Nature's Variety

Approval Rate: 77%

77%Approval ratio

Reviews 43

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  • by


    Wed Oct 13 2010

    1 star... I transitioned my dog ( slowly!!!) over to this about 6 months ago, if not longer. I had him on mostly the dry food but rotated with the patties and medallions. He did fine, was getting a good amount ( he's a 60 lbs dobe/boxer mix) I recently moved and before I left I bought 2(!!) new bags of this food. I noticed the bag had changed, and not for the better. They got rid of nice zip closure on it, I'm sure to save money... Anyway as soon as I fed out the old bag I started him on the new stuff and after about a week ( and no I didn't transition him on that... I was supposed to be the exact same stuff!) he started having really loose stool on a daily basis... But soon he started waking me up in the middle of the night because he had to go.. And my dog is absolutely NEVER wakes me up to go potty at night. As a pup he learned that was not an option, he had to do everything before we went to bed cuz mommy doesn't get up in the middle of the night! Well the times he did wake me u... Read more

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    Sat Sep 11 2010

    Hello, I've noticed you guys advertising the new packaging for sometime. Today, I finally opened a 'new' bag up of your Instinct: Chicken. Or at least I TRIED to open it. It was significantly more difficult to open than in the past. In fact, I had to get some scissors and cut here and there (why do packages say "Cut HERE" when they really mean "Cut Somewhere Else"? ) until finally, after some fiddling with the scissors, I cut right thru the 'new and surely NOT improved zipper!". New look indeed! Now i'll have to buy some tupperware to keep the kibble fresh! It's unfortunate that, despite the high price we pay for your product, you felt the need to shave a few cents off the quality of the packaging. If you are going to give us a lesser product, that should be reflected in the price, don't you think? Being able to open up a bag, pour, and slide it shut with the plastic zipper was a convenience and perhaps one of the perks of buying the most expensive food on the market. If y... Read more

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    Sat Sep 04 2010

    I thawed out some frozen natures variety today to feed my dogs and what did i find? a HUGE BLACK BUG frozen in the food! what kind of environment do these people make this dog food in? they claim to be the best and they are not! an effin bug? I will never buy this product again. i dont trust -- if they allow a bug to get intot the food, then what else is there? bad bad bad dog food. from now on i will make my dogs food!

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    Sat Aug 28 2010

    3 stars My dogs have both had diarrhea with a new bag of Prairie lamb dog food. The packaging is new - but I don't think the formula changed. But I think the food that is making them sick because I thought it was something else, fed the dogs rice/chicken till the problem went away, put them back on the food and they both got diarrhea again. Anyone else? •Written on my mobile phone•.

  • by


    Sun Aug 08 2010

    I recently bought a new bag of prairie chicken kibble> The color of the food is different. My dog used to lick the bowl now she picks at it and this morning she turned the full bowl over and covered it up with a little carpet. I was not aware of a recipe change, but the food was a lighter color. My dog has firm stools which turn to almost diarrhea at the end every time. She is panting all the time now. Anybody else have these problems. I have used this product for about 2 years with great results until the last 2 bags.

  • by


    Mon Jul 26 2010

    Since this review title seems to be for the company as a whole, I'm giving a generic three star rating. I think that Nature's Variety has the right idea with some of their products, and does things wrong with others. Overall, I like the Instinct kibble/canned line, though I feel that some formulas mix too many proteins, and I HATE that they use chicken fat in their rabbit formula... it would be nice to have that rabbit formula be a novel protein product for use in allergy cases. Also, I feel that the use of Montmorillonite in the products is a little disingenuous and misleading, as many of the positive effects of that clay are lost in the production process. The Prairie line is good, if a little overpriced for what it is, and again, they mix too many proteins in some formulas. Instinct Raw... well, I'm not overly enthusiastic about raw diets in general, and feel that many commercial raw foods are less than stellar, far from complete, and often imbalanced. Instinct Raw SEEMS to ... Read more

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    Wed Apr 14 2010

    I've read all the reviews here and have my own .02 cents to offer. I have two Pekingnese adult dogs. Although the NV kibble is nice and small, they had no interest in it. I wish they had as I understand it is a good product. I then tried the raw medallions and they would not even eat those. The canned Instinct interested them a little. Now, you are probably thinking that they are spoiled and that is why they are picky but actually that is not the case. Up until a few months ago, I did not know about the benefits of a more natural diet for my dogs. My kids were my focus. I happened on this info at a dog show and decided to "upgrade" my own dog's diet. I tried a few at the specialty store, Canad--, Well----, NV and so on. It wasn't until I tried Stella and Chewy's raw diet that my dogs got on board. So fellow pet parents, that is my input. After seeing how they reacted, I went to their website to say "thank you" and was impressed with their "story'. "Chow" (:

  • by


    Fri Apr 09 2010

    If you want the best grain-inclusive food. This is the one. I got the same fabulous results with NV Prairie chicken formula as I did with grain-free foods. I can't say the same for stuff like Canidae and natural balance. Shiny coat and he stayed lean on it. I really like it.

