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Dental treats for dogs

2

Merrick Fresh Kisses Dental Chews for Dogs | Great For Clean Teeth and Fresh Breath!

Who doesn't like kisses? Especially when they are fresh kisses!

I think one of the fun things about having a dog is all the little kisses ( or big slobbery ones if you have a big dog)! Dogs are so willing to give unconditional love and affection. It's one of the most endearing qualities about them.

Unfortunately some of our dogs don't have the best breath and getting those loving dog kisses can be a little less than pleasant. Sweet kisses but bad breath!

There are several dental chews out there for dogs to help keep your dog's teeth clean.

Today we are going to see what Maui and Emma think of the Merrick Fresh Kisses All Natural Double-Brush dental chews. Yes, I said double-brush!

Not only will these dental chews help keep your dog's teeth clean they will also give your dog fresher breath! 

Let's check them out!

The Merrick Company

I love the Merrick company because it was started by just a normal guy wanting to make great treats for his dog.

The company started in 1988 with the simple single natural treat called the Flossie. It ended up being a hit at trade shows and the company has done nothing but grow from that point on!

“Our faith, family, and country have always been at the core of what our company is about. 

It was true when we started, and it’s still the same today.”

– GARTH MERRICK

Merrick's Five-Star Promises

As a company of integrity Merrick policies you five things:

  • they use local growers for fresh produce and meats
  • they use whole foods - no added sweeteners, preservatives, colors or other unnecessary additives
  • foods are cooked in their kitchen located in Texas
  • their foods offer balanced high-quality nutrition
  • they offer "better food for better health"

Fresh Kisses Dental Treats

Fresh Kisses treats for dogs were formulated and designed with two purposes in mind -

  1. to clean your dog's teeth
  2. to give your dog fresher breath

Item number 1 is obviously very important to your dog's health but I would say 2 will also improve your daily life! You know what I mean if your dog has ever come up and breathed directly in your face!

Fresh kisses are available in two recipes. One is infused with coconut & botanical oils and the other recipe is infused with mint flavored breath strips!

Unique Design Cleans Teeth Better

At first glance, you may think that the Merrick Fresh Kisses looks similar to another brand of dental treat (yeah, the Greenies) but the Fresh Kisses have a unique design that enables them to clean your dog's teeth a little bit better.

Fresh kisses are designed as a double brush. They have a little toothbrush shape at each end of the treat so as your dog chews, those little toothbrush nubs get in there and give your dog's teeth a better clean.

Fresh Kisses Coconut & Botanical Oils Recipe

For being part of the Chewy influencer program Maui and Emma had the opportunity to try the Fresh Kisses free of charge in exchange for their (and my) honest opinion of the product.

We chose the coconut & botanical oils recipe.

The Fresh Kisses come in four different sizes -

Fresh kisses dental treats sizes

merrick.com

Since Emma is about 20 pounds and Maui is about 60 pounds I opted for the medium-size - trying to hit the in between. Maui has a tendency to easily put on weight so I often tend to get a smaller sized treat than is recommended for her weight anyway.

Taste Testing

Wow, I don't think I've ever seen a dog so excited to taste a treat before! I thought Emma was about to lose her mind waiting while was taking a couple product photos!

Emma suffered through having to wait to taste her Fresh Kisses while I tried to get them both settled to pose for a "with the treats" photo. This took way longer than I expected because Emma could not contain herself! I actually can't believe I got her to sit still long enough for a photo and she didn't go ahead and steal the dental treat while I was futzing around with my phone. What a good girl!

I could definitely smell the coconut as they ate their Fresh Kisses! This flavor recipe has peppermint oil as an ingredient and I can definitely smell the mint!

Coming out of the bag they didn't really have a bad smell either. I could smell a little hint of the mint coming through.

Both Maui and Emma love these. I can't really tell you that they love them more than any other dental treat we have tried, but they are definitely a hit that is for sure!

Botanical Oils in the Coconut & Botanical Oils Recipe

I was interested to know what potential oils are actually in this recipe so I figured you would be interested as well.

Oils included in the ingredient list are:

  • Coconut oil
  • Sunflower oil
  • Peppermint oil
  • Lemongrass oil
  • Rosemary oil

Other ingredients - Say What?

The ingredient list for these treats is pretty short but there are a couple things in it that pique my curiosity.

One of the ingredients in these First Kisses is "natural flavor". I always hate something generic like that. What actually is "natural flavor"? The natural flavor of what? The natural flavor of  .. Grass? Strawberries? Paper?

