When we adopted our Siberian husky Aura we knew it would be a huge yet rewarding responsibility. We want to be able to take her with us wherever we go and to do that she needs the proper training. We are training her through the positive reinforcement of good behavior. To do this we use treats as high value rewards when teaching her new tricks.
In our article on the best healthy dog treats you can buy in stores Zuke’s Mini Naturals is one of our top recommendations. In this Zuke’s Mini Naturals Review we’ll discuss the history of the company, the products, what ingredients are used in those products, how Aura feels about them, and finally we’ll talk about some potential controversy regarding the company.
About the Company
According to their website, Zuke’s was started in 1995 after the owner of the company had an epiphany about his dog. While on a hike he fed his pup a piece of an energy bar and gave the dog enough energy to finish the trip. That’s when he realized that dogs need healthy treats for energy just like humans do.
So, he started the company in Durango, Colorado and named it after his dog, Zuke. To this day the company is based in Durango and is known for contributing profits to cancer research in cats and dogs.
Zuke’s Mini Naturals Products
Zuke’s Mini Naturals are small cylindrical treats that are intended to be used as high value rewards when training pets. They come in various sizes and six enticing flavors; Roasted Pork, Roasted Chicken, Savory Salmon, Fresh Peanut Butter, Delicious Duck, and Wild Rabbit.
Because the treats are so little even the smallest bags have plenty of treats to get your pup through multiple training sessions without breaking the bank. With each treat being under 3 calories you can feed your pet plenty of them without worrying about spoiling their dinner. Each treat has 30% moisture which gives them a distinctive aroma to attract any pet.
We recommend Zuke’s mini naturals because their recipes use a variety of high quality ingredients. They never use corn, wheat, or soy which can be harmful to your pet. They also avoid using any artificial colors, flavors, preservatives, or by products in their recipes.
(Pork / Peanut Butter / Duck / Rabbit / Chicken / Salmon), Ground Rice, Ground Barley, Malted Barley, Gelatin, Vegetable Glycerin, Tapioca, Cherry, Natural Flavor, Sunflower Oil, Salt, Lecithin, Phosphoric Acid, Rosemary, Tumeric, Sorbic Acid (preservative), Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Vitamin E, Zinc Proteinate, Citric Acid, Mixed tocopherols (preservative).
Notice that the first ingredient of each recipe matches its flavor. The pork flavor’s first ingredient is pork, the peanut butter flavor’s first is peanut butter, and so on. This is fantastic as many other treats on the market use artificial flavoring and byproducts as the main ingredient to achieve their flavors.
The first mini naturals that we bought for Aura was a 6oz bag of rabbit flavor. We purchased them right before going to her first professional training session and she immediately took to them. They were able to keep her attention even in a store full of new sights and smells. Now whenever she hears the rustle of the packaging she comes running!
A Bit of Controversy
Back in 2014 Zuke’s was acquired by pet food giant Nestle Purina, putting many Zuke’s customers on edge. Zuke’s claims that their recipes and practices have not changed in any way following the purchase but many consumers are still not convinced. This is because Nestle Purina has been at the center of many controversies over the years including a lawsuit alleging Purina sold contaminated dog food leading to countless pet deaths.
We understand that many pet lovers are wary of Zuke’s parent company but as of this writing Zuke’s itself hasn’t been involved in any scandals or controversies. As long as they continue to make quality products we will continue purchasing their treats. Unfortunately these days the only way to make absolutely sure you aren’t feeding your pet contaminated treats is to make them at home so you can personally source every ingredient.
Now that you know a little more about the company, what products they offer, the ingredients in those products, that Aura absolutely loves them, and a little about the Nestle Purina controversy, you can make an informed decision on purchasing these treats for your best friend.
We highly recommend buying them. They are made from high quality ingredients right here in the United States and are bound to make any husky happy to work for them.