We would like to tell you about our most favorite treats. I will start out by saying that I bought these products myself (and have been regularly buying them for years) and the manufacturer doesn’t have any idea I am doing this review. Now that we have that out of the way you can really take to heart what I have to say about them.
Our favorite treats are made by Zuke’s Performance Pet Nutrition out of Durango, Co. We are sold on Power Bones, Hip Action and Mini Naturals. These soft, chewy treats are wheat, corn and soy free. They are based on the concept of energy bars for people but for dogs. Hip Action and Power Bones (and Jerky Naturals which we also love but aren’t reviewed here) are the same size – about 1 inch by 1 inch – but the Mini Naturals are smaller.
Power Bones, their “energy treats for active dogs”, were the first Zuke’s treats we tried. They are made with a variety of carbohydrates and high-quality protein to give you dog the boost of energy he needs out on the trail and come in Peanut Butter, Chicken and Beef flavors. I love the idea of having “power bars” for the dogs to eat on the trail while I am munching my favorite energy bar or gel.
Besides extra energy, active dogs also need a hip and joint formula to keep them spry and active. I primarily feed Chester and Gretel Zuke’s Hip Action. These treats are basically the Power Bones but contain 300 mg of Glucosamine and 50 mg of Chondroitin (they also have Omega oils but the package doesn’t say how much). I looked at the mg of these ingredients in my own joint formula and these concentrations seem more than sufficient for a 15 to 30 lb dog. In fact the instruction say to feed 1 treat to any dog 46 lbs or under. Since Chester and Gretel are less than half that weight I think that even ½ treat per day would be sufficient. But, because I think more is better, these treats aren’t really expensive as far as quality dog treats go and they love them so much, I give them one whole treat a day. Hip Action comes in Beef, Chicken and Peanut Butter flavors.
Mini Naturals are basically mini versions of the Power Bones. Each treat is about the size of a pea and contains only 3 calories so they are great for training. Honestly, you can easily break up any of the larger soft treats into small pieces like this for training but the mini treats eliminate the possibility of getting treat under your fingernails or crumbs on your clothes while doing so. Mini Naturals come in Chicken and Salmon flavors but mysteriously but both flavors seem to stink like Salmon.
When you read the back of the package, all of these treats have about the same mix of protein, fat and fiber (and I assume carbohydrates). Chester and Gretel like all flavors of these treats seemingly the same. Get Hip Action if you need the extra joint supplements and the Mini Naturals if you will primarily be using these treats for training. Or, if you are like us, by all three 🙂
By far, Zuke’s soft treats are Chester and Gretel’s favorites. They love the flavor and are fanatic about them when I have one in my hand. The only other thing that comes close is dried liver, etc. but I don’t even feel like those compare to Zuke’s treats.
Personally, I really like these treats too. I admit, I am kind of a gear head which includes liking all kinds of power gels and bars designed for quick snacking and performance while being active. I like the idea of the same thing for my dogs. I also love Colorado and really like that these treats for active dogs are made there. A bonus to buying these treats is that Zuke’s donates a portion of its profits to the dog and cat cancer fund. However, I wouldn’t keep buying them if the dogs didn’t love them so much. I can’t recommend these Zuke’s products enough!
If you are interested, Zuke’s also makes Z-filets, Mini Bakes, Superfood Organic Dog Biscuits, and Z-Bones Natural, Edible Dental Chews. I have only tried the Z-fillets in sample size but didn’t feel they elicited the same greedy response in the dogs. The Mini Bakes and Organic Dog Biscuits are dry treats so I am assuming that they would be just like any other dry dog treat as far as the dogs are concerned. I would be willing to try them because I love their products so much but when it comes to spending my own money I think I will stick to what I know works.
If you would like to try these treats, go to their website and you can print a coupon for $1 off on package of treats. Come back and let us know what you think.