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  1. Marie Happeny

    Hi, I just ordered the 2019 list. I see that The Honest Kitchen is not on it this year. It had been on the 2017 and 2018 lists. I am feeding my dog this food. Should I be concerned? Is there a specific reason why it is not on this year’s list? Thanks

    1. Susan Thixton Author

      Hi Marie – I can easily say why a pet food is on the List. But it’s not so easy to say why they are not. Sorry.

      1. T Allen

        Do the companies you dropped know why you dropped them? In other words can we we call them and ask why (and expect an answer)?

        1. Susan Thixton Author

          One absolutely does (we had several email exchanges about it). The others should.

      2. Terri Rucker

        I got your 2019 List and I feed The Honest Kitchen exclusively. It really scared me that they are no longer on the list. I sent an email to The Honest Kitchen. I got an email back and a phone call. Both said they have always supported you and your mission. This was a portion of the reply: “Ms. Thixton did inform us recently that we wouldn’t be receiving a participation questionnaire this year, which she declined to give a reason why, despite our founder Lucy Postins asking for an explanation, on several occasions.

        1. Susan Thixton Author

          I received confidential information – unrelated to the safety of their pet food. I respect confidential agreements. HK is right, I did send them an email in advance telling them they would not be receiving questions for consideration in the 2019 List. And I did not provide HK the confidential information provided me.

          1. Tyler Hund

            Why did you not send them questions for consideration? What happened over the last year? Did something change with the company or did your methods become more stringent?

          2. Kim

            As a long time supporter of both your work and of The Honest Kitchen, since it’s not food safety related, I’m disappointed that you didn’t give them a chance to address the confidential information you received. Or, at the very least, as per the comment above, respond to them about why they were not receiving a questionnaire.

            Of course, you have your standards, and it’s completely up to you. This is your list. I get that.

            It’s just my opinion that since this particular company was on the forefront of pushing for human grade certification, and has been on the list for years, they’d deserve a little extra consideration.

            I’m not affiliated with them in any way. I home cook most of my cat food, and supplement with The Honest Kitchen. I’ll continue to do so.

            I do greatly appreciate your work – I was very active during the pet food recall but couldn’t maintain it – so I appreciate that you do.

          3. Susan Thixton Author

            Let’s just say you don’t walk in my shoes. I walk a fine line with multiple targets on my back at all times. I do the best I can at providing information to pet owners.

    2. Eve Louise

      Hi Marie. I love Susan’s relentless work like we all do. I’m completing my Animal Holistic Pet Nutrition Course with over decades of veterinary care background. If I can help you (and others) to PLEASE follow the BARF Diet Principals and it realy is so simple to feed cats and dogs their proper diet that repels and helps reverse majority of diseases. Feeding a raw diet is not expensive. Pet owners get o/whelmed into thinking they have to feed ‘everything in one go’ to their pets BIG MISTAKE ACTUALLY this is what these processed pet food giants ‘want’ you to believe in fact if you try to do that it creates disease NO animal on this planet ‘ever’ retains ‘complete and balanced’ food/nutrition in one mea. Cats dont and neither do dogs esp as they are scavenger-carnivores unlike cats being strict-carnivores who desperately need fresh raw prey ‘on the spot’ where dogs roam, capture prey and sometime bury it for days to consume later. PLEASE HAVE A GO at just buying game and poultry carcasses and offal and raw-meaty-bones pref chicken necks/wings and quail carcasses. Remember to ‘transition over few weeks’ allowing gut PH7 balance to ‘restore to allow digestion and functioning’ sometimes pet owners pets may vomit a little that’s ‘because it’s not being done slow enough to restore gut acidity. Feeding grains and grain-free predominantly starch=’sugar’ will strip the gut lining creating many disorders incl metabolic disorders typically diabetes and hyper/hypothyroidism – esp with cats – cats do not absorb critical Taurine in a synthetic compound as well as in it’s natural state so FEED CHICKEN HEARTS and CHICKEN BONES. (just cut above/under thyroid gland IF its on chicken necks and throw the thyroid-glands out to minimise thyroxine (hormone in glands) overdose in our pets. There is one brand that I know of that is universal and that’s ZIWI-PEAK it is SIMPLE AIR DRIED MEATS FROM NEW ZEALAND and is VERY SAFE compared to toxic-russian-roulette kibble. FEED FRESH RAW poultry/game/lamb/turkey etc and ADD the kiwi-dried meats as a SIDE-DISH. I’ll inform Susan about ziwi-peak as I will buy her list next week it could already be on there but don’t know yet. ALL THE BEST