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    Fri Mar 26 2010

    I have had all five of my dogs on this since late 2009. I switch them between the chicken and the beef flavors. It is actually the first kibble that Joey, my 10 yr old dog, will eat completely not dressed up with soft food. I give them a little soft only with their dinner. With breakfast they sometimes get a teaspoon of pumpkin for dogs to keep them regular. I know there are allot of ingredients, but I think that is what keeps the food interesting; the first ingredient is meat, so that is most important. I believe that my dogs, a poodle, Bichon-poo, 2 Chihuahua's, and a Maltese/terrior/chihuahua mix, really enjoy this food because of the freeze-dried meat coating on the kibble. I feed my poodle (30lbs) and Bichon-poo (36lbs) --he is a standard mix, so he is pretty tall, not overweight at all-- 1/2 cup dry in the morning, and 1/2 cup dry at night with two tablespoons of soft. The three little dogs get 1/4 cup dry in morning, and 1/4 cup dry at night with one tablespoon soft. They eat i... Read more

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    Sun Mar 07 2010

    we switched our 9 month old puppy to this. she loves the food and i feel like i am giving her a more nutritious food. the chnge over went smooth. never had any problems. good quality with a good price. sign up on their website for a coupon for a fee 5# bag.

  • by


    Tue Feb 23 2010

    In the fall of 2009 we began adding more raw to our dogs diet by using the Nature's Variety raw medallions (lamb, rabbit, venison, beef and bison). In December we decided to test gong all raw and grain-free. While the raw worked well, the grain-free kibble options didn't provide the benefit we were looking for over the long haul (our dogs got gas!). The raw they did well on. Today we do more "Do it Yourself" raw which is a Raw Meaty Bones diet as discussed in Tom Lonsdales book "Raw Meaty Bones". We do provide Nature's Variety raw as treats and convenient meals. We also use other brands of freeze-dried raw that we top the kibble with - another convent meal where we can still include raw on top! The only issue we had w/any of the NV raw was the introduction of the bison. We had not used that before and the dogs did get liquid poop. We adjusted their next meal and added some pumpkin and that helped get things back to normal. Remember - sudden changes in diets, including new protein sou... Read more

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    Tue Jan 19 2010

    I've been feeding my dogs NV Raw Medalions in both Rabbit and Venison formula for about six months now. We switched from EVO to NV because the dogs were getting bored with the kibble. All has been perfectly fine until we got a tainted package of food. Now, both of my dogs have horrible GI infections because of poor quality control. Both of my dogs have been to the vet three times in the past week. They've both been put on a antibiotic to kill the GI bacteria as well as a probiotic to promote healthy bacteria. My dogs are only able to eat cottage cheese, pumpkin, white rice and boiled chicken now because of the severity of the pain they've been in. Also, we're having troubles now getting them back on a regular diet because of this issue. My dogs weigh under 20lbs each and are between one and two years old. I've filed a complaint with NV, and called my pet store to have them remove any other bags of NV from their shelves and send it back to NV in Lincoln, Nebraska. I've also ... Read more

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    Wed Dec 30 2009

    I have had my Blue Heeler on NV - Instinct for some time now and she's as healthy as a horse. I rotate her between the different Instinct Mixes and she does fine during and after every "switch". She's lean and energetic and eats each bowl of her food like it's the last one on earth. The only caveat to all this is that when switching from a more mainstream food/grain based food there will probably be an adjustment period as this food is significantly richer and different in composition. I switched my dog from Science Diet shortly after I adopted her and she did have soft to soupy stool for a week or so.

