Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost Freeze Dried Lamb Formula Treats, 4 oz. Package

Treat your dog with the wholesome goodness they deserve with Instinct Raw Boost Treats. Healthy and delicious, each treat gives dogs what they crave – real all natural chicken, turkey, and pure raw ingredients. These freeze dried raw treats are the perfect way to provide the healthy benefits of raw while satisfying your dog’s senses with a delicious, great tasting treat they’ll absolutely love. Made in USA facilities

Quick facts

  • 100% freeze dried raw ingredients including real lamb, lamb liver, carrots, and apples. Your dog will crave the great taste of freeze dried raw
  • All natural. No artificial colors, flavors or preservatives
  • Grain-free and gluten-free
  • No corn, no wheat, no soy, no fillers
  • A perfect reward or training treat
  • Dogs love these treats!
  • No refrigeration or freezing required
  • No fillers, no corn, no wheat, no soy
  • Use as a reward, training or to enhance your dog’s diet
  • Freeze-dried raw pet foods help promote vitality and energy, digestive health and lean muscles while providing a convenient way to supplement a raw diet

Top reviews

Probably better for cats and small dogs

For those who like are feeding their dogs the raw food diet, these bites may something you could use for treats.

There’s nothing artificial in the ingredients. As listed on the box: chicken, turkey, turkey liver, turkey heart, pumpkinseeds, apples, carrots, ground chicken bone, butternut squash, ground flaxseeds, montmorillonite clay, broccoli, lettuce, spinach, dried kelp, apple cider, vinegar, parsley, honey, salmon oil, olive oil, mixed tocopherols with citric acid, rosemary, blueberries, alfalfa sprouts, persimmons, inulin, sage, and clove.

This treat is labeled for dogs and cats but I have large dogs (80+ pound Labs) and these treats were finished in less than 5 seconds. For large dogs, I think this may work out better as a training treat – they are easy to break into pieces.

There are 18 in a package, about the size of a silver dollar, and about 1/2 inch thick. They have the consistency of freeze dried food and were very quickly eaten by my Labs. All loved it but for the size of my dogs, it’s an expensive treat.

MarissaFrench Settlement, LA

My Cat Went BERSERK When I Opened These

Our cat is pretty picky. He eats a raw handmade dinner at night and a high quality dry food with water in the morning. He is an outdoor cat. When I get something new to give him, he often will look at me partially interested and then take a sniff or a lick and want to go outside.

When our cat is hot, he often is not very interested in food. He flops down and complains all day when it is hot, but does not like much of anything- food included. The day I got my package of these treats in the mail, our cat was flopping underneath some planters on the porch. He was not overly interested in me when I came out the door, other than to give me a tiny “Mew” to let me know he was there.

I walked over to him with the box of sealed treats and told him I had a treat for him. He began to sniff the air. He almost never does that- especially with a sealed bag in a box! I opened the box and then struggled with the bag as the peel off top which leads to a zip lock back inside did not come complete off. The cat jumped on my leg and began to help me open the bag. Clearly he was interested.

Then I finally managed to get the bag open, and I broke one of the thick cakes of treat in half and held it up to him. He leaped in the air and grabbed it with his paws like hands, and forced it on the ground where he held it in place with both hands and claws. He held it and chewed on it with passion until it was all gone. He even licked little crumbs up off the floor, something he almost never does.

I decided to give him the other half and told him that it was all he would get. He jumped in the air and begged until he got the cake from me. He did things he rarely does when I offer him anything to eat. Then he polished off that too. When he was done, he went back to being the ultimate cool cat and adopting his sense of boredom at my existence he went back to flopping under the planter.

These treats smell delicious, stay fresh in the bag, and I have to say that these treats bring about such a passion and excitement in our cat that he gets all happy and really into the process of eating a treat, licking it all up until it is gone. I rarely see him get this excited over any food item except his homemade dinner at night. I can not recommend these highly enough. I am thinking these will be a regular feature at our house from this point on!

ChristiniaVolga, IA

Anyone remember dissecting owl pellets in grade-school?

That was my first impression of these treats out of the bag… dried up owl pellets (yick). Not that appearances matter all that much if your pet loves the taste but these are big treats and for my small sized dog, that meant I had to break it apart with my hands which was a touch bit unpleasant for moi.