If it is something like the natural flavor of strawberries, why don't they just say that? While this may just be a little pet peeve of my own, I don't understand why they just can't list what the natural flavor actually is.

They also list "fruit juice color". Fruit juice color? What in the heck is that and what does that mean? How do you just add the color of a fruit juice? So does that mean they actually do put in artificial color? I'm not sure. While their website says they do not add artificial colors I'm kind of at a loss of what "fruit juice color" may be.

Calorie Content

Is always important to watch the calories you give your dog.

When you give big treats like this they can pack a lot of calories and you definitely have to adjust the amount of mealtime food to give them to compensate for the extra treat calories.

This medium-size coconut and botanical oil Fresh Kisses contains 103 calories per treat.

That is definitely way too many calories for little Emma to get on a regular basis in a snack so I would definitely purchase a smaller size for her in the future. 

Both dogs will get a bit of a decrease in their regular food tonight at dinner time to compensate for these extra calories.

Prices and Sizes

The Merrick Fresh Kisses dental chews come in threes size packages that I will call small, medium, and large.

You will get a different number of dental chews per package depending on the treat size that you pick.

For example, if you pick the large package you will get:

  • 16 large-sized chews
  • 22 medium-sized chews
  • 36 small-sized chews
  • 78 extra-small sized chews

Right now the prices on Chewy.com are around:

  • $8.50 for the small package
  • $12.75 for the medium package
  • $25.50 for the large package

Chewy.com has some of the Fresh Kisses packages on sale right now ( prices and special offers are obviously subject to change).

If you'd like to take a look and check them out click on the button below to be magically transported to Chewy.com.

Buy now on chewy.com

Merrick Fresh Kisses Final Review

Maui and Emma thoroughly enjoy the Merrick Fresh Kisses coconut and botanical oils dental chews!

Here is their final review:

Has your dog tried these before?

Does your dog (or you) prefer these or a different dental chew?

Emma loves these! Does your dog?

Leave us a comment below!

14

Greenies Pumpkin Spice Dental Treats for Dogs!

 

It might technically still be summer outside, but I can tell the weather is starting to turn towards autumn. Leaves are just starting to change color and mornings are very brisk and cool. Besides a change in the weather, fall always instigates a craving for cold weather comforts.

I find myself gravitating more towards warm soups, steamy tea, and hot cocoa. Besides those obvious “warm me up” favorites, there is another fall comfort that cannot be ignored.

Pumpkin Spice!

Starbucks has already released their Pumpkin Spice Latte; Caribou Coffee has a Pumpkin Pie Cooler; Dunkin’ Donuts has a Pumpkin Iced Coffee and a Pumpkin Macchiato; Einstein Brothers have a Pumpkin White Chocolate Mocha, and ….. well, you get the idea!

With all of this pumpkin spice going on, why should dog treats be left out of the picture? They’re not! Greenies Dental Treats are getting into the game with their Limited Edition Pumpkin Spice Flavor Greenies Dental Treats!

Let’s check them out!

 

Greenies Dental Treats Pumpkin Spice Flavor

Greenies Pumpkin Spice flavor dental treats for dogs is a limited edition flavor! (Ummm, that means you better get some for your dog really fast.)

I’m not sure when they hit the market but we have been a frequent visitor of PetSmart the last few months and these greenies were there a couple weeks ago when we stopped in. I’m guessing they might last through sometime around Halloween, or perhaps just until supplies are gone.

The Pumpkin Spice Flavor Greenies come in all of the usual Greenies sizes him:

  • Teeny (for dogs that weigh 5-15 pounds)
  • Petite (for 15-25 pound dogs)
  • Regular (for 25-50 pound dogs)
  • Large (for 50-100 pound dogs)

 

 

Show Me the Ingredients

The ingredient list for pumpkin spice flavored Greenies is fairly long so this is a copy/paste from the Greenies website:

 

Greenies pumpkin spice ingredients

 

The ingredient list on these puppies is a lot longer than for most of the treats we review. Greenies start out with wheat flour and wheat gluten as the first two main ingredients, so definitely steer away from these if your dog has a gluten sensitivity.

They also contain natural poultry flavor, so keep this in mind if your dog has a poultry sensitivity or allergy.

They contain a lot of added minerals and vitamins, which is great!

 

Ingredient Sourcing

I searched high and low on the Greenies Dental Treats website and could find no indication of transparency regarding where they source their ingredients. That being said, it does not mean their ingredient sources are shady, it just means that they are not sharing.

