Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Evanger's Breed Buzz: Rottweiler

Rottweilers benefit from premium nutrition like Evanger's
Often described as a calm, confident, and courageous dog, the Rottweiler breed is also known to be quite aloof around strangers, requiring proper introduction and time to build friendships. But as part of the family, Rotties love their people. In fact, they often behave in a clownish manner toward family and friends, while also being protective of their territory.

Sensible and steadfast, the Rottweiler breed tends to respond quietly and with a wait-and-see attitude toward influences in the environment. They can be aggressive with other dogs of the same sex. While many co-exist peacefully with the family cat, others may be predatory. Most are inclined toward dominance and will test for position in the family pecking order. So owners must be assertive and know how to lead a strong-minded dog.

Overall, the Rottweiler is a splendid, capable companion in the right hands. Yet, without ongoing socialization, companionship, supervision and obedience training, he may be considered "too much dog" for many households. Therefore, obedience training and socializing are absolute musts.

Rottweilers must be thoroughly socialized at an early age so that their territorial instincts are controlled rather than indiscriminate. While they require minimal grooming maintenance, they must have daily exercise that can include interactive walking sessions, brisk walks, and regular opportunities to stretch out and run. Mental stimulation via agility training, advanced obedience and ball retrieval is also mandatory for these canines that have a natural instinct to herd.

The outer coat is black with well-defined mahogany or rust-colored markings that comprise less than ten perfect of the dog’s body color. All Rottweilers standard to AKC specifications have one mahogany dot above each eye on the inner brow ridge, on the cheeks and one strip on each side of the snout. Cheek markings never cross the nose bridge.

With a life span ranging from 8-12 years, the breed displays risks for long-term health. They’re more susceptible than others to become infected with parvovirus – which can be easily prevented by following a veterinarian's recommended vaccine protocol.

As with most large breeds, hip dysplasia is a common concern. Osteochondritis dissecans, a condition affecting the shoulder joints, can also be a problem due to the Rotteweiler’s rapid growth rate. Any reputable breeder will have elbows and hips of all breeding stock x-rayed and read by a specialist, and will provide the paperwork to prove it. They’ll also have certificates proving that their breeding animals do not have ectropion or entropion, and that they have full and complete dentition with a scissor bite.

Rottweilers are also prone to obesity when overfed and under exercised. Among the consequences of obesity are arthritis, breathing difficulties, diabetes, heart failure, reproductive problems, skin disease, reduced resistance to disease and overheating caused by the thick jacket of fat under the skin.

Because Rottweiler puppies grow very rapidly, it is important to provide premium dog nutrition from the start in order to support optimal bone and muscle development. Consider mixing Evanger’s Super Premium All Fresh Vegetarian Dinner mixed with Evanger’s Grain-Free Rabbit. Evanger’s vegetarian dog dinner of fresh potatoes, carrots, peas, blueberries, cranberries and brown rice provides a powerful punch of natural vitamins, while Evanger’s Grain-free Rabbit adds a pure source of protein that can be increased as the growth and activity level of your Rotteweiler increase. Your Rottweiler will love the flavor and you’ll have the confidence that you’re providing him with a nutritious diet that will help prolong the health of this wonderful breed.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Evanger's Tips: Exercising with Your Dog in the Heat

Evanger's Dog Food
Evanger's canned dog food provides added moisture to improve
hydrationduring hot summer months. Photo: Andrea Hobe
Your dog is itching to go outside for a walk. And while you’re ready for a little exercise as well, the thermostat is on the rise. While it’s not necessary to avoid outdoor activity entirely during the summer, it is a good idea to adjust the duration and intensity of exercise in accordance with the temperature.

As a rule, early mornings and evening hours are best suited for your outings – whether it's a walk, hike or even tossing the ball around in the yard. Did you know that pets with white-colored ears are more susceptible to skin cancer? Also, short-nosed breeds are prone to breathing difficulties since these pets have poor panting mechanisms. Keep dogs like Shih Tzus, Boxers, Lhasa Apsos, Pugs and Bulldogs away from the heat as much as possible.

Dogs don't sweat like people do. Most of their sweat glands are located around their paws. If Fido hasn’t stepped in his water bowl and you see wet footprints on your floor, it’s a red flag that your pooch is overheating and needs to be relocated to a cool spot. Also be sure to walk your dog on grass if possible since asphalt becomes very hot and can burn their delicate paws. Never leave the house without an adequate supply of water to prevent both of you from dehydrating.

Your best exercise bets are:

· Taking your dog to the lake, bay or ocean for a swim.

· Going on a hike or trail run early in the morning or late in the day.