As for my dog, he simply didn’t care for these at all. I really wanted him to like them since he turns his nose up to nearly every treat imaginable (including bits of people food, which I don’t consider a bad thing) and I’m always looking for ways to create a little variety for him. Aside from his dog food, the only treats I’ve found he likes are the soft/chewy Buddy Treats in chicken flavor and dried chicken cutlets (kind of like chicken jerky) which I stopped giving him after an incident last year where he nearly choked on one.

I thought these might have been a good replacement for the dried chicken cutlets that he liked so much because I assumed that these would primarily contain one ingredient (chicken) that had been formed into easier to chew treats. Of course, this is in part my fault for making such an assumption but I’d like to point out there wasn’t and currently isn’t an ingredient listing available on this product. The closest reference to what these treats contain are in the following descriptions “Your dog’s instinctive nature is to eat more meat, poultry, or fish protein and less grain… Instinct Raw Boost Bites are grain-free and gluten-free – perfect for satisfying your dog’s carnivorous cravings and nutritional needs… Raw Boost Bites are a pure and healthy treat made from minimally processed, freeze dried raw ingredients…” For those of you who may be interested, here is the actual ingredient listing in order as they appear:

Chicken, Turkey, Turkey Liver, Turkey Heart, Pumpkinseeds, Apples, Carrots, Ground Chicken Bone, Butternut Squash, Ground Flaxseeds, Montmorillonite Clay, Broccoli, Lettuce, Spinach, Dried Kelp, Apple Cider Vinegar, Parsley, Honey, Salmon Oil, Olive Oil, Mixed Tocopherols with Citric Acid (a natural preservative), Rosemary, Blueberries, Alfalfa Sprouts, Persimmons, Inulin, Sage, Clove.

Looks like they’re really trying to appeal to a ‘natural/holistic’ audience and I for one am okay with that – in fact, I try and avoid treats for my dog (and myself!) that contain ingredients I don’t know to be ‘real’ however… had I known these to be the ingredients up front, I’d probably have passed knowing that my dog already turns his nose up to the following food items (turkey, apples, carrots, broccoli, lettuce, spinach, blueberries or persimmons). There are also quite a few ingredients that I never thought about seeing if my dog would enjoy as well as a few ‘questionable to me’ ingredients (cloves??)

I gave this at least three stars because the ingredient list isn’t bad per se, but they should update their product description to include this information and although my dog didn’t care for them and I couldn’t coax him into a second bite – he did manage to eat a first bite after lots of encouragement. That’s a pretty big deal coming from a dog with as fickle a palate as his.

CarlettaMountain Pine, AR

4 Out of 4 Dogs Enthusiastically Approve

OK, I have to say this is an expensive doggie treat, but my dogs practically steamroll one another to get to the treats. The circular disks of freeze dried chicken are rather big- bigger than a silver dollar and more than a half inch thick. They are very light because of the nature of the treat, and the dogs practically inhale them despite their size. I have 4 dogs and one is somewhat picky, but they all love these treats.

There are under 20 treats in the package, so for $10-13 per package and with 4 dogs, they get about 4 treats a piece per package. And since these are treats, not bones, they don’t last very long. I think these might be the “Doggie Christmas Stocking” type treat for special occasions, not an everyday treat due to the expense. But nonetheless, the dogs LOVE them!

**4 stars due to price, but product gets 5 stars!

LynwoodAlma, WV

Great ingredients, dog can’t resist!

My dog is getting a little picky in her “old age” and doesn’t usually like treats anymore. The Natures Variety Raw Boost Bites though, she couldn’t resist. I actually caught her trying to get the bag open after it was left on the ground by the kids! I love that you can actually read the ingredient list. First several ingredients include Chicken, Turkey, Turkey Liver, Turkey Heart, Pumpkinseeds, Apples, Carrots… the rest of the list is just as great. Only ingredients that aren’t “real food” are Montmorillonite Clay and Mixed Tocopherols with Citric Acid (a natural perservative)

Great for pets with allergy problems!

ReannaDover, IL

Strange stuff, but the finicky cat likes it.

I don’t know what I was expecting with these, but I guess I was thinking the “bites” would be cat-sized, not Great Dane-sized. The “bites” are about 1.75″ in diameter and look like miniature hamburger patties. They are very light weight and are easy to break into pieces.

We’ve got two cats, the finicky one, and the one who will eat anything.

After breaking one piece into about 5 smaller chunks, I gave a chunk to each cat and was pleasantly surprised to see them both eating them, and actually chewing – they usually inhale smaller treats, so it’s nice to see them actually put their teeth to use!