Their website does indicate greenies are made in Kansas City

“with quality ingredients from around the world”.

Greenies is a MARS company and Mars abides by The California Transparency in Supply Chains Act. This Act boils down to treating everyone touched by their business

“with fairness, dignity and respect” and they seek “to promote and advance respect for human rights across our value chain – from farms to our suppliers’ factories to our own workplaces.”

 

Nutrition Information and Calorie Count

I purchased the large size Greenies treat for Maui as her ideal weight is 60 pounds. Taking a look at the calorie content of these treats, I will definitely have to cut back a bit on her food the days she gets these.

Calorie content for the large size pumpkin spice Greenies is 145 calories per treat!

 

 

Calorie content for the other sizes is:

  • Teeny: 26 calories/treat
  • Petite: 55 calories/treat
  • Regular: 90 calories/treat

Maui tends to put weight on easily so next time I purchase we will probably opt for the Regular size rather than the Large. It’s an easy way to control portion size and calories but still give her the great teeth cleaning benefits of a Greenie.

I was really surprised when I looked at the nutrition information to see how much protein these have!

 

 

Size and Appearance

Pumpkin spice greenies dog treatsAs dog owners, we probably all know what Greenies look like! That trademark toothbrush shaped green, chewy dog treat.

The pumpkin spice Greenies are no different.

The large size is about 4-5 inches in length. Since we did not purchase the other sizes, I’m unable to fill you in on their size.

 

Do They Smell Like Pumpkin Spice?

When I received these, the first thing that went through my mind is … do they smell like pumpkin spice?

Well … they might a little bit, but more than smelling like pumpkin spice, they smell like dog food to me. Maybe dog food with a very tiny hint of a pumpkin pie spice scent.

So don’t get too excited and think you’re going to be hit with the delicious aroma of a pumpkin pie when you open the bag.

 

What People Think of Them

The pumpkin spice flavor has not been out very long this year so reviews are limited, but the reviews that are in, are great –

4.6 to 4.9 / 5 stars on Chewy.com  (depending on the size of the treat).

 

 

The pumpkin spice flavor has a 4.2 / 5-star rating on Amazon.com!

The Greenies brand is hugely popular and well-liked. The regular greenies dog dental chews have almost hundreds to even thousands of reviews with 4-5 / 5-star ratings!

 

Price and Where to Get These Goodies

Greenies are so incredibly popular, they can be found probably at any online or brick-and-mortar pet supply store.

Here are just a few retailers and prices (for the Regular size pumpkin spice):

Chewy.com: $15.99

Amazon.com: $13.99

PetSmart: $15.99

Walmart: $15.99

Not sure why Amazon has them two bucks cheaper, but that is what the price is today! I would suggest if you are interested in giving these a try to snatch them up quickly (if you are a prime member, you get free shipping).

 

An Honest Thought

I have a memory from years ago, hearing about Greenies causing intestinal issues if your dog did not chew them well. This thought popped into my mind but I do not know how much validity there is to it (if it is true or not). Maui really chews these up so I’m not worried about her when she eats them. If you have a dog that does not chew their food well, you might want to look into the intestinal issues thing before trying these.

 

Pros and Cons

I personally have no cons regarding this product except for the non-transparency regarding ingredient sourcing. The dental chews are soft and chewy, so they will help get that tartar off Maui’s teeth.

Maui has absolutely zero cons about these Greenies! I tried to get our usual “pose with the bag” picture but she would not stop trying to get the bag open so I had to settle for whatever shot I could get!

Chewy and Amazon reviewer pros and cons:

Pros

  • Smell good
  • Great for teeth
  • Dog loves them

Cons

  • Some felt they were pricey (I find the price to be reasonable)
  • Smell bad (I don’t think they smell bad but don’t expect them to smell like your pumpkin spice latte)

Maui golden retriever with greenies pumpkin spice

The Verdict

The river of drool lets me know that these Greenies Pumpkin Spice Flavored Dental Treats are a huge hit with Maui! She tried to steal the extras that were sitting on the table as I was trying to take pictures!

Drool, drool, drool and paw way up for Greenies Pumpkin Spice!

Enjoy the beginning of fall,

Lynne and Maui

P.S. These treats were provided to us free of charge from Chewy.com as a member of their Influencer Program in exchange for an honest review and our honest opinions.

 

Were you able to find these Limited Edition Greenies?

What does your dog think of this new flavor?

Share your experiences with us in the comments below!

 

 

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