Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals made?

barnimgOur kibble is manufactured in the USA in the beautiful farm country of rural upstate New York. Our facilities have been making the highest quality premium pet foods made in America for the past 20 years. The plants have earned three of the most stringent certifications that a pet food facility can have, including the highest level of organic certification in the US-Oregon Tilth Certification, and the European Union Certification. (Europe’s testing standards are tougher than those in the US).

Where are the canned foods made?

Although there are many different canned foods on the market, many of the brands with good-looking ingredient panels source their products in Asia. While we imagine many of these products are fine, we feel more comfortable sourcing products in the developed world, in countries with high standards of quality and concern for health all along the supply chain. For our cans we have selected two of the best producers in the US, in South Dakota (Grain Free pates for dogs and cats) and New Jersey (Healthy Entrees for Dogs). Ultra-Premium Plus Complete Diets for both Dogs and Cats are made in New Zealand, one of the purest natural environments in the world. Our in-gravy cat foods are made in Ontario, Canada. With Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals canned food, you can be confident of the highest degree of excellence for your pet.

What is the background to the Grandma Mae’s formula?

The original Grandma Mae’s formulas were developed by one of the leading experts in the field of Animal Nutrition for 35 years; he has a PhD in Animal Nutrition from the University of Illinois, and was one of the originators of the holistic fresh-ingredient category.  Since our first expert’s retirement, we are now associated with one of the leading pet nutritionists in the US, who received a doctoral degree  in Nutrition and Biochemistry from North Carolina State University.

Who owns the company that makes Grandma Mae’s?

Grandma Mae's is owned by a co-op of independent pet retailers and 35 of its members. It is owned by small business people—not a big corporation, Wall Street or private equity investors—which is why it’s such a great value.

Why should I buy pet food from an independent pet store?

The owner of your independent pet store is first and foremost a pet lover. The brands he or she carries are the product of years of study and research.

What’s another reason to shop at an independent pet store?

Buying at local merchants supports the economy of your area. Studies show that for every dollar you spend at retail, 3 ½ times more stays in your community if you spend it at a local merchant instead of at a national chain.

Where do the ingredients in Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals come from?

Almost all of our ingredients come from the USA.  To ensure the best quality product, a few may come from Canada, the UK, or Europe.

Some examples of our sourcing include:

  • No ingredients from China in any of our products
  • Chicken from family farms in Ohio
  • Duck from small breeders in Missouri
  • Grass-fed lamb and Venison from New Zealand, one of the world’s purest environments
  • Brown rice and other whole grains, legumes like peas, lentils and chickpeas, all grown in the US, and in a few cases in Canada
  • Our fish comes from the cold waters of the North Atlantic Ocean, caught off either Norway, the Maritime Provinces of Canada, or Maine, with fish meal processed onshore, not on ships. Onshore processing means we can avoid the preservative ethoxyquin, which is required with on-ship processing
  • Vitamins from the US, Canada or Europe

Are the ingredients in Grandma Mae’s human grade?

Yes.

If the product is made in small batches, how do you maintain consistency?

Consistency is not at all related to the size of the batch. It is determined by being made on the same equipment every time using the same settings, and with the same operators. On the other hand, with a large-volume formula it is impossible to obtain ingredients of the same quality and freshness as with a smaller formula. With many large brands, your bag one month willl come from one factory, the next one from a plant in a different part of the country.

Does Grandma Mae's Country Naturals have chelated minerals?

Yes, all the minerals in Country Naturals are chelated.

Was there really a Grandma Mae?

We named our pet food after our beloved Grandma Mae (1899-1985). Grandma Mae, “the lady with the smile,” was an early advocate and practitioner of healthy eating and exercise for both people and pets.

Does Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals Pet Food need to be supplemented?

No. All Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals formulas are complete and balanced according to AAFCO guidelines, and do not need to be supplemented with anything.
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Is your menhaden fish meal ethoxyquin free?

Yes, we buy naturally stabilized fish meal, so it is ethoxyquin free.

What is the pH of your foods?

All of our foods have an approximate pH of 6.6.

Does Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals contain Vitamin C that comes from Asia?

Your dog manufactures all the Vitamin C it will ever need, so there is no need to supplement it. We do supplement it in two of our three cat foods, and the ingredient is sourced in Europe.

How Do I Know My Pet Food is Safe?