I’ll definitely continue to purchase these, as it’s tough for me to find anything the finicky cat will eat, I just wish they came in a smaller size.

I’ve added some images of the product so you can actually see what you are getting. This 4-ounce package contained about 18 pieces.

LavoniaLudington, MI

Large and awkward size for cats, might be better for dogs

Another reviewer said these looked like “hairballs that have been compressed into cookie shapes”, and aside from the color, I’d have to agree. Each bite is far too large for an ordinary house cat, and the directions say “Treat your pet with 1 to 2 Boost Bites per day per 20 lb of body weight.” My cat weighs much less than 20 pounds, so I cut one of these up into quarters.

Well, I tried, anyway. They don’t cut, they crumble. They seem to have a texture like a fibrous insulation I’d used for soundproofing. I picked a piece out of the crumbs and dust and fed it to my cat. He swatted at it a few times then swallowed it whole, even though it was twice as large as his usual treats, which he normally chews. He wasn’t interested in more. I scooped together a pile of crumbs, added a couple of drops of water, and molded them into a lump. Wet, he loved it, first chewing up the lump then snuffling up the escaped crumbs. Right now he’s trying to convince me that more testing is needed.

The packaging hints at mysterious and wonderful benefits, but I’m a bit doubtful. It suggests:

“Instinct Raw Boost Bites may help promote:
*Vitality & energy
*Digestive health
*Lean muscles
Give your pets Instinct Raw Boost Bites and boost their health with the purity of raw food.”

The raw ingredients, after chicken and turkey parts, include fruits, ground chicken bone, butternut squash, montmorillonite clay, lettuce and spinach, and dried kelp and sprouts, among other things. The package goes on to claim:

“Our purpose is to empower people to transform the lives of pets. Freedom from allergies, improved skin & coat, weight loss, reduced incidence of ear infections, and healthier teeth and gums are just a handful of the amazing pet transformations that Nature’s Variety customers experience.”

If there’s an amazing pet transformation I’ll update my review. Personally, I’m hoping for an amphibious vehicle, but I’ll settle for a dog.

These are too large and messy, they require added water to really get the cat interested, and this is a pretty hefty price tag for high maintenance treats, but he does seem to like them once they’re wet.

AndriaLawley, AL

My dog loves them

These are dry but not hard, slightly crumbly, small cookie-sized treats. When my husband is having a cookie, he gives one of these to the dog rather than the people cookies he shared with her previously. She doesn’t feel deprived, and her health and our vet thank him!
DetraChestertown, MD

My Cats Love These

We have 3 cats and 2 will eat almost any treat, but one is very picky. It was around noon, so my one cat was in the kitchen, looking for “lunch”. I had just fed them an hour earlier, so there was no way I was opening another can of food. I thought this would be a good time to try out the New Raw Boost Bites.
I took one of the pieces (they are quite big and look like a bite-size cookie) and broke it into smaller sizes. For dogs, I imagine you would not have to do this.
Well, they gobbled it right up! I had to break apart another for them right away. Then satisfied, they forget all about lunch and went to go relax. I guess these are a satisfying enough treat to tide them over until dinner.
Knowing these are not only tasty (at least from watching them eat them) but also good for them makes me feel good about feeding them to my cats. You get about 18 in a pack, so I will be saving them for rewards or special treats.
RafaelSaint Marys, IA

Strange treat

This was listed as a cat treat. On the package it is stated to be for cats and dogs. I got them for my cats and thought it strange that the treat itself was the size of an oreo cookie. It is kind of crumbly like a stale cookie, but filled with real ingrediants like chicken and turkey. I had to crumble it into bite size pieces for my cats. They did eat it, but were less than enthusiastic. They prefer Temptations treats apparently. This would probably work better as a treat for dogs.
ShinCentereach, NY

Both cats liked them

I have used this brand for my cats and they have liked it (different flavors of wet food including rabbit and duck). When it comes to treats, my two cats tend to have different taste. I got them these treats and they both liked them. The treats are about the size of a chicken nugget but they are very light and almost crumbly. They smell fishy to me but they are chicken. The directions say they are treats for dogs and cats and to give 1-2 for each 20 pounds. Since my cats are about 10lbs each I decided to split 1 between the two.
I have had a good experience with this brand and I recommend it.
NelleMeadow Vista, CA