  2. Woofielover

    What’s even more interesting is who is NO LONGER on the list! Thanks Susan and great job on this! You always work so hard on behalf of pets and their parents everywhere.❤️

  3. Lynette

    Thank you for working so hard on behalf of our pets! <3

  4. Eve Louise

    Hi Susan, Thank You for the 2018 Lists I’ll purchase them next week and I bought your book Buyers Beware. Without seeing the 2018 list until next week is Ziwi Peak on it? Here’s a link to their foods. The packet foods are not kibble but instead ethically farmed and raised cattle/meat in New Zealand where the meat is 100% meat and is gently (not high rendering cooking temps) air dried. The tin food is far better than anything I have seen but it is still cooked and has mineral supplementation not sure where its from. However I believe it deserves a placement on your list because of it’s pure 100% and better tinned food I have seen on the market today. I’m finishing my Pet Holistic Nutrition Course very soon and can’t wait to help pets and their owners. Great respects to you. Love Eve (Sydney Australia) X

    1. Susan Thixton Author

      Ziwi Peak is not on the List, never has been.

  5. Eve Louise

    ps..whoops I meant the 2019 List. Is Ziwi-Peak on it? 🙂

  6. Eve

    Hi Susan, why isnt ziwi peak incl? its avail in USA.

    1. Susan Thixton Author

      It is easy for me to say why a pet food is on the List – not so easy to say why not. Sorry.

      1. Joe Silva

        On Ziwi Peak labels we can read: “Inedible. Not for human consumption”…Definetely, Ziwi is NOT human grade!

        1. Eve

          Thats interesting Joe ill research and contact the company. Alrhough the packet dried meat is pure meat ethically grown quite rare in processed pet foods. Thanks.

  7. Chibi Rubi

    Hello Susan, Thanks for the 2019 List. As others have mentioned, I can’t help but notice that The Honest Kitchen is excluded for 2019. Another company that I have used in the past is Carna4. It did not make the list for 2018 and again for 2019. I could only assume that there must be good reasons…

  8. Marie H

    Thank you for your great work, Susan. I will take T Allen’s recommendation and contact The Honest Kitchen and see their response to why they did not make the 2019 list. Thanks again.

  9. patti holma

    I am curious why K9 Naturals and Honest Kitchen products are not included. If I contact either of them, will they be able to state why?

  10. Woofielover

    As a retailer, I have to comment on the “call the company” comments… Expecting any company you call to tell you “why” or to in any way provide negative details on their brand, practices, ingredients, sourcing, etc. is naive and unrealistic. No matter what, they all either spin the info, deflect blame, avoid direct response or just outright lie. Even companies that have serious issues like pentobarbital do it when caught red-handed . No company is going to admit to anything negative as it’s self-destructive and potentially liable. Beware those companies who enlist investors as it begins the decline of who they once were.

    Susan is an advocate that can’t be bought for what she writes. She’s the real deal and has been advocating and seeking the truth longer than anyone else out there. Either you’ll choose to believe her – the uncompensated champion for pets everywhere – or believe the company who has a bottom line focus and a great deal of money at risk.

    If you want to support Susan and her efforts, BUY THE LIST!! What she does takes a lot of work, time, effort and money to provide info for which you don’t have to do the research (even if you could at the level she does it).

    1. Susan Thixton Author

      Thank you.

    2. Marie H

      I do whole heartedly support Susan and I have bought the last three lists. I had chosen to feed my dog The Honest Kitchen food based on the 2017 and 2018 list. Since I am currently feeding my dog this food, I was concerned that this food was not on the 2019 list. Hopefully, I will get a satisfactory response from The Honest Kitchen since this food was good enough to be on prior lists. I would like to know what changed and I specifically asked that. I don’t know if they will spin or lie, so I will have to see.

      1. Tyler Hund

        Please post your response from HK if able. I am very interested to know what has changed for HK to fall off of the list.

  11. Fiona

    Will there be another list of “Foods I would NEVER give to my pets and why”?

  12. Diane

    Susan, I honor your work and the effort you put forth, but my cat is a determined kibble eater (sigh). Is there at least one feline dry kibble in the 2019 list?

    1. Susan Thixton Author

      One dry cat food. Try this with your cat, grind up dry cat food and sprinkle it over wet food. Start slow, just a tiny bit of wet at first. Years back, it took me almost a full year to move one of my stubborn kitties off kibble. You have to be more determined than them, which isn’t easy at times.

