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Discussion Starter #1
I've tried various THK food products now, and they smell good and certainly seem to be of a high quality. But I have 2 queries:

1) I don't think there is enough meat content. The food is always greenish, and I barely see any meat bits in it. What's the meat ratio in any of the normal formulas (non pure veggie one).

2) My dog's poop always look ginormous when on THK compared to when he's on other foods. I am currently transitioned to raw+kibbles, but when I was THK I had to do raw+THK because the meat content just didn't seem sufficient.
 

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I agree. I had a friends dog living with me for about 3 weeks while he was on vacation and his dog was on THK. I was shocked at the ginormous poops he left behind. The entire meal pretty much went right through him, whereas my raw fed dogs' poops are tiny.

Like you said, it seems to be high quality, but I don't see how this food can be so healthy if it just goes right through the dog?
 

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Look at the crude protein content - it varies, but no different than dry food.
We have two flavors at home. Grain free Fish and Coconut is 34% protein and Revel which is chicken w/grains is 24.5%.
I have had no issues with extra large BMs, in fact once we started THK, BMs became somewhat smaller and definitely firmer. I can clean up my 88lb dog's poop one handed and not leave a stain on the grass (I know that's a bit graphic) but when we are with other groups of dogs, I have no embarrassment when Molly needs to go.
My thoughts are that you are feeding too much? Our dog is average exercise, we feed 3/4c. to 1 c. (depending on the activity of the day) per meal with a tiny topper. We give small treats during the day and before bed so we consider that food intake too.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
When I was on THK I definitely did the recommended amounts diligently. I won't be doing the normal THK foods again I think for the reasons stated.

However, today at the store I saw a new THK product; dehydrated kibble like bits. The ingredient list sounded great as expected. May try the chicken one soon. The meat content in these seem reasonable.
 

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The Honest Kitchen

Thank you so much for your questions about The Honest Kitchen!

1)
Many of our foods are green because they contain whole food ingredients like spinach, chard, kelp, parsley. Our animal proteins are dehydrated then milled into a powder, to ensure even distribution. If you write in to us at [email protected] and tell us which recipes you feed, we can tell you the percent of protein as well as the percent of meat in in the composition of the recipe. An example of a lower protein recipe is Keen. Keen offers 21% protien and turkey makes up 23% of the ingredients. Embark is 29% protein and turkey makes up 40% of the ingredients.

2)
When dogs eat a high moisture, whole food diet such as ours, the stool will not look the same as it did when consuming a dry kibble or raw food. The stool will reflect the colorful ingredients going in, different than what we are used to. Since the food is high moisture and high fiber it is also common for the stool to be more voluminous. Our office dogs go 3-4 times a day.

It is not abnormal to see pieces of carrots, spinach, etc present in the stool. The nutrients, phyto-nutrients and antioxidants from the foods are still being absorbed.

There have been studies done to analyze the general digestibility of food for humans; raw, cooked and dehydrated. Raw was approximately 90% digestible, dehydrated food was over 80% digestible, and cooked food was 60%.

Clinical trials on the input/output of a dog or cat eating dehydrated food has not been done, or published in a Scientific journal. The actual digestibility may differ between humans/dogs/cats, but the general principle applies. Less heat=less denaturing=more recognizable by the body=more digestible

We recommend adding meat for high metabolism dogs that fall outside of the bell curve of our feeding guidelines. We'd be happy to talk to you more about this if you'd like. Give us a buzz at 866.437.9729

I hope this helps and please let us know if we can be of further assistance. We are always happy to help!
-Michelle
 

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You are referring to our new product Proper Toppers, which come in chicken and turkey proteins.

Proper Toppers

They are crunchy, like kibble but not highly processed. I have used them for my dog and he is a huge fan! I hope your dog loves it!
 

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One thing to keep in mind about the famously "ginormous" THK poops: for dogs with anal gland problems, it's quite possibly EXACTLY what they need. Tiny poop sometimes doesn't facilitate the emptying of the anal glands in these problem-prone dogs, but the great big poop does.

For people who think going to the vet to get the anal glands expressed is normal, I can only say that it's not. It's a sign of a problem, and that problem might be food related. Not all dogs have this problem, but for those who do, it can be painful and unpleasant. I cheer every time I see those big piles come out of my problem-prone dog, as he hasn't had any problems since the switch.

If you are worried about not enough meat in the formula, then maybe consider trying out the Preference base mix. It has NO meat -- you add it! That means you choose the kind of protein, and how much of it to feed. They give guidelines on the box, but you can feed more if your dog has a fast metabolism. It's a nice way to balance out a raw diet for those of us who don't have time to manage nutrient spreadsheets and worry about screwing it up.
 

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My dog's have always been very firm on THK's Preference -- hard enough that they hold their shape when picked up with a poop bag on a walk.