My dogs love these

Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost Bites Freeze-Dried Treats are just the perfect snack for my Westies. My male has allergies to most of the ingredients in dry dog food so I am very happy to recommend these treats for your dogs. Convenient, tasty and they smell good too. I will be looking for Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost Bites Freeze-Dried Treats at my local pet stores.
MetaPontiac, MI

Our Dogs Love Them

We have two dogs, a chihuahua and a beagle. Both of them love the Boost Bites Treats. As soon as they see the bag, they come running for their “cookie”. The treats are shaped like little cookies and are light brown in color so they actually look like gingersnaps.
The nutrition data and info on the label is impressive regarding how these treats can help your dog’s digestion and provide other health benefits. That’s always nice to know – that you’re giving your furry babies something that they love and it’s good for them as well. The treats are pretty soft so easy to chew for both dogs although I have to break up the one that the chihuahua gets – the cookie is a bit too big for her mouth. Overall, I think this is a wonderful product to pamper a beloved pet.
ClintonElmont, NY


I have a box of Milk Bone flavor snacks, a box of Beneful Baked Delights and one of Raw Boost Bites, lets see how they stack up with the first few ingredients.

Milk Bone: Wheat flour, wheat bran, wheat and bone meal, poultry by-products, beef fat, wheat germ, salt—and then a list of ingredients that no one can pronounce.

Beneful: Wheat flour, ground corn, glycerin, sugar, corn gluten, water, chicken by-product, preserved animal fat—-and then to the food color dye etc…

Raw Boost: Chicken, turkey, turkey liver, turkey heart, pumpkin seed, apples, carrots, butternut squash, flax-seed, montmorillonite clay, broccoli, lettuce, spinach, dried kelp, vinegar, parsley, salmon oil, citric acid, rosemary, blueberries etc. No food color, preservatives that are difficult to pronounce. They are made by a small company in NE that obviously care about the health of our pets.

Another interesting comparison is the amount moisture and protein. Milk Bone: 12% moisture, 15% protein.
Beneful: 20% moisture, 14% protein.
Raw Boost: 4% moisture 40% protein.

Rather interesting I thought, we usually don’t have time to check out what’s in our pets food at the store, always in a hurry. I just thought you might like look at this too.

Anyway, back to the treats! We have two min. schnauzers who always love their “goodies”—-and they are rather picky about their food. The Raw Boost Bites passed with flying colors, so I (with tongue in cheek) think these are the ones that picky pets would choose.

Would recommend this product to any pet lover.

SimoneGravois Mills, MO

Mixed Reaction & WAY Too Much FAT!!!!!! Read That Label….

We have 2 old Indoor Tabby cats about 12 years old who will eat ANYTHING and are 20 & 22 pounds. These monsters are still a terror that is fitting for their names of Lucy & Ethel…But I have to crush these up into crumbly pieces small enough for them to sample. First time they both LOVED it. Then Lucy threw it up and she has only thrown up 1 or 2 times in 12 years. Ethel throws up a few times ever week but did fine. From that time on however, they BOTH simply refused ever trying this food treat. So off we go to the neighbors & friends at work. 2 other families had the problem that NONE of the 6 other cats we tried would even try a sample of this food. We tried baby talking, tried bribery, tried everything but force feeding, the brats wouldn’t got NEAR this stuff!

Ok, now dogs. Well here is a completely different result. Every dog we tried simply DEVOURED the stuff. Now, when I walk out to get the mail I almost fear for my life with the way these dogs eyeball me:-) But has anyone ever read the label? The far content of 20% plus makes me a pet owner who would NEVER feed this to my pet. Not even as a treat. The manufacturer seems to almost (to me anyway) market this as a pet health food? Sorry, don’t care what pet loves it or hates it, I would never give any to any pet since I love them way too much to feed them all that I see on that label. Every time I complain to out Veterinarian about how big our cats are he explains that they are perfect actually. That they are just very large and STRONG, that it is not fat and not to worry. Sure different that what MY doctor tells Me….

Again, I am no Vet, but read the label, look that best friend you call a pet in the eye and ask yourself if you feel right about stuffing it with fat?

MarielaWashington, KY

Very tasty

My name is Patrick, and I am an American shorthair of indeterminate age and semi-discriminating tastes. My human asked me to write this review for the Instinct Raw Boost Bites: Chicken Formula she got through the Vine program because she is unable to sample them herself.

