Ready for some treats that would be hard for any dog to resist? These treats are about as American as baseball, hot dogs, apple pie, and Chevrolet. All of those things historically signify America but I think the last several years have shed light on another item that should be added to that list. Bacon! Good ol’ bacon!
You can find bacon flavored just about everything now a days, and you know darn well dog treats are no exception! There are bacon flavored treats that have been around for a while but there’s a new contender in the bacon dog treat arena, and that is Blue Buffalo.
Blue Buffalo has introduced their Blue Sizzlers, bacon-style dog treats.
Let’s Open the Bag!
We are going to open the bag together and see what Maui thinks of these bacon dog treats.
She is definitely giving the initial smell and taste a paws up! The strips are soft and chewy and actually do resemble bacon. I might even go so far as to say they smell a bit like bacon, too. They are super easy to break into smaller pieces.
Calories and Guaranteed Analysis
Each Sizzler strip contains 33 calories.
What They Don’t Have
Blue always prides itself on having no corn, wheat, soy, or artificial flavors or preservatives in their treats.
The Blue Sizzlers dog treats are no different – they contain no red, blue, or yellow dyes; no BHA preservative; and no wheat, corn, or soy.
What They Do Have – The Ingredient List
On the front of the bag they say these Sizzlers are “a natural alternative to the real thing”. Let’s take a look at the ingredients:
Pork, pearled barley, rye, pea protein, potato protein, vegetable glycerin, tapioca starch, cane molasses, brown rice, brown sugar, water, cheese powder, oatmeal, gelatin, canola oil, pork fat, powdered cellulose, dried cultured skin milk, sunflower lecithin, natural smoke flavor, salt, paprika, potassium chloride, carrot preserved with citric acid and mixed tocopherols, oil of rosemary.
Let’s go over some of them that might be a little less familiar.
Pea Protein: Blue uses fresh green peas to obtain pea protein. Vegetable proteins are not inherently bad for your dog but they do not contain the same nutrients as meat proteins. Although pea protein does have a lot of fiber to help the GI tract and it is a good source of potassium and vitamin A.
Potato Protein: Potatoes are actually a good source of protein. “In the process of extracting the starch, a protein-rich juice is produced”. Potato protein is not bad for your dog, but many people feel vegetable proteins are cheap way to get protein into a food or treat but it’s not as nutritious as meat protein. Considering these are just dog treats and should not be a major part of the dog’s diet, it does not concern me too much in this product.
Tapioca Starch: Tapioca is a starch obtained from the root of cassava plants. It’s often used as a source of carbohydrates in dog foods but is generally lacking in any nutrients except carbs. It is generally thought of as a low-grade filler product.
Gelatin: You may be thinking of something like Jell-O when you think of gelatin but in the case of dog food and treats gelatin is mainly composed of collagen, something normally found in animal tissues, tendons, ligaments, skin, and bones. Collagen is super nutritious as well as fat-free and cholesterol free.
Powdered Cellulose: This product is made by cooking raw plant fiber (usually wood) with various chemicals to separate out the cellulose which is then purified. Powdered cellulose lowers fat content, increases fiber, helps stabilize food, and is super cheap.
Potassium Chloride: This compound is high in potassium and helps provide a salty flavor. It can also be used for flavor enhancement, microbial management, and can impact the texture, taste, and shelf life of food products.
Price and Reviews
Blue Sizzlers 6 ounce bag currently sells for:
- $4.96 on Chewy.com
- $7.99 on Petco.com
- beginning at $9.49 on Amazon.com
The 15 ounce bag is selling for:
- $8.72 on Chewy.com
- $14.99 on Petco.com
- $8.70 on PetSmart.com
- beginning at $13.99 on Amazon.com
Blue Sizzlers vs. Original Beggin’ Strips
If you’re anything like me you are wondering what the difference really is between the Blue Sizzlers and the Original Beggin’ Strips.
The calorie content and guaranteed analysis between the two are not really all that much different from each other. The difference comes in the ingredients. You can view the ingredient list for the Blue Sizzlers (listed above) and here is the ingredient list for the original flavor Beggin’ Strips.
Both products start out with pork and barley the first two ingredients. Although, as you move down the ingredient list for the Beggin’ Strips you can see a lot of wheat, corn, and soy products as well as several artificial colors: Red 40, Yellow 5, Blue 1, and Yellow 6.
Soy, corn, and wheat are often considered to be inexpensive fillers taking the place of higher-quality ingredients. Each also has their own little controversy surrounding it.
Soy Products: Soy is a good source of vegetable protein but it’s not as nutritious as a meat protein. Many feel most soybeans are genetically modified, contain pesticides, can produce gastrointestinal problems, and/or can interfere with the thyroid gland.
Corn: Corn in itself is really not bad nor is it exceptionally good. It does not have a lot of protein or nutrients nor is it highly digestible or a good source of energy. It does have some protein and carbohydrates.
Wheat Products: Many feel wheat is a grain that dogs are able to digest while others feel just the opposite. A lot of controversy surrounds the fact that some dogs have an intolerance or allergy to wheat (just like some humans do). For this reason many are viewing wheat as a bad thing. If your dog does not have an intolerance or allergy, wheat products in their diet can be just fine.
Artificial Colors: The FDA claims that artificial colors are safe when used properly. But, researching on the Internet to determine if artificial colors are truly bad for you discovers tons of articles discussing associations with hyperactivity in children, increased risk of cancer, and allergic reactions. Several countries throughout Europe have banned the use of artificial colors in food. I think that definitely sends a distinct message.
Maui’s Final Decision
I think it’s easy to tell by Maui’s reaction in the video when we opened the bag that she gives the Blue Sizzlers two paws up!
While I think fake bacon looks weird, Maui doesn’t really care. She went nuts for their smell and loves, LOVES their taste. I’m going to have to wipe up the kitchen floor from the drool.
P.S. We almost forgot to let you know that these treats were provided to us by Chewy.com in exchange for a truthful review and opinion of the product (Maui loves this gig!)
Happy bacon days!