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    Tue Dec 22 2009

    I loooooooooove this food! My dogs do so well on it. They have had the duck and turkey and all but the chicken in the prarie line. Love them all and do well on all of them. I also can not believe the price. These foods are perfect for those that feed a rotation diet. :D

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    Thu Dec 10 2009

    I really wanted my puppy to like this food, but after switching from another brand just because I thought rotation was a good idea, he had the worst case of diarrhea he has ever had in his short little life of 9 months. I did a gradual switch and from the moment he started eating this food, he had the "runs". For about a week, he was getting up 2, 3, even 4 times a night having to go out and having an absolute miserable time. I don't believe he has a grain allergy, but something in this food just did not sit right, even thought the ingredients seem to be good. We are back on Taste of the Wild and this works out so much better for our pug/beagle mix. No more 2am trips outside!

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    Thu Oct 22 2009

    I have been using Nature's Variety Instinct kibble (Duck & Turkey, and Rabbit) and the raw medallions (all flavors but rabbit so far) for the past 2 months with great success. Two of my dogs get only the medallions and are doing fantastic. No more tear staining, good stool, great appetite and good weight. The other 2 are getting the raw medallions and the Instinct kibble. Again, great results...good stool, no pickiness, good weight, etc. I am going to continue to feed Nature's Variety as long as it is working this well for my gang!

  • by


    Sat Aug 15 2009

    I mix the Nature's Variety rotating formulas with Bil-Jac 50/50 to maintain some consistency. The results are UNBELIEVABLY AMAZING!!!! A Labrador with orthopedic issues does amazing, an allergic to everything AmStaff is content and happy, and the little AmStaff never tasted anything so delicious...well maybe the sidewalk out front but his tastes are still developing! How food is fed, how you transisition between foods, Exercise, and grooming all work with the food for a healthy dog. Food alone is NEVER the only or entire answer, thats the entire idea of holistic! Any food will make an dog fat if you don't exercise, period! 80lb Lab is satisifed with 1.5 cups a day, 75lb Pit 2cups a day, and the 55lb Pit is only 2yrs old so he gets 2 cups a day to keep him going strong. This small amount of food is because of their metabolisms ability to utilize all the goodness they eat. They will take a treat, though never from a stranger for some reason, but aren't searching for food or acting hungr... Read more

  • by


    Sun May 03 2009

    I have had lots of experience with all the products in the NV line. I work in a holistic pet store, and NV is the number one brand recommended to our customers by OTHER customers. Never had any negative feedback in eight years, just good solid evidence of dogs and cats with improved health and vitality! The one thing I don't see in the negative reviews is whether the animals were transitioned on to NV, or if the kibble was just introduced randomly into the animal's diet. All mammals have an ability to develop digestive enzymes to process foods they eat. If they haven't been given the time to develop those enzymes there might be some issues with gas and loose stools, especially if the pet was fed a mass produced product like Nutro (owned by the Mars candy company) or Eukanuba (owned by Proctor and Gamble). Their digestive system adapted itself to deal with fillers and not a large amount of real food. Example: A dog on Science Diet light will have adapted itself to cope with the large am... Read more

  • by


    Mon Apr 13 2009

    I have fed my dog NV since 2002 with complete trust and success. The last 2 bags of food I purchased have reacted like wallpaper paste in his belly. I am on sick watch again right now and the recent bag I purchased will be returned. I do not recommend this product. I suspect this mix was not proper and they are not doing quality control, just counting their profits. I would feed my dog Kibble and Bits before I fed him NV again. NV your dog food has just about killed my dog.

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    Tue Mar 03 2009

    This is one of the only Kibble my doggie will eat! We use the Prairie. Her favorite is the chicken. Also I have compared the ingredients to Innova and they have mostly the same ingredients like cottage cheese and alfalfa sprouts that are good for a doggies liver ^_^

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    Sat Feb 21 2009

    I show, train and breed Belgian Tervuren dogs and have been feeding the Prairie line since 2000. My 7 dogs love the rotation and always have beautiful, shiny coats and healthy teeth. I also feed from their Raw line (chicken, lamb and rabbit) when I have a pregnant or lactating girl. I've had wonderful results and superior muscle tone. No gas, no loose stools, no vomiting and excellent health. My puppies raised on NV Prairie Rotation have excellent growth rates, ears that are erect by 7 weeks, and dense puppy coats. After seeing my success, my vet now feeds NV.

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    Tue Jan 13 2009

    is good just high in ash ,

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    Sat Dec 06 2008

    Best food ever!!!! I've raised puppies and maintained seniors--they never tire of the lamb/oatmeal.

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    Sat Nov 29 2008

    Why don't we just have a separate Dogfood Forum? I don't spend a lot of time pondering and or/investigating all the dog food products on the market, but maybe that's just me.