I gobbled up the portion my human gave me right away. As far as I’m concerned, these deserve two paws up. My housemate Tiger, also enjoyed the Bites. She has a more discriminating palate than me, but she liked these just fine. We think they compare favorably to other feline brand snacks, like Pounce and Temptations. Each piece is larger than say, a Pounce pellet, which our human broke into smaller pieces, so one or two make a more than adequate snack.

According to my human, the package says that the treats are grain-free and are made from “minimally processed, freeze dried raw ingredients.” Ingredients include chicken, turkey, vegetables like butternut squash and broccoli, ground flaxseed, salmon oil, and mixed tocopherols with citric acid (?). I’m not entirely sure what all that stuff means, but I would recommend the Bites to other cats who enjoy chicken flavored snacks that are meant for cats.

ZaidaBeacon, NY

Finicky Cat Purrs While Eating

Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost Bites Freeze-Dried Treats, Chicken compares favorable with Stella & Chewy’s Freeze-Dried Salmon & Chicken Dinner for Cats, 12oz which my older cat really enjoys.

As both foods are freeze-dried, they both need reconstitution–I heat some water, place some of the food in a shallow dish and pour the water over the food. I wait a few minutes, allowing the food to get soft, drain the water and then place in the cat dish. Its a great “hot” food alternative for the cat who is too finicky to eat other types of raw food.

Nature’s Variety is easier to portion. Each chunk of food comes as a disk around the size of a fifty-cent piece with about half an inch of thickness. Once softened, I have cut this a bit with a fork, but for the most part, my cat likes it so much she moves it off her plate to attack it whole. The Stella and Chewy food comes in smaller tater tot shapes which unfortunately, depending upon the way they are packed to be shipped can arrive crushed. For some reason, the crushed food does not appeal to my cat. In addition, it is difficult to decide just how much food to give the cat–once reconstituted, the food will go to waste if the cat, like mine, decides not to eat it all. Nature’s Variety’s size makes this easier to manage and will result in less waste.

Bottom line? Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost Bites Freeze-Dried Treats, Chicken, makes for a seemingly delicious entree item for my very picky cat who purrs while she eats it. Easy to portion out and reconstitute, it makes for a raw treat to “serve” on top of kibble or just alone. Recommended.
Diana Faillace Von Behren

TomiOkreek, SD

Most of My Furry Children Liked Them, But Not All of Them

I have six cats an am constantly trying different treats. I try to make sure that they get the healthiest of all foods but this is not always an option. Most treats on the market are glorified potato chips for cats.

The first think I noticed is these treats smell. Not horribly, but you can tell there is real food in them. They are a 1 ½ in circular biscuit. The perfect size for a dog, but I have to break it into six pieces for my cats. When breaking the biscuit up, it tends to crumble.

Of the five cats that eat treats, four were right there begging for them. When I put the treat pieces down one wolfed it down right away, two sniffed them thoroughly then ate them, and the fourth walked away without eating it. I gave another piece to the fifth cat. After sniffing it, he ate the treat. I tried a second time and the same cat refused to eat the treat but the other three wolfed theirs down and tried to fight over the one that was left on the floor. They seem to be a big hit among the furry children.

The first thing that I’m concerned about is the universal cat/dog treat. I was always under the impression that there is a reason why we have both cat and dog food. Both animals have different nutritional needs so they need to be fed separate foods. I’m a little leery of a product that is advertising as a meal for both animals.

The Amazon Product page advertises these as a meal, treat, or food topper. The Nature’s Variety website says that these are specifically treats. Please make sure you don’t feed these as food. Also, make sure to adjust the food so you are not feeding too many calories to your pet.

Finally, the box is huge, but the bag inside is small. It looks like there are only 16 biscuits in the bag. Having that in mind, you are paying almost eleven dollars (as of 8/3/12) for a box. To me, that is way too much to spend on treats.

Over all, I do think they are a good treat for pets. There are a lot of healthy ingredients and are a big hit at my house. Honestly I will not be buying these anytime because of the cost of them.

Shawn Kovacich
100% Cat Lover
Author and Creator of numerous books and DVD’s.

JuliaOakdale, LA

Odd texture…didn’t win my cats over

This product was made in a wafer form that had to be broken up for my animals to eat. When they first smelled it, they came running, but after a couple of bites, they turned their noses up at it.

We ended up throwing away most of the product.

