up). I was surprised it took over 12 hours to resurface such as it did. I’m keeping an eye on them but otherwise they’re great… I just hope it doesn’t mean that having a duck neck or whatever causes them to throw up each time. They clearly digested the meat well, just not all of the bone.
Hmm a quick follow up on which I would appreciate any feedback… no one had a problem post-RMB until this morning when both threw up some small pieces of bone mixed with yellow bile. Both had normal poop (small, firm, etc) and both had an appetite for breakfast, and both are acting normally. Is this a normal reaction to the first time that much bone enters their systems… did they not chew enough… do I do feed RMBs again? Thanks HDM/everyone.
Just wanted to share with the people I know will understand that my dogs just had their first raw meaty bones for dinner tonight! Each had a duck neck that my husband and I held the whole time, since I didn’t want any gulping. Once they both stopped playing tug of war with us, they got the idea and got down to chewing. I must admit that every single one of the questions that Hound Dog Mom posted in the original post on this thread went through my mind, haha… was that piece too big? Are they chewing enough? Etc. Aside from my tendency to worry too much, it was definitely satisfying to watch them be “true carnivores”, crunching and grinding away. They’re both happily sleeping/digesting now… I’m very hopeful it agrees with them so I can continue to increase the variety of RMBs in their diet!
I found these websites provide a decent explanation of the warm/cool/hot meats, etc… not sure how much I believe all this but I first started looking into it after noticing that Primal actually puts a symbol on the back of their bags to note what’s hot, warm, cool, or neutral. http://www.acreaturecomfort.com/yinyanbalance.htm and http://www.scottsdaleacupuncture.com/food.htm. Turkey seems to hop between “warming” or “neutral” depending on where you look… duck and rabbit seem to be most consistently listed as “cooling”. Venison and lamb are most often the hottest.
Thanks for the reply HDM. I’m still a bit new in the world of NON-grocery store dog food and there’s so much to learn! I’ve gotten so much from you and your experiences through your posts on this site so just wanted to say that my dogs and I appreciate it!
Would someone please explain to me the difference between frozen raw and freeze-dried raw? I understand the difference in actual preparation — but is one of these better nutritionally? Safer? Is it only a matter of storage (freeze-dried doesn’t need to be in the freezer)? Thank you!!