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I Finally Found Local, Organic Dog and Cat Food!

Ellis and Raisin

 

I know it’s not a huge thing, but sometimes the little things make all the difference, don’t they?


I’ve been searching for a good solution to pet food for years. After the crazy pet food recalls in 2007, we switched to California Natural – it was a local company (when we lived in California) that boasted whole grains and “all natural” (though not organic) ingredients. Since we moved to Seattle, I’ve been eyeing other options….


I’ve thought about the raw diet (also lovingly named the BARF Diet – yes, a terrible marketing strategy). It would be the ultimate in sustainability if I could find local, organic, ethically-raised meat. But truly, it is too expensive for our budget and I’m not sure as a vegetarian I could handle the raw meat factor.


I’ve really wanted to find an organic option, too, because our animals are a part of our family and I really want to feed them quality food. And also because it seems inconsistent with my values to support organic agriculture when it comes to buying my own food, but somehow make an exception for my pet’s food. Unsustainable agriculture is unsustainable agriculture, whether it grows dog food or human food, right?


So, finally, the search is over. Wahoo!


Organix Organic Cat Food Organix Organic Dog Food


Organix dog and cat food is made with organic, free-range chicken. It comes from Castor and Pollux (named after their 2 pets) in Clackamas, Oregon, which is 189 miles from us (I think that’s probably the closest we’ll ever get). It costs more than our previous brand, but it is packed with protein so the servings are smaller (which means it lasts longer), and darn it – it matters enough to me that I’ll pay more. We don’t have a lot of money, so we are reducing our costs in other areas to compensate. Because it does matter: to our pets, to our farms, to our farmers, to our soil, and to the animals on the farms who are raised humanely because of our support.


And Castor and Pollux gives back to the community in several ways, so it matters to our neighborhoods, too!

 

Raisin With Toy Mouse


We’ve been feeding Raisin and Ellis with Organix for about three weeks now. They both LOVE the food. We’ve also noticed their fur looks healthier and they have a little more energy. It’s an amazing change really. A very worthwhile change. I’m pleased to have found this!


What do you feed your animals? Have you thought about local or organic foods? Has anyone tried the raw diet?


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15 comments to I Finally Found Local, Organic Dog and Cat Food!

  • Oh well done!! Cat food is something I struggle with – my cat is *very* fussy and won’t even eat anything Australian, let alone local. Sigh. Our dogs I feed a mix I cook up myself from vegetables, barley, pasta and kangaroo mince (which is not “local” but is cheaper than organic meat and got to live out it’s life doing what ‘roos do). A girlfriend of mine is a vet and it’s what she feeds her dogs – I figured if the raw diet was better that’s what she’d be doing so I haven’t bothered trying it.

    Cheers, Julie

  • Rob

    My cat prefers Kitty Junk Food (9 Lives) as long as it is anything fish, and I cannot eat any pizza or spaghetti – anything tomato based were he doesn’t come meowing for a bite.

    My dogs (Before Romeo) Liked it when I bought food from the natural pet pantry in Burien-It actually smelled good. about as natural as I ever got.Romeo will eat anything-food realated so I got to watch him. And were I leave my raisenettes! He will go for those! Even after I scold him anf tell him that Raisans and chocolate are bad for puppies! Otherwise it is Wellnes for dogs and Iams for cats for them both

  • Following the first 2007 pet food recall my life partner and I launched PETitionz.org for angry and alarmed pet owners. Hearing from people from around the globe convinced me to start cooking for my pets. Even though my efforts were at an amateur level I saw amazing results in my 2 elderly cats within weeks.
    This had two results- an ongoing sense of guilt about what I have fed to pets over the years and a partnership with a friend who is a food professional to make pet meals.
    Trust Pet Cuisine (www.trustpetcuisine.com) cooks and delivers to your home Chef cooked pet meals made from locally purchased human grade ingredients.

    A year later my arthritic, constantly napping elderly Harris is running up stairs, participating in pet activities and impressing his vet (who is in favor of traditional cat food).
    Seeking out good pet food in your area is worth it. Pet companions are priceless!

  • We were very mindful when it came to our pets. We used Nature’s Recipe for years. Then one of the cats and one of the dogs started having health issues and the doctor recommended a special diet. Both foods are corn based which I hate. We’re looking into other options, but with them needing special foods because of health issues, it’s hard knowing what’s right…

  • I have been COMPLETELY slacking in the pet food dept. Ultimately I would like to find a good organic vegetarian/vegan food for her (our dog) but I haven’t found one yet.

  • Ugh. The little dog has allergies that require him to take medication every day. He eats a special food that is the most affordable I can find without corn and wheat, a “lite” food because he tends to put on weight, and with skin-soothing oils, that won’t give him hideous gas …. you see the complications. The big dog eats Costco superpremium dog food with a fish oil supplement. My focus has been on avoiding corn, which gives them both problems, and keeping the nutrition high, while keeping prices relatively affordable. I looked at BARF but was worried about the bones after reading horror stories online.

    With the little dog’s grooming and his medications and the big dog’s fatty tumors … I just cannot add any more pet expenses to our budget.