KaroleSpring Hill, FL

Not Suitable For Cats

I selected these to feed to my cats. Because amazon didn’t list the ingredients I had little to go on. I was under the impression that these were 100% freeze dried “raw” chicken & turkey treats. When the pkg. arrived I was disappointed to see that there are a heck of a lot of other ingredients. Seems a high price to pay for a 4 ounce package of “treats” that don’t have ingredients much different from top quality foods such as Wellness, Before Grain & others. (Ingredient list is at the bottom of this review if you are looking for that info.)

These “bites” are only bite sized for medium to large dogs. For my cats they are WAY too big. I had to break them into at least 4 – 6 pcs. in order for the cats to be able to eat them. Even with my breaking them up, the cats still had to work at them. Their freeze dried condition creates a very airy & light biscuit that is spongy, not crunchy. It seemed to stick to the cats teeth making it very difficult for them to eat.

The cats will ONLY eat these if they are very very hungry. If I put down anything else, they will ignore the Boost Bites. I also have barn cats that hunt pretty much everything so I feed them a cheap cat food. I know they are getting tons of healthy nutrition in all the rodents, insects, birds, amphibians & grasses they can get their little paws on. However they do enjoy their junk kibble. Seeing how these Raw Boost Bites were an epic fail for the indoor cats, I tried it on the barn cats. They were a tad more enthusiastic although they appreciated having the biscuits broken into bits too despite their bone crunching swallowing rodents whole abilities. They struggled with the bites just as much as the indoor kitties.

The bites seem more suitable for a dog. Dogs aren’t known to do a lot of chewing & are not usually as fussy as a cat. I doubt a spongy dry biscuit would matter to an animal that tends to wolf things down within a gulp or two.

Even though this is a product I’m not likely to buy in the future, I do not feel it deserves less than 3 stars when I think of all the disgusting garbage that is on store shelves for us to buy & poison our pets with.

Ingredients as per the box:
Chicken, Turkey, Turkey Liver, Turkey Heart, Pumpkin seeds, Apples, Carrots, Ground Chicken Bone, Butternut Squash, Ground Flax seeds, Montomrillonite Clay, Broccoli, Lettuce, Spinach, Dried Kelp, Apple Cider Vinegar, Parsley, Honey, Salmon Oil, Olive Oil, Mixed Tocopherols (note: probable GMO ingredient)with Citric Acid (a natural preservative), Rosemary, Blueberries, Alfalfa Sprouts, Persimmons, Inulin (note: this is being promoted as a prebiotic for fiber & digestive health. There is evidence that inulin may not be safe for the digestive system. It’s safety is questionable. I avoid it.), Sage, Clove.

DelenaWasola, MO

Maggie Sez “More!”

Maggie went nuts over these Instinct Raw Boost Bites, and she is a very finicky cat. Liddy was mildly interested, with a nibble here and a nibble there, and Frankie is just peculiar; she will only eat her dull kibble food. The list of ingredients on the box of these freeze dried treats looks mighty fine, with everything from chicken to ground flaxseeds and broccoli. Each treat is a 1 ½ inch round, with the slight consistency and look of a shortbread cookie, and has a fairly decent smell for the human nose. You can easily break them into 4 or more pieces for your cat.

These round treats are for both dogs and cats, and are estimated as 1 or 2 for every 20 lbs. of weight. At the rate Maggie would like to eat these, she’d have to let out the buttons in her fur jacket. It’s nice though that I’ve found something she likes, and that it’s such a healthy treat. Thank you Nature’s Variety for making a treat made of good, natural food for our fussy fur friends. Packaging is good, with a clear resealable bag inside the cardboard display box.

LenaShort Creek, OH

Two out of three cats say NO.

Was it the sound of the plastic bag or the smell? Anyway, two of my cats came running when I opened the package. These things are WAY too big for cats, so I broke off pieces for each of them. The girl ate a piece after much pawing, but would not eat a second small piece. The boy sniffed and sniffed and pawed and pawed, but wouldn’t eat a bit, and both of them left. Then our third cat walked in, obviously intrigued by the smell. He ate the others’ leftovers and looked around for more. So, I guess that’s about a 33 percent acceptance rate.

Besides being way too big for cats, these things look… weird is the nicest word I can think of. They look like hairballs that have been compressed into cookie shapes. They even have weird hair-like things sticking out of them.

The ingredients include pumpkin seeds, apples, carrots, squash, flax seeds, broccoli, and more plant products. Cats eat meat. And I really have to wonder what function another ingredient, “Montmorillonite Clay” (a.k.a. Fullers Earth) serves.

