- Q: Which of your formulas would you recommend for my pet?
A: We do not formulate for breed, size or disease specifics. We recommend rotating each of our formulas every 2-3 months to allow your pet's system to absorb the nutritional benefits of all the different ingredients. All of our formulas are different enough in composition to provide a varied diet with high levels of nutrition, and they are formulated for all life stages. Feeding the same food for extended periods may allow for some animals to develop allergies to some foods.
- Q: I have an animal with some health issues. Which formula do you recommend?
A: Please consult your veterinarian directly for a diagnosis and advice on how best to address any health concerns. Our formulas are not designed to cure any illness, disease or ailment. For specific preferences, please read each of our formulas' descriptions listed on our "Pet Foods" page to determine which of our formulas best suits your pet's needs or which ingredients you may want your pet to avoid.
- Q: I am presently feeding a protein/fat level of about 24/14 with claims of 60% animal meals by weight. This is higher than Timberwolf Organics, which is 50% animal meals. Isn't my present formula better for my dogs because it is higher in protein and fat?
A: This is impossible for a number of reasons: 1. When we first began formulating our own pet foods, we started by including 54% animal meals by weight. However, the decreased volume of starch caused the kibble to crumble and fall apart. Through trial and error, we slowly lowered the meat meal levels to 47%, at which point the kibble maintained its form. (This was also found to increase the digestibility.) Therefore, a formula with 60% animal meals could not maintain its kibble form. 2. A formula that might contain 60% animal meals would dictate the calcium levels be above the maximum AAFCO limit of 2.5%. Animal meals are 3-8% calcium; therefore, 60% would dictate a minimum of 1.8% (highly unlikely at 60% animal meals) in addition to calcium levels that are also added to the mineral mix and naturally occurring in other ingredients. Timberwolf Organics formulas contain only very low ash, high protein animal meals. We do not add any calcium to our mineral mix, yet still average 1.5-2.0% calcium depending upon the formula. All of our animal meals are 69-71% protein and are very expensive due to our exacting criteria of using only the highest quality ingredients. Even if this company is using mediocre animal meals at an average of 60% protein (the lower the protein, the higher the ash in animal meals), the overall protein level would be at least 36% (60% animal meals x 40lbs = 24lbs, x 60% protein of meal = 14.4lbs of protein/40lb = 36% protein) plus 1-3% from the other ingredients = 38% protein. Our Serengeti Felid Formula and Wild & Natural Canid Formula contain these levels of proteins, and it is very difficult (and expensive) to achieve while keeping the ash levels down. We would hazard a guess that at some point, a customer asked this company what the level of animal meals used were as a percentage of weight. The company officials asked their nutritionist what the percentage of animal protein was. The nutritionist most likely replied that the percentage of protein from animal sources (a common term in the industry) was 60%, and the execs misunderstood and then made the claim that the level of animal meals in their formula was indeed 60%. In comparison, most of our formulas have over 91% of the protein animal sourced.
- Q: What steps are you taking to ensure that your meat sources and pet foods remain safe from Mad Cow or BSE?
A: In January of 2002, our facility discontinued the use of any beef, beef byproducts and beef fats in all formulations produced at the plant. The meat proteins in our formulas are acquired from species-specific processing plants. These species are: 1. Chicken. 2. Turkey. 3. Lamb from New Zealand 4. Various Fish. 5. Pork. 6. Chicken Fats. 7. Fish Oils. Our facility is USDA inspected and is one of the very few that is APHIS (Agricultural Plant Health Inspection Service) certified or the newer, tougher Category III level certified. APHIS assists manufacturing plants in meeting all certification requirements for export--for example, to the EC, which is extremely difficult to export to due to their stringent requirements of certification of all ingredients. Therefore, there is no possibility of any beef tissue or beef fats included, by design or by contamination, in any products manufactured by our pet food plant.
- Q: What quality precautions do you take to safeguard your foods from contamination?
A: Before any product enters our facility, before any truck is unloaded, an inspection is made and random samples are taken. These samples are then taken to the facility's laboratory for screening, testing and analysis. The range of tests also includes proximate, aflatoxins, vomitoxins, peroxide values, microbial, and temperature, among others. Our facility also undergoes regular inspections by the USDA and APHIS. The plant is a member of the Pet Food Institute, and as such, is continuously updated on all regulation changes. The plant is also notified immediately of any outbreaks that would affect production so that any precautions or stoppages can be made. All poultry based meals and frozen poultry are supplied and received only from facilities that process poultry and no other meats. These facilities are USDA/APHIS approved facilities. The poultry included in our formulas are all hormone free and steroid free, and contain human grade chicken fed on real feed with no waste included. Fish oils are received only from suppliers that are USDA/APHIS/NMFS approved. Our fish oils are naturally preserved by the supplier. Our facilities have built a close relationship with all of their suppliers, conducting long-term research and development to be at the top of their profession and the industry. Between them, they have years of experience with which they are able to bring to the table the finest in companion animal food production.
- Q: I have read on the Internet that a diet should contain higher levels of the omega-3 essential fatty acids than the levels of the omega-6 essential fatty acids. Is this true?
A: No. Nothing could be farther from the truth! The optimum ratio should be 3-5:1 (3-5 parts to 1 part) omega-6 to omega-3 essential fatty acids (the lower figure is better). Up to 7-8:1 is acceptable. If the ratio is too low or if the level of omega-3 is greater than the levels of omega-6, then over time there will become an apparent deficiency of omega-6 no matter how much of it is supplied in the diet. Symptoms include dry, brittle coat, flaky skin, dermatitis, etc. Some insist that because they have read that "wild animals have more omega-3s," that the omega-3s should be at a higher level than the omega-6s. What they are misunderstanding, however, is that wild animals naturally have higher levels of omega-3s than domesticated animals, not that wild animals have higher levels of omega-3s than omega-6s. For example, wild caribou have as a percentage of total fat 16% omega-6 essential fatty acids (versus 2% for domestic cattle) and 5% omega-3 essential fatty acids (versus 0.7% for domestic cattle). Most land animals have higher levels of omega-6s than omega-3s (mare's milk is an exception with 38% omega-3s as a percentage of total fat). Deep-water fishes (mackerel, sardines, salmon, tuna, anchovies, etc) have oils that are high in omega-3s. All of our foods have a ratio of about 4.5-5:1 omega-6 to omega-3, compared to the average of 10-20:1. To bring the omega-3s up to a more optimum 3:1 ratio, we recommend adding our pure Wild Salmon Oil on your pet's food. Timberwolf Organics has developed a proprietary natural preservative made with a blend of herbal extracts that allows us to increase (omega-3s go rancid very quickly and must be used cautiously in pet food formulas) the level of omega-3s in our formulas. Timberwolf Organics Black Forest formula has the highest ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 that we know of (1:2) and 9% omega-3s as a percentage of total fat.
- Q: Can omega-3s in the diet help my dog stop itching and scratching?
A: A lot has been made recently of omega-3 fatty acids or alpha linolenic acid in the treatment of inflammatory dermatoses or atopic dermatitis and the appropriate balance of omega-3s with omega-6 fatty acids. However, not much is known about the underlying mechanisms by the average layperson or indeed the industry as a whole. What actually happens is that when a cellular injury occurs, the cell membranes release their fatty acids and are then metabolized into substances known as eicosanoids, which are compounds such as prostaglandins, leukotrienes, thromboxanes, etc. ("eico" is Greek for 20, indicating that they are a metabolite of 20 carbon atom fatty acids such as arachidonic acid and eicosapentanoic acid). First, omega-6 fatty acids (linoleic acid) are metabolized into gamma-linolenic acid by the enzyme delta-6-desaturase, then into di-homo gamma-linolenic acid by the enzyme elongase, then finally into arachidonic acid by the enzyme delta 5-desaturase. Omega-3 fatty acids (alpha linolenic acid) are also first metabolized into stearidonic acid by the enzyme delta-6-desaturase, then into eicosatetraenoic acid by the enzyme elongase, and finally into eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) by the enzyme delta-5-desaturase. Eicosanoids produced from arachidonic acid such as leukotriene B4 are more inflammatory than eicosanoids produced from eicosapentanoic acid such as leukotriene B5. EPA and arachidonic acid compete for the same enzymes, however, and when the level of EPA is increased, the production of the more inflammatory B4 eicosanoids is decreased and the production of less inflammatory B5 eicosanoids is increased. However, some dogs and most cats have a deficiency of delta-6-desaturase enzyme activity in their skin, which is why the addition of supplements high in omega-3s do not necessarily help. For cats and some dogs, the addition of supplements with EPA are indicated. This is why we use wild salmon oil in our Wild Salmon Oil(tm) Supplement. It supplies DHA and EPA directly without the need for conversion as well as other important factors.
- Q: I have heard on the Internet that high protein foods can cause hip dysplasia. Is this true?
A: Well, if you heard it on the internet it must be true! High protein foods do not cause hip and growth problems. The most likely cause for hip dysplasia is a random gene expressing the trait, or bad breeding practices. That misconception came from an American study performed in the '60s that claimed a relationship between high caloric intake and hip dysplasia. A subsequent Swedish study in the '70s found that the American study was flawed. Three more studies since then have found no link between caloric intake and dysplasia. One of these studies went so far as to induce premature births and a 50% restriction diet, and still found no reduction in the percentage of mature dogs with hip dysplasia. It's probably safe to say that there are not any wolves that say, "Okay Junior, you better watch your protein intake so that you don't develop hip dysplasia!" If there is a dietary cause to growth problems, it is most likely pet foods that do not supply enough of the building blocks and nutrients required by a growing animal. A breeder of Irish Wolfhounds and longtime customer of our formulas says Timberwolf Organics is the ONLY food he has ever fed where he had NO incidents of the growth disease Pano. There are only three sources of calories: protein, fat and carbohydrates. If you limit protein and fat, then more carbohydrates supply calories instead. However, carbohydrates only supply energy (calories - growth) but no nutrients. The reason most dog food companies push low protein foods is because they are much cheaper to make. Foods labeled and marketed as senior or lite formulas are the cheapest to manufacture, and yet command a higher price and a higher profit margin attributed to their reputation in the consumer's mind. AAFCO guidelines for a puppy/nursing food dictate a minimum of 22% protein. This comes from research performed by the National Research Council that involved the use of beagles and purified amino acids. If the minimum required for puppies and nursing mothers is 22%, it should be prudent to use a somewhat higher percentage, just in case. If a dog does not receive enough protein in its diet, or if fat levels are high in relation to the level of protein, then the canine's system will go into a negative nitrogen balance in a short time. The higher the fat content of a food, the higher the level of protein is required. Another issue to be taken into consideration is that most protein sources are not as digestible as purified amino acids, and there are a lot of breeds that have higher protein requirements than beagles. Dogs that are stressed (which includes most dogs) or debilitated have higher protein requirements also. Incidentally, and noteworthy, there is no AAFCO or NRC maximum level for the percentage of protein for canines. If feeding dogs high protein foods, one would think that there would be a maximum allowed level? One of the first things your dog does after eating is to drink water. Because water is heavier than dog food, it may consume twice the amount of water by weight, thereby diluting the protein/fat percentages of the dog food.
- Q: Why does Timberwolf Organics use whole grains instead of flours?
A: Centuries ago, wheat was known as the "staff of life." Whole grains, which include the germ, bran, middling and endosperm, provide much more than just carbohydrates. They are an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, phtyonutrients, fiber and oils. Unfortunately, too many pet food companies use refined flours (white flour, white rice, corn meal, etc.), which are almost completely devoid of nutrients and essential fatty acids. The primary reason most companies use flours is because they are highly digestible. However, diets high in refined carbohydrates are treated as sugar by the dog's system. A recent study revealed that within two hours of ingesting a diet high in refined carbohydrates, blood glucose levels had increased to 50% above the base level. Within four hours, blood glucose had dropped to 50% below the base level. These wild swings in blood glucose can overtax the pancreas and possibly lead to hypoglycemia, diabetes or pancreatitis. Grains comprise only 25% of total weight in our formulas because of the high levels of meat proteins and fats. We feel it safe to say that there are not many wolves roaming in corn or wheat fields. Some other "natural foods" also use whole grains and spend a lot to advertise that fact. The drawback is that these formulas are comprised of a high percentage of grains, just as most commercial foods have a high percentage of flours. Whole grains, however, contain a high level of fiber and other components that are hard to digest, thereby causing large stool volume, problems maintaining weight, mediocre coat growth and other problems. We still feel that by using whole grains, which are freshly ground as soon as possible before extrusion in our formulas, we are providing salubrious benefits to your pet. However, because they comprise a small percentage of the total formula, you avoid adding the above mentioned problems into the bargain.
- Q: May we mix raw or cooked meat in with your kibble?
A: All of our formulas are nutritionally complete and balanced. We have added the option of feeding your own fresh meat protein sources to supplement any of our formulas, which will allow your pet further enzymatic activity and complement their innate proclivity for high protein and raw diets. If adding fresh meat to your pet's food, we recommend a mix of 10-20% raw or cooked meats and organs. Our Black Forest Canid Formula was designed to be mixed with meat and may be the most compatible to mixing. However, all of our formulas are relatively high in vitamins and minerals. Care should be taken when adding meat to some kibble. When adding meat, you are increasing phosphorous levels. Most dog foods are only 1.1-1.3% calcium, and their phosphorous levels are very close to that. It is possible you may accidentally add enough phosphorous to alter your calcium/phosphorous ratios. If adding fresh meats to your pet's diet, deduct 10-20% of Timberwolf Organics dry food formula and substitute with 10-20% fresh meats of your choice or other fresh proteins such as eggs.
- Q: I want to add some fresh meat to my pet's diet. Do I need to mix it in with the kibble?
A: This is not necessary. You should preferably feed the fresh meat separately. Your pet may eat the fresh meat first, but should soon go back and eat the dry food a little later when they realize the fresh meats are finished. Some pets may take a little time to get used to this but eventually get the idea. No kibble food, even Timberwolf Organics, can quite compete with the flavor of fresh foods or table scraps.
- Q: Can I feed my pet table scraps?
A: Most nutritionists and vets will tell you no. If you decide to feed your pet table scraps, please limit it to no more than 10% of their daily food intake.
- Q: Do I need to supplement any of the formulas with either of the fish oils?
A: You do not need to add anything to any of our formulas, as they are all nutritionally balanced and complete. However, these are wonderful supplements for the purpose of providing EPA and DHA, which are the most important omega-3 and -6 fatty acids. Scientific studies indicate that DHA is the building block of the brain, nerves and eyes, and so has a positive impact on mental and visual functions. It may even aid in the fight and lower the incidence of cancer. Research suggests that EPA benefits the heart and circulatory system and has natural anti-inflammatory properties for easing joint pain.
- Q: Why is your food extruded and not baked?
A: When we first decided to create our foods, we aspired to make a baked kibble, as we too had heard the marketing phrase "Slow oven-baked at low temperatures to retain more nutrients." What we found, however, was that a baked food is cooked at 425 degrees F for 45 minutes to convert the starches into dextrins. The low-temperature extrusion process we use utilizes steam and pressure to gelatinize the starches quickly at about 200-225 degrees F for 15 minutes or less. We decided that extrusion was the way to go to retain more nutrients.
- Q: Do you add taurine to your dog foods?
A: Yes, we add 0.15% 98% pure taurine to all of our formulas. Due to the higher levels of meat protein in all of our formulas, they contain levels of taurine higher than 0.15%. For example, Timberwolf Organics Southwest Chicken and Herbs formula contains 0.385% taurine.
- Q: Why do you use chicken fat in some of your formulas? Aren't some people allergic to chicken? Why not use canola oil?
A: What some people or some animals, for that matter, are really allergic to are the proteins - proteins called antigens. Oils do not contain antigens or proteins. So if someone is allergic to chicken or corn, for example, this is not a concern. They will not be allergic to the chicken fat, corn oil, or any other oil. Canola oil is among the least nutritionally valuable oils. Due to its bitter taste, it is highly refined and therefore has lost most of its vitamin and nutrient content. It is actually rapeseed oil and was once banned by the U.S. government due to concerns that it could damage heart tissue. However, after intense lobbying by the Canadian government and farmers, it was again allowed into the U.S. Rapeseed oil at the time sounded politically incorrect, and the name CAN(ada)O(i)LA was coined.
- Q: What are the different kcals of each of your formulas?
A: The kcalories of each of our formulas are listed on their respective description pages. Please click on any of our formulas for a full description and breakdown of ingredients and nutritional levels.
- Q: A lot of people are now feeding chicken's backs and necks. What is your position on this practice?
A: We do not recommend the feeding of chicken or turkey necks or backs unless possibly if included in the proper ratio as a part of the "whole animal." If you feed only the necks and backs, then over time you will induce an alkaline urine (especially if mixed with a grain-based kibble) and could perhaps cause an improper calcium/phosphorous ratio. This is probably contrary to what you have heard and read, but I have seen this several times. Please note that grains are alkaline, and meat and organs are acid. Dogs need a diet that has a slightly acidic pH. Should you wish to feed raw or BARF, we would recommend you feed as nature intended: the whole chicken with thighs, legs, breasts, backs, necks, hearts, livers, gizzards, lungs, giblets, etc. (Mother Wolf says to Baby Wolf, "Remember what I told you, Junior! Leave all of the nutritious organs and flesh, and eat only the backs and necks."), along with pulverized vegetable and kibble, or alone if temporary. If you are relying on your kibble to provide the vitamins/minerals, try not to go over 10-20%, as that may dilute your kibble's nutritional value. Otherwise, use a spreadsheet to enter the ingredients you are using and their nutritional profiles so that your pets are receiving the correct quota of amino acids, vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids and other nutrients. Alternatively, you might try a commercially prepared supplement that will provide the nutrients that your dog needs. Your canine and feline companions rely totally on you to provide a completely nutritious diet. Do not make the mistake of thinking that because you cook for yourself and your family that this is optimum.
- Q: Do you recommend feeding bones to my dog?
A: We must urge extreme caution whenever feeding bones. If you must feed bones, please do so only under supervision and only uncooked bones--no hard bones, as this will cause wearing of the canids. Preferably you should only give bones to dogs that were provided with bones as puppies so that they have learned to chew them properly. Examine fecal matter after a meal that includes bones and observe if any sharp bones or fragments were passed. If so, we would advise against feeding bones. When feeding raw meat and organs, scrutinize for parasites (tapeworm cysts) and take precautions against bacterial contamination. Canids and felids may be able to cope with bacterial contamination better than humans, but caution is urged.
- Q: Do you have add ethoxyquin to your foods?
A: No, we do not add ethoxyquin, BHA or BHT to any of our formulas. We do add Vitamin E and/or rosemary, which are both natural preservatives. Our dry food formulas are all packaged in oxygen barrier packaging to preserve the integrity of our foods and prevent oxidation.
- Q: Do you have menadione (Vitamin K) in your foods?
A: No, we do not add Vitamin K to any of our formulas. Instead, we prefer to use foods that are naturally high in vitamin K1 such as alfalfa, kelp, oats, egg yolks and liver.
- Q: My vet is recommending a food that they sell in their practice. What should I do?
A: If your vet is recommending a particular food to address your pet's specific ailment, please discuss this with your vet and read the labeling to discern what that food includes or does not include that will make the difference to your pet's health. There may be ingredients or levels that will benefit your pet, or there may be ingredients or levels that do not best suit your pet's needs. Conduct your own research on which nutritional qualities and levels work best for your pet, then compare the vet recommended formula to other available foods on the market.
- Q: I have a new puppy. Do you have a food just for puppies?
A: All of our formulas are formulated using American Animal Feed Control Officials guidelines for "All Life Stages" and the U.S. government's National Research Council's "Nutrient Requirements of Dogs and Cats." Our nutritional and feeding philosophies are based on the higher proteins and fats with lower carbohydrate levels found in the diets of undomesticated wild animals. Our feeding instructions are "guidelines" only. As guardians of your pets, please observe your pets' activity levels and metabolisms and adjust the quantities fed to your animals based upon their individual activity, metabolisms, environmental conditions and weights. Puppies and kittens, as well as working and very active pets, may need up to 3 times the amount of food for their body weights than older or senior animals due to their very active state, which causes them to burn calories at a much higher rate.
- Q: How big is the kibble?
A: We have three sizes of kibble. Most are about 1/2 of the size of a dime. Our Wild & Natural is about 1/2 the size of that, and our Serengeti is a little smaller still.
- Q: I just started feeding my pet Timberwolf Organics, and now he has diarrhea or loose stools. What did I do wrong?
A: Timberwolf Organics formulas are a little different from other foods in that some are made with exotic meats and/or higher amounts of proteins and oils. Most of our formulas also include liberal quantities of herbs, fruit, nuts and or seeds that your pet may never have encountered in past formulas. Your pet may not be used to dining on higher-quality food that contains either unusual protein sources and/or unique additional ingredients. Please ensure when introducing your pet to Timberwolf Organics that you take it slowly by adding small amounts of the new formula to your old formula, increasing the amounts and deducting your old formula over a period of about 7 days.
- Q: My dog will not eat your food. Can I return the bag?
A: Unfortunately, we cannot accommodate this request. Please consider ordering a "sample pack" before ordering a larger bag of any of our formulas to help you decide which of our formulas may or may not meet with your pet's taste preferences. Our formulas are made with the only the best ingredients, and all ingredients are natural. We do not formulate for taste, smell, consistency, color or other factors unrelated to healthy nutrition. Therefore, these factors may vary.
- Q: How long will my pet's food stay fresh for?
A: Our foods are produced fresh every 4 weeks. Our formulas, due to appropriate levels of the natural preservatives vitamin E and rosemary along with our specialty oxygen barrier packaging, can have a shelf life of 18 months if sealed and kept in optimum temperature and storage conditions. We highly recommend that once the bag is opened, you store the contents of the original bag in a cool place and keep the bag as tightly closed as possible to maintain the integrity of the texture, flavor and aroma. You also have the option to place the bag and its contents in an airtight container. Once opened, it is suggested that the contents be consumed within 2-3 weeks for the freshest flavor and palatability to be enjoyed.
- Q: Is your food "human grade?"
A: Human Grade Some of you have probably heard numerous claims about pet foods using "human grade", "antibiotic and hormone free" "meat based" etc. and do not know what to believe anymore. Below I will try to address some of the claims that are really half truths and that could be construed as being misleading. First let me say that federal labeling law precludes pet food manufacturers from including "misleading" statements on their bag. For example some say that they use only antibiotic and hormone free chicken, lamb etc. That is not exactly true. First it is against federal law for chicken to be labeled as hormone free. That's because growers may not use hormones on chickens. To label your chicken as hormone free would imply that your chickens are the only ones that are hormone free when in fact they all are! What happens with other animals used for human consumption is that they must test free of hormones, antibiotics or pesticides before slaughter. It usually takes three to five days to clear their systems of any chemicals. Those animals that are earmarked for slaughter are kept free of chemicals for several days and then butchered. When I think of "antibiotic and hormone free" I think of an animal that has been raised chemical free, not just for a few days. A play on words perhaps but borderlines on fraud. Ask if it is Certified Organic, "pasture grazed only" or imported from a country that restricts the use of chemicals if that is what you want. Of course you will pay a lot more. Another one is: "Our meat comes from USDA inspected plants". All slaughter houses that process for human consumption must be USDA inspected. My favorite is "Made with only 100% human grade ingredients." One quick way to determine if this is not true (other than cost) is if the food contains any "meals". Guess what? There is no such thing as human grade chicken meal or lamb meal. I know of no restaurant where you can say "Waiter, may I have some beef meal to go with my baked potato?". Or "May I have my chicken meal on a bun please?". The meat starts out as human grade because remember it is from an inspected plant, but does not receive an inspection sticker because it is not intended for human consumption so cannot be labeled as human grade. There are different grades (classifications) of meals however and are graded (classified) by protein content, ash content and price. Some are of very high quality. For example, our lamb meal is imported from New Zealand and is a special low ash high (65%) protein lamb meal that we have classified and most of the bone is filtered out (all lamb, chicken, beef meals contain a lot of bone because it is made from what is left over from cutting away steaks or boneless chicken breast for example). It is the most expensive and probably the best lamb meal in the country as it is made from the organs and contains a lot of blood which gives it a very complete amino acid profile. Is it human grade? Come on class, I'm listening? Most lamb meals are high in ash and are low (50%) in protein. I searched six different suppliers before finding my current suppliers for chicken meal and for lamb meal. So you say "Fine. What about dog foods that list meat?" Good question! Oh what clever readers you are! First, only a handful of mills have the equipment to add meat. Some companies may list meat but actually use meal. Of those that can add meat it is not quite what you expect. It is usually mechanically deboned and mixed with water to make a slurry that is pumped into the extruder. The most you can use in your formula is limited to about 30%. What starts out as chicken with 78% moisture is now perhaps 90% moisture cooked down to 10%. That 30% you started out with is now about 3.3% or less dry matter. To get the protein up you must now add corn gluten meal or another protein source. Corn gluten meal is a good protein source, it is high in the sulfur containing amino acids, but a lot of people (myself included) prefer animal based proteins which means you must add animal meals which means it is not 100% human grade. Our Wild & NaturalTM is a meat based diet designed to simulate a diet seen in the wild. It is mostly lamb (or chicken or beef) meat w/liver, heart, spleen, lung, herbs, flax, kelp, brewers' yeast, brown rice, vitamins etc. already mixed properly in a salami type roll. The herbs, flax, and kelp are all certified organic. The meat is not certified organic but the ranch is in Canada and apparently no pesticides, antibiotics or hormones are used on the fields or the animals. Also, production is done the same day as slaughter so the meat is very fresh. This same slaughter house butchers the lambs into lamb chops, leg of lamb etc. for human consumption. The hearts, livers, spleens etc. come to us. Human grade? You tell me. Should I call it human grade? I don't think so. "What about the other ingredients?" you ask. The brown rice I get in looks just like the brown rice on your supermarket shelf, It is clean and looks indistinguishable. The only difference is that it does not have an FDA tag on it. Our oats are imported from Scandinavia and are of exceptional quality. Higher in linoleic and alpha linoleic acid than locally grown oats because of the cold (probably grown organically as well) and are the same oats that are supplied to food processors. Growers do not have certain fields for dogs and others for people. The point I am trying to make is that I have trouble believing that a company would pay five times as much for the same ingredient just to get that FDA sticker. Let me give you an example: I buy a chicken fat from a company that supplies soup manufacturers etc. If I buy a tanker of fat it does not have to have an FDA tag and my price is $.11 per pound. If I buy less it must have an FDA tag and the price goes to $.58 per pound. Same product. That chicken fat is apparently human grade but I cannot call it that. A lot of my ingredients are human grade, some even certified organic but at the end of the day I can not make the claim 100% human grade because it is not, but neither can any other company (unless maybe they are charging $2 - $5 per pound). Another example is that I can buy a truck load (40,000 lbs) of frozen whole broilers for $.50 per pound. I have inquired of my supplier of chicken liver hyrolysate that if I supplied him with organic meat could they make a custom chicken meal. They replied that yes they could (minimum two truck loads). Chicken meal is made from chicken meat (usually mechanically deboned) that is put into a vat and is brought to the proper temperature and pH and then enzymes are added. The meat is broken down into a liquid and either spray dried or roller dried into a fine powder. Now go back to my truck load of chickens at $.50 per pound. It takes several pounds of chickens to make one pound of chicken meal. So let us say 7 pounds times .50 equals $3.50 plus the rendering charge. Let us assume $4.00 per pound okay? I am using about 50% chicken meal so $4.00/2 is $2.00+ per pound of dog food my cost. Just for ingredients. Not including herbs, oils, probiotics etc. Does any of this make sense to some of you? One newer natural dog food company based in California uses poultry meal but lists on their ingredient label Chicken meal, Turkey meal. AAFCO allows listing animal meals by particular animal if you know what animal was used in making it. If the meal is made from more than one animal or a composite you may list all the animals used in making it. What they mean however is "Chicken/Turkey" meal for poultry or if you know the exact percentages than you may list them where they should appear in order of weight on the label but not Chicken meal, Turkey meal as the first two ingredients. Chicken meal, Turkey meal gives the impression that the food is meat based when in fact it is not. One question you can ask a dog food company to determine if it is meat based or grain based is "What percentage of your formula is animal meals?" or "What is the percentage of protein that is animal based?" or "How many pounds of animal meals are used per ton of your formula?" They probably will not tell you or say "That is proprietary." We use 48 to 52% chicken, lamb or fish meals by weight or 900 to 1100 pounds per ton! Put another way 91% of our protein is animal based. That is meal not meat. If someone tells you they use 1000 pounds of meat per ton that is equal to only 200 pounds of chicken meal or ten percent. Another way is to look at the calcium content. Chicken, lamb and meat meals are usually 4 - 5% calcium, so if a company claims to be using 50% animal meals by weight and their calcium is only 1.2% then you know something somewhere does not add up. Or maybe they are using "new" math. The only reason we disclose this is that it is VERY expensive and not many other companies will do this and those that do will have to raise their prices. Of course someone may tell you they use a high amount but if so the kibble should be very dark. Our Lamb, Barley and Apples is almost black. Now that you have read this page, at least you'll know what is in the food. If I decide to put in goat's eyes, tongue of wren and pickled fish pan fried in roasted sesame oil you'll know it. None of my formulas contain 4D animals, simple (read white) carbohydrates, dextrose or other sugars for palatability enhancement, soy, BHT, BHA or Ethoxyquin. I personally have sold and used a lot of specialty and super premium foods and I have seen more positive results and heard more positive feed back with this Timberwolf food than any other. I invite you to go to testimonials and read some of the testimonials.
- Q: Is Timberwolf Organics, Inc. owned by Diamond Pet Foods, Inc.?
A: No. Timberwolf Organics is a private and independently owned company. Diamond Pet Foods did at one time manufacture our formulas, but we no longer have any business association with them.
- Q: Why should I use Salmon Oil?
A: Salmon oil increases the amount of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids that your pet is receiving. Studies have shown that these fatty acids help with skin and coat, memory and other brain function.
- Q: I thought your foods already contained omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
A: They do, but like humans, each animal is unique, so the needed amount of fatty acids can vary from pet to pet. By providing an additional source of omega-3 and omega-6, you can ensure that your pet is receiving the proper amount they need.
- Q: My Salmon Oil has a different consistency than I normally see. Is it still good?
A: Yes. The cloudiness in the oil is due to a process called "winterization." When the oil freezes, it causes the long chain fatty acids to clump up, causing the change in appearance. It is still the same quality oil and is perfectly good to use.
- Q: Why are you out of stock of Salmon Oil sometimes?
A: By using Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon, we ensure the highest quality, purest oil available. This also means that we are at the mercy of the weather and other elements of the Alaskan fishing season, so supply can sometimes be limited. We do everything possible to have a constant supply, but due to the nature of the product it does, from time to time, go out of stock.
- Q: I have successfully placed an order. When can I expect delivery?
A: Orders are normally shipped within 24-48 business hours after you receive your order confirmation. Orders take on average a week to a week and a half to receive, depending on where in the country you are. Our warehouse is in the Midwest.
- Q: I have placed my order, but I have not received an order confirmation email yet. When will I get it?
A: Order confirmation emails are normally sent within 1 business day of placing your order. Please call us if you do not receive an order confirmation email within 3 business days of placing your order.
- Q: I placed an order, received an order confirmation email but still have not received my order. What should I do?
A: Please call us immediately so we can put a trace on your order.
- Q: I don't feel comfortable ordering online with my credit card, and there is no retailer close by. Can I place my order over the phone?
A: Our website is a secure website. All credit card numbers are encrypted and cannot be read. We can take phone orders. A $5.00 surcharge will apply due to additional costs incurred from this type of transaction. However, this may cause delays in processing your order, and the process is carried out in exactly the same way as if you had done it yourself via our website.
- Q: How can I find my closest retailer?
A: Please click on our "Where To Buy" tab. Enter your zip code, and a list of dealers will appear.
- Q: I am a local retailer. Why do you sell online?
A: We offer our products online to help cover the areas that do not have any stores in their area. Over 95% of our online sales come from areas that do not have a store that carries our products. We highly recommend that any customer check to see if there is a nearby store that carries our food, and to visit and purchase from them.
- Q: There is no retailer in my area. What should I do?
A: For customers who do not have a retail outlet within their local traveling area, you can order directly off our website. Shipping only costs $4.95 no matter how much you order. Your order will be shipped in 24-48 business hours via FedEx. You will receive an order confirmation email once your order has been shipped.
- Q: I want to cancel my order. What is the procedure?
A: Please contact us as soon as possible after placing your order. If your order has already been processed but not shipped, we can usually cancel your order and refund your credit card if notified in a timely manner. PayPal account cancellations will be reimbursed by a company check. If the order has been shipped, you will incur the shipping fees for both the outbound and inbound shipping charges.
- Q: My order has not yet arrived. How long should I wait and what is the correct procedure?
A: If you have not received your order within seven business days after receiving your confirmation, please check your emails for your UPS or FedEx tracking number. If you are unable to find a tracking number or if you see a problem with the shipping, please contact us directly.
- Q: I placed an order and it has been shipped, but I no longer want the product. What can I do?
A: You may return the product providing it is in good resalable condition. A 15% restocking fee will apply. Please refer to our legal notice at the bottom of this page for more details. Authorization should be obtained by contactingCustomerSuppor@timberwolforganics.com Any shipping charges must be paid by you. Once we have received the product, and it has been inspected for resalable condition, your refund can be issued.
- Q: Can you ship to an APO address or to Alaska/Hawaii?
A: We do not ship outside of the contiguous 48 states at this time. We cannot ship to APO addresses at this time as well.
- Q: I don't live in the USA. Can you still ship an order to me?
A: Unfortunately, we do not ship orders internationally due to shipping costs, fees, and import/export laws banning or restricting certain foods or ingredients being shipped.
- Q: My order has arrived damaged with holes, tears, cuts, etc. What is the procedure?
A: Any orders received should be inspected at the time of delivery and reported to the UPS/FedEx driver before they leave. Their written verification of damages should be obtained. You should then contact us immediately by phone. If you have a digital camera, please take pictures of the damages and email them to CustomerSupport@timberwolforganics.com. Please retain the original shipping box for returns and/or inspection of shipping materials. Once we have received the damaged products back into our warehouse, we will immediately ship you a replacement.
- Q: Do you offer free samples?
A: Due to the exorbitant costs of producing samples, we have discontinued the production of samples at this time. Please consider purchasing a 4lb bag, which should give your pet ample opportunity to sample our formulas and our human customers the opportunity to assess your pet's preference for each of our formulations. If you have further questions that you think our customers would benefit from our adding to this page, please email your questions to CustomerSupport@timberwolforganics.com.