Saturday, November 6, 2010

Brillo And Gollum Seem To Like The Feline Greenies Oven Roasted Chicken, So Do I!

The Good: Generally good ingredients, Good dental benefits, My cats like them!
The Bad: A bit expensive for what one gets
The Basics: Good for my cats, Feline Greenies Oven Roasted Chicken in the 3 oz. package is a bit expensive for my tastes!

When I escaped working at Pet World (a terribly mismanaged pet store), I found myself very happy to have the time to write reviews of some of the products I experienced there or bought there for use at home with my cats and dog. When my wife started working at the same pet store, she brought home Senior Greenies for her dog (click here for that review). When I began working there, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that there were Feline Greenies and I decided to see if my boys, Brillo and Gollum, might enjoy these little cat treats as much as Mitzie (our dog) loves the canine Greenies.

Feline Greenies come in a variety of flavors and we picked up the Oven Roasted Chicken flavor because they were the only ones our store carried. In fact, had I known that they came in so many different flavors, odds are I would have picked up one of the fish flavors (my boys LOVE salmon!). Because they are advertised as “Dental Treats,” I was happy to pay a little bit more for these, at first. Unlike some of the other cat treats on the market now, these do not trade on being all natural or anything, so I was a little wary of that, but the moment I opened the bag for the first time, Gollum came running and what surprised me most was that Brillo, who has become quite sedentary of late, came running, too!

This is the first treat in a while both my cats have devoured enthusiastically with no reservations whatsoever. Instead, they crunch right down on them and they do seem to do all they promised to. A few years back, my cat, Brillo, had bad breath and I solved the problem by getting tartar control treats for him. Because I started Gollum young on tartar control treats, he never developed bad breath and the only treats my boys get are ones that have the health benefit of being tartar control. While the Feline Greenies do not make that claim, the fact that cats have to chew them supports the dental benefits claim on the package. For general dental health, Feline Greenies Oven Roasted Chicken cat treats are more than adequate. For roughly $4.00, being able to avoid a teeth cleaning for my cats that would cost hundreds of dollars seemed like a good idea to me!

After a few pouches of Feline Greenies, the Feline Greenies treats seem to be working well as a preventative measure by effectively keeping tartar from building up on my cats' teeth, at least as effectively as other treats which do have tartar control claims. Feline Greenies cat treats are crunchy little treats that come in various flavors, including chicken, salmon and tuna. The Oven Roasted Chicken flavored treats are shaped like tiny fish or cartoon drumsticks (it’s not quite clear, though they do resemble fish more than anything else) and are three-eighths inches wide. Each of these treats is green and slightly textured, though I’ve seen other treats with more surface texture in recent days. These appear quite manufactured-looking. Only about 1/8" thick, these treats resemble dry cat food.

Feline Greenies treats have become a cat treat I am happy to give Brillo and Gollum because they work, but they are expensive. In fact, these are very expensive, at least through the store we purchased them through. For the price of a small bag (4.2 lbs.) of cat food ($2.99), I can’t even get a single 3 oz. package of Feline Greenies treats, unless they go on sale! This is not an extraordinary value at all. As such, I ended up downrating in the 3 oz. size because of the expense.

Because my older cat is finicky about his food - he needs urinary tract health formula food - the Feline Greenies treats offer my cats an option for keeping their teeth healthy that I would not otherwise have (there are tartar control cat foods, but not yet one that is both urinary tract and tartar control that I've found). Pounce marketed itself as a champion of classic conditioning, urging pet owners who use Pounce to shake the container to bring cats to the owner for their treats, so my cats know to come whenever I open a bag of the Feline Greenies. They recognize the sound of the stiff plastic crinkle bag and my cats came running for the Oven Roasted Chicken flavor they same way they did for Pounce's tartar control treats.

Feline Greenies treats are available only in the stiff-plastic pouches which make it easy to tell if they have been tampered with. Each plastic pouch is vacuum sealed and has a brown plastic bag which is very recognizable and protects the treats inside well. The stiff plastic creates a loud, recognizable crinkling sound that brings cats to it right away (I still call out to my cats with the question "Who wants treats?" whenever dispensing this as a treat). Sadly, there are other food products (like vacuum-sealed dinners) that come in similar pouches and when opening them, one's cats are likely to descend, eager for a treat. Like many other cat treat manufacturers, Feline Greenies took a lesson from the makers of Pounce when making the Feline Greenies.

The truth is, though, I'm a somewhat lazy cat owner. My cats keep me moving around to play fetch and keep the litter box immaculately cleaned, I'm often too busy (or forgetful) to give them treats every day like they insist they deserve. What I've begun to do is mix the treats in with the catfood, so the cats get the treats like Lucky Charms marshmallows in their dinner. The package makes no recommendations for how many treats a cat gets each day, though it does warn that Feline Greenies are intended as supplemental food, as opposed to actual meals for cats. So, my mixing them into the regular cat food seems like a good idea and my boys get five to ten treats that way each day (though the suggested serving is something ridiculous like 16 – 20 pieces for cats the size of my boys!).

Mixing the treats into the food makes a package last about a week with my cats. I tend to keep one pouch for use as treats (they get treat time an average of once every other day) and I mix the rest into their food when I jar it up. I jar all of my cat food up to keep the potential mouse population at bay (mice like Feline Greenies treats as well, I've discovered, and they can easily chew through the stiff plastic pouch). These treats have a great shelf life in comparison to other cat treats. The package which my partner picked up in October has a January 2011 expiration date, which seems to make sense given the extensive preservatives in the treats.

I refuse to taste sample this treat myself to determine whether or not they taste like what they are supposed to (then again, it has been years since I've seen a dentist . . .). My cats like them, they keep coming back for them (and the big one is usually quite lazy) and they have lived up to the promise to maintain (or restore) my cat's dental health, but they illustrate no preference for the Oven Roasted Chicken flavor versus other dental health cat treats. They both chose these over Pounce, though, the last time I gave them a choice.

The Oven Roasted Chicken flavored Feline Greenies are made up primarily of chicken meal, ground brewers rice and ground wheat before the ingredient list turns into the many preservatives. There do not appear to be any vegetables in Feline Greenies. The Oven Roasted Chicken flavored treats contain at least 35% crude protein, 16% crude fat and less than 5% crude fiber and trace amounts of taurine. There is no more than 11% moisture in these treats, which is probably why they keep so well. These are not a bad food for my cats.

All in all, the Oven Roasted Chicken flavored cat treats from Feline Greenies are a fair staple treat and while my cats like them, they are more of a treat for my boys when I can afford them. Not just daily use!

For other cat products, please check out my reviews of:
Mews Ments Shimmer Krinkle Mouse
Spotnips Crazy Cluster Glow In The Dark
Lipiderm Liquid Catnip


For other pet product reviews, please visit my index page by clicking here!

© 2010, 2009 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.

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