Make sure you serve your pooch Made in America treats during this year's Puppy Bowl.
While many Americans are fired up about the Super Bowl on Sunday, some of us are looking forward to the big game airing on Animal Planet earlier in the afternoon: Puppy Bowl XI.
In this annual display of canine cuteness, a group of puppies play in a mock football stadium, complete with plenty of crowd noise and color commentary provided by Animal Planet announcers. The puppies earn points when they run into the end zone with a football-shaped toy, and a referee is down on the field to make sure everyone plays fair.
And while the pup players — all of whom are rescues recruited from animal shelters — are the highlight of the big game, there’s also a Kitten Halftime Show, and sideline reporter Meep the Bird provides live updates.
But gearing up for this year’s Puppy Bowl got us thinking again about why it is so important for canine (and feline!) lovers everywhere to check the label when buying treats for their pet. Sadly, Made in China dog and cat treats are suspected of sickening thousands of pets and killing more than 1,000 dogs in the United States since 2007.
That doesn’t mean your pet has to go without savvy snacks during this year’s Puppy Bowl — it’s easier than ever to find Made in America treats, especially since pet retailer Petco has removed all Chinese-made treats from its stores and website. (Competitor PetsMart says it will have all China-made treats off its shelves by March.)
Here are a handful of Made in America treat options to pamper your pet during this year’s Puppy Bowl:
Milk-Bone Dog Biscuits are among the easiest treats to find in stores — and the great news is that they are also Made in the USA! The Mini’s biscuits, which come in three flavors and contain only five calories per treat, are ideal for smaller pups. The larger biscuits contain 12 vitamins and minerals, and their texture is designed to help clean your canine’s teeth.
Blue Buffalo Wilderness Jerky is described as a “protein-packed chicken or turkey strip with more than enough taste to satisfy your canine carnivore.” The all-natural product contains no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives. Blue Buffalo’s Blue Bones Dog Treats, meanwhile, are dental chews designed to freshen your dog’s breath and whiten those pearly canines. They come in a variety of sizes, so whether your dog is a chihuahua or St. Bernard, you can find the perfect treat.
Nylabone’s Nutri Dent Complete Dental Chews help reduce plaque and tartar while also providing a delicious treat for your pup. The chews are available in a variety of sizes and flavors, including chicken, filet mignon and peanut butter, which is also grain free. For dogs who are “powerful chewers,” Nylabone’s Healthy Edibles provide bacon and chicken flavor without any corn or wheat.
All of the treats sold by Fruitables are USA sourced and made, and include flavors ranging from Greek Yogurt Crunchers to Whole Jerky to Pumpkin Baked. The company’s line of Skinny Minis are ideal for training.
With only three calories per treat, Charlee Bear Dog Treats also are a good option for training, and they are Made in the USA with USA-sourced ingredients. Meanwhile, Prairie Dog Biscuits are 100 percent pure meat, without any fillers from wheat, corn, soy or added fat.
Don’t worry — we haven’t forgotten about your feline friends.
Blue Buffalo’s Kitty Yums soft-moist treats come in a variety of flavors, including chicken, tuna, turkey and salmon. Along with making treats, Feline Greenies makes pill pockets to help your cat’s medicine go down, along with Smart Bites designed to assist with hairball control and digestive care.