  • Our vet didn’t like the BARF diet because of the teeth factor- at the time we were asking about our 12 year-old lab. He said it was obvious that our dog had eaten a dry diet because his teeth were excellent. He also felt it was horribly expensive. We probably could do it, because we live in an area with a lot of naturally raised meat, and I find it sort of appealing in a yucky way, but decided against it. We fed him Iams. The two dogs we have now eat Nutro Max Large Dog. We decided on that brand because corn is not in the top 3 ingredients. I would like to be able to feed them the Nutro Ultra, but we just can’t afford it.

    http://bones-would-rain.blogspot.com

  • I am gradually opening up to the possibility of cooking for our pets. As a vet tech I am primarily concerned with what is best for them and it scares me that a homemade food may lack some of the nutrients that are essential for good health. However, at a conference last weekend I came across a great book that targets veterinary professionals and contains many great recipes and a lot of information about homemade diets. I hope to purchase it when I can afford it. In the mean time we used Science Diet for awhile and then switched to Iams. You get what you pay for with pet foods so I would definitely stick with something higher end.

    There are a lot of commercial organic or natural pet foods out there that could be a great option. We have 3 big dogs (totaling almost 300 pounds) and a cat so it isn’t really realistic for us to pay the premium cost right now. Ideally someday we can use our own homegrown meat and other local ingredients to feed them something healthy AND self-sufficient!

  • I’m surprised to see WIlla say her vet advocates dry food for healthy teeth. My friend’s partner is a vet and advocates giving dogs and cats bones to chew on. They’re pretty cheap at most butchers, and they double as entertainment.

    His boss, the practice owner, tells him not to advocate bones because the practice sells a special factory-made dog treat that is also supposed to clean dog’s teeth. People who advocate highly processed foods, for people or pets, may well be profiting from it.

    I can’t imagine how dogs and cats are supposed to do any better on highly processed food than they would on raw or minimally processed fresh food.

  • We use Pet Promise because it contains no byproducts, no factory farmed meat, etc. I need to check out California Natural too I guess and compare.

    Still struggling with the litter. We use World’s Best Cat Litter on Beth’s rec but I’m not totally happy with it. Still too stinky.

  • I tried the raw diet with my kitty for a couple of months. She was a little slow learning how to eat it. She would wolf down the chicken chunks like it was kibble, and then it would come right back up. And she hadn’t mastered bones yet, but she was learning.
    Sadly I lost my job and had to go back to dry food for cost reasons. If I ever get to the point where I can raise my own rabbits/chickens I will probably try and get her back on the raw diet.
    The dry food is something with real meat in it and less of the corn fillers, but I can’t remember the name. It’s definitely NOT what the vet recommended, she recommended a food with corn as the first two ingredients. *roll eyes*

  • Julie, I’m coming to realize how lucky we are to have a non-fussy cat. Sure, she prefers if I put a could of tablespoons of water in her food, but she’ll eat it either way. And she doesn’t seem to mind too much if we change litter or food brands. Phew! I’d like to get to a point where I make their food… what ratio of veggies : barley : pasta : meat do you use?

    Rob, Wow, your cat likes pizza – hilarious!! Ours doesn’t understand people food. Occasionally she has a fleeting interest in yogurt or milk. I like the sound of the natural pet pantry! Wow – I wonder if there is one near me that I don’t know about….?

    Karen, Sounds like an interesting business you have. Normally I don’t keep comments that verge so close to an ad, but it’s an interesting idea so I’m keeping yours. I do hope you continue to join in the discussion.

    Heather, It certainly is hard knowing what’s right! We feed our cat part dry food, and part wet food, because cats are so prone to urinary tract infections. I really, really, really want to find a better substitute for the canned food.

    Willo, good luck in your search! Vegetarian food is difficult for pets because unlike us, they have a tough time being vegetarians. Particularly cats. Make sure you seek out a vet or other resource who is willing to help you figure out a good, healthy solution that sticks to your values.

    Cheap Like Me, Oof, I’m sorry! Sounds like you’re dealing with plenty.

    WIlla, Nutro is what we used before we switched to California Natural.

    WIlla & Kate, I believe vets recommend a dry food diet because in the past there was a controversy between canned/wet food and dry food. (It makes a big difference – Ellis came to us with horrible teeth from a previous situation, and we’re sure it was because he ate whatever human scraps they threw out to the dogs.) But from what I’ve read, a raw food diet is supposed to be just as good as the dry food at cleaning teeth. And bones are important – not ones that can break apart and hurt their digestive system, but stock bones or Greenies or something along those lines that will scrape the tartar off their teeth.

    Also worth noting that our cat lived in the wild for 4 years, eating a raw diet. Her teeth are beautiful.

    Jena, Ooh, I hope you share those recipes! I would love to know!! And LOL, with 300 lbs of dogs, I wouldn’t be able to afford Organix. I think it’s a great idea to raise your own food for your whole family!!

    GB, Still struggling with the litter, too. Ugh. We tried clay litter from a local company, thinking that at least it’s a local company! But nope, it was terribly dusty. We’re going to kill all our lungs by using it. I’ve tried all the newspaper ones and they end up everywhere and don’t scoop well at all – disastrous. So now I’m going to try “One Earth” Cat Litter. Have you tried it? It’s corn cobs, pine, and yucca… and supposedly it clumps! I’ll let you know.

    Jennie, Interesting. I suppose since our cat was living in the wild before we brought her into our lives, she’d adapt pretty well. Hmmm….

  • Pet Lover

    From raw meat and bone diets, large portions of grains to fruit and even supplements one viewpoint supported by most dog lovers seems to encourage the feeding of a good quantity of meat. No matter what other foods you choose to give your dog, meat and meat products will always form an important part of a healthy diet for your dog. Unlike us, dogs are carnivores and need meat protein in their diets. Meat is the most important part of a healthy diet for your dog.

    Pet Feeding Myths

    Dogs Health

  • This is what I was searching lately ! Thank You. We sell Hill’s Science Plan amongs other pet food.

  • Reef Aquarium

    Ooh There are many excellent posts here on your blog.

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