  13. Lynn Felici-Gallant

    Hi Susan, What is the procedure for inviting companies invited to submit the questionnaire? Do you send out an email? Call for entries? Reach out personally? We read the info above about what companies must submit but are still unclear of the process. Many thanks in advance for your response and for all of your work on behalf of pets. Best, Lynn

    1. Susan Thixton Author

      The companies are picked by me – often from information shared with me from pet owners.

  14. NY

    Year after year I have looked forward to the opportunity to learn about new and different trustworthy foods for our feline family! I am most grateful to Susan at the start of every year to learn of these quality, noted suggestions because the market selection is limited for cats and it is nice to try and change things up in the household for eating excitement. However, like all of you here isn’t it nerve-wracking to see so many past years manufacturer regulars omitted? Gives me a knot in my stomach as far as continuing with their products…Hound and Gatos, Feline Natural, Honest Kitchen, Vital Essentials, Carna4…ugh…I like to think optimistically and think that room is made on the list for even more healthy manufacturers than ones previously listed as the calling message for healthier, non toxic choices becomes louder? Sometimes having canned choices along with raw is helpful. If anyone receives an answer to their inquiries, would you perhaps be kind enough to post it here maybe for everyone to get some peace of mind with regards to their choices going forward? Thank you, all the best to your families!!

  15. Megan

    I just bought this list, as I’ve done a few times in the past few years. I bought 2017 but missed last year’s for some reason. I rarely see canned food for cats on the list. This year I don’t seen any at all. Is this correct? Is there a reason why you don’t recommend any canned foods? So basically you only recommend a raw diet and “cooked” foods, and you explained this above before I bought it, but it’s hard to find those foods you recommended. Mostly online it looks like. I guess my question is, is all canned food pretty much crap? Because I thought we were doing good giving canned food over dry. Also, can you ever give us the name of the company that is continuously recommended every year? I compare lists and only see maybe 4 or 5 names that reappear. I want to give my business to the those people that KEEP showing up! Any insight would be great, thanks!

    1. Susan Thixton Author

      To date, there are no human grade canned foods. A few years back there was a canned dog and cat food on the List – but ownership has changed.

    2. NY

      I agree with your thoughts and it is disappointing too see practically all canned foods (Natures Logic, K(/Feline Naturals, Hound and Gatos, Bravo) now omitted because it may mean that their original quality is no longer the same great “recipe”…sad…seems like the trend for trustworthy eats are only dehydrated/raw human grade. It is better to know that not so even though the news is not terrific for canned foods we now can make better decisions for our families…

    3. Eve

      Hi Megan, True all canned and dry food IS crap. Why? because its “cooked” I dont recall seeing any wild animals stalking, hunting, chasing and devouring packet food nor tackling tins! There is ONLY 1 ALTERNATIVE feed pets real food Raw Meat and Raw Meaty Bones! Its sooooo easy follow BARF diet and get the book give your dog a bone AND pointing the bone at cancer both by Dr Ian Billinghurst over 40years feeding cats, dogs this way. (Ferrets too must be fed this way) well done diseases 1-2-3 GONE! ☺

  16. Jay

    No human grade canneries? I feed my cat FirstMate, and as far as I’m aware they use a human grade cannery in Canada. I’m very picky with what I feed, but based on the information I’ve received from the company, they are within the human-grade category.

  17. Mike

    Susan, thank you for everything you are doing. I was wondering if there is at least one dry kibble dog food on the 2019 list? I am trying to transition my rescue off puppy food.

    1. Tyler Hund

      Just buy the list and show support.

  18. Terri Rucker

    This is the email I received back from The Honest Kitchen. I also received a phone call and another email to be sure they had answered my questions.

    Hi Terri,
    Thank you so much for your question. We’ve always been, and remain today, an advocate for Truth About Pet Food’s overarching mission, and have always addressed Ms. Thixton’s questions about our company honestly and promptly throughout the years. Unfortunately, we’re unsure what criteria have changed and the reasoning for omitting several previously included brands from the 2019 list, including The Honest Kitchen. Ms. Thixton did inform us recently that we wouldn’t be receiving a participation questionnaire this year, which she declined to give a reason why, despite our founder Lucy Postins asking for an explanation, on several occasions.

    We can assure you wholeheartedly that The Honest Kitchen’s own mission, vision and values remain unchanged. We have had absolutely no change to our ingredients, our manufacturing, and our commitment to product quality and safety testing. We make each and every recipe with uncompromising attention to detail, and we’re incredibly proud to be the first Human Grade pet food back in 2002 – a true line in the sand with it comes to quality control.

    If and when we receive any indication on Truth About Pet Food’s criteria for which companies were allowed to complete this year’s questions, we will be happy to address them, and remain open to participating.

    Please let me know if you have any other questions or concerns.

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