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    Sat Nov 29 2008

    I like the idea of raw freeze dried foods that travel well.  Does anyone out there have experience with the freeze dried raw by Nature's Variety?  I have a sample bag, but I'm not sure I'm reconstituting it right.  I also don't know how many ounces a freeze dried medallion is?  I added the water according to the label, but the medallion still seemed hard after about 5 minutes.  Should I have warmed up the water or waited longer for it to dissolve?  The dog ate it, but not with his usual excitement as when he gets his canned Evo.  This may be my fault for not really knowing how to prepare the freeze dried portions.  Any ideas?

  • by


    Sat Nov 29 2008

    I love natures variety food. I use the raw the instinct DUCK is my fav!!!... it gives my dog smelly gas but he loves it and i use prarie all flavors the raw bones and all the cans.Ps. any dog food that uses corn, white rice, and a hull of rice or whatever STAY away from they are fillers .......... a hull is the shell of somthing like the outside of a seed absolutly useless for your dog but it dose help fill the food bag cheaply same with corn.go to www.naturesvariety/tryit or www.naturesvariety/iloveit and you can get buy one get one free bags of food or go to www.naturesvariety and they will give u a complete list of ingredents and AMOUNT to feed that will help with the constant pooping from i am reading about from some of you ...... you do not need to feed as much of this food for a meal and it soumds like some of you are feeding your dogs to large of meals and that why you are getting the gas and too much poop.

  • by


    Fri Nov 21 2008

    My updated review after 6 months of observation: If you believe in rotating meat protein sources for your dogs, like Natures Variety recommends, and I also beleive. I use their Prairie line of foods, alternating formulas every 5 bags or so. My finicky lab loved the Lamb formula and did real well on it for 4 months. I got 3 bags of the Venison formula when I brought my new pup home about 3 months ago. My lab made a smooth transition, and the pup "Keira" is also doing great on it. Try these formulas, the food is great, and the price is reasonable. I am feeding my lab about 2/3rds of what I was previously feeding as she put on 8 lbs with this food. She is now back down to a healthy weight and in excellent health. Feeding 1/3rd less makes this foods price work out to about the same as my previous food. Definite 5 star food as I can find no faults with this food at all.

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    Mon Nov 10 2008

    The only 6-star rated food at website without kelp or carrots (we have an allergic dog). The problem we found is the inconsistency from bag-to-bag. I think it has to do with storage time/conditions. If it goes "bad", it causes loose stools, foul-smelling stools. One of the bad bags we bought was previously-opened. The second time we had problems were with bags with dark kibbles, and lots of crumbs, as though it was the remnants of a batch. If they could get it conistently good-quality, it would be fabulous.

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    Tue Nov 04 2008

    I rescue/foster, and own several different mix-breed dogs varying in age and size. I kept my 10 lb Chihuahua mix on Nature's Variety for approximately 6 months after I got him. During that time, he defecated multiple times a day with small, really dark, loose stools. But worse than that was his breath. The stench was unbearable, and he had a clean bill of health so it wasn't medical-related. I tried him on chicken, lamb, and beef but the results were the same. Once I switched brands, his health improved significantly. Interestingly, his dog aggressive behavior seemed to be more intensified while on this food as well. One thing I did like about NV was the size of the kibble--they were the perfect, small size to use for training!

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    Sun Oct 12 2008

    This brand is pure hype! They say it is a natural cureall for skin disorders, kidney problems, inactivity, hyperactivity, loose stools, stomache upset, ect... If you speak to the reps for this brand they will have you believe that the only reason your pet is sick is because of the food he/she is ingesting. That isnt true in the human world and it isnt true for pets. Some pets just get sicker than others, same as us! I have seen many pets reject this food...find a brand that your pet can tolerate, dont believe the hype!

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    Thu Oct 09 2008

    I tried to switch to this kibble (Prairie) from Fromm Four-Star due to the convience of it being at a store nearby whereas with Fromm I have to order it online or drive 40 minutes away to find it. What a mistake! Wow, this food looks excellent in terms of the ingredients, however, even with a slow transitional switch one of my dogs had the runs like you wouldn't believe. He never, ever goes in the house or in his crate and the past two days I have come home to a present waiting for me in the crate. He has diarrhea and I am still working on trying to get rid of it. This is the last time I will switch kibble. And I have always had my dog on high quality holistic foods and none of the others ever gave me these problems. Maybe this will work for others, but it certainly did not work for me or my dogs!

