Frequently Asked Questions
Our 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).
To ensure each formula is made at its absolute best, our cans come from a variety of different manufacturers. We have selected two of the best producers in the US, in South Dakota (our Grain Free Pates for Dogs and Cats) and New Jersey (Healthy Entrees for Dogs). Our Ultra-Premium Stews for Dogs & Cats are made in New Zealand, one of the purest natural environments in the world and our in-gravy cat foods are made in Ontario, Canada. Our 3oz cat cans are manufactured in Thailand, and are our only products that come from anywhere in Asia. The plant we work with here is of the highest quality and makes other well-known and trusted brands such as Weruva.
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 and other possible concerns. Only when we know the batch is safe do we release it for use.
The owner of your independent pet store is first and foremost a pet lover. The brands they carry are the product of years of study and research and they would not recommend or carry Grandma Mae’s if they didn’t believe in the formulas. Buying at local merchants also 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.
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.
INGREDIENT AND FORMULA QUESTIONS
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 Meal from France, for the best possible quality
- Grass-fed lamb 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
- Fish from the cold waters of the North Atlantic Ocean, caught off either Norway, the Maritime Provinces of Canada, or the South Pacific off Chile, 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
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 two of the leading pet nutritionists in the US: Dr. Willard, who has a PhD in Animal Nutrition from North Carolina State and has been the full-time in-house nutritionist for manufacturers including the Iams Corp and Performance Foods, and Dr. Dzanis, who has a DVM from Purdue and a PhD in Veterinary nutrition from Cornell, and is a Diplomate and past chair of the American College of Veterinary Nutrition. Dr. Willard is instrumental in formulating our foods, with Dr. Dzanis reviewing them before they are finalized.
Yes, the ingredients in Grandma Mae’s are human grade.
Yes, all the minerals in Country Naturals are chelated.
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.
Yes, we buy naturally stabilized fish meal, so it is ethoxyquin free.
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. With a larger-volume formula it is almost impossible to obtain ingredients of the same quality and freshness when compared with a smaller formula. With many large brands, your bag one month will come from one factory and the next month it will come from a plant in a different part of the country.
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.
Your dog manufactures all the Vitamin C it will ever need, so there is no need to supplement it. We do supplement it in some of our cat foods and the ingredient is sourced in Europe.
High quality dog foods that contain a substantial proportion of meat, like Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals, do not require Taurine to be supplemented. However, we supplement to high levels of Methionine, a substance which is the key building block of Taurine, to ensure that your dog will naturally make all the Taurine he needs. Cats do require added Taurine, and it is supplemented in all of our cat formulas.
All of our foods have an approximate pH of 6.6.
The kibble on most of our formulas is relatively small so that pets of all sizes can enjoy it. While our large breed kibbles are larger than average and our small breed kibbles are smaller than average the veterinary nutritionists that made up our formulas designed all our kibble to be on the smaller side as it allows for even more absorption of nutrients.
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.
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.
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.