Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost Dog Food Topper Made with Real Raw Meat
Dog food toppers are getting to be quite a big thing in the dog industry!
You can find them in just about any common protein flavor recipe that is common for dogs and they come in different forms such as small soft chunks, gravy, and broths.
I can’t help but think - as a dog it might get boring eating the same food morning and night day after day … after day … after day …
Dog food toppers give you a chance to add variety to your dog’s diet without completely changing their main dog food. It’s kind of like putting your favorite gravy on your mashed potatoes.
As part of the Chewy.com Influencer Program, we had the opportunity to try Instinct Raw Boost Mixers - dog food toppers made by Nature’s Variety (Chewy provides product to Maui free of charge in exchange for an honest review, and you know Maui is always honest).
Read on to find out if Maui and Emma liked this product!
Nature’s Variety Freeze-Dried Raw Boost Mixers
I was amazed at the variety of flavor recipes available for the Instinct Raw Boost Mixers! Usually, you have about four or five recipe choices but with this dog food topper/mixer you have 9 different flavor and benefit recipes to choose from, all of which are grain-free!
- Gut Health
- Immune health
- Mobility support
- Cage-free chicken blends
- Beef blends
Is Instinct Different Than All the Others?
Instinct believes that dogs should eat as they would in nature. They believe this can be done by feeding real, whole, pure natural raw foods with NO artificial ingredients and NO unnecessary preservatives.
Instinct does not heat their ingredients or diminish the nutrients in the ingredients with unnecessary processing.
Instinct foods are made using Cold Pressure technology also known as High Pressure Processing (HPP). This type of processing does not cook the ingredients and preserves nutrients in the foods.
To maintain nutrition and taste, Instinct creates their RAW foods by starting with frozen raw whole ingredients. They then remove the moisture through Cold Pressure technology which results in freeze-dried 100% raw foods.
Why Instinct Raw Boost Mixers Instead of Raw Meat?
Raw Boost gives you the benefits of feeding raw whole foods to your dog without having to worry about the mess, the time, contamination, and where to store it all!
Raw Boost dog food mixers are soft and dry so there is no mess and it eliminates all of that time you would need to cut up raw meat. They come in compact resealable bags so they take up very little room on your shelf (so they take up no space your fridge or freezer).
The bag of raw boost mixers we received a couple weeks ago indicates it is best if used by May 30, 2020! They have such a long shelf life because all moisture has been removed so the raw ingredients and nutrients are far less likely to go bad.
Special Benefit Raw Boost Mixers
Three of the Raw Boost Mixers dog food toppers are formulated to provide certain nutrients to benefit your dog’s overall gut or immune health or mobility.
Maui would have been happy trying anyone of the flavor recipes but I chose the mobility support because I wanted to learn what about that recipe could be beneficial to dogs perhaps experiencing age-related aches and pains and arthritis.
I'm not sure the amount we feet of the special recipes will really have a dramatic positive effect but I feel any little bit can help especially if your pup is suffering with painful joints, intestinal issues, and/or health problems.
Mobility Support Recipe
This recipe formulation indicates it provides natural glucosamine and chondroitin to help support healthy joints and hips.
Highlighted ingredients in this recipe are:
- New Zealand green-lipped mussel
Natural glucosamine comes from the hard outer shell of crustaceans and mussels. It also comes from a few other food sources such as beef trachea, chicken feet, pigtails or oxtails, beef knuckle bones, other cartilage-rich bones, a nice homemade bone broth, and yes, green-lipped mussels.
The other highlighted ingredients are all known to help decrease inflammation.
So, all good stuff for helping to improve mobility.
Gut Health Recipe
It comes as no surprise to me that the gut health recipe includes the dog superfood pumpkin. (To learn more about why pumpkin is a dog superfood read my article about it HERE.)