These are sized for a medium to large dog (following the directions, an average cat should get less than half a “cookie” per day–if they even want one), and it seems to me the ingredients are more suited for dogs as well…if you are OK with the clay.

MertieLabelle, FL


My dauchshunds adore this. I break it in quarters and they devour the pieces. The cats lick it but seem to have trouble eating the shards. The smell isn’t strong so it would be easy to keep some in your pocket for walks and training.
EthanBristol, GA


I don’t really know what to make of these treats. I was first drawn to them because of the claim they were for both cats and dogs and since it is something of an extra special treat it’s nice to have something the whole family can enjoy. But I was not impressed on any level. Lets be honest, we all by these over priced pet treats for ourselves and not the pets. If you honestly wanted to make your pet ecstatic you would go to the butcher shop, get tub of chicken livers or giblets, cook them up and have very happy pets. For me this product is outrageously expensive, has an offensive smell and a texture of sawdust.

The makers are trying to draw you in with this idea of it being “Raw” but do you want to feed a pet, or better yet even handle a product where the main ingredient is chicken if it actually is raw? Though it doesn’t say so on the package I don’t think this item is actually freeze dried raw meat, but instead is supposed to appeal to the human’s desire to feed their pet something that’s healthy, i.e. raw diet for dogs. But I see nothing in this item to make it any healthier than many other pet treats that are much cheaper in price. I was also a little shocked at some of the health claims made on the package too. Apparently, “Freedom from allergies, improved skin & coat, weight loss, reduced incidents of ear infections and healthier teeth & gums are just a handful of the amazing pet transformations that Nature’s Variety customers experienced.” I have to call B.S. on that claim.

The only real positive thing I can say about this product is that on one cat loved it. My dog and other cat ate it, but weren’t crazy about it.

2 stars.

EvieRedmon, IL

Tasty but expensive freeze dried pet treats

My dog is a 62lb English Bulldog/German Shepherd mix that repeatedly suffers from allergies, especially food allergies. He can also be a bit of a picky eater when it comes to his treats so finding the right mix can often be difficult. I always have reservations about trying new treats as a large majority of popular dog treats today are filled with terrible ingredients not to mention carrying a high price tag. I’m always willing to try a new treats so here are my thoughts on Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost Bites Freeze-Dried Chicken Treats;


+ High in protein, 40%.

+ Minimally processed and freeze dried raw ingredients.

+ Dog loved them.


– Expensive. $10 for four ounces is a lot.

– High in fat, 34%.

– Messy and crumbly texture.

My dog really enjoyed Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost Bites Freeze-Dried Chicken Treats. Despite being extremely high in fat content the freeze dried raw ingredients are quite healthy compared to many of treats on the market. Unfortunately, the high price tag on these treats would make me hesitant about purchasing them on a regular basis.

LuluVenturia, ND

My Cat and I Share a RAW FOOD Diet

NATURE’S VARIETY INSTINCT RAW BOOST BITES FREEZE-DRIED TREATS (aka “Boost Bites”) provides a little treat for my cat, that isnt the JUNK FOOD normally found in name brand cat treats. The Friskies cat treats contain Brewers Rice, chicken meal, corn meal, animal fat, animal liver, malt, artificial flavors, brewers yeast, and a chemistry lab of various preservatives, and artificial colors.

Compare that to the RAW ingrediants of BOOST BITES: Chicken, Turkey, Turkey liver and heart, Pumpkin Seeds, Apples, Carrots, ground chicken bone, butternut squash, ground flaxseed, clay (for natural vitamins), broccoli, lettuce, spinach, kelp, vinegar, parsley, honey, salmon oil, olive oil, Vitamin E, Rosemary, blueberries, Alfalfa sprouts, permissons, sage, and clove.

The BOOST BITES are a RAW FOOD. For years I’ve been eating a raw food diet for dinner, consisting of MUESLI. Muesli was invented by a Swiss doctor, consisting of various raw grains, dried fruit, and unbaked seeds and nuts, soaked in soy milk. The concept behind raw foods, is that cooking destroys the enzymes in food, as well as many vitamins, which our body requires. If I’m going to eat a raw diet for my health, I might as well share that benefit with my cat. Our pets arent that different than us, and i’m NOT anthopomorphizing. They require these raw enzymes just like we do, and our pets are healthier with them. If I didnt believe in the health benefits of raw food, I wouldnt spend the extra money for Muesli.