We're taking a break from THK's base-mix right now and trying out Dr. Harvey's Grain Free Veg-to-Bowl premix. It's a new product to me, so I'm adding it to my list of resources. We just started the trial, so the jury's still out on it. The reason we're taking a break is just for some nutritional variety, and he'd seemed bored with the Preference lately, not eating all of it. The one thing I'm not thrilled about with Dr. Harvey's mix is the inclusion of flax meal in it, as ground flax tends to go rancid very quickly (= store in the fridge after opening!). Other than that, it seems like a very solid option among the premixes. I'm hoping that with a variety of good pre-mix options to rotate through, the dog will stay a little more interested, as he's a hard one to keep weight on.
 

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Thanks Magwart. As soon as I finish feeding out this last bag of Fromm we are ready to try something new. I have had chronic soft stool issues with the boy. Plus you know about his anal gland issue so I was considering trying THK next. I feel like it wont help the glands unless it is a nice firm poop for obvious reasons.

I got the Glandex today. He hates the chewables lol. I had to do in real peanut butter to get him to eat it.
 

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I bought the Glandex powder. Varik didn't even know it was in his food (I always add plenty of water to his food, making it soupy). I've also been adding psyllium husk powder to his food. He's been on antibiotics for going on 8 weeks now for a severely infected anal gland. On his third type of antibiotic...ugh.

Bad thing is the antibiotics aren't really helping him have firm .... outcomes. Frustrating.
 

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Yes, now that I know he doesn't like the chewables I will try powder. But he is going to have to eat these first, one way or the other :)
 

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Varik decided he didn't care for his chewable heartworm preventative, so I break it up and put it in with his food. If you add things to his food routinely, then maybe he won't notice ;).
 

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I just want to update this: after 2 weeks on Dr. Harvey's Veg-to-Bowl, we're going back to THK's Preference. The dog liked the Dr. Harvey's (= very good palatability), but his poop was consistently too loose. That may be my dog -- who has the most delicate GI tract of any dog I've ever owned, and I've owned many GSDs.

When we went back to THK's Preference this week, I ended up with a box containing good-sized pieces of dehydrated food (not a box of fine powder), and he seems to like that much better than the powdery boxes. It's the luck of the draw as to whether any given box of THK will contain finely milled powder or chunks of dehydrated food, unfortunately. He stopped eating THK a few weeks ago when we had a box that was mostly powder.

THK seems to have inconsistency issues in their milling of the dehydrated food in the Preference line, and my dog notices! It would be helpful if THK would market it the way Dr. Harvey's Veg-to-Bowl is marketed: you can either by the finely milled powder version, or the chunky version, and they label them clearly.
@thehonestkitchen, please pass this on to your quality control people!
 

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I just want to update this: after 2 weeks on Dr. Harvey's Veg-to-Bowl, we're going back to THK's Preference. The dog liked the Dr. Harvey's (= very good palatability), but his poop was consistently too loose. That may be my dog -- who has the most delicate GI tract of any dog I've ever owned, and I've owned many GSDs.

When we went back to THK's Preference this week, I ended up with a box containing good-sized pieces of dehydrated food (not a box of fine powder), and he seems to like that much better than the powdery boxes. It's the luck of the draw as to whether any given box of THK will contain finely milled powder or chunks of dehydrated food, unfortunately. He stopped eating THK a few weeks ago when we had a box that was mostly powder.

THK seems to have inconsistency issues in their milling of the dehydrated food in the Preference line, and my dog notices! It would be helpful if THK would market it the way Dr. Harvey's Veg-to-Bowl is marketed: you can either by the finely milled powder version, or the chunky version, and they label them clearly.
@thehonestkitchen, please pass this on to your quality control people!
Thank you for your question regarding the consistency of our base mix Preference. We have not changed the formula. Preference, unlike other diets, has no meat, which can act like a binding agent to help hold everything together. Since Preference consists of only dry veggies there is nothing to hold it together, so too much mixing, handling of bulk sacks during packaging and even just transit in and out of the warehouse to customers can cause separation. We have looked at possibly adding some oil to help bind things together but decided not to make that change because it can cause some other processing issues. There are several items in the recipe that are powders, kelp, green pea flour, honey and vitamins, these will tend to separate to the bottom of the bag leaving more solid veggies at the top.

Our AAFCO profiles are built off of actual product from the line, and we do random testing of product in the market place to see that the product is meeting the AAFCO profiles listed.So, we can guarantee that every box is nutritionally complete, but contents may settle and it is a good idea to give the bag a good shake to get the finer particles mixed in with the chunkier ones

We do appreciate and welcome your feedback! We are always working on improving our products and are actively working to fix the consistency issues you are experiencing with Preference. We'd be happy to further discuss if you'd like! Don't hesitate to contact us at 866.437.9729.

-Brandy
 
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