Monday, April 11, 2011

With Some Antipathy, My Cats Let Me Know Cosmic Cat Seafood Gumbo Flavor Is Average.

The Good: Doesn't appear to be anything bad in them, My cats will eat them.
The Bad: Cats show no real love of this treat, No dental benefits, Relatively expensive.
The Basics: Cosmic Cats Treats might have an irresistible flavor, but with Seafood Gumbo being our second try with the company, we haven't found it yet!

While my wife was working at a pet store, it seemed like every day she came home with something new for our dog or cats. She came bearing a pretty huge collection of Cosmic Cat Treats and after our poor experience with the first flavor (let me clarify, that was my cats who had the poor experience with them, I refuse to do a taste test on these!), we have been slowly giving my boys the other treats. Given how little they liked the first flavor, I was surprised when they were more neutral to the second flavor we tried with them, which was the Seafood Gumbo flavored treats.

The Cosmic Cat Treats line of cat treats are new to my wife, myself and our cats and when we cautiously opened the bag of Seafood Gumbo flavored treats, out little one, Gollum, scarfed them down. Brillo ate them more cautiously and neither spit them up. Still, they do not go wild for them the way we hoped they might. Given that both cats are somewhat neutral to the treats and they are not tartar control, it became quite easy to go with the "not recommend."

Both Brillo and Gollum exhibited some hesitation when I broke out the bag of Seafood Gumbo treats. The last cat treat we gave the cats came in a virtually identical bag, so perhaps they remembered that. When I opened the bag, though, and set two piles of five treats each before Brillo and Gollum, they sniffed around before tentatively eating the treats. Since then, Gollum comes when I shake the bag, but Brillo does not. Both Brillo and Gollum eat the Seafood Gumbo flavor treats, but neither comes running when they smell them. Conversely, our geriatric cocker spaniel, Mitzie, will not eat them up if they are on the floor when she is around. It is worth noting that my cats eat these with about the same enthusiasm with which they eat catfood and they do exhibit a preference for the Seafood Gumbo Cosmic Cat Treats when they are set next to the Shrimp & Lobster flavored treats. Still, when I have had tartar control treats from other brands on the floor for them, the cats still go for those.

Cosmic Cat Treats come in a variety of flavors and we picked up the Seafood Gumbo flavor because these supposedly addictive treats were being given away at my partner's workplace. These treats trade on the gimmick that they contain real fresh catnip and this is supposed to make them irresistible to cats. Given how they were being clearanced at my wife's pet store and my own cats' more placid reaction to these, I suspect that the gimmick is just that. Compared to the Pounce or Tempting Tidbits cat treats my cats enjoy, both Brillo and Gollum illustrate an indifference to the Cosmic Cat Treats and given how Gollum drinks out of the toilet, I don't think it is because he is suddenly gun-shy about what he puts in his mouth!

In the past, 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. For that purpose, Cosmic Cat Treats Seafood Gumbo flavored cat treats are woefully inadequate. For roughly $2.29 for the three ounce package, the lack of dental health benefits to these treats is depressing. More expensive than other treats and not providing tartar control is a real downer.

After only a single pouch of Seafood Gumbo Cosmic Cat Treats, I can say with some authority that the Cosmic Cat Treats treats have no beneficial effect on the cats' breath. The treats themselves smell like tomato and when the cats have consumed them (but before they eat any harder kibble) their breath smells like the treats. There are worse scents for cat breath than tomato, but still, if I am giving my cats treats, I think I would like them to have fresh breath, as opposed to tomato breath.

The Seafood Gumbo flavored treats are shaped like little wedges (pie piece shaped) and are a half inch in long at their widest points. Each of these treats is red, soft and smooth, though they have little spots, like spices in them. A full 3/8" thick, these treats look like no other treat I've seen and they seem to offer no dental benefits through their shape. To be fair, they do smell like a seafood gumbo, at least in that they smell like a somewhat off tomato product.

These treats are a bit more pricey than both other cat treats and dry catfood. For the price of a small bag (4.2 lbs.) of cat food ($2.99), I can only get a single package of Cosmic Cat Treats treats at full price. This is not an extraordinary value. If they did anything for my cat's health or even happiness, they would be worth it but considering how they only wander toward them and have no dental benefit, this is an overpriced "treat."

Cosmic Cat Treats treats are available 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 bright blue 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. Cosmic Cat took a lesson from the makers of Pounce when making the Cosmic Cat Treats.

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 Cosmic Cat treats 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.

Mixing the treats into the food makes a package last about two weeks 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. These treats have a very limited shelf life in comparison to other cat treats. The package which my wife picked up in early August (2009) had a September, 2009 expiration date, which seems to make good on the claim that the catnip inside is fresh.

I refuse to taste sample this treat myself to determine whether or not they taste like what they are supposed to, but my cats who like pretty much anything from the sea seem to like the Seafood Gumbo flavor just fine.

The Seafood Gumbo flavored Cosmic Cat Treats are made up primarily of soy flour, wheat flour and water before the ingredient list turns to the catnip or actual fishy products. The Seafood Gumbo flavored treats contain 19% crude protein, 9% crude fat and 1.5% crude fiber, with 34% moisture. These are not a bad food for my cats, especially compared to other cat treats.

The problem is, there's nothing terribly good either and my cats seem to enjoy less expensive treats that actually work on their dental health by having tartar control properties as opposed to these. For the price, the neutral way which my cats approach them make them easy to pass by.

For other Cosmic Catnip cat treat reviews, please check out my takes on:
Cosmic Catnip Clam Chowder
Cosmic Catnip Turkey
Cosmic Catnip Shrimp And Lobster


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

© 2011, 2009 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.

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