Ingredients highlighted in this recipe are all known to help promote overall gut health and include:
- Sweet potato
- Chicory root
- Apple cider vinegar
Immune Health Recipe
Functional ingredients that make this recipe great for immune health are:
- Beets - high in vitamin C & folate
- Flaxseed - good source of iron (helps transport oxygen in the body)
- Kelp - multiple great effects including detoxification, antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, and improves digestive health
- Blueberries - high in vitamin K, vitamin C, potassium, manganese, and antioxidants
- Cranberries - antioxidants and an anti-inflammatory benefits
How to Feed Raw Boost Mixers
The bag indicates to add ¼ cup to your dog’s food if they weigh up to 20 pounds (that’s Emma size) and ¾ cup to the food for dogs weighing 41 to 60 pounds (that’s Maui size).
The Mobility Support recipe says ¾ of a cup has 232 calories! That’s quite a lot of extra calories so to compensate for those extra calories I cut back Maui (and Emma’s) regular kibble to about ¾ of what they usually get.
I just sprinkled the Raw Boost Mixer on top of Maui and Emma’s regular dry kibble.
You will probably want to cut back on your dog’s regular food as well. That way they will get about the same amount of calories and be less prone to eating too much and gaining weight. Although, if you just feed the mixers once in a while and it is not a regular thing, you probably don’t need to worry about the calories and weight gain too much.
Taste Testing Instinct Raw Boost Mixers
How Much Do You Get?
The Specialty Recipe Instinct Raw Boost Mixers and the Raw Boost Mixers Blends come in 5.5-ounce bags.
The straight-up beef, chicken, lamb, and turkey recipes come in a variety of sizes - 5.5, 6, and/or 14-ounce bags.
The mobility support bag indicates it contains twenty 1/8 cup servings. Look at the serving diagram on the bag –
1/8 of a cup isn’t even on the list. I consider this to be a bit deceptive - but maybe I'm just sensitive.
If I were to feed only Maui the recommended amount of ¾ cup each time, this 5.5-ounce bag would be enough for 3.3 servings.
If I were to feed Emma the recommended amount of ¼ cup, the bag would be enough for 10 servings.
Don’t get me wrong, I love their raw mixers; I just don’t love that they are trying to make you think you will have more servings than you actually will (unless your dog weighs about 10 pounds).
Another Great Way to Use Raw Boost Mixers
If you have a large dog like I do, feeding the Raw Boost Mixers on a regular basis would get pretty expensive. Once in a while as a special dinner treat - yes, but every day - nope.
A lot of people who left reviews on Amazon and Chewy indicated they liked to use the Raw Boost Mixers as treats! I love this idea!
Using the mixers as treats your dog will still get the benefits of the raw diet but your 5.5-ounce bag will last you much longer!
Lowest Prices and Where to Get It
Nature’s Variety and Instinct can be found at most pet stores including privately owned, smaller chains, and large chains like PetSmart and PetCo.
Prices for the 5.5 ounce bags are pretty stable across the board. Here are the lowest prices I could find for Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost Mixers 5.5-ounce bag –
Chewy.com - $11.50 to $11.99 (a little less if you sign up for Autoship and free shipping over $49)
Amazon.com - $11.50 to $11.99 (free two-day shipping if you have Amazon Prime)
PetSmart - $11.99
Recent Reviews on Chewy and Amazon
Maui & Emma’s Final Review of Instinct Raw Boost Mixers Mobility Support Recipe
I let Maui and Emma try these first as a treat. It's always interesting when they try something new; you can tell by the look in their eyes and how quickly they sit for another how much they like what you give them.
Emma went a little bit bananas after she tried one piece. She didn't know whether to bounce around (she's quite a jumper) or to try and sit for another. Once I asked her to sit her little rear end hit the floor pretty darn fast! She couldn't get enough of them!
Maui is always a bit calmer for treats. She knows the drill - sit or follow a command and treats will be given. She absolutely loved these as well and her rear stay planted to the floor anticipating the next piece!
Let us know if you tried these Raw Boost Mixers!
Maui and Emma absolutely love them and want to know if your dog does too!
Please leave us a comment below with your story or just to say woof!