· Taking shorter hikes, and find shaded trails and campsites.

Be sure to avoid:

· Having your dog run alongside your bicycle. If you do this from time to time, please don't do it in the summer.

· Hike trails that aren't shaded. Aside from the heat, you might come across rattlesnakes that love to bask in the hot sun.

Heat exhaustion is common in dogs. It can happen your own yard, or on a walk. Remember that dogs cool themselves by panting. When panting fails to reduce the body temperature, your pooch will develop heat stroke.

Signs include:

· Heavy Panting

· Rapid Breathing

· Salivation

· Fatigue

· Muscle Tremors

· Staggering

If you feel your dog is experiencing heat exhaustion, take him to a cool, shady place, and apply wet towels or cloths to help cool down his body temperature. Try to give him small amounts of water. Then call your vet immediately.

Your dog’s diet plays an important role in adequate hydration and muscle recovery after exercise. Feeding canned food provide high quality, easily digestible nutrients that help keep muscles and organs functioning in peak condition, while also keeping cells hydrated. For a boost in nutrition and hydration for your furry exercise partner, try Evanger’s Signature Stews made with USA farm grown meat and vegetables, slow cooked in a savory broth.

If you apply common sense and taking these exercising tips into account, you’ll be well on your way to keeping your pet happy, well exercised and healthy in the heat.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Evanger's Nutrition Tip: How Often Should I Feed My Cat?

Evanger's talks about the benefits of regulating how often your cat eats cat food
Photo: Ashley Lewis
When you’re researching how often to feed your cat, you’ll quickly learn that there’s no simple answer. Naturally, you’ll need to establish a diet and feeding pattern that’s both balanced and complete. As for frequency, factor in your cat’s age, health and preferences.

Feeding your feline too often or not often enough may impact her health. Your cat could either become obese or end up lacking the nutrition she needs to maintain proper growth. Always consult your veterinarian first to determine if your cat’s breed or health conditions require any specific feeding regimen.

The frequency you feed your cat may also depend on your schedule and your cat’s preferences. Regardless of your decision to feed your cat in the morning or in the evening, it’s best to establish a schedule and stick to it.

Consider these feeding options:

· Twice Daily Portion Control – It’s generally recommended that cats be fed twice daily by using a portion control method that divides the amount suggested on the food label into two meals that are provided 8-12 hours apart. This controls consumption and is a good route for weight control.

· Once Daily – Food is available at all times via a free-feeding route. Most nursing pets are fed this way. This method – which is especially good for nursing cats – is most appropriate when feeding dry food since it won’t spoil when left out.

· Timed Feeding – This method involves making a portion of food available for the pet to eat for a specified period of time. After that time, leftover food is removed.

Keep in mind that food labels that suggest certain portions per pound of body weight are extremely generalized. Each cat’s caloric needs will vary based on age, activity level, and various other individual factors. It’s important to keep an eye on your cat’s weight and adjust portions as needed.

Since kittens require more food per pound of body weight to support their growth, they should be fed more frequently throughout the day. Many vets agree that kittens up to six months of age should be fed three meals a day. From six months to maturity, most cats do fine when fed twice daily.

Naturally, there are exceptions depending on health issues that may require feeding more often. Among these are diabetes and hyperthyroidism. Consider consulting your veterinarian to determine any medically necessary feeding routines that may apply to your cat.

Feeding a high quality, meat based diet will help keep your cat feeling nutritionally satisfied. Try Evanger's USA Made Super Premium Seafood with Caviar Dinner for a cat food rich in high quality protein, vitamins, and nutrients that support optimal cat health.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Antioxidants for Pets and Evanger's Super Premium Dinners with Spinach and Kale Recipes