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    Mon Sep 22 2008

    Have been using their frozen raw diet for two years and dogs show great health, no dermatology problems and great stamina. Their chubs that we use are 32 ounces that we cut up and serve in our portions. The Chubbs usually come at about 30 or 31 ounces, which is allowed by weights and measurements? - Nevertheless the product is made under human food production standards and the company is easy to work with!

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    Sun Sep 14 2008

    I own a Cattery, I breed Persian's and Himalayans. I open medallion bags and put into meal size bags and put back in original bag. I feed my lab twice a day, the amount based on 2% of her ideal body weight. This seems like great pet food, and I'm sure my dogs would love it, but I have 3 large dogs, and can't afford to feed them raw often.

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    Sun Aug 17 2008

    I tried the Venison and Millet. Food really has some great ingredients. But just didn't work for my little girl. She got mucousy poops from it for over 10 days. Did a stool sample and she had no issues, as soon as we switched the poop was better. Wish it would have worked for her, love the rotation idea.

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    Tue Apr 29 2008

    We love this. My 9 year old lab was having anal gland problems and by swithing him to the chicken and Turkey frozen Raw mixed with dry, cleared up the stink and gland issues, firmed up his feces. He eats his whole dinner now, where as before he would ho hum about it. Rating a 4 instead of 5 due to price.

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    Mon Feb 11 2008

    Just out of curiosity-if you feed the raw diet can your pets get tape worm from the "raw" meat?? I just had 2 dogs & 2 cats start meds for tape worm in all 4 & they all eat it? .......they all love it-great way to get them to take meds but could it be the cause?

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    Fri Jan 25 2008

    My dogs did terrible as well. I was feeding them Na ture's Variety Prarie Venion and Millet Formula  an d they both had very grainy stools for 3 weeks. It was just foul! I switched to their Inst inct formula (grainless) and found that their  stoo ls became very starchy and just very soft!!?? I dun  know why this is happening becos I read good revie ws in this brand!! No doubt it is grainless but how much tapicoca did they put inside their Instinct diets? and how many % is MEAT?? =(( I changed them to Orijen and they're doing well so far. (nice firm stools with less smell)

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    Sat Jan 19 2008

    We feed our one Min Pin the Instinct chicken formula and he looks better than he ever has, and he actually eats his whole meals.

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    Wed Jan 09 2008

    I've been feeding the raw chicken & turkey for about 2 years now. I breed and show pomeranians and they do very well on this particular formula. I did find that the beef and lamb and other formulas tended to give them bad diarrhea, so I stick with the chicken/turkey and they love it. I have switched a number of new dogs straight onto it with no ill effects, and only had 1 or 2 that were picky and wouldn't eat it. Usually they scarf it up. I've tried the kibble made by NV and that tended to give my dogs the runs, so I REALLY like the raw but am not a fan of the kibbles. Instead I feed either Eukanuba or Wellness kibble in the mornings and then the raw at night. One note though, if you have small dogs who like to scarf their food up really quickly, be sure to cut the medallions/patties into bite size pieces, I had one who eats too fast nearly choke to death the other week when she bit off more than she could chew. Thawing it more thoroughly may help with this too, I thaw mine in the frid... Read more

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    Mon Jan 07 2008

    I started feeding my dog this because my vet recommended it. Her behavior changed dramatically. She started panting, pacing and hypersalivating. I don't know if she had a stomach ache or if she was sensative to one of the many ingredients. I think Nature's Variety is a lot of hype.

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    Sun Dec 16 2007

    Unfortunately my dog did TERRIBLE on this food. First I tried to wean him onto the raw very slowly. Did OK at first but then came the non-stop vommiting and diarrehea. Maybe it was too much for my older dog. Then I tried the dry food. It made his stomach make the worst noises and his poo tripled in size. Too much fiber and grains for him.  I was very unimpressed by what this food did for my dog. Not every food is for every dog, though. What works for some may not work for others.

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    Mon Nov 26 2007

    Great ingredients.

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    Tue Nov 20 2007

    We have two 2 yr. old English Mastiffs and one 12 year old St. Bernard. They have been on NV prairie kibble for a year. The St. Bernie acts like he's 2. They rotate between all of the varieties. The St. Bernie doesn't care for the beef as much as the other formulas. We have to watch to not overfeed b/c it will make their bowels soft. It's a great food.