Needless to say, a raw food diet means nothing to my cat. He eats Boost Bites cos he thinks they taste great. In fact, I gave him a taste test, placing a bit of BOOST BITES, next to his Friskies treats. He goobled down the Boost Bites, and left the Friskies Treats lay there untouched. (Tho he ate those too, when he figured out he wasnt getting more Boost Bites.)These cost a bit more than the treats from the grocery store, but they are his vitamin suppliment. Along with the EFA fish oil capsels I squeeze on his food, my cat’s recieving an excellent diet. His digestion is good, and his coat doesnt flake off all this excessive dander, that used to cause him to scratch himself raw. A healthy cat is a happy cat. And a happy cat, is a happy cat owner.

RoryPorterfield, WI

Three cats said Neooooooow

I sure liked the ingredients, the description and even the smell of these treats. But my three cats weren’t even intrigued enough to taste them, so regretfully they have given these treats one star. The treats are really large and probably more suitable for a dog. Of course, I broke the treats up into manageable sizes for cats, still no luck. Well, cats are known to be finicky and mine are no exception. One day they love something and the next day they could not care less. I will give the remainder of these treats to my daughter who has three dogs and will update my review if, in fact, they shed a different light on Raw Boost Bites.
KermitZachow, WI

A big hit with my two 3-year old felines. And a Google check okays its fat content

Being totally clueless about minimum recommended content of protein, fat and fiber in feline diets, and considerably worried about the healthfulness of this product after reading another Amazon reviewer’s warning of what he found to be the way-too-high fat content of these treats–the label says “crude fat (min.) 34.0%”–, I went online and found a link to a National Research Council site titled “Your Cat’s Nutritional Needs: A Science Based Guide for Pet Owners” which appears to be the work of a cadre of science professors from about a dozen universities. They say:

“The maximum amount of fat in the cat’s diet can be reasonably high without any
known adverse effects. In many cat foods, 50% or more of the energy comes from
fat. Studies indicate that cat foods containing even higher amounts of fat are safe.
At a minimum, cat foods should have a fat content of about 9% of dry matter.”

Which is a relief, considering how much my two three-year-old cats, Purrcilla and B.J. Honeycatt, seem to love this stuff.

I think this is the first pet treat I’ve ever seen that is labeled as being for both dogs and cats. The size of these dry treats–there are about a dozen and a half of them in this 4 oz. bag-inside-a-box, each about the size of a half inch high stack of silver dollars–is more dog friendly than cat friendly, but the discs break in two easily; Once a day I crumble and split half a disc between their two bowls as a topper for their wet food…or sometimes instead, use it as a bedtime treat. So for two cats I estimate getting about a month’s worth out of this package.

I’ve bookmarked the site mentioned above for future reference (too bad Amazon doesn’t allow us to link to outside sites in our reviews).

ShavondaCrescent City, CA

“Your’re trying to poison me, I just KNOW it”

My Australian shepherd (AKA “garbage-gut”) would kill for these. On the other hand she would kill for a chicken strip or a bite of buttered toast so I don’t know if you should depend on her for a review. My ultra-suspicious , paranoid cat (who has NEVER eaten a treat) sucked these right down when I crumbled them by her food. ….”I just KNOW you’re trying to poison me, you old bat.”…. They have excellent ingredients, no grains or gluten.

I’m not sure if it’s fair to take off a star for price. I try to get the best food for my pets (I pay $50 for a bag of blue buffalo for the dog) but ,to be honest ,I don’t think I could justify over $40 for a pound of treats, good tasting and healthy or not.If YOU can these would be a good choice.

LennieHackleburg, AL

Dog Liked It

What can I say? The dog liked it – I certainly didn’t taste it. He didn’t gobble it down at first since it was something new so let me describe it….

I handed it to him and, after a few cautious and tentative sniffs he took it from my hand and took it over to his favorite spot. He set it on the ground, licked it a few times to roll it over and sniff the other side – this went on a couple of times and humorous to watch. From there, he was like a little kid and took a small sample bite to give it a try. After a few tentative chews and a reluctant swallow, he looked up to see if it was ok to proceed.

Proceed he did, as he crunched away at the remainder of the treat and, after a satisfactorily smack of the lips he ran over to beg for another (which he didn’t get). I do like the fact there is a lot of meat products vs. garbage in the Made in the USA treat!

EchoBartow, WV