As pet owners become more educated about nutrition and diet, antioxidants are becoming a major focus of the pet industry. Understanding the importance of antioxidants allows retailers to assist consumers when selecting pet foods, treats and supplements.
Cells produce free radicals as a damaging byproduct of normal cell activity. Too many free radicals may be a cause of inflammation, aging and other degenerative conditions. Antioxidants can help reduce widespread cellular damage by stabilizing these free radicals.
The benefits of antioxidants are reported to be many. In young animals, antioxidants can help increase immune function, while in senior pets they can reduce the effects of aging. For animals suffering from cancer or other immune-compromising diseases, antioxidants can be particularly valuable and a critical part of their diet.
Synthetic antioxidants, such as butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT), as well as ethoxyquin (E324), are beneficial since they stay active in the body longer than many naturally occurring antioxidants. However, consumers should understand the benefits of antioxidants naturally found in whole foods. These include vitamins A, C and E, as well as specialized compounds known as carotenoids (including lutein and beta carotene).
Foods to Fight Free Radicals
The pet industry has responded to the growing demand for pet foods containing antioxidant-rich ingredients.
“Many of the brightly colored pigments in fruits and vegetables are actually antioxidants (carotenoids), which help to slow the signs of aging by cleaning up the products of cellular oxidation,” said Lucy Postins, founder of The Honest Kitchen. “Antioxidants can help to protect against cancer, heart problems and other age-related diseases. Green vegetables such as kale, collard greens, spinach and green beans, as well as herbs like parsley and basil, are rich in chlorophyll and contain the antioxidant lutein. Red and orange vegetables and fruits are rich in carotene. Lycopene provides the red pigment in cranberries, cherries and pomegranate.”
“Kale is a super antioxidant that contains essential vitamins, including beta carotene, calcium, vitamin K, vitamin C and lutein,” said Paula Savarese, president of Dogs Love Kale.
Evanger’s now adds farm-fresh spinach and kale to its Super Premium line, helping to raise the bar of quality nutrition for dogs.

“With high amounts of fiber, calcium, protein and Vitamins A, C and K, no other vegetable source can match these leafy-green wonders,”

said Holly Sher, owner and president of Evanger’s Dog and Cat Food Company.
“Spinach and kale have many antioxidant properties that guard against inflammatory diseases, cancer and some cardiovascular problems.”
While foods high in antioxidants have become relatively common, antioxidant-rich treats are also becoming a big part of the industry.
Zuke’s recently announced the launch of Skinny Bakes, treats with a small calorie count that are ideal for training. Available in 2-, 5-, 10- and 20-calorie varieties, Skinny Bakes are the perfect size and calorie count for dogs of any breed. In addition to being low-calorie, they feature the energizing goodness of coconut and the antioxidant benefits of pomegranate, a├žai or goji berries, depending on the treat.
Supplementing Health
Antioxidants are also common in supplements, such as those available from System Saver, a safe, natural alternative to treating horses and pets instead of using harsh anti-inflammatory medications that often have undesirable side effects.
“I felt it was necessary to develop an all-natural alternative to the existing medications like steroids, NSAIDs and other medications that have many side effects on our pets,” said Dr. Don Baker of Dr. Baker’s Canine System Saver. “The supplement was originally created to use for horses, and many of our clients started to request it for their dogs after seeing how well their horses were doing on it, [so] we reformulated it for dogs also. We only use natural ingredients in our products and it has proven successful in managing many ailments in our dogs. We love hearing from our clients about the success they have with the product with the respect to their animals’ health soundness and improved quality of life—that is what it is all about.”
BONEO Canine Clinical Formula has a maximum strength dose (200 mg) of Neo-PORTIN Complex, a patented protein-based technology that promotes bone turnover, enhances the absorption of nutrients and helps stimulate the production of chondrocytes (cartilage-producing cells). It also contains a suite of antioxidants for comprehensive health support.
River City Pet Products offers Rehydrate Canine Joint Support and Rehydrate Canine Antioxidant. According to its website, Rehydrate Joint Support is formulated with vitamins, antioxidants and resveratrol (a grape skin extract with anti-aging properties).
Senior Care from K-10+ is a water-soluble dog supplement that is specially formulated to support balanced nutrition and well-being in senior dogs with a rich combination of antioxidants, taurine and digestive enzymes.
Not Just for Dogs
Cats have not been left out of the supplement market and numerous high-quality antioxidant supplements are available.
Nu-Pet Feline Antioxidant contains powerful, “live” whole-food phytonutrients that support a feline’s health with all known enzymes, vitamins, minerals and trace elements. The taurine, cysteine and glutathione help heart health, build muscle and may help reduce cellular oxidative damage.
Even rabbits benefit from supplements like Daily Best for Rabbits Crisps from Pet Naturals of Vermont. According to its website, this complete multivitamin/mineral formula contains digestive enzymes and antioxidants that benefit rabbits of all sizes and breeds. Antiox-100 is standardized to yield 95 percent proanthocyanidins (PCOs) per capsule. PCOs are a special class of water-soluble bioflavonoids that act as potent antioxidants.
All species can benefit from antioxidants and stores should encourage pet owners to explore the best solution for their pets.


Monday, July 13, 2015

Evanger's Get Pet Healthy Question of the Week: Ferret Nutrition

Every week we have a contest on our Facebook page and invite Evanger's feeders to ask a nutrition question about their pet. Our certified On-Staff Nutritionist picks one question to weigh in on. Here are this week's question and answer.

Question from Sarah Crothers: 

I have two ferrets in addition to cats. Living in a small town, it is hard to find ferret food locally, so we must order online. However, sometimes we forget to reorder and they end up running out before the new food gets here.

Is it safe to feed ferrets the cat's food (which contains taurine) for the short-term until their food arrives? Thank you!


The nutritional needs of cats and ferrets differ, so it is always best to feed the foods that are specifically formulated for each. Cats and ferrets are both carnivorous (meat-eating) species, but ferrets are even more carnivorous than cats.

Ferrets are very sensitive to carbohydrate overload and often develop a type of diabetes when sugar or starch are over fed. Also, excess carbohydrates and not enough meat can actually reduce a ferret's lifespan. Domesticated ferrets live on average five to eight years, while wild ferrets eating a natural diet often live twelve years or longer.

Evanger's has responded to ferrets' unique dietary needs by formulating three high meat content
canned diets that are free of any added sugars. The foods also contain no added salt, colorants, or preservatives. Evanger's ferret foods are maintenance diets-- they contain the necessary vitamins and minerals for all ages-- and they can also be used to supplement other foods.

So try transitioning your ferret to our Beef Dinner, Turkey Dinner, and/or Chicken Dinner by first mixing them with your current food. When your ferret is accustomed to them, feed them full time or stock your pantry for those times when you run out of kibble.

Thanks for sharing your question! We host a #GetPetHealthy Question of the Week every Monday on our Facebook page. The winner receiving a FREE bag of JERKY TREATS, so check in on Mondays at

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

GMO Free Pet Food - Can It Last?

Pet food is all about choices nowadays. There is no shortage of different types of food for every pet, no matter the size, breed or allergies.
One such choice, non-GMO food is becoming more and more available to consumers and more people are starting to wonder if it is the right fit for their pets.
But what does GMO mean exactly?
“GMOs are organisms that have been manipulated or artificially changed in a laboratory setting, through the process of genetic engineering, for example to cause seeds and plants to have ‘built in’ pesticides or other unnatural properties,” said Lucy Postins, founder and CEO of The Honest Kitchen.
Concerned Consumers
Consumers become more and more aware of different pet food ingredients every day.
“I think people are becoming much more concerned about GMOs,” said Cheryl Phillips-Day, founder and CEO of, a website dedicated to helping provide consumers with healthy food choices. “The blanket for non-GMOs is that when you buy pet food, look for certified labels of organic from FDA entities. These will not have GMOs in it.”
One such entity, the Non-GMO Project, is specifically dedicated to offering North America third-party verification and labeling for non-GMO food and products. The organization was started by retailers to provide non-GMO choices.
The Non-GMO Project also works with food manufacturers, distributors, growers and seed suppliers to develop a standard for detection of GMOs and for the reduction of contamination risk of the non-GMO food supply with GMOs.
According to the website,, there are over 27,000 Non-GMO Project Verified products representing over $11 billion in annual sales.
The trend might be linked to the ongoing pet humanization that expands more and more every day.
“There is certainly a growing demand for GMO-free people foods and I think it is natural for it to translate into a demand for pet food in the same fashion,” said Michael Levy, president of Pet Food Express. “The demand is going more towards natural products and GMOs are seen as not natural.”
The Honest Kitchen takes advantage of this trend and does not use any GMO’s in their products with their entire line being Non-GMO Project certified.
“We require all vendors who supply us with ingredients to confirm in their annual Vendor Pledge that the ingredients we’re buying have not been genetically modified,” said Postins. “We’ve recently obtained Non-GMO Project Verification for five of our products and have plans to obtain verification for a number of additional products in the near future.”
Non-GMO is a relatively new concept. But there are benefits to feeding pets foods containing no GMOs.
“For retailers and pet parents alike, it is a reassurance that they are able to give and offer the highest quality product to their pets and pet loving customers, knowing that the manufacturer has already spent a lot of effort ensuring product quality is optimal,” said Lion Houkes, global marketing director at Paragon Pet Products, makers of the WHIMZEES treat line.
Extra Effort Required
The process for using non-GMO ingredients in food varies. It is not exactly easy.
“We obtain confirmation from our suppliers that the produce we’re purchasing are not genetically modified,” said Postins. “Meat-producing animals are not genetically modified or engineered but we’re working very closely with our meat suppliers to take gain visibility into the feed that those animals are fed when they’re being raised. Unfortunately, a large majority of the United States’ feed ingredients are now genetically modified. These ingredients, like corn, soy and beet pulp, form the majority of most farm animals’ diets and it’s become incredibly difficult to account for and verify every grain of feed that meat-producing animals consume during their lives, particularly because of cross contamination and genetic drift.”
But The Honest Kitchen works extremely hard to insure that the non-GMO label stays true.
“We’re working with our suppliers to take additional steps towards ensuring that even the diets of these meat producing animals is free of GMO’s too,” said Postins. “It’s a huge undertaking but one that we’re extremely passionate about.”
Consumers have choices with their treats as well. In fact, the entire WHIMZEES treat line by Paragon Pet Products is completely GMO-free.
“At WHIMZEES, we believe the best products are made using the best ingredients,” said Houkes. “For this reason, we source, manufacture and produce all products according to human grade standards and select only the highest quality vegetable-based ingredients. All vegetable-based ingredients in WHIMZEES are certified GMO-free.”
WHIMZEES also has strict guidelines for providing non-GMO treats.
“It starts with setting your own standards and principles,” said Houkes. “At WHIMZEES, we have set our standards incredibly high, selecting only the best and most trustworthy suppliers and highest quality of ingredients. All ingredients are certified, ensuring they align with our high quality standards. Any product with GMOs will not enter our premises.”
Evanger’s Dog and Cat Food Company is also Non-GMO. But recent transitions in labeling may cause it to hold off labeling it’s packaging with a GMO-free label.

“Evanger’s foods are GMO free, a point that used to be featured and stated on all our many lines of USA canned food’s labels,”

said Holly Sher, president and owner of the company. “However, very recently, regulations in regards to GMOs have been changing.”
The State of Minnesota recently sent Evanger’s several statements about commercial feed laws and new GMO labeling rules when it inquired further about the regulations and what could potentially be done about continuing to state and promote GMO free, specifically in regard to the Non-GMO Project.
“So although all Evanger’s foods are GMO free, with these recent changes, it appears that we can no longer tell the public that we are GMO-free on our packaging,” said Sher.
Rules are strict for non-GMO labeling.
According to the Minnesota Commercial Feed Law, Section 25.36(6)], If a firm wishes to pursue verification by the Non-GMO project there are steps that must be taken.
“We will accept the Non-GMO Project Verified logo on product labels after we receive a copy of written agreement between the firm and the Non-GMO project,” a representative of the state of Minnesota told Evanger’s. “The claim has to be substantiated for every ingredient it is referencing.”
The claim for non-GMO must be strict with wording.
According to the representative, the claim cannot be used in a way that implies the ingredient or product is any better/different than a product that does contain ingredients produced through genetic engineering as there currently is not any scientific documentation to back it up.
And what the words really mean can be pretty tricky.
“Saying ‘GMO-free’ or ‘No GMO’s’ is not accurate, unless there are Direct Fed Microbials (DFM) in the product, in most cases there will be no organisms in the product,” said the representative. “Firms should say what they mean; the ingredients were not derived/produced from genetically engineered organisms.”
Understanding and educating your staff about every single kind of pet food can really boost your bottom line. Customers are becoming more and more aware and the more you know about non-GMO food, the easier it is to sell. So now that you know, pay more attention to labels from manufacturers and know exactly what to look for when a consumer asks for non-GMO pet food.

This article was published by PetAge Magazine, and written by Rebekah Harrison.  You can find the original article here:

Monday, July 6, 2015

Evanger's Get Pet Healthy Question of the Week: Why Does My Dog Prefer Cat Food?

Every week we have a contest on our Facebook page, and invite Evanger's feeders to ask a nutrition question about their pet. Our certified On-Staff Nutritionist picks one question to weigh in on. Here are this week's question's and answer.

Question from Donna West:

My Jack Russell prefers to eat cat food over dog food, I know this is not good for her. Can you tell me how to break her into eating dog food?

I am really concerned.


Your Jack Russell needs dog food that is more flavorful and more nutrient dense-- and you've come to the right place!
Hand Packed Line 

Consider pairing the Evanger's Meat Lovers' Medley Grain-Free kibble with our canned Hand Packed Whole Chicken Thighs. Simply mix some of the chicken in with the kibble and pour a bit of the gravy over the top. Mmm, irresistible

Or try mixing in our Hand Packed Hunk of Beef with our Grain-Free Chicken with Pumpkin kibble.

Evanger's products are all made and sourced in the USA. Ingredients in the Evanger's canned foods are cooked in the can for maximum flavor, maximum scent, and maximum nutrient retention.

By the way, the occasional meal of Evanger's cat foods won't harm your dog, although it is best to feed maintenance diets that contain the vitamins and minerals that are approved for dogs.

Thanks for sharing your question! We host a #GetPetHeatlhy question of the week every Monday on our Facebook page. The winner receiving a FREE bag of JERKY TREATS, so check in on Mondays at