We can't speak for other brands, but all batches of Grandma Mae's Country Naturals are sent to an outside lab after we make it and tested for Salmonella. Only when we know the batch is safe do we release it for use.
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DOG AND CAT FOOD FAQS

What size is Grandma Mae’s kibble?

The kibble on most of our formulas is relatively small so that pets of all sizes can enjoy it. Our large breed kibbles are larger than average and our small breed kibbles are smaller than average.

Can I feed Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals Adult Pet Food to older pets?

Yes! Most Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals formulas have been approved for all life stages. We do have one formula especially for puppies and two especially for senior, low activity and overweight dogs.

Is ash content important to know in premium cat foods like Grandma Mae's?  What should I be looking for?

High levels of ash, often found in low quality pet foods, were thought to be a major cause of urinary tract problems in cats.  With a premium food like Grandma Mae's Country Naturals, ash is naturally low and this is not a concern.  The real issue to be concerned with is not the ash content but the proportion of calcium, phosphorus and magnesium.  Consumers should look for foods with an approximate ratio of 1.2 or 1.3 Calcium to 1.0 Phosphorus to .06 Magnesium.  Both Grandma Mae's dry and canned cat foods meet these standards.

What is "Jointastic"?

Jointastic is a word we use to describe our formulas that are optimized for Joint health. We supplement Glucosamine and Chondroitin in select formulas to reduce likelihood of joint issues and increase joint comfort and support, which is especially important for large breeds and senior dogs. Glucosamine and Chondroitin work even more effectively when paired together.  Our Large Breed, Grain Free Fish, and Senior/Low Fat formulas are all Jointastic.  Learn more about are Jointastic formulas here ...

What is "Uristic"?

Uristic is a word that means our cat foods are optimized for long term urinary tract health. The amino acid Methionine raises the acidity of urine, which helps break down urine crystals, in turn reducing inflammation of the urinary tract.  DL-Methionine occurs naturally in our fresh ingredients and we supplement it to reach the exact level needed for your cat’s long-term health.  Our Cat/Kitten Formula, our Grain Free Cat/Kitten Formula, and our canned cat food formulas, if fed at the level of our feeding guidelines (found here) are all Uristic.

Does Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals contain supplemented Taurine?

High quality dog foods that contain a substantial proportion of meat, like Grandma Mae's Country Naturals, do not require Taurine to be supplemented. Only dog foods that have less meat than Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals, e.g. foods with lots of corn, need to supplement Taurine.  However, cats do require added Taurine, and it is supplemented in all of our cat formulas.

Why is Beet Pulp in GMCN Puppy Food?

Beet pulp is a gentle "insoluble" fiber which absorbs moisture and adds bulk to stools for easy elimination. Beet pulp is mainly fiber, produced after nearly all the sugar is extracted from sugar beets. The amount of sugar in the product from this ingredient is extremely low, so low as to be insignificant from a nutritional standpoint. It is colorless and does not turn any part of a pet red. Beet pulp is a good source of nutrition for the beneficial bacteria that reside in the intestinal tract.

What is the best way to introduce Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals as a new food to my pet?

Most pets love Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals the first time they try it as their primary or sole food. For pets not accustomed to changing diets the best way to introduce a food is to gradually mix it with the old diet adding a larger amount of the new food at each meal as you decrease the proportion of the old food. This should be done over a period of 7-10 days. When a gradual transition is not an option, do not leave large amounts of Country Naturals out for your pet all the time. Feed controlled portions to keep your pet from eating too much of the new great-tasting food.

What if my pet tries Grandma Mae’s and experiences a softened stool?

This is very rare, and will probably not happen to your pet. If it does happen, contact the retailer where you bought the food. If you cannot reach the retailer for a day or two and you think an abrupt change in food has caused the softened stool, try adding solid pack pumpkin (canned plain pumpkin without added spices) to each meal for a few days.

How do I know if my pet needs to lose weight? If so, can I feed Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals?

A pet owner can tell if their pet is overweight by looking at their pet from above to see if there is a waist in front of the hips. Owners can also look at the pet from the side to make sure there is no belly but that the abdomen goes up between the ribs and the hips. An owner can also feel the rib cage and although the ribs should not show from the outside (which could mean a pet is underweight), the ribs should be easy to feel. If an owner must put pressure on the sides of the rib cage to feel the ribs, or cannot feel the ribs at all, then